Inside Out

Matt 23:25 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.
I saw a preacher who was holding a cup in his hand ask a woman who had volunteered to vigorously shake his hand while he held the cup. Water spilled out over the rim and onto the floor. Then he asked her “Why did the water spill out of the cup when you shook my hand?” She replied with the obvious “Because that was what was in it.” “Exactly!” He said. His point was this: when we experience a shaking what comes out of us is that which is in us…Wow! I don’t know about anyone else but I am ashamed by what too often comes out when I’m shook.

I want to be so changed by Jesus and God’s word that I’ll be an empty cup where nothing will come out when shook. Because God has washed it clean. He is the source to wash away all my filth and empty the cup of my life making it new.
Holy Father,

Do your work in me! Change me and make me clean. Holy Spirit have your perfect work in me until it is finished.

Amen

What do you value

Pslm 139:17

How precious to me are your thoughts oh God! How vast is the sum of them.

Today we value so much stuff that really has no effect upon our lives. Things like sport, possessions, celebrities. Sure they may provide some short term pleasure or diversion, but do they really change us, or somehow make us better? No. Jesus said where your treasure is there your heart will be. In this verse we see that the thoughts of God are precious and vast. So I wonder what would happen in each Christians life if we valued above all else the thoughts of God? what kind of people would we then be? 

Far different than we are I am sure.

I will make the thoughts of God precious and search the vastness of them

Holy Father

Help me to know your thoughts, and search the vastness of them and be changed.

Restrained 

Scripture 

1 Samuel 25:26 Now then, my lord, as the Lord lives, and as your soul lives, because the Lord has restrained you from bloodguilt and from saving with your own hand, now then let your enemies and those who seek to do evil to my lord be as Nabal.
Observation 

We are so prone to make rash decisions when our ego has been bruised, or when we feel someone has failed to treat us the way we treated them. Yet if we will listen and pay attention instead of allowing our anger to make us deaf. God will keep us from sinning. To do this He may use His word, or another person to speak to us and keep and keep us from acting, or behaving in a rash manor. Because the truth is…only God can save. Only He can deliver and restore us. Restoring our reputation, emotions, and our lives. We need to quit reacting first when we’ve been wronged or feel we’ve been. God wants to deliver us from this, and save us from ourselves if we will just listen.

Application

I will allow God to speak to me and slow me down when my emotions are running high, and I am about to act in a manor that will destroy what He wants to do through me.

Prayer
Holy Father 

Keep me in check and change me. Touch my life and help me see that you are my salvation and deliverer.
Amen.

Done

Here is my devotion for this Saturday before Easter. 
1 Sam 17:47 “and that all this assembly may know that the Lord saves not with the sword and spear. For the battle is the Lords, and he will give you into our hands.”
When the voice of sin, and the shout of the darkness around us has the people of God hiding and retreating and all seems lost. We need to remember that it was the greater Son of David that has gone out before us and won our victory. He defeated them all sin, death, and hell when he slung the stone out of His way and walked out of the tomb. So do not cower when the enemy, and sinful world taunt and boast. Laugh at them and declare…Jesus said it is finished! 

Because it IS!
I will go out and declare the battle is won by walking in the finished work of Jesus Chirst!

Father…no Daddy,

I love you. I praise you for all and what you’ve done in me and for me. You amaze me, You blow me away. Your love can not be measured it can only be experienced
Amen

Thanksgiving

What God showed me this morning. (I put an explanation of my devotional method at the end)

S: Psalm 50:23 The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God.
O: Sometimes thanksgiving is truly a sacrifice. When we find ourselves in deep grief, and sorrow, or we are under intense emotional distress. It can feel almost impossible to find a way or reason to offer thanksgiving. Yet, if it is nothing more than just being thankful for salvation we glorify God; and that’s the start of the road to healing.
A: Even when it’s hard I will find a a way to offer up thanksgiving as my sacrifice. Because I want to glorify God.
P: Holy Father, today I offer up my thanksgiving to You. For I am thanking you for what You have done for me in Jesus my Lord, and all you have brought me through and given me.

Amen
I use a devotional method that uses the acronym S.O.A.P. Scripture, Obsrevation, Application, Prayer. Some may be familiar with it, if not let me briefly explain how it works. You have a Bible in a year reading plan and you read the chapters for the day while asking God to speak to you through what you read. Then when a verse jumps out at you write it down that’s the S. Then the O is what did you observe about that verse, or what is it saying to you. The A is how will I live differently because of what I saw in the Observation. And the P is pray that application or observation into your life. Give it a try God might just work in you through it.

Where’s your mind?

Col. 3:1 Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, Keep seeking the things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.

I’ve heard it said that Christians can be so heavenly minded that they are of no earthly good, but today it seems that they can be so earthly minded they are of no heavenly good.

Jesus said “Seek first the Kingdom” and “to store up your treasures where neither moth, rust nor thieves can break in and steal.” Paul tells us in this verse to seek the things above where Christ is seated.

What all this means for us then is that we should as Christians become so Heavenly minded that we effect the earthly for His kingdom. We are to be in the world but not of it.

Set your mind upon Him and make a difference here!

 

The opposite

   I recently preached a message on Daniel 2 and during my preperation I was reminded in Ironsides commentary that the image shown to Nebuchadnezzar was top heavy and  standing upon an unstable foundation since iron and clay do not mix. Yet I felt that there was something else there.

While meditating upon this section of Daniel (and sitting in the woods in 25 degrees) I had one of those moments where I thought man this has to be the Holy Spirit because I’m not this smart! 

Today in a culture that is embracing secular humanism at a far greater rate than ever before we are constantly bombarded through education, Media, and the Internet in subtle and non subtle ways that humankind is progressing and getting better all the time.

In fact recently one of the democrats running for president stated a traditional humanist belief that “deep seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases need to be changed.” ( If you don’t believe me Google it). A statement like that is born out of a deeply held humanistic belief that man is getting better and all we need to do is get rid of the archaic ways of thinking brought about by ancient and out dated religious views.

However the image in Daniel 2 that God gave to Nebuchadnezzar reveals God’s view of “Humankinds progress”. Consider it’s make up head of gold (Babylon) chest of silver (Medo-Persia), waist of bronze (Greece), legs of iron (Rome), Feet of Iron and clay (the last empire or the one world government of the antichrist) the elements that make up the image degrade from head to foot. 

Here’s what I realized…If man is progressing to a greater future where there will be no more war, prejudice, or poverty as we are being told then why does God reveal to a pagan king the opposite to be true?

If what the world says is true then the image should go from an iron and clay head to gold feet!

It doesn’t which can only mean that the closer we get to the soon return of the Lord Jesus Christ the worse humankind and it’s governments will be. This image is God’s message against the claims of secular humanism and all others who claim that mankind can improve themselves by their own efforts.

The fact is it shows us that what will happen is that this way of thinking, and all that man has built will one day be destroyed until nothing remains except the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. 

It’s time to wake up Christian and forsake all of the humanistic and worldly philosophies and embrace the Lord of all who has and will come!