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April 30, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

John 21. 25

“Jesus did many other things as well. If everyone of them were written down, I suppose that
even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

And the books continue to be written by those to whom Jesus has appeared. His appearance in the lives of God’s children are a legacy of faith, hope and love. He has a desire for you to know Him and believe in Him so that you, too, may have life. He does not wish for you to have just any life. He prays that you will have a mighty life indeed. You are a part of the stories of the many other things Jesus has done since God raised Him from the dead and broke the seal of the covenant promise to forgive those who believe that Jesus is their Christ. It is a promise that is in full effect. Your story is one of the chapters in the many books that have been written since that fateful morning of discovery. But, there are many chapters and books yet to be written. Someone in the world is waiting to read yours because it was meant to inspire them to take their own journey to Jerusalem. Perhaps they will go with you and see for themselves the wonder of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection and the outpouring of His Spirit in the ministry to God’s children everywhere. Live the story. Write the story. Share the greatest and mightiest story ever told.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those leading God’s people this weekend in worship, praise and service
* For the families of over 300 people who died in the terrible outpouring of tornadic storms
across the south, especially in Alabama which has been hit hard again for another week
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For a safe last flight for the Spaceship Endeavor
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For those facing flooding and high winds, even tornadoes in the current season of storms; may
peace reign
* Afghanistan (news of 9 Americans being killed reminds us the battle continues)
* Libya
* Syria
* Haiti
* Japan
* Mexico
* North Korea
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Guinea

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For answered prayer for rain and more to come
* For God’s coming provision for medical bills

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, thank You for making a place for these in history and allowing each of these mighty men to be a chapter, a book or a library of faith, hope and love that will inspire others to come to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior. AMEN.

April 29, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

John 20. 29

“Then Jesus told Thomas, ‘Because you have seen Me, you have believed; blessed are those
who have not seen and yet have believed.’”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

Well, by this passage from HIS WORD for today, I can easily greet you as “blessed.” Yes, the mighty men of God throughout the centuries since Jesus ascended into Heaven are numbered as those who are blessed! What a joy it is to know that the blessing of God has come upon all these men for no other reason that they “believed.” For the mighty men of God “believing is seeing.” The world sees faith just the opposite as they declare “seeing is believing.” The world is willing to put their faith in what they can see. But, even mighty men of God fall short, as we are often reminded. We cannot put our faith in man except that we believe in the God in the man who continues to work for good in and through him. What we do is put faith in faith. We “believe in believing in Christ.” This is a double positive and works to reinforce life for the mighty man of God to withstand the attacks of the enemy. As God’s mighty men move back into the world to fulfill their commissioning they must go not where they see to go as the road is before them but where they believe they are to go as the Holy Spirit of God sent by Christ reveals for them to go. Thus, the mighty men of God fulfill scripture and reveal their blessing as they “walk by faith and not by sight.” Enjoy the blessings of this day which the Lord has made; rejoice and be glad in it.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those leading God’s people this weekend in worship, praise and service
* For the families of over 300 people who died yesterday in the terrible outpouring of tornadic
storms across the south, especially in Alabama which has been hit hard again for another week
* For those impacted by the eruption of a volcano in Ecuador south of Quito, its capitol
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For a safe last flight for the Spaceship Endeavor
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For those facing flooding and high winds, even tornadoes in the current season of storms; may
peace reign
* Afghanistan (news of 9 Americans being killed reminds us the battle continues)
* Libya
* Syria
* Haiti
* Japan
* Mexico
* North Korea
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Guatemala

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For collaboration of faculty and staff through a full week of TAKS Activities to help make a
difference in students’ lives
* For God’s coming provision for medical bills

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, for the blessings we have received and for those we are about to receive, we give Thee thanks. But, more grateful are we for the opportunity to bestow the fruit of these blessings on the lives of those who will be revealed to us for ministry through the gift of the Holy Spirit. Your Will not ours be done. AMEN.

April 28, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Mark 16. 15

“He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.’”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

So you have been to Jerusalem, now what? As God’s mighty men, we will go to Jerusalem many times. One day we will all journey, or be taken to, the New Jerusalem and never leave. What a day of rejoicing that will be. But, until that day comes, we have our marching orders clearly laid out. Our spiritual Commander-in-Chief has declared “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.” Oh, we are aware of how Matthew remembered these words of Jesus before He ascended into Heaven. We call his recollection “The Great Commission.” We know of the rank change from disciples to apostles these mighty men underwent. That commissioning said, “Go into all the world and make disciples of all nations.” Great words and I believe in them though I haven’t yet been called very far from home to do so. But, Mark and Peter remember the words of Jesus differently. Yes, only the human receivers of the preached word can confess that Jesus is the Christ, be baptized and continue the cycle of faith, hope and love. However, while we can understand the word “creation” to fall in line with the later apostolic teachings of believers being a new creature and a part of the new creation, I want to challenge God’s mighty men to embrace the preaching of faith, hope and love to fall upon all of creation. When the leaders of the temple asked Jesus to cause His disciples to cease their band wagon preaching into the city of Jerusalem, He responded, “If they were quietened then the stones would begin to preach.” Yes, the stones might represent the descendants of Abraham who dared to believe in Jesus as the Christ as were being drawn to Him to be fitted to the chief cornerstone, Himself, in the building up of the true temple of God. But, it could have been the very stones that simply lined the road who had been created by God’s Holy Spirit and they would serve His purpose if no one else did. I believe that as God’s mighty men, we do have a responsibility given to us as did Adam, the first man, to subdue the earth so that it would prosper and serve God’s purpose for it in all the world. There is a distinction between earth and world. So, we have a duty in our service to God to be stewards of all creation. We might as well start preaching Jesus to the rest of creation as it has surely heard us at other times when we were less godly. Speak the truth at all times, in all ways and to all things and fulfill your full commissioning as God’s mighty men as you go along your way from Jerusalem to home through the world in all the earth until we meet again next year in Jerusalem.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For the families of nearly 200 people who died yesterday in the terrible outpouring of tornadic
storms across the south, especially in Alabama which has been hit hard again for another week
* For those impacted by the eruption of a volcano in Ecuador south of Quito, its capitol
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For those facing flooding and high winds, even tornadoes in the current season of storms; may
peace reign
* Afghanistan (news of 9 Americans being killed reminds us the battle continues)
* Libya
* Syria
* Haiti
* Japan
* Mexico
* North Korea
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Guam

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For rain across some parts of Texas under attack by wind and fire and the joint prayer of many
for more in other parts of Texas and wherever drought is severe in the world
* For God’s coming provision for medical bills

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, rejoice and be glad as these mighty men of Yours go into all the world and proclaim across the earth that Jesus is Lord, the only Lord of consequence and the only means of gaining the true peace of Heaven on earth and the keys to the Kingdom forever. AMEN.

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April 27, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 24.48,49

“You are witnesses of these things. I am going to send you what My Father has promised;
but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

It would be another fifty days until the day of Pentecost when the promised Spirit of God would be released by Christ to fall upon His disciples and future followers. The disciples would not receive name changes on a personal level but begin to be called apostles. The word “disciple” means “student or follower.” The word “apostle” means “teacher or leader.” This did not mean the apostles had learned all they needed to know. But, they were ready to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit to empower their continued ministry wherever they found themselves so directed in the presence of the Spirit. God’s mighty men must also accept that same transition in their lives as they confess Jesus as their Christ, embrace the fullness of His death and resurrection as well as manifest that truth into their daily walk among God’s people in their own spheres of influence. They no longer can clothe themselves with a “student only” status. God’s mighty men must bear witness, teach, lead and anoint those who desire to become followers of Christ with the baptism of water and fire. It is that baptism which is a “jubilee” as well. For the then disciples who would become apostles it is depicted as a literal fifty day period of time. The number became significant as a means of verifying their place in the extension of Jewish live and culture as well as the transition into the New Jerusalem lifestyle serving Christ alone. Regardless of the time it takes to reach jubilee it will come. God’s mighty men must wait for the indwelling of His Holy Spirit so they can more effectively proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ. When they receive it they cannot keep it to themselves. They need to exercise it and use it and allow it to grow stronger and stronger in their lives. The Spirit itself cannot get stronger but the spirit of each mighty man as it is manifested in his life can and will. God’s mighty men are set free, liberated by the renewal of their heart, mind and soul to truly share faith, hope and love to others as Christ has shared it with them. Enjoy your “jubilee.”

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For abandoned children that they might find safe homes
* For those impacted by the eruption of a volcano in Ecuador south of Quito, its capitol
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For those facing flooding and high winds, even tornadoes in the current season of storms; may
peace reign
* Libya
* Syria
* Haiti
* Japan
* Mexico
* North Korea
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Guadeloupe

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For rain across some parts of Texas under attack by wind and fire and the joint prayer of many
for more in other parts of Texas and wherever drought is severe in the world
* For God’s coming provision for medical bills

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, set these mighty men of Yours free to serve You and Your people throughout all the world. May all their words and works bear witness to the truth which we all must come to know, love and live- that Jesus is our Christ and we are Yours forever. AMEN.

April 26, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 24. 33b

“Peace be with you.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

(Journey to Jerusalem, Day 50)

While I will continue to write about the events which happened following Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem, His triumphant return in resurrection and His teachings to the disciples, I want to bring a particular end to this journey for God’s mighty men on day fifty (50). Yes, for fifty days we have journeyed together to Jerusalem with the Master. We have walked His walk and talked His talk. I pray we have lived His life as completely as possible each day with the reflections in His Word which His Holy Spirit has allowed us to experience. Yet, I know, and thankfully so, that we are not Christ and therefore not perfect. We continue to stumble, crumble, tumble and bumble our way through this life. We act with the best intentions and witness with the best conventions. Yet, none of us is perfect. We all have fallen short of the intended high expectation we hold and He holds for us. But, no matter what there is grace and that leads me to celebrate this JUBILEE! Jubilee was a time created by God for the beginning again in peace and prosperity. Originally, as recorded in the Old Testament, the fiftieth year was declared a year of Jubilee. In that year, all of God’s people were to return to their hometown, reclaim their rootedness in their family’s history with God, be freed of all their debts and indebtedness and live with that “begin again” fresh opportunity. I like to think that it was that sense of Jubilee that took Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem and not the taxation census, although we know we are called to honor God and the government when they call. When Jesus returned to Nazareth to preach and read in the synagogue the scripture from Isaiah to declare freedom to the captive, it was the very scripture designated for the Year of Jubilee, the acceptable year of the Lord. And as mighty men of God, Christ followers, we are able to experience our own jubilee, if we will, when we return to our homes from Jerusalem seeing all the wonderful things which the Lord has done on our behalf. If nothing else happens in our lives upon our adventure with Jesus and our renewed walk with Him through all the days of our lives, I hope that you will find today’s message in HIS Word to be the measure of how each day has been lived in spiritual success. The message is simple, “Peace be with you.” In light of all the things which had happened to, with and through the disciples during Jesus’ walk on earth including His death and resurrection, Jesus declared that they should be at peace. Without peace life becomes too difficult to navigate. The kingdom of Christ is in the midst of us. Remember how He claimed the peace of His kingdom in the midst of the storms in the disciples’ lives? Peace is the opportunity to show the power and majesty of God when the world around us is in chaos. If we are still in chaos then we must be in the world and not in the Kingdom. Even in the presence of death and persecution, Jesus remained at peace. It was said, “He was like a lamb led to slaughter.” He didn’t bleat defeat. He didn’t life a song of wrong. He declared peace in each step to the cross. He lived peace with each breath He drew. He bestows peace with every drop of blood shed for the remission and forgiveness of our sins. Some are not at peace because they cannot see a bright future. Jesus and His followers do not have a problem with that. The future is bright and secure. It is a growing light at the end of the tunnel of our journey through this world. Mighty men- “Be at peace.”

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For those facing flooding and high winds, even tornadoes in the current season of storms; may
peace reign
* Libya
* Syria
* Haiti
* Japan
* Mexico
* North Korea
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Grenada

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For rain across some parts of Texas under attack by wind and fire and the joint prayer of many
for more in other parts of Texas and wherever drought is severe in the world
* For God’s coming provision for medical bills
* For Richard’s healing being manifested as we pray

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, for the peace that surpasses all understanding we gratefully commit ourselves to living that peace today. Our hope and desire is to bring His peace to bear in the world around us as we are peace in the midst of it. Grant the strength of the peace that only You can to these mighty men in Jesus’ name. AMEN.

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April 25, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 24. 31, 33a

“Then their eyes were opened and they recognized Him, and He disappeared from their sight.
They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

(Journey to Jerusalem, Day 49)

I challenge God’s mighty men to be keenly aware of the appearances of our resurrected Lord. He continues to make Himself known to you in the breaking of the bread, in your workplace, in your times of quiet study and prayer and in your daily walk. He continues to reveal Himself so that you will be comforted, verified and empowered.

He comforts you in your times of trouble. He truly has lived through the “there is someone whose life situation is worse than your own.” But, He has made it possible for you to live a life that is far better than the one you are living, too.

He verifies you in your times of question. He is the Way, the Truth and the Life and those who believe in Him and His resurrection shall never die for sin but live for Him. He did not go through His ministry to save Himself. He died so that each one who believes will be blessed. You are worthy because of His love for you.

He empowers you to be His witness to those who are still struggling to own the truth. Each occasion of revelation is an opportunity to share the truth of His resurrection, His love and His promise with another. God has others in mind when He comes to visit you to share an insight to His glory. He believes in the power of your witness to help lead others to know the truth for themselves. Ask and He will reveal them. Seek them and He will show you. Believe and He will go with you through all the times and places of this life as He will in the next.

This is what He did with the mighty men of Emmaus and they returned to Jerusalem to share the Good News that Jesus Christ was alive and well on planet Earth.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* Libya
* Syria
* Haiti
* Japan
* Mexico
* North Korea
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Greenland

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For rain across some parts of Texas under attack by wind and fire and the joint prayer of many
for more in other parts of Texas and wherever drought is severe in the world
* For God’s coming provision for medical bills
* For Richard’s healing being manifested as we pray

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, thank you for revealing yourself to these mighty men and giving them a word of hope to share with others. As You are believing in them may their belief in You become an abundance of blessing for another. AMEN.

April 24, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 24. 12

“Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying
by themselves, and he went away wondering to himself ‘what had happened.’”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

(Journey to the Cross, Day 48- Resurrection Sunday)

He is raised from the grave! Jesus is the Christ, the living Son of the living God, whose faithfulness to His Father has opened the door for His mighty men (and women and children) to enter into eternal peace and joy. Even now as I sit here with His Word before the sun rises knowing the Son has risen, I hear the chimes singing in the early morning wind and know that they are a symphony accompanying angels in Heaven. What kind of rejoicing must there be as they affirm the recognition of Christ followers around the world who are celebrating this day above all other days. It is on this day that many are truly receiving their gift of life- eternal life. Yes, on the day of His birth there was excitement for the hope of our salvation. But, it is at His death that we know the sacrifice for our atonement was made. But, our hope for salvation was not verified until He was raised from the grave. It was then that the world began to know that this was no man of God. Instead, the world began to know that this was truly a Mighty Man of God, God’s Only begotten Son, born into the world to save His brothers and sisters by faith, hope and love from the clutches of Satan’s hands covered with sin. Praise God! Thank you, Jesus, for Your amazing strength to bear the weight of all our crosses and all our sins!

Yet, on the day when Jesus was raised from the grave, descended into hell to preach for the release of the captives and then returned to earth to reassure His followers that He was not dead but alive, Peter remained troubled. The burden of his tri-fold denial of Jesus still overwhelmed Him. He had declared to his Master that He would go to Jerusalem with Him and die with Him if necessary. But, while he went to Jerusalem, his only death was in shame and fear. Now those cloaks of shame and fear covered him holding in the chill of his heart, mind and soul. He shivered in the darkness of his own soul. What had happened? Suddenly a knock on the door sent a chill up his spine. Who was there? Why was anyone coming so early in the morning? Was it the Romans? Was it the Temple guards? Were they coming for him now? Had his denials only reinforced the truth that he was one of His? But, no, it was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James and others who were sharing unbelievable news, “Jesus was raised from the dead just as He said.” Further questions ensued from the disciples as they all began to rise out of their slumber as they did the night in the garden when Jesus was betrayed. Peter listened in his darkness as the women declared, “Two men were at the tomb who gleamed like lightning saying ‘Why do you seek the living among the dead?’” With that Peter jumped up in great hopes of finding the Master to plead his sorrow and beg for forgiveness. How he wanted to be reconciled again to his Master and his friend! He ran to the place where the tomb was and saw the stone rolled away just as the women said. But, there were no witnesses there to verify the claim. There was no gleaming light to guide him. There was only the beginning rays of sun peaking over the horizon. It was the second day of Peshach when the farmers would bring in the sheaves of grain to the temple. He could hear the carts already making their way up the rocky road to the gates. The flood of memory swept Peter into a sweat. Just a week before that very road was lined with hopeful people praising his Master as Messiah and he lead the procession. He was like a farmer bringing in the Bread of Life to the temple. And then there was the enemy again bringing him back to reality whispering in his ear, “I do not know the man. I am not one of them. Leave me alone, I have nothing to do with Him.” With that the enemy left him in the tomb, alone, with only strips of bloodstained linen to offer him solace where there was none to be found. His hope of finding Jesus, dead or alive, in order to weep for release from this grief was as empty as the tomb in which he found himself. If only someone could just roll the stone back in place and leave him captive to his own misery; but there was no one. The sun rose above the horizon and filled the tomb with wakening brilliance and he was exposed, vulnerable and alone. He looked again at the place where Jesus had been placed and wondered “What had happened?” Peter went away from the place as a shepherd unable to gather his flock of thoughts scattered across the hillside. They were all sheep now without a shepherd vulnerable to the enemy who would stalk them one by one and devour them. With each step came a question. What was to become of him? What of the disciples? What of the others? What of Israel? Soon even the sound of his own thoughts fell as silently as his footsteps as he went back to the upper room.

Remember, mighty men of God, this day we celebrate as Good News will bring troubling questions to many who will hear the message for the first time or perhaps will listen to it for the first time though they have heard it over and over again. Their lives will be in such a state that it may be difficult to process what the empty tomb means and the full impact of “What has happened?” You are called to be the witnesses of His resurrection and the fulfillment of the promise God has made through Him for all of us. Many have ears to hear but have not heard! Many have eyes to see but have not seen! Many have burdens to share but have not shared! Many have a desire to hope but dared not hope! Will you walk away from them caught into your own understanding of the moment without thinking of what is being asked of you to do? Will you bask in the reflection of the day and its revelry and worship and praise with others who are like you or will you remember that yours is the commission to go into all the world, gathering the lost sheep of Israel (old and new) and bringing them home to the Master whom you love and serve with gratitude? What has happened has happened to more than just you! It has happened for all the people of the world. Let them know it today again and be ready to bear witness when those who can respond, will.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who are leading God’s people through this Holy Week in worship, praise and
Service; and those attempting to do so in China as an outward expression of their faith
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For the containment of Ghadafi and the silence of weapons against his own people as he
considers a new roadmap to peace; for peace in Syria as new uprisings begin: are we getting
close to Har Meggido?
* We continue to bear in mind the people of Japan still suffering the ravages of disaster of
earthquake, flood and nuclear contamination with over 13,000 dead and 13,000 missing
* For those in Haiti still struggling to put their lives together and those assisting them
* For the cessation of violence in Mexico and God’s banner of love and protection over all the
people
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Greece

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For rain across some parts of Texas under attack by wind and fire
* For God’s Promise of Goodness manifested in raising Jesus from the dead
* For Richard’s healing being manifested as we pray

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, these are not sheep without a shepherd because they know that Jesus is the Christ and You have raised Him from the grave. He sits now at Your right hand to rule in justice, peace and mercy. He attends our needs by the power of Your Holy Spirit. He invites us to be His witnesses clothed in brilliant glory gleaming as the bright and Morning Star! Be praised today in prayer, in song and in worship. Hallel! Shalom! AMEN.

April 23, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 23.56

“They went home and prepared spices and perfumes (for a proper burial). But they rested on
the Sabbath (as it was evening already) in obedience to the commandment.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

(Journey to the Cross, Day 47- Shroud Saturday)

“It can wait till morning.” How many times have we said that when the day ended up being too short and the tasks too many? I know I have only to find that the next day is too long as a result. When the women who followed Joseph to the tomb to see Jesus laid to rest went home they actually had to wait through two mornings because of their obedience to the commandment to honor the Sabbath for one and the lateness of the hour due to the Sabbath for the other. That must have been a very long day to wait to provide Jesus with a proper burial. Remember how the people struggled with seeing Lazarus released from the tomb because he had been dead for three days and decay would have already begun? It is true Jesus would have only been in the grave for two days and maybe that is why they weren’t as concerned having to wait for so long. But, their wait in “mourning” would have certainly made them more anxious to get the the tomb as early as possible the very next morning following the Sabbath. Some days seem like they will never end. Sadness, sorry, unwanted expectations, grief, depression, anxiety are all events which add length to our days and burdens to our experience of them. We are asked to imagine how it must have felt to live through what must have seemed to be the longest day of their lives. Yes, the day before was certainly no picnic for Jesus and His followers but that was a day under the old covenant of death which had come to an end. Now His followers were experiencing their first day without Jesus in their midst as He had been for at least three years. Scripture leads us to consider that they had forgotten all about the “rest of the story.” They were caught in the mourning and forgot about the glorious morning which was yet to come. If they had been caught in the remembrance of the promise of resurrection as much as the women were caught in the anxiety of waiting through thirty-six hours to properly anoint the body of Jesus for burial, they might have been chomping at the bit to get to the tomb on the third day to see the fulfillment of His promise. Could they have been so literal in their understanding of the teaching “and on the third day” that they were waiting until Monday, seventy-two hours later?

As God’s mighty men who have been to Jerusalem, we are now commissioned with a question to ask God’s people- “How long will you wait until your mourning is turned into dancing?” Yes, we should be practicing our Resurrection Dance and inviting others to the Resurrection Gala singing “Glory to God in the highest and on earth- peace and goodwill to all men for Jesus is the Christ and has been raised from the grave just as He said so that we all might have life eternal free from the burden of sin which is a lingering blindness to the love, mercy, grace and power of God.” The longer we put off till tomorrow what can be done today, the longer the suffering of God’s people continues and the longer it takes us to enjoy what God has truly done for us all.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who are leading God’s people through this Holy Week in worship, praise and
service
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For the containment of Ghadafi and the silence of weapons against his own people as he
considers a new roadmap to peace; for peace in Syria as new uprisings begin: are we getting
close to Har Meggido?
* We continue to bear in mind the people of Japan still suffering the ravages of disaster of
earthquake, flood and nuclear contamination with over 13,000 dead and 13,000 missing
* For those in Haiti still struggling to put their lives together and those assisting them
* For the cessation of violence in Mexico and God’s banner of love and protection over all the
people
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Gibraltar

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For a positive doctor’s report from one of two of Lisa’s physicians; again praying for the touch
of the hem of the Master’s robe and for “this too shall pass”
* For God’s Promise of Goodness
* For Richard’s healing being manifested as we pray

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, You have given us reason to celebrate. You have called us into living a life that is worth living. You have made it possible for our mourning to turn into dancing. You are a good Father and a great God. Thank you for opening the door to Your Kingdom which knows no end and asking us to come in to fellowship forever. AMEN.

April 22, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 22.70

“They all asked, ‘Are you then the Son of God?’ Jesus replied, ‘You are right in saying I
am.’”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

(Journey to the Cross, Day 46)

“Do you swear to the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God?” We recognize that question from watching courtroom drama but rarely is it stated any longer in that form. State and federal legislatures, including presidents, of this country all have chaplains and prayer is offered to open their sessions and to provide spiritual counsel. Yet, the debate remains whether we can have prayer in schools and public events; the validity of God is questioned through the discussions of “birth” rights, holy-day celebration decorations and textbooks among other things as well as the attendance of said government leaders during any of these events. What truth are we willing to commit to publicly when it comes to our relationship with God as a person, as a people and as a nation? What voice is rising above the chaos to define our only hope and which voice is pushed down to be buried beneath the din of multi-faiths and multi-nationalism?

And we dare to think we are any different today than we were two thousand years ago? On this fateful day in Jesus’ life it was apparent that our apple has not fallen far from the tree. The same chaos and cacophonous arguments about who is Jesus still exists. Yet, it wasn’t Jesus who was really on trial that day though He was the center of attention. It was so easy to blame others for the wrongs that were done in order to disguise their own failure to act. Nowhere was it more evident than during His many trials that early morning of the last day of His life as a man on earth. It was the temple leaders, the teachers of the Law, the scribes and Pharisees and those who supported them who actually were on trial. The Roman courts continued to turn Jesus away saying “We find no fault in the man.” Why? Because, Jesus, according to Luke’s testimony, responded to their question of truth-seeking simply saying, “It is as you say.” They would not commit to defining who Jesus was for fear of their own trial and tribulations. They were as aware of the voice of the people who loved Jesus and were moved by His ministry and how public opinion played a huge role in defining who they would continue to be as leaders just as the Jewish leadership feared it. It was the Jewish leadership who turned the tables on themselves when faced with the same question as Jesus declared “You are right in saying I am.” Who was really the blasphemer? Was it Jesus who accepted the title of Son of God or those who would crucify Him because they feared He might not be the Son of God.

Two thousand years later, Christianity is still on trial though it is not guilty of any crime. God’s mighty men have been asked to stand in the forefront of every culture to lead the way into the truth about who they are in Christ and who Christ is in them. But, is it Christianity that is on trial or is it the world that is afraid that He is actually the Son of God and denying Him all this time may have an adverse consequence. Thank God that our past is judged only by the cross which provided the means of knowing the ultimate sacrifice was made for the forgiveness of our sins. Ours sins are forgiven and the challenge now is to live in the midst of God’s mercy and grace being forgiven and forgiving. The question for each of God’s mighty men is “Who do you say that He is before all men at all times regardless of the consequence?” Our answer will be our witness to faith, hope and love in all the world, before all the world. As we decide where to go to next after our Jerusalem will our voices fall silent and our commitment wane? Or shall we boldly proclaim the truth that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God and is accepted as our personal Lord and Savior?

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who are leading God’s people through this Holy Week in worship, praise and
service
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For students and educators in Texas, and elsewhere, entering into several weeks of testing
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For the containment of Ghadafi and the silence of weapons against his own people as he
considers a new roadmap to peace
* We continue to bear in mind the people of Japan still suffering the ravages of disaster of
earthquake, flood and nuclear contamination which is now reaching hyper-dangerous levels
* Preparation for the holiest of seasons and the readiness to celebrate the Key to the kingdom
leading to eternal life
* For those in Haiti still struggling to put their lives together and for those who are assisting
them and for the empowerment of new leadership
* For the cessation of violence in Mexico and God’s banner of love and protection over all the
people
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Ghana

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For a positive doctor’s report from one of two of Lisa’s physicians; again praying for the touch
of the hem of the Master’s robe
* For Good Friday

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, may the words of affirmation proclaimed by Your mighty men be strong and moving as they bear witness to the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth in Jesus’ name. AMEN.

April 21, 2011

HIS WORD FOR TODAY:

Luke 22.19

“And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it giving it to the disciples, saying, ‘This is My
body given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.’”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

(Journey to the Cross, Day 45- Maunday Thursday)

What were His mighty men supposed to do that today’s mighty men must continue to do as a means of remembering Him? They were to break bread with others and share the power of the moment of His Last Supper. His Last Supper becomes our first communion. Even before we were born, this communion was being prepared just as the Upper Room was already prepared for Jesus before He arrived in Jerusalem. He has made it possible for the bread of Passover and the cup of deliverance to be fulfilled in the presence of His mighty men. Indeed, Psalm 23 becomes a foretelling of this very meal when David sang, “You have prepared a table for me in the presence of my enemy.” Judas, who would betray Jesus into the hands of the temple rulers, sat near Jesus and shared a piece of that bread of haste dipping it into the cup of deliverance. Little did Judas know at the time how he was a part of the plan of our salvation. In some small part, God’s mighty men of today must say thanks to Judas. His act of faith put in motion the wheels of judgment by which the entire world would be measured. What are we willing to live for, die for and be resurrected to?

As each of us takes the bread and dips it into the cup today, and on any day when communion is shared, there must be a profound soul-searching asking Jesus in our heart, mind and soul “Is it I, Lord?” We have all sinned. We have all declared our allegiance to the Master. We have all said at one time or another, “I do not know Him” in hope that we have excused our sin of the moment with such a hasty remark. Judas never did say “I do not know the Man.” Quite the opposite, Judas declared “He is the Christ.” Though misguided in his expectations of the moment, it was no less the truth we must all declare, “Jesus is the Christ, our Lord and Savior.” Judas never sought to bring suffering, pain and ultimately death to Jesus. He loved Jesus and loved what He stood for. He just didn’t pay attention to the teaching that Jesus had to suffer and die in order to be raised from the dead so that each of us might have life and have it abundantly. His selective listening cannot be the same for God’s mighty men today. The manifested Messiah Judas sought is yet to come on the Last Day. Yet, it was and is the same Messiah he lived with for three years that taught peace, love, hope and faith. We must remember today the Messiah of the past and of the future. We must understand the fullness of His witness and all it requires of us as we remember Him in the breaking of the bread. We are called to remember Him with others so they will know, understand and remember Him when He returns in the fullness of His glory in the kingdom of God on earth as He is in Heaven.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who are leading God’s people through this Holy Week in worship, praise and
service
* For those fighting the Texas wildfire that has scorched nearly a million acres to date, claiming
homes and lives
* For education leaders whose challenge is to continue to provide education in the best interest
of the students while government is asking for what is in the best interest of business
* For fiscal wisdom in our nation which highlights dependence on the prosperity of God in
heart, mind and spirit than in the providence of man in words and pocketbooks
* For the containment of Ghadafi and the silence of weapons against his own people as he
considers a new roadmap to peace
* We continue to bear in mind the people of Japan still suffering the ravages of disaster of
earthquake, flood and nuclear contamination which is now reaching hyper-dangerous levels
* Preparation for the holiest of seasons and the readiness to celebrate the Key to the kingdom
leading to eternal life
* For those in Haiti still struggling to put their lives together and for those who are assisting
them and for the empowerment of new leadership
* For the cessation of violence in Mexico and God’s banner of love and protection over all the
people
* For all our troops stationed here and abroad defending the right of people to be free; especially
throughout the Middle East where the conflict is political and military but the solution remains
spiritual
* For Mission Waco and the people of Germany

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world):

* For a positive doctor’s report from one of two of Lisa’s physicians; again praying for the touch
of the hem of the Master’s robe
* For the insight to a very complicated scheduling problem and teachers working together to
make it successful

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

O Lord, it is the bread that is broken and not Your promise. Bless the bread of life and the sharing of it which happens today. Thank You for the blessing of Your promise which was shared on that evening when Jesus gathered with His disciples and taught “Do this in remembering me” and continues to be shared with us and through us today. AMEN.

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