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Archive for June, 2005

Just a Closer Walk With Thee


But as for me, how good it is to be near God!
I have made the Sovereign LORD my shelter,
and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things you do.

Psalm 73:28

These are tough times to be a follower of Christ. There was a time when sin was done behind closed doors. Now it is out in the open and people are encouraged to display it proudly. They are called courageous and patted on the back. Sin is in your face. You can’t watch television anymore without your beliefs being challenged. The music you hear played by youth today incites rebellion. The lyrics are filled with filth. They call it artistic freedom. One of them sings about the what he feels are the joys of rapping his own mother and killing his wife. Homosexuals shove their agenda in your face. There is no more shame in today’s society. When we as Christians try to speak out we are shouted down and told we are bigots. Wrong has become right and righteousness has become wrong.

Summer seems to be the time that it is more open. Every year people seem to be wearing less and less clothing. As a male who used to be addicted to pornography, it can be quite difficult. Men are stimulated through the visual senses. The way a women dresses or their lack of dress can greatly affect him and cause him to stumble. Tight jeans or pants, bare mid-drifts, or low cut blouses, a lot of these clothes don’t leave much to the imagination. Going to the corner store can sometimes be a nightmare for me. Don’t get me wrong, men can dress just as provocatively so that it affects a woman.

Everyday I realize more and more that our eyes have to be on Jesus continuously. Oh how we need Him now more than ever. As this world decays and falls into debauchery, He is the only stability we can find. We need to cry out daily for a closer walk with Him. Oh Lord, we long to love You more! Lord help us to fix our eyes upon You, the Author and Finisher of our faith. We long to be a light to this world! Please shine Lord through us brighter than ever! The lyrics to one of my favourite hymns says it best; "I am weak but thou art strong, Jesus keep from all wrong. I’ll be satisfied as long as I walk, let me walk close to thee. Just a closer walk with Thee, grant it Jesus is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee. Let it be dear Lord, let it be. When My feeble life is over, time for me will be no more. Guide me gently, safely over, to Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore. Just a closer walk with Thee, grant it Jesus is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee. Let it be dear Lord, let it be. Amen.

 

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

 

I encourage you to join Awesome MSN Spaces and let your faith be shown!

 

How Awesome is Our God!


Psalm 19:1 says; “The heavens declare the Glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork.” And Psalm 8:3-4 says; “When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have ordained, What is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You care for Him.” 
 
I love going out far from the city lights at night to stare up at the stars. When you look at all that God has created in the heavens you can’t help but feel awe. The universe is so vast and we are so small. The bible says He knows each of the stars and has given them names. (Psalm 147:4) The number of stars in the known universe number in the trillions. When you look at the pictures taken from the Hubble space telescope, you see the beauty that is out there.
 
When seen from space, the earth is like a jewel hanging in space. The earth out of all the worlds in this galaxy is the most beautiful. God placed it just in the right orbit. A little closer to the sun and we’d burn up or a little further away and we’d freeze.
 
All He created is perfect. It overwhelms you. He created all this for me? For my pleasure? To think that God cares for us tiny creatures on a world smaller than a speck of dust compared to the size of the universe. And He knows each us by name! He even numbers the hair on our heads. (Matt. 10:30). He came down to this little speck of dust and became one of us in the person of Jesus Christ. He died and rose again. Why? Because He loved us (John 3:16) and we are sinners (Romans 5:8). He is not willing that any of us should perish but that we should all be reconciled to Him. (2 Peter 3:9).
 
Dear Lord we stand in awe of You. You are indeed an awesome God. We thank You for Your sacrifice. Take our lives Lord and make them yours.
 

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

 

I encourage you to join Awesome MSN Spaces and let your faith be shown!

 

Christians and Demonic Possession


Today there is a teaching going around saying that Christians can be possessed by demons. Paul said in Galations 1:6-8; "I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed."

No where in the Word of God is there an example of a believer having to be delivered from demonic possession. We can be oppressed but not possessed. When we ask for forgiveness for our sins and invite Christ to be our Lord we are changed. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says; "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." We become a temple in which the Holy Spirit dwells 1 Cor. 3:16. God will not share His temple with another 1 Cor 6:14-16.

The problem today is that everyone want to find someone to blame for their sin instead of putting the blame on whom it squarely belongs. Like the American comedian, Flip Wilson used to say, they say; "The devil made me do it." So who is to blame? It is our own flesh. Our old man.

The Word says in Galations 5:17;"The old sinful nature loves to do evil, which is just opposite from what the Holy Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are opposite from what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, and your choices are never free from this conflict."

And in Galations 5:19-21; "When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, your lives will produce these evil results: sexual immorality, impure thoughts, eagerness for lustful pleasure, idolatry, participation in demonic activities, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, divisions, the feeling that everyone is wrong except those in your own little group, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other kinds of sin. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God." 

I know Christians that call these works of the flesh, demons. They will say that they have a demon of lust rather than accept responsibility for their actions.

Have you ever noticed the relief you feel when you are able to shift the blame for something you have done to another. Like Adam in the garden we point to someone else as the cause for our rebellion. Satan is laughing because he has all these people bound up with the belief that they will be changed if they can just get rid of those demons instead of dealing with their own sinful nature. Can Christians be possessed? No! The Word says that those whom the Son sets free are free indeed. John 8:36. How do we defeat the flesh? Through renewing your mind by reading God’s word and spending time in prayer.

Romans 12:1-2 says; "And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice–the kind he will accept. When you think of what he has done for you, is this too much to ask? Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect his will really is."

The more time you spend with Jesus the more you will become like Him. We can trust God that there is coming a day when we will be free from this flesh and it’s passions. Praise You Lord, we look forward to that glorious day!

 

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

 

I encourage you to join Awesome MSN Spaces and let your faith be shown!

 

 

Building On a Solid Foundation


Anyone who listens to my teaching and obeys me is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the flood waters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse, because it is built on rock. But anyone who hears my teaching and ignores it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will fall with a mighty crash." Matthew 7:24-27

Anyone who knows anything about constructing a building knows you have to have a solid foundation to build on. Without that foundation the building will shift and eventually collapse. The Leaning Tower of Pisa was not originally constructed to lean. The builders didn’t take into consideration the ground they were building on and because of that through the years it began to lean. Under the soil at that location is a soft layer of clay which is made up of sand. One day it will topple over.

Like buildings our lives and families need to have a firm and strong foundation. Divorce and the destruction of the family unit is a major problem today. Many turn to psychology or religion to fix their problems but soon they find that these solutions are like the clay the Tower of Pisa is built on and slowly their family is in danger of collapse once again.

There is only one true foundation and it is not a religion, it is a person. His name is Jesus. In Matthew chapters 5 to 7 Jesus gave us an outline on how to build a strong foundation. Your life must be totally built upon Him. Without Him you are lost and you life and dreams will one day collapse. There is an old hymn that says: "On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand."

Is your life built on sinking sand? Are you willing to build upon Him? Will you turn to Him today? It’s simple. All you have to do is admit you are a sinner and in need of Him. Then ask Him into your heart. Now, find a Bible, read it and attend a Bible believing church. Pray and ask Him to straighten out your foundation.

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

 

 

Throwing In the Towel


Why do we as Christians so often get discouraged and want to give up? Why do we often put our eyes on the circumstances instead of our Saviour? We look at the storms in our lives and so often want to "throw in the towel". As a very good friend of mine said to me recently; "Why do so many Christians use that phrase? What good would it do you? Can you actually throw in a towel? What if all Christians decided to throw in the towel, where would the world be today? What if Jesus Himself in the garden instead of saying; "Nevertheless Father not My will but Yours be done" said "I can’t do this, I’m throwing in the towel" We would all be lost."

So often we forget the time that Jesus and His disciples were in a boat and a storm came up. Jesus was sleeping and the disciples fearing for their lives cried out; "Master, Master wake up we are going to drown!" Jesus woke up and calmed the storm and rebuked them for their lack of faith. Luke 8:22-25 They had God in their boat and they were afraid of drowning!?!? We have to get it into our hearts and minds that God is in our boat and no storm can touch us if He is there with us.

So why do we get discouraged and want through in the towel? Jesus said "Come to me all you who are weary and heavily burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden light." Matthew 11:28-30 and "These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer for I have overcome the world." John 16:33.

The promises and encouragement for believers found in God’’s word are endless. So why do we want to throw in the towel? Because we take our eyes of the Lord and put them on the storm. My sister in the Lord has only been a Christian for 3 years and yet she showed a lot of maturity in what she said to me. God used her to get me to rethink what I was saying. I myself will never again threaten to throw in the towel. God’s promises are true and His word never fails! Thank-you Jesus for being in my boat!

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

 

Children: A Blessing or a Curse?


I read a startling statistic in a report on the family the other day. The average number of children per family in Canada is less than 2. That is not good news for our country. It means our population is shrinking. If it were not for immigration we would have a smaller population than before the last census. Another thing about that report that bothered me was that in 78% of all two parent families, both the father and mother went out to work.

Small families and the mother working are relatively new things in society. They used to be the exception and not the norm. It was considered normal in my grandparents days for a family to have as many as 10 children and for the mom to be at home. They were not as materialistic as we are today and yet they were blessed. Mothers were very industrious in cooking and making clothes for the kids. Very much like the woman found in Proverbs chapter 31. They knew that God would supply, no matter how many children they had. They believed what the Bible said in Psalm 127:3 "Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward." The more children they had the more they were blessed.

Now most couples today don’t have time for children. They are too busy with the careers they have set for themselves. Always working and yet never satisfied with what they have. Society hasn’t helped as things change so quickly that many have to go to night school to keep up with the changes.

Feminist’s have told mothers that they need to get out and get a job because to stay home and raise children is slavery and women shouldn’t be tied down to that.

Abortion of children is common place as that child would interfere with the woman’s or couple’s lifestyle.

Children have become a curse. We are a selfish society that would rather let others raise our children. Which is why we have daycare. Then when these children grow up and turn their backs on us we ask "Why?" Those that dare to have large families and have mom staying at home are looked down upon as backward and yet the children from these families mostly are loyal and take care of their parents when they are older.

Can things change? I believe they can and God’s Word has the answer. Look at Psalm 127 in it’s entirety.

Unless the LORD builds a house, the work of the builders is useless. Unless the LORD protects a city, guarding it with sentries will do no good. It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones. Children are a gift from the LORD; they are a reward from him. Children born to a young man are like sharp arrows in a warrior’s hands. How happy is the man whose quiver is full of them! He will not be put to shame when he confronts his accusers at the city gates. (NLT)

This is radical and yet it works. There are two couples with 6 children or more in our church that put this into practice and they are blessed and their children are a blessing not only to them but to us as well. So, where do children stand in your scheme of things? Is God building your house or are you?

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

 

Unity


Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, Running down on the beard, The beard of Aaron, Running down on the edge of his garments. It is like the dew of Hermon, Descending upon the mountains of Zion; For there the LORD commanded the blessing; Life forevermore. Psalm 133 (NKJV)

"I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.. "And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: "I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. John 17:20-23 (NKJV)

I have never felt as loved and welcomed in a church as much as I feel now. The church we belong to is unique. English and French join together and we see no difference in each other. There is so much love especially from my French brothers and sisters in Christ. I love them and I love their language (Lord help me to learn it quickly!) and culture.

It was not always this way for me. My father was raised a Roman Catholic. My grandfather was French and my grandmother Irish. When my father met my mother, a Protestant, and wanted to marry her, he was told by the priest that he would be excommunicated and would go to hell for marrying an English Protestant. After he married my mother, his family turned his back on him. He turned against his culture and refused to speak French at home and turned to alcohol. My brothers and I were sent to an English school and lived in Verdun, which at that time was mostly English. My friends and I were constantly fighting with the French and trying to prove how much better we were than them. As I grew up I became prejudiced and thought why should I learn French, no one was going to force it upon me. Even as a Christian I used to enjoy arguing the politics of the land, it was us and them. But oh how wrong I’d been.

If you say you love God and hate your brother, you are a liar. How can you not love your brother whom you can see and say you love god whom you can’t see? 1 John 4:19 In Christ there is no us and them. We are all foreigners in this world. We are citizens of heaven. Jesus prayed that we be one. We are to be examples to this world. In Heaven we will all speak the same language, a heavenly language. Forgive me my brothers and sisters for my past views and ignorance. We as Christians need to work together to bring Christ to Quebec and we can only do this by tearing down the cultural barriers of the past that said it was us and them. Let us, through Christ’s love be an example to Quebec and Canada.

Brothers and sisters around the world. Please pray for Quebec. It is one of the least evangelized places in the world. It seems strange as it being in the middle of North America and all. But it is. Out of a population of just over seven million and only .04 percent of those are born again Christians. Never in it’s history has it known a sustained move of God. Will you pledge to pray for this great province of Canada. You don’t know how much it would be appreciated. – Gerry

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

Security


These are scary times if you don’t have something to anchor you life. The news is filled with things that make you wonder how much longer this world will last. Jesus said these things would happen in the last days. Jesus told them;

"Don’t let anyone mislead you. For many will come in my name, saying, `I am the Messiah.’ They will lead many astray. And wars will break out near and far, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must come, but the end won’t follow immediately. The nations and kingdoms will proclaim war against each other, and there will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this will be only the beginning of the horrors to come." Matthew 24:4-8

Sounds like today’s headlines doesn’t it? If I didn’t know there was a hope, I would be pretty scared! But there is a hope! As a Christian I know that my hope is not based upon what I hear and see, but on the promises that Jesus gave me and all other believers. You see Jesus promised us that He would never leave us and that He would be with us even to the end of time. Matthew 28:20 He also said in John 14:17; "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

"Listen to what awaits those who know Jesus as there personal Lord and Saviour. "

"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a beautiful bride prepared for her husband. I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, "Look, the home of God is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will remove all of their sorrows, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. For the old world and its evils are gone forever. "And the one sitting on the throne said, "Look, I am making all things new!" And then he said to me, "Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true." And he also said, "It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega–the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give the springs of the water of life without charge! All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children." Revelation 21:1-7.

Do you want to be free from fear? Do you want have that security and peace that Jesus has promised? You can, simply by confessing that you are a sinner and asking Jesus to come into your heart. It’s that simple. I promise you that you too will have that security and peace He has given us.

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog. Turn your space settings from private to public.

 

A Cloud of Witnesses


Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2

I have always been fascinated by the marathon run in the Olympics. The runners run for very long distances to obtain a medal. All along the way there are those who cheer them on. The crowd rises to their feet as each one enters the stadium and applauds them. Even those who don’’t come in the top three are applauded. The marathon is a grueling race and some never finish, they drop out because of exhaustion. I remember seeing films of men who were so determined that to make it that they would almost have to crawl to make it across the finish line. To be a marathoner requires discipline and training. Without those 2 essentials they won’t last.

Being a Christian is like being a marathoner. It requires discipline and training. These come from spending time in God’’s word and in prayer. Without those 2 essentials it can be a long and agonizing race and many wind up dropping out. But for those who endure there is as the bible says a cloud of witnesses cheering us on. Those who have gone before us and obtained the crown.

Are you willing to do what it takes to win that race? It requires as Hebrews says that you lay aside every weight, and the sins that so easily ensnare us. What are the things that ensnare you? Are you willing to let them go? The prize is eternal life. It is ending that race by running into arms of Jesus.

Mark Schultz wrote a song called Cloud of Witnesses. It’s about a group of friends and their walk with the Lord. The last verse and chorus says; So when it comes the time that Heaven calls, they’’ll come running, to see the ones who’’ve gone before. Who ran the race and made the journey home. To find them waiting at the finish line cheering happily. They will run and they will see, a cloud of witnesses lined up on a street of gold as they run the final mile that leads them to the throne. And through that cloud of witnesses, they can see God upon that throne and as they fall into His arms they know their home in a cloud of witnesses. Lord Jesus we long for that day!

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog.

God bless

Gerry

 

Watching Our Tongues


A wholesome tongue is a tree of life, But perverseness in it breaks the spirit. Proverbs 15:4

Listen, for I will speak of excellent things, and from the opening of my lips will come right things. Proverbs 8:6

Do you realize that we shape our children by the way we speak to them? The Jews know this and bless their children everyday. That is why many of their offspring have gone on to become successful. When you look at many of the people who changed this world you will find that they were Jews. Some examples of them are Alfred Einstein, scientist, Henry Kissinger, politician, Mark Spitz, olympian, Sigmund Freud, doctor and many others. They have learned to speak blessing into their children’’s lives every morning.

In today’’s world it is common to hear a parent calling their child an idiot or telling them they are stupid. Children have become a burden to a parent’’s career. Parents curse their children instead of encouraging them and then they wonder why these children turn to sin, drugs and crime. The Word of God says that children are a gift and a heritage from the Lord. Psalm 127:3 Every parent will have to answer one day for the careless words they have spoken to their offspring.

My dad was an alcoholic and would often pick on me. He would tell me I was stupid and would never amount to anything. I was told it so often, I believed it. I had no confidence at all in any endeavour I would try to get into. I had trouble keeping any kind of meaningful relationship. It was only Jesus and the prayers of a faithful grandmother and mother that kept me from falling into deep sin and perversion. I have forgiven my dad today and know who I am in Christ. I gain my confidence from Him. I couldn’t care less what people say about me. I have learned from this.

Being a single dad for eleven years has not been easy, but I have never told my kids they were anything less than who they are in Jesus. Like the Jews I speak blessing into their lives everyday and as I do this I see them grow in confidence and assurance of God’’s love for them. Please love your kids. They are not a burden. They are the future. Speak well to them and teach them to do the same when they have kids of their own one day.

Thanks to Launa of Launa’s Little Piece of Heaven for creating the Take a Stand For Jesus banner for me. Let everyone know you are taking a stand and copy and paste it into your latest blog.

God bless

Gerry