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.

 

 

No Prayer – No Power.

Plug into the power of prayer

Daily Spirit & Word, 480: No Prayer – No Power.

 Plug into the POWER of PRAYER.

Good morning my friends, we’ve just had a wonderful few days over the Easter Bank Holiday Weekend, with family, friends and awesome fellowship. Easter Sunday was an exciting celebration of the Power of the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus. There are times in the life of every believer when we feel low, when we don’t feel close to the Lord and when things seem to get hard both spiritually and emotionally. Quite often that will happen after a wonderful time of close connection with Jesus and an encounter with the Holy Spirit. When that happens to me I get back to spending longer times in prayer with the Lord, and more often than not I begin to wonder, “Lord, what are you saying to me through this?” The Lord is so gentle and kind, because He’ll lead me back into His ways and He’ll gently show me or remind me what I should have been doing or ought not to have done.

You all know one of my mottoes in life is: No Read – No Feed… If I don’t read God’s Word then I’m not going to be fed Spiritually.

 It’s the same with Prayer: No Prayer – No Power. When we are prayerless, then we’re going to powerless as followers of Jesus. Think of prayer as a way to charge you up spiritually as one would your mobile phone. We’re always charging our phones to ensure they have enough power to see us through the day, but do we spend quality time charging in prayer with the Lord Jesus?

No Prayer – No Power

Little Prayer = Little Power.

Quality Prayer = Explosive POWER.

 My Spiritually Drained Life:

 First; No Read – No Feed: Sometimes it’s a lack of real engagement with the Word of God; I’ll be reading it, but then at the end of a passage or even a whole chapter, I’m left wondering what I’ve just read. Then I realise, I’ve been reading without thinking, reading without paying attention to what I’m reading, so the Lord guides me to go back and read it again. I’ve done that so many times, when I’ve woken up tired from a late night or been up during the night and just begin reading God’s Word automatically or out of routine. Then BAM! It hits me, I’ve been reading God’s Word as if it’s a Newspaper or an Advert: skim reading and not dwelling upon it or reading it prayerfully. That’s quickly followed by a confession and repentance and return to devotional reading, seeking the Lord for His light from His Word. You know my friends, I can confess to you right now, that these are some of the most powerful and profitable times in God’s Word. You see God didn’t call us to be like robots or to do things out of duty or routine, but always seeking to engage and talk with one another. That’s what should be happening when I’m reading His Word, because it’s His living Word and He wants to speak to me through His revelations and give me fresh revelations every single day.

Secondly: No Prayer – No Power. Then I’ll sometimes get convicted about my prayer life or more specifically my lack of engagement or communication with my Lord. You see Jesus wants us to know that when we pray, he’s right there with us, He’s not some distant deity that we have to emplore to be touched by our works our devotions or our dedications. No my friends, Jesus is right there and wants us to know it, the moment we turn to Him in prayer, His desire is to communicate and be with us. How awesome is that? Jesus is not impressed by how we posture ourselves or about how holy a place we’ve found to pray, what He’s impressed with is a heart that desires to know Him and be with Him and spend time in His company, a heart that desires to do His will, to live in accordance with His commands, for Jesus knows that when He gets a heart of a human being in the morning like that, that we are truly loving Him for who He is and not just what He can do for us.

When we come to Jesus in prayer and come to His Word with our focus and attention and heart right, then we’re going to get the power encounters that all the ancient saints of old and down through history have experienced with the Lord. Like Moses, Joshua, David, Elijah, Elisha, Daniel, we’ll get revelation and power. They all plugged in and got the power. When we Read God’s Word and Spend Quality Time in Prayer, then we’re going to be fed and powered up for following Jesus today.

God’s Word, for reading and meditation today:
Luke 18:1-8
1  Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.
2  He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men.
3  And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’
4  “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care about men,
5  yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!’ ”
6  And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says.
7  And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?
8  I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”

It’s amazing what people down through the ages have called this parable; “The Parable of the Persistent Widow” “The Widow that never gives us”. But it could also be called “The Parable of God’s Desire for Justice”. It just depends upon our focus; are we thinking about earthly things or heavenly things. Where your treasure is there your heart will be also. If our heart’s desire is to be God’s person, then we’ll be concerned with Heavenly things. God’s desire is that people always get justice and Christians should always be on the side of fairness, equality, justice, mercy. Giving aid and assistance to the poor and those who can’t care for themselves. Once we know the Lord and His deeper desires then we’ll also act in accordance with God’s character as well. However, just as the widow was persistent until she got the unjust judge to listen, we’ll also continue in prayer and never give up until we see that justice is being done. We’ll pray and act and then we’ll see the POWER of Heaven released.

We’re not to just to pray, God’s much more concerned about How we live in this world and about how we’re being obedient to what He’s already revealed. When we come to God in the morning and we’re ready to do His will in the world that day, don’t you believe that He’s ready to listen to your petitions? Oh yes my friends, David and Abraham were called the friends of God, because their hearts were filled with a desire to trust Him alone. Abraham believed the Lord and it was credited to him as righteousness. David was a man after the Lord’s own heart. They both desired to do His will.

No Read – No Feed.

No Prayer – No Power.

Go on my friends, get close to Jesus right now: Pray and Feed upon His Word. You’ll get Power to sustain you throughout your day. You’ll be fed and nurtured by God’s Word to equip you for the fight of the faith. It’s your only weapon against the enemy.

No Prayer – No Power.

Little Prayer = Little Power.

Quality Prayer = Explosive POWER.

Prayer: Oh Lord, let me come to You and to Your Word ready to listen, to pay attention to what you’ve got to say to me every single day. Let me have a heart that’s ready and willing to obey what You are telling me. Show me Lord the areas of my life, that I’m slipping up in: is my prayer life right Lord? is my Bible reading right Lord? is my heart attitude towards others right Lord? I’m desiring to live my life Your way Lord. I want your power in me, I want to know your Word. Help me to be like David and Abraham, I want to be called a friend of God and friend of Jesus. I know that you are my friend Lord, but help me to live every moment knowing my best friend is with me wherever I go. Amen.

You know my friends, when you pray like that God’s going to show you things in His Word and He’ll answer your prayers quickly. So don’t ever think of quitting or giving up, but be like that widow, be persistent in prayer and the Lord who loves Justice, Mercy, Patience, Kindness, Goodness and Gentleness will answer your prayers quickly. Amen!

Don.

No Read – No Feed.

No Prayer – No Power.

 

Grandmother and Mother’s Sincere Faith

Grandmother and Mother’s Sincere Faith.

 

The Church Today NEEDS faithful, Praying, Grandmothers, Mums, Dads and Granddads.
The Church Today NEEDS faithful, Praying, Grandmothers, Mums, Dads and Granddads.

Daily Spirit & Word, 445: Grandmother and Mother’s Sincere Faith.

The Church today needs more faithful Grandmothers and Mothers, who’ll be able to ignite the faith of Jesus Christ in their children and grandchildren.

Good morning my friends, I was really encouraged this morning reading through 2 Timothy, by Paul’s devotion to praying for him and the way that Paul was encouraging Timothy in so many ways. The things that jumped out at me were having people in our lives who are inspirations to keep us going, examples that we can follow and emulate and encouragements to know that because God was active in their lives, He’ll also be with us on the journey too.

2 Timothy 1:3-7

“I thank God, whom I serve, as my forefathers did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers. Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.”

 Faithful In Prayer:

When children observe a Mother praying at home regularly. When she has a sincere faith it will leave a life-long impression upon her children and even her grandchildren.

 Firstly notice Paul’s own Faithfulness in Prayer:

“I thank God, who I serve, as my forefathers did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers.”
Paul’s remembering back to his faithful praying ancestors: It’s good for us as Christians to have heroes of the faith, men and women of prayer who’ve served the Lord Jesus Christ faithfully in all kinds of circumstances. When I was a young Christian some old saint gave me a book and said, “Read this, pray about it and ask God to help you to be a Christian like some of these were”. I took that book with me to sea and read it upon my bunk on the Submarine hundreds of feet below the surface of the icy cold waters of the North Atlantic. I was, as far as I knew, the only Christian aboard. It soon became known that I was using a room on the Boat for prayers, for months no one joined me. Then a young man, Shawn Frow, gave his life to the Lord and we began to meet almost every day; to pray, read the Bible and sing and praise the Lord. Me upon my guitar and he with faltering voice because he’d never sang hymns of praise in his life before. I shared the contents of the book with Sean and together we marvelled at the old saints. We were encouraged aboard a boat full of unrepentant sinners to be faithful to the Lord in all things and to be His witnesses. People began to be interested and requested the Bibles that took up half my bunk. I’d intended to give them away to folks, but it didn’t’ begin happening until young Shawn became a believer and we prayed together about it.

 

When you think about FAITHFUL Christians and how they served the Lord and what the Lord did through their lives, you too will be encouraged in your own situations, you’ll be enthused to walk as Jesus did, in faith and power of the Holy Spirit. So I would encourage you to get to know the Saints of the past as Paul did, his “faithful praying ancestor”s. Even if you don’t have any in your own immediate family who love the Lord, then you have them in abundance in the Lord’s Family of believers. Read, study and meditate upon the lives of people like: George Muller, Isobel Khun, Billy Bray, David Brainerd, Robert Annan, David Wilkerson and Jackie Pullinger. Faithful saints who gave up the world to follow Jesus and it’ll blow-your-socks-off what Jesus did in and through their lives; but what was it that made them so great, such heroes of the faith? PRAYER and BEING WITH JESUS REGULARLY.

 

Heroes of the Fath: Susanna Wesley:

Here’s a little account of Susanna Wesley (The Mother of John and Charles Wesley, the Great Methodist Preachers and Hymn Writers).
“Since there were no afternoon church services, Susanna began an evening family gathering where they sang psalms, prayed and Susanna read a short sermon from her husband’s library. It began with the family and the servants but soon word spread and others neighbors appeared, and soon there were too many for the parsonage. Susanna had written her husband of what she was doing, but then in his own letter when he perhaps saw the services as competition, Mr. Inman complained to Samuel. His claim to Samuel was that such irregular services could cause criticism or even scandal for the church. For while women have been ordained in many Methodist churches for more than 50 years at that time the idea of a woman having any part in a worship service – even in her own home – was unheard of. Samuel suggested to Susanna that she have someone else read the sermons, but still Mr. Inman complained and finally Samuel told Susanna to discontinue the meetings. However, she declined as she described how the meetings were a genuine and effective ministry to those who attended and that Mr. Inman was about the only one who‘d objected. The services continued.” Taken from the site History’s Women Read more about Susanna by clicking the link.

 

NEXT Timothy is encouraged to do the same thing too: To remember the faithfulness of his own Grandmother and Mother. In an ideal world there would be generations of faithful relatives who loved the Lord Jesus, but I know that most people today, who come to faith, have very few of the Lord’s anointed in our families. My own mother became a Christian on her death-bed, my father became a Christian whilst in a coma; both of whom had been witnessed to by my brother Paul and I for years. We’d shared the Gospel, read the Bible, prayed for them, but they stubbornly refused to trust in Jesus, until they were in a desperate situation.

 

However, Timothy had that witness. I’ve found as I’ve studied Timothy that Paul must have regarded him as a bit timid a bit weak in his faith and frightened to carry out his commission. His letters to Timothy are so full of encouragement to be faithful, to keep going, to be prepared to suffer for the Gospel.

 

Sometimes, having faithful relatives and strong Christians in our family is NO guarantee that the faith they have will be shared by every member of the family. We meet people out on the streets of London every week who’ll say, “My grandmother was a woman of prayer”. As if that faithful old saint was enough, they didn’t need to do it themselves, because she did it for the whole family. I aways respond with “What about you?” Paul said, “I’m persuaded is in you”. He needed to be persuaded, to be convinced, to have it certified that Timothy really did have that same faith as his grandmother and mother. But he’d become convinced of it. Notice too that Paul was praying for Him day and night. I pray for my friends and some of you I pray for every single day, but I don’t pray for you DAY & NIGHT like Paul did for Timothy. He must have thought that Timothy needed his prayers, that something was lacking in his walk with Jesus.

 

There’s NO Second-Hand Faith in God’s Family.
I’ve found that when there’s been a very strong person of faith in a family, the rest of the family are not very fire-filled, they are like the Laodican Church in the book of Revelation; Luke Warm Believers. They don’t have the same kind of compulsion, zeal, commitment and drive to serve the Lord wholeheartedly. I’m not sure why that is, but it seems that a totally surrendered life and a faithful life to members of ones own family is a hindrance to those who live with them and know them personally. It’s like they depend upon the faith of the faith-filled rather than cultivate their own faith. I’ve known many Preachers children, great preachers and wonderful men and women of God, who’s own children’s faith is almost non-existent. I know they must be praying for them, witnessing to them and sharing Jesus with them constantly. But we must always bear in mind: “Remember there are no second-hand Christians in God’s Family.” We must all come to Saviour for ourselves. We are not Christians because our Grandmother or Mother was a believer. Perhaps Paul was wondering if Timothy really had been born-again of the Holy Spirit, he’d laid hands upon him to receive the gift, but wasn’t convinced it was a genuine conversion, because he’d not seen the evidence of it, but now he’s writing and he’s been persuaded and convinced (we don’t know how).

 

We do need faithful Mothers, Grandmothers, Brothers, Fathers, Sisters of the faith today; who’ll encourage family members, who’ll pray for their children and grandchildren, but who’ll also lead them to the Lord so that the children will be set on fire with love for Jesus too. 

 

My four year old granddaughter Leila is a natural evangelist. She lives in South London, in Thornton Heath, which is an area full of Muslims. She can identify a Muslim and said to me the other day, “That lady is a Muslim grandpa, but we’re Christians”. She was out shopping with her mother in Tesco and at the check-out asked the Teller “Are you a Muslim? I’m a Christian, I love Jesus. You should love Jesus too”… She’s only FOUR and is a bold as a lion. Her mother, my daughter, apologised for her and said to her, “You don’t ask people that!”. There’s NO second-hand faith in the family of God. Each and every individual needs to come on their own to Jesus Christ, in faith, in repentance and to take Him as their own Master, Lord and King.
 
I hope and pray that Timothy was faithful and continued in the faith, we just don’t know. Paul wanted him to “fan into flames” that gift of the Spirit. My friends, I want every Christian to be FULL OF FIRE OF THE LORD JESUS, AND FULL OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

 

READ REVELATIONS:

No Second-Hand Faith in the Family of God.

Revelation 3:14-22 

14 “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. 15  I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16  So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17  You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realise that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. 18  I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so that you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so that you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so that you can see. 19  Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. 20  Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. 21  To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”

 

As Paul said, “God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.”

 

My friends, the weekend is coming, keep going with Jesus, gather with the saints on Sunday, worship Him, Love Him, Serve Him. He’s with you, in you and will encourage you to keep going in the strength that He provides. Mothers, keep praying for your children, but lead them to the Saviour for themselves. Grandmothers, pray for your grand-kids that they’ll get the FIRE for themselves. The Church today desperately needs faithful, fire-filled Grandmothers and mums, dads and granddads.
 
Don.
 

Can also be read at St Luke’s Church Facebook Page.

 

 

The Church Today Needs The Sincere Faith and Prayers of Grandmothers and Mothers. Dads and Granddads.