VIDEO Amazing Grace, Celtic Thunder

Apr 23, 2011

Any day is the perfect to time take a moment to and count your blessings… Family, Love, Friends and laughter. May your basket be full of them; Today & Always. From Everyone in Celtic Thunder.

An Inside View – Is God’s Will My Will?

An Inside View
flower insides
The Lord looks at the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7

Retired physicist Arie van’t Riet creates works of art in an unusual way. He arranges plants and deceased animals in various compositions and then x-rays them. He scans the developed x-rays into a computer and then adds color to certain parts of his pictures. His artwork reveals the inner complexity of flowers, fish, birds, reptiles, and monkeys.

An inside view of something is often more fascinating and more significant than an exterior view. At first glance, Samuel thought Eliab looked like he could be Israel’s next king (1 Sam. 16:6). But God warned Samuel not to look at Eliab’s physical traits. He told Samuel, “People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (v. 7). God chose David, instead of Eliab, to be Israel’s next king.

When God looks at us, He is more interested in our hearts than our height, the state of our soul than the structure of our face. He doesn’t see us as too old, too young, too small, or too big. He zeroes in on the things that matter—our response to His love for us and our concern for other people (Matt. 22:37-39). Second Chronicles 6:30 says that God alone knows the human heart. When the God who has done so much for us looks at our heart, what does He see?

Dear God, help me to value what You value. As I follow Your example, I pray that You will be pleased with what You see in my heart.

The true measure of a person is what’s in the heart.

By Jennifer Benson Schuldt
Is God’s Will My Will?
man rock woods

This is the will of God, your sanctification… —1 Thessalonians 4:3

Sanctification is not a question of whether God is willing to sanctify me— is it my will? Am I willing to let God do in me everything that has been made possible through the atonement of the Cross of Christ? Am I willing to let Jesus become sanctification to me, and to let His life be exhibited in my human flesh? (see 1 Corinthians 1:30). Beware of saying, “Oh, I am longing to be sanctified.” No, you are not. Recognize your need, but stop longing and make it a matter of action. Receive Jesus Christ to become sanctification for you by absolute, unquestioning faith, and the great miracle of the atonement of Jesus will become real in you.

All that Jesus made possible becomes mine through the free and loving gift of God on the basis of what Christ accomplished on the cross. And my attitude as a saved and sanctified soul is that of profound, humble holiness (there is no such thing as proud holiness). It is a holiness based on agonizing repentance, a sense of inexpressible shame and degradation, and also on the amazing realization that the love of God demonstrated itself to me while I cared nothing about Him (see Romans 5:8). He completed everything for my salvation and sanctification. No wonder Paul said that nothing “shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:39).

Sanctification makes me one with Jesus Christ, and in Him one with God, and it is accomplished only through the magnificent atonement of Christ. Never confuse the effect with the cause. The effect in me is obedience, service, and prayer, and is the outcome of inexpressible thanks and adoration for the miraculous sanctification that has been brought about in me because of the atonement through the Cross of Christ.

Civilization is based on principles which imply that the passing moment is permanent. The only permanent thing is God, and if I put anything else as permanent, I become atheistic. I must build only on God (John 14:6). The Highest Good—Thy Great Redemption, 565 L


The Greatness of God

Isaiah 40:12-31

If you ask a group of people what God is like, you will receive many different answers. Some will say He is a force somewhere in the cosmos, while others picture a benevolent grandfather type who overlooks “little sins.” Most of the time, the description given will reveal more about the speaker than about the real Jehovah. In fact, the true God might surprise you.

As the Father reveals Himself in Scripture, one word that’s never used when referring to Him is “it.” God is a person; in every reference, He is given a name (Yahweh, Elohim, Lord) or referred to by masculine pronouns (He, Him). He fits all of the attributes of personhood—intelligence to reason, emotions to feel, and the will to make decisions. From Genesis to Revelation, God displays these features.

Scripture also shows God’s immutability. Let us be clear about what that means: Neither the Lord’s nature nor His character ever changes—He is always Spirit, and His love remains constant. We can all expect that God’s principles and laws will hold true and that He will act exactly as He has promised. While He does adjust His emotions to fit a situation, delight, anger, and other feelings are nuances of His being, not new traits.

God is eternal—He has no beginning or end. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. No one created Him; God simply is. That’s hard for humans to understand, but if the Lord were completely explainable, He would be like us and unworthy of worship. If we are to honor the Father, we should know Him as He really is—eternal and unchanging.

Full Assurance of Understanding

“That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ.” (Colossians 2:2)

There are two key aspects to this message. Our hearts need encouragement by “being knit together.” The result will produce a “full assurance of understanding” and an acknowledgment of the mystery of the triune Godhead.

The comforted hearts are to be “knit together.” The Greek term sumbibazo means “to force together, to compact.” Paul uses this term to illustrate the impossibility of teaching God anything. “For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?” (1 Corinthians 2:16). Positively, the strength of the church body comes from being “joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth” (Ephesians 4:16). Those “joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God” (Colossians 2:19).

The result of the encouragement is wonderful: We should attain to the riches of “full assurance.” The Greek term plerophoria is only used four times: promising understanding in our text, a full assurance of the gospel (1 Thessalonians 1:5) and of hope (Hebrews 6:11), and the full assurance of faith (Hebrews 10:22).

The Greek synonym plerophoreo identifies “sure belief” among us (Luke 1:1), being “fully persuaded” of God’s promises (Romans 4:21). We should be “fully persuaded” in our own mind (Romans 14:5) while making “full proof” of our ministry (2 Timothy 4:5). All of this makes our testimony “fully known” in the world (2 Timothy 4:17). Perhaps the goal of “full assurance” is that we “may speak boldly, as [we] ought to speak” (Ephesians 6:20). HMM III

Godliness Is Not Valued

His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make
thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
—Matthew 25:21

After more than thirty years of observing the religious scene I have been forced to conclude that saintliness and church leadership are not often synonymous….

Were the church a pure and Spirit-filled body, wholly led and directed by spiritual considerations, certainly the purest and the saintliest men and women would be the ones most appreciated and most honored; but the opposite is true. Godliness is no longer valued, except for the very old or the very dead…. The Christlike, the self-forgetting, the other-worldly are jostled aside to make room for the latest converted playboy who is usually not too well converted and still very much of a playboy….

The wise Christian will be content to wait for that day. In the meantime, he will serve his generation in the will of God. If he should be overlooked in the religious popularity contests he will give it but small attention. He knows whom he is trying to please and he is willing to let the world think what it will of him. He will not be around much longer anyway, and where he is going men will be known not by their Hooper rating but by the holiness of their character.

Help me to focus on “holiness of… character” whether I’m valued by people or not. Amen.

Seek More of God for Himself Alone

Or despiseth thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? Romans 2:4

Why should a man write and distribute a tract instructing us on “How to Pray So God Will Send You the Money You Need”?

Any of us who have experienced a life and ministry of faith can tell how the Lord met our needs. Surely we believe that God can send money to His believing children—but it becomes a pretty cheap thing to get excited about the money and fail to give the glory to Him who is the Giver!

So, many are busy “using” God. Use God to get a job! Use God to give us safety! Use God to give us peace of mind! Use God to obtain success in business! Use God to provide heaven at last!

Brethren, we ought to learn—and learn it very soon—that it is much better to have God first and have God Himself even if we have only a thin dime than to have all the riches and all the influence in the world and not have God with it!

John Wesley believed that men ought to seek God alone because He is love. I think in our day we are in need of such an admonition as: “Seek more of God, and seek Him for Himself alone!”

If we become serious-minded about this, we would soon discover that all of the gifts of God come along with the knowledge and the presence of God Himself.

Doting on the Past

In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee. ISAIAH 49:8

I always get an uneasy feeling when I find myself with people who have nothing to discuss but the glories of the days that are past!

Why are we not willing to believe what the Bible tells us? The Christian’s great future is before him. Therefore, the whole direction of the Christian’s look should be forward.

It is a fact that we should ponder soberly that so many Christians seem to have their future already behind them! Their glory is behind them. The only future they have is their past. They are always bringing around the cold ashes of yesterday’s burned-out campfire!

Even their testimony, if they give it, reveals their backward look. Their downcast look betrays that they are facing in the wrong direction.

We should take Paul for an example here. I think he occasionally took a quick, happy backward look just to remind himself of the grace and goodness of God enjoyed by the maturing believers in their Savior, Jesus Christ!

Lord, I look forward to the day when people from every nation will turn away from their sin and false religions to confess You as their Savior and Lord. How can You use me to fulfill Your plan, Father?