I am Free

John 8:33 NIV  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

The word “Free” meant a lot for those who heard they were free on June 19, 1865. Freedom finally came when troops arrived in Galveston Bay, Texas to announce to slaves that they were free as an executive decree.  It has been told that many after receiving the message of freedom immediately left the place where they lived as a slave.

The word “free” has an even powerful meaning to those who were bound by the shackles of sin, and now are free.  Many people today do not realize that they do not have to continue being bound by sin, but can be free.   After believing in the message of freedom through the redeeming power of Jesus Christ you can receive freedom.  God has made it possible that you can declare by faith, “I am Free”. You do not have to continue living a life that had  you bound.

Peace in the Midst of a Storm

Luke 8: 22-25 KJV  22 Now it came to pass on a certain day, that he went into a ship with his disciples: and he said unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake. And they launched forth. 23 But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy. 24 And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm. 25 And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him.

A natural storm is defined as a violent disturbance of the atmosphere with in most cases accompanied with wind, rain, lighting, or even snow. These atmosphere storms may come unexpected, and can cause destruction of property, and in some cases death. Many respond to storms with fear and hopelessness.

Life also has storms that come unexpected such as: sickness, unemployment, violence, and in some cases death. Atmosphere and Life’s storms may produce the same reaction, but an additional reaction may be anger.
Regardless of the storm, there is only one that can bring peace in the mist of the storm. Jesus the Christ is able to bring peace. We may not understand why the storm has come, but it is necessary that we trust the Lord regardless of the situation, and have faith that the Lord is able to bring peace.

Wisdom From The Cross

1 Corinthians 1:18-19 NIV  For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”

Wisdom can be defined as good sense or knowledge.   For some who consider themselves as very wise does not accept the wisdom from the cross. God the maker of heaven and earth sent his only son (Jesus the Christ) to die on the cross for the sins of humankind. The death on the cross with the shedding of blood was the redemption needed that humankind can be saved.  For those who believe in the power of salvation through   Jesus the Christ will say that makes sense.  Jesus Christ God’s only son was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, died on the cross for human kind’s sins that humankind can be reconciled back to God.  Wisdom from the cross!

God is Still Worthy to be Praised

Psalm 34:1-3 NLT  1 I will praise the Lord at all times. I will constantly speak his praises. 2 I will boast only in the Lord; let all who are helpless take heart. Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness; let us exalt his name together.

In all situations God is still worthy to be praised.   We praise God for who He is, regardless of our situations.  The righteous have found out that circumstances are not how God can be measured.  God is always good, even when given news of an unpleasant report.  God is Almighty and there is no way that we can imagine all of His Greatness.  God cares about those things that concern the righteous.  God will never leave or forsake us during difficult times.  God is still worthy to be praised.

It Is Time

Ephesians 5:15-17 KJV 15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

Time is important regardless of your age.  A child may be interested in time when they have been told that a special gift or trip will be given at a certain time.  Teenagers find time to be significant when they have been promised the latest cell phone and a car when they turn sixteen or upon graduation.   As an adult time is important because of the responsibility of employment, paying bills when due, the time to close on a new house,  and just being at places when scheduled to be there.

It is time to understanding the will of God, and live to please God. When we are young this time should be taught to us.  As an adult this time should be as important then as it is now.  If you have not received the gift of salvation, it is time. The time to have a personal relationship with God is now.  The time is now to seek the will of God.  Only God knows what today holds, and what tomorrow will bring.  The wisdom that we need to live in this world is from God.

What the World Needs Now is Love

Matthew 22: 37-40 (NIV)  37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with your entire mind.38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

In the news, there are reports of shootings, hate crimes, domestic violence, and war in other countries.  Many have shared that they have the solution to all of these issues.  Theologians have shared that there are four descriptions of love.  The passion love, a friend’s love, parents/ children’s love, and the way God demonstrated love toward humankind.

We need the type of love that God demonstrated, when he sent his only son to die for the sins of humankind. When we have a love relationship with God, we will know how to love our neighbor.   Loving our neighbor involves treating others the way we want to be treated regardless of their: ethnicity, culture, or beliefs. It also involves forgiveness.

What the world needs is love!

 

 

 

Examine Your Soil

Luke 8:11-15 (NIV) 11 “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.

As a child I observed my Dad, when he prepared the soil for a garden.  This preparation involved: tilling the soil, removing rocks and weeds, and watering the soil.

In the gospel according to Luke is where we find a parable of a Gardner.   A parable is an earthly story with a spiritual meaning.  In this parable is where the Gardner has sowed seed, but not all of the seed was able to produce a crop because of some hindrances.

Just as our earthly soil needs to be clear of hindrances, our spiritual soil should not have hindrances if it wants to be productive or mature.   Some hindrances to being productive are a focus on trials instead of trusting in God the Father Almighty.   Other hindrances of growth can be placing wealth and desires of pleasure above a relationship with God.

All of us should strive to have good soil.  When the seed is planted in good soil it can produce a mature crop.  Good soil honors God by imitating Him in the way they love others.  Good soil recognizes that all of their help comes from God.   Good soil trust in the King of Glory.

Examine your soil.

You Choose!

Matthew 7:13-14 NIV 13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life and only a few find it.

In the gospel according to Matthew is where we find what has been known to be the sermon on the mountain.  The writer starts out by encouraging the reader to choose the narrow gate, and then gives a vivid description of each gate.   At first glance it would appear that the best gate is the broad gate because it is wider.  Yet when you read further it is discovered that the reward for being on this road is destruction, and  the narrow gate which may not be appealing leads to the road of life.

We have a choice whether life with Christ or destruction.  Whether we want to admit it or not, we are all on one of these paths.  The good news is that if we are not on the narrow path that leads to life, we have a chance to get on the right road.   The world can offer us temporary treasures, and at the end will prove to be destruction.    God offers us eternal life.   For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16 NIV),

You choose!

Brand New

2 Corinthians 5: 17-19 (NIV) 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:  19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.

Sometimes in preparation for buying something brand new, I get rid of the old things.  The discovery is recognizing that the old things are not useful or beneficial.    The appropriate action to the old things is getting rid of it.

When we become a new creation in Christ, we discover that the old lifestyle without Christ did not glorify God.  Also because of being “brand new” creations in Christ, we have eternal life with God. There are no benefits in trying to hold on to the old.   We are not  a slave to sin, since we have been reconciled.

A True Friend

John 15:13-15 (NIV) 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

A friend is someone that you can trust and is always there when you need them.   A friend does not seek to do you harm but always looks out for your good.  A friend will do above what they feel necessary to assure that you have all of your needs met according to their ability.   A friend will also give advice or counsel when they think it is needed.   A friend is someone you can trust.

Although we may look for this type of friend on earth, they have some limitations.  They are not able to be everywhere at all times.  You may be able to reach them by phone when you need them if you have good cellular service.   Also because a friend is not all knowing, they may not be aware that a decision that they make for you is not the best decision.  Sometimes the advice that a friend gives is not the best advice, although they thought it was.

Yet there is a true friend in Jesus the Christ.  Jesus Christ is available anytime or anywhere.   Jesus knows what is best, and we do not have to worry if what he tells us to do is what is best.  Jesus Christ is that friend that is closer than any brother, and came to earth that we can have life and life more abundantly.  This true friend gave his life that all who believes in him may be redeemed and has eternal life.

The true friend is Jesus the Christ!