A Postcard From Heaven

Jesus is communicating at a heart to heart level

Daily Spirit & Word: 696: A Postcard From Heaven.

Jesus Knows What You Are Going Through.

Revelation: Letters to the Seven Churches; Smyrna.

Good morning my friends. With three couples we had another session of Marriage Preparation last night in Church, we were chatting mainly about communication, levels of communication. How there are five levels of conversation ranging from Hello: Which says very little at all, then sharing facts (it’s raining), then sharing of Views (I know it’s going to be sunny later), then sharing of Thoughts (I think I like the rain), then sharing of Feelings (when the rain splashes on my face it makes me feel awesome), then sharing of the Heart (How does the rain make you feel?). As we chatted it soon became obvious that there was a need to be sharing and communicating at a heart level more in all our relationships. When we share at a heart-to-heart level we don’t need to say very much at all.

In our second letter from Jesus to the Churches, you’ll observe that He doesn’t say very much at all to the church in Smyrna, it’s like a Postcard to the Persecuted Church, but we must bear in mind our LORD Jesus is communicating at a Heart-to-Heart level: He’s skipped over saying “Hello” and “I know this” and “I think this” and “I feel this” to “This is what it is”…

Revelation 2:8-11 (NIV)
8 “To the angel of the church in Smyrna write: These are the words of him who is the First and the Last, who died and came to life again.
9  I know your afflictions and your poverty—yet you are rich! I know the slander of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.
10  Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life.
11  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death.

Such a short letter to a church that’s undergoing severe persecution, but within such a few words so much is communicated. It’s like a well crafted line on a Valentines Card to a LOVED ONE: “Roses are red, violets are blue, storms may blast, but I’ll always love you”…

Jesus is encouraging those poor, poverty stricken, faithful under trial, persecuted and suffering believers. He wants them to know that He KNOWS. He sees everything that happens under the sun. He even sees into the Heavenly realms and knows all about Satan’s tactics to bring those brothers and sisters down.

Keep in mind as you go through the book of Revelation the whole counsel of Scripture. Within the pages of the Bible believers are warned by God, by Jesus and by the Holy Spirit that our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual forces of evil in the Heavenly realms. We might just think we’re going through trouble, because trouble is natural, earthly, but most trouble is stirred up by Satan to “Afflict” the saints on earth.

  • Remember how Satan came to Adam and Eve? They were in the Garden of Eden (Paradise) with everything they could ever need.
  • Remember how Satan came to Jesus in the Wilderness? He was in a Desert Place with nothing.

Satan will come and tempt you, when you are in plenty or in want in your life. There is no place on this earth, no circumstance that he will not use to try to get at you. Once you are a follower of Jesus, then Satan takes note of it and begins to attack you, trying to tempt you, trying to stop you following Jesus Christ. No one is exempt. If Satan can come and try and tempt Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who Created the Universe, then my friends, he is going to come and try and tempt you too. He hates the fact that you’ve been saved and are following Jesus.

Verse 10: “Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer” is a real encouragement to me today.

There’s NO NEED to BE AFRAID. Because you’ve got Jesus watching, you’ve got the Holy Spirit empowering, as Jesus did in the wilderness and overcame, you’ve got a Heavenly Father who loves you and cares for you and is watching out for you. He has promised that NOTHING in all Creation will be able to snatch you out of His all powerful hands. Submit yourselves to Him who is able to keep you from falling. Amen!

Verse 10: “I will give you the crown of life”… My friends, the gift of Eternal Life is waiting. Keep going!

NOTE: In the letter to Ephesians Revelation 2:1-7 yesterday, the promise at the end was: “I will give the right to eat from the tree of live, which is in the Paradise of God”… Today it’s “I will give you the crown of life”… Awesome promises from our Blessed Lord Jesus.

Like a Postcard To A Persecuted Church.

Like a Valentines Card Communicates His Heart.

You might be tempted to think: “They were going through all that trouble and hardship and that’s all that Jesus has to say to them, surely He could have encouraged them just a little bit more?” My friends, when you are communicating at a Heart-to-Heart level as Jesus does, you don’t need to say very much at all. Just as a Postcard reveals beautiful place and that everything’s going well. Just like a Valentines Card communicates the heart of LOVE: My friends, Just ONE WORD from the LORD will be enough to sustain you and keep you. Seek the LORD whilst He may be found.

Be blessed in Jesus today, be full of the Holy Spirit and you will be able to stand your ground against the enemy. Put on the whole armour of God (Ephesians 6:10-20).

BTW: Please, remember the levels of communication and try to get further than levels 1,2 and 3 to 4 and 5. Commune with one another at a Heart-to-Heart level.

LOVE: In Jesus,

Don.

NOTES: On Smyrna.

From The Commentary by J. Vernon McGee.

Smyrna is the martyr church, the church that suffered martyrdom for Christ. The word Smyrna means “myrrh” and carries the meaning of suffering.

The city of Smyrna is still in existence in our day. It has a Turkish name, Izmir, which may lead you astray, but it is the same city. It has been continuously inhabited from the time it was founded. I have been there; in fact, we stay in Izmir when we visit the sites of the early churches in that area. It is a commercial city. There are those who have told us that Izmir will soon be larger than Istanbul. It will certainly be a larger commercial center. There is a tremendous population there. The modern city covers so much of the ruins of ancient Smyrna that you are apt to miss the beauty which was there.

I have taken some pictures of it and use them as slides in an illustrated message. I try to point out the beauty of that harbor. It is very large and one of the most beautiful harbors that I have seen. In fact, Smyrna was one of the loveliest cities of Asia. It was called a flower, an ornament, and it has been called the crown of all Asia. The acropolis is located on Mount Pagos. In fact, the early city that goes back to about 2000 B.C., a Hittite city at that time, was built around the slope of Mount Pagos. Later Alexander the Great had a great deal to do with building it into the beautiful city that it became. There were wide boulevards along the slopes of Mount Pagos. Smyrna was called the crown city because the acropolis was encircled with flowers, a hedge, and myrtle trees. The city was adorned with noble buildings and beautiful temples — a temple of Zeus, a temple of Cybele (Diana), a temple of Aphrodite, a temple of Apollo, and a temple of Asclepius. Smyrna had a theater and an odeum, that is, a music center — it was the home of music. Also it had a stadium, and it was at that stadium that Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and student of the apostle John, was martyred, burned alive in A.D. 155.

In Christian literature, Smyrna means “suffering.” The Lord Jesus, in His letter addressed to the church there, said that He knew their sufferings and their poverty. He had no word of condemnation for them or for the church at Philadelphia. They were the churches that heard no word of condemnation from Him, and it is interesting that these two cities, Smyrna and Philadelphia, are the only two which have had a continuous existence. Their lampstand has really been moved, but there are a few Christians in Izmir. Although they are under cover, they have made indirect contact with us when we have been there. They do not come out in the open because Christians are persecuted even today in modern Turkey.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

 

Delight Yourself In The LORD

Delight yourself in the LORD

Daily Spirit & Word: 642: The Desires Of Your Heart.

 

Psalm 37:1-11
1 [ Of David.] Do not fret because of evil men or be envious of those who do wrong;
2  for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away.
3  Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
4  Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5  Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this:

6  He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.
7  Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when men succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.
8  Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil.
9  For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.
10  A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found.
11  But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace.

Good morning my friends, I was singing the little praise song; “Delight Yourself In The LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Then looked up the Scriptures: WOWzer! How awesome is Psalm 37?

I’ve just received news that a friend who was deemed to be here in the UK illegally, and was about to be deported, has been granted a reprieve. It’s totally AWESOME! She’s a real STAR and her trust in the LORD throughout all her trials is a wonder to behold. No matter what her circumstance, and they’ve been truly terrible, she’s resorted to; prayer, praise, trust and delight in the LORD. She witnessed to me the other day, “Don, even though I’m due to be removed from the UK, I’ve got real PEACE and the FEAR has been taken away. I’m trusting in the LORD”… How brilliantly awesome is that? Though her situation looked bleak; Her JOY in the LORD was evident.

LOOK WHAT THE PSALMIST SAID:

  • There are conditions to our PEACE and SAFETY in the Land.
  • There are conditions to our Heart’s Desire.
  • There are Conditions to our INHERITANCE.

WHAT ARE THE CONDITIONS?

TRUST: Trust in what? The strength of your arm? NO! The cunning or craftiness of your ways? NO! We are to TRUST in the LORD. Remember my friends, “It’s not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit says the LORD”.

DELIGHT: Delight is the second condition: Delighting in the LORD means praising HIM no matter what you are going through. He’ll deliver you. He’ll fight for you. He’ll watch your back.

COMMIT: Commit your ways to the LORD! Lay all your own plans before the LORD. Let Him direct your paths. We don’t know the future, but He does, so it’s much better to trust the one who knows what’s best for us.

BE STILL: When we’re still, we’re not doing anything. We’re not acting or working or plotting or planning. He’s got the situation that you’ve TRUSTED Him with, DELIGHTED in Him for: So why fret, why worry, He’s got it. “He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.”

REFRAIN FROM ANGER: You know it’s easy to get all heated-up and angry if we dwell upon our situations. However, when we: Trust, Delight, Commit and Be Still: All the fretting seems totally useless.

What happens when we trust the LORD like that? What happens when we live life totally dependent upon the LORD?

” But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace.” Psalm 32:11.

The next time you find yourself moaning, fretting or getting upset about something; Turn to this Psalm: Highlight those words in your Bible so you can find them again. Make a note at the front of your Bible: “When I’m feeling down and depressed I’m going to do what Psalm 37 tells me to do: Trust, Delight, Commit, Be Still and Wait on the LORD.” Turn to it often, commit it to memory.

Make a note at the front of your Bible: “When I’m feeling down and depressed I’m going to do what Psalm 37 tells me to do: Trust, Delight, Commit, Be Still and Wait on the LORD.” Turn to it often, commit it to memory. 

So today, sing that song with me and my friend, she’s totally overjoyed now. So am I.

“Delight yourself in the LORD and He will grant you the desires of your heart.”

Keep singing, Keep praising, Keep trusting and BTW “Do Good” Psalm 32:3 “Trust in the LORD and do good”.

Have an awesome weekend with Jesus the LORD my friends,

Don.

Another Song of FAITH and TRUST in the LORD

Delight yourself in the LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart.

Believe The Promises of Jesus Today

Daily Spirit & Word, 628:

BELIEVE THE PROMISES OF JESUS CHRIST.

Good morning my friends, there are many times when sincere followers of Jesus feel low.

What are we to do at these times?

  • When there is no joy in our religious activity?
  • When there is no sense of God’s presence?
  • When the Word of the Lord seems not to be speaking to “Me”? 
  • When we feel far away from the Lord?
  • When we want to know the Lord’s comfort, but find none?
  • When we try to pick ourselves up out of the dirt and fail

Listen afresh to what the LORD says concerning this kind of thirsting.

Trust afresh in ALL the Promises of Jesus.

“I will” it’s His PROMISE:

THE LORD PROMISES:

First to Israel: The Lord God Almighty (Jehovah) made many promises to His Chosen People Israel: These are promises: a promise is something that’s bound to happen and they cannot be revoked. Some of the Lord’s promises to Israel are not popular or positive; the promise to judge them and exile them if they turn away from Him. But His eternal promise that they will be His People and He will be their God is until Christ returns in Judgement.

Isaiah 44:1-5
1 “But now listen, O Jacob, my servant, Israel, whom I have chosen.
2  This is what the LORD says— he who made you, who formed you in the womb, and who will help you: Do not be afraid, O Jacob, my servant, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.
3  For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.
4  They will spring up like grass in a meadow, like poplar trees by flowing streams.
5  One will say, ‘I belong to the LORD‘; another will call himself by the name of Jacob; still another will write on his hand, ‘The LORD’S’, and will take the name Israel.

What an awesome series of promises from the Lord don’t you think? But now speak the following promises out loud to your thirsty soul.

THE LORD JESUS PROMISES:

These are PROMISES to those who’ve trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for Salvation and taken hold of Him as Saviour.

First: Jesus’ ENCOURAGEMENT TO OVERCOME:

Revelation 3:12-13 “Him who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it. I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on him my new name. 13  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”

WOWzer! What a wonderful promise: Jesus is going to write on you God’s Name and His Own New Name (Don’t know what that is yet do we?). We’ll be in God’s Temple and Never again will we leave it. (The Temple is the Presence of God).

Second: Jesus Christ and His Teachings and Commandments Are Your WISDOM:

Matthew 7:21-25 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22  Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23  Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.

Are you certain that you are IN CHRIST and that He is IN YOU? You’ll know, because God’s Spirit will let you know that you belong to God.

READ THE GOSPEL:

Watch Hell’s Best Kept Secret:

Third: Jesus Promise of ETERNAL LIFE & ETERNAL SECURITY:

John 10:24-30
24  The Jews gathered round him, saying, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.”
25  Jesus answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name speak for me,
26  but you do not believe because you are not my sheep.
27  My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
28  I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no-one can snatch them out of my hand.
29  My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no-one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.
30  I and the Father are one.”

WOWzer! Such a beautiful promise of Jesus “no one, nothing can snatch us out of The Lord Jesus’ hand or the Father’s hand.”

Finally: THE PROMISE OF FRESH PASTURE & ABUNDANT LIFE.

John 10:9-11
9  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.

Jesus gave His life so that you could experience ABUNDANT (FULL LIFE).

When the Father draws you by the Holy Spirit to put your faith and trust in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour, then once you’ve responded in repentance and faith, received the New Birth and become a member of God’s family; it’s forever!

Trust in these promises, AND ALL THE PROMISES OF JESUS, for there a many more: CLICK HERE.

  • WRITE OUT THE PROMISES OF JESUS IN THE BIBLE.
  • READ THEM ALL OUT LOUD.
  • BELIEVE THEM ALL AFRESH
  • TRUST IN JESUS AGAIN.
  • RECEIVE HIM AS LORD: AGAIN.
  • GET SOME FELLOWSHIP: There’s nothing better than gathering with the Saints to praise and worship the Lord together. Ask them to pray over you in the power of the Holy Spirit. 

You will be refreshed, you will be set on fire, you will know that He is your Lord.

Do you treasure the Promises of Jesus?

I’m hoping and praying that EVERY Follower of Jesus will be Full of His FRIDAY FRUIT today.

Don.

Note: Here are many more promises of Jesus: Click Here. A Downloadable FREE PDF:

The Promises of Jesus Christ

 

Come Back Rejoicing.

What would you do with rotten chicken?

Daily Spirit & Word, 622: Come Back Rejoicing.

Preaching The Good News: It’s Fantastic!

Good morning my friends, we came back rejoicing last night after being out on the streets of West Norwood sharing the Good News of Jesus. Though, like our fellow believers throughout the world, we must endure many hardships, our momentary troubles are nothing compared to the eternal joy of knowing that the Lord will use our efforts to save some from certain destruction in Hell.

Acts 14:21-22 “They preached the good news in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, 22  strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said.”

We were joined by Daniella last night, it was her first time out sharing Jesus with folks. She really did come back rejoicing, because she knew she’d planted the seed of God’s Word in people’s hearts. She noted that there were ‘believers’ in Jesus, who were still trusting in their own good works to enter into heaven rather than upon the finished work of the Lord Jesus on the Cross.

The reason we’ve got so many FALSE CONVERTS in West Norwood is because of the preaching in many places of a false Gospel message: It goes something like this, “Do you want to have true; joy, satisfaction, happiness and lasting peace in your life? (Who doesn’t?) Then accept Jesus into your heart and you will be saved”… They then tell people Jesus died for sinners and lead them through the so called “Sinner’s Prayer”. Once people ‘pray that prayer’ they tell them they are Christians and encourage them to get baptised in their church, attend worship and pay their membership fees. Yes my friends, “membership fees”. They gladly do that though, thinking they’re adding to their salvation by paying the price themselves. Then they’ll try and live a good life under the anointing of the Holy Spirit which is dished out by the ‘Anointed Man of God’.

How do we know this? We meet people from these churches every week on the streets. We only need talk for a few minutes to ascertain their true spiritual condition; false converts. Do you know my friends, even false converts overflow with JOY once they hear the true Gospel of Jesus? Why? Because it makes complete sense. They are also shocked that they hadn’t heard that message in their own church before and saddened that they’d been trusting in a false message, sometimes for many years.

MANY CONVERSATIONS:

Last night we got back and shared with each other about the people we’d shared Jesus with; Three Muslim young men, a Buddhist, a son of a Roman Catholic Priest (hardened against and bitter about the message of Christianity), many non-Christians and countless false converts. We also met with some real followers of Jesus from a Portuguese fellowship, and another church in West Norwood. Praise the Lord! We chatted with people at a bus-stop who said, “I’m a believer, but I don’t need to go to church”. Two teenage girls, one who wanted to go, but her friend wanted to stay and chat because her mum was a committed Christian. As we shared the Gospel she knew what she had to do to be saved, but hadn’t done it all. She told us of confessing her sin and asking for forgiveness, but her life hadn’t changed. We were able, in a few short minutes to show how she needed to trust in Jesus Christ and the reasons why. She walked away last night with assurance that when she fully trusts in Jesus Christ she will be saved, also that we’d pray for her poorly mother Denise. (Will you pray for Denise? She’s a real Christian who loves the Lord, shares the Gospel regularly with her daughter, but is too poorly to attend fellowship meetings. A tear came to the young girls eyes when I said, “I’m going to be praying for your mummy”…

I can’t write about all the conversations, but we know the LORD will use every word planted in the dear folks of West Norwood’s hearts last night.

Acts 14:21-22 “They preached the good news in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, 22  strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said.

Yes there were some hardships last night, some people were not interested at all, some took a tract and returned it immediately once they heard it was a Christian message, but be encouraged dear friends, because many more received tracts with joy, some with a smile, some asked for more so they could share them with friends. We had lots of conversations last night that led to a full presentation of the Good News, that’s our aim when we go out in the power of Jesus. Not just to give out tracts, but to engage people with the Good News.

What is the Gospel Message: The Good News that we shared last night?

Quickly: We share how people need Jesus because everyone has sinned against God by going against their own conscience’s alarm bells and breaking His Commandments by; lying, stealing, lusting (adultery), idolatry (making up a God in their own minds that will allow them to get away with sin), being disobedient to their parents. As people hear HOW they’ve sinned against God, then the GREAT NEWS suddenly makes complete sense: Jesus died upon the Cross to take our punishment upon Himself. He died in our place upon the Cross so that we can be saved on the Day of Judgement. God will give us a new heart and a new start in life once we put our trust in Jesus Christ for our Salvation. He’ll also give us assurance of a place in Heaven for all eternity. We’ll gladly serve the Lord with our lives, not because we’re trying to be ‘good enough’ but because of His love and gratitude because of what Jesus did to save us.

(You can read more of what we share by clicking here: THE GOOD NEWS).

We use illustrations to show people how to trust Jesus:

The Parachute: You wouldn’t jump out of a plane without one, because the law of gravity means we’d plunge to our death. In the same way, if we jump of planet earth when we die without a Saviour, then the Law of God means we’ll face His just and righteous judgement for our sins, we’ll be carrying them ourselves and the weight of them will take us all the way to Hell.

The Chicken That’s Gone Bad:

We share with folks that it makes sense that God cannot allow contaminated sinners into His Holy Heaven.

No one in their right mind would put a piece of rotten chicken in their fridge with the good, fresh chicken would they?

We ask people, “If you got home from the Supermarket and found that a piece of Chicken you’d just bought was rotten, stinking rotten. Would you put that piece in the fridge beside good pieces of chicken? They always answer, “No Way!” We ask them, “What would you do with that stinking rotten piece of Chicken?” They always answer, “I’d throw it in the bin”.

So the LORD cannot allow rotten sinners, who’ve broken His Commandments, into His Heavenly Dwelling Place, because we’d contaminate Heaven. God’s Wrath and Anger abides on anyone who tries to enter into Heaven with their sins still on them.

So we need to have our sins removed. The Good News: Only the blood of Jesus Christ, His Death upon the Cross, can remove our sins from us. He died in order that we might be cleansed from ALL SIN. He took our place upon the Cross for our sins.

AND MANY MORE 🙂

You should see people’s faces:

When you open up a person’s understanding, so that they can at last see their true Spiritual condition before God, they’ll be and are amazed at the good news of Jesus Christ. They’ll thank you! They did last night and they do every time we get into a conversation that leads to a full presentation of the Gospel. Non-Christians thank us, back-sliders say, “This is a wake-up-call”, we also cause Atheists to back-slide into belief in God.

But: Acts 14:21-22 “They preached the good news in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, 22  strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said.

We MUST go through many hardships in order that some may enter into the Kingdom of God.

We GO, but we come back REJOICING.

Why? Because, the LORD has been with us. He’s drawing people to Himself. The Holy Spirit is a work in people’s hearts the moment we open our mouth for Jesus. We’ve seen the TRUTH of the Bible’s Teaching: that “FAITH COMES BY HEARING” ( Romans 10:17 “Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.”

Can I encourage you, if you are a follower of Jesus Christ reading this message today, to GO and share your faith in the Lord Jesus? Everyone needs to HEAR the Gospel, some will be saved, others warned about God’s judgement to come, many encouraged in their walk with Jesus. But GO, because Jesus told you to share His Gospel Message. Go because your own faith and understanding will grow.

Philemon 1:6 “I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ.”

When we SHARE THE FAITH (The whole Gospel of Jesus Christ) our UNDERSTANDING of it increases. All the good things that we have in Christ make our hearts leap for JOY.

But most importantly GO because, Jesus came into this world to SAVE SINNERS. His hearts desire is that many more will be saved. He died in order that people get saved. He died because of His love for people. Let’s SAVE as many as we can for Jesus sake. Amen!

So Endure The Hardships with JOY.

Be at peace with Jesus today.

Don.

Things that will KEEP People OUT of Heaven.

Revelation 22:14-15 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. 15  Outside are the dogs, those who practise magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practises falsehood.”

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders 10  nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11  And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

Galatians 5:19-21 “The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20  idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21  and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Ephesians 5:5-7 “For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a man is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 6  Let no-one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. 7  Therefore do not be partners with them.

NOTE: You can also read this on our Church Facebook Page:

Enduring Many Hardships. Click Here for the Good News Page

The Sinners Prayer: Why we don’t encourage people to “Pray the Sinners Prayer”

 

How to ‘THINK’ God’s Way.

how to think God's Way

Daily Spirit & Word: 619: How To ‘THINK’ God’s Way.

He’s Encouraging You Today: Your Anxiety is Going to Be Removed: Peace will come into your heart and mind today.

 

Philippians 4:6-9
6  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
7  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8  Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
9  Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

Good morning my friends, I hope you remembered to put your clocks back an hour. It’s great to have an extra hour in bed once a year or an extra hour anyway. Imagine if they did it with a whole day? At midnight on a Saturday night, they decided to put the clocks back 24 hours so that it suddenly becomes midnight on a Friday… Wouldn’t that be brilliant? Or perhaps it would be better to do it on a Sunday, then for two days in a row we could gather together to worship the Lord. Which would you prefer? A Saturday shift or a Sunday? It’s never going to happen, but how we answer reveals something to us: How we would long to spend time and what our attractions in life are.

DO NOT BE ANXIOUS ABOUT ANYTHING

Following on from the teaching about DISASTER and learning not to WORRY, here, once again, we are reminded in such a loving way by the Lord through Paul not to get all anxious about anything.

I know, it’s easy to say, but so hard to do or to put into practice, but you can do it with the help of Jesus.

ANXIOUS: (Don’t Worry NLT and “Be Careful for nothing” KJV) Anxious in the NIV is a good choice of word.

Paul had already demonstrated to the Philippians exactly HOW to do what he revealing here: (Acts 16:16-40).

When in Philippi he and Silas were arrested, beaten severely and thrown into prison. What did he do? He and his companions began to sing and praise the Lord in the Prison. He could instead have been worried, moaned about his bruises and bleeding, fretted over how long they would keep him in prison, but NO! Instead of being anxious about the situation, Paul begins to praise the LORD. So much praise that the chains fall-off and Prison Guard gets converted. Awesome example!

What are we to do when we’re experiencing PRESSURES IN LIFE?

“in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

The Philippian Christians were experiencing severe pressures at the time; from both those not yet converted and also within the fellowship.

How did Paul want them to learn not to be ANXIOUS?

  • By PRAYER: Talk to God about it.
  • By PETITION: Take all your troubles to Jesus.
  • With THANKSGIVING: Praise the Lord, Sing Hymns / Songs of Praise and Thanks.
  • PRESENT: “present your requests to God”… Lay them all out before the LORD.

What is is that you want God to do for you right now? Then pray, petition and thank Him, laying your requests at the feet of the King. He’ll take those requests to His heart, because you are his precious child and He loves you.

What happens once we do that? The Lord reveals through Paul what happens “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

That phrase ‘transcends all understanding’ jumps RIGHT out at me today. Once you’ve prayed, petitioned and thanked the Lord and presented your requests to Him, then such a peace will come into your heart and mind, that you’ll wonder how it’s possible even in dire straits not to be worried.

What happened to Paul and Silas when they were in Prison and they Praised the Lord? Their chains fell off (Acts 16:26) Notice it wasn’t just the chains of Paul and Silas that fell off that day, but also all the other prisoners chains fell of too and the Guard came to know the Lord Jesus Christ that night as well. AWESOME… You are going to have such a PEACE when you take your troubles to Jesus. It will be a PEACE that will bring comfort to your heart and mind. It will be a PEACE that will also impact the lives of those around about you too.

THE WORLD WORRIES: THE WORLD GETS ANXIOUS.

To the world, we should always be worried, but you’ll experience a DIVINE PEACE in the midst of the storm.

Instead of loosing your head, running around like a headless chicken, flapping and getting into a state, you’ll be in a state of complete PEACE. HOW? Because you’ve taken it all to the LORD and then the floodgates of heaven have opened-up and drenched your heart with His PEACE… JOY UNSPEAKABLE floods your soul. and suddenly; worry, anxiety, drama is removed and you are at PEACE.

It’s such an amazing feeling: I’ve had that so many times in life my friends: When disaster strikes, and it will, every follower of Jesus Christ can sail through the storm, when every other ship would run for a safe harbour, the Christian can ride the storm in PEACE. Yes storms will come, but perhaps the LORD is teaching you in the STORM that you can still be a complete PEACE of heart and mind.

Once you are at PEACE: Your thinking will be transformed: You’ll be able to THINK like a BELIEVER: “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:9.

True, Noble, Right, Pure, Lovely, Admirable, Excellent, Praisworthy: Think, dwell upon, meditate, concentrate, ponder about these things.

It’s like when you hear a great piece of news, passing it on to others, thinking deeply about it.

Our society tends to do completely the opposite of this advice the Lord has given us through Paul: It thinks, dwells upon, meditates, concentrates and ponders; disasters, murders, thefts, floods, market crashes, broken toys, who’s leaving who, gossiping, etc… That’s how the world thinks: Watch the BBC News: There’s not much focus upon the TRUTH, NOBLE things in life, Right, Pure, Lovely or Admirable or Praiseworthy things. Normally, they’ll have just ONE feel-good story as a short tag at the end of the news broadcast. It’s as if the STORMS in the world and around about us are more important than ALL the good that’s going on. It’s NOT!

I’m sure there are many more wholesome things that could be getting far more attention. Imagine if they had a live-broadcast of people helping out at the foodbank? or if they were to be there with a camera when you didn’t respond with road-rage, but let the other driver out or overtake. The Camera always seems to focus upon the STORMS in life instead.

Remember the Song / Hymn: “I Surrender All”?

All to Jesus I surrender, I surrender all.

Oh my friends, let us take it ALL to Jesus right now.

All our troubles, fears, worries and anxieties in life.

Let’s be different from the World:

Lets dare to be different and even when disaster, hardship or trouble does come our way, then we will be able to sail through the storm in complete peace of heart and mind in Jesus, because we’ve taken them immediately to Jesus: with prayer, petition and thanksgiving. Perhaps, like Paul and Silas, we’ll see those chains fall off ourselves and all those living around about us too.

Prayer: We all know friends, family and neighbours who’re going through storms at the moment. Let’s pray for them now and encourage them to take their troubles to Jesus:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know you want us to bring EVERYTHING we’re going through in life to You. Please help us to learn to let go and let You deal with the storm. It’s hard to take our eyes off the waves Lord, but we know that when we present all our troubles to you, the storms will die down and we will be a peace in our heart and mind today. We know that it will be in such a way that it will transcend all understanding. Help us to pray Lord! Help us all to let go!” In Your Name, Lord Jesus, we pray. Amen!

Have an awesome Sunday, fully rested, praising the Lord.

PEACE in the LORD!

Don.

 

When Disaster Strikes: Don’t Worry!

Woolworth Fire 1979 Manchester.

Daily Spirit & Word, : When Disaster Strikes: Don’t Worry!

Seek First The Kingdom Of God: Don’t Worry!

{Isa 24:18 NLT} “Those who flee in terror will fall into a trap, and those who escape the trap will be caught in a snare. Destruction falls like rain from the heavens; the foundations of the earth shake.” But DON’T WORRY <3

My wife Julie and I were watching the BBC News coverage of the Woolworth’s fire in Manchester 1979, many years ago now. It was a terrible tragedy. We also read in the Newspapers over the following days horrific accounts and miraculous escapes. One reported afterwards about a man who had escaped the fire ran out into the street and got knocked over by a double-decker bus and was killed instantly. Imagine that? Escaping the FIRE only to be KILLED by a Bus. (I can’t find the story on the internet now, if anyone can, please let me know).

Woolworth Fire 1979 b Woolworth Fire 1979 c Woolworth Fire 1979

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He had escaped the fire only to be killed by a bus:

When the LORD decides it’s time for you to go, nothing will stop it.

DON’T WORRY: God is pleased to give you the Kingdom.

{Luk 12:25-32 NIV} 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest? 27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you–you of little faith! 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. 32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.

When Tragedy Strikes: Don’t Worry! Trust the LORD.

None of us can ADD a single hour to our life by worrying: So trust in the Lord and LIVE worry free. When He’s got your place ready for you, then He’ll come a take you Home for all Eternity. There have been many tragedies we’ve experienced in our short lives and some of them took us ages to get over, but thankfully the LORD has been so good to us in so many other ways, and even through those horrible times, He’s revealed His awesome presence and comfort. I’m going to keep trusting Jesus.

Praise the Lord: Have a FANTASTIC FRIDAY.
Wonderful Weekend in Jesus.!

Don.

 

How Are You Getting Things Done Today?

Doing it God's Way

Daily Spirit & Word: 571:

How Are You Getting Things Done Today?

The Camping Trip:

One day a father and son went for a camping trip in the woods and they needed to build a good fire-surround for the duration of their stay. So the father and son started to gather rocks to make a wall for the fire. The little boy was helping gathering stones, but the father said, “Son we need rocks, big rocks, not little stones” So the son went out and found a great big rock, but after trying for ages he couldn’t lift it. The father saw his son’s sweat, frustration and exhaustion, so he asked his son, “Are you using all your strength?” The boy said, “Yes Daddy”, but then the father said, “You’re not son, because you haven’t asked me to help you”. He explained, “Son, you don’t just have muscles, but you have a brain, you know that you and I can lift that rock easily together.” So they did and together they built the best fire-surround-wall, now they could sit and relax and enjoy the warmth and utility of the fire for the whole camping trip.

My friends, so many Christians are doing things in our own strength today, but the Bible tells us how we can do it so much easier;

NOT BY OUR OWN STRENGTH:

Zechariah 4:6  “So he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.”” 

not might, not strength, but by Holy Spirit
Spirit POWER

The Bible says it’s NOT by our own might or power that we’re going to get anything done, but by God’s Spirit. The HOLY Spirit.

My friends, Jesus said some things very like that too;

John 15:5-8 5  “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6  If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7  If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. 8  This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

Jesus wants you to be able to be fruitful, but He knows that apart from Him that it’s impossible for you.

So many Christians are trying their best to be ‘good’ Christians, but they are NOT availing themselves of the POWER to be what God has called them to be, they’re trying their best in their own strength.

My friends, we NEED to stop being like that little boy, stop trying to get things done all by ourselves and cry out to our Father in Heaven, cry out to your loving Lord Jesus and cry out to the Holy Spirit: When you do, do you know what? You’re going to get a fantastic surprise, your Father in Heaven is like the father in the story, He’s waiting, He’s watching, He’s Longing for you to just admit you can’t do it all by yourself and you need His help.

  • He’s waiting! 
  • Are you tired of the struggle?
  • He’s Longing!
  • Are you weary of the battle?
  • He watching!
  • Are you ready to give up and try the BEST way to get this Christian life done?

Have an awesome day in the power and presence of GOD: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Prayer: Oh dear Lord Jesus, forgive me for my pride and foolishness in thinking I can do it all by myself. I admit that I need You just as much today as I did when I started to follow You as my Lord and Saviour. Please Lord, help me to trust You with everything and when I feel the struggle, to cry out to You quickly for the help that I need, and I know now that You are just watching, longing and waiting for me to shout out to you for that help. I know You are available and ready when I’m going to call. Amen!

My friends, call to Jesus Christ today and know that He’s just longing to help you in everything.

Stay blessed in Jesus.

Don.

P.S. Discover The Spirit Filled Life

Doing it God's Way
Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the LORD Almighty.

 

God’s Reward For Those Who Endure Persecution

Persecution of Christians

Daily Spirit & Word: 540: God’s Reward For Those Who Endure Persecution.

Standing Firm To The End.

Good morning my friends, we had an amazing visit from e-Gangs Website in church yesterday. It’s an off-shoot ministry of David Wilkerson’s “Teen Challenge”, they are going back to their roots, reaching people who’re involved in the street-gang culture and those who may be drawn into that way of life. Everyone who spoke yesterday had a background in drugs, imprisonment and gangs or street life. They gave powerful testimonies of how God had delivered them from the darkness into the light.

What struck me deeply was the fact that God can and will reach into the hearts of those that we deem ‘un-reachable’. There is no heart or soul that is not like an open book to the Holy Spirit. He can penetrate all the passwords and access the secret places. On the outside a tough gang member looks scary and must appear to be so to his friends, but more often than not on the inside is a frightened, frustrated and fearful little boy. He’s been looking for; family, security, friendship and fun all his life. He’ll find that in gang-culture and we also know that once a person comes to Jesus and surrenders, they’ll also get that in God’s Kingdom Family. Once you’ve got Jesus, you’ve got family and friends.

It was Paul’s wife who spoke powerfully yesterday from God’s Word about Jacob, who was touched in the HOLLOW PLACE and that’s what God needs to do with each and every one of us too; to touch us in the places of need: We fill that void with the things of this world, but they were meant to be filled with the one who created the world and gave us life.

Afterwards, I was speaking with someone who’s family didn’t understand what had happened to him since he trusted Jesus. They saw a change in his nature, character and lifestyle, but they were not yet ready for that kind of change and rejected him. So don’t be surprised if people don’t ‘get you’ once you get Jesus.

“Don’t be surprised if people don’t get you once you get Jesus.”

Mark 13:9-13 (NIV) Persecutions In The End Times. 
9  “You must be on your guard. You will be handed over to the local councils and flogged in the synagogues. On account of me you will stand before governors and kings as witnesses to them. 10  And the gospel must first be preached to all nations. 11  Whenever you are arrested and brought to trial, do not worry beforehand about what to say. Just say whatever is given you at the time, for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit. 12  “Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child. Children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 13  All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.

Pilgrim’s Progress:

At the end of Pilgrim’s journey, just before the gates of Heaven, there was another doorway that led to Hell. The Christian must stand firm with Jesus Christ all the way to the end. He never promised us and easy ride through life. Jesus didn’t say, “Come to me and trust me as Saviour and everything will be OK from that point on”. In fact, Jesus warned His followers of the opposition and persecution they would endure for His sake. Just because they were followers of Christ, they’d be hated, lied about and betrayed.

What’s most difficult is the fact that members of a Christian’s own family would betray them, even when that betrayal meant death. This has happened my friends; in History and even today, Christians are being taken to courts, even here in the United Kingdom (UK), just for being obedient followers of Jesus Christ. We’re living in an increasingly ‘Christianophobic’ society; there’s a deep fear and suspicion of believers. Many things are being said about us; “Christians are narrow-minded”, “Christians are bigots”, “Christians hate people” etc…  These accusations are not new, the world has hated Christians from the beginning.

We’ll admit to following a ‘narrow-path’ that leads to eternal life, but that doesn’t mean we’re narrow-minded, quite the opposite in fact, because we know that the Gospel is for everyone, the good news is for all people on earth; that’s the most open minded kind of message I’ve ever heard.

“Christians are Bigots”: What about that statement? What is a Bigot?

Meaning of Bigot: A prejudiced person who is intolerant of any opinions differing from his own.

Well, we’ve got to admit that in some instances we’re guilty of being Bigoted. We do hold opinions, but they are not our own, they come from God. We don’t follow our own understanding or our own logic or reasoning, but we hold unswervingly to the opinions, decrees, dictates and commands of our LORD.

There is an element of truth in every false statement and characterisation of Christians. We can be seen as being bigoted because we will not be shaken from our belief that the plain meaning of God’s Word has a final say in any matter relating to life. However, what’s confusing for the people in the world, those who are still in darkness, is that not everyone who calls themselves ‘Christian’ actually follows God’s Word. It’s only those who are filled and empowered by God’s Holy Spirit who will endure all hardships, accusations and trials to the end.

  • Have you been feeling persecuted for your faith lately?
  • Are you enduring or are you feeling like you need to give in and follow the crowd, follow the world’s way?

Jesus has warned us that the world hates (cannot tolerate) committed followers of His teachings.

Not only will you experience this intolerant attitude from the world, but they’ll not be understanding either. They will not take time to sit down with believers and ask them, “Why is it that you think this way?”

Why? Why don’t they want to understand? Why will they run away from a knowledge and understanding of why Christians only follow God’s Word? It’s because deep down, they already KNOW, because God has written His Laws upon their hearts too.

Hebrews 8:10 (NIV) “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.”

Hebrews 10:16 16  “This is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds.” 

So people who don’t yet know Jesus as LORD, who are still in the darkness, already have God’s LAW (Moral, Holy Standards) written upon their hearts and minds. That’s why they don’t want to know why Christians will not move or change their minds about certain ways of living or being in the world today, because they already KNOW, they just don’t want to live God’s way.

Staying With Jesus To The END:

God wants you to persevere to the end: To HOLD Unswervingly (that could be called in a bigoted or narrow-minded way) to the hope we profess.

Hebrews 10:23-25 23  Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
24  And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds. 25  Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. 

Remembering HOW you were delivered from DARKNESS into the LIGHT is critically important for believers today: Because this will encourage you to endure to the END.

Hebrews 10:32-36  “Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering. 33  Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated. 34  You sympathised with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions. 35  So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. 36  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.”

What is it that God has promised those who endure to the end? The CROWN of LIFE:

God’s PROMISE: The Crown of LIFE:

James 1:12 “Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.”

If we keep in mind eternity, then we’ll always be able to endure any hardship.

This place (anywhere on earth) is NOT the Christian’s HOME or Home Country, because our HOME and our HOPE is HEAVEN.

It is my hope and prayer that every true follower of the Lord Jesus Christ will find fellowship, family and fun whilst here on the earth, but also that if and when things get tough, you’ll also be able to endure every hardship to the end. Praying for Christ’s indwelling power for an exciting week.

Have an awesome week, enduring all things for Christ’s sake.

Don.