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How to Prepare to Meet Jesus

09/16/2019

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Do you “clean up” before something important? Maybe we have a job interview or are going to a wedding or out with friends. Do we shower and put on clean clothes? Of course we do.  We prepare for the one we’re meeting. One of Jesus’s beloved followers tells believers in 1 John 3:3 that we should prepare for when we meet Jesus in heaven. “Everyone who has this hope fixed on Him (Jesus) purifies himself, just as He is PURE.” But hasn’t Jesus already made us pure? Yes. Jesus washes us and cleanses of our sins when we repent and confess Him as Lord.  But John makes the point that as God’s children, we should anticipate meeting Christ and therefore guard against daily sin. If we knew we would meet Jesus in the next few moments what might we do in preparation? Right a relationship? Apologize to someone? Say “no” to a sinful habit?  The fact is, we will soon meet Jesus.  How might we “purify ourselves” in readiness to see our risen Lord?

Lord Jesus, You are PURE and we desire to be pure. Forgive our sin. Fill us with Your pure, Holy Spirit.  

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When You’re At the End of You

09/15/2019

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“I can’t be the Christian I’m supposed to be. I can’t overcome this sin.” Have you ever said those words?  If we sometimes feel incapable of being the Christian we want to be, we’re not alone. The Apostle Paul, who was instrumental in helping spread Christianity, once referred to himself as the chief of sinners. Here’s the good news. God knows that we can’t live the Christian life by self effort. That’s why He reminds us in Galatians 3:5 that He’s provided us with His Holy Spirit. We don’t please God by trying to improve our old self. We please God by learning to walk by faith in Him. We’re not short on godly provisions. Instead of saying we can’t live the Christian life or we can’t accomplish what God’s entrusted to us to do, we can ask Christ to fill us and accomplish His work through us. Then, we can practice walking by the Spirit. Will we walk by the Spirit perfectly 100% of the time? No, because as long as we’re in our human bodies, our fleshly nature will oppose the Spirit. (Galatians 5:17) and we’ll continue to struggle against spiritual forces of darkness/wickedness (Ephesians 6:12) because Satan is the ruler of this world. (John 14:30) Practice walking by Christ’s Spirit knowing that God is at work perfecting us. 

Lord, thank You for PROVIDING us with Your Spirit by whom we can walk and fulfill the work You entrust us to do. 

“…does He who PROVIDES you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?”

Galatians 3:5

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When You Fear for Your Loved Ones

09/14/2019

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Does the prevalence of evil in our society cause you to be fearful for loved ones? Recently, after speaking at a church, a mom confided in me that she feared for her child. Part of her fear was because she had been molested as a child. Part was due to the moral decline in our nation. What hope was I able to give her?

PRAYER:  Jesus teaches us to pray, “Do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” We can pray that daily for our loved ones.

THE BIBLE. The Bible is a safeguard that teaches us what to do and not do. We can teach our children to respect and obey God and His Word.

ETERNAL SALVATION.  We can’t escape all evil influences, but, 2 Thessalonians 3:3 comforts us that the Lord is faithful, and will strengthen and PROTECT us from the evil one.

Thank You, Heavenly Father, for Your Word that shows us how to live, for being able to pray to You, and for Christ’s faithfulness to strengthen and protect us. 

“But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and PROTECT you from the evil one.”

2 Thessalonians 3:3

Record prayers for loved ones here  as a reminder of God’s faithfulness.

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When You’ve Failed and Are Low

09/13/2019

Things aren’t always what they seem.  And, simply because things appear one way in a moment of time, it doesn’t mean they’ll stay that way.  Case in point: Jesus. If we’d been in Jerusalem when Jesus was hanging on the cross, we might have labeled the moment, “Jesus failed.”  However, what appeared to be Jesus’s lowest moment, was in fact, God’s highest plan being accomplished. Three days after Jesus’s death on the cross, God raised Him. As Isaiah 52:13 prophesied, “Behold, My servant will prosper, He will be HIGH and LIFTED UP and greatly exalted.” Jesus is seated at the right hand of God – HIGH AND LIFTED UP – greatly exalted. The next time you feel like a failure, look heavenward and pray. God can change things; even us and our situations.

We praise You, Lord Jesus, HIGH and LIFTED UP; greatly exalted. 

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How to Satisfy God

09/12/2019

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Are you familiar with the Rolling Stones’ 1965 song “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”?  Songwriters Keith Richards and Mick Jagger poured forth how they couldn’t “get no satisfaction.” The words resonated with people in the sixties and also with people today. But do you know who has found satisfaction? God. First John 2:2 says, “He (Jesus) Himself is the PROPITIATION FOR OUR SINS; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.”  The word propitiation means satisfaction. This verse tells us that Jesus satisfied God on our behalf. He offered His perfect life as a substitute for ours and that satisfied God. How incredible! If we haven’t thanked Jesus lately, now would be a good time to do that. 

Jesus, thank You for sacrificing Your life as the propitiation for our sins.

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9/11

09/11/2019

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September 11, 2001, Al Qaeda terrorists hijacked three planes and flew them into the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington D.C., killing everyone on board the planes and nearly 3,000 people on the ground. A fourth plane crashed into a Pennsylvania field, killing all on board, after passengers and crew heroically attempted to take control from the hijackers. Evil reigned in the hands of the terrorists that day. But evil didn’t ultimately win. Christ Jesus overcame death. All who place their faith in Christ will live eternally in His glorious presence. We remember with gratefulness our loved ones and friends who sacrificed their lives for our nation. We remember with gratefulness the Lord Jesus who sacrificed His life for the purification of our souls.

Lord Jesus, who made PURIFICATION OF OUR SINS we love and praise You. Thank You for the ultimate sacrifice of Your life to make us pure as You are pure. 

“When He had made PURIFICATION of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,”

Hebrews 1:3

When You’re Tired of Failed Promises

09/10/2019

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Have you ever promised something and then didn’t fulfill your promise? If you have, you know what a horrible feeling it is. Maybe we promised, “I’ll never say that again.” Then we did. Or, maybe we said to God, “I promise if you get me out of this mess, I’ll do better next time.” Then we failed to do as we said. Or, maybe we don’t trust people because they’ve made promises to us they didn’t keep. When it comes to God, however, Romans 4:21 assures us “that what God PROMISED, He was able also to perform.” In other words, other people, or we, may be well intentioned, but fail. Not God, though. What He promises, He will do. What a blessing to know that God keeps His promises.  In the midst of failed promises and lies, it’s a great time for us to read God’s promises in the Bible.  We can smile as we read them because we know they are true. Which of God’s promises are your favorites? Please let me know in the “Comment” section below. I’d love to hear from you.

Heavenly Father, in a world that is filled with lies failed promises, we praise You for being a faithful promise keeper.  

Why Jesus Instead of a Psychic Reader

09/09/2019

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Have you ever called the psychic hotline or used Tarot cards to find out your future? If so, you’ll be encouraged to know there’s a better option. Ezekiel 13:7 tells us that rather than seek knowledge by means of divination such as Tarot cards or a psychic hotline, to look to “…Jesus the Nazarene, who was a PROPHET mighty in deed and word in the sight of God and all the people,” Luke 24:19. Yes, in love, God tells us to look to Jesus and the Bible for wisdom, insight, and comfort. When we yearn to know the future and what to do, we are to read the Bible and to pray, “Lord, direct me.” Jesus is the One we are to seek. He is the One we can trust.

CHECK OUT:  Prayers for Different Occasions

Jesus, You are God’s PROPHET who speaks truth. May we seek and obey You. 

If You Feel Like a Ragamuffin

09/08/2019
Do you ever feel like a ragamuffin; in other words, disheveled, poorly treated, or overlooked; a modern day Cinderella? Everyone knows her story. Countless versions of it have been written and made into movies. Why is it such a popular theme? If you’re a guy, the prince, you get your bride. If you’re the girl, you get swooped off your feet by the rich lord of the land and live happily ever after in a palace in a kingdom. Guess what. If we’ve confessed Jesus as Lord, Cinderella’s story is ours.  Isaiah 9:6 tells us that Jesus is the PRINCE of peace. Not only that, He’s chosen us ragamuffins to be His bride. Our Prince is coming for us and we will live happily ever after in His kingdom. That’s a big hallelujah!

Jesus, PRINCE OF PEACE, thank You for coming to earth and taking us as Your bride. We can’t wait to come to Your glorious kingdom and live happily ever after with You. 

“His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,Eternal Father, PRINCE OF PEACE.” Isaiah 9:6

Double Jeopardy

09/07/2019

HAPPENING NOW: WV P.R.A.Y. with Passion Across the Nation Conf. THANK YOU for your PRAYERS!

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Have you heard of the legal term “double jeopardy”? In our legal system it means that a person can’t be tried for the same crime two times. In God’s system, it means the same; which is an incredible blessing. Jesus was tried for all the sins we’ve ever committed and will commit. God has promised to not try us for our sins that Jesus has already been convicted of and paid the debt. As if that’s not enough of a huge eternal blessing and relief, there’s more! Hebrews 2:17 explains that after Jesus took our place and died for our sins, He assumed the role of High Priest and entered into God’s presence to offer His blood as the sacrifice for our sin. Jesus demonstrated the greatest of mercy when He took our place at the judgement seat and was convicted for our crimes. We can’t be tried again for our sins because Jesus was tried for them, found guilty, and sentenced to death. Resurrected, He sits as God’s right hand praying for us. Run to Him in gratitude. Live for Him in joy.

Lord Jesus, we praise You, our Lord and high PRIEST!  Thank You for taking our place at the judgement seat and dying for our sins.  How can we serve You?

“Therefore, He (Jesus) had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high PRIEST in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.”

I’m writing in my gratitude JOURNAL, “Thk You, Lord, Sins PAID!”