Monday, November 28, 2016

"The Greatest Gift"

When a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. When he looks at me, he sees the one who sent me. I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. – John 12:44-46

“I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.”  What a wonderful truth for us to receive, take in and meditate on.  Have you ever tried to imagine complete darkness? (Personally, I do not want to go there even in my imagination.  I like the light!  I like it when on December 22 the daylight hours become a longer part of our day.) But, have you ever tried to imagine no stars, no moon, no sun, no street lights, no lights from a neighbor’s house, not even a single match striking to light a single candle?  To me, complete darkness – total absence of light – does not depict a very inviting place to be.

Which is why I love this scripture so much! Jesus, sent by Father, came to show the Way, to light our path, to bring us out of darkness into his wonderful and marvelous light (I Peter 2:9) and to eternal life.

During this season of thanksgiving, where we usually give thanks for a lot of things in our life, let us not forget to give thanks for the most wonderful and greatest gift of all --  Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.  Let’s give thanks to God our Father for sending (giving – John 3:16) us His One and Only Son --- the Light of the world who has taken us from dreadful darkness into lighted pathways where we can walk hand-in-hand with Him.

Bottom Line:  Jesus Christ, the greatest gift of all is the Light of the world and everyday for those who believe in Him, He faithfully lights up the pathways for us to follow. Amen? Amen.

Monday, November 21, 2016

"... undivided devotion to the Lord."

"I am saying this for you own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord." -- I Corinthians 7:35

Where does your devotion lie? With the Lord? And, is that devotion full time or part-time? By that I mean are you just devoted to the Lord on Sunday morning or just during your prayer time? Or, do you try to be devoted to Him all the time? Not just when you need Him -- not just when you are in a bad way.

Let me show you how devoted He is to you:

"The LORD  is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD  forever." -- Psalm 23

Bottom Line: May we always know how devoted the Lord is to us and may we always be devoted to Him at all times. Amen? Amen.

Monday, November 14, 2016

"Teach me Lord"

How many of us had a favorite teacher in school? One we knew understood us, had patience for us, did not give up on us? Mine was Miss King, my High School chemistry teacher. It was my second try as I did not do so well under another teacher the year before.  Miss King just seem to set a foundation for understanding that subject that I had not had before. She was patient, made sure we understood before moving on.  I appreciated that and needed that kind of teacher.

Let's look at the following verses:

"Show me Your ways, O LORD, teach me Your paths;" -- Psalm 25:4
"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you." -- Psalm 32:8
"Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; may Your good Spirit lead me on level ground." -- Psalm 143:10
"But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you." -- John 14:26

Miss King was a great teacher at the right time in my life. However, she has been long gone out of my life. Hear this -- there is a teacher who is always there for you and me. In good times, in bad times, through thick and thin, through our ups and downs, who will never give up on us, who is patient with us, who is understanding, etc. And that is the Lord Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Bottom Line:  With the Lord we are in school every day. So, may we be able to say every day, "Teach me Lord. Show me your ways."  Amen? Amen.

Monday, November 7, 2016

". . . a single command . . ."

The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself." -- Galatians 5:14

The only way to fulfill this scripture is through the love of God. Knowing that God is love and that we love because He first loved us. (Read -- I John 4:16 & 19).

Two points:

(1) This love is, agape -- seeking the highest good of another.
(2) Neighbor literally means "the one near you at any given time."

Did you get that? Your neighbor is not just the one living next door to you. It is the one near you at any given time. At the gas pump, in the check out line buying groceries, in the booth next to where you are eating, in the vehicle that just cut you off in traffic, the waiter or waitress waiting your table,etc.  I am sure you could think of other instances of where you may have a neighbor in your life circumstances.  Wherever you may be, are you treating those near you at any given time as a "neighbor"?  Neighbors give of themselves without expecting anything in return. (Read the Parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-31)

Bottom Line: May you be a neighbor wherever you may be and there is someone near you. And, may you love your neighbor as yourself.