On Wings Of Eagles

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Friday, March 31, 2017

To busy to pray?

Daniel 6:10 (ESV)
When Daniel knew that the document had been signed, he went to his house where he had windows in his upper chamber open toward Jerusalem. He got down on his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously.

This week has been one of those weeks that there wasn’t enough time to get done all that had to. As the week ends I was so busy I feel exhausted.

Let's consider Daniel for a moment. Here is one of the great rulers of the Persian empire, in charge of the King's affairs and of the affairs of the entire government. Now if anyone is really busy -- it's Daniel! But in spite of all this, he makes it a point to set himself apart from the world and pray three times a day.

This really got me. I mean, how busy are we -- really? And what are we really doing?

Think about this, if we are neglecting the important things of God, we're simply doing more than God intended! Let's keep our priorities in order! Let's be a people of prayer!

Dear Lord, help us to not get our self so busy that we forget the things that are important. Help us never forget to get on our knees and pray. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Never early, never late.

2 Corinthians 5:7 (ESV)
For we walk by faith, not by sight.

When Corrie Ten Boom (author of "The Hiding Place") was a little girl in Holland, her first realization of death came after a visit to the home of a neighbor who had died. It suddenly impressed her that someday her parents could also die. When Corrie went to her father about her concern, he comforted her with these words of wisdom. "Corrie, when you and I go to Amsterdam, when do I give you your ticket?" "Why, just before we get on the train," she replied. "Exactly," her father said, "and our wise Father in heaven knows when we're going to need things too. Don't run out ahead of Him, Corrie. When the time comes that some of us will have to die, you will look into your heart and find the strength you need--just in time."

Many of us don't think about it but we, as humans have such a problem with fear -- fear that God won't come through when we're in need. We want insurance -- insurance for our cars, insurance for our houses, for our health and for our lives. We want to be insured that we’ll be okay if something happens. It has become our way of life in the western world.

I’m not saying go and cancel all your insurance plans -- but at the same time, God wants us to trust in His provision in our time of need! In our time here in Israel, we have truly learned the meaning of "never early, never late". Every single day since we have been here our faith has been tested and time and time again, God has provided for us in ways we could never conceive -- physically, spiritually, emotionally, financially and in every other way -- never early, never late -- always just when we need it.

We need not fear anything that is before us. God will give us the strength to endure anything that comes our way. He has our ticket!

Dear Lord, help us to put our trust completely in You. Thank You that You are never early or never late. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The flow of God's love

John 7:37-38 (ESV)
On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.

An estimated 500,000 tons of water go over Niagara Falls every minute. On March 29, 1948, the falls suddenly stopped. Those who lived near enough heard the overwhelming silence, and immediately they thought it was a sign – the end of the world had come! However, after thirty hours had passed – the flow of water resumed.

What happened? Heavy winds had set the ice fields of Lake Erie in motion and tons of ice had jammed the Niagara River entrance near Buffalo. The ice blocked the flow of water until finally, there was a shift in the blockage and the river began flowing again.

The river had stopped flowing because of ice.

If we really want the flow of God’s love, peace, joy, and anointing in our lives – we cannot allow our hearts to become like ice. If we do, His life-giving current will stop.

Let the Lord search your heart for those areas where the ice has built up and needs to thaw out. He will show you where they are if you ask. Our hearts should be burning for Him, so let the river flow.... once again.

Dear Lord, help us search our heart today and see the areas that need to thaw so Your love can flow through us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.  

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Don't be a chicken.

Isaiah 40:31 (ESV)
But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.

First of all I must say I do love my chickens.

Here is a story of a farmer the while walking through the forest one day, he found a young eagle who had apparently fallen out of his nest. He took it home and put it in his barnyard with his chickens and there it stayed for years. It wasn't long before the little eagle learned to eat and behave like the chickens.

One day a naturalist passed by the farm and saw the eagle confined in the barnyard with the chickens. When he inquired about this strange sight, the farmer told the man his story. "Unfortunately," said the farmer, "the poor little guy just never learned to fly." "Still," the naturalist sighed, "he has the heart of an eagle and can surely be taught. Will you allow me to work with him?" The farmer agreed, but with much disbelief.

The naturalist picked up the eagle and lifted him toward the sky and said, "You belong to the sky and not to the earth. Stretch forth your wings and fly." The eagle, however, was confused. He did not know who he was, and seeing the chickens eating their food, he jumped down to be with them again. The naturalist took the bird to the roof of the house and urged him again, saying, "You are an eagle. Stretch forth your wings and fly." But the eagle was afraid and jumped down once again to be with his chicken friends. Finally the naturalist took the eagle out of the barnyard to a high mountain. There he held the king of the birds high above him and encouraged him again, saying, "You are an eagle. You belong to the sky. Stretch forth your wings and fly!" The eagle looked around, back towards the barnyard and then up to the sky. Slowly, he stretched his wings, and with a triumphant cry, he soared away into the heavens.

Somewhere along the line, we like this poor young eagle, were put in a lowly barn with the chickens of the world around us. We learned to live and eat from the ground and grew up believing that there was not much more to do than sit and cluck all day.

But the reality is that we are eagles! We were created to fly and even soar! God has great purpose for our lives! If we would only realize who we are in Him!

Let's remember who we are today and stop acting like chickens!

Dear Lord, help us to soar like You have planned for us to do.   Help our eyes be open to the great purpose that You have mapped out before us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Monday, March 27, 2017

Are you blooming where you are planted?

2 Corinthians 10:12  (ESV)
Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.

An ancient legend tells of a king who walked into his garden one day to find almost everything withered and dying. After speaking to an oak near the gate, the king learned that he was troubled because he was not tall and beautiful like the pine. The pine overheard their conversation and added that she, too, was upset, for she could not bear delicious fruit like the pear tree. The pear tree heard his name and began to complain that he did not have the lovely odor of the spruce. And so it went throughout the entire garden.

Near the very edge of the garden grew a little daisy. As the king approached, he noticed her bright little face, full of life. "Well, little flower," said the monarch, "I'm glad to find that there is at least one happy face in my garden."

"Oh king," she said, "I know I'm little, and not many people notice me, but one day I realized that if you planted me here, you must have had a good reason. So, your majesty, I've determined to be the best little flower I can be!"

Our King has planted a beautiful garden. Not one of us is greater than the next. It is His perfection.

We must come to a place where we trust that God has a reason for creating us the way He has and has planted us in just the place he desired. Comparing ourselves with one another will only make us wither. When we become satisfied in His creation (that is us), that's when we'll find true happiness".. and we will shine.

Let's give God our all our disappointments and be determined to be the best that we can be for Him!

Dear Lord, we pray that we would give our very best to You. Thank You for making us exactly like You wanted to and with a plan. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Sunday, March 26, 2017

A long apprenticeship

1 Peter 4:7  (ESV)
The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.

A foreign soldier was brought before his commanding officer and accused of communicating with the enemy. He had been seen emerging from an area where their troops were known to patrol. The poor man summed up his defense in a few words, stating that he had slipped away to spend an hour alone in prayer. "Have you been in the habit of spending an hour in private prayer?" demanded the officer. "Yes, Sir," he replied. "Well" said his commander, "never in your life have you been in more need of prayer than right now. Kneel down and pray aloud so that we all may hear you."

Expecting cruel punishment, maybe even death, the soldier dropped to his knees and poured out his heart to God. His prayer revealed a deep intimacy with God. His earnest fluency, humble appeal for divine intervention, and very evident trust in one who was strong to deliver, told without a doubt that he came regularly to the throne of grace.

"You are free to go," said the officer. "No one could have prayed that way without a long apprenticeship -- soldiers who never attend drill are always ill at ease for the review."

I read that the average Christian only spends about seven minutes a day in prayer. We need to practice prayer in our lives that we may be able to endure when trials come our way and stand strong against the enemy and his tactics!

Let's ask the Lord to help us become disciplined in this area today.

Dear Lord, help us to people of prayer. Help us come to You throughout the day so that we may be ready to overcome the things that the world throws at us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Be ready for the enemy

Luke 10:19-20  (ESV)
19 Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. 20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.

In 1917, the Ottoman Empire controlled the city of Aqaba which seemed impregnable to any attack. Behind the city in every direction was a vast desert, and overlooking the city's harbor were huge naval guns protecting it against any enemy attack from the sea.

But on July 6, 1917, Lawrence of Arabia bravely led a force of irregular Arab cavalry across this vast desert wasteland and swept into Aqaba from the north. In the surprise attack, Aqaba fell because its gigantic naval guns faced the wrong way and could not protect the city from the invading forces. Suddenly the Turkish hold over Palestine was broken, to be replaced by the British mandate, which eventually led to the creation of the State of Israel.

The Ottoman Empire failed to understand, and also, underestimated their enemy. As a result, the right weapons were not in place to defend themselves against any attack.

Let's not make the same mistake the Turks made! We need to be careful not to underestimate our enemy! First, let us ask the Lord for His wisdom concerning our vulnerabilities. Then, on a daily basis, continue to equip ourselves with the weapons of our warfare. In so doing, we'll walk in victory through Him!

Dear Lord, help us to be always ready for the attacks of the enemy. We thank You for the victory that we can have through You. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Friday, March 24, 2017

Be persistent in our prayer life

1 Peter 3:12 (ESV)
For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
    and his ears are open to their prayer.
But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.

Here is a short illustration that I believe will bless each of you.

“Teacher”, said a young boy, “why is it that so many prayers are unanswered? I do not understand. The Bible says, ‘Ask, and you shall receive; seek, and you shall find; knock and the door shall be opened unto you.’ But it seems to me a great many knock and are not admitted.

The teacher answered, “Did you ever sit by your fireplace on some dark evening and hear a loud knocking at the door? Going to answer the knock, have you not sometimes looked out in the darkness, seeing nothing, but hearing the pattering feet of some mischievous boy, who knocked but did not wish to enter, and therefore ran away? It is often so with us. We ask for blessings but do not really expect them. We knock but do not mean to enter. We fear that Jesus will not hear us, will not fulfill His promises, will not admit us. And so we go way.”

“Ah I see,” said the boy, his eyes shining with the new light dawning in his soul. “Jesus can’t be expected to answer runaway knocks. He has never promised it. I mean to keep knocking and knocking until He can’t help opening the door.”

Let's become persistent in our prayer life and expect God to open the door!

Dear Lord, help us be persistent in our prayers. Help us to be faithful as we call upon Your Name. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Thursday, March 23, 2017


Hebrews 10:25  (ESV)
Not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

I read a story about a young woman named Linda who was traveling alone up the rugged highway from Alberta to the Yukon. The first evening she found a room at a small-town Inn in the mountains and figured she'd continue her journey bright and fresh, early the next morning. But strangely, when she called down to the front desk and asked for a wake-up call at 5 AM the clerk sounded puzzled by her request.

She awoke bright and early as she intended, and suddenly realized the reason for the clerk’s reaction the night before. A thick fog covered the mountain tops -- it was not the kind of weather in which you'd want to take a Sunday drive. Not wanting to look foolish, however, she got her things together and went to breakfast. There, she met two friendly truck drivers and who invited her to join them. "So, where are you headed?" one of the truckers asked. "Whitehorse", Linda replied.

"You're not planning on driving that little car are you?" he said chuckling and pointing outside at the only little car among several eighteen-wheelers in the parking lot. "This pass is dangerous in weather like this!" "Well," said Linda, "I'm determined to try." "Well then -- I guess we're just going to have to hug you," the other trucker suggested. "What?!" Linda gasped, "I don't think that would be appropriate!"

"Not like that!" the two truck drivers laughed heartily. "We'll put one truck in front of you and one in the rear. In that way, we'll get you through the mountains." All that foggy morning, Linda followed the two red dots in front of her and had the reassurance of a big escort behind as they made their way safely through the mountains.

Just as Linda did, we often feel confident that we can get by on our own, without any help from anyone else -- and before we know it, we're lost in the thick fog of the mountain of life. I have seen so many people leave the fellowship of believers and go off on their own, becoming bitter against a brother or sister, or pastor and believing they'll be better off doing their own thing. Many of these have sadly never come back to the fold. But this is yet another way the enemy of our souls seeks to draw us away from the Lord. As brothers and sisters in the Lord, we need to be closely knit with one another, helping each other and giving and receiving compassion and love. We need one another!

Let's get back into fellowship. Let's make it a priority to be "hugged" by our family in the Lord who know the way and can lead safely ahead of us, and strive to reach out and "hug" others by gently encouraging them along from behind!

Dear Lord, help us make an effort to be hugged and hug our fellow brothers and sisters as we go through this life. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

We are that pearl

Matthew 13:45-46 (ESV)
45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, 46 who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.

Pearl harvesting can be an illustration of how the Lord takes us into His "shell" like an irritating grain of sand, and over time, covers us with His beautiful covering, forming us into polished and precious gems for his glory and delight. This image of sanctification takes the metaphor in one direction: but here is another interesting thought. The beautiful pearl inside the oyster cannot be seen or enjoyed without a great price being paid. The oyster must die. It must be torn open in order to find the treasure within. This speaks to us of the original foundation and source of our beauty. Jesus our Messiah had to be bruised, afflicted, torn and killed so that the beautiful treasures God intended us to be from the beginning could be discovered and released from the darkness of sin.

Each one of us is a treasure in the Lord's sight. We are His pearls of great value for which He paid the highest price! What a great honor -- even the greatest honor -- to be called sons and daughters of the Living God! Through His sacrifice, we become holy, and obtain the beauty and glory of eternal life.

We so bless the Lord when we radiate the polished beauty He alone can give us. Our works shine forth before men, glorifying our Father in Heaven and preparing the way for his coming Kingdom. Let's remember who we are and walk with this beautiful radiance. There are so many people who need to see, and know Him.

Dear Jesus, let us walk the life that You gave us with Your radiance shining forth so the World can see You in everything we do. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Thoughts about remodeling

John 1:12 (ESV)
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.

We are in the middle of remodeling our two spare rooms after our boys bought a house leaving their rooms vacant. These projects brought to my mind a word study I once did while at Bible College.  The word for builder in Hebrew is “bo-neh”. It is also translated repairer. When our Messiah came 2000 years ago, He came to repair lives -- to do a complete restoration of all that is broken in this world.

Interestingly, the Hebrew words for son, “ben” and daughter, “baht” both also come from the word bo-neh! So -- if you were wondering what God’s calling on your life is, here you have it! We, as sons and daughters, are called to repair and build up our families, the body of Jesus and the world around us.

Let's begin looking for opportunities to bless those around us! Let's seek to be the ones to repair broken hearts, lives and relationships. In this way, we will truly become sons and daughters of God!

Dear Lord, open our ears and our eyes to those around us. Help us find ways that we can help build them up. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Its testing time

Acts 14:22  (ESV)
Strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.

I have been thinking about this lately doesn’t it seem like that the tests we're going through are getting harder and harder. Do you remember when you took tests in high school? At the time they may have seemed hard. But imagine if you had to take an elementary school test when you were in high school. You'd probably think – oh this is so simple.

So if it seems that the testing of your faith is more intense – it simply means that you're graduating to new levels of faith! Our faith is being tested, and as we pass each "faith" test, we're finding different means of being tested. I suppose in a few years, we'll look back and think to ourselves – wow that was a hard test, but now it doesn't look so difficult!

If you're going through a tough time right now, be encouraged because it simply means that God is graduating you to new levels of faith! The harder the tests, the greater difficulty – the greater the reward, an increased blessing awaits you! Stay focused, stay alert and remember that God is trying to stretch your faith so that you can accomplish even more for His Kingdom!

Dear Lord, thank You that You trust us with harder tests along the way as our faith grows. Help us be diligent to study for the test that lay before us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Remember who you are talking to

Matthew 6:6  (ESV)
But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

Robert A.Cook, president of The King's College in New York, was speaking at the Moody Bible Institute some years ago. He was saying that the day before, he had been at a gathering in Washington and had talked with Vice President George Bush. And went on to say that he later spoke briefly with President Ronald Reagan.

Then smiling, Cook said, "But that's nothing! Today, I talked with God!"

If we really understood what an amazing privilege it is that the Almighty God, Creator of heaven and earth, Ruler of all, Perfect in holiness and righteousness, the One and Only completely and totally just, loving, merciful, omnipotent and omnipresent God -- calls us His children and cares for our every little need, I think we would give Him a lot more time of day.

We so often fail to give God the glory He deserves! When we pray our next prayer, let's keep in mind precisely who it is we're talking to!

Dear Lord, help us to always remember what a privilege we have to come to You in prayer.  In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Where is your focus

Romans 16:25-27 (ESV)
25 Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages 26 but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith— 27 to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.

I had my eyes checked and got my new glasses this week. As I put my new glasses on and noticed how much better I could see got me thinking about my focus
Colonel G.W. Goethals, the man responsible for the completion of the Panama Canal, had major problems with the climate and the geography as it was being built. If that wasn't enough to deal with, he had an even bigger problem. It was the growing criticism back home from those who predicted he'd never finish the project and had opinions about how to do it better.

One day, a colleague asked him, "Aren't you going to answer all these critics?"
"In time," answered Goethals.
"When?" his partner asked.
"When the canal is finished.

We, who know Jesus and have given our lives to his purposes have a big task at hand -- a bit bigger, I would say, than the building the Panama Canal. There is a world of people who are hungry to know God and the time is short.

The climate and geography may not be ideal and people around us might be critical, but the task still remains -- and we who love God must all contribute and stay focused!! Yes, we may come across some obstacles along the way but we cannot let them distract us from our calling!

If you haven't been focused on sharing the Good News of Messiah with the lost, let's take this opportunity make it a goal today. If each of us led only one person to the Kingdom, can you imagine what a difference that would make?! Let's make it a point to lead at least one person today.  

Dear Lord, we pray that our focus would be on the things of You. Help us not get distracted by the things around us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Friday, March 17, 2017

Happy Saint Patrick's Day

Matthew 28:19  (ESV)
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

St Patrick was the bishop to Ireland and he lived in a time just before Christianity became the mainstream religion in the Roman Empire, sometime around AD386 – AD460.

His faith journey wasn’t an easy one. Like Daniel and Joseph of the Bible, he was captured by pirates and sold into slavery when he was only teenager (16 years old). Life was difficult for slaves. Not only was life difficult, but he was dragged from his home and sent into slavery in another country without his family. Tradition says that as a slave in Ireland he was forced to be a shepherd, herding sheep and pigs. His father had been a church deacon, and his grandfather a clergyman, but by his account, he only turned to religion and prayed out to God when he was in captivity. Conditions were harsh and his only comfort was what he received through praying constantly. After six years as a slave he escaped by boat to Britain. He traveled the 200 miles to the ocean and according to some stories either stowed away or booked passage. The boat landed not far from where his parents lived, and one would expect a joyful reunion and for him to remain with his parents. Instead of staying though, he traveled to France to study and become a priest. Because of his captivity, he never received any formal education and lacked the eloquence the other students had.

While studying for ministry, he received a vision from God to return to Ireland as a missionary. He only took the name Patrick when he later became a Bishop. It was a great act of forgiveness that he returned to the people who enslaved him in order to share with them the love of Christ.

Unlike most Bible teachers and preachers of the time, Patrick didn’t speak very well nor deliver fine sermons. It wasn’t his rhetoric that won the people over. He had the rare ability to use common, everyday life experiences to explain difficult theological concepts – much like Jesus did and the apostle Paul after Him. That’s pretty much why St. Patrick’s Day is represented by a shamrock. According to legend, Patrick would take up a three-leaf clover and ask, “Does it have one leaf or three?” Those listening would respond, “both.” Patrick then explained, “And so it is with the Trinity – Father, Son, and Spirit are one God. Three persons in one.” However, that alone wasn’t enough to bring his people to faith in God either.

Ironically, what he lacked in school, he more than made up for by what he learned through his upbringing of trials and adversity. And that was a desperate dependence on God through prayer. This was more than any theological school could teach him and it was instrumental in his success as a minister of God. It was that and the demonstration of his faith through his actions and prayer life that convinced so many to believe in God.

St. Patrick wasn’t just a minister for God inside the 4 walls of the church. He was outspoken about the practice of slavery in his country as well. His repeated pleas to the Christian leadership in Britain were ignored but he persisted and like the widow in Jesus’ parable, was rewarded – with the decision to end the slave trade in Ireland.

Dear Lord, we thank you for men Like St. Patrick who wasn’t afraid to share Your love to those around him. Help us to be bold like him. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Sheep among the wolves

Matthew 10:16 (ESV)
Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.

Nature provides us with an illustration that closely parallels the insidious tactics employed by our adversary. According to scientists, Arctic polar bears feed almost entirely on seals. To enjoy such a meal, they sometimes resort to a cunning bit of trickery. If the hole through which the seal gets his food is near the edge of the ice, the polar bear will take a deep breath and swim under water to its exact location. Remaining below the surface, he will then make a tiny scratching sound, imitating a fish. When the charmed seal hears this, he dives in for a quick supper, only to find himself suddenly entrapped in the huge, hungry embrace of his predator.

God has sent us forth as sheep among the wolves. There are so many theories disguising themselves as Godly. We're hungry for that meal -- but we must be wise enough to make sure it's not a trap! Keep reading and studying the Word of God! Pray and ask Him to reveal His truth.

The enemy loves to tempt us with a 'treat' so he can devour us! Don't take anyone's word but God's!

Dear Lord, help us not fall for the tricks of the devil trying to get us to fall for his schemes. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Is your axe sharp?

Ecclesiastes 10:10 (ESV)
If the iron is blunt, and one does not sharpen the edge,
    he must use more strength,
    but wisdom helps one to succeed.

When I was younger I used to do a lot of camping. When camping we used a lot of firewood. One thing I was taught by my leaders was to always sharpen my axe! A dull ax meant harder work chopping through fallen trees for our fires. The sharper the axe the less effort and energy required for the task. So I learned early on to sharpen my axe before heading onto the weekend camp outs. By sharpening my axe I saved myself a lot of time and energy.

We can all learn a lesson from keeping my ax sharp. How many of us are exerting so much energy for the Kingdom, but are working with dull axes? We need to sharpen our spiritual lives, get focused in prayer and spend deep time in the Word. Then, when we are "out in the woods", working for the Kingdom our effectiveness will be greatly multiplied because our axes are sharp!

Don't get so busy that your ax becomes dull. Remember that your devotion to the Lord and His word will sharpen your spiritual life, especially before you start the day. Prioritize your devotional life and watch how your "edge" will cut through the problems, obstacles and difficult situations, like a hot knife through butter!

Dear Lord, help us to come to You in Bible study and prayer so that we can keep our faith sharp and ready to handle what comes before each of us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Are you a wounded duck?

Psalm 118:17  (ESV)
I shall not die, but I shall live,
    and recount the deeds of the Lord.

A farmer and his friend went duck hunting. Eventually, they got to talking about the things of God, as they always would. "You're always talking about these battles you have with the devil," the farmer's friend said to him. "It's so silly – I mean, I'm not even a Christian and I've never experienced anything like that."

"Yes my friend," the wise farmer answered, "but if you shot two ducks -- one was wounded and one was dead -- which would you go after first?"

"Well," he said, "I guess I'd go after the wounded duck – I can always get the dead one later."

"Mmm-hmm," said the farmer, "The devil knows you're a dead duck."

For those of us who are walking with the Lord today, be encouraged! Our enemy knows that we have potential to do great things for God, and out of fear, he'll try anything to take us out. This is so very evident by the constant battle we all face.

Let's stand strong against the devil today! And rise up to the Lord's calling upon our lives! We will fight and we will WIN! Because if God is for us, who can be against us.

Dear Lord, give us the strength to stand against the devil today. Give us the encouragement that we need to stand firm and be the witness You want us to be. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Go out of your way

Romans 12:17-18, 21 (ESV)
17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

One minister tells of a wife who came into his office full of hatred toward her husband. "I do not only want to get rid of him, I want to get even! Before I divorce him, I want to hurt him as much as he has hurt me!"

The minister suggested an ingenious plan "Why don't you go home and act as if you really love your husband. Tell him how much he means to you. Praise him for every decent trait. Go out of your way to be as kind, considerate and generous as possible. Spare no efforts to please him. Make him believe you love him. Then -- after you've convinced him of your undying love and that you cannot live without him, drop the bomb. Tell him you want a divorce. That will really hurt him.

"With revenge in her eyes, she smiled and exclaimed, "Beautiful, beautiful! Boy, will he ever be devastated!" And she did it with enthusiasm. For two months she showed love and kindness, she listened, served and reinforced. When she didn't return to his office, the minister called. "So are you ready now to go through with the divorce?" "Divorce?" she exclaimed. "Never! I discovered that I really do love him."

This woman's actions changed her feelings. Whether it's a tough relationship, a long-time fear, or a task that seems too big for us to accomplish, sometimes we need to act in faith in order to see it conquered for the Kingdom!

Whatever it may be, let's give it to the Lord today and ask Him to motivate us to go forth with strength and passion -- for His sake!

Dear Lord, help us to go forward with Your strength and passion today. Help us to look for the positive in things rather than the negative. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Dynamite King?

1 Corinthians 15:55-58  (ESV)
55 “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

Every day roughly 150,000 around the world die. Death has a way of raising our spiritual temperature and quickening us to re-evaluate life...especially to ask, "Am I doing all that I can do?"

Have you ever heard of how the Nobel Peace Prize originated?

Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, awoke one morning in 1888, shocked to discover his own obituary in the morning news. The newspaper had mistakenly printed the story about Alfred, instead of his brother, who had just passed away. As he read his own epitaph, the story of the "Dynamite King", the great industrialist who made an immense fortune from explosives -- Alfred Nobel was rudely awakened to the fact that the world viewed him as a merchant of death! The mistake was not wasted on him. Rather, it served as his wake up call!

As he read his obituary with horror, Alfred resolved to make clear to the world his understanding of the true meaning and purpose of his life. So he used his immense fortune to create a foundation which would promote and embody his ideal for world peace...and he is now remembered, not as the "Dynamite King", but the creator of what we know now as the "Nobel Peace Prize."

Let this be our wake up call. Let's re-evaluate our lives, look within...and ask ourselves, "Are we truly doing all that we can be doing for the Lord?" Because when this life is finally past, and our deeds are all recorded in the "Books", only what was done with and for the Lord, will last...forever!

Dear Lord, help us evaluate our life today and see what it is that we are doing for Your good. Help us to things that would bring honor to your name. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Become a servant

Mark 10:44-45 (ESV)
44 and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.

A noncommissioned officer was directing the repairs of a military building during the American Revolution. He was barking orders to the soldiers under his command, trying to get them to raise a heavy wooden beam.

As the men struggled in vain to lift the beam into place, a man who was passing by stopped to ask the one in charge why he wasn't helping the men. With all the pomp of an emperor, the soldier responded, "Sir, I am a corporal!"

"You are, are you?" replied the passerby, "I was not aware of that." Then, taking off his hat and bowing, he said, "I ask your pardon, Corporal." Then the stranger walked over and strained with the soldiers to lift the heavy beam. After the job was finished, he turned and said, "Mr. Corporal, when you have another such job, and have not enough men, send for your Commander in Chief, and I will come and help you a second time." The corporal was thunderstruck. The man’s name was General George Washington.

We all want to be honored, respected and appreciated. So badly, sometimes, that we try to demand it. The fact is, that these things cannot be demanded or even requested. True honor, respect and appreciation only come one way. When we become servants.

Let’s ask the Lord to help us to become the servants He would desire. After all, He did set a great example by laying down his life for us.

Dear Lord, help us each be the servants that You would have for each of us.  Help us reach out to those around us that need Your love. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Friday, March 10, 2017

Be encouraged

1 Corinthians 4:2 (ESV)
Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.

In the early 1800's a preacher gave a message to call men to join him on the mission field in Africa. In the audience were only a few women along with a boy. The pastor knew that few women were expected to volunteer to face harsh African jungle conditions. However, he gave the message; and no one responded. What he didn't realize was that he had touched the heart of a little boy whose name was David Livingstone. This boy would grow up to spend the rest of his life ministering to Africa's unreached tribes.

David Livingstone was touched by the faithfulness of a pastor who gave his message when there seemed to be no obvious fruit from its delivery – and that made all the difference! The lesson is this: we are not in charge of results, but only responsible to be faithful to what God has given us to do. You may not be seeing any fruit from your obedient labor at the moment – it may appear next week, next year or a century from now, but in its time the fruit will appear, and may be greater than you could have ever imagined. Heaven will, one day, reveal the fruit of lives we have touched by our faithfulness!

Be encouraged – and don't give up. Your faithful stewardship will produce its true harvest which will never fade or pass away!

Dear Lord, help us be faithful and not give up when there seems to be no fruit. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Here's mud in your eye

John 9:6-7 (ESV)
6 Having said these things, he spit on the ground and made mud with the saliva. Then he anointed the man's eyes with the mud 7 and said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means Sent). So he went and washed and came back seeing.

If you'll notice, Jesus did two things. First, He placed mud on the man's eyes. Then, He told him to go and wash himself in the pool of Siloam. Of course, the man willingly obeyed. If you had some gross concoction smeared on your eyes, wouldn't you? The mud actually provided the motivation for his obedience.

The point is? We don't always have to understand why we find ourselves muddy sometimes. Perhaps if we weren't muddy, we'd never be motivated to obey! And obedience is crucial to a successful and flourishing walk with the Lord.

Let's not despise the mud on our face today. We all have times of trial. Let's use them for an opportunity to be obedient! God is just trying to help us see better!

Dear Lord,  when we find mud on our face help us to be obedient to what You have for us to do. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

An uplifting word

Proverbs 12:25 (ESV)
Anxiety in a man's heart weighs him down,
    but a good word makes him glad.

I read a story  of someone describing their relationship with their father. It went like this.  "My father did some pretty nasty things to me. But at the end of his life, as I kneeled by his bedside, I told him how thankful I was for every good thing he had done and every way he had blessed me, and there were many. We were good friends when he passed away." One of the greatest regrets you can avoid at the end of your life is the failure to praise others when they deserved it, (and even when they didn't).

But why is it that affirming words are so pitifully rare in our conversations, especially when so many people are anxious, discouraged, and depressed by all the negativity in this life? We're living in a world that's constantly knocking us down, from cradle to grave. Is it any wonder that anxiety and depression are rampant at every age level?

But notice the advice that Solomon gives -- a good word makes the heart glad. We should take this to heart. A compliment or blessing can be one of the greatest motivators, and can be truly life changing. And every one of us needs this kind of encouragement to run the race of this life.

Let's be people of encouragement, looking for the word which will lift another person up and bring healing and hope to her soul. A good word will also do wonders for our own hearts.

Dear Lord, help us be the one today that brings a kind uplifting word to someone today. Help those words bring healing to them. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Do you want to be made well?

John 5:6 (ESV)
When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?”

Jesus asked this man "Do you want to be healed?" Of course he did! Wouldn't you? Why did Jesus ask a question like this when its answer was so clearly obvious? It seems the Lord wanted to hear him verbalize his need.

In the biography of George Mueller, a strong man of God who established orphanages throughout England in the 1800's and raised the kids up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, this amazing Saint relied upon God for every single need that he faced without making any financial appeals. He laid before the Lord every aspect of these orphanages. He prayed for the locations, the buildings, the furniture to fill them, the workers to run them, and everything else he could think of. When the first orphanage was ready, Mueller realized one major thing was lacking -- orphans!! He forgot to ask the Lord to provide the orphans!

Sometimes the obvious things just smack us in the face, don't they, we just forgot to ask!

The Lord is asking us today, "Do you want to be made well?" Whether it be physical healing, spiritual, emotional or financial healing, nothing is too great or too small for our Lord! Perhaps we've just forgotten to ask Him!

Dear Lord, we pray for healing today. Thank You for always being there for us.  Help us not forget to ask You for the healing that we need. In the Name of Jesus, Amen. 

Monday, March 6, 2017

Godly ambition

Jeremiah 45:5  (ESV)
And do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not, for behold, I am bringing disaster upon all flesh, declares the Lord. But I will give you your life as a prize of war in all places to which you may go.”

J. Oswald Sanders, a Godly man and former director of Overseas Missionary Fellowship, once wrote about a position he desired. As he contemplated lobbying for the position, at one point, while walking through the city of Auckland, New Zealand, a verse of Scripture came to his mind, "Seekest thou great things for thyself? Seek them not!"

Sanders later said, "The words came just as though it was God speaking. There were crowds all around me, and no one else heard the voice, but I heard it all right!" He went on to say, "I believe that was a real turning point in my service to the Lord." As a result, he never sought the position, but later it was opened for him, in God's timing.

The world's standards of greatness -- money, success, power and fame -- mean nothing to God. If we truly aspire to greatness, we will learn from Jesus' example. He didn't exemplify His greatness by conquest or by riches or worldly success – but rather by humility, gentleness and servant hood.

If we truly want to be great in God's kingdom, we will decide to transform worldly "ambition" into "Godly ambition". We will not seek honor, but humility. We won't desire power to rule, but to become the greatest servant. Beyond everything, we will long to be great in His love…and through His love, influence and transform the world around us. These are "ambitions" worthy of our Lord and Savior, who, because of His great love and humility, was exalted above every other name, and also promised that He will humble the exalted...and, exalt the humble.

Dear Lord, today we pray that we would not have a worldly ambition but instead have a Godly ambition. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.