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1859

February 16, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 17b-24

“Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

If anyone wants to know why Israel is under such attack and scrutiny, then you need to look no further than this particular passage. Samaritans were Jews themselves but had intermarried with foreign tribes. They still believed in God and the coming Messiah and held to many of the laws and requirements of Judaism. But, they were not “pure” Jews. Strange, isn’t it. Who among any of God’s people have held themselves strictly to the Law and would be called “pure” Jews, except for Jesus Christ? What Jesus taught that day to the woman at the well was in private. Either Jesus or the woman had to relate this teaching to the disciples for them to remember, share it and record for posterity. Even the disciples themselves, the chosen of Jesus to be His friends in spirit and in truth, had their faults and had not succinctly remained obedient to the Law. In fact, following the teaching of the Apostle Paul, we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Where is our purity if determined by our status aligned with the Law? Our purity is not in the Law except by the One who fulfilled it perfectly in life and in death, in faith and hope and love! Our salvation is from the Jews- specifically, the Son of God born to Mary who was deemed worthy by God in spirit and in truth.

Ah, if you haven’t seen the answer as to why Israel is under such attack by now then let me say it specifically: Satan hates salvation and salvation comes into the world through the Jewish nation. The Jews are God’s first born in the world. His covenant was first given to them. It was made with them not according to the Law, however, but by grace. It was a faith covenant which can only be determined and verified by God Himself. Only God can say who is faithful enough or not to be His son or daughter! Good news!!! No law can validate our faith. No law can refute our faith. No law can save us. The law can certainly show where we are lacking but then it merely illustrates our need for God’s grace. We must depend on Him for our life yesterday, today and forever. But, the Word of God was given to the Jews and through them the whole world knows of God. Especially it knows of God through the mighty man of Israel and Heaven- Jesus, our Christ.

Satan hates that! He is warring against Israel at every turn. He attacks her allies. He defiles their people. He infects their relationships. He is seemingly relentless. But, take heart, because the vehemence of his attack is only confirmation of their importance to God in the course of history. It is also confirmation to all mighty men that we should be lifting Israel, and all Jews, up to God in blessed prayer. We are to intercede and provide supplication for them. We are to continue to prayer God’s reign of righteousness to dwell mightily in their midst. It must continue to knock on the door of their heart, mind, soul and spirit providing them the opportunity to also confess the truth that Jesus is Lord, Messiah of Heaven and Earth. Satan doesn’t want that to happen. He knows that salvation comes from God’s covenant with His people and the blessings of that cup of promise spills out in overflowing righteousness and love to the rest of the earth. Can you imagine what promise there would really be if Israel now became Christ followers? But, what seems folly to Israel is now the blessing for the world. Their refusal to accept the truth allows the truth to go into all the world. So now you see why I saw it important to remember that it was the testimony of the woman, a Samaritan woman of poor judgment and questionable repute, who would spread the good news of salvation from the Jews, from Jesus the Christ. It would also seem that this is our same legacy as well. Share the good news that Jesus Christ is Lord.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For those who are under the latest massive winter storm: warmth, wisdom, safety and peace
* For peace and equity in the Ukraine as a new ceasefire is declared; that all parties honor it and keep their word
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of France
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* My father is showing improvement: truth and prayers are setting him free to receive his healing!
* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, may Your Word be in our hearts, mind, soul, spirit, mouths and lives as we share its truth and good news to all the world we meet today in the name of the One for whom we live, serve and pray- Jesus our Lord. AMEN.

1858

February 15, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 17b-24

“Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

A Pan American pilot flying from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Santiago, Chile, made an observation as he passed over the mighty Andes mountain range. He noticed that the higher in elevation the mountains rose the less human habitation he saw. Of course, it stands to reason that this is the truth. Resources are in short supply in the high elevations, the air is thinner and more difficult to breathe, temperatures are inhospitable and mobility severely limited. But, on occasion he would spot a small dwelling which may have been used by for shelter; perhaps shepherds. They were made of natural rock and stone to provide strength and protection against the elements. He made the comment that while man could survive in those elevations it would be a lifetime decision unless they intended to live short lives. Most of life, he mused is lived “in the world down below.”

Worship might be described as living in that rarefied air. We love the fellowship, the warm and protection of fellow belivers, the ecstasy and joy of being near to God (dare I say a spiritual high) of being in worship. Some might see those times of worship as their “mountain top” experience. They pack themselves up to a place of worship on the Sabbath of their choosing and spend time with their God. Jesus obviously would go away to his own high place, a rooftop or hill or a secret place, and pray to God and enjoy a time of worship there. I can imagine that when He spoke to His Heavenly Father they shared a language of worship all their own filled with spiritual songs and prayer and praise. But, He did not remain there. He had come to earth to dwell among men. While He was revealed in glory with Moses and Elijah on a mountain top in the presence of Peter, James and John, He did not remain there. The three disciples even wanted to build booths to honor their guests and to stay there with them longer. But, that was not the purpose nor plan for that revelatory experience. It was a moment of confirmation as to the nature, character and purpose of Jesus as the Christ. No sooner had the disciples made the offer that Jesus took them back down the mountain to engage in ministry and healing a son who was captive to evil spirits.

I mention this in context with the dialogue of Jesus and the woman at the well. She, too, speaks of mountain top worship. It had a significant place in her understanding of relating to God. She understood that Samaritans worshiped in one place as they were allowed by their custom just as the Jews worshiped God on Mt. Zion in Jerusalem. But, while Jesus recognized this human truth of spiritual reference, He quickly redirected her to the truth of authentic worship. The day would come when there would be no reason to continue such understanding of set apart worship time and place. Instead, because God is Spirit and Truth, all believers would then embrace the opportunity to worship Him in the Spirit and in truth. They would not have to go somewhere to do so. They would only have to “be” somewhere. That somewhere was Jesus Christ Himself. When we are one in spirit and in truth we are offered the opportunity to be in worship and in service to Almighty God. There may well be the need for those “set aside” worship experiences to regain perspective but where we are with Christ, He is with us. The very name given Him at His birth announcement proclaimed this truth “Emmanuel, God is with us.” Praise be to God when we can worship, praise and serve our God wherever we are. And what a privilege to relish the knowledge and wisdom of the abiding truth- God is with us wherever and whenever we are in Jesus’ name.

For the woman at the well and for us, Jesus declared, “A time is coming, indeed it now is, that we can worship Him in spirit and in truth. Be the true worshipers of God in Jesus Christ. Do not separate yourself from the world but be like Christ and put yourself into the world for the glory of God.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will lead God’s people in worship, praise and service
* For peace and equity in the Ukraine as a new ceasefire is declared
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of Finland
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* Happy Birthday to my brother, Cary!
* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, this is the day which You have made and we will worship and praise You in the name of the One for whom we live, serve and pray- Jesus our Lord. AMEN.

1857

February 13, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 17b-24

“Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

It is not an unknown fact in most all cultures that mountaintops are places equated with spiritual authority. How many look for that mountaintop experience? Jerusalem was set on a mountain. It added to its ability to be protected from its enemies. Moses went up at Mt. Sinai to meet God and receive His Word. Abraham took Isaac up a mountain to be sacrificed as a test of his truth faith in God. Jesus took His disciples up a mountain to talk to them about His true identity. On that mountain and on the surrounding mountains temples of other religions had been erected. Jesus took His inner circle of disciples to a mountaintop where He was revealed in His glory before them. The examples are numerous and I draw our attention to them. As Jesus spoke with the woman from Sychar (is this another name for Shechem?) there was a similar mention of mountain top experiences. Shechem has once been the capital of the Northern Kingdom of Israel when the tribes split from each other- ten went north and two south into Judah. It was this thought which became a part of the truth conversation between Jesus and the woman.

In those days, government and religion were not separate entities. They did not have a separation of Church and State. Sadly, the reality of this relationship often favored government as the true religion. What a dangerous “hanging in the balance” that concept is! Jesus replied to the woman’s testimony was that true faith would be proven in unity. Jesus taught “A day is coming when there will not be worship on this mountain or that because God is Spirit and His true worshipers will worship Him in the Spirit and in truth.” The truth is “there shall be no other gods before the One True God.” The King of that Kingdom is Jesus the Messiah. He will bring all people together and His reign will be in righteousness. The bounty of that Kingdom will know no end and its people will flourish and prosper. But, in order to be a part of that Kingdom you must be a citizen of the Spirit and truth. There can be no division of allegiances and understanding. There can only be One God!

Jesus came into the world because we are all like the woman at the well. We are using our efforts to sustain our lives. We have a hope in the back of our mind that God will take care of us but we trust in more of what we see than what we think. Jesus comes to reveal the truth about our lives as we know it so that we can know the truth about our lives as He knows it. His knowledge is truth and the Spirit of wisdom. He not only knows us but knows what to do with us. He gives us His truth so that we will know us as He desires for us to be and know what to do with our lives. In Jesus we become Spirit and truth. We are still flesh and blood bodies just as Jesus was all the way to the cross and to the grave. But, Jesus was more than that because He was the embodiment of Spirit and truth. That is the truth for us as well. Our worship cannot be bound to a certain time and a specific place. We must worship God wherever we are. We must reassess our lives and align our actions and our intentions to be opportunities to worship and serve the Lord with gladness, the fulfillment of hope.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will lead God’s people in worship, praise and service
* For peace and equity in the Ukraine as a new ceasefire is declared
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of Fiji
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, reveal to us more about who we are in Your eyes so that we can become better worshipers and servants in Your Kingdom in the name of the One for whom we live, serve and pray. AMEN.

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1856

February 12, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

Interesting that the people were believing that Jesus was the Messiah, the Savior of the world, because He was able to tell them about their past. Our past is not a secret withheld from the Son of God. Our past manifests itself in our present day and can certainly influence our journey through the days ahead. For the mighty men of God, our lives have been determined by a past event as well. Yes, the decisions good and bad which we have made in life but also, and most importantly, the event of the cross. Our decision is to believe that event happened and for the purpose of our salvation. Jesus’ decision was to change the course of history and life for us all by going to Calvary to die on a cross. He knew our past before we did. He could see into the future and embrace our past so that we could get past each day and step into the future of His glory and grace.

It is amazing that He knows all things. We can be humbled by the places where we find the checkpoints of life marked with the awareness that God was with us. If not for the grace of God where would we be now? But, what should draw us more to Jesus is not that He knows our past and everything we did (and how much of that do we wish He didn’t know). No, what should draw us more to Him is that He knows our past and loves us still and calls us His own. He forgives. He forgets. But, He only forgets our past and never His promise for our future. When we walk by faith and not by sight it is because we are walking away from our past and into our future. Each day is an act of faith believing in the power of God’s love to forgive and forget. In truth, the more we focus on that part of our future we meet each day the less we focus on that part of our past we leave behind. One day, the past will all be forgotten because we will see the cross of Christ clearly and it will not let us look back only ahead. You might say, life is looking up from there.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For peace and equity in the Ukraine as a new ceasefire is declared
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of the Federated States of Micronesia
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, reveal to us today another part of Your Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven in the name of the One for whom we live, serve and pray. AMEN.

Post tags: , , ,

1855

February 11, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

There was one crying in the wilderness, “Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight paths toward Him.” That was, of course, John the Baptizer who was fulfilling the prophecy of Isaiah calling for the new kingdom identity which comes with the Messiah. While the Messiah was coming into the world, those who desired the Messianic kingdom should make their effort to come to Him. The honus is upon humanity to beat a path to the door of Heaven. Jesus is the door and He has given us the keys of the Kingdom which opens that door. The gospels would record His words to Peter, “I have given you the keys of the kingdom and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed and what is bound will be bound.” The expanse of the Messianic ministry is in our hands. Its blessing, power and benefits are available to those who come to Him and call upon His name as Savior of the World. Isaiah declared in his prophecy that these things should happen so that the whole world could see God’s salvation, His saving effort.

Those who heard the word of one crying in the wilderness did not hear John the Baptizer nor the Prophet Isaiah. They heard the words of a woman with a broken reputation reduced to drawing water to sell to others so she could live. She declared that she no longer needed to live as she had but that she could live free from her past and beat a path to her glorious future with living water freely available to her. In response, they beat their own path to their future of freedom and blessing. They were tired of the struggle to live in disaffection grasping only a single hope that one day God’s Messiah would come. They made their way. It didn’t mean they engaged a local construction company to pave a new road for them to Jacob’s well. No, they set out with a determination to go and see this Jesus of living water who knows all there is to know about people including a more certain future. They made arrangements to get there whether by foot or beast or wagon. They came as they were from all stages of life and in a variety of conditions. Some may have even been carried there just so they could see Jesus.

No matter what, mighty men of God, the life of discipleship requires effort on our part. Jesus comes near to the lives of men but men must determine for themselves to come near to Him. He may stand at the door and knock but someone must answer the door and open it to Him. He may walk on the road of life with us but we must invite Him into the conversation of our lives and dialogue about our hopes, dreams and desires for living water. There may be hindrances and roadblocks that stand between us and Him but there must be a decision made to overcome them. He will do the rest to measure up to and exceed our determination and situation. But, we must do something! We must make the effort to see, believe and receive.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For peace and equity in the Ukraine
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of the Falkland Islands
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God has made it possible for our car to be repaired
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, we COME to You for living water. Meet us Lord and receive the adoration and thanksgiving we give for the fulfillment of our hopes, dreams and desires to be free in the name of the One in whom we live, serve and pray. AMEN.

1854

February 10, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

The truth is clear- Jesus died for the sins of the world and thus is the Savior of the world. He is not the Savior of any particular culture or nationality, and nation or tribe. He is the Savior of the world. He has the authority of God to rule and reign over the peoples of the world. He is a beneficent leader. He cares for everyone. He seeks them out by His Spirit which is in the body of Christ, the Church, to give them the good news of a great joy. It also means that His authority will include judgment. He hates the sin and loves the sinner. But, those who receive the benefit of His Kingdom are those who share this truth with Him- hate sin, love the sinner. No one will escape His authority over life and death. He knows both intimately. He has been there and done that!

What does that mean? It means that we all will stand before the Judgment Seat of God. Christ will dispense the truth to His Father concerning each person. He will separate the sheep and welcome them in from the goats whom He will send out into the wilderness of Hell to die forever. Harsh? Cruel? Just? Fair? It is the truth and the truth can set us free. It can liberate us from the tyranny of sin and its devastation of right relationships. His provision still affirms the gift of freewill which His Father gave to the world. God’s intent was for us to choose Him and serve Him only. But, it allows for the alternative but not without a consequence- a serious consequence.

That consequence, or penalty, was exacted even upon Jesus the Christ. He who was without sin was numbered among the transgressors for our sake. He was judged by man to be guilty of breaking man’s laws pretending to be God’s law. In His death, the chain of the law was broken. It could not bind God’s people any longer from His presence. So great was God’s love for us that He sent His Son to take on this task of dying for all so that all could live for Him. It is key to recognize the word “could.” It is still a choice we must make to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, a mighty man of God. He is the “mighty man of God” who lives today because of the Father’s love for us all. Those who recognize Jesus as the Savior of the world and seek to follow Him all the days of their lives will see the fulfillment of truth and live with Him forever.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For peace and equity in the Ukraine
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of the Faeroe Islands
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, we need You and accept the gift of love and grace which You have offered freely to us in Jesus as the Christ. We choose this day whom we shall serve- it is Christ the Lord, the Savior of the world in whose name we live, serve and pray. AMEN.

1853

February 9, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

I just love how the Holy Spirit can reveal so much of God’s truth in the midst of few short verses. These truths which I have seen and desired to share with you are in HIS WORD for each and every day. They are like gemstones buried in the ground to be found by those who seek them out where they can be found. Mighty men, we have more effectiveness mining for the truth of God than for riches and power in this world. The true power and riches are in God’s Kingdom truth. Why do you think Jesus spent so much time talking about the presence of the kingdom of God in the midst of us? Is it not because He was sent into the world to bring the truth to light for us so we could see what God has done? Of course it is because God loves us so much. He created the world for us and not us for the world. We are the masters of the worldly creation, its caretakers, just as Jesus is the master of all creation and its caretaker. He is the truth and wants to be found! He wants to be found in us, by us and through us for God’s glory and the welfare of humanity.

And it is this “human” element that I saw in these verses today. It is critical to our life’s prosperity and to its ministry to see this truth and to embrace it wholeheartedly. God does not condemn the flesh but honored it by sending His Son to be in this world as a flesh and blood being. He desires that there be an authentic relationship between Himself and us! Because He knows that rules without relationship fails to make a significant difference in how we conduct our business of living in the world, He sent His Son to be born of woman and live in the world side by side with God’s people on a daily basis. It is critical and important in accessing the blessing of God that we must accept and confess that Jesus of Nazareth is indeed the Christ of God! Until we are able to wrap ourselves around this concept of the Man of God, we fail to see ourselves as truly worthy and capable of doing great things in the Kingdom of God on earth as it is also being done in Heaven. The people of Sycchar who came to hear the truth about their own lives because of what the “woman at the well” shared with them concerning Jesus confessed the “Man of God” they believed was the Savior of the World.

There is so much to be gained here:

1) Jesus was born of Mary in the line and out of the house of David just as scripture foretold. He did not just appear on the seen. He was not an image or holigraphic representation created to fool our eyes into believing He was real. Jesus was a real man living in the world just as you and I do.

2) Jesus was a mighty man of God. The power and wisdom of God knew no age limit. As an infant He inspired shepherds and kings with His innocence and purity. As a boy He inspired His parents and the Elders to embrace the deeper truth of God’s word for our lives.

3) Jesus was a son of a mighty man who taught Him to use His hands and create works that served the needs of others. It became the foundation of Jesus’ teaching that we must do the work we are called to do and not simply talk about our faith as if it were merely a hope received at some future time. Faith and works are now!

4) Jesus suffered the hardships of human relationships in the matters of trust, pain and empathy. Those hardships only cemented His desire to bring life to those whom He loved as He Father loved. It also led Him to embrace the reality of His purpose as the ultimate sacrifice for our sins. He had to die a physical death on the cross and be raised from the dead by the loving power of God. Our salvation could happen in no other way! We must have faith! But, when our faith is connected to the tangibles of our lives which include death then it is known and seen as real by ourselves and others. Salvation is not just talk- it is a walk as well. A walk with a cross to Calvary for each and everyone of us.

5) Jesus is the “God Man” as well as the “Man of God.” This means He desires to make it truth for us that we are “God men” and “men of God” also. It wasn’t just about Jesus. It is about us. The gospel is not just about Jesus. It is about us as well. The Word became flesh and dwells among the peoples of the world so it can accomplish His purposes in the earth. It is about our relationship to God and to one another. It is real and tangible, flesh on flesh and life to life. Jesus is the truth and made the truth available to us. The truth was always there but we have to see it for ourselves and believe it so that we can receive it.

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For peace and equity in the Ukraine
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of Ethiopia
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for needs on my family now that far exceed our ability to handle on our own- we need God’s intervention

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

* God is good all the time and all the time God is good- even when we cannot see it!
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, thank You for trusting us with Your truth made real in our flesh as we profess Jesus of Nazareth as our Savior in the world. Help us to understand the depth and breadth of this truth so that the blessing, power and glory be put into action in and through our lives for Your purposes in the earth. As we believe Jesus is the Christ, so we must believe, too, that we are mighty men of God created now in His image as He was created for us in Yours. AMEN.

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1852

February 6, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

I want to thank God for those who have shared the word of His truth with us. We each have a person or persons who have taken the time to lead us to Jesus because they knew for themselves that He is the Christ, the Savior of the world. It was their testimony of faith, hope and love that opened the door for us to step into the throne room of God and be introduced to mercy and grace. There are those who still lead us in our discipleship to new rooms of spiritual intimacy and challenge as we grow stronger in our faith and deeper in our conviction to be mighty men of God. We thank God for them!

But, the truth is that it cannot be by their faith we are saved. It is by our faith in Jesus alone on our own that makes the truth real in our lives. This is an important factor to remember as we serve God in and through our daily lives. We can be as faithful as we can be. We can create a home or workplace that exudes righteous around us but that does not mean our presence there becomes the faith statement for others. Each person must confess Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. They must come to believe in Him for themselves. Until they have ownership of the truth and then are owned by it, it exists in their world but not in their lives. Those who have borne witness help to create the culture and environment of believing just as Jesus did for the woman at the well and then she, in turn, for those who heard her testimony and came to listen to Jesus and then believed. But, their statement is true, “We do not need your testimony any longer because we have heard and believed for ourselves that He is the Savior of the world!” Each time one of those individuals makes their profession of faith the heavens explode in joy! It is important that the mighty men of God continue to create, cultivate and nurture the culture and climate of righteousness and the opportunities to meet Jesus for ourselves and others. But, our joy cannot be complete until those that have been given to us have the opportunity to hear for themselves and declare “I believe because I believe. I receive because I believe!”

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For those leading God’s people in worship, praise and service this weekend
* For peace and equity in the Ukraine
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of Estonia
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for proactive oncology reports which now include the confirmation of cancer for me requiring surgery on February 16

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

* My dad has been moved into a private room for a few days before being placed in rehabilitation; I have a good doctor and my condition is in good hands- his and God’s
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, bless all those who are walking with Jesus and talking about and in His name so that their witness they share will be a powerful invitation to come, see, hear, believe, listen and receive Jesus as Lord and Savior of the world. AMEN.

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1851

February 5, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

Here is a truth that I must pour over myself- “what have I left behind to follow Jesus?” The stories told of the calling of the disciples include leaving vocations and families behind to take on the journey of being a follower of Jesus. The woman at the well “left her water jar” and went to tell people in Sycchar to “come and see and hear.” Jesus taught “no one has left behind family, homes, land for My sake and for the gospel who will not receive a manifold blessing in return.” How can you measure that return? Is it in more lands, homes, family and wealth? Is it at the personal or corporate level of our lives that we receive this blessing? Are we leaving everything behind to be a blessing? That would seem to indicate not leaving anything behind for the sake of the gospel but for the sake of gain.

At the moment, the woman and the disciples did not count the cost of what was left behind. Instead, they found it as joy to share what they had truly received- hope and the promise of a new life. The world cannot authentically offer this. It is a fleeting hope and temporary life that the world offers. It is bound in an ethic of not leaving behind but giving to others in the hope of receiving more- it is a scam. But, Jesus offers truth about our lives as we seek to live in Him. It is a not a matter of what am I leaving behind that I will miss but what will I miss if I don’t sieze this opportunity to have the life I was meant to live! Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Whatever we may lay down in order to take up the cross cannot compare to what we will receive in this world or the next we when live for Jesus and come alive in Him. Jesus Christ Himself is the evidence of this because we can see Him before the cross and after the grave as He moved from glory to glory!

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For peace and equity in the Ukraine
* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of Eritrea
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for proactive oncology reports which now include the confirmation of cancer for me requiring surgery on February 16

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

* My dad has been moved into a private room for a few days before being placed in rehabilitation; I have a good doctor and my condition is in good hands- his and God’s
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, give us the strength to release our hold on the things of this world to rise up and take the cross of Christ as our own in the name of Jesus. AMEN.

1850

February 4, 2015

HIS WORD for Today:

John 4. 28-30,39,42

“Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” They came out of the town and made their way toward him. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

We have become such a visual society and base much of our thinking on “seeing is believing.” We have convinced ourselves that there is the need for signs and wonders to validate and become evidence that our faith position is without question. John places before his audience, and that includes us today, this kind of thinking and how it stands in opposition to the very truth of the Messiah Jesus Christ. It is not that Jesus did not perform signs and wonders, He did. It is the strength of the truth that the WORD alone should be sufficient to meet our needs. Even in the story of the woman at the well, the Samaritans in Sycchar and any who were in that town at the time believed because of what the woman said. It was the testimony she shared in word and not deed that brought others to hear and listen to what Jesus said. John introduces Jesus as the “Word of God” which was the light of knowledge and wisdom that the darkness of ignorance and doubt could not overcome. Chaos did not obey God in the beginning of the beginning because God was there. Rather, it was because God spoke into the chaos a word that commanded order, structure and obedience that life came into being.

The evidence of that truth is what happened in response. There was an obvious change in the woman. But, it was not the change in her demeanor that moved them but her words “He told me everything there is to know about me.” And how easily it is for us to assume the meaning of that phrase as being “everything wrong.” It is easy for us to see the fault in others. Jesus made mention of that with the parable of the “speck in someone else’s eye we speak of while ignoring the log that is sticking ouut of ours.” We can see the wrong in the world. Our news media and too many of our conversations are filled with negatives. Rather, we, as mighty men of God, must first speak of the good which is in a person because we live in the state of forgiveness. Our past is the past- forgiven and spiritually forgotten. Today, we will in the beginning of new life born out of the Word of God which we profess after our confession. Even David, when we sang laments before God and sheep and the people of God, spoke praise and the promise of good following his confession of what he knew was wrong and misguided. The woman may well have spoken of all the things Jesus knew about her past. Most of the people in the city may have known the same- it was no secret. But, what was more important is that He told her the rest of the story- the truth about who she was in God’s eyes. The gospel, even the Law, speaks of what is good about people who believe in God. It delivers the truth about who we are, who we are becoming and what we can do. Paul writes, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” We can believe because we can see faith in action but until we say it for ourselves, “Lord, live in me” then nothing else matters.

Speak the truth in love about love, mighty men of God. Let your words and actions be harmonious in the ears of man and God and they will desire to not only come and see, but come and listen and be saved. Remember, faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God!

“Let HIS TRUTH be seen (and heard) in the mighty men of 2015.”

PRAYER CONCERNS: (Needs of God’s mighty men that will be answered out of faith, hope and love)

* For the end of Boko Haram and their reign of terror and murder of innocent men, women and children
* For the defeat of the terrorist rebels, ISIS, and the immediate cessation of the beheadings used to terrorize, humiliate and publicly challenge global powers to give in to their demands.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and that open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede on behalf of God’s people and plant the seed of faith, hope and love for a harvest of new life
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land,” Marlin High School and the people of Equitorial Guinea
* For the needs of my family near and far and our friends; especially the breaking of addiction chains binding them; for proactive oncology reports which now include the confirmation of cancer for me requiring surgery on February 16

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

* My dad has been moved into a private room for a few days before being placed in rehabilitation; I have a good doctor and my condition is in good hands- his and God’s
* God continues to give me insight into my relationship improvement and blesses me with a wonderful gift in love
* God continues to answer my prayer for wisdom by presenting me with truths for my life to share with others

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, thank You for speaking truth into our lives and empowering it to be evidenced in our words and deeds in the name of Jesus. AMEN.

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