VIDEO Don’t Be Stopped

I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do. John 17:4

An employer takes a trip out of town and leaves her assistant with a list of tasks to accomplish in her absence. If the employer returns and finds the tasks only partially complete, or completed in an unacceptable way, what does that mean? It means the assistant had little respect (fear, honor, awe) for the employer. The employer was not glorified by the assistant’s performance. But what if the tasks are completed above and beyond the employer’s expectations? The employer is glorified (honored) by the way the assistant valued the employer’s assignment. The assistant may not have agreed with or enjoyed the tasks. But in order to honor the employer, the tasks were completed.

Jesus acted like the faithful assistant. When He was on earth, He accomplished the work that the Father had given Him to do. He “set [His] face like a flint” (Isaiah 50:7), letting nothing keep Him from glorifying the Father. He “steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51) and die for the sins of the world.

Whatever tasks the Father has given you—spouse, parent, employee, friend—let nothing stop you from accomplishing them to God’s glory.

Perseverance is the ability to progress in spite of adversity.  Jerry Bridges


The Lord’s Greatest Prayer, Part 1 (John 17:1–5)

The Problem Within

Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven! Matthew 21:9

A few years ago, a woodpecker began tapping on the siding of our home. We thought the problem was only external. Then one day, my son and I climbed up a ladder into the attic only to have a bird fly past our startled faces. The problem was worse than we’d suspected: it was inside our house.

When Jesus arrived in Jerusalem, the crowd was hoping He would be the one to fix their external problem—their oppression by the Romans. They went wild, shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” (Matthew 21:9). This was the moment they’d been waiting for; God’s appointed King had come. If God’s chosen Deliverer was going to begin reforming things, wouldn’t He start with all the wrong out there? But in most gospel accounts, the “triumphal entry” is followed by Jesus driving out exploitative moneychangers . . . from the temple (vv. 12–13). He was cleaning house, and from the inside out.

That’s what happens when we welcome Jesus as King; He comes to set things right—and He starts with us. He makes us confront the evil inside. Jesus on the donkey is like the warriors in the Trojan horse. The horse was welcomed as a symbol of peace, but its ultimate aim was unconditional surrender. Jesus our King requires the same from us.

By:  Glenn Packiam

Reflect & Pray

What does it mean for Jesus to be your King? Why is it vital for you to surrender your all to Him?

Dear Jesus, You’re the true King. Forgive me for wanting You to only fix the problems in the world around me and not to confront the sin in my heart. Show me where I’m prone to wander and expose the ways I want to run my own life.

Characteristics of Christians

Romans 15:13

Today’s verse from Romans 15 is Paul’s concise description of how God can transform hearts and attitudes when people trust in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Instead of being filled with fear, anxiety, frustration, and stress, they can now—empowered by the Holy Spirit—be characterized by hope, joy, and peace.

Yet all too often those old emotions come back when circumstances are difficult. We walk around, weighed down with concerns even though Jesus says His yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matt. 11:30). As anxious thoughts and hopelessness take over, we not only suffer personally but also cease to be a light in the world because Christ is no longer reflected in our life. On the surface, in fact, we appear just as pressured, stressed, and fearful as those without Christ.

Although we don’t rejoice in the adversities themselves, we can find hope, joy, and peace in knowing that our difficulties aren’t in vain. God may be refining our character and melting away things that don’t reflect Christ. If we submit to whatever road the Lord has chosen for us, His Spirit will guide us and—slowly but surely—produce His fruit.

The Elect of God

“Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.” (Romans 8:33)

The doctrine of election is a key doctrine of Scripture, but it is also controversial, so any discussion of it should, mostly, let the Scriptures speak for themselves. The Greek and Hebrew words for the “elect” are the same as for the “chosen,” and it is clear that whenever the elect are mentioned, it is God, not man, who has done the choosing.

For example, Christ elected the 12 to be His apostles of His own volition. They are called, in fact, “the apostles whom he had chosen” (Acts 1:2). The Scriptures also speak of “the elect angels” (1 Timothy 5:21) and even of Christ Himself as being the “chief cornerstone, elect, precious” (1 Peter 2:6).

Most often, however, the term is applied to those who have been saved through faith in Christ and His substitutionary death, and they are said to have been “chosen…in him before the foundation of the world” (Ephesians 1:4). Having been chosen, these elect ones are then, in the fullness of time, drawn to Christ. As He said: “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him”; and He also said: “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:44, 37). Finally, to make it crystal clear who does the choosing, Jesus said: “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit” (John 15:16).

None of this eliminates our individual responsibility to “make [our] calling and election sure” (2 Peter 1:10), but the grand purpose of this great doctrine is simply this: “Base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen….That no flesh should glory in his presence” (1 Corinthians 1:28-29). HMM

Your Thoughts a Sanctuary

I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones. —Isaiah 57:15

I have been thinking recently about how important my thoughts are. I don’t have to do wrong to get under blistering conviction and repent. I can lose the fellowship of God and sense of His presence and a sense of spirituality by just thinking wrong. God has been saying to me, “I dwell in your thoughts. Make your thoughts a sanctuary in which I can dwell. See to it.” You can’t do anything with your heart—that is too deep—but you can control your thoughts….

Your theology is your foundation. The superstructure is your spiritual experience built on that foundation. But the high bell towers where the carillons are—those are your thoughts. And if you keep those thoughts pure the chimes can be heard ringing out “Holy, Holy, Holy” on the morning air.

Make your thoughts a sanctuary God can inhabit, and don’t let any of the rest of your life dishonor God. See to it that not a foot of ground is unholy. See to it that every hour and every place is given over to God, and you will worship Him and He will accept it.   TWE010-011

May my thoughts be a sanctuary, Father, where You can dwell comfortably. Amen.

God’s Mind in Human Words

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. —2 Timothy 3:16

The Bible will never be a living Book to us until we are convinced that God is articulate in His universe. To jump from a dead, impersonal world to a dogmatic Bible is too much for most people. They may admit that they should accept the Bible as the Word of God, and they may try to think of it as such, but they find it impossible to believe that the words there on the page are actually for them….

The facts are that God is not silent, has never been silent. It is the nature of God to speak. The second Person of the Holy Trinity is called the Word. The Bible is the inevitable outcome of God’s continuous speech. It is the infallible declaration of His mind for us put into our familiar human words. POG074-075

The Spirit guides us by the Scriptures, by their general principles and teachings and by bringing to us special passages from the Word, either impressing them on our hearts through the law of mental suggestion or by various ways fitted to emphasize a passage as a divine message to our hearts. ISS042

Christ the Door

John 10:9

You are The Door But I’m afraid of You! What shall I find If I should venture through?

The door to what?

To where?

I’d like to know.

The destination please,

And then I’ll go!

Through You I shall find Peace perhaps, or pain? Through You I may know Struggle, stress and strain! But answers I have anguished To find out Shall be revealed Through You I have no doubt!

The Door to Hope,

To Love,

To all that’s true,

The Door to God Himself

O Christ,

That’s You!

John Gowans, O Lord!