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God’s Wisdom for Daily Living
94 Posts
March 16, 2008 - 2:03 am

Like Riding A Bike
By : Ron Luce

Have you ever met someone who acted like they really knew how to do something, but after a little while, you really started wondering if they did? Sometimes that's how it is when you talk to someone who says they're a Christian.

They're kind of a Christian in their head, but have they really met Jesus? They say they have a "personal relationship" with Him, they say they've gone to church their whole life, they say they've prayed the salvation prayer, but the way they talk about God makes you wonder if they've really ever met Him.

How would it be if you were trying to tell someone how to ride a bike, having never ridden one yourself? You've seen people ride a bike, you've talked to other people who have ridden bikes, you've read books about riding bikes, but you've never ridden one yourself.

Yet somehow you think you know enough to tell someone else how to ride a bike. That's what some Christians are like. They don't know what the Bible says about a personal relationship, but they talk about a personal relationship. They may even know scriptures about having a personal relationship, but have they ever really met God?

Sometimes it bugs me when people say they have a personal relationship with Jesus. Think about it for a second. If you're close friends or best friends with Joe, do you say, "I have a personal relationship with Joe?" No - you say, "He's my best friend." But we couch our Christianity in words like personal relationship so we can feel like we have something with God when maybe there's not much there at all.

We look at praying a prayer of salvation in such a casual way. With our hands in our pockets, we scuff our feet and say, "Yeah, I sort of have this relationship with God," but have we ever really met Him? Could we accidentally meet Michael Jordan and say, "I think I have a personal relationship with him?" If we had ever met Michael Jordan, there would be no question in our mind who we met and how well we knew him.

If you have really met Jesus, you won't be saying, "Yeah, I have a personal relationship," in a real drone kind of voice. No, the time you met the King of kings and Lord of lords will stick out in your brain for the rest of your life! It will have riveted your heart to His heart and you'll remember forever that that was the day in history that changed your life forever. From that moment on, you were never the same.

"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name" (John 1:12 KJV).

We say we have received the Lord in our heart, but what does that really mean? Do we somehow let Him come inside? The Greek meaning of the word receive means to get a hold of, to seize, to obtain, and to take hold. (See James Strong's, The Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible (Nashville: Abingdon, 1890), "Greek Dictionary of the New Testament," #2983.) The point is, we don't sort of receive the Lord, and we can't sort of have a relationship with Him. We are to take hold of Jesus.

Think about the bicycle example. Jesus doesn't want us to be talking about the bike, He wants us to ride the bike. He doesn't want us to tell people it's a really neat thing to have a relationship, He wants us to have a relationship. He wants us to get connected, to grab hold of Him and not let go.

Have you ever seized Jesus? Have you taken hold of Him, or are you kind of talking about Him just like you would be talking about a bike you've never ridden? Today is the day to get on the bike! Today is the day to seize Him, to grab a hold of Jesus with every bit of energy you have, to wrap your life around Him and never let go. Describe the time you seized Jesus - even if it is right now.

Source: Spiritual Shock Treatment by Ron Luce.
Excerpt permission granted by Teen Mania Ministries

94 Posts
March 10, 2008 - 6:21 pm

The Nose Of A Bulldog
By : John Mason


Persistent people begin their success where most others quit. We Christians need to be known as people of persistence and endurance. One person with commitment, persistence, and endurance will accomplish more than a thousand people with interest alone.

In Hebrews 12:1 (NIV) we read: "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." The more diligently we work, the harder it is to quit. Persistence is a habit; so is quitting.

Never worry about how much money, ability, or equipment you are starting with. Just begin with a million dollars worth of determination. Remember: it's not what you have, it's what you do with what you have that makes all the difference.

Many people eagerly begin "the good fight of faith," but they forget to add patience, persistence, and endurance to their enthusiasm. Josh Billings said: "Consider the postage stamp. Its usefulness consists in the ability to stick to something until it gets there." You and I should be known as "postage-stamp" Christians.

In First Corinthians 15:58, the Apostle Paul writes: "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord." Peter tells us: "Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless" (2 Pet. 3:14). And wise Solomon points out: "Seest thou a man diligent in his business? He shall stand before kings..."(Prov. 22:29).

In the Far East the people plant a tree called the Chinese bamboo. During the first four years they water and fertilize the plant with seemingly little or no results. Then the fifth year they again apply water and fertilizer - and in five weeks' time the tree grows ninety feet in height!

The obvious question is: did the Chinese bamboo tree grow ninety feet in five weeks, or did it grow ninety feet in five years? The answer is: it grew ninety feet in five years. Because if at any time during those five years the people had stopped watering and fertilizing the tree, it would have died.

Many times our dreams and plans appear not to be succeeding. We are tempted to give up and quit trying. Instead, we need to continue to water and fertilize those dreams and plans, nurturing the seeds of the vision God has placed within us.

Because we know that if we do not quit, if we display perseverance and endurance, we will also reap a harvest. Charles Haddon Spurgeon said, "By perseverance the snail reached the ark." We need to be like that snail.

Source: An Enemy Called Average by John Mason.
Excerpt permission granted by Insight Publishing

94 Posts
March 5, 2008 - 7:58 pm

Start Speaking Faith Now
By : Kenneth Copeland

"Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things" (Matt. 12:34-35).

Words won't work without faith any more than faith will work without words! It takes them both to put the law of faith in motion.

Many believers don't realize that. They'll continually speak words of doubt and unbelief, then they'll jump up one day and say a couple of faith words and expect mountains to move-and to their dismay, they don't.

Why not?

Because as Matthew 12:34-35 says, it's the words that come from the heart that produce results. For the person who just throws in a couple of faith words now and then isn't speaking them from the abundance of his heart, they won't be effective.

Does that mean you shouldn't start speaking words of faith until you're sure you have the faith to back them?

No! Speaking words of faith is good spiritual exercise. If you want to receive healing by faith, for example, fasten your mind and your mouth on the Word of God where your health is concerned.

Instead of talking about how miserable you feel, quote Isaiah 53:5. Say, "Jesus was wounded for my transgressions. He was bruised for my iniquities. The chastisement of my peace was upon Him; and with His stripes, praise God, I was healed!"

If you'll continue to meditate on those words and continue to say them, the truth in them will begin to sink in. They'll take root in your heart and begin to grow. And eventually you really will be speaking from the abundance of your heart.

When that happens, it won't matter what the circumstances look like. You'll know you have what you've been believing for and the devil himself won't be able to talk you out of it. You'll cross the line from hope to faith, and you'll start seeing those mountains move!

Scripture Reading: Matthew 12:33-37

Source: From Faith to Faith Devotional by Kenneth and Gloria Copeland
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

94 Posts
March 5, 2008 - 1:33 am

First the Believing, Then the Having
By : Mark Brazee

"Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them" (Mark 11:24).

We are to pray, believing we receive our answer; then the answer comes. But well-meaning Christians say, "Well, you know, I have trouble believing I have something until I feel it." These people say, "I'm not going to believe I'm healed until I feel better. I just can't believe I've received anything I can't see."

In case that thought has ever come to you, let me ask you this: Do you believe you have a brain? Have you ever seen your brain? That may seem like a strange question, but it proves a point. You have no proof that you have a brain. The anatomy book says it's there; a doctor may say it's there. But otherwise, you have no proof.

When you stop to think about it, about 80 percent of the things we believe are accepted as truth without feeling or seeing them. I know when I was going through school, I believed what I read in the history books. For instance, I wasn't around when George Washington was alive, but I believed the history book when it said he was our first president.

We need to attribute more credibility to God's Word than we do to history books. Sometimes we're willing to believe anything we read except the Bible; then we say, "Lord, give me a sign."

We have to believe we receive; then we will have. First comes the believing; then comes the having. When we operate in that kind of faith, we'll get so excited about believing for our answer that we will forget to check to see when it actually manifests!

The blessings God has provided for me come to pass in
my life. I believe I receive the healing I've asked of Him.
Therefore, I shall see healing manifested in my body.

Source: Prescription for a Miracle by Mark Brazee
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

94 Posts
March 1, 2008 - 10:17 pm

Doing Philippians 4:6
By : Kenneth Hagin

"Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God" (Phil. 4:6 AMP).

A minister once came to me for advice. There were many storms in his life, and I felt sorry for him. He couldn't eat or sleep.

Just to sympathize with him wasn't enough, so I had to read Philippians 4:6. "But everyone doesn't have the faith you have," he told me. "Yes, but they have the same Bible," I replied, "and it's a matter of practicing the Word."

Then I showed him how to practice the Word: I read a verse aloud and then told the Lord, "Your Word is true, and I believe it." When I first started practicing this verse, I believed I could make my requests known to God, but it was hard for me to believe I could keep from fretting. However, God won't ask us to do something we can't do. So when God said not to fret, this means we can keep from fretting.

So I say aloud, "I refuse to fret or have any anxiety about anything." Then I bring my requests to the Lord and thank Him for them. This quiets the troubled spirit the devil tried to make me have. If the devil tries to get me to worry again, I simply go back, reread this verse, and keep claiming it.

Confession: I am a doer of Philippians 4:6!

Source: Faith Food Devotions by Kenneth E. Hagin.
Excerpt permission granted by Faith Library Publications

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