Preaching Jesus

2 Corinthians 4:5-7 – You see, we don’t go around preaching about ourselves. We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus’ sake. [6] For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. [7] We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.

In the these verse the Apostle Paul made it clear what his message was when he preached – Jesus. He did not preach about himself, nor did he say he was a great man who performed miracles. Everything Paul did pointed to Jesus.

Paul also made it clear where the power to perform miracles came from. The power was from God. He stressed that as humans we are fragile and imperfect, but this is what God needs to make his power known. Fragile human vessels that are willing to be used.

God wants us as Christians to be available for His use. He wants to fill us with His love, His light and His power to spread it to those around us. He wants us to be witnesses to His great love and mercy. He wants us to tell people of what we are seen, heard and experienced of Jesus and His salvation.

It is my hope and prayer that today you will let your light shine for Jesus as it says in Matthew 5:16. If we spend time with God in prayer and His Word, our lights will shine brightly and impact the people around us for God’s Kingdom.

God Bless,
Dave

Lead by serving

Mark 10:43-45 – But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, [44] and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. [45] For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Jesus wants us to be different in the way we lead. He doesn’t want us to lord our power over others. He wants us to be servant leaders. Verse 44 tells us that our servant leadership actually looks like being a slave. Over the years I have found the best leaders are humble in attitude and are willing to serve in any capacity to make sure things are done.

I remember in my first job in retail, one of our regional store managers would say we need some shopping trolleys from outside brought in, he would put on a raincoat and come out with us to bring them in. I have never forgotten it. He was were still in charge, but he did what was needed to make things work well. I have seen this same type of leadership in church circles. Highly trained Pastors of big churches sweeping the front steps of the church to make it look nice for people coming in.

Serving Jesus is about having a humble attitude and doing what needs to be done. There is only room for one Lord, and that title belongs to Jesus! The rest of us are His humble servants.

God Bless,
Dave

Be filled with Christ

Colossians 3:16-17 – Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. [17] And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.

In these verses there are three simple but powerful thoughts.

1. Be filled with Christ – Verse 16 says to let the message of Christ fill your life. The message of Christ’s love, forgiveness, salvation, mission and Lordship is huge. Ponder it. Meditate on it. Surrender to it.

2. Encourage one another – The second part of verse 16 tells us to encourage your Christian brothers and sisters. We do this as we teach and counsel one another, and when we come together in fellowship.

3. Represent Christ – Verse 17 reminds us to be Christ’s representative in all we do and say. This is about living a life worthy of Christ and bringing honour to God. Matthew 5:16 reminds us to let our lights shine. Represent Christ and your faith well each day.

When we do these things it will show that we are filled with Christ. Then His light and His love with overflow and touch the people around us. And when we do this, it brings glory to God.

God Bless,
Dave

Formed and reformed

Isaiah 64:8 NLT – And yet, O LORD, you are our Father. We are the clay, and you are the potter. We all are formed by your hand.

The Bible tells us that God formed us in our mothers womb. He knit us together exactly how He wants us to be, so we can do all He needs us to do.

The Bible also talks about God reforming us to be more like Christ. When we come to Jesus and are born again, we are slowly transformed in to the image of Christ.

Here are some verses to reflect on for today.

Psalm 139:13 – You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.

Genesis 1:27 – So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

Romans 5:12 –¬†When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned.

John 3:3 – Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”

John 1:12-13 NLT – But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. [13] They are reborn-not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.

2 Corinthians 3:16-18 – But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. [17] For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. [18] So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord-who is the Spirit-makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.

So we are initially formed by God in His image, but unfortunately the sin in this world effects us. Then after we are born again, we are reformed.

God Bless,
Dave

Serving God where you are

Over the years I have been asked if I enjoy serving God in full time paid ministry or working in secular work more. My answer surprises most Christians.

The reason is I follow Colossians 3:23-24. It says, “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. [24] Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward, and that the Master you are serving is Christ.”

My heart is to work willingly at whatever I do. If am working at the hospital ordering medical equipment, working as the Pastor of the church, or doing some type of volunteer work, I treat them all the same. I think of myself as serving Jesus.

When I think of my work as serving Jesus it takes away the barrier between spiritual and secular. I am there serving Jesus, doing my work with a good attitude and trying to honour God in what I do.

So to answer the question – I enjoy/ed both. I enjoy working in “secular work” at the hospital and I enjoyed working in “spiritual work” as a Pastor.

The key for me, is to serve God where you are right now. And remember that ultimately He is the one who will reward you for your work for Him.

God Bless,
Dave

Trust in the Lord in 2019

Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT –¬†Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. [6] Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.

Today’s verses of the day in my Bible app were Proverbs 3:5-6. I can’t think of a better option than to trust in the Lord and seek His will for a new year. God knows our future and He knows us, so we can trust Him. These verses tell us that if we trust in the Lord and seek His will, He will show us the right path to take. This is in the small things and the big things. A great thought for 2019.

Dear God, help me to trust in You with all of my heart and seek Your will in all I do in 2019. I pray that as I follow Jesus and walk in Your ways, that You will show me the right paths to take. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

A prayer of David

David was described by God as a man after His own heart. That is very high praise considering David did some pretty bad things in his life.

I think one of the keys to David’s life is prayer. He was always in communication with God. He praised God in the goods times and cried out for help in the bad.

In Psalm 86 we see an example of one of David’s prayers…

Psalm 86:1-7 NLT – Bend down, O LORD, and hear my prayer; answer me, for I need your help. [2] Protect me, for I am devoted to you. Save me, for I serve you and trust you. You are my God. [3] Be merciful to me, O Lord, for I am calling on you constantly. [4] Give me happiness, O Lord, for I give myself to you. [5] O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help. [6] Listen closely to my prayer, O LORD; hear my urgent cry. [7] I will call to you whenever I’m in trouble, and you will answer me.

In this prayer David poured out his heart to God. He asked for God to hear his prayer, and for protection, salvation, mercy, happiness and help. He also devoted himself to God and said that he served and trusted God.

David truly was a man after God’s own heart. One of the keys is his prayer life. What a great example for us today.

God Bless,
Dave