Are you following Jesus?

In the church today there are many who claim to be following Him, but are they really? The path which is required for us to follow is usually one which is narrow and littered with stones and thorns at times. We have to constantly watch our footing while walking the pathway or we will stumble and fall. Does that cause us to lose our salvation? No, of course not, if it is real and true salvation.

There have been many people who have had emotional experiences at a revival meeting or a gathering where God’s Word is preached and they thought that this was a real experience with Jesus. Why do I bring it up? It’s because after a while they begin to live their lives just like they did before, with no discernable change in their behavior.

Bridge2SalvationA real salvation experience begins with the Holy Spirit convicting you of your need for Jesus. Then you act on that need by confessing your sinful nature and asking Him to come into your heart and change you into the sanctified person which God knows you can be. When that change occurs, there is no doubt about the real change which happens. While it may take a while for you to shed your old ways, the Holy Spirit will convict you when you are doing something outside of God’s will for your life. Therefore, you will not go back to your “old ways”, at least not permanently.

Will you stumble and fall off of the path? Yes! It is likely that you will stumble many times, but as long as you get up, ask forgiveness and start again to follow Jesus with prayer and reading the Bible, you will get back on the pathway. It is a process which brings your nature into alignment with the will and nature of Jesus. This doesn’t happen immediately or overnight, but it will happen if you keep seeking His wisdom and praying for His strength in your daily walk with Him.

When you feel the Spirit touch your spirit and you know that you need Him, God has placed a call on you and it has been there since you were born. You may not feel it or notice it for many years or you may submit to it as soon as you do feel it, whatever your age is when that happens. Each of us has a talent and some gifts from God which He has given to us to perform our role in His Kingdom. We won’t find out about them until we are a part of His Kingdom and He may give us more talents to use after we accept His gift of salvation.

Each one of us is known by God even before we are born and He knows what we are capable of doing and being in His Kingdom because He placed those gifts and talents within us before our birth. I pray that anyone who reads this will seek Jesus and learn of His sacrifice for each of us then ask Him to come into your life and make you into the person which you were meant to be for the glory of God the Father!

Are you ready?

For years people have been wondering when the end of the age will be and when will Jesus return? His return to the Earth to rule as King will be after the Tribulation has run its course and that is very likely the end of the age if you are talking about the church age. We have been living in the church age since He went back to the right hand of the Father almost two thousand years ago and people have been looking for His return for most of that time.

heaven-or-hell-eternal-destinyGod has the plan in the works but there is no timetable that we can look at to know when because Jesus said that it would happen in a moment. He told His disciples that only the Father knows the day and the hour, so we don’t have access to that information. So…are you ready? Remember, the first indication of the Tribulation will be the church being taken into Heaven. All of those who have put their faith in Jesus, whether alive or dead, will be raised to immortality to meet Him in the clouds.

Some of the books and movies which have spoken about this have tried to show those souls as lights going up. The way that Jesus described it would show otherwise. He said that two will be sleeping and one will be taken and the other left. Two would be grinding meal, one will be taken the other left. In a moment, in the twinkle of your eye, like blinking and someone you were just talking to will be gone. Their clothes and shoes and all man-made material will be left in front of you, but they will be with Jesus.

This is not a joke and it isn’t a cop-out in life because when this happens there will be lots of pain and heartache in the world. Many people may be killed because of drivers or pilots who have been taken and their cars or planes don’t have anyone to control them anymore. So many will be trying to figure out what has happened and only those who have been to church or a Bible study and learned about the “end of the age” and Jesus will know. If they are still here they didn’t make the decision to give their heart to Jesus and they will know that also.

This time will be difficult and dangerous for those who know what happened but didn’t follow Jesus because they can’t tell anyone. They will not know who to trust at this point, even if they are friends or family. Those in charge will be offering rewards for Bibles and believers too. This is the real beginning of the Tribulation and it will only get worse for the next seven years from this point.

Please, don’t wait until these things are taking place to search for your Savior. You could find Him and get to know Him at this time but it will be harder and more dangerous. The world around you will not know Him nor will it accept your belief in Him. God loves you and has made a way for you to be saved now and it is through belief in Jesus and His atoning work on the cross! Make sure that you get to know Him soon because it is to your eternal advantage and for your home in Heaven!

Laugh a little

As much as the news bombards us with things which bring us down, it is good to find something to laugh about. Just as David danced and praised the Lord as they brought the Ark into Jerusalem, we should laugh and find joy in our days. I know it isn’t easy to do at times, with all of the news being confusing and bad, in ways that make you want to give up. Find little joys in your day like seeing a child having fun or a bird flying and living its life the way God intended. Seek out joy and it will find you.

Proverbs 17:22 A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

Life is too short to live with a sour face and a spirit which says to others “Leave me alone in my pain and sorrow!”. Children in happy homes find all sorts of imaginative things to do and be happy about. Unfortunately when we get older and have too many responsibilities, we lose that joy and wonder mostly because we don’t have time for it. Live…because you are designed for life and God gives you each day to enjoy every minute!

Lightning Storm Over City LightsLook at the stars, watch and sunrise or sunset and see the beauty of it, if you can watch a storm from a distance and see the dance of the electrical storm and the power in it. Above all…know that God loves you and has provided everything that you need in this life as a practice run for eternity! Run your race reaching for that goal of seeing your Savior and the reward of eternity after this life is finished!

Jesus in the Old and the New Testaments

God saysTo show how much God wanted us to see His Son in Scripture, just look to the Psalms:

1. The Messiah will be rejected by Gentiles (Psalm 2:1; Acts 4:25–28).
2. Political/religious leaders will conspire against the Messiah (Psalm 2:2 Matthew 26:3–4; Mark 3:6).
3. The Messiah will be King of the Jews (Psalm 2:6; John 12:12–13; 18:32).
4. The Messiah will be the Son of God (Psalm 2:7a; Luke 1:31–35; Matthew 3:16–17; Hebrews 1:5–6).
5. The Messiah will reveal that He is the Son of God (Psalm 2:7b; John 9:35–37).
6. The Messiah will be raised from the dead and be crowned King (Psalm 2:7c; Acts 13:30–33; Romans 1:3–4).
7. The Messiah will ask God for His inheritance (Psalm 2:8a; John 17:4–24).
8. The Messiah will have complete authority over all things (Psalm 2:8b; Matthew 28:18; Hebrews 1:1–2).
9. The Messiah will not acknowledge those who do not believe in Him (Psalm 2:12; John 3:36).
10. Infants will give praise to the Messiah (Psalm 8:2; Matthew 21:15–16).
11. The Messiah will have complete authority over all things (Psalm 8:6; Matthew 28:18).
12. The Messiah will be resurrected (Psalm 16:8–10a; Matthew 28:6; Acts 2:25–32).
13. The Messiah’s body will not see corruption (natural decay) (Psalm 16:8–10b; Acts 13:35–37).
14. The Messiah will be glorified into the presence of God (Psalm 16:11; Acts 2:25–33).
15. The Messiah will come for all people (Psalm 18:49; Ephesians 3:4–6).
16. The Messiah will cry out to God (Psalm 22:1a; Matthew 27:46).
17. The Messiah will be forsaken by God at His crucifixion (Psalm 22:1b; Mark 15:34).
18. The Messiah will pray without ceasing before His death (Psalm 22:2; Matthew 26:38–39).
19. The Messiah will be despised and rejected by His own (Psalm 22:6; Luke 23:21–23).
20. The Messiah will be made a mockery (Psalm 22:7; Matthew 27:39).
21. Unbelievers will say to the Messiah, “He trusted in God, let Him now deliver Him” (Psalm 22:8; Matthew 27:41–43).
22. The Messiah will know His Father from childhood (Psalm 22:9; Luke 2:40).
23. The Messiah will be called by God while in the womb (Psalm 22:10; Luke 1:30–33).
24. The Messiah will be abandoned by His disciples (Psalm 22:11; Mark 14:50).
25. The Messiah will be encompassed by evil spirits (Psalm 22:12–13; Colossians 2:15).

The last ten references to Psalm 22 refer to His arrest and crucifixion, this Psalm was written many centuries before crucifixion was ever used as a form of torture and death, but it describes it very literally. The Holy Spirit gave this Psalm to David and I am sure he wondered what did all of this mean. What it means to us is that God had already planned for this before the birth of Jesus or Mary or Joseph.

Nothing in our world happens without His hand in it or knowledge of it. Does God cause all of these bad things which happen to people, good or bad? No, but HE allows them to happen to bring His Glory into people’s lives as they turn to Him for answers! Satan’s time is running out and he knows it, so all of the evil and vile things that people are doing to each other and the torture which is going on in areas of the Middle East is all caused by or prompted by him and his demons and spirits.

God allows it to happen because it is part of the prophetic time-line which He saw thousands of years ago and He has known about it from even before the world was created. These things will happen without our involvement, including the melting of ice in the Arctic or the Antarctic as well as the storms and earthquakes which seem to be getting out of control…like things are coming apart.

Seek out your Creator and He can save your soul because He has already paid the price for you, all you need to do is believe in Him, in Jesus, and your eternity will be much better than the alternative.

End or beginning?

Humanity tends to look at life as that time which we have here on Earth and that it mostly ends when your life ends. Some believe in reincarnation, some believe that when you die that’s it and there is nothing more…but for a Christian this is just a rehearsal for our eternal life, the life that we will have with Jesus. The one that never ends and that we will be with Him and our Christian brothers and sisters forever. Does life end with your last breath? This physical life on Earth does, but if your heart belongs to Jesus then your spirit goes on to everlasting life in God’s home, Heaven.

I can’t tell you anything about that wonderful place beyond death, except the things which I have read or the descriptions found in the Bible. Even those descriptions pale because human sight and comprehension just aren’t enough to tell others about that which lies beyond this life. It would be like trying to describe a color, any color, to a blind person who has never seen or experienced seeing a color such as a purple sunset or a clear blue sky. Words just don’t describe and can’t describe that which your eye sees! Like the boy who was in the movie “Heaven is for real!”, when he tried to describe someone or something that he saw it was just more…more real, more colors, more than he could describe with words.

Heaven is more than our imaginations can imagine accurately at least because there are colors and textures and gold which is so pure that it is clear like glass. We don’t have a reference for anything like that in our minds. Eternity is more than we can believe or imagine, but we will be there IF we belong to Jesus! For the first weeks or months we will likely be discovering far more than we could’ve thought or imagined that our life in eternity might be like. After we realize that we have been there longer than we thought, time won’t mean anything anymore!

Seek Him out, learn about Him, give your life to Him and ask Him to come into yours because this time on Earth is just a training period for the real thing!image