May 13, 2019

Image result for picture of a chicken

PSA, PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT—DO NOT TAKE ALEVE FOR ANY REASON AT ALL. IN MEN IT CAN IMITATE ALL THE SYMPTOMS OF PROSTATE CANCER, BLOOD IN YOUR URINE, PSA NUMBERS UP. OR CAUSE IRREGULAR HEART BEATING.

Chickens determine who is the “top chicken,” the “bottom chicken,” and where all the rest fit in between by pecking (striking with their beaks). The chicken that can dominate through pecking is deemed the greatest in the “pecking order.”

 Like chickens, humans frequently attempt to find their place in the pecking order. But one of our preferred methods (at least in civilized groups) is by arguing among ourselves about who is the greatest. The disciples seem to have preferred that approach, for they argued among themselves about who was the greatest (see Mk 9:34). Upon hearing their discussion, Jesus quickly set them straight by explaining the true way they could determine who was the “greatest”: “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all” (v. 35).

 To be a servant requires that we serve others by helping or doing work for them. We serve God most directly when we serve others (see Eph 2:10). Here are three other things to know about service:

  1. Service is sanctifying, not redemptive—No type or amount of service can help us earn our salvation. Salvation is attained by grace through faith and is a free gift from God (see Eph 2:8). We don’t serve to earn God’s favor but as a response of love for God.

  2. Service is about using our spiritual gifts—In the Bible, the words servant and minister and service and ministry are synonyms. When we serve others we minister to them by using our spiritual gifts, such as teaching, healing, and giving. Such service, however, is not limited to our spiritual gifts.

  3. Service is a means of grace—A means of grace is God’s tool to strengthen and nurture us so we grow in conformity to Christ. As R. C. Sproul says, we don’t always think about service as a means of grace, but the more we are able to serve in the kingdom of God, the more Christlike we become.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Remember Caliste Burt and Stephanie Taylor, both have brain tumors that are inoperable. Pray they are healed and that they don’t live in fear.

Pray for salvation for Barbara D, Mona r, Norma Perales and her husband Rick Sr. and her adult son Rick Jr.

Pray for Ricky R, this is his 4th week sober

Pray for Betty Cox, she is having heart problems.

Pray for Gary Miller, former cult member, and totally won’t hear anything about Christianity. Actually gets violent if you are persistent.

thinking over feeling

“Ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you” (Rom 6:17).

  The purpose of doctrine is to produce the personification of truth.

The sublimest truths are still needed to enforce the simplest responsibilities. As the laws which mould the stars and move the gigantic orbs of Saturn and Neptune in their tremendous circuits, shape the dewdrop that glistens at the end of a blade of grass, so should everything in the Christian’s life be regulated by the principles which lie in the Person and Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ. To isolate Christian morality from Christian theology is to rend asunder the teachings of the New Testament, as to its deepest and most vital elements.

The knowledge of doctrine, essential as it is, gives no power. One might be very well up on the doctrine of deliverance, and know absolutely nothing of its practical reality. It is as our hearts are under the sway of that grace which is ministered to us through our Lord Jesus Christ, and as we are knit to Him in affection, that we touch and taste a new life, and are severed in heart from all that constituted the life of our old man. Thus the body of sin is annulled for our hearts, and we do not henceforth serve sin.

In the New Testament literature of the Church, creed and conduct are always related. Doctrine and practice, theology and morality, knowledge and action are inseparably connected, being related to one another as foundation to superstructure, as center to circumference, as cause to effect. Some expound without applying, and some endeavor to apply what has not been expounded, but the Apostles always do both. When revealed truth is divorced from Christian living it becomes an impotent abstraction.

  “Being, then, made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness” (Rom. 6:18).

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Remember Roger S, back surgery next week

Donald P, surgery next week for skin cancer

Praise from Lily M, she is now a citizen of the USA, and got her drivers license today as well, at the age of 43

Remember Bill Warneke and chronic neck pain and depression

2 weeks before Caliste has the 3rd and final brain tumor removed, pray also that her health and strength stay up there so she has a fast recovery. Pray that there is no fear.

Pray for Bill L, major health problems, it’s a miracle that he is still living.

Remember Olivia in prayer, that she carries to full term.

Pray for Steve H, and the hunt for a great pastor.

Pray for my back which is acting up, I’ve lost track of how many rods and screws are back there.

A SECOND FALL

February 27, 2019

adult alone autumn brick
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

“Walk in (dependence upon) the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Gal. 5:16).

That which we most dread—weakness and failure—are the very means by which our Father turns us from self-reliance to full dependence upon the Holy Spirit.

Walking in dependence upon the Holy Spirit leads us upwards in our hearts to where we are in the Lord Jesus. The new man finds delight in Him, and nowhere else. The Spirit is the living link between us and the Son in glory. He causes us to gaze upon Him, and we become changed into the same image, from glory to glory. This is true Christianity—the heart drawn off the earthly, carnal distractions here, and more completely occupied with the One who is our Christian life.

As the believer grows, and his path becomes more involved, he is taught more about the Holy Spirit’s ministry, for he needs this doctrine increasingly for his comfort and rest in trial. His faith is not so strong and unwavering as he imagined; the ardor of his love soon vanishes; the power of sin, which at first he fancied was utterly broken, makes itself felt again, prayer becomes languid, and joy seems to have taken flight.

In other words, the Father leads him into the valley, and lest he should make an idol of his faith, and a well-spring of a cistern, he is taught something of himself. Who does not know of this second stage of the Christian life, at first so painful, so humiliating, and filling the soul with perplexity? It is thus that we learn that the Spirit who has renewed our spirit must also sustain our new life; that we depend entirely on divine grace and strength, not merely to bring us to the Lord Jesus, but to keep us abiding in Him where He is.

“Kept by the power of God through faith” (1 Peter 1:5).

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Barbara D salvation.

Pray for Bob L, fractured his hip falling off his tractor

Caliste is home resting and the doctors are consulting with surgeons from around the world to see if there is a way to do the surgery on the 3rd and final brain tumor.

Pray for Dave I, recovering for cancer surgery

Pray for Steve H, and the hunt for a great pastor

Pray for Larry, prostate cancer, and he really waited to long

Remember Bill Warneke, chronic pain and depression

Pray for Cherry P, she has had a rough week and sorely tempted, but she calls and asks for prayer or a visit. (update; I’m so thankful when a new Christian is willing to be held accountable and knows when to ask for help).

Thank you for all the prayers, today was one of the best days I’ve had in a long time.

GROWING UP NEVER ENDS

February 22, 2019

man in black and white hoodie

We’ve come to a study of the qualities that describe what Christ-like maturity looks like. Since becoming Christ-like makes one an example to follow, we will begin here. A mature Christian is someone who is a model, a pacesetter; someone who influences others in positive ways according to biblical standards! Modeling Christian virtues, virtues of true spirituality, is crucial to effective ministry in the world. Without biblical and godly models we are cast into a restless sea that can only toss up refuse and mud (Isa. 57:20). William J. Bennett recently said, “We—all of us, but especially the young—need around us individuals who possess a certain nobility, a largeness of soul, and qualities of human experience worth imitating and striving for.”

People can never be biblical leaders and truly mature until they come to realize that God has called them to be examples to others. As the Lord Jesus pointed out, “A disciple is not greater than his teacher, but everyone when fully trained will be like his teacher” (Luke 6:40). In this context, the Lord was showing that one’s true spirituality, or godliness (or lack thereof) is revealed in our actions and that such actions will of necessity influence others either for good or for evil. Students, sons, daughters, and the flock, tend to emulate their leaders, parents, guardians, teachers, or heroes. The tendency is for us to shy away from this responsibility and reality, but in order to be truly mature and a leader, one must accept this as a reality of leadership.

Principles Related to Being Examples

In regard to being examples to others, it is helpful to consider the following principles:

(1) Being a godly example is not an option, it is commanded in Scripture. Several passages dealing with this issue will be considered later in this study.

(2) We have no choice in being an example of some kind and having an impact on those around us, but we do have a choice in the kind of witness and impact we provide. Someone is going to follow us and be influenced by us. The questions are: Do we know where we are going? Are we providing the kind of example that will enhance their lives, or are we like the blind leading the blind?

I think it was Professor Hendricks who said in his tapes on leadership, “I once saw a bumper sticker that said, “don’t follow me, I’m lost too.” That’s the state of the world and, unfortunately, of many well-meaning Christians. They are like the commercial pilot who told his passengers, “I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is we are lost, but the good news is we are making good time.”

Motion in itself does not mean direction. Activity in itself never means effectiveness. We can be like the cowboy who rushed into the coral, bridled and saddled his horse and rode off in all directions. We need quality lives with quality motion aimed in the right direction with specific, biblical objectives.

(3) We need Christian maturity that provides people with real honest-to-God examples of authentic Christ-like living. Effective ministry to others is often equated with such things as dynamic personalities, with talent, giftedness, training, enthusiasm, and with charisma. But these things alone are inadequate, as is so evident by the leadership we have seen in the top government positions in our country the last few years. Much more is needed. In the Bible, the qualities that lead to effective ministry are found in the elements of spiritual character, in the character of Christ reproduced in us by the ministry of the Spirit (see Eph. 4:12f.; Gal. 5:22ff).

(4) Mature Christians and leaders have a responsibility to maintain a consistent example. This is a constant theme of the Bible. Other than the raw power of the Word itself, nothing is so determinative for spiritual change in the lives of others as one’s own example. This truth is strongly taught in 1 Thessalonians 2:1ff where Paul recalls his manner of life and that of his team to the Thessalonians.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Remember Olivia, that she will carry to full term. Her medication that is saving her life also may put the baby to harm. It’s a wait and see situation.

Remember Dave I as he recovers from cancer surgery.

Pray for Steve H and the hunt for a great pastor.

Remember the Perales family, Norma, Rick Sr. and Rick Jr. in need of salvation.

Prayer works, I’m in less pain each day, thanks all. My doctor thinks it from one of the meds I’ve probably been on to long.

Prayer for Barbara d, cancer, heart problems and a host of other problems.

Pray for Bill Warneke, chronic pain and depression.

Pray for Paul K, 2 cysts on his pancreas

Pray for Caliste Burt, she is home resting, while doctors puzzle out how to remove the 3rd brain tumor

DIVINE HEALING

January 6, 2019

Resurrection-Doubting-Thomas

I just want to be up front about where I stand on divine healing. I believe that God can and does offer us divine healing. I think the best book written on the subject is by Andrew Murray. You can find this book free online.

I will also say I don’t understand why it happens one time and not another, only that it is the providence of God. I don’t believe the gifts of the Holy Spirit disappeared just because we got the bible as some teach. The idea that “that which is perfect” is a reference to the bible.

And as long as 1 Corinthians 1:7 is in the bible then all the gifts are still here.

So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: (KJV)

I have seen first hand divine healing that was immediately proven by a doctor. A man was being rolled into surgery for lung cancer, as they wheeled him into surgery, he cried out that he felt warm all over and for the first and only time started speaking in tongues. His doctor was a Christian man who didn’t believe in spiritual gifts but was so curious he had the man x-rayed again and there was no cancer. I know this story to be true as I was there when it happened.

And yet I know a dear old Pentecostal lady that is suffering greatly at this moment, who has had numerous healings in her life. But now she is suffering greatly and there has been no healing.

Then one more example, my best friend had a huge mass on his spine, the doctors looking at the x-ray told him it was cancer and they didn’t believe they could operate. I laid hands on him and prayed for healing. His doctor a skeptical Hindu, wanted to humiliate me and ordered x-rays to prove me wrong. The x-rays came back and no mass. Several more x-rays and still no mass. The pain was gone and he was released from the hospital.

Friends, God still heals, I do not know why it happens the way it does. China right now is experiencing an out pouring of the Holy Spirit and missionaries are saying it’s like the Book of Acts is happening all over. Hundreds being saved daily and great miracles with it.

God heals in many different ways.

God first revealed Himself as the Healer of His people in a strange little Old Testament incident described in Exodus 15. After four hundred years of bondage, the Israelites had just been delivered from Egypt by the mighty hand of God. They had seen plagues devastate the greatest civilization on the face of the earth. They’d had the exhilarating experience of passing through the Red Sea on a dry path while the waters stood firm as walls on either side. They had watched Pharaoh’s elite corps of horsemen and chariots drown—the enemies who had terrorized them all their lives had been defeated. In this dramatic way God gave us a picture of the first step we experience today as He begins our emotional healing: freedom from the bondage of our past.

GOD OFFERS HEALING FRONT THE PAST

When the Israelites saw that their bondage in Egypt was over and their former masters were powerless to enslave them again, they no longer had any reason to fear their former masters or obey them.

Much like those Israelites, when we put our faith in Jesus Christ we are freed from bondage to our old master, Satan. This liberation should also deliver us from the influence of the past on our emotions as well. But while this can happen right away, for most of us, it is a more gradual process. The first part of Exodus 15 is a song of praise to the Lord for His great victory over the Israelites’ enemies. The people were on an emotional high. Then began their journey toward the Promised Land.

As the book of Exodus tells us, “Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea and went into the Desert of Shur. For three days they traveled in the desert without finding water. When they came to Marah, they could not drink its water because it was bitter. (That is why the place is called Marah.) So the people grumbled against Moses, saying ‘What are we to drink?” (Exod. 15:22-24).

Three days in the desert without water, then the disappointment of undrinkable water, and God’s people soon forgot His power and care for them. They could have said, “Look what God has already done for us! After all that, He’ll surely find a way to provide water for us. We’ll keep on trusting Him.” But they didn’t.

Instead the Israelites grumbled, a habit that persisted all through their journey. The text says they grumbled against Moses, but in reality, they were grumbling against the God who was leading them in the pillar of cloud and fire that moved before them. They were babies in their walk with their God. Fortunately, He understood that and was very patient with them. Despite their complaining attitude He responded to their spokesman’s plea: “Moses cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a piece of wood. He threw it into the water, and the water became sweet” (Exod. 15:25).

Such a simple solution. So easy for God to do. And then: “The LORD made a decree and a law for them, and there he tested them. He said, ‘If you listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you” (Exod. 15:26-27).

In the original language, God said, “I am Yahweh-Rapha, the Lord who heals you.” Rapha means “to mend, to cure, to repair, to make whole.”

God gave this promise to the ancient nation of Israel, but it includes a principle that still applies to us today:

Emotional and spiritual health are by-products of obedience.

Health is related to obedience both spiritually, physically, and emotionally. If we obey the commands against sexual immorality, we will not be infected by the sexually transmitted diseases that are rampant in our modern world. Meanwhile, our self-worth will not suffer from being used, cast off, and rejected.

If we obey the command to not covet, we will have a healthy attitude toward both relationships and possessions. We will be grateful for all that God has given us, whether much or little, and be immune to discontent, which works like acid in our emotions.

If we obey the commands against stealing, we will have healthy self-respect, a good name, and no criminal record.

If we honor our parents instead of rebelling against them, we will protect our family relationships.

There are innumerable healthy benefits to having a clear conscience. And God challenged His people to test Him and experience Him in a tangible way—He specifically said He would bless them with health if they obeyed His commands. But there’s more to the incident at Marah for us to learn . . .

THE POWER OF THE CROSS

The instrument God used to heal the bitter waters was a piece of wood. Why not salt, the substance Elisha used hundreds of years later? Why not just a spoken word? Instead God directed Moses to throw a piece of wood into the water because that piece of wood pointed to another—the cross of Jesus Christ. The cross is the only way the bitter waters of our lives can be healed. In other words:

The cross is God’s remedy for emotional pain.

God’s Additional Instruments of Healing

Hundreds of years before Christ’s birth, the prophet Isaiah, who was prophesying about the work of the Messiah, said, “Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isa. 53:4-6).

Isaiah said that Jesus would be taken up, carried, pierced, crushed, and wounded for our infirmities, our sorrows (emotions), our transgressions, our iniquities, our punishment.

Why did He do it? To bring us peace and healing: As

God, Our Healer

Isaiah said, “By His wounds we are healed.” Some people teach that this means physical healing is guaranteed by Christ’s atonement. But Peter interpreted this passage differently. He wrote, “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls” (1 Pet. 2:24-25).

Peter applies Isaiah’s words to our salvation. God knew that we have to be healed spiritually for there to be emotional healing. The cross of Jesus Christ, where He bore our sins and took our punishment, made it possible for us to be reconciled to our God. It enabled us to come back to Him, cleansed and forgiven. His sacrifice for us brings us peace. That’s spiritual and emotional healing, isn’t it?

Maybe you’re thinking, What about physical healing?

Remember that all healing is from God, whether it’s through rest, sunshine, a healthy diet, the God-given skill of physicians or surgeons, or the miracles of prayer.

And as far as our emotions are concerned, God uses, in addition to the cross of Jesus Christ, at least four “instruments” to heal us: His Word, the power that comes from praising Him, the encouragement of His people, and the gift of a godly self-image. Let’s look at each of these components of spiritual healing.

GOD’S WORD BRINGS HEALING TO THE PRESENT

The healing power of God’s Word is shown in, among other passages, Psalm 107, a song of praise to the Lord for His unfailing love for His people. He demonstrated this love by His deliverance when they called upon Him in their need: “Some became fools through their rebellious ways and suffered affliction because of their iniquities. They loathed all food and drew near the gates of death. Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He sent forth his Word and healed them” (Ps. 107:17-20).

Here we have people who were suffering affliction and physical, emotional, and spiritual sickness as a consequence of persistent rebellion against the Lord. Yet when they cried out to Him, He “sent forth His word and healed them.”

How does God use His Word to heal?

Jesus demonstrated this godly gift beautifully when He was here on earth. He healed every possible affliction that humanity suffers, and He did so to demonstrate that He was the only One who could heal us from the root cause of all our troubles—sin.

Let’s take a look at one specific incident. Luke 7 describes a Roman centurion whose servant had fallen ill and was near death. The centurion had heard about Jesus, and he had sent some elders of the Jews to ask Him for help.

Jesus responded to the request for healing by making His way toward the centurion’s home, but before He could get there, another message from the centurion was brought to Him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it” (Luke 7:6-8).

Jesus listened to this statement in amazement and told the crowd that He had never seen that kind of faith among the Jews. When the messengers returned to the centurion’s house, they found that the servant had been healed.

This Roman warrior understood authority, and he knew Jesus had the authority to heal from a distance. Jesus could send forth His Word and heal, and that’s just what He did.

But does He do it today? And if He does, how? What relation does the Word have to healing our emotions? To answer these questions, we need to look at the ways God uses His Word to heal us: our praise of Him.

THE HEALING POWER OF PRAISE

One of the instructions we’ve received from the Lord says, “Rejoice in the Lord always” (Phil. 4:4). This is God’s Word. But how can it heal?

Suppose you are filled with anxiety, fear, discouragement, or grief. Your future is uncertain. You have no job. There is terminal illness in your family. Your children have turned away from the Lord and are estranged from you. You are in deep grief because of the loss of someone you love.

In the midst of your troubles, this word is sent from God to heal you: “Rejoice in the Lord always.”

You see, God is the only unchanging constant in our lives. When all else is gone—health, family, friends, money, position—God remains. “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday and today and forever” (Heb. 13:8). Isn’t that something to rejoice about? Not only is God present with us, but His Word also tells us that He loves us and nothing can separate us from that great unconditional love.

Another word from the Lord says, “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess. 5:16-18).

How can we apply this in a practical way? How about praying something like this:

“Lord, I feel terrible. I’m fearful, worried, lonely, rejected, grieving. [You put in your own words.] But Your Word assures me that nothing here on earth, whether past, present, or future, can break my relationship with You through Jesus Christ.

“Since I’m going to live forever, my time on earth is a very small dot on the pages of eternity. I can rejoice in You because You will never abandon me. You will never stop loving me. You hear my prayers when I cry to You just as You did for Your people long ago.

“You have given me Your Word, and I choose to obey it. I rejoice in You. I praise You. I thank You for who You are and for what You have done for me.”

Pray this prayer consistently, and I can practically guarantee there will eventually be a change in your emotions. But God knows we need help, both divine and human. And He provides that help.

GOD’S HOLY SPIRIT LIVES IN US

When we trusted Jesus Christ, He forgave our sins and called us to a new life of obedience to Him. He didn’t say, “Now that I’ve forgiven you, clean up your act. Do your best. Try harder. You’ll be able to change yourself.” How hopeless that would be!

The wonderful fact is that He knew we couldn’t change or heal ourselves in our own strength. He gave us Someone to help us. He gave us His Holy Spirit to take up residence in our hearts. He is the One who gives us new birth, makes us a new creation, and places us into the body of Christ. He is the One who makes us able to understand and apply Scripture (see 1 Cor. 2:12-13).

Romans 8 teaches us that the Spirit sets us free from slavery to sin. He is our new Master. He leads us in God’s ways. He gives us assurance that we are God’s children and can come into His presence with freedom and intimacy. He helps our weaknesses. He interprets our prayers, and He intercedes for us. Our part is to yield to His control, have our minds and hearts set on what He desires. Our part is to keep in step with His leading and trust Him to give us the ability to live to please God. He is the One who will work in our innermost being to give us the character of Jesus Christ, which is God’s ultimate purpose for saving us and adopting us into His family. The family of God, other believers, is God’s provision of the human help and companionship we need.

GOD’S FAMILY HELPS US HEAL

While I want to mention Christian friendship here as an instrument of God’s healing, we’ll postpone until chapter 18 an in-depth discussion. For now, it’s sufficient to say that friends and support groups are keys to emotional healing; they are effective because we humans were created to need each other.

The Bible tells us that God loves and accepts us, yet we need the tangible demonstration of love and acceptance from people we can see, hear, and touch. If one part of the Christian body suffers, every other part suffers with it. So if you are in difficulty, don’t be a loner. Reach out to Christian friends, support groups, or counselors, and allow them to help you. Give them the privilege and opportunity to pray for you.

A GODLY SELF-IMAGE ENCOURAGES EMOTIONAL HEALTH

God also uses another powerful tool to keep us emotionally healthy. When we accept Jesus Christ into our lives, God gives us a new self-image in Christ. This healthy view of ourselves is only possible when we stop believing what our emotions tell us and start believing what God says about us.

For example, our emotions may tell us: “I don’t think anyone has ever really loved me, so something in me must be unlovable. I feel like a loser. I don’t feel that I’m a good Christian. I don’t feel God’s love.”

In contrast, if we have a relationship with God because we have trusted Jesus Christ, this is what He wants us to hear: “I love you. You are now My child. I know all about you—past, present, and future—and I accept you. You are united with Christ. You are indwelt by the Holy Spirit. I will never abandon you, either in time or eternity.”

Faced with those opposing kinds of self-talk, who are you going to believe, your feelings or God’s Word? Not only must we believe God’s evaluation of us, but we need to reject what our own faulty experiences and emotions tell us. As we consistently reject the negative impressions that we have believed for years and accept our new status as those whom God loves as He loves His own Son, our self-images will change.

Self-image doesn’t change because we focus on pleasing ourselves, saying, “I’m doing something good for myself,” and following all the other suggestions that feed self-centeredness. It changes because we choose with our wills to believe God and accept His love for us.

Yes, God can heal our emotions. He is our Healer. He wants to heal us. He wants to free us from the crushing emotional obstacles that hinder our growth to maturity. The wonderful fact is that He has the power to heal, and He has provided everything necessary for our healing:

The cross of Christ,

His Word,

Rejoicing and praise,

The Holy Spirit,

His body, the church, and

A new self-image in Christ.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Caliste Burt, brain surgery is coming up soon.

Pray for Bill Warneke, chronic pain and depression

Remember Olivia, that she carries this miracle baby to full term.

WHAT RINGS YOUR BELL?

November 28, 2018

growth marks

What rings your bell?

I used to do church growth seminars.

The one thing I tell pastors is don’t jump on the band wagon and do what mega church next door is doing.

Don’t imitate another pastor’s style, whether it be how he preaches or what he wears (really).

And just because the person in your church that gives the most money, that doesn’t give them any rights to dictate anything.

I had a pastor that came to me because the largest giver in church didn’t like the way he would preach a sermon. So he gave him tapes of his favorite preacher and told him to preach like that guy did.

I told him to either burn the tapes or ask the guy to leave. Good news the guy repented and became a follower not a bulldozer.

I’ve mentioned this before, but the most important part of church is the sermon, not the music leader, or singing off the wall. It’s the pastor’s prayer life.

If as a pastor, you are where you need to be in praying and bible study and faithful in your pastoral duties. It is God who determines what type of church you will have. Be satisfied with that.

I’ve conducted exit interviews for various churches and I will tell you one thing..

You can’t please everyone. So be yourself.

Second most important thing I can tell you as a pastor, don’t sacrifice your family for the church.

Well that’s my rant for today, been awhile so I feel entitled.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for your pastor, before you criticize.

Confession

November 18, 2018

Ok, I’m going to perhaps stir up some controversy with this devotion. But hey that’s ok, remember the devotion about the long list and the short list. The short list is the stuff we will fight and die over, the long list is the bible stuff that a lot depends on your theology.

So, you don’t buy everything in the grocery store, just the items you need or like.

This devotion is like that.

Kingdom principles, which include that Jesus is the Lord of the earth, and the Lord’s prayer is a kingdom prayer. Versus, the theology that the Lord will not be Lord of the earth until his Millennial Reign, the Lord’s pray also fits in that scheme. But the Jews rejected their Messiah and his Kingdom and therefore contrary to a lot of the confess and claim it guys or the “aw shucks” we’ve always done it this way, or the Kingdom is now people.

I’m going against the grain.

When you became a Christian, God, through us accepting His Son, Jesus and all the redemptive work by the Cross. He (God) forgave us all our sins upon our conversion, past, present and future. Therefore, the Saved, Born Again, Evangelical, Bible Believing Christian never have to pray for forgiveness ever again.

To do so is to deny the work of Christ on the Cross, his death and resurrection and the forgiveness for ALL our sins.

So when Christians’ sin, (and we will sin) we don’t ask for forgiveness, we confess our sins and accept the forgiveness that was already given.

Sin, confession, repentance, not sin, ask for forgiveness. Because all was forgiven.

NO, this is not a free pass for the Christian to just sin and go on their merry way.

So, before you reject this traditional, habitual asking of forgiveness, think about this.

Jesus died for all your sins, you asking him to save you, covers all your sins. Asking for forgiveness means you doubt his work upon the cross and your salvation.

Confession means acceptance of forgiveness and the recognition of your Lord, and King, and all He did for you.

So yes, this is a Dispensationalist theology, some may have a problem with that theology. Although I know a great deal of Baptists out there preach the same thing.

But hey, it’s okay, short list versus long list.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Questions, comments, prayer requests to the email address please.

 Pray for Dave H, needs employment

Pray for Dave I, prostate problems.

Remember Gwen in your prayers, financial problems.

AH HAH!

November 9, 2018

 shout

“He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit (with Him)” (1 Cor. 6:17).

1 Corinthians 6:17 New International Version (NIV)

17 But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit.

  We are one spirit with the Lord Jesus by the one and only Holy Spirit.

  “I can always know when the Holy Spirit is leading me, because He ever occupies me with the Lord Jesus. True, He may have to call attention to my own condition, but if He does, He turns me to the Lord Jesus, not merely to convict me, but to relieve me.

Spiritual growth is the Holy Spirit engraving the Lord Jesus on a man’s heart, putting Him into his thoughts, his words, and his ways, just as the Law was engraved upon stones. It is not that there is no failure. A man who is seeking to make money does not always succeed; but everybody knows what his object is. Just so, the Lord Jesus Christ is the object of the believer’s life.

 The believer is not to clamor for the solution of perplexities or for intellectual mastery of divine mysteries. What knowledge he has in this realm is his because the Holy Spirit has declared it to him; and for the Spirit’s declaration he must wait.

 None of us is ever beyond the work of the Spirit in us. What amazes me the most is that after 42 years of pastoring and counseling, each day I’m blessed by some new nugget, a kernel, a different facet to the Word of God. It truly is new every day.

And all those “ah hah” moments, brought to you by The Holy Spirit.

  “He (the Holy Spirit) shall glorify Me” (John 16:14).

Remember Richard Perales, that he comes to saving knowledge, hopefully before the bottom falls out.

Pray for Barbara D, for strength and encouragement during her very long battle with cancer.

Pray for Danny F, it’s time to come home.

Pray for all the prodigals’ and give hope to the parents.

EUTYCHUS

October 30, 2018

Luke relates the peculiar tale of a young man who fell asleep during Paul’s sermon and tumbled three stories to his death. Fortunately, the anecdote has a cheerful ending as God used Paul to restore Eutychus back to life.

 While many preachers have likely used the story as a warning against falling asleep during their sermons, there is probably another explanation for the accident. Eutychus was a common slave name, so it’s possible the young man came to hear Paul after a long day of work. That would account for the apostle “talking until midnight” (Ac 20:7).

 Although he came to feed his soul by hearing the Word of God proclaimed, Eutychus’s body could not overcome his exhaustion. He serves as a reminder that our spiritual formation can be impeded by a lack of rest.

 Obviously it can suggest to us that we need rest to function at a capacity that allows us to serve the Lord. But the story also points to how we can be a blessing to others: by giving the gift of rest.

   Many of us have offered to help a fellow believer with other spiritual disciplines, such as prayer or Bible study. Yet how many of us have offered to help our neighbor get some much-needed sleep?

 For example, parents of newborns and infants are constantly in need of sleep and rest. We could offer to come by their home and watch their kids for a few hours on the weekend, giving them time to nap or simply enjoy some peace and quiet.

 Similarly, caretakers of invalid family members have work that keeps them in a constant state of busyness. By offering to spend time each week caring for their loved one while they rest, we can help carry their burden.

 Many of us could also open our homes, especially on the weekends, to college students who need a quiet place away from the noise and distraction of campus life and roommates.

Do you like to cook, offer a meal to a busy single working mom. Mow the pastor’s lawn.

To many kids are over tired, between school, homework, karate classes, swimming classed, scouting or 4H, hobbies. When do the kids get a rest? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen moms conked out, dead to the world asleep in the church parking lot, picking their kids up from daycare or choir practice.

 To whom in your congregation or neighborhood can you give the gift of rest? Imagine the impact you could have by helping the “Eutychus” in your life.

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

Pray for Jimmie C, 34, and they just discovered a brain tumor, will decide tomorrow about surgery.

 

Remember Randi, she is taking her citizenship test on Thursday.

 

Pray for Lisa, trying to get her husband to come to marriage counseling, she’s tired that she’s doing “all the lifting.”

 

Pray for Connie, her son is having legal problems.

 

Pray for Veronica, ever since her divorce she has been “the wild child” everyone thought it was just a phase, but she is neglecting her kids, ruining her health and her first scare with the law.

SO SWEET

October 29, 2018

One of the most beautiful words in the human vocabulary is forgiveness. How much pain and unhappy consequences could be avoided if we all learned the meaning of this word. The King David shared some of the emotion he personally experienced after he asked God to “wash away my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin” (Psalm 51:2, NIV). “Blessed is he whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit” (Psalm 32:1,2, NIV). In one bold stroke, forgiveness obliterates the past and permits us to enter the land of new beginnings.

God’s forgiveness is not just a casual statement; it is the complete blotting out of all the dirt and degradation of our past, present, and future. The only reason our sins can be forgiven is that, on the Cross, Jesus Christ paid their full penalty. (But) only as we bow at the foot of the Cross, in contrition, confession, and repentance, can we find forgiveness.

 The Basis for Forgiveness: 1. Reconciliation. When God forgives, there is an immediate and complete change in relationship. Instead of hostility, there is love and acceptance. Instead of enmity, there is friendship. “God . . .reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them” (2 Corinthians 5:19, NIV).

  1. Purification. The very essence of forgiveness is being restored to our original standing before God. “Purge me. . .and I shall be clean; wash me and I shall be whiter than snow” (Psalm 51:7, KJV). (See also 1 John 1:9, Romans 4:7.) Another aspect of purification is that God forgets our sin when He forgives it. “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more” (Hebrews 8:12, NIV). (See also Psalm 103:12; Isaiah 38:17.)

  2. Remittance. Forgiveness results in God’s dropping the charges against us. He will not enforce judgment because of our sins. Jesus said to the woman taken in adultery,” . . . Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more” (John 8:11, KJV). (See also Romans 8:1.) What a great privilege the counselor has in sharing the joy of God’s forgiveness!

  3. It doesn’t matter what you have done, God’s love is so amazing that He will forgive anything you’ve done. You can’t claim to be worse than anyone else. the very fact that you want to have God’s forgiveness is His way of showing all you have to do is ask.

GOD BLESS FROM SCUMLIKEUSCHURCH@GMAIL.COM