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Archive for June, 2008

Fathers


a141 There is no other member of the traditional family that is maligned more today than the father. In society today we are told that fathers are a throw back to the old patriarchal system. On television shows and commercials, they are portrayed as being a not so bright klutz. Mom and the kids have more of a clue than he does. Even the gay characters are presented as being stronger role models than these poor guys.

Why does the media want to destroy the image of a father so much? First of all, God is the Father. He is our Creator and our perfect role model. In the last few years I have seen Him portrayed as a senile and forgetful old man, with little interest in what’’s going on here on earth. Nothing could be further from the truth.

A perfect example of God’s father’s heart is found in the story of the prodigal son in Luke

Jesus continued: "There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.

"Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.

"When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’ So he got up and went to his father.
"But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.

"The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’

    "But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

"Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’

"The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’

" ‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ "

Children need strong role models and when they can’t find it in a father, they look elsewhere. A lot of the times the role models they find lead them on a path of destruction. This is why satan and the media are so intent on destroying the image of a strong and faithful father.

The Word of God emphasizes the role model fathers are to be in Ephesians 6:4; "And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord."

Not much is written about Joseph and yet he had more of an impact on Jesus’s life than any other human being. If you read the passages about him in the beginning of Matthew and Luke you will find a man of character. A man with a strong faith and conviction as well as a great devotion to God. In all things God asked him to do concerning his family he obeyed. He must have been quite a man for God to entrust His Son to him. A strong role model.

I grew up in a home where I was robbed from having a dad because of his alcohol addiction. I had no role model that I could look up to and when I got married and was to become a father myself, I despaired. How could I be a father? I never learned how. I remember going into Pastor Ken Bombay’s office and asking for his prayers and advise. What he told me was so simple and yet it changed my life forever. He told me that to be a father all I had to do was look to The Father and ask Him to teach about His fathers heart. Studying the Word changed  me and when my daughter was born and I held her in my arms for the first time, I knew I would never worry about being a father again. God had become my role model and because of that I have become a model for my children to follow as well. I have been a single father now for the last 14 years and don’t regret a single moment.

If you want to see God’s father’s heart follow this link;

http://www.fathersloveletter.com/

Take Up Your Cross (It’s Not About You!)


wyd-cross Then Jesus said to His disciples, If anyone desires to be My disciple, let him deny himself [disregard, lose sight of, and forget himself and his own interests] and take up his cross and follow Me cleave steadfastly to Me, conform wholly to My example in living and, if need be, in dying, also].

For whoever is bent on saving his [temporal] life [his comfort and security here] shall lose it [eternal life]; and whoever loses his life [his comfort and security here] for My sake shall find it [life everlasting]. Matthew 16:24-25 (Amplified Bible)

Tough words. Especially because of much of the teaching that goes on around in Christian circles today. In many churches it’s all about receiving a blessing and because Christ suffered for you, you don’t have to suffer. What a lie from hell. In Christ we have no choice. In order to live we must die because it’s in the dying we live. We must die to all our desires. All the things we want to do. Every passion and every longing has to die. Every single thing that would try to raise it’s self in importance over Christ has to perish. Everything has to be left at the cross.

You see it’s not about you and your comfort or your lack thereof. It’s all about Jesus and bringing His love to this lost and dying world. And yet we worry over such trivial things. We try to meet needs that Christ said He would fill. In the early days of the church the believer’s focus was not on the pleasures of this world but on the promise of the life that awaited them after this short life was over. The realization that eternity with Christ meant much more than this blink of an eye could ever matter.

Jesus promised that if we would obey Him He would take care of our every need. He said in Matthew 6:25-34

Thereforeclifton_country_pk_09_d12-2 I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what  you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?  Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? lilies-of-field
“So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they  grow: they neither toil nor spin;  and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’  For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

What Christ asks of you is that you live for Him and not this world. A life that is surrendered to Him shines brightest in this dark world. Our every waking moment and thought should be on Christ and winning the lost to Him. 

Some of us want heaven on earth. It’s not going to happen. The bible makes it very clear that because He suffered, you will suffer as well. This world will hate and despise you as much as it did Him. Many of us when we suffer we say; "Why me?" Why not you? Are you greater then Christ? Paul said in 2 Corinthians 4:16-18;

Therefore LiftUpTheCross1cwe do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 

I have suffered a lot in my life and so many of you have suffered as well and yet all that we have suffered is nothing compared to what our Saviour suffered for us. We have nothing to complain about. Our hope my brothers and sisters is in Christ alone and if the path that He chooses for us to follow is one of suffering for His name, then we should gladly follow. What awaits us is beyond our imagination. Think today on heaven and the New Jerusalem, your true home. Daddy’s waiting there to take you in His arms.

If you are facing trials at this moment know that the Lord is with you and will carry you all the way through. Trust Him. He will see you through.

10 Ways to Hinder Worship


Asleep In the Light


Asleep In the Light – Keith Green

 

Do you see, do you see, all the people sinking down,

Don’t you care, don’t you care, are you gonna let them drown,

How can you be so numb, not to care if they come,

You close your eyes and pretend the job’s done.

 

Oh Bless me Lord, bless me Lord, you know it’s all I ever hear,

No one aches, no one hurts, no one even sheds one tear,

But He cries, He weeps, He bleeds, and He cares for your needs,

And you just lay back and keep soaking it in, oh, can’t you see it’s such sin?

 

Cause He brings people to your door,

And you turn them away, as you smile and say,

God bless you, be at peace, and all Heaven just weeps,

Cause Jesus came to your door, you’ve left Him out on the streets.

 

Open up, open up, and give yourself away,

You’ve seen the need, you hear the cry, so how can you delay,

God’s calling and you’re the one, but like Jonah you run,

He’s told you to speak, but you keep holding it in,

Oh, can’t you see it’s such sin?

 

The world is sleeping in the dark,

That the church can’t fight, cause it’s asleep in the light,

How can you be so dead, when you’ve been so well fed,

Jesus rose from the grave, and you, you can’t even get out of bed,

Oh, Jesus rose from the dead, come on, get out of your bed.

 

How can you be so numb, not to care if they come,

You close your eyes and pretend the job’s done,

You close your eyes and pretend the job’s done,

Don’t close your eyes, don’t pretend the job’s done.

Come away, come away, come away with Me, My love,

Come away, from this mess, come away with Me, My love.