What are you worth?


In our economy of excess people are judged to be wealthy when they have lots of land or cattle and/or a thriving business. Many are looked on as well off when they don’t have any bills or their debts are paid on time. But…this is the world’s way of looking at wealth. While these may give you freedom and peace of mind and it certainly would in this life, what kind of treasure (wealth) have you laid up in Heaven for eternity?

Your “net worth” in this life is only important to those in your family, as long as you have your priorities in the right order. But if you are chasing wealth on Earth to the exclusion of your life with your family, what are you really doing? In reality you are throwing away much of your wealth while chasing after stuff which is temporary and only worth something here and now.

While it is true that income or wealth does help us in this life with our bills and our needs, many look at it as if it solves far more than it really does. Truly, it tends to bring more “friends” into our life than we would normally have. But just as the prodigal son found out, when the money is gone so are those “friends”. Life is full of trials and tribulations both good and bad but when your wealth is anchored in Jesus and in His Kingdom this life and its trouble cannot take your joy from you. Many things could be taken from you such as your car or your job but the rewards of your life of service to God cannot be taken from you.

He is your strength and your shield. He is your buckler and your sword. He provides all that you need to serve Him until that day that you are called home to your eternal reward in His house. Seek Him and pray about your own life and the lives of those closest to you so when that day comes which comes to us all at the end, He will welcome you home to a place that cannot be taken from you.

God knows you so get to know Him.

God is able!


If you are wondering whether God will show up during your problem…don’t. He is already there. His strength and ability to take care of the problem is already available to you…just pray. God did not leave Noah, He didn’t leave Moses, and He never left David or Daniel and Jesus was never alone on that cross! Your disease or cancer or whatever it may be is not strong enough to give God any trouble at all. He created ALL things therefore He can cure and fix anything.

If your life has taken a turn toward a place that you don’t want to go, put your trust in the One Who can lead you toward the Light of God’s love because He is Love personified! In the form of Jesus the Son of God He did everything that He can do now and He is able to take your situation and turn it into a winning one for you and for His glory.

God said, “Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house. Test Me in this,” says the LORD of Hosts. “See if I will not open the windows of heaven and pour out for you blessing without measure….” Malachi 3:10 Put your faith in Him because He can do this! It is true that God was speaking of bringing a tithe into the storehouse of the Temple, but you could tithe your time or yourself as well and claim this promise of God. He can and will pour out blessings without measure but you have to place your faith in Him and in what He can do.

A prayer without faith to back it up and repentance in your life to show that you are serious will not work. God knows you and your heart and your motives better than you do so trying to “cut a deal” with God doesn’t work. You have to truly mean what you say and say what you mean!

Trust in Him to take care of you and He will because…our God is able!

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The I-phone person


In this day and age that we live in everyone has a phone. A connection to the Internet and to anyone that they want to reach out and touch. This is a period in time that many of us thought would never really happen…but it did. I’m not speaking of people who use and own Apple products. I am talking of people who can’t be themselves without their phone!

You’ve seen them or heard them in stores or on the street, at the gym or even at a movie. They can’t seem to stop talking! Sometimes you will be going through the grocery store and you will hear bits of a conversation and if you happen to keep running into that same person you will hear it until you decide to move away from them. It seems that they can’t get away from talking into their ear-buds which are attached to their phone either by a wire or wireless.

Many times I have wondered how they can get any sleep? Or even if they sleep, do they talk in their sleep? Is their phone always as close by them at home the same way it is out in public?

How much would the world change if we used our Bible as much as we do our phones? If we lived our daily lives in contact with God in the same way as we seem to be with our phone and our friends, we could impact the world for His Kingdom and it would make the world a better place. In the beginning, God did have a close relationship with Adam and Eve. He walked with them and taught them things, even though it isn’t written down in the Bible. I mean, how else were they going to learn?

God has always wanted a close relationship with us and at times He has had that with some of His prophets and disciples. But He wants that relationship with us today and we push Him away because we don’t have time or today isn’t a good day or some other excuse that is meaningless in the grand scheme of life. If we read the Bible as religiously as we read posts on Facebook or check it for advice like we check our emails, our world would be radically changed from the impersonal world that we live in to a world where God has more influence over all of our affairs.

Think about that today before you pick up your phone and pick up God’s Word a few times at least. Read some passages in Proverbs or Psalms today before you head out to shop or go to work. Pray about what you have read and think about what He says in those passages that you read. Then ask Him to show you the reason for your life being a little off balance and ask Him how it can be fixed. He will tell you, if you will stop talking long enough to listen.

Does this look familiar? I’m not talking about the brand of phone, just how many people live with them in their hands 24/7.

Do you live like Jonah?


In the book of Jonah, the prophet tries his best to run from God’s calling to take a message to Nineveh. Not because he doesn’t want to take the message, although that was part of it, but because he wants God’s judgment to fall on them rather than a revival coming to their country. He knows that God is merciful and He will forgive them if they turn from their sins and seek Him because of the warning that God told him to bring to the people of Nineveh.

Jonah 1:1-4 says:

1 Now the word of the LORD came to Jonah son of Amittai, saying, 2 “Get up! Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before Me.”

3 Jonah, however, got up to flee to Tarshish, away from the presence of the LORD. He went down to Joppa and found a ship bound for Tarshish. So he paid the fare and went aboard to sail for Tarshish, away from the presence of the LORD.

The Great Storm (Jeremiah 6:10-21; Jeremiah 25:15-33; Acts 27:13-26; Romans 1:18-32)

4 Then the LORD hurled a great wind upon the sea, and such a violent storm arose that the ship was in danger of breaking apart.

Wickedness or sin is lawlessness or transgressing the Law of God and it cannot be hidden or covered up, but we try to do this every day.

Proverbs 28: 13 says: 13 He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.

God is willing to forgive our sins regardless of their “size” because all sin is abhorrent to God and Jesus paid the price for our sins to cover them and forgive us of their consequences. We look at our sins and think that that “little white lie” isn’t so bad. Not nearly as bad as the man who has murdered someone at least. But in the eyes of God, even though murder is a more grievous sin, any sin weighs the same because it is a transgression of God’s laws. When you break one of His laws it is the same as breaking them all.

Any sin in your life that has not been confessed and forgiven puts a door or a barrier between you and God until it is confessed and forgiven. God warned Cain before he slew his brother that “sin is crouching at your door and it desires to have you, but you must rule over it. Genesis 4:7

God will judge our unacknowledged sins (Romans 2:16), “God will judge the secrets of man by Jesus Christ”. I know it sounds like a harsh comparison for mankind to be judged according to the sinless Son of God but we, as Christians, are supposed to walk in His ways and seek to live a holy life. In our humanity and by our own strength we can’t do this but by reading God’s Word daily and carefully taking each thought into captivity we can be effective witnesses for Him.

Hiding sins, whether they are “small sins” or “Big sins”, isn’t possible because God knows your heart and your mind. Even if you haven’t given your heart and life to Him, when you stand before Him to be judged, every word and thought will be brought out into the open. That is a scary thing to consider since we rarely have complete control over our thoughts and many times we say things which we should’ve thought about first (but we don’t) and we end up with our foot in our mouth. In God’s economy and under His Laws, every sin weighs the same. We consider some as small and some as big but to Him they are all spots and blemishes on your record and they hinder you from enjoying life as He wants you to.

In this life…


As we trudge through this pain-filled life we can see all sorts of contrasts on TV and in the news and sometimes in books too. Here is a quote from a book that I bought and have been reading and it sums up the ending of our lives or the beginning because it is all a matter of perspective.

“There were two friends who had lived long lives. One was a rich man, by the world’s standards, and the other didn’t have much. The rich man was not a Christian but the other man was a strong believer in Jesus. The rich man told one of his visitors one day: I will soon have to leave all of my riches but when he dies, he will gain his.” (quoted from “Where I am” by Billy Graham)

I did paraphrase it a bit but the meaning is clear. The rich man knew that his reward had been granted to him while he was living but the poor man had stored his riches and wealth in Jesus. So the one that the world considered poor was actually rich into eternity. Why do we live like this? Because we want things in this life and many of us don’t look much further than our bank account. But, if you find someone living on Social Security as their “pension”, you will find someone who usually depends on God for their existence. They know that the money will run out most of the time before the month.

Why are there more Christians in China and Africa than there are in America? Because the vast majority of people in those countries live on a fraction of what Americans have, that’s why! Those Christians depend upon their Savior not only because He has given them eternity but because they know that He will meet their needs every day. Some days they will have just enough to make it and maybe tomorrow they might have a little surplus but they will share that with their friends and family. If the church in every country could teach that principle to all believers what a wonderful world we would have.

Jesus told His disciples that “you will have trials in this world, but I have overcome the world“. God never told us in His Word that we would have it easy if we would give our lives to serving Him. Actually, He said just the opposite. Many who are looking for a better life would jump at the chance of an easy life if being a Christian meant that it would be granted to them but that has never been part of the “blessing” since Jesus returned to the Father. God does give us the strength to endure those trials through faith in Jesus but we must seek Him in our good times as well as when things aren’t going so good.

Living the life of a faithful Christian is like a toddler holding your hand while walking on a trail which has some rough areas to cross. The “toddler” Christian will hold “God’s” hand until the trail gets a bit easier to handle then want to run ahead but that is where we need to hold His hand to keep us on the right path even more. Because sometimes when we find a smooth path we also find other “paths” which are even better and easier to navigate and it is tempting to follow those easier paths rather than staying on the pathway that we were following God on. That’s when we get into trouble and have to be led through some bushes and thorns to get back where we should’ve stayed.

Honor God daily


Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. (Ecclesiastes 5:2)

Luke 11: 2-4 2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so on earth. 3 Give us day by day our daily bread. 4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

In Jesus’ model prayer in Luke, we are told to honor our Father in heaven, but do we? Are we really honoring God as Jesus tells us to do or are we just saying words which we have memorized? In Ecclesiastes, Solomon tells us that we should be careful of saying anything from our own mind when we come before God. Why is this? Because God is our Creator and our Provider and it is from His hand of grace and mercy that we live and breathe. While it is true that people haven’t dropped dead because of their words or their lack of respect for God, at least since the time of the apostles. We should honor God and Jesus with our words and our lives.

Think about Who it is that we are speaking of in this instance. We are talking about GOD and His Son, Jesus! The Creator of All that is or ever has been in the entire universe. We aren’t talking about Joe or Bob that we went to school with. Sometimes we give more respect and honor to our grandparents or military veterans than we give to God and that is wrong.

Do you realize that God gives you the air that you breathe and He keeps all of the physical processes going which allows you to think and eat and walk each and every day of your life? With a thought, He could end your life as it is. He could extinguish the Sun if He wished and we would truly see what an ice age would be like because the oceans would freeze solid. Our lives are only ours because God wants us to be here doing the things which we are doing! It isn’t because we are great and wonderful people or some magnificent accomplishments that we have done! He is the reason that we have the ability and the knowledge to be able to do what we do!

God loves us so much that Jesus had to come to Earth and die a horrible death in order to pay for our sins…all of our sins! He did this because He loves each one of us, not because He had to. Jesus could not even pray that “model prayer” because He didn’t have any sins to be forgiven of. It shows us how to pray because we are supposed to give praise to God first and honor Him before we ever say anything about our needs or our sins. Praying that prayer as a “prayer” is like repeating a formula or a recipe. It has all of the elements but it lacks the specifics for us.

I don’t mean that the model prayer is anything less than perfect, but if you pray it exactly the way that Jesus said to, then it is not specific to your needs. He said this is how you should pray, not what you should pray. It is the model of your prayers and mine. Give God His glory and His honor in the beginning of the prayer, repent of your sins and ask for His forgiveness and then seek His wisdom for what you are in need of, then thank God for His mercy and grace that you can bring your prayer to His throne. God already knows what we need, but like an Earthly father, He wants to hear His children come to Him and ask for their needs in humility and faith.

Friends…


Are you a friend to somebody? Do you have many friends that you actually know? Or are you more like me, you have friends that you have known for a long time but life and distance keep you from seeing each other? Many of us are in the same place that I am. We do have friends and have had some for many years but circumstances and distance tend to make the relationship kinda hard to keep alive. Even my relationship with some of my family is tempered by distance and our ability to bridge that distance is tempered by money and time as well.

In many ways, our relationship with Jesus sometimes falls into this same rut. We get caught up in life and our own problems and we push our time with Jesus and His Word to the back of our priority list. Then, sometimes, it gets pushed a little bit more. Then one day we realize that we truly miss our relationship with our Savior and we come back to Him apologizing for being away for so long. Why? Because it was us who moved, Jesus has always been near us. If we are Christians, His Spirit is still there even if we aren’t paying any attention to Him. This happens more often than we would like to admit…to anyone.

Sometimes we get a bit too open with our words and our “opinions” and we hurt each other’s feelings. Sometimes I feel like we do the same thing to Jesus as well, but He forgives us even when we do it more than we should. The best thing that we can remember about friendships is: don’t treat your regular friends like you treat Jesus. Because we take Him for granted all of the time and we should never take our friends for granted. God gave us friends to be there when we need them because until He comes to rule this Earth He isn’t physically here. So our friends are there to be “stand-ins” for Him.

Make sure which friends you have and always treasure their friendship like you would a brother or a sister because in Christ we are all brothers and sisters.

Wisdom comes from God


It seems that many people place their “faith” in books and degrees and they seem to think that the wisdom that they have came from those achievements. Some of it did, at least the mankind of wisdom comes from books and degrees. But what about your common sense? What about the value and wisdom which comes from reading God’s Word?

I’ve heard that there are some who seem to be lacking in the “common sense” department but have you ever thought that their version of common sense may just be different from yours? It may not be the same or work in the same fashion as yours does but it is likely that they have a special case of common sense which fits their position and purpose in this life. Why do I say this? Because God is the One Who gives out “common sense” and I don’t think He makes mistakes.

There are too many physical properties of our universe which have to be so in tune for life to exist to say that God could make a mistake like not giving someone any common sense. He doesn’t make mistakes. But, we seem to want Him to be more like us instead of the other way around. I don’t want God to be like us at all! If He were like us, I’m sure we would not be here!

All of the wisdom in the world was given to us from God. I don’t think that He quit speaking through people just because it isn’t canonized and included in the Bible. What about all of the Christian literature which has His wisdom included in it? True, some of the inclusions are direct quotes from the Bible but there is other wisdom in those books which did not come from the Bible and it is just as wise and true as if Paul wrote it. Do we look down on it because it is “man’s” wisdom rather than from God? How do you know that the Holy Spirit didn’t inspire them to write it? He could be giving me these words too and frankly, I think He always has because I’ve never been a person who talks a lot.

Writing here is my witness to others who may never get to a Christian church and I stand by that conviction. I do believe that the Holy Spirit gives me the words to say here, so please take the time to read His wisdom in these words because I’m not trying to convince you of anything other than the fact that Jesus is the Christ and He is the only Savior Who can save you from your sins and pardon you so you can enter into eternity with Him.

We are destroying our minds


 Scripture — in both the Old and New Testaments — warns us against investing in things which cannot give us anything in return, in pouring our affections and attentions toward the worthless and temporal. Much of that is what many people are doing today. Looking at their phones and at games and tablets. Liking this and texting that and commenting on the new dress that someone bought that you don’t even know. Sometimes praying for people who are hurting from the loss of a loved one but most of the time we spend useless hours looking at things which have no real value to us in this world or for the next one.

Can we get away from this destructive addiction to Snap chat or Facebook? Can we get away from any one of a number of “social media” platforms which are taking too much of our attention away from God and His purpose for our lives? Yes we can but for some it will be a very hard break from a platform which has consumed our attention morning and night for many years. It really is an addiction when you look at it that way and it is getting worse. How can we move back to our lives which we enjoyed before the Internet and Facebook came along? Truthfully, many young people won’t be able to. They have grown up from the time that they could hold a phone or tablet until they are nearing pre-teen years and TV and movies just don’t have the same impact on their lives as their social media does.

They don’t look at it as an addiction but that is exactly what it is. Anything that you begin your day with and go through your day with very little break from it and then you take it to bed with you…I would call that an addiction. It isn’t drugs or anything like that but the opinions and ideas that you are exposed to all day every day get into your mind and into your thought patterns. Eventually those ideas will become your ideas and your opinions.

Christians are supposed to meditate on God’s Word and read it daily so that we can protect our minds from the temptations of life and those from Satan as well. We are not immune from those and if we don’t have God’s Word in our mind, helping us to resist those temptations to say something or do something that we shouldn’t then he will be victorious over our witness. I would rather be addicted to reading God’s Word than to any social media that is available today. Follow Jesus and read His Word because there is at least one person that you will meet tomorrow who needs to hear about your Lord and Savior!

Who are you?


Have you ever wondered this to yourself? Who am I? I don’t know you, but God does. Have you ever thought about that? Why would God want to know me or love me? I’ll tell you why…because He LOVES you! He has loved you and me and everyone else who has ever lived with a love that we can’t understand. Because He is our Creator! He knit your molecules together in such a way that there is no other person nor has there ever been another person exactly like you!

Who are we? If you are a believer in Jesus as your Savior, then you are a child of God and an heir to everything that God wants to give you and He will give it to you. When it is His time to do so. We want it now, today, but God knows that much of His love and the blessings which He has prepared for you and me are not useful right now. Our heavenly home is waiting for us but we can’t live in it right now. The horse that we will ride behind Jesus is waiting in heaven for us but we can’t ride him or her right now. The city which has streets of gold is there but we can’t experience it until we are there. We are blessed and loved and highly favored in God’s sight but we won’t know how much until we get there.

We are blessed and loved and sanctified in Jesus and we are each part of God’s family and it will be a BIG family gathering one day. When that day comes, the world will mourn our disappearance but we will be in the most wonderful place in the universe! We will be with God! How amazing will that be? Living in heaven with our Father, our Creator and our Savior for eternity. Will we be doing anything? Of course we will. God doesn’t save you from the punishment of hell and then condemn you to a life of boredom. We will be working for Him in every capacity that He can give us the ability to do. Consider Who He is. Our Creator and our redeemer. We will have any ability that He wants us to have whether we lived that way in this life or not. Whether we have been a leader or a carpenter or a welder or a police person or a doctor, God can give each of us the knowledge and ability to do His will all through eternity and He will!

Who are you? We are whoever God says we are. We are able to be whatever He says we can be. We are able to do whatever He says we can because He loves us and He never leaves us. He is our Creator and our Redeemer and He is able to give us abilities which we would never have unless He gave them to us and gave us the knowledge to accomplish them. We are His children and we need to be grateful and thankful for each breath we take. Yes, we are loved and we are forgiven and we are His!

Who am I? I am in Christ!

Amen!