Feast or famine


This saying has almost become cliche’ today and they use it for so many things until the meaning is almost lost to the younger generation. In the world both of these are easy to recognize and their meanings are very clear. Feast is when things are going really well and you have money and enough food to eat. Even your career is going well when you are feasting.

Famine, on the other hand is when things are not going well at all. Your home is being foreclosed and taken from you, you’ve lost your job and there is no money for food. You may even be living in a place where there has been a famine in more ways than one and people are starving to death.

But what if you applied these terms to your spiritual life? How would you read them and assign meaning to them then? Does feast refer to the days that you attend church with other believers? Does that mean that you don’t seek God counsel during the week, so you are going through a famine in your spiritual life between Sabbath’s? Christians are not supposed to live their spiritual lives this way.

Yes, you do go to a worship service to be fed the Word and taught about it but when you leave then you are supposed to fellowship with God until the next time. The disciples didn’t just meet up with Jesus on those days when He was teaching in the synagogue. They were with Him every day regardless of which direction He was going or who they might meet. They were near Him day and night so they heard His teachings every day not just weekly or once a month.

John even wrote in his gospel, “if all of the things were written about Him that He did, the world could not contain the books“. I paraphrased John’s words but you get the idea. Jesus did many miracles that we will never know about until we are with Him. But living a Christian life in “feast or famine” mode is not the way to live in Christ and Christ in you! The Holy Spirit, the third of the Trinity, is with you from the time you are saved. You have a member of the Trinity living with you, inside you and He is every bit as much God as the Father and the Son are. I don’t think that we consider that we have a part of the Creator Who teaches you about Jesus and helps you to understand His Word.

Living the sanctified life of a Christian, saved by His Grace, would not be possible if the Holy Spirit wasn’t there to show us and teach us when we are reading and learning from God’s Word. We wouldn’t act as a Christian in the slightest degree if it weren’t for the Spirit touching us and teaching us when we are tempted to do something we shouldn’t! God gives us the strength and His Spirit to be able to make it one day at a time in our walk with Him and that is what we should do. Get through today, then study God’s Word a bit tonight, then get through tomorrow and so on until we are called home.

PS: If there are any prayer requests or something that you would like for me to pray about, anything at all, leave a comment. I will add your request to the others that I get from the community.

Everyday life


We live each day according to what we have learned in our life. We may live according to what we were taught by our parents or grandparents or according to what we have learned from going to church and reading our Bibles. Some people claim that life doesn’t have a guidebook or an instruction manual but God’s Word is the best manual for living and how to live that I have ever seen or read.

But there are many times in our lives when we can’t find the answer to our problem. Sometimes it escapes us in one way or another. We ask “Why did this happen?” and we can’t find the answer or if we ask God that question…He is either silent or we may not be listening closely enough. Those times cause us to doubt our faith and they can cause us to doubt God too.

Why? It is a very small question but sometimes the answer is not small if it comes at all. The answer can be a diagnosis which a mother or father is not prepared for. The outcome of this diagnosis may be a child which is unable to ever enjoy life again or enjoy anything about life. So what do we do then? Are we supposed to give up on God’s promises of healing and restoration?

God doesn’t make that promise of healing and restoration for every person in the world! If you seek Him in your need and your feelings of grief over a child who is suffering from an accident or even a disease please seek God’s answer and LISTEN to Him. Many of us would rather have our child back or our spouse back, healthy and whole with no problems but consider that God’s healing may take the form of their passing from this life into the next with Him.

While this outcome is not the perfect outcome in our own view, God may truly have something else which is much better. But…we must be willing to truly listen to Him and not to our own voice echo in our head telling us what we want to hear rather than what is good for our child or our spouse or even the decision which is truly in God’s hands.

The problem with waiting for God’s leading and His voice is that we usually try to go around God and get things done the way we want them to be. We don’t want to wait on God but we want the solution right NOW! Life’s troubles and trials are rarely cut neatly with our ideas in mind so that a visit to the hospital turns out as a blessing. Many times it comes with tremendous bills and stress and the possible outcomes which may or may not be the one which we want in our lives.

These are the times when life seems to be broken and there is no amount of glue or tape which can un-break it. Sometimes even our technology can do more harm by keeping a loved one alive but are they really? They are breathing and they may react to some stimulus but if they are unable to live…is that really living?

Pray for those in the hospitals or in nursing homes that are in a coma or a state which, if given a chance, they would likely not want to “live” in. I pray that no mother or father reading this will ever have to go through this type of decision because even though I can write this advice down,  but if it were my son it would truly be heartbreaking to have to make that life-altering decision. He has told me if that ever happens don’t let me live in a coma not knowing what is going on or who is around me. But even with his instructions, it would still break my heart.

Is your church part of the problem?


In many churches today, especially within a fifty-mile radius of my home, many visitors feel unwanted and unwelcome. Why is this? Mostly because our churches have become social meeting places rather than places to meet and worship God and Jesus. My church and yours should be places to fall in love with our Savior, but more often than not we talk more about politics and government issues and who should be added to our prayer list this week. Granted, many who are truly in need of prayer for healing and comfort NEED our prayers each and every day.

But the political issues in our government and how it is being run should be part of our prayer ministry, not a part of the commentary and debate in church or Bible study time.

Is the church part of the problem in America today? In some cases…yes it is. We are more concerned about the color of the carpet in the sanctuary and how it looks than we are about drawing more people into the church to hear about salvation through Jesus! So, what can we do about our relationship with Him? I mean, it is our relationship with Jesus which we are supposed to be giving away or at least showing people a Savior that they need to get to know!

Why are churches turning away from their “first love” and trying to be everything to everyone these days? It seems that some churches are trying to attract more people to church just for the numbers in attendance. Having a large number of people attending church is good, but if the message is more fluff than it is substance pertaining to salvation through Jesus, then the message is wrong!

Having 300 or more people attending church every Sunday is great but if you aren’t preaching the love of Jesus and the salvation which He died to provide for those who will believe, then you just have a full church. IF you aren’t following up with those who have attended your services to find out where their beliefs are or if they need prayer for specific problems in life, then you aren’t doing your job as a church. When I say this, I don’t mean that the preacher has to be the one following up with the people. It is the responsibility of those who are Christians in the church who should be doing this as well as the preacher!

Even a full-time preacher can’t reach out and touch every person who has visited your church or has asked for prayer. The only way that we, as a church, can take care of those in the congregation and those who have visited but haven’t decided to be a part of your church is for the deacons and the elders in the church to go to them and invite them back. If they are searching for Jesus, they will feel His presence in those who are inviting them back IF you are doing it in the power of Christ and with His love shining through.

Numbers and the amount which is given during the offering are not the way which measures a church and its commitment to following Jesus. Telling others about Him, mentoring those who are new to the faith, Bible study and helping others to grow in their walk with Jesus are the ways which the church continues to be the true church in the world today! Praying for each other’s burdens, listening to their concerns about being a Christian and living your walk with Him every day is the way to walk the walk so others might want to know Him too.

Many of these things are what our churches need to be doing but few actually are doing them and doing them effectively.

Jesus loves….me!


I sang along with the children in my church this morning and we sang “Jesus loves me”. It is a very fitting song for Christmas because that is the reason He came to be our Savior! This season is known for excess spending and all sorts of commercial excesses in sales and marketing and all sorts of product placement, etc.

Why can’t we place our Savior at the center of this celebration? We have the freedom to worship Him, yet we change the names of trees that are bought for this time of year. We say “Happy Holidays” instead of Merry Christmas so we don’t offend a few people! The freedom to worship God was the reason which began the journey to this country for many people, so why should we have to give up or limit our freedoms now because of a minority of people who may be offended?

God’s love is so great for each of us that He sent Jesus to be born in Bethlehem and grow up under Jewish law to save His people. When they refused to see Him as their Messiah, the offer of salvation was expanded to the entire world! There have been many stumbles and mishaps along the way to bring Jesus’ gift of salvation to every nation. Some of them very tragic and costly in lives and property and those damages can’t be undone from a cultural standpoint.

Just as the results of wars cannot be undone and the effect of words on different parties can’t be unsaid to remove the hurt and the pain they have caused, Christian history cannot be changed either. But, there have been many good things which have come from the spreading of the gospel in the world. People have come to know Jesus as their Savior who wouldn’t have had that chance if we had not followed the Lord’s command to go into all the world and tell others about Him.

God loves you and every person on this planet and He wants you to come to know Jesus as your Savior. The extent of His love and compassion is unknowable because God is infinite in knowledge and power, but of all the people on Earth who can be effective in His Kingdom, one of you who reads this can do something which no other person in the world can do! You can reach your children or maybe your nephews and nieces when nobody else can. You may be able to reach your family in ways that nobody other than you can do. God knows all of these facts and He can use your talents because He gave them to you.

Don’t consider that your talent or gift is not useful to God or useful in His Kingdom because He wouldn’t have given it to you if you couldn’t use it. Seek Him out in all that you do, ask for the ability to use your gift to bring someone to Christ because that is the most wonderful gift of all and it doesn’t cost you anything.

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Anger or compassion


thereasonforourproblemsWe live every day with the consequences of one or the other, the outcome depends upon which one is more prevalent in our lives. Is it anger and our temper or do we live a life of service to others and showing compassion toward their problems? Do you worry more about your own problems and troubles? Most of us do exactly that. We worry about our lives and our finances and many other problems, most of which we can do nothing constructive about.

Life is given to each of us to bring glory to God, not to our own life or for our own selfish needs or wants. God gives us the necessary abilities to accomplish everything that He has intended for us to do. We should depend upon Him and His provisions for us, whether it is in the form of money or talent, to be able to accomplish the task He has given to us. Finding out that task is our job, to work toward being close enough to God so that we can discern His will for us.

How do we do this? By reading the Bible with an attitude of prayer and seeking His will for our life. Read a chapter then ask God to reveal His wisdom in what you just read. Ask Him to show you what His wisdom means in this chapter and how it applies to your life and ministry. It doesn’t matter which book you are reading or what chapter it may be. It could be in Genesis or Psalms or Matthew or even in Revelation.

The point is that whatever you read, ask God to show you what His wisdom is in the scripture. I have found that it doesn’t matter how many times you read a book or chapter in God’s Word, you will get a different meaning almost every time you read it. Why is that? Because God’s Word is a living document which reads you and your Spirit as you read it. Actually, it is God’s Spirit which inspired the Word of God in the Bible which is reading you and your soul.

I know that many will read this and call it crazy or something like that, but if you ask a preacher or an evangelist about what they get out of reading and studying the Bible, you will get many different answers. By that, I mean that each time you read the same passage, if you are reading it to learn from God’s wisdom, you will get a little different message than you did the last time. I have only read the Bible through about seven or eight times and each time I will get a slightly different message from the last time I read it.

God knows you so much better than you do and His Word speaks to those differences however slight they are or what those emotional or life experiences might be. His Word speaks in His voice to your soul, your spirit and it is that part of you which hears the different messages or teachings which come from the study of His Word.