The Miracle of the Christmas Message

Many years ago, God spoke to His people through the prophets to reveal Himself to us. He wants us to know Him, to love Him and to worship Him.  God had been speaking, but people weren’t getting the message. They didn’t understand God’s heart, nor did they understand God’s plan. So, God sent His Son to bring His message to us.  In the Lord Jesus Christ, God revealed Himself directly to us.  This is the miracle of the Christmas message – the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the living, divine Son of God. He did more than just proclaim God’s message – He is God’s message!  Jesus came to reveal God, to make Him known to us in ways that we can understand.

Jesus declares in John 10:30  “I and the Father are one.”  The miracle of the message is not just in the fact that God speaks to us today through His Son, but that the message has the power to transform our lives. Christmas is the celebration of the greatest message ever proclaimed. God is with us. God came near so that we could draw near to Him. Jesus came to proclaim God’s message that we can be set free from sin’s stronghold on our lives and we don’t have to live as prisoners to guilt and regret.  God did that because He wanted us to know how very much He loves us. He wanted us to know that He created us for a reason – that we might know and love Him.  Jesus was the Word that became as flesh and lived among us. If you want to know what God is like, look to Jesus!

Even today, God is speaking His message through visions and dreams, through natural events, and many other means, but can you hear and understand Him?  In the midst of life’s betrayals and bitter messages He whispers, “bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.”  (Luke 6:28) In the midst of life’s messages of joy and celebration He shouts, “Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad!” (Psalm 118:24).

The miracle of Christmas is the miracle of the message – God loves you and me! He sent His Son who is the greatest gift that you can ever receive.  For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39).

Believe the miracle of the Christmas message that God does love you; that Jesus came to this earth and paid the price of redemption for you; and that God does, and will, speak to you and your life will never be the same!  Merry Christmas!

 

 

The Miracle of the Moment

Did you know that there are only 11 days until Christmas? That means there are approximately 264 hours until we celebrate the birth of Christ.  That translates into approximately 15,840 minutes left to get done all the things we need to do before Christmas arrives.  As we begin the Christmas celebration, I want us to recognize the significance of one moment in time because timing is important.  One minute can make a difference if you arrive at your departure gate and see the plane you were supposed to be on pushing away from the gate; or you wake up late for work and discover that there was a fatal car crash on the road ahead of you that you missed only because you left a few minutes later than normal.

Galatians 4:4 says, “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law.”  God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to this earth at just the right time.  That represents the miracle of the moment.  You were saved at the right moment and God will meet your need at the right moment.  Our concept of time is much different than God’s concept of time because heaven has no time restraints.  We worry about our problems and think that God has forgotten all about us only to find out that just at the right moment, our way of escape suddenly appears.  We have to recognize that God is in control and if we get that down in our spirit, we can enjoy our lives knowing that God will provide what we need exactly when we need it.

Don’t get so caught up in this holiday season that you miss the miracle of the moment.  Remember who we are celebrating and the reason He came to this earth.  Remember how one moment in time has changed your life and given you a destiny that you have yet to fulfill.  We love to plan what we are going to do today, tomorrow, next week and next month forgetting that nothing will come to pass without the grace of God upon our lives.  God has plans for you and I encourage you to make sure that your plans line up with God’s will for your life.  Look for the miracle that God has planned for you this day and thank Him for it.

Something to think about; there are 3 things in life that once gone will never come back – time, words and opportunity. Make the most of each one so that you will have no regrets.  Each one could contain a miracle just for you.

 

 

Yield!

A reasonable and gracious way of preventing a head-on collision with others is to yield and allow the other person the right of way and avoid interpersonal head on collisions.  The Bible tells Christians to submit to one another and that is not always easy to do because it goes against our natural instinct. We live in a survivor mentality; we try to outplay, outwit, out last each other; not to submit to one another. However, learning to submit is just as important as any other discipline that we train ourselves to do.

Submission is an attitude of the heart that keeps a believer broken before God. Brokenness allows a believer to be flexible, teachable and humble before God. When we are broken, we see the fraility of human strength and come to grips with the reality that we can do nothing in our own strength. Then, new strength emerges that God uses mightily. God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. Do not fear brokenness, for it may be the missing ingredient to a life that emerges with a new kind of strength and experience you never knew before.

Submitting to God is the most important discipline that you will ever learn because if you are submitted to God, you will be obedient to Him and His Word and your life will honor God which is the goal of every Believer.  You become an instrument for God to use after you have been broken and know how important it is to yield to Him.  We are not fit for the Master’s use until we have been broken and reshaped through the growth experiences we go through.  You see God knows just how much and how far to stretch you; He knows your breaking point; therefore, He will always give you a way of escape.

And, when it comes to working with other believers, you have to do what you can do and let others do what they can do. You have to understand there are people that can do things you are incapable of doing. Don’t fight it, embrace it. When you try to do what others can do, you enter into competition with them. Believers who compete with others become frustrated and unfulfilled, because they lose grace. The more people stay banded together in unity, the stronger they will become. From that strength, comes synergy: the interaction of two or more forces with a combined effort that is greater than the sum of the individual parts. Remember, one can chase 1000; two 10,000.

Allow God to give you a chiropractic adjustment today. Totally abandon yourself to His will. God has something specific and special for you to do in His kingdom. Ask God to reveal to you what your part is in His master plan. Find your place and fulfill it, but remember it all starts when you are able to ‘yield.’

 

 

The Hidden Power of Serving

Take ten chickens, any ten. Put them in a pen together, and spread a little chicken feed. Soon you will witness something an amazing. In a matter of minutes, the chickens, previously strangers, will form a hierarchy based on dominance or, in everyday language, they will establish a Pecking Order.  Instinctively, they will determine, through a series of skirmishes, who the Number One chicken will be; then the Number Two; the Number Three; all the way down to the unlucky Number Ten chicken. Much is at stake in this dance of domination. Chicken Number One pecks at and intimidates Chicken Number Two, without experiencing any kind of retribution from Chicken Number Two. Chicken Number Two will take it from Chicken Number One but will turn around and peck away at Chicken Number Three, who will in turn, take out its frustration on Chicken Number Four. The Pecking Order continues all the way down to Chicken Number Ten, who, needless to say, has a pretty miserable life, he is pecked, but has no one to peck.

We all have the tendency to look at others in terms of their profession, education, wardrobe, cars, homes, and subconsciously we fit them into the Pecking Order.
So, what’s the problem? It’s natural. Every time the disciples tried to set up a Pecking Order, Jesus rebuked them and taught them they needed to be servants. “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.” (Mark 9:35).  A true leader serves those under his responsibility and does not cause undue hardship to them by exercising his authority over them, and by revelation and grace he helps bring out their individual gifts and talents.

Refrain from indulging in the pecking order and see every person as someone who Jesus Christ has died for and it doesn’t matter what they have been called to do or what their position is in our society, we all have a plan and purpose to achieve.  God loves you as much as he loves me and he loves me as much as he loves you.  One is not greater than the other regardless if you are a street cleaner or a pastor of a 10,000 member congregation.  God doesn’t favor any one more than the other.  We are all important to him and the same blood that has saved you has also saved the worst sinner.

Do you want to be great in the eyes of God?  Serve mankind.  Jesus told us that God will honor those who serve (John 12:26).  Jesus Christ is sitting at the right hand of his Father because he came to this earth not only to save but to serve.  Follow the Lord’s example and don’t let opportunities to serve pass you by and may the God of all peace reward you and bless you for having a servant heart.

 

 

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart

Well, it’s that time of the year when we come together as a family to reflect on the blessings of God. But I suppose that there are some who believe that in our society today, there is very little to be thankful for but they are wrong.  Every person who knows Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior has a lot to be thankful for.  God is good and His mercies endure forever, and it is because of His mercy that we have been delivered and set free from the enemy of our soul.  The blood of Jesus has redeemed those who are called by His name, and just in case you neglect to tell Jesus on your own how grateful you are, a day has been designated for that very thing.

Recognize how truly blessed you are.  Reflect on how God has provided what you needed when you needed it.  You might not have everything you want but your basic needs are being met.  Focus on the positive in your life.  Everyone faces challenges but Jesus has promised to never leave us alone, and we are never alone when we have to face trials and tribulations.  God is bigger than our problems and there is nothing too hard for Him.  If God doesn’t calm your storm, His grace is sufficient to give you peace  in the midst of the storm and remember that His eye is always upon the sparrow.

God is faithful and this is a wonderful time to stop and give thanks.  Give thanks for your family and friends; for your job and for the home that keeps you and your family safe.  Give thanks for your health.  Give thanks that what the enemy meant for evil God has turned it around for your good and above all, give thanks for your salvation.  You didn’t choose God but God chose you.  He called you by name and saved you and gave you eternal life.  Give thanks that you can trust God and that He is faithful.

Live with a thankful spirit and daily give thanks for the goodness of God in your life.  You can do nothing without Him, but with Him all things are possible.  What shall you render unto God for all of His benefits toward you? Thankfulness is a good start!

 

 

 

1 Thessalonians 5:18 “in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God

                                       in Christ Jesus for you.”

Use Your Keys

Do you realize that God has given every believer the keys to unlock or remove every hinderance they encounter on this earth?  The keys are there to heal you, to promote you and to give you the power to overcome life’s challenges.  Unfortunately, many Christians are not taught that they have the power and the authority to speak to the mountain standing in their way and it will move.  At the name of Jesus every knee will bow and there is nothing you will every face that is stronger than the power of God.

When you are weak God will show himself strong in your life if you submit to his will and his way.  The grace of God is more than sufficient for you and it will work in your life in such a way that you will see yourself changing and becoming more and more like the Lord.  But being an overcomer takes consecration; it takes humility and it will involve brokenness.  When you are broken you totally submit yourself to God and you trust him completely.  His will becomes your will and you press on and you press through the trials in your life.  Satan comes to steal, kill and destroy but Jesus came to give you life and life more abundantly.

If you want to go further than you could ever dream, put your hand into the hands of the Lord and walk with him every day of your life.  Use your keys of faith and speak with authority to every hinderance standing in your way.  Renew your mind so that you have the mind of Christ and nothing will be able to stop you.  God loves you and he wants only the best for you.  Trust him at all times and never give up.  The keys you possess will unlock every door.  Don’t perish due to a lack of knowledge.  Take the word of God and guard it in your heart and you will possess all that God has for you.

Obedience to God is Unconditional

Obedience to God is unconditional; obedience to man is conditional. God expects us to obey Him in all things and at all times.  The Bible tells us that obedience is better than sacrifice.  What some people do not realize is that when we disobey God we are in rebellion and it is a spirit of witchcraft.  This is a serious matter and should not be taken lightly. Our love for God should cause us to deny ourselves ,and when you deny yourself you’re denying your mind, your emotions, and your will to obey the inner spirit man in every area of life.

Obedience to God includes doing what God has told you to do even if it looks impossible.  When God spoke to Noah and told him to build an ark, it took an enormous amount of faith for Noah to obey but if your heart is set on doing the will of God, God will give you the grace to perform.  There is an anointing that comes upon you to avoid trying to logically make sense out of what God said, but rather focus on the task at hand.  Your mind will play games with you and try to make you think that you didn’t really hear from God, but do not be deceived.  Rely on the Holy Spirit to guide you in the path you should take.

An unconditional surrender to God is the mark of a mature Believer.  Jesus Christ surrendered to the will of God even though it cost him his life.  Believers must follow that example and take up their cross if they are to be a disciple of Jesus.  You might have to let go of something, but anything that you give up will be given back to you in greater measure.  Therefore, set your mind and heart to obey God.  Your total submission to God will not go unnoticed but will be rewarded in this life and in the life to come.

Are You Planted or Transient?

“Those who are planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God.  They shall still bear fruit in old age; they shall be fresh and flourishing.” (Psalm 92:13-14).

God wants you to be planted in a local church; He does not want you to be transient and move from place to place. God intends to grow you and the local church is where are hearts are challenged to rise up to new levels in Christ.  Statistics from Barna Research Group state that 11% of people who claim to attend church at least once a month plan to change their place of worship in the coming year. That represents 15 million people changing their church homes in the next 12 months.  Evidently, many people are not devoted to their current church and feel it is okay to move from place to place but what will this accomplish?  God’s desire is that every Believer get plugged into a local church body, support it in every way they can and grow in their faith and in  their relationship to the Lord.

God’s blessings will be upon those who are planted, who don’t move from place to place. The spirit of God is there to guide you and help you to recognize your place in the body of Christ and use your gifts and  talents to minister to others around you.  They need you and you need them.  The church is made up of many members but all belong to one body with Jesus Christ as the head with all authority.  If you are still searching for the place God has for you, ask Him to lead you to the one place where you belong.  Once there, allow your roots to go down deep and your walk with the Lord will be amazing.

 

 

 

The Fire of God

God has given the church a powerful gift, a supernatual gift to fulfill His will upon the earth.  It was first received on the day of Pentacost and because of it the early church was able to convert thousands to Christ and perform miraculous signs and wonders.

God’s gift of the Holy Spirit enabled the church to overcome the resistance against them and the evil of that day.  Believers were persecuted and killed because of their faith but the Holy Spirit caused them to keep moving forward and do the will of God.  That same gift and that same power enables Believers today to rise above the many problems of this world and live in victory and peace.  Ebola is causing fear among many people but Christians have something within them that makes them different from the rest of the world.  People are looking for an answer that the government does not have.  God is the answer and if you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, you have this free gift from God available to you.  The spirit of God will enable you to hear the voice of God who will lead you, protect you, provide for you and take away all fear.  God is bigger than any problem this world has and without God, people will live in fear and do all kinds of evil things while the children of God will respond to the challenges of life with boldness.

God wants Believers to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit immediately after salvation and all you need is a repentant heart.  Once received, the Holy Spirit or fire of God, will allow you to be used by God to further His kingdom on this earth.  You will act differently.  You will think at a higher level than before and you will accomplish much more than you could ever do on your own.  Don’t live without this gift.  If you do not already possess it, ask God for it for this is His will for your life.

Spiritual Authority

“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities.  For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.  Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.” (Romans 13:1-2)

God is the author of creation, including man, and all things are to function the way He designed them because He is the ultimate authority.  To man He gave the authority to subdue the animals and birds of the air and Believers are to submit to the authority of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Every one has to submit to authority but some people in authority allow their pride to  take over and they abuse their position of authority.  Pride was the original sin.  Lucifer became self-centered and wanted to exalt himself above God and was therefore cast out of heaven.  On the other hand, some people have a problem submitting to authority.  They consider themselves better than the person above them so they rebel which leads to their own demise.  Miriam got leprosy after Aaran and she began to think that they were just as important and just as holy as Moses. You must remember that when you rebel against authority, you are rebelling against the author of authority – God.

Authority was established for our benefit and it is not to be taken lightly.  The Bible commands us to submit to the authority of man or suffer the consequences.  It works the same way in the kingdom of God.  There are consequences to disobedience because obedience in the kingdom of God is not optional – it is mandatory. God demands uncompromised allegiance to Him.  Believers are to be humble, open and teachable like small children if we want to become great in the kingdom of heaven.

The kingdom of God is the realm in which Jesus Christ rules and reigns in your heart.  He is your Lord and how well you submit to the authority of Christ will determine how well you learn and grow within the kingdom of God.  If you want God’s best in your life, do His will and submit to the authority in your life and this will honor God and He will open the windows of heaven over you and pour out a blessing on you such that you will not be able to contain.