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Friday, January 16, 2009

In Prayer

Pray without ceasing.- 1 Thessalonians 5:17

We must become and stay rooted in prayer. Why? Prayer is our direct connection with God. It is our main line of communicating with Him on a spiritual level in accordance to His Word. This economy needs prayer as well as the people who are suffering within it. Our newly-elected president is in need of prayer just as many of us stand in the need of it. In this information age, it still holds true that we need prayer for a prayer-hearing God. We may need it now more than ever.

Pray without ceasing are the words of inspiration and instruction penned by Paul to this small, struggling church dear to his heart. They are easy to keep in mind because they are short, straightforward, and succinct. The inspiration is to pray without ending or stopping, never losing your connection and communication with God for an instant. The instruction is to pray without ever stopping, to pray relentlessly. It is by such a prayer life that we learn how to make many strides in life while on our knees.

Keep me in your prayers as I continue to share inspirational messages with the congregation of the Bayview Baptist Church every Wednesday this month for WNL.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Make Disciples

The final words of the risen Jesus in Matthew 28:19-20 have been used to launch worldwide missionary journeys and to reach out to local communities with the Word of God alike. Much of this evangelistic outreach has more to do with the red letters of our bibles that tell us to Go rather than the full context of what the Lord shared at that appointed, hillside meeting place after His resurrection. In essence, what the Lord was saying was for His own disciples to make disciples of the vast world.

I have been quoted many times as saying: "Meeting people where they are does not mean leaving them there." I truly believe that such a statement rings true of the charity and evangelism, even discipleship, that should occur when people encounter us as Christians. No one should be left the same after meeting with one of us. Something should at least be stirred up within them to cause them to ask more questions about Christ or even salvation.

The command in brief summary is to: "Go and make disciples." Get out there, meet people and help bring about change within them. Go and make a difference in someone's life today and everyday. As we go out and evangelize our local communities and send out missionaries, let us not forget to build up people in what the Lord has taught us along the way.

Let us go and make disciples!!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Choose Your Battles

But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men, you will only find yourselves fighting against God.- Acts 5:39

When it comes to walking the walk as Christians, we can be called on how we "walk" with the Lord and use His name to address heretics. Gamaliel shared some simple words of advice for those self-righteous Jews who chose to silence the unruly and rebellious "riff-raff" who started the Way as followers of Jesus Christ. His words resonate with sincere clarity, even today. As he warned these men of their pending actions, he shared that they could possibly find themselves fighting against God.

Choose your battles carefully just as this Pharisee advised. Understand that you will have to decide where to place your energies as you go through 2009. There will be physical battles. Can you lose that weight? Will give in on that diet? Can you get back in shape? There will be family battles. Will the children honor and obey their parents? Can the marriage survive infidelity and loss of trust? There will be spiritual battles. Can I stay in prayer? Have I sought God's guidance first? Is this God's will or my desire? Where do I stand with the Lord today?

Choose your battles prayerfully. From the simple to the surreal, be careful to choose your battles in 2009. Many things will come your way in this year. What will you do? Decide today to not find yourself fighting God. Stand on what you believe, and stand firm on that belief.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Living in Love

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.-John 13:34 (NKJV)

Jesus commands us, just like His disciples, to love one another. We are called to live in love with one another. Both our words and deeds are to be rooted and saturated in love. This is the outward expression of all that God has done for us, shared with each other in the very love that he demonstrated before the world in the flesh.

In fact, Jesus shared: "By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another" (v. 35). By His own example and words, we discover that our lives should serve as living examples to others of the unity of Christians through the love of Christ.

Let us live in love and continue to share the love of Christ with each other in unity. As we do so, we fulfill Christ's command and show others that we are truly His disciples.
Amen Me!