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Showing posts from November, 2008

'tis the season!

I'm not anti-buying stuff, nor am I anti-Walmart, as most of you are aware. I even braved the throngs of people this morning at the local shopping malls with 4 kids in tow & my wife by my side. I am though bothered by tragedies like the one you may have heard about this morning. Check out this headline.

Worker dies at Long Island Wal-Mart after being trampled in Black Friday stampede, click here to read the story.


It's unfortunate that we as humans, not just Americans, get so excited about stuff. 'Tis the season I guess. I like stuff, I enjoy it and appreciate the comforts that come along with it. But I'm not in love with it & I don't have to have it. During this time of year, the monster of more seems to awaken within us. Don't let the monster within overshadow the real reason for this season, Jesus Christ! Jesus takes away our stuff and gives us what we really need, not the discounted flat screen at Walmart. Joy, Hope, Love & Forgiveness. …

He Still Opens Doors

Great devotional that is a reminder to each of us that our God still works miracles!

Today's Scripture

“I know all the things you do, and I have opened a door for you that no one can close” (Revelation 3:8, NLT).

Today's Word from Joel and Victoria
God is ready to present you with new opportunities. He wants to open new doors before you. It doesn’t matter what’s happening in the world around you, in the economy, the housing industry, or with job reports; God’s Word still remains true. He rewards the people who seek after Him. He’s not the least bit concerned about how He’s going to supply your needs. There is no recession in heaven. He has His eye on you, and He still opens doors that no one can shut! In an instant, He can bring the right people into your life, the right opportunities, and the right resources to take you to a new level.

But in order to go to a higher level, you have to have a higher way of thinking. You can’t stay focused on what’s happening in the natural nor all…

What are you planting?

Are you planting the seeds of unforgiveness & bitterness or the seeds of grace & mercy? Here is a story that I shared at the close of today's message that will help you consider what to plant today!

The Daffodil Principle


Several times my daughter had telephoned, "Mother, you must come and see the daffodils before they are over." Finally, I promised, reluctantly. I’d driven only a few miles when the road was covered with wet, gray fog. As I slowly executed the hazardous mountain turns, I was praying to reach the turnoff. When I finally walked into Carolyn’s house, I said, "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! There is nothing that I want to see bad enough to drive another inch in this weather!" "I’ll drive," Carolyn offered. In a few minutes, we were back on the Mountain road heading over the top. 
We parked in a small parking lot adjoining a little stone church. I saw a pine needle covered path, and an inconspicuous, hand lettered sign "Daf…

Potluck, Part 4- Baggage

Today was an awesome day in the life of our church! We witnessed hundreds of people in our church family take giant steps in their walk with Christ as they extended forgiveness to someone who has harmed them. We called today's message, "baggage." We all have it! It's is the sin of offense. It is when we carry unforgiveness towards someone that has wronged us. John Bevere calls it, "the bait of Satan." Today we made decisions to not take the bait, to shed the baggage and to walk in freedom & forgiveness. Here are the notes:

ARE YOU AWARE OF YOUR BAGGAGE.
"Therefore I will not keep silent; I will speak out in the anguish of my spirit…. Job 7:11

Give a name to your baggage: THE SIN OF OFFENSE
 “Then He said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come...”
Luke 17:1 (NKJV)

The Greek word for offend in Luke 17:1 comes from the word skandalon. This word originally referred to the part of a trap to which the bait was attached. In …

Responding To The Silent Treatment

I just received this e-mail from Gary Chapman, the author of the book, "The Five Love Languages." He has some great resources online that you can check out at www.fivelovelanguages.com. Check out the article below!

Jill had told her husband that she wanted to spend a weekend at the beach with the girls who work in her office. Her husband Mike had responded with silence. No explosions, no loud words, no arguing, no nothing - just silence. He had been silent four days when Jill talked with me.

Reasons
When your spouse gives you the “silent treatment” there are always reasons; usually a historical reason, an emotional reason and a contemporary reason. The contemporary reason is that something has just happened that the spouse finds objectionable. For Mike, it was Jill’s announcement that she was going to spend the weekend at the beach with her girl friends.

The emotional reason was that Mike did not feel secure in Jill’s love. He reasoned, “If she loved me she would want to be w…

Last Week's Message: Potluck, Part 3- BitterSweet

Last weekend we looked at a story found in Exodus 15. The context is that Moses had just led the Israelites out of Egypt and they were miraculously on their way to the promised land. They had traveled for 3 days without water and finally came upon some water which they could not drink because it was bitter. Here's the story...
Exodus 15:23, "Now when they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for
they were bitter. Therefore the name of it was called Marah. (which is the Hebrew word for bitterness) 24 And the people complained against Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” 25 So he cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a tree. When he cast it into the waters, the waters were made sweet. There He made a statute and an ordinance for them. And there He tested them, 26 and said, “If you diligently heed the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the disease…

Offer Continually

I received this devotional in my inbox today and thought that it was great. It's a great reminder of how we need to live our lives everyday!

Today's Scripture
Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming our allegiance to his name” (Hebrews 13:15, NLT).

Today's Word from Joel and Victoria
Praise is more than just singing songs in church on Sunday. In fact, praise isn’t even about singing songs! Praise is a heart attitude. Praise in your heart prompts singing songs, but it can also be manifest in many different ways. Your words, your actions, your daily life are all ways you give Him praise. Like the verse says, when your actions or words declare your allegiance to His Name, that’s giving God praise. How do your actions declare your allegiance to Him? By simply obeying His Word. When we continually follow His commands, even when it’s uncomfortable, even when we don’t feel like it, even when we are tired, that’s offering a sacrific…

Tomorrow's Message: Potluck, Part 2- Fearless

Tomorrow during our weekend services, we're going to tackle an issue that most of us deal with on a daily basis. That issue is the feeling that you are stuck. Maybe you are stuck in a bad relationship, bad job, bad habit, sin... the list goes on. The question is this, "If I'm stuck, how do I get unstuck?" Here are 3 things you must do!

YOU MUST WANT TO BE UNSTUCK
JOHN 5:1 Afterward Jesus returned to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish holy days. 2 Inside the city, near the Sheep Gate, was the pool of Bethesda,[a] with five covered porches. 3 Crowds of sick people—blind, lame, or paralyzed—lay on the porches.[b] 5 One of the men lying there had been sick for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him and knew he had been ill for a long time, he asked him, “Would you like to get well?”
Jesus asked this guy a seemingly rude question. He was sick for almost 4 decades! Jesus did so because He knew that we all have a tendency to grow comfortable in our circumstance & c…

What I learned this weekend...

This weekend we had Robert Cameron from Wave Church in Virginia Beach, Va. Robert oversees wave network, an association of churches that connect in faith and vision with Wave Church. On Saturday he did our fall leadership summit for all of our awesome volunteers. He talked about building a church culture that is excellent and pleasing to God. Here are some of the thoughts that he shared with us.

Building a church culture of excellence.
1. Serve the Lord with Gladness- Not with madness.
2. Honor- Speak right to one another. Prefer one another. (Proverbs 15, Romans 12:10)
3. Favor- Wherever their is favor there is life. Jesus had favor with both God and man and we need the same. (Psalm 35)
4. We need to have a good report- No one remembers the names of the spies who came back with a negative report even though their names are listed. We do remember Joshua & Caleb as being the men who came back with the good report.
5. What you respect, you will attract- Respect positive …

Activate Strength

Here is a great devotional that I received from Joel Osteen ministries called, "Activate Strength." I challenge you to do that very thing today!

Today's Scripture
“But as for me, I am filled with power— with the Spirit of the Lord. I am filled with justice and strength…” (Micah 3:8).

Micah knew how to encourage himself in the Lord. He understood how to draw courage and purpose into his life. He realized the power in His words and knew that speaking the truth is the most effective way to prepare him to accomplish all God has in store.

Did you know that we activate the blessing of God’s favor by speaking it over our own lives? Romans 10:9-10 tells us that salvation comes when we believe and then declare what we believe. God’s truth is established when we believe and declare it! (Job 22:28). When we declare God’s Word, we invite Him to do what He alone can in our lives.

Your tasks today may not be anything like Micah’s, but we all need God’s help. Activate His strength by dec…