The Untouchables

Jesus touches the untouchables and makes them clean

Daily Spirit & Word: 591: The Untouchables.

Would You Touch A Leper?

Good morning my friends, in our Church we’re about to begin a new preaching / teaching series on the Gospel of Mark. I’m getting ready and have been reading it through again. I was touched by my King Jesus today, because He’s willing and ready to touch everybody.

Leprosy is a disease: It has many forms, but in it’s worst form it is contagious, it spreads and isolates people.

In the time of Jesus they didn’t differentiate between forms of leprosy they treated everyone who contracted the disease the same; they isolated them and made certain they kept their distance from uncontaminated people.

Bells were placed around their necks and they were to shout a warning when approached by someone “Unclean, Unclean” “Leprosy” or “Leper coming through”… Leviticus 13:45-46  “The person with such an infectious disease must wear torn clothes, let his hair be unkempt, cover the lower part of his face and cry out, ‘Unclean! Unclean!’ 46  As long as he has the infection he remains unclean. He must live alone; he must live outside the camp.”

Would you touch a Leper? Jesus did!

Mark 1:40-45 A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.”
41  Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!”
42  Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured.
43  Jesus sent him away at once with a strong warning:
44  “See that you don’t tell this to anyone. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.”
45  Instead he went out and began to talk freely, spreading the news. As a result, Jesus could no longer enter a town openly but stayed outside in lonely places. Yet the people still came to him from everywhere.

 

“I AM Willing”

“If You Are Willing?” the Leper pleaded with Jesus and our Lord Jesus said, “I AM willing”

My friends, this touch of the untouchable is astonishing, because everybody who touches a leper becomes ritually unclean in Jesus day. They were considered to be contaminated. However, the man gets cured and runs around telling everybody about his healing. It becomes impossible for Jesus to move around freely. So instead of the Leper being isolated, as required by the Law of Moses, in lonely places, it’s our LORD who’s forced to go, He had to stay outside the towns and cities as a result of touching that Leper, but it wasn’t because Jesus was infected, but because everyone wanted to touch or be touched by the Saviour.

Knowing that Jesus was willing to touch an untouchable man gave EVERYBODY confidence that this man Jesus would also be likely to be willing to touch them and heal them too.

My friends, Jesus is still willing to touch the untouchable, the unclean, the sinner. He’s also waiting to touch your heart too. He’s longong for you to shout out to Him, “Lord if you are willing, you can make me clean”. He IS WILLING.

No wonder Jesus wanted to move on, because He didn’t care about being popular or famous, Jesus came with a Mission and a Message, not just to heal. He understood the shallowness of people who’d come just for what they wanted. They were not coming to hear Jesus words or his message, but to feel His touch. They knew that just one touch from this man changes everything.

I love that worship song; “Just ONE touch of the King changes everything”

 

How different we are to that Leper:

  • He was commanded by Jesus to “Keep quiet about his healing”. Instead he told EVERYBODY.
  • We are commanded to tell everyone the Good News of Jesus: Instead we keep quiet and don’t tell ANYBODY.

 

WHEN THE LEPER SPREADS THE GOOD NEWS:

People came from everywhere to be touched by Jesus.

Although Sin is just like Leprosy; it contaminates deeper than the surface of the skin, it spreads, it affects your life by isolating you from God, from fellowship and ultimately from Heaven. Sin cuts us off from God.

Isaiah 59:2 (NLT) “It’s your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore.”

But Jesus died so that we could all be healed from the disease of sin, and from the effects of sin. Jesus shed His blood upon the Cross so that we could to be set free from God’s wrath and anger and ultimately from His punishment for our sins, when we repent and trust Jesus as Lord and Saviour, then we’re set-free from sin to follow Jesus commands and teachings. He is willing to touch the untouchables today.

Have an awesome day, don’t be afraid to touch someone for Jesus today and be willing (as Jesus was) to be used by the Lord to reach out in love and touch some precious souls for Jesus. No matter who you may think is untouchable, they are all precious to the Lord Jesus, because Jesus gave His life for EVERYONE.

I’m praying that you’ll have a lovely day, learning to love like Jesus and touch your lepers’ hearts.

Don.

 

Hurting People, Hurt People

Why do hurting people hurt people.

Daily Spirit & Word: 588. Hurting People, Hurt People.

Freedom That Lasts:

John 8:31-36 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.
32  Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
33  They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”
34  Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.
35  Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it for ever.
36  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

Free Indeed:

Jesus IS the TRUTH: So Knowing Jesus as LORD is the Key to Freedom.

John 14:6  Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.”

Jesus IS: The Way, The Truth and The Life: So to know how to live and to get the LIFE we’ve got to come to Jesus and receive Him as LORD of our life. When we do that, we’ll be SET-FREE.

You know sometimes we are at a loss as to why some people go around hurting others. However, it is quite easy to discover the reason why they do that, it’s because somewhere along the line they’ve been hurt or offended themselves, but they’ve never gotten over it and it spills out into those around about them, sometimes it’s the ones they love the most that get hurt the most.

It’s an old saying, “Hurt people, hurt people” but it is so true.

There are common traits that a hurting person exhibits;

  • They’ll be very touchy about what people are saying.
  • They’ll interpret every word of advice as a criticism.
  • They’ll portray themselves as ‘victims’: I was hurt as a child etc and use that as an excuse or a way of justifying the way they are acting now.
  • They’ll perform hard to compensate or try to alleviate any guilt they may feel for not considering others.
  • More often than not though, they’ll be unaware of the effect they are having upon others who love them.

It’s so sad, but because of the way they are, they’ll often alienate themselves, people will stay away from them, and they cannot fathom why no one is there for them in their time of need. This furthers or exacerbates and entrenches their hurt.

Here’s what a psychologist has said; “Hurting people will often have the emotional maturity of the age at which the original and unresolved hurt took place. If they are acting like babies, children or teenagers then don’t be surprised.”

Even more horrific: Hurting people often hurt themselves. Self-harming: That’s when the Domonic has really taken hold.

Jesus came to give us LIFE and FREEDOM, but Satan is out to kill and destroy.

John 10:9-11 “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.

10  The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

11  “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”

 

It’s because they are hurting and every word spoken to them is filtered through their pain or hurt and they’ll (more often than not) unconsciously respond with anger and venom. They’ll attack the person who’s only intent is to help them or even to love them.

There are certain words, phrases or situations that will trigger emotional outbursts; that will lead them to hurt others or hurt themselves. They won’t be aware until afterwards what’s happening, they live with constant regret, guilt and fear.

Hurting people are often targets and susceptible to demonic attack.

To cover, hide or mask their feelings, they’ll often turn to drink or drugs or activity, doing things to excess.

To those on the receiving end of their hurt or emotional state it’s totally perplexing. It seem unreasonable the level of their anger or emotional outburst.

What are we to do when we’re hurt by someone and we can’t work out the reasons why?

  • Pray for them.
  • Forgive them.
  • Pray for them.
  • Bless them.
  • Love them.
  • Do good to them.
  • Ask the LORD to set them free.

Call upon the Holy Spirit to act in their life, intercede for them on their behalf. Because they don’t know, they don’t know what to do. They are like the Jewish people, trapped and slaves to sin, but not even aware that they are enslaved.

Psalm 118:5 “In my anguish I cried to the LORD, and he answered by setting me free.”

It might or might not be you that’s involved in the setting free process, but at least you’ll be free from hurt yourself. Once you’ve forgiven someone, it’s not them that gets released, but you.

How can they be set free?

Often, because you love them, you’ll want to see your hurting friend, relative, co-worker or wife or husband set free.

It often takes Christian (Biblical) counselling or someone that the LORD will send along, whom they’ll trust enough to allow them to get close, so that they’ll open-up and reveal the hurt inside. When they are ready to do that, they’ll need to be led to forgive the person that’s hurt or offended them. It is when we ALL forgive that we’re set FREE from offence and hurt and pain.

There are books about HURTING PEOPLE, but they are unlikely, if they are unaware of their condition, to read them. The BEST book of course is God’s Word: It’s sharper than a two edged sword and gets right to the heart of the matter.

Leading a person to Jesus will begin the setting free process, but it takes time, patience, love, respect and awareness. Try your hardest NOT to take it personally when a hurting person lashes out at you. Instead, quietly and purposefully take them to the LORD in silent prayer. Bring Jesus into the situation, He knows already, but is waiting for you to call upon Him.

I’ve known people who’ve been like that who’ve been transformed by the Lord Jesus Christ.

In fact everyone who comes to the Lord experiences a degree of being set free from past hurts, but we only realise later on how much the Lord has set us free. Knowing the TRUTH (The Lord Jesus Christ) sets us free. So pray that somehow a hurt person, who’s hurting others or hurting themselves will come to KNOW the TRUTH and be set free by the Lord Jesus Christ.

So, when you can’t work out why someone has been or is being; vile or evil or nasty towards you, know that somewhere along the line in their life they’ve been hurt, their hurt is unresolved so they’ll be unreasonable and will hurt others or hurt themselves. You cannot reason with a hurt, you need to forgive the person who caused it to release yourself from the pain it is causing you.

Have an AWESOME day of FREEDOM with the Lord Jesus Christ,

Don.

 

Who told you that you were naked?

Sin and Disobedience

Daily Spirit & Word: The Fall of Mankind into Sin.

“I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
Good morning my friends, my holiday is over, I’m back at work, it’s been awesome to have a long break from my usual routine, but it’s also good to get back to ‘normal’. It’s early morning and I’m up with my Lord Jesus. You know something, I’ve been meeting with Him every single day of my holiday, because you cannot have a holiday from being a follower of Jesus.

Yesterday someone came around to my house and asked me this question; “How many times can you go away from the Lord before you finally and fully fall away?” It was a simple and honest question. When someone asks me a question like that, I know that it’s like a loaded-gun or an iceberg, there far more below the surface than above the water. Some people have said to me, “How can you fit 120 men inside one of those, referring to my Submarine?” Then I have to explain, “You know my friend, an Submarine is much like an iceberg, there’s far more beneath the water than there is above” If you could see a Submarine in a dry-dock then you’d realise what I mean, it’s an immense piece of exciting engineering which always reminds me of a whale.

My response was, “You only need to go away from the Lord ONCE before it becomes permanent.” His face fell immediately, because, as I’d guessed, he was looking for a way to excuse his life of sin. You see my friends, we cannot have a holiday away from the Lord once we’ve started upon the journey of faith with Jesus. Do you remember the Lord’s words on this subject?

Hand to the Plough:

Luke 9:62 “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”

But I’m going through Genesis at the moment and a phrase jumped out a me this morning:

Genesis 3:7-11 7  Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realised that they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. 
8  Then the man and his wife heard the sound (voice) of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.
9  But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” 
10  He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” 
11  And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree from which I commanded you not to eat?” 

Thankfully, those who’ve trusted in Christ Jesus have been SAVED:

Colossians 1:13-14 13  “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14  in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”

When we come to Jesus who knows the end from the beginning, He knows your whole life, even before you gave in and trusted Him as your Saviour, so He knows those times that you’ll yield to temptation, that you’ll be weak and fall into sin. And He still gives you the blessings of the knowledge of forgiveness and a new heart to obey Him. What amazing grace and mercy.

Yes Jesus has ‘rescued’ you from the dominion of darkness: However, we still get those same, Adam like, feelings of separation when we sin. Remember how Adam and Eve, once they’d eaten the forbidden fruit, made coverings for themselves out of leaves and hid themselves in the garden of Eden. What was it that made them hide? They heard the voice of the Lord in the garden. The Lord was either singing or saying something out loud, and the voice of the Lord became a terror to them. They knew that they were naked; i.e. that the Lord could see what they’d done, it was open before Him who’s eyes see and know everything. It’s the same with anyone who sins, even just a little, the mere fact and act of disobedience has the exact same effect, we all want to run away and hide from God, from his presence, from His Holy voice. We don’t want to see Him, we don’t want to hear Him, we don’t want to be anywhere near Him, so we run away and hide and try our best to cover-up our shameful nakedness.

Asking that question, “How many times can we go away from God before it becomes permanent?” is like asking “How many times can I choose to sin and get away with it?” The answer is “NONE” You’ll never get away with it, God knows it all and He’s right there as a witness to every single act or thought of disobedience.

Alexander Maclaren has said it brilliantly: “These are still the two lies which wile us to sin: ‘It will do you no harm,’ and ‘You are cheating yourselves out of good by not doing it.’ Alexander Expositions of Holy Scripture – Genesis.

When God asked Adam, “Who told you that you were naked?” He KNEW that Adam and Eve had eaten and had received the knowledge of Good and Evil.

My friend related how he’d been feeling; that there was an emptiness, a barrenness, how God seemed distant, far away. Then he said something amazing, “You know, I know, that God has not moved away, it’s me”…

Temptation to sin: We’ve already lost the battle when we’re thinking to ourselves; “I wonder how many times I can do this and get away with it?”

Disobedience: Acting or Thinking sinfully; results in cutting us off from the Lord. Even after we’ve come to faith and trust in Jesus. Until we get right with Him again we’re separated from Him, we’re not walking with Him, we’re in the darkness and there is a feeling that we want to cover-up our shameful nakedness, to hide our inner-self from the Lord. There is no peace when we’re walking in the darkness. There is no joy in our hearts.

“Who told you that you were naked?”

When we choose to sin, afterwards it’s like the LORD is not there, as if our relationship has died, we’re cut-off from Him. We’ll also get fearful and want to run and hide from God, because we become aware that He can see right through us. 

When Temptations Come:

We’ve got a choice: We can listen to God’s voice, His witness within, our Conscience, that will be crying out to us; “This will lead to the death of your relationship with God”. Or we can reason with ourselves and con ourselves into believing; It’s not that bad, everyone else is doing it, everybody thinks it’s OK, it won’t do me any harm, why not enjoy yourself, you deserve it, you’ve earned the right to enjoy it”

But Moses Chose A Different Way:

Hebrews 11:25  “He chose to be ill-treated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.”

When we choose to follow God’s WAY: It’s costly in terms of dying to self, in saying “No!” to the pleasures of sin for a season.

Hebrews 11:25  “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;”

Yes we can enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season, but whilst we’re doing so, we’ll be doing it away from Jesus and it will be as if He’s dead to us, as if He’s not real, as if there is no God. The realisation will come to us that we’re NAKED and we’ll want to run and hide like Adam and Eve. But just like a dark-cloud hides the sun, the sun still continues to shine behind it’s dark lining; so God continues to reign and rule behind the darkness of our disobedience.

Just as God called out in the Garden of Eden for Adam: “Adam, Where are you?” He’s calling out to you and me today: “Where are you?”

  • Are you walking with the Lord?
  • Are you seeking to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season?

Have an awesome day with Jesus. Choose LIFE, JOY, PEACE and FELLOWSHIP with God today. It’s going to be FREEDOM and FOUNTAINS of LOVE flowing within.

Prayer: “Dear Lord Jesus, I pray today that when temptation comes, I’ll be listening to You in my heart. Help me to know that choosing to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season is like death to my relationship with You. This day Lord; I’m choosing LIFE and the joy that comes as I walk with You. Help me Lord! Amen.”

Don.

 

Like A Withered Tomato Plant.

Drought, Dryness, Thirst, Hunger,

Daily Spirit & Word 558:

Like A Withered Tomato Plant.

Good morning my friends, I’ve had a wonderful week so far and I’m looking forward to an exciting weekend. The School came to church yesterday for their end of term assembly, it was so good hearing all the children singing and watching their dance before the Lord. You can learn a LOT from children: out of the mouths of babes.

I’ve shared with folks a few time how a few days ago, I ventured into my garden and was horrified. It strange when you’ve set your mind to relax and enjoy a break from your labours then disaster strikes. Well it was only a little disaster, but well worth sharing, because the LORD has been speaking to me about it since.

I was just sitting down when I glanced over to my tomato plants, they’d all began to wither, their leaves were curled-up and the tops drooping terribly. What had happened? I’d not watered them for a day, it was a HOT day, and though I’d planed to water them, as usual, in the evening, they’d already begun to wilt in the heat of the sun. So I quickly got my garden hose and sprayed them, then soaked each plant in turn, the soil in their pots was so dry and hard that the water just floated and would not sink into the soil. I kept soaking them for over an hour. Then I returned to my labour in another part of the garden, fearing the worse that the tomatoes had been withered beyond salvation. They gotten so dried up they’d never be able to soak in the life-giving water.

However, after another hour, I glanced at my plants again, and though their leaves were still much softer than normal, they’d begun to lift and their heads were standing up again. Another hour passed, I’d watered them again and then they were standing tall, firm and ready to face the heat of the sun again.

Well, since then the LORD has been showing me from His Word in so many places that we NEED to come to HIM every single day if we’re going to prosper and live as Christians. If you truly want to be known by God as a Follower of Jesus Christ, then you need to stay connected to Christ or you too will wither and die. It will be as if you are just like a non-Christian, you will be so dried-up Spiritually that your head will droop, your desire for spiritual things will not be there, you’ll be hardened against instruction and correction. Just like the plant that had gotten so hard that it couldn’t drink-in the very thing it needed to survive.

CURSED: Cursed is the man (person).

Jeremiah 17:5-6 5  This is what the LORD says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength and whose heart turns away from the LORD.
6  He will be like a bush in the wastelands; he will not see prosperity when it comes. He will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no-one lives.

Let’s read that again in another translation:

Jeremiah 17:5-6 5  Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
6  For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.

  • Whenever we’re tempted to BE independent of God.
  • Whenever we’re fooled into THINKING “I can do it by myself”.
  • Whenever we’re tricked into doing things in WORLDLY ways.

Then we’re CURSED. (Be shocked my friends, because it’s introduced to us like this, “This IS what the LORD says”, i,e. it’s not a man saying it to you, it’s not a book saying it to you, it’s the LORD Himself. It’s a warning from Heaven; “Don’t trust in yourself, don’t trust in man’s cunning, man’s wisdom, man’s strength or anything else MANKIND tells you how to be, how to live and how to succeed in this world. TRUST ONLY IN GOD. (He’s revealed HIS will in HIS Word).

Let’s see it unpacked just a little more for today: On Sunday I’m going to be opening up God’s WORD on this subject a little more.

BLESSED: Blessed is the man (person).

Now just sit and soak in God’s WORD (Like my tomato plant; and BE revived, be renewed, have your thirst quenched, feel the goodness surge through your veins, let Him lift your head).

Jeremiah 17:7-8 7  Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.
8  For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

Notice in the KJV “Her leaf shall be green” That’s awesome, I hadn’t noticed that before. AWESOME! This really does apply to both men and women my friends.

 

BLESSED by the LORD is the person who trusts in HIM.

 

But NOTICE: The reason why?????

The reason God doesn’t want you or me or anyone to TRUST in their flesh or the advice of other men or women in their ‘worldly’ wisdom, is this:

Jeremiah 17:9 9  The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

Why? Because your HEART is: DECEITFUL (it will trick, fool and lie to us).

Because our HEART is: DESPERATELY WICKED: the heart will lead you away from God into wicked and foolish things. It will be desperate for the things that God has said are NOT GOOD for you. Your Heart will lead you away from God because in our natural un-redeemed condition our HEART is deceitful and desperately wicked. (Even for Christian’s who’ve begun to walk in the flesh, the heart will lead you further away from God if you trust it’s inclinations).

It’s like my tomato plant, it desperately needed water, but was rejecting the water at first. Even though I was soaking it, it had gotten so HARD, it would not and couldn not drink in the precious life-giving fluid.

Oh my friends, is the LORD shouting out to you this Friday? Stop, stop trusting in your flesh, the arm of your strength, your heart is deceitful and desperately wicked, it’s telling you things that are lies about God, lies about how to be a great success in this life. STOP listening to your flesh and the wisdom of the men of the world. STOP trusting in your own desperately wicked heart and trust the LORD.

BE BLESSED: You will always have what you NEED from the LORD, even when disaster strikes, you will continue to flourish.

Have an awesome weekend and SOAK in God.

Jeremiah 17:7-8 7  Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.
8  For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

It’s funny how the ordinary things in life, like my withered tomato plant can teach us God’s TRUTH so that we can remember it forever.

When we turn away from the LORD (or neglect to do or be in His presence daily), we’re beginning to trust in the flesh for our Spiritual survival, we’re going to get dry, thirsty, parched. It will be like we’re all alone in a desert place, away from all that’s good. Don’t trust in the flesh or the strength of human wisdom, but turn again and trust in the LORD.

I need YOU LORD JESUS, every single day. Fill me up Lord. Amen.

Don.

Read: John 4: John 15, Luke 15, 1 John 3:16,

Especially the Woman at the Well:

 

 

God’s Expansive Reasoning

God's LOVE extends to all people, everywhere, always,

Daily Spirit & Word, 533: God’s EXPANSIVE REASONING.

God is LOVE: The LORD / LOVE Cannot Be Contained.

Good morning my friends, it’s great to be back home again. We had a wonderful short time away in Cornwall for my niece’s wedding blessing, which I conducted on the edge of a cliff in Cornwall at Hayle beach. Such an awesome place, three miles of golden sands and a beautiful bay. When you take a look you can’t help but praise the Lord for His awesome Creative boundless and expansive LOVE.

God’s revelation to me today:

“Expansive Reasoning: God’s Expansive Love”

Have you ever woken-up with a word or a phrase upon your head? This is what was upon mine this morning at 3.00am; “Expansive Reasoning”… Then came God’s revelation: about God Himself and His EXPANSIVE LOVE.

“Expansive Reasoning” It seemed to me that God was saying to me this morning,

“You try and contain God’s love, but God is LOVE and that love cannot be contained, because it is boundless and free.”

Further, as I was slowly coming awake the voice said; “The human tendency is to limit, control, dominate and determine, but God’s nature is expansive, because He wants to set-free instead of controlling, He wants to broadcast His GRACE so that it’s available for everyone, He wants to shower His love upon everyone regardless of who they are, what they are like or where they come from.”

“Oh WOWzer!” I thought to myself, I’ve just got to get-up, get out of bed and Google this 🙂

Then I thought to myself, “Donald, you must have read that somewhere” and “I know, I’ll Google it when I get up”. When I get up? I just had to get up whilst the thought was upon my mind, it’s 3.00am… Ahhhhhh!

So I got up and Googled “EXPANSIVE REASONING”, hoping and praying the LORD had given me something original. It’s amazing, because we all want to be the first at things don’t we, that’s another human tendency, we’re competitive with one another, God’s NOT like that, His nature is to co-operate instead of to compete. For instance, just look at the way that Jesus subjugated His own will to the Father’s throughout His time on earth. WOWzer! It’s NOT ON Google yet! Praise the LORD for He’s always ORIGINAL. He gave it to me whilst I was sleeping, a phrase that even Google has not heard about, until this morning; “EXPANSIVE REASONING.”

You know the place in the bible where it reveals God’s expansive love? Every single page 🙂 He wants all people, in every place at every juncture in time to KNOW and EXPERIENCE His wonderful LOVE. Because God is LOVE He desires ALL people to KNOW and EXPERIENCE Himself. That’s awesome, that’s Expansive love and it’s even revealed in CREATION: God made the universe and it’s constantly expanding. God’s LOVE goes out like that, it’s continually going out and extending to everyone and everything. The Bible tells us that through Creation we can know that there is a God and that we should respond to Him by loving Him back. (Romans 1,2)

Perhaps I did get it, in a round about way; from these amazing hymn lyrics;

“Here is love vast as the ocean,
loving kindness, as a flood,”

Do you know it? It’s one of my favourites, because it’s reveals God’s EXPANSIVE REASONING and extends His LOVE to all people in every age. “God IS Love”…

My friends, have you ever had a word from the LORD? Well I’m sure He’s speaking, not just to me today, but to each and every one of you who are reading this. He wants you to know just how much He loves you, but to experience and know that love and the person of God, you’ll need to respond, to yield yourself to Him, to give in and let Him love you.

A Boy’s First LOVE: It’s like the boy trying to win the girl’s heart for the first time in his life. He’s adored her for ages and wants her to be his girlfriend, so he trys wooing her with flowers, gifts and kindnesses that he’s never extended to anyone in his life before. Questions assail his mind, “Will she love me back? Will she open up her heart to me? Will she love me as much as I love her?” His love is an ‘Expansive’ love. He’ll shower his love upon his new sweetheart. He’ll do anything to win her love.

My friends, God wants to love you like that, in fact He is loving you like that right now, let Him love you my friends, let Him love you.

I’m getting the feeling today that’s exactly what God’s looking for from us as well. We are His, His Created human beings and He wants us to love Him back just as much as He has loved us.

Here’s my NEW TITLE for this passage: “God’s EXPANSIVE REASONING: GOD’S EXPANSIVE LOVE”

1 John 4:7-12 7 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.
8  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
9  This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
10  This is love: not that we loved Godbut that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
11  Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
12  No-one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

I know that, like me, some of you have been experiencing pain, hardships, trials of many kinds. The last few weeks I’ve been in constant pain and sometime excruciating agony, at the wedding on Saturday I was also in agony, standing of the cliff-top, but just had to be there for my niece Sammy to shower God’s blessings upon her and new life with Tim. I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. Love moves beyond pain and leaps into the heart my friends. And I believe they were touched by God’s love too.

God IS love my friends, He wants you to know Himself, to experience Himself, to know that you are loved with an expansive love that is boundless and free. Jesus died so that we could experience God’s love personally, receive it my friends. His love brings healing in it’s wings.

Have an awesome week walking in the love of the Lord.

“Love ONE ANOTHER”

Be filled afresh with God’s Holy Spirit right now, when you are you’ll be full of His LOVE, because God IS love, and you’ll be a power-source for God’s hand of love extended to a world that needs to know Him and His love for everyone. There are so many people walking around in pain; broken relationships, hurts and hatred, they need to feel and know God’s love today. Share that LOVE with everyone, regardless of who they are or where they come from or what they are like. God wants to use you to touch someone elses’s life with His love.

“Share that LOVE with everyone, regardless of who they are or where they come from or what they are like.”

Three times in the passage above it says; “LOVE ONE ANOTHER” = if you do then “God’s LOVE is in you”. My friends, are you getting God’s message today? His EXPANSIVE REASONING; “If you love one another as I have loved you, then you know me, I’m in you, and you are free to love everyone”…

Every blessing in Jesus.

Don.

Do a Goggle search for “Expansive Reasoning” and you’ll see that it comes to just one page, this one, this page, for now 🙂 Praise the LORD for His amazing originality. Now go and practice His EXPANSIVE REASONING AND HIS EXPANSIVE LOVE.

“God’s Expansive Reasoning: God’s Expansive Love” Rev Don Davis. London. 15th June 2015.

 

Disciples Prepared by Jesus for His Mission

Training and Discipline of the Lord Jesus

Daily Spirit & Word: Disciples Prepared by Jesus for His Mission.

40 Days With Jesus. Day 36: The Importance of Preparation.

Good morning my friends, today is Baptism Day: In two senses;

Baptism in Water for our Candidates who’ve been through the 40 Days of Preparation With Jesus. We’re thinking today on our course ’40 Days With Jesus’ :Day 36: The Importance of Preparation.

Baptism in The Holy Spirit: Today is Pentecost Sunday; the day the Church and Christians throughout the whole world will be celebrating the first outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. However, before that day arrived for the Disciples they had to undergo preparation by the Lord Jesus Christ. When He was satisfied they were ready, then He departed the earth and returned to Heaven, promising the next time they’d see Him on the Earth would be when He returns in all His Glory.

Why did Jesus ‘prepare’ them? You’ll know that whatever we do in life that has any value has a time of preparation connected with it. Schooling is preparation for meeting the world as an adult. Children spend every year of their lives from age 4 to age 18 in schools in the UK. It used to be age 16, but now they are required to remain in education for another two years. That’s 14 years of getting ready. Then some will go on for a few more years in further education establishments; College and University. Then there are other times of preparation in life: When a woman is about to have a baby, she’ll attend pre-natal classes, often with her husband, so she’ll know what to do and what to expect when the delivery day comes. Before people take a Driving Test these days, they are required to have undergone pre-test training. It was so easy years ago to get a driving license. You’d get a little booklet called the Highway Code, study it in your own time, take a few lessons, normally about 15 hours of driving with an experienced driver, then take the test. It’s not like that today it’s much more stringent and costly for people wanting to drive in the UK. But we all understand that we need to be PREPARED before we can say we’re qualified to do stuff: Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen; Police, Firemen, Nurses, Doctors, etc all need to have both basic training and specialist training for their chosen sphere of service.

So if we do all that in ‘normal’ secular life, we shouldn’t be surprised that we need a time of preparation by the LORD before we’re ready to serve Him with our lives? Well that exactly what Jesus was doing with His own Disciples and what happens with Christians today; The LORD Himself takes us on a journey of preparation. It took the Disciples over three years of time with Jesus before He considered them ‘ready’. To me that’s a bit like getting a Degree. Before you finally get your Diploma at a ceremony marking the occasion, where people clap and acknowledge the hard work you’ve undergone. People say, “Oh, it’s only a piece of paper”, but if you’ve taken the time, done the reading and research and thinking and study, you know what that piece of paper signifies. So when the Disciples finally get to Pentecost and their DAY arrives with the Diploma of the HOLY SPIRIT, the SEAL of God’s Approval, they’d undergone so much in preparation before it happened. During these last few days with Jesus, the 40 days between His Resurrection from the Dead and Ascension into Heaven: it was like an intensive short-course of specialist training.

Let’s look at Scripture: Acts, Luke’s second book.

Acts 1:1-11 1  In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach
2  until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen.
3  After his suffering, he showed himself to these men and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God.
4  On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about.
5  For John baptised with water, but in a few days you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit.”
6  So when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7  He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority.
8  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9  After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.
10  They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them.
11  “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”

So before He was “taken up before their very eyes”, Jesus had been getting them ready for what was about to come. It wasn’t just the Holy Spirit, Jesus knew they’d NEED more than the indwelling and Jesus always gives us what we NEED. Sometimes Jesus doesn’t give us what we want, but He’s always ready to give us what we need. Acts 1:1-3 highlights the ‘preparation’ of Jesus Disciples and reveals to us why He needed to be with them ‘many times’ during those 40 Days before the Ascension. They were about to get the SEAL, the Holy Spirit, which was God’s Power for God’s Mission to the ends of the earth: They had been selected to be Jesus’ Witnesses.

Get Ready For Your Next Breakthrough With Jesus

Have you ever thought about the word: “DISCIPLE”: Think about another word, ‘Discipline’ and you’ll understand what’s sometimes required in the making of a disciple.

Discipline Means: 

  1. A branch of knowledge.
  2. A system of rules of conduct or method of practice.
  3. The trait of being well behaved.
  4. Training to improve strength or self-control.
  5. The act of punishment or punishing.

Verb: Discipline Means:

  1. Develop (Children’s) behaviour, by instruction and practice; especially to teach self-control.
  2. Punish in order to gain control or enforce obedience.

When you look back through Jesus time here on the earth, you’ll observe, especially thinking about how He was ‘training and disciplining His disciples, you’ll see that He employed all of the ABOVE. Also, God has promised to each and every one of us, that as a FATHER disciplines his own children so the LORD disciplines those who belong to the family of God.

Remember God’s Promises:

Proverbs 3:11-12 (NIV) “My son, do not despise the LORD’S discipline and do not resent his rebuke, 12  because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.”

Proverbs 15:5 (NIV) “A fool spurns his father’s discipline, but whoever heeds correction shows prudence.”

How does He Discipline and Train and Get YOU Ready For His Mission?

Hebrews 12:1-6 1  Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
2  Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
3  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
4  In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.
5  And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
6  because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son.

My Friends: When we are going through the LORD’S Preparation: Discipline, Punishment, Rebuke, Correction, Training,  The Lord’s Discipline (sometimes it’s not pleasant and it hurts in so many ways), we must know and remember that He’s just getting us ready for something, for another aspect of service or specialist training for His purposes. When it gets hard like that, and it really does get hard sometimes, instead of falling away, ‘growing weary’ or ‘loosing heart’ as so many do, we should cling tighter to the Saviour of our souls, focus our attention upon the Lord Jesus Christ again, run with perseverance the race marked out for us, and submit afresh to the Holy Spirit and know that He’s only doing it because He loves us as our HEAVENLY FATHER. He knows what we need to develop our character and make us fit for service in His Kingdom.

Remember Jesus was; gentle, meek and mild, but He was also quite strong and stern when He needed to be, when He was rebuking Peter and the other Disciples when they didn’t quite grasp what He was trying to teach them. Nobody likes to think of their precious Lord Jesus in that way, but we mustn’t paint a picture in our mind of a God that we want, that’s idolatry (IDOLATRY = making a god to suit ourselves or our desires), we must accept God completely as He has revealed Himself to be throughout Scripture: He is a Father who’s loving, kind, generous, gentle, patient and forgiving, encouraging and strengthening, but He’s also the LORD of Heaven who requires certain standards of behaviour, honesty, self-discipline, professionalism, and when we fall-short, because we’re His ambassadors and we’re His specially selected children, He’ll come and make His desires and ways known to those He loves and rebukes and corrects and trains in RIGHTEOUSNESS.

It’s difficult for followers of Jesus to discern sometimes, to know where the hardships or troubles are coming from: It’s either the LORD or SATAN; It’s either Discipline or Attack.

The Scriptures speak of three major categories of “trouble” for the believer:

  1. Discipline, judgment, or rebuke from the Lord;
  2. Tests, trials, and suffering from the Lord;
  3. Temptations or afflictions and attacks from Satan.

Knowing the PURPOSE:

God wants us to grow and flourish and be fruitful. So He’ll prune like a gardener does, to make things even more fruitful.

Satan wants to destroy us, to make us stumble and fall and even to hate God.

What’s Happening In Your Life Right NOW?

It may be the Lord is getting you ready for a breakthrough in ministry as He was the Disciples.

It may be that He’s just refining your character a bit.

It might be that Satan can see you are becoming a threat to his purposes of destruction.

Whatever it might be let’s do what God’s Word encourages us; Accept the Lord’s Discipline and Resist the Devil’s attacks with God’s armour in place.

Hebrews 12:9-11 (NIV)
9  Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! 10  Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. 11  No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

The Bible has so much to say about the Lord’s Discipline and Training in Righteousness: Bear this in mind:

Romans 11:11-24 11  Again I ask: Did they stumble so as to fall beyond recovery? Not at all! Rather, because of their transgression, salvation has come to the Gentiles to make Israel envious.
12  But if their transgression means riches for the world, and their loss means riches for the Gentiles, how much greater riches will their fulness bring!
13  I am talking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch as I am the apostle to the Gentiles, I make much of my ministry
14  in the hope that I may somehow arouse my own people to envy and save some of them.
15  For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?
16  If the part of the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; if the root is holy, so are the branches.
17  If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root,
18  do not boast over those branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you.
19  You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.”
20  Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid.
21  For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either.
22  Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off.
23  And if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again.
24  After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!

The word I’m getting today about all of this is: REPENT. Turn again to the Lord, no matter what kind of trail, suffering, sickness or trouble; ask the Lord to show you if you’ve wandered away, fallen short or not been listening to what He’s been telling you to do; like Jonah who refused the Lord’s call to mission. He’s always getting you ready for the next great thing in your life and in His Divine plan. Submit therefore to the LORD. He’s delivering you from the darkness into the light, into something much better.

Job 36:15 (NIV) “But those who suffer he delivers in their suffering; he speaks to them in their affliction.”

Get Ready For Your Next Breakthrough With Jesus

Have an awesome Sunday: Pray for our Candidates who’ve been prepared by the LORD for this day.

Praise the Lord for His goodness, kindness and love. But also welcome the Lord’s discipline that you can be trained and encouraged and strengthened by it.

Don.

 

 

From The Miracles to The Miracle Maker

Jesus cares and provides fish and bread at the resurrection appearances on the beach

Daily Spirit & Word: 509: From The Miracles to the Miracle Maker.

40 Days With Jesus: Day 25: John 21:7-14.

Good morning my friends, Saturday’s are always so special for me, because it’s the day of; rest and relaxation, a time to be with family and friends, a time to rebuild what the working week has drained out or us. Some of my friends relax so much on Saturdays that they spend the whole day in bed or in their night-clothes relaxing on the couch. Why? Because their working week is so stress-filled or exhausting and demanding, by the time Saturday comes around all they are ready to do is FLOP.

Today we’ll discover the tired, exhausted and hungry Disciples and the Lord Jesus coming to their assistance with a cooked breakfast for them to eat, also that Jesus is your friend and as a friend He comes to you for fellowship: He’s promised to do this many times in His Word, the Holy Scriptures, and today we’ll see the very first time that it actually happened after His Crucifixion and Resurrection from the dead.

John 21:7-14 7  Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, “It is the Lord,” he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water.
8  The other disciples followed in the boat, towing the net full of fish, for they were not far from shore, about a hundred yards.
9  When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread.
10  Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish you have just caught.”
11  Simon Peter climbed aboard and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn.
12  Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” None of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord.
13  Jesus came, took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish.
14  This was now the third time Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was raised from the dead.

Jesus Close Friends Get The Revelations:

The first thing that happens after the Miracle of the catch of fish that didn’t sink the boat or break the nets, was one of the Disciples, the one whom Jesus loved, recognised who it was that told them to drop the net on the right side of the boat. That revelation comes to the one who was closest to Jesus, “the disciple whom Jesus loved”. We know that disciple was John, the Gospel Writer and the very same John who wrote 1, 2 and 3 John and the book of Revelations. How close are you to Jesus today? If you are close like John, then you are going to get a some amazing revelations of the Miracle Maker.

As I pointed out yesterday: Jesus PROMISE is that He will come (John 14) He’ll come and REVEAL Himself to us and in us. He’ll come and have fellowship. He’ll come and we’ll EAT together (Rev 3:20)… It’s Awesome to know this as a TRUTH, but it’s even more awesome when we experience the risen and resurrected Lord’s presence and we get our own REVELATION. Not just once, but regularly. No wonder John wanted to communicate it so clearly throughout his Gospel and all his letter and the book of Revelation. Jesus wants a closer walk with you today and He’s waiting and watching and calling out to you today to come to Him.

It’s been my own experience that the Lord has made known to me that He is present, many times. I’ve had that feeling and knowledge that Jesus is HERE: Whilst washing dishes (I hate washing dishes, but I began to sing praise songs, then suddenly Jesus came, and the task that I was doing seemed so much easier and even joy filled, I was in the presence of Jesus and I began to cry with joy). He’s with us always, of course, from the moment we decided to follow Him as Lord and receive Him as Saviour, but there are times when He manifests Himself and makes Himself more KNOWN. Just like He did with the Disciples in all His resurrection appearances, somehow they didn’t recognise Him immediately, until the right moment when they eventually get the revelation: “It’s Jesus”. As we’ve just read above, that’s what happened to the beloved Disciple John whilst in the boat. Everyone else had their eyes on the Miracle, but John was focused upon the Miracle Maker.

It’s always going to be the friends of Jesus who’ll get the REVELATIONS. This is something that’s true throughout the whole Bible, it’s the friends of God, that He chooses to reveal His secret plans: Moses, David, Abraham, Elijah, etc… So I’m going to ask you that question unashamedly today: “How much of a close friend of Jesus are you?” One of the ways to know is this; how obedient are you being to Jesus commands? (see yesterday’s reading). You see my friends, we’ll also get a revelation of who we are when we come to Jesus. We’ll know that He loves us and we love Him. We’ll know that He loves us, WHEN we love Him with all our heart, mind, soul and strength. We can only love Him like that with the HELP of the HELPER, the Holy Spirit who indwells every true follower and believer.

It’s the friends of the LORD who’ll get His Revelations.

The Fallen Believer Runs To Jesus:

Notice secondly the impulsive Peter: Every time I read this portion of John’s Gospel, a great big smile comes over my face. I always think “I want to be like Peter” I want to run to the Lord, to be rushing up to Jesus. Upon hearing the news from John, that the person who’d told them to cast the net, the one standing on the shore, was Jesus, you’ll note that Peter does two things:

First: Peter Puts on His Outer Garment:

It’s an amazing few words; “he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off)”. Why did Peter feel the need to put on his outer garments? He’d have been naked from the waist-up: Reminds me of Builders working on site on a hot summer’s day when I was a boy, they’d all be lying around with their shirts off at lunch-time. Peter, had obviously taken it off because working the net was much easier without the clothing getting in the way. However, what was it that made him put it on? Well, many have speculated different reasons, but I believe it was like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, who hearing the Lord’s footsteps in the Garden after eating the forbidden fruit run away and hide. Then the Lord makes clothing for them, for they were naked. It’s SHAME that Peter feels my friends, for he knew he’d sinned when he betrayed the Lord Jesus. When Peter denied the Lord three times and the cock crowed, it was then that he remembered the Lord’s words, warning that he’d deny him. Now Peter is ashamed when he hears John’s words, “It’s the Lord” and tries to cover up his shameful nakedness. He’s aware of his sinful condition before the Holy and Righteous Lord Jesus Christ.

From the Miracles to the Miracle Maker

That shame is what we experience sometimes when we’ve been living in sin. We too want to run and hide ourselves away from the Lord. That’s why so many fallen Christians won’t come back to church, they know that in the company of other believers, the Lord is likely to show up and make Himself known to them. They’d rather stay at home safe from the presence of the Lord.

That shame is also why non-believers refuse to come to the Saviour. It’s because they love sin and they are ashamed and frightened that their evil deeds will be exposed. Of course no sinner would articulate it that way, we only know this by God’s revelation on so many places in the Bible.

John 3:19-20 19  This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
20  Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.

Peter had to put on his outer clothing to cover up, it was in instinctive thing, something that the Police know when they are interviewing suspects. When someone is guilty, they’ll try and put something in front of them; their hand over their mouth, something between the interviewer and the suspect. So sinners need to try and hide behind something in God’s presence. That’s what Peter was doing when He heard it was Jesus, trying to cover up his sinful, shameful nakedness. Have you ever felt exposed when you heard a Sermon that hits home to where you’ve been sinning in life? I have and I just wanted to hide in the pew. God knows how to get to our hearts doesn’t he, but His purpose in doing so is always to restore us and clean us up so we can be of further useful service in His Kingdom.

However, even though Peter’s natural instinct is to hide his sinful, shameful nakedness, he does something extraordinary next;

Next: Peter Dives Into The Water:

Yes my friends, that’s the sinner diving into the water to get to Jesus faster than the boat is able to carry him. Peter can’t wait for the boat to get to the shore, so he jumps into the water because he’s desperate to get to Jesus. No thought is given to the others who need to tow the net full of fish ashore, now Peter knows that it’s Jesus, all he can do is get to Him as fast as he can.

This is one of my favourite passages in the whole Bible my friends, I just LOVE Peter. Because it reveals part of what happened to me and many other brothers and sisters I’ve known since I started following Jesus. When I realised just how much a sinner I was, how I’d fallen short of God’s Holy Standards, How I’d broken His commandments, there is nothing else that I could possibly do to remove the stain of sin in my soul. None of my good works would balance the scales of God’s Justice, sin must be punished or purged and I knew it. Unless I responded to the call of the Gospel, I knew I was headed for hell. But then I responded the Good News, “I don’t need to suffer God’s wrath and anger against my sins, I could trust in Jesus.” I knew I didn’t deserve Jesus’ forgiveness, but I knew that I could be forgiven, because of Jesus love for me. So many of my friends had turned to Jesus as well, they know they don’t deserve God’s amazing grace, but He gives it freely to all who will come to Him in Repentance and Faith in Jesus Christ. Once I knew what to do, and why I needed to do it, nothing on earth would have stopped me trusting in Jesus Christ for Salvation.

That’s what Peter was doing, He was coming to Jesus as fast as his body could carry him. He know Jesus was the ONLY way to be saved. My friends, I’ve actually seen people RUNNING down to the front of church to give their lives to Jesus, when they Holy Spirit convicted them of their need of The Saviour. I’m going to encourage you to listen to His voice today; to be like Peter, to be like my friends and so many that I’ve seen. I’m going to encourage you to come running to Jesus Christ right now. Don’t listen to your brain, be impulsive and just do it. Come!

From the Miracles of the Catch of Fish and the Un-burstable Nets: Peter comes running to the Resurrected Miracle Maker: The Lord Jesus Christ.

When they get to the Miracle Maker, they find the fish cooking and He’s giving them bread and fish.

Jesus wants to eat with you too my friends, to have fellowship with you. To be in your company and to provide for your nourishment in life. Oh what a glory it is today, to get this awesome awareness that Jesus is right inside you… Word’s can’t explain. But you need to try hard and take your eyes off the miracles and mover from the miracles to the miracle maker.

Imagine though, if your church was to have a fellowship breakfast on the beach with fish cooking on the fire: how many would show up? I’d be in that number as quick as a flash 🙂

Points to Ponder:

  • When was the last time you KNEW Jesus was with you?
  • How quick are you to recognise the voice of the Lord in your life?
  • Tomorrow, we’ll see that after the breakfast Jesus takes Peter aside and has a conversation about His love and devotion. Today let’s ponder on what we’ve been thinking about:

Jesus performs a Miracle in order to reveal Himself to His closest friends, and then because He knows they a tired from fishing all night, Jesus provides a meal of fish and bread for them to eat with Him. He’s right there today with you my friends. He loves you so much and wants you to experience His presence. That means not just knowing about Jesus, but actually getting your own revelation that He’s actually with you by His Spirit.

Prayer:

Dear Lord Jesus Christ; Thank you so much for who You are, how You reveal Yourself to us and how it happened with the first followers. Please help me to recognise Your interventions in my life quickly, help me not to focus so much on the Miracles that I miss the Miracle Maker, it’s Your face that I long for more than the Miracles You can perform. Help me to realise that being in Your presence is far more precious than anything else that I can have or that will happen in my life. Amen.

Have an awesome Saturday, relax as much as you can, because the LORD needs you tomorrow to Worship, to Fellowship, to Encourage you and build you up and to strengthen one another in the faith. I’ll see you on Sunday 🙂 I hope and pray you’ll get closer to Jesus today. Don.

40 Days With Jesus: Day 25: From the Miracles to the Miracle Maker.

With Jesus you will NEVER be LONELY again

[fusion_text]

With Jesus you will NEVER be LONELY again.
With Jesus you will NEVER be LONELY again.

Daily Spirit & Word, 451: With Jesus you will NEVER be LONELY again.

Jesus Christ is the ANSWER to our deepest needs in life: relational connection with the Creator.

Good morning my friends. Last night when we were out on the Streets sharing the Gospel with folks and giving out tracts and Gospel messages, we had a few great conversations with people, but as usual one sticks out in my mind more than the others. It was with a woman we stopped and chatted with under the railway bridge on Norwood Road in Tulse Hill.
It was so noisy, trains going overhead, buses roaring their engines and an endless stream of traffic on Norwood Road, but she stopped when we offered her a £1,000,000 note. I said, “It’s not real, but has a message about Jesus on the reverse side”. She smiled and we began to chat about faith. Isaac asked her, “Do you have a faith?” She said, “I used to, but I’ve been a bit disillusioned by things”. We would normally have gone back over her life and asked about her faith background, but as I found out afterwards, both Isaac and I felt the Lord was telling us to just be quiet and listen to the lady. As we did so we discovered a woman who revealed she was; lonely, desperate and seeking a deep connection with the something, she knew there was something missing in her life, she’d tried many different paths and found them all to be a dead end. She’d been trained as a Clinical Psychologist, trying for years to help people through their difficulties, but she needed help herself, she was desperately lonely and though she thought she should have or know the answer, she’d found all her pathways empty. Now she was ready to try something, anything to make that connection.
After listening for about ten minutes, I said, “You know something, God loves you”. Guess what happened? She began to cry. She’d been waiting to hear that for so long. Then I said, “When you know Jesus Christ, you’ll never be lonely again.” She looked straight into my eyes and said, “My mother is a committed Christian”. I said, “I’ll bet you she’s been telling you that for years?” She nodded. I said, “There’s more, with Jesus you will NEVER be Lonely again and you’ll have a FRIEND not just for life, but for all eternity.”
After giving her some assurance of life with Jesus, we then chatted about the NEW Course we’re starting after Easter, it’s a course that’s looking at the Resurrected Jesus and different people’s encounters with Him. I asked her, “Would you be interested in such a course?” She said, “Yes I would indeed”… I gave her our little leaflet with contact details and said, “Please get in touch with us, I know you are going to enjoy the experience of getting to know Jesus Christ.”
We’ve been saying for many moths that Jesus speaks when we go out for Him, but there’s POWER with us my friends. The Holy Spirit made sure that Isaac and I knew last night to keep quiet and just listen for a while. What if we’d just blurted out with the Gospel? We’d probably have lost that woman, but by being attentive to His leading we were able to engage on a completely different level. We ask Him to prepare the way and He does, but we must be careful to observe and listen to His leading.
Lonely: Loneliness: There are countless desperate and lonely people in our world today. The Bible reveals that loneliness is like a prison and we, Isaac and myself, could see that this woman was like a locked up prisoner desperate to see the outside world and escape the prison cell of loneliness.
 
Psalm 68:5-6 A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.”

Here the Psalm reveals what we said to the Lonely lady last night:

A) God is A Father: A father relates with his children. God relates with those who come to Him as a Father. Yes He disciplines, rebukes and punishes, just like an earthly father does, but God also encourages, gives grace to the humble and strengthens those who are weak and feeling empty.
B) God is a DEFENDER: of those who can’t defend themselves. We serve a God of Justice and one day He’ll give righteous justice to all who mistreat those who are fatherless and widows.
C) God is in HEAVEN: But He’s also right here beside us. God is NOT far away in a place that cannot be found. He’s close to every single human soul. He’s only a prayer away.
D) God PROVIDES: For every single soul there is a FAMILY to belong to. When you come to Jesus you are in God’s Family, He becomes your FATHER and every Christian is your brother or your sister.
E) God sets the captives FREE: In the verse above, loneliness is described as a PRISON and those who are suffering loneliness as PRISONERS, but listen what happens when He sets those prisoners free.
D) There’s SINGING: rejoicing, happiness, peace, joy, praise, release. When you’re set free from something the next thing you want to do is CELEBRATE and REJOICE right? Well my friends, that’s what happens when Father God sets the LONELY FREE.
G) DESERT EXPERIENCE: Those who’ve yet to come to the Saviour, it’s like living in a DESERT, “A sun-scorched land”.
Reflecting back on our meeting with the woman last night, I can see her now in my mind, walking along the road, looking sad, head down. However, after our conversation, as I watched her walking away there was a difference in her. She was walking taller, she was lighter, brighter and more joyful and hopeful. There was a spring in her step and I know an expectation of peace and the prospect of an end to her deep loneliness.
With Jesus Christ as your Lord, Master, Saviour and Friend, you’ll never be lonely again. We, who’ve trusted in Jesus, have an answer to one of the world’s greatest needs today: The need to feel connected, loved, accepted for who we are, cared for, and protected. God has revealed in my places in the Bible that He is the Answer to ALL of life’s relational problems. We’re rootless and restless until we find our eternal rest in Him. It comes when we come to Jesus. Release comes when we come as prisoners longing to be set free by Jesus.

In Everyone’s Life;

There are SIN issues to deal with.
There are Righteousness issues to deal with.
There are Rebellious issues to deal with.
There are Character issues to deal with.
Yes all of the above in ALL of our lives, but there’s a much bigger issue, the issue of being and FEELING CUT OFF from the Creator. We’ll always be lonely until we come to the Saviour, there’s a soul searching within every single human being, that will not be satisfied until we find our true rest in Jesus. That’s why Jesus said, “Come to Me”.
We can try and fill that aching and longing with things, with people, with pleasures and distractions, but it won’t go away. Many mistake the longing for needing more of what the world offers, and they spend all their energy and time trying to fill their life up with things and the world’s resources, but what we need most is to find total satisfaction in absolutely NOTHING, but being with Father God, when we find that total satisfaction, then we’re set free to really enjoy what He’s provided for us.
We’ll no longer see the world and the things of the world as something to posses, to own or keep, but to use and enjoy and give away freely, because our Father has given all of it to us. We’ll hold onto these things loosely, because our happiness, contentment, security and joy are not dependent upon the things or the people of this earth any more. Our deepest JOY and Happiness comes from being connected, related, joined and filled with God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
So for anyone who’s feeling lonely today, I would say “Listen to what the Lord your God has told you in His Word. Read and reread those words aloud, because it’s only in knowing the LORD of Creation that we find true companionship that our souls are crying out for.”
My friends, come to the Creator again today; to Jesus who made all things, stop trying to find soul satisfaction in the world, it will always leave you feeling wanting, but be filled to overflowing with His presence in your lives.
What a FOUNTAIN!
What a JOY.
What a PEACE.
Have an AWESOME Thursday.
Don.

NOTES on Loneliness / Our Need For God.

Bible Verses, Quotes, Scriptures About: Feeling Alone; Being Alone ; Feeling Empty, Feeling Lost, Feeling Lonely, Feeling Alone ; Loneliness ; Feelings.Psalm 25:16-17
“Turn to me and have mercy on me, because I am lonely and hurting.
My troubles have grown larger; free me from my problems.” (NCV)Psalm 121:1 -2 “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” (KJV)John 14:1 “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.” (KJV)Matthew 11:29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (NKJV)1 Peter 5:7 “Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you.” ~ KJV Ad.

Psalm 142:5-7 “I cry to you, O LORD; I say,
“You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.” Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need; rescue me from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for me. Set me free from my prison, that I may praise your name. Then the righteous will gather about me because of your goodness to me.” (NIV)

Deuteronomy 31:6
“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” (ESV)

Psalms 46:1
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (KJV)

Psalms 27:10
“When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take me up.” (KJV)

Isaiah 41:10
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (NIV)

Matthew 28:20
“Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (KJV)

Hebrews 13:5
“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (ESV)

2 Timothy 4:16-17
“At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them. But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lion’s mouth.” (NIV)

Psalm 68:6a
“God makes a home for the lonely; He leads out the prisoners into prosperity, Only the rebellious dwell in a parched land.” (NASB)

Lamentations 3:24-25 “”The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in Him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, To the person who seeks Him.” (NASB)

2 Corinthians 1:3-4
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” (NASB)

Luke 19:10
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.” (Amplified)

Psalm 91:1-2, 14-15 “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust. Because he loves me, says the LORD, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.” (NIV)

Revelation 3:20 “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” (KJV)

Psalm 9:10 “And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you.” (ESV)

Psalm 28:7
“The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.” (NIV)

Psalm 147:3 “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” (NIV)

Lamentations 3:22 -23 “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness. ” (KJV)

2 Chronicles 16:9a
“For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.” (NIV)

John 14:1-2, 27
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” (KJV)

Matthew 11:28 – 30 “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

John 14:27
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (KJV)

John 16:33
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (NIV)

Once Alienated From God..
Galatians 5:4 “You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace.” (NIV)

Colossians 1:21 “And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight.” (NKJV)

Jeremiah 29:13 “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” (KJV)

Bible Verses About Being Alone, Solitude, Jesus Being Alone
It’s Important to take out time to be alone sometimes – Like Jesus did
Matthew 14:13-14
“When Jesus heard what had happened to John, he left in a boat and went to a lonely place by himself. But the crowds heard about it and followed him on foot from the towns. When he arrived, he saw a great crowd waiting. He felt sorry for them and healed those who were sick.” (NCV)

Mat 14:23 “After he had sent them away, he went by himself up into the hills to pray. It was late, and Jesus was there alone.” (NCV)

Luke 5:16 “..but Jesus often slipped away to be alone so he could pray.” (NCV)

Finally..
Psalm 62:1-2
“My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.”

Romans 8:35-39
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (NIV)

With Jesus you will never feel lonely again.

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