When Hearts Are Ready For Jesus

Jesus is waiting for you

Daily Spirit & Word: 808: When Hearts Are Ready For Jesus.

He’s READY for You.

Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV) “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”

Last night was brilliant, it was cold, windy and I’d had a dozy of a day and didn’t feel much like going out to share the Good News of Jesus in the cold again. Because I’d been out in the cold all day and gotten frozen to the core. Sitting in the car for hours waiting for the AA man to come and fix our flat tyre. Then standing around chatting while he changed my wheels around. In the old days you’d have a spare in the boot or under the car, but now Vauxhall Motors just give you a mastic sealing compound to inject into the burst tyre, only it didn’t work. We eventually got the car to QuickFix and they sorted it out in about half an hour. Whilst waiting though, the sun was shining on the fast moving storm clouds and the sky looked so awesome, so I just had to praise the LORD.

So although I didn’t feel like it, I arrived in church to find two of our men, David and Les, waiting to go out. Then Isaac arrived and we knew we’d have to go. We prayed and sang a song, asking Jesus to open hearts on this cold and windy night and give us some people who were ready to hear the Gospel Good News of Jesus. Oh my friends, when you’ve had a day like we’d had and pray to Jesus like that, He doesn’t disappoint.

Before going we folded some new little tracts: They’re brilliant for springboards into conversations with folks. You can get yours from this link: The 4 Points.

t4ptract2

We chatted with one man for ages, but he wasn’t really that open to the good news (yet). He was so wrapped up in what he’d experienced in life and was understandably bitter about being thrown out of his home whilst he was in hospital. All his belongings had been thrown onto the streets and most of his life-time’s treasures, mementoes and keepsakes had disappeared, lost forever. He’d been left with absolutely nothing. So after chatting we asked if he’d let us pray for him. All three of us knelt down on the cold ground and began to pray to the Lord for him. He was so warm and thankful afterwards. We left him with some tracts and shared the way to Jesus with him before leaving. It’s sometimes so right that we need to listen and hear their story first, before they are ready to hear what we’ve got to give. David made sure that he understood clearly about real repentance and trusting in Jesus.

Next we met a man who seemed quite open. He’d had a Roman Catholic upbringing and was a bit sceptical of ‘religion’, because the Nuns who taught him were quite severe  and strict with their discipline. He’d been serving in the church in various ways over the years. He’d even been paid as a pallbearer at funerals. After listening for a short while this time I asked him how a Roman Catholic gets into Heaven. He said, “We just have to try our best and be good”… I asked him, “Do you think you’ve been good enough?” He said, “No, I’ve been pretty bad”… Honest or what! So I said, “Where will you be spending eternity?” He said, “Oh I don’t know if I believe in a Heaven and Hell like that”…

Well after reasoning with him and opening up his conscience in the usual way, using God’s Commandments, he was then very open to hear about the Good News of Jesus and the prospect of being forgiven and receiving new life. He was so convicted, so after praying with him by the traffic lights we turned back to David’s car to get him a Bible.

Derek shared some amazing things about his life with us last night, it seemed to me that God had been preparing his heart to meet with us. He said, “I prayed for the first time in years yesterday”. He’d been praying to the Lord for other people and for the world. So when we prayed for Him, it was God’s way of showing him he’d heard his prayers.

Why is it always when we are praying that noisy motorbikes seem to stream past revving their engines? 🙂 Undeterred, we pressed the Gospel home and checked that Derek understood what he was going to do to be saved. I asked him when he was going to get right with Jesus? He said, “NOW”.

Walking back through the churchyard we joked and laughed, then Derek was very thankful and overjoyed to receive his new Bible. He was so open and honest, I hope we’ll see him again soon.

Although we gave out a few more little Gospel tracts and chatted briefly with a few folks, these two conversations were on my heart last night. So will you please pray for Everton and Derek?

When you have a horrible day, and things seem to be going all wrong, be ready, because Jesus just might be getting you into the right frame of mind to be His servant and witness of the JOY of the LORD. Thankfully we’d asked Him for the Holy Spirit’s anointing before going out. One man thought I was psychic, but I said, “No, it’s the LORD who gives us words to say”…

Sharing The Good News with folks on cold nights can be fun. However, we do pray for more of these kind of openhearted encounters, where hearts, minds, souls and wills are prepared, ready and open for the Good News of Jesus Christ.

We’re praying for more Labourers in God’s Harvest Field:

So that many more will be sharing Jesus, because those strangers and the ones you know and love who don’t know Jesus yet, need Him much more than they realise. It because we’ve all got a Divine Appointment we can’t escape: Hebrews 9:27 (KJV) “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:”  My friends, everyone is going to give an account of their lives before Him on Judgement day, and from what the Bible tells us, we’re all going to fall short of Heaven’s entry requirements.  Romans 3:23 (NIV) “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” We don’t want anyone to end up in the place that’s been reserved for Satan and his demonic army. (Revelation 20:10-15). Let’s get a heart that’s been warmed by the love of Jesus and share the Good News, because FAITH comes by hearing and they’ll only hear if someone goes and shares Jesus with them.

Many people don’t think they know enough about the Bible or their faith, however, the truth is, we’ll only really get a complete and full understanding of our faith when we’re ready to share it with others. God spoke through Paul to us all when he wrote Philemon.

Philemon 1:6 (NIV) “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.”

The fullness of understanding comes when we are active in sharing the Gospel… God’s going to give you personal revelation of all the good things you have in Christ. The Scriptures will open up and reveal treasures… My friends, God shares His secrets with His obedient friends.  Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV) “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”

So don’t ever think you don’t know enough, because if you’ve got Jesus, been born of Holy Spirit, have a basic understanding of the good news, then you’ve got everything you need. It’s when you begin sharing that God will give you even more insight and understanding.

My tough day was nothing when compared to those who suffered and died yesterday in the Croydon Tram Accident. It’s so shocking. I can’t tell you how much this has affected so many people where we live. However, when you’ve had a tough day please remember that the LORD Jesus Christ is only a prayer away.

It hits hope to me the importance of being ready to share Jesus with folks. True JOY will come. Some people’s hearts have been prepared by Him ready for you to share the Good News. Jesus is working with us, He’s with us as we share. Oh the JOY of seeing someone come to Him.

Be blessed and filled afresh with Holy Spirit. He’ll give you a fire that cold nights can’t put out.

Praise the LORD!

Don.

PLEASE PRAY:

Yesterday in Tram Accident in Croydon: Mail Online Tram Accident.

Many of us have been shocked and saddened by the tragic accident yesterday in Croydon. Our prayers and thoughts are with the families of those who lost their lives. Five people killed and over fifty people seriously injured.

Because this is so local to us, we will be remembering all those affected and who died at our Remembrance Service on Sunday.

 

 

Keep Going In The Spirit

Sowing and Reaping, God cannot be mocked

Daily Spirit & Word: 697:

Keep Going In The Spirit

Sowing and Reaping.

Galatians 6:7-10 (NIV)
7  Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
8  The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
9  Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
10  Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
 Good morning my friends, well what a stormy day yesterday was, I wasn’t looking forward to going out onto the streets sharing the Good News, it was cold and dark and wintry weather. However, we had a good team gathered to go, six of us from St Luke’s, so we split-up into twos; David and Sherrie, Ben and Gemma and Judy and me; after watching the newest video from “A New Reformation”, we were all fired-up to see the Lord at work in people’s lives. You know something, when you go in faith, you will not be disappointed my friends, we had some truly amazing encounters in sharing the Gospel and chatting with people about God’s Kingdom.
When we got back to the Parish Office afterwards and we all shared what happened, we saw that the Lord was with us. I love hearing from others how the Lord has used them and what He does is fantastically good. Even after years of sharing the Gospel I’m always encouraged and refreshed by how faithful Jesus Christ is to His Word.
When we look at those verses above from Galatians, you can be sure that God is serious; “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man (or woman) reaps what he sows”… Galatians 6:7. Now that’s a sobering verse from God’s Word.
Jesus gave us similar teaching in so many different ways: Sowing and Reaping.
In the Old Testament we see this principle illustrated in the lives of ancient forefathers and peoples.

 Jacob: Genesis 27-31.

Did you know that Jacob was a trickster: He pulled a fast-one on his older brother and father. He covered himself in animal hair to look, smell and feel like his older brother. He did so because his father Isaac was getting old and blind and Jacob wanted the blessing due to his older brother. You know the story, but he eventually succeeded and ran away to avoid a clash with his angry brother. REAPING WHAT YOU SOW: Jacob really did get blessed by God, but he also REAPED. He fell in love with Rachel and wanted to marry her. Rachel’s dad made Jacob work for seven years before he would be able to marry her. After those seven long years, he was looking forward to his wedding night. After all the ceremony was over, he removed the veil and lo and behold, he’d not married Rachel, but Leah her older sister. (You can read all about Jacob in Genesis 27-31, you’ll see what a trickster he was and how he REAPED WHAT HE HAD SOWN).
Isn’t that amazing? You reap what you sow. He tricked his father and brother, now his father-in-law had tricked him. He was the younger brother and he tricked his older brother. He wanted the younger sister Rachel, but was tricked into marrying the older sister Leah. You reap what you sow.
  • When you plant tomatoes (as I’m about to do in the next few days), you’ll reap little tomatoes.
  • When you plant potatoes, you’ll not get grapes at the harvest time, but little potatoes.
  • You reap what you sow.
Think Seriously About Mocking God: If we’re sowing to our FLESH then watch out.
Leviticus 26:14-20 (NIV)
14  ” ‘But if you will not listen to me and carry out all these commands,
15  and if you reject my decrees and abhor my laws and fail to carry out all my commands and so violate my covenant,
16  then I will do this to you: I will bring upon you sudden terror, wasting diseases and fever that will destroy your sight and drain away your life. You will plant seed in vain, because your enemies will eat it.
17  I will set my face against you so that you will be defeated by your enemies; those who hate you will rule over you, and you will flee even when no-one is pursuing you.
18  ” ‘If after all this you will not listen to me, I will punish you for your sins seven times over.
19  I will break down your stubborn pride and make the sky above you like iron and the ground beneath you like bronze.
20  Your strength will be spent in vain, because your soil will not yield its crops, nor will the trees of the land yield their fruit.

Time Doesn’t Matter:

Did you know that they’ve found wheat seeds in the ancient Egyptian Tombs, they planted those 3000 year old seeds, guess what they got at harvest time? Wheat! Those seeds did not forget what they were after all those years in the tomb. My friends, God keeps a perfect record, and at the judgement throne of Jesus Christ, every believer will REAP WHAT THEY HAVE SOWN. God cannot be mocked.
Galatians 6:8  “The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”
 If we’ve sown to our flesh, then from that flesh we shall reap corruption (diseases and eventually premature death).
If we’ve sown to the Holy Spirit, then we shall reap everlasting life.
A man or woman REAPS WHAT THEY HAVE SOWN.
God cannot be mocked. So many believers are convinced that God will just ‘wink’ at their sins because they’ve repented and put their trust in Jesus Christ. They’ll say, “Jesus died upon the Cross for my sins, past, present and future, so I’m forgiven”… That’s right my friends, you have been forgiven, you are blessed with the gift of eternal life, but God wants to reward us for the good things we’ve done whilst in the body: but His rewards also include REAPING what we have SOWN. If we sow to the fleshly sinful nature, then God will reward us in kind. God cannot be mocked: He will not just wink at your sinful choices on the day when you come face to face with Jesus Christ. Remember God’s chosen, blessed and elected people of old: Jacob, Joseph, King David and Solomon… They were all God’s Chosen and Anointed: but they ALL, every single one of them, REAPED what they had sown to their SINFUL natures. God cannot be mocked.
If ever there was a sobering verse in the Bible it’s this one for every truly born again believer: “God cannot be mocked”… We can’t pull-the-wool over God’s eyes. We can’t trick Him. We can’t hide it from Him. He sees and Knows EVERYTHING we do.
Don’t forget those amazing words of encouragement too: Galatians 6:9 “9  Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. “
In Britain, we are one of the most watched nations on earth today: CCTV Cameras can see our every move. We walk up the street and little cameras are watching us. We go on a train or tube, or bus, there are little cameras filming us. CCTV is everywhere.
God wants us to KNOW that we are being observed from Heaven too.
Hebrews 12:1-6 (NIV)
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.”
We’re reminded that we are being watched from Heaven: God disciplines us now, He doesn’t want us to loose our rewards in Heaven, but wants to bless us with so many great and wonderful things, but God cannot be mocked. You will REAP what you have SOWN.
I love the Message Paraphrase of these verses from Galatians:
Galatians 6:7-10 (MSG)
7  Don’t be misled: No one makes a fool of God. What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God!— 8  harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life.
9  So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. 10  Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of faith.

Response:

  • Repent and turn again to Jesus.
  • Confess your sins to Him now.
  • Seek the fullness of the Holy Spirit now.
  • God cannot be mocked, you will reap what you have sown.
  • Do it immediately.

Last night we met a young man who played in the worship team in his uncle’s church for years. He knew all about being “Born Again” but was waiting until the time was ‘right’ to get right with Jesus. Imagine that, in the WORSHIP TEAM for years, knowing the Gospel and just waiting until the time is right. He was too young to need Jesus, he thought. He was waiting. My friends, imagine what would have happened if that young man had waited and got knocked over by a bus, where would he be spending his Eternity? We need Jesus NOW. We can’t play at being ‘Church’. God cannot be mocked.

 Then, If we sow to the spirit, then from the spirit we shall reap a wonderful harvest in God’s Kingdom. So don’t get weary in doing good my friends, especially to those who are from the household of faith, brothers and sisters in Jesus’ Kingdom Family.
Prayer: Oh Lord Jesus Christ, when I think of the times that I’ve chosen to feed my sinful nature, it fills me with great sadness. When I’ve chosen the flesh over the Spirit, I know that Heaven has been watching, the “Great Cloud of Witnesses” However, I know that when I turn to You in faith and true repentance, I’m forgiven, cleansed and renewed in Spirit. I know that You discipline those who come to You Lord. Help me today in my walk with You, I want to be full of Your Holy Spirit so that I can live the abundant holy life that You have called me for. I want to live in obedience to Your teachings Lord Jesus. Amen!!
 It was so good going out last night to share the Gospel with folks on the streets, the LORD was with us then, He’s with us NOW. If you are a believer in Jesus, there’s not a moment in time that He’s not with you. You have been set-apart and sealed with God the Holy Spirit. LIVE like the Prince or Princess that you are. You are an Ambassador for Jesus in this world, let them see Jesus in you.
Don.
P.S. Please pray for the people we chatted with last night. We had brilliant conversations and shared the Gospel with: Ebeneezer, Craig, Ada and and Italian man called Carlos.  Pray also for all those that the other members of the team chatted with and the many who received Gospel tracts but were just too busy or in a rush to get home last night.

Sowing to the Spirit or the Flesh:

Paul puts it like this: For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption (6:8a). Every time we nurse a grudge, spread gossip, linger in bad company whose influence we cannot long resist, every time we watch or read pornographic materials, we are sowing seeds that will reap corruption in our fellowship with God, our families, and our witness.

But he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting (6:8b). What does it mean to sow to the Spirit? It means we allow the Spirit to do things that produce the fruit of the Spirit in our lives (5:22-23a).

When we sow to the Spirit, we also will reap life everlasting. The word everlasting refers not only to the duration of life but also the quality of life. Therefore, we can experience heaven here and now. How does Jesus express this fact in John 10:10b?
Journey Series – Book Studies – Journey Series – Book Studies.

Respecting What the LORD Provides

Familiarity breeds contempt

Daily Spirit & Word: 606:

Respecting What The LORD Provides.

Learning to call for the LORD’s Help when we feel we can’t cope.

Numbers 11:4-14 The People Crave Meat.
4 The rabble with them began to crave other food, and again the Israelites started wailing and said, “If only we had meat to eat!
5  We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost—also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic.
6  But now we have lost our appetite; we never see anything but this manna!”
7  The manna was like coriander seed and looked like resin.
8  The people went around gathering it, and then ground it in a hand mill or crushed it in a mortar. They cooked it in a pot or made it into cakes. And it tasted like something made with olive oil.
9  When the dew settled on the camp at night, the manna also came down.
10  Moses heard the people of every family wailing, each at the entrance to his tent. The LORD became exceedingly angry, and Moses was troubled.
11  He asked the LORD, “Why have you brought this trouble on your servant? What have I done to displease you that you put the burden of all these people on me?
12  Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth? Why do you tell me to carry them in my arms, as a nurse carries an infant, to the land you promised on oath to their forefathers?
13  Where can I get meat for all these people? They keep wailing to me, ‘Give us meat to eat!’
14  I cannot carry all these people by myself; the burden is too heavy for me.

It’s a common problem: Instead of offering thanks for what the Lord chooses to provide for us, we crave other things.

Ingratitude and Disrespecting God:

It led to the Lord being aroused to Holy ANGER.

I don’t know if you’ve ever done something wonderful for someone only to have it thrown back in your face? Have you ever spent time carefully making something and the person you are making it for makes a face as if they are eating horse dung?

We’d just been married a few weeks when my young and beautiful wife made me a stew: It was one of our first meals together in our new home. The table had been set and she called me, then served me a steaming hot plate of stew. It tasted great, but the meat was like leather. Instead of gratefully just chewing and enjoying it, I declared, “It’s horrible, I can’t eat that, it’s too tough”… I can’t tell you how bad it make me feel when I think back at just how insensitive I was back then. How dreadful I was to my wife. Imagine, she’d taken time to make me a lovely meal and I’d shoved it back in disgust. Even now I can see the hurt expression upon my young brides face.

Thankfully, we’ve been married for 36 years now, we can look back and laugh at how stupid and ignorant I was. I’ve learned to be more appreciative of all that she does for me, taking into account the preparation time and effort. No matter what she serves me now, I always say thank you darling. Most of the time her food tastes fantastic, but no matter I’ve learned to show appreciation: It’s called RESPECT.

God tells us: “Husbands respect, honour your wives”

Now, here in Numbers, the Lord has set the people free from captivity in Egypt and He’s providing miracle food from Heaven every day, it’s called Manna and the Israelites, instead of appreciating and respecting what He’s providing, begin to grumble and complain and wish they were slaves in Egypt again. How UNGRATEFUL: How DISRESPECTFUL they’d become. But not towards a human being only, but to their Creator God. Instead of thanking Him every day; they throw it back in His Holy face and declare “We want MEAT”… “We don’t like this Manna, we want MEAT”…

It’s an amazing account and well worth taking time to sit down and read the whole story in Numbers 11. However, Moses also begins to complain to the Lord about the Israelites and their constant grumbling. He can’t cope with it, he needs help and cries to the Lord “I cannot carry all these people by myself; the burden is too heavy for me”. Of course Moses was right, there was no way he could manage over half-a-million souls on his own, he did need help, but the Lord was just testing him, waiting for the moment that Moses would cry out and ask. For the Lord gave 70 Elders the same Holy Spirit that was upon Moses and equipped them to Prophesy and Lead the People with Him.

Many times, we’ll be going through stuff, we’ll struggle and try out best, we’ll tire ourselves out and feel that the burden is just too heavy for us to bear. However, just like He was with Moses, the LORD is waiting for the moment that you conclude, “I can’t cope alone”… “I can’t carry this heavy burden by myself”  When you get to that point, or even before it, do what Moses did, cry out to the LORD. He did the right thing, Moses didn’t just grumble to other people, He took his problem to the Lord, the only one who could solve his problem.

So often I’ve observed: People struggle, strive and labour, but they don’t ASK the LORD for His holy help. They complain and get bitter. My friends, don’t wait until you reach that point of not being able to cope; instead take all your problems, you struggles and your predicaments to the LORD. Talk to Him about it and ask Him to give you assistance. He’s waiting.

In contrast to Moses, the people of Israel just grumbled, they complained to each other, the got bitter against the Lord and Moses His servant. Instead of giving thanks and praising the Lord for His awesome miracle provision, they grumbled about it and complained and showed total disrespect. No wonder the ANGER of the LORD was aroused.

FAMILIARITY BREEDS CONTEMPT:

At first the Israelites were so thankful for the Lord’s miraculous provision of miracle Manna from Heaven: How quickly they’d become so used to it that they began to grumble and crave earthly food. Familiarity really does breed contempt. They’d gotten to the point of disrespecting the miraculous. WOWzer! Warning, Warning, Warning…. (Remember the Robot in Lost in Space?)

So the LORD gave in and provided what they were craving: MEAT.

However, the LORD went OTT (Over the top)… He gave them way too much meat. Eventually they realised their error, but they learned the HARD way to be appreciative.

How’s your RESPECT for what the Lord has provided for your life?

Are you really full of THANKSGIVING?

It’s harvest thanksgiving time: So let’s all try and be genuinely thankful to the LORD for all He’s provided for our life on this awesome earth.

Of course we have the teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ and He reveals that He is the TRUE MANNA (bread) from Heaven. He wants us to rely upon Him, when life gets too much for you to cope with: Cry out to Jesus. He really is the BREAD of Heaven and will supply ALL that you need in life. Turn to Him today. (John 6:25-59. Jesus the True Bread From Heaven)

Don.

 

Harvest Sunday: God Wants You to be FRUITFUL.

The Feast of Tabernacles: God Dwells with His Chosen People

Daily Spirit & Word: 603: The Harvest Feast For All Nations.

This Harvest Sunday: God wants you to be fruitful and to increase.

Good morning my friends, wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could go back to the Jewish way of celebrating Harvest: Tabernacles (Tents or booths): It’s mentioned a few times in the Old Testament, it was a feast primarily for the People of God; the Israelites, but it was also a feast for ALL NATIONS. As I was reading and studying Tabernacles in the Bible I’d forgotten just how much of a LIGHT TO THE NATIONS God had called His chosen people to be. Also that He makes every follower of Jesus into a kind of TABERNACLE (Dwelling place of God, by His Spirit).

The Feast of Tabernacles: (Booths): 

Deuteronomy 16:13-17 Celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles for seven days after you have gathered the produce of your threshing-floor and your winepress. 14  Be joyful at your Feast—you, your sons and daughters, your menservants and maidservants, and the Levites, the aliens, the fatherless and the widows who live in your towns.
15  For seven days celebrate the Feast to the LORD your God at the place the LORD will choose. For the LORD your God will bless you in all your harvest and in all the work of your hands, and your joy will be complete.
16  Three times a year all your men must appear before the LORD your God at the place he will choose: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Weeks and the Feast of Tabernacles. No man should appear before the LORD empty-handed:
17  Each of you must bring a gift in proportion to the way the LORD your God has blessed you.

It’s a FEAST for Everyone: Even the ALIENS amongst the Jews.
It’s a FEAST of Joyful Celebration.

The Feast of Tabernacles was for ALL NATIONS:

Zec 14:16-19 — Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the LORD Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. 17 If any of the peoples of the earth do not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD Almighty, they will have no rain. 18 If the Egyptian people do not go up and take part, they will have no rain. The LORD will bring on them the plague he inflicts on the nations that do not go up to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. 19 This will be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all the nations that do not go up to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles.

  • PEARS:
    I’ve brought some pears from my garden for the Harvest Celebration today.
    Come and help me take a look children: Let’s cut open a pear and see if there are any seeds inside.
    Let’s count the seeds: How many are there?
    How many pears are on my pear tree each year? Probably a few hundred.
    How many seeds are in each pear?
    How many seeds over the lifetime of a pear tree?
    How many pears are in the SEED?

My friends, when the LORD calls His People, to become HIS People: He expects fruitfulness. He wants us all to be A LIGHT TO THE NATIONS. He wants us all to live in such a way, that many, many, countless others will be influenced to also come and LOVE and Worship the Lord our God.

Oh my friends how this DARK WORLD needs the LIGHT of Jesus Christ: You are that light: Yesterday the news broke here in the UK about another shooting in a school in America. Many people were killed, but countless hundreds are being killed every day with bombs, guns and all kinds of evil ways that we hurt each other. My friends if there has ever been a time that this world needed Jesus; it’s TODAY. Only He can change our hearts so that we will NOT want to be evil anymore.

My what a a wonderful Feast we had on Friday Night: Dancing, Eating wonderful foods from people who’ve come from all over the world: Jerk Chicken, Jollof Rice, Mexican Chicken, Chapatis, etc… Wouldn’t it be wonderful if a REVIVAL came and we were able, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to bring thousands of people to our FEAST OF HARVEST CELEBRATIONS.

When we think about my pears and the number of seeds: We can see that just one seed, when it is planted and grown into a tree can re-produce countless thousands of other pears and more seeds. That is how fruitful the LORD wants you and me to be in bringing others to know about the Lord Jesus Christ: He really is the LORD of the Harvest. (Remember the Parable of the Farmer? How the Lord Jesus explained that He wants to see FRUITFULNESS, hundreds of times the number of the seed that was sown into your heart).

Jesus calls us to Celebrate Harvest: But also be ONE of the ones who’s going to be fruitful in bringing in the harvest of souls.

He wants People: He wants people from ALL NATIONS. Jesus Christ is for EVERYONE.

It is my hope and prayer that you will be able to Celebrate Every Harvest with great JOY before the Lord.

It is my hope and prayer that you will be FRUITFUL every years in bringing souls into God’s Kingdom.

Prayer:

Let us pray to the Lord of the Harvest:

Let us ask Him to send out labourers into His Harvest Field.

Les us ask Him to give us His heart for those who don’t know Him yet. Amen.

I hope you all enjoy an amazing Harvest Sunday today: Let’s go out now into the FEAST and Sing to Lord and bring in the Harvest of Souls.

Don.

P.S. Think also about the FRUIT of the Holy Spirit in your life: This is how fruitful the Lord is going to make you:

Also: Just as the LORD Tabernacled with the Israelites for 40 years in a Tent in the Wilderness: So Jesus Christ came and Tabernacled upon the Earth:  John 1:14 (ANIV) 14  The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us (tabernacled). We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

You are NOW a dwelling place of the Holy Spirit (You are the Tabernacle: God’s Meeting Place)

1 Corinthians 3:16 “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?”
and  1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20  you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your body.”

God has always wanted to TABERNACLE: Be with, Dwell with His Chosen People: If you are born-again of God’s Holy Spirit: Then you ARE the dwelling place of the LORD. He’s in you no matter where you are on the Earth. He’s with you always.

So be the LIGHT to the World that Jesus has called you to be: Be fruitful and increase. That’s God call for you today, that’s always been His desire, command and will for everyone He calls to Himself.

See Also John 15, the great chapter on FRUITFULNESS. (The Vine and the branches).

 

The Single Grain Must Die

Life and Harvest from the death of the Wheat Grain

Daily Spirit & Word 555: The Single Grain Of Wheat Must Die To Produce A Harvest.

“Sir” they said, “We would like to see Jesus”.

Good morning my friends, I must admit I was worried yesterday. As we gathered for worship yesterday, there were so few people in the Congregation at the start of the service, I felt like saying, “The Service is Cancelled, I’m going home”. However, I knew instantly that was not the voice of the Lord in my head. So we began slowly and by the end of the third praise song, there were a few more people, by the time it came to begin preaching there was a decent crowd of people. At the end of the service, by the time of the Lord’s Supper, there were many more. The Crowd had gathered and we were all encouraged by the Lord in one way or another.

That feeling of wanting to go home when it seem bleak or the prospect seems small: When you look at a grain of wheat it’s small, seems insignificant, yet when you put it into the ground, it dies, then slowly a new plant emerges, and it grows-up and produces a seed-head, with hundreds of little seeds inside it. WOWzer! New Life comes when the grain of wheat dies.

If we’re ever going to learn to serve the Lord Jesus, we too must learn to continually die to self. It’s so hard being a living-sacrifice, but sometimes when you do it, all-be-it ever so reluctantly, you’re going to get a glimpse of heaven. Perhaps I should have titled today’s thought; How to Get A Glimpse Of Heaven 🙂

Here’s Jesus teaching on the subject;

John 12:20-36 20 Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the Feast.
21  They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, with a request. “Sir,” they said, “we would like to see Jesus.”
22  Philip went to tell Andrew; Andrew and Philip in turn told Jesus.
23  Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.
24  I tell you the truth, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.
25  The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.
26  Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honour the one who serves me.
27  “Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.
28  Father, glorify your name!” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.”
29  The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.
30  Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine.
31  Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out.
32  But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.”
33  He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die.
34  The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Christ will remain for ever, so how can you say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”
35  Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. The man who walks in the dark does not know where he is going.
36  Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you may become sons of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.

Whoever serves me must follow me:

It’s amazing how we only really get to know what Jesus means after we’ve been following Him for a while. It means applying this “dying-to-self” principle many times before it finally hits home and becomes a reality. The voice from Heaven said, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again”. Jesus was glorified by God the Father many times in His ministry, He must have been thinking that the only time He’d be glorified was when He died, but the Father gives that reassuring voice from Heaven, “I have glorified it already”. Jesus was glorified just by being Jesus. He was glorified the moment He came into the world, He was glorified at His baptism, in His temptation in the wilderness, in His teaching and preaching, in His healings and miracles, in His eating and sleeping, Jesus was full of the glory of the Lord. Yet there’s the wonderful promise from the Father in verse 28 “… and I will glorify it again”. God the Father wants to continually GLORIFY Jesus His Son.

You too will be glorified again, you are being glorified now, by just being a Christian in Jesus. You’ve got the GLORY. How did you get the glory? By doing what Jesus did; “Whoever serves me must follow me” Verse 26. What did Jesus do and where did Jesus go that we must follow?

THE SINGLE GRAIN OF WHEAT.

Jesus was that single grain of wheat that was prepared to die in order that it might produce many seeds. V24.

We don’t traditionally think of John 12:24 as a Parable of Jesus. Normally Jesus parables are longer, but Jesus was a walking-talking-living-parable. Thinking of wheat like this; ‘dying and producing a crop’ is parabolic. Jesus knew that He’d come into this world to die so that others might live forever. He knew that death would not be able to hold him, that he’d rise again from the dead after three days in the grave, but he also knew that he MUST die. He must endure death, torture, punishment and pain, so that others would be able to live.

“NOW MY HEART IS TROUBLED” Verse 27:

This dying-to-self and ‘taking up our cross daily’ is NOT EASY.

Jesus was troubled by the thoughts of what He must do. How he knew about the torture he was about to endure and it quite rightly troubled him. Nobody in their right mind would welcome torture, pain, agony. However if it’s got a purpose and a good reason, then of course we’re prepared to endure it.

We know that people endure pain of operations by doctors and dentists, because after the pain wears off we’re going to feel much better afterwards.

We know that many thousands were prepared to endure pain, discomfort and possible death to serve our Nation in times of war, but nobody in their right mind wants there to be a war.

Jesus knew that His DEATH would bring LIFE and eternity to all who would put their faith and trust in Him. It was the prospect of what would happen afterwards, because He knew the single grain of wheat must die in order that a crop of many thousands would result. It was the ONLY WAY to produce the crop.

PUT YOUR TRUST IN THE LIGHT (Verse 36)

Jesus was indicating to those who were with Him, there’s ONLY ONE WAY to be SAVED, by trusting in the LIGHT.

Today, Jesus has gone through the Cross, He died and rose again from the dead, He’s now ascended into Heaven: He’s ALIVE in His resurrected and glorified body.

However, this “Put your trust in the LIGHT whilst you can” is an opportunity for everyone to receive the gift of life. However, we must not put-it-off, for we don’t know when the end will come. We don’t know when we’re going to depart this life.

On Tuesday I’m conducting a funeral for a man who tripped and fell at home, he crashed into a glass-mirror and died instantly. His poor wife heard the noise of his fall, rushed up the stairs and found his crumpled body. She tried frantically to revive him, but he’d gone.

My friends, God forbid, but we could fall over and die like that, but if we’re not walking in the light of the Lord Jesus Christ, If we have not come to the light, if we have not received the light, then we are going to be tripping into eternity without Jesus as our Lord. We’ll face the Judgement. He’ll judge us on the basis of His Goodness (NOT OURS), His standard of goodness is much higher than ours is. We think we only have to be more good than bad and we’ll be OK at the Judgement. We think, “If I do some good things, I’ll be saved, because a good God will look at all the good things I’ve done in life and I’ll be saved.”

However, it’s the very thing we’re counting on to save us that will condemn us. We are right in thinking that God IS Good, but His goodness is so great that He can’t allow any badness into Heaven. You wouldn’t put a piece of rotten chicken into your fridge beside the good chicken would you? You wouldn’t put a rotten peach into your fruit bowl. You wouldn’t give sour milk to your tea or coffee.

I opened up a packet of bread the other day and was just about to pop it into the toaster when I noticed a green mouldy patch. I looked at the rest of the bread in the packet it was all contaminated and green. The packaging was intact, the label said that t was a few days before the “EAT BY DATE” but it was rotten on the inside.

We might look good to ourselves (the packaging) and think I’m looking good, but it’s God that’s going to judge us. Unless we’ve died to self; Unless our grain of wheat has died, then we’re still rotting on the inside because we’re contaminated with sin. Unless we die to self and come to the light of the Lord Jesus Christ, then we’re going to die in our sin and face His Judgement.

God cannot and will not allow anything contaminated with sin into His Holy Heaven. No amount of good deeds will remove your sin from your record. Once committed, sin stains your soul until it is washed away, but doing good doesn’t wash sin away.

In order to get into Heaven, the grain of wheat must die.

Jesus died so that we could live forever. He died in our place; now if we want to go to Heaven, we too must die in order that we can live forever. However our death is different; we simply need to die to self. We need to come and trust in Jesus death so that we can live forever, but to do that, we must die to self. We’ve got to let go of our life in order to gain eternal life.

YBH: Yes, but how?

To die to self: We must STOP trusting in our own goodness: Recognise that we’re rotten and contaminated with sin on the inside. For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. We’ve all broken God’s commandments, when we do we become contaminated with sin. We may still be in-date, alive for a while, but we’re walking and living contaminated.

First: Believe:

That Jesus is the GRAIN of Wheat that Died For YOU.

He died upon the cross for the sins of all. Jesus knew that’s why He had come;

John 12:27  “Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.” Simply believe that Jesus came to that hour on the Cross for your sin.

1 Timothy 1:15 “Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners …”

Full Acceptance: Means we can fully accept and trust that Jesus came to die for our sins.

Secondly: Repent:

Turn away from your sin and trust Jesus: Stop trusting in your own goodness to save you (check the bread above). You’re going to be sadly disappointed on Judgement day if you continue to trust yourself. Repent and Trust the Saviour.

Thirdly: Receive:

Walk in the Light. Receive Jesus Christ as your LORD and you’ll begin walking in the light. Walking in Jesus. Remember Jesus is the “The Light Of The World” John 1.

Fourthly: SERVE: (DIE-to-Self):

Die to self. “Take up your cross daily”

Living a life of service means we must be prepared every day to follow Jesus example, He died in order that many would live. The single grain of wheat must die to bring life to countless thousands of others. We too must be prepared to die to self in order that we can live forever.

John 12:36  “Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you may become sons of light.”

A son of light: A daughter of light: Is a person who’s trusted in the LIGHT.

NOW: After trusting we can do our good deeds, not to be saved, but because we’re ALIVE: We’ve died to self and we’re LIVING for God.

John 12:26  “Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honour the one who serves me.”

Believe, Repent, Receive, Serve and be HONOURED by the Father.

Have an AWESOME week walking in the Light of the Lord, taking up your own cross every day for Jesus.

Don.

 

Divine Expectations

 

Daily Spirit & Word, 458: Divine Expectations.

Are You Eating For; One or Two or for Thousands?

Divine Expectation: Divine Pregnancy: Unusual Cravings: Expectant for one or two or thousands.

 

Seven Benefits of Bible Memorisation. Benefit #4 Divine Expectations.

 

Good moring everyone, did you see that AWESOME sunrise? I watched it going from darkness to light and it was pink long before the sun lit up the sky with glorious colours. I had an expectation that it would be brilliant long before the sun popped up.

You know when you’re semi-conscious and a thought comes into your mind, then you think to yourself, “This is from the Lord, I must write that down before I forget it?” Well, I had such a thought this morning and it was this; “When a lady is pregnant, sometimes we’ll say, “She’s eating for two you know””… Then I knew God had given me a word for today; “When a Christian is pregnant with expectation that they’ll win thousands for Jesus, they’ll devour God’s Word like a pregnant woman who’s eating for thousands of babies.” Divine Expectations.

 John 4:35 (NIV) “Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.”

Mark 4:20 “Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—thirty, sixty or even a hundred times what was sown.”

“She’s so Large because She’s Pregnant with twins”. Recently we had a lovely lady in our Fellowship who gave birth to twins and they are so gorgeous. My friends, when you win someone to Christ, when you’ve been involved in giving birth to a new-born-babe in Christ, you are overjoyed right? Now imagine if you got pregnant with the expectation that you are going to win thousands to the Lord Jesus Christ? How much would you need to be eating whilst pregnant with that?

Remember Jesus teaching about the fields being white unto harvest and the labourer’s being few? Well they are RIPE unto HARVEST, but are we getting ready to go into the labour ward? Are we ready to get out into the harvest field to deliver the babies that we’ve been eating for?  Divine Expectation: Expecting Thousands or are you just eating for one or two or are you getting into God’s Word and storing it within to win thousands to Christ?

Whatever burden Christ has put upon your heart; remember this truth and remember it well: “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” With Christ’s burdens for service and doing His will, it will not be an overwhelming burden, but it will be easy, it will be a joy, it will be natural, Supernaturally Natural, because we’ve been given a new nature in Christ. You will not be overwhelmed by Christ’s burdens: If it’s winning the lost, giving to the poor, leading in worship, teaching, preaching, working in the background, helping brothers and sisters practically, showing love to strangers, pastoral care; Whatever the Burden from Christ it’s going to be easy, but we’ll need to be equipped for the task.

If a Field Gunner (Field Gun Crew RN) is going into training, they’ll begin to eat the right food to bulk up and prepare for the task in hand. So too with those who are getting ready to serve Jesus Christ, we’ll bulk up with Divine Food. We’re getting ready to deliver the goods.

Look How Jesus Was Burdened (To accomplish the Father’s will).

John 4:34-38 (NIV)  “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work. 35  Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. 36  Even now the reaper draws his wages, even now he harvests the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together. 37  Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. 38  I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labour.”

Jesus Food: “To do the will of Him who sent me”. The Christian’s Food: The Bread of Life

John 6:33-35 “For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” 34  “Sir,” they said, “from now on give us this bread.” 35  Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”

Jeremiah 15:16 “When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O LORD God Almighty.”

Whatever Christ is calling you to do today, whatever burden he’s placed upon your heart, you are going to need Supernatural Energy: That comes from the Holy Spirit. Also, you are going to need to be feasting upon a Divine Diet: Eating and Feasting upon God’s Word like we’re eating for a thousand babies, we’ll want to see many new-born-babes in Christ.

For Evangelists: who engage in One-to-One witnessing and sometimes preaching to thousands;  the only way to win them is to KNOW God’s Word: The Spirit will bring it to mind during conversations, but we’ll need to do the eating and feeding my friends. We work together with God’s Spirit, we don’t depend upon human resources, but we must make every effort to get to know God’s REVELATION that he’s already given, before we’ll get any new revelations whilst out witnessing for Him.

I’m sure it’s the same in many other fields of Christian Service (Burdens) too: Pastoral Counselling: I know of one Pastor who get’s a Word of Knowledge, but it’s always backed up by a Scripture the Lord brings to his remembrance.

There are people who’re involved in Foodbanks here in the UK, one Christian I know, talks with clients who come for food, but she’ll often talk to them about the Lord Jesus and try and lead them to Him. I got a word from the Lord one day at the Foodbank: “We can get by on earthly food, but we’ll thrive with Divine food. It’s NOT enough just to give them food for emergencies, but we need to be feeding them with Divine food too.”

 Unusual Cravings:

When a woman is pregnant, she’ll often get unusual cravings for certain foods; gherkins, pickles, cakes, crisps, cookies etc… When we’re pregnant with Jesus Divine Burdens; we’ll get different cravings for God’s Word. We’ll be zealous, we’ll have a craving for certain types of Divine food;

  • Prophets: we’ll get prophetic insight in to His Word,
  • Pastors: we’ll get pastoral guidance if we’re a pastor from God’s Word,
  • Evangelists: we’ll get scriptures to that will hit home to seek and to save the lost.
  • Apostles: we’ll get practical insight if we’ve got an Apostolic calling or Administrative burden from Jesus.
  • Teachers: We’ll get hungry for being able to communicate God’s Word in winning ways that will enlighten the body of Christ.

My friends, today you can see that I’ve been given a word from God today, “Divine Expectations” I’ve just been writing as the Lord has brought this idea to life, it’s not organised or structured, I’ve been pouring it all out this morning. Praise the Lord for His inspiration.

When we’re getting into God’s Word and getting God’s Word into our memory banks, He’ll bring it to life is so many wonderful ways. Whatever burden the Lord has placed upon your heart, for service in His Kingdom, it’s not going to be too heavy or hard, he’ll equip you for whatever He’s called you for. However, I encourage you to be eating His Divine Diet for Kingdom Service today. Feed in such a way that His revealed will and word will never leave you. Get into Bible Memorisation.

If you’ve been given a Divine Burden (Pregnancy), are you eating for one, two or for thousands? Can I encourage you with all my heart today, no matter what Burden the Lord has put upon your heart, to be eating for THOUSANDS.

John 4:35 (NIV) “Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.”

Mark 4:20 “Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—thirty, sixty or even a hundred times what was sown.”

For me, I’m an Evangelists at heart: I know that the fields truly are RIPE unto harvest and the labourers (those in labour) are few, ask the Lord of the Harvest to send out labourers, those who are pregnant with expectation that they are going to deliver babes-in-Christ. “I’m ASKING You today Lord” Amen.

Are you eating for one, for two or for thousands? Let’s be pregnant with expectation in the Lord today. Amen!

Have a great weekend my friends.

Don.

Mark 4:1-20

1  Again Jesus began to teach by the lake. The crowd that gathered round him was so large that he got into a boat and sat in it out on the lake, while all the people were along the shore at the water’s edge.

2  He taught them many things by parables, and in his teaching said:

3  “Listen! A farmer went out to sow his seed.

4  As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up.

5  Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow.

6  But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root.

7  Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants, so that they did not bear grain.

8  Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up, grew and produced a crop, multiplying thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times.”

9  Then Jesus said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

10  When he was alone, the Twelve and the others around him asked him about the parables.

11  He told them, “The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables

12  so that, ” ‘they may be ever seeing but never perceiving, and ever hearing but never understanding; otherwise they might turn and be forgiven!’ ”

13  Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t you understand this parable? How then will you understand any parable?

14  The farmer sows the word.

15  Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them.

16  Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy.

17  But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.

18  Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word;

19  but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful.

20  Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—thirty, sixty or even a hundred times what was sown.”

Seven Benefits of Bible Memorisation: Benefit #4: Divine Expectations.

Divine Expectations.