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Showing posts from December, 2013

Prayer Power-Day 12

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Hope in grace

13 Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1:13)

Jesus, Be the Center

This is our prayer that Jesus would be the center of all: our lives, our church, our world.  The song is a little long and repetitive, but a great reminder to keep Jesus central.


Searching for something you already have in Christ?

Below is another quote from Tullian Tchividjian from One Way Love:
Unfortunately, this (story about looking for keys that are in our pockets) is the way so many of us Christians live: searching high and low for something we already have, trying to earn something we've already been given, forgetting that everything we need, we already possess in Christ. Or perhaps it's not that we forget, perhaps it's that we prefer having the "elf on the shelf" keeping track of our every move. It makes us feel safer. We would rather work under duress than live under freedom. Yet this is precisely why we need to hear, each and every week, the basic good news that because Jesus' finished work, we already have all of the justification, approval, significance, security, freedom, validation, love, righteousness, and rescue for which we desperately long--and look for in a thousand things that are infinitely smaller than Jesus.

Prayer Power-Day 11

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Grace before ages began

8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, 9 who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, (2 Timothy 1:8-9)

Merry Christmas from the Martins!

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Wishing you a great Christmas! Celebrate the season as you remember Immanuel, God With Us!


Remember the Light of the World

Tonight is one of my favorite times of worship at Hesston MB.  And many other churches around the world have this tradition as well. We gather as a church family with many extended families joining us too.  We sing carols and hear the Word preached.  We conclude by singing "Silent Night" and lighting candles.  Hear God's Word today with the reason behind this tradition.

12 Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” (John 9:5) But then we are sent out to the world to share this light.
14“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.15Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.16In the same way, let your light shine before others, so thatthey may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.(…

God Is Able

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I started reading God Is Able by Priscilla Shirer this month.   

Here is a quote from the introduction:

"In fact, I'm more and more convinced that when He chooses to perform physical miracles in our lives--when He does what we consider supernatural and extraordinary--His chief intention even then is not to blow our minds but to cause our hearts to become more inclined toward Him and aligned with His."

Cornerstone

My hope is built. . . Christ alone.  Be reminded of our Savior.


Slow Driving, K-State Basketball, & A Blessing

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Today, as you may know, K-State played Gonzaga at Intrust Bank Arena.  Mitchell received tickets as an early Christmas present.  My brother-in-law and dad were going to meet us at the game.  However, the weather did not cooperate.  
Mitchell and I left Hesston a little after 12:30 and it was only sprinkling.  By the time, we left Newton it had just started to sleet.  Roads were still fine.  However, that all changed around Sedgwick when the roads became slick and an accident on the other side of the highway slowed everything down.  I prayed and prayed and drove slowly.  We were thankful to make it to Wichita before the roads became too bad.
I tried to find someone before leaving Hesston to use the other two tickets that were available now.  By the time we reached Wichita, I had given up on that thought since I was not going to stand around outside in the cold to try and sell the tickets.  As we approached the entrance, I told Mitchell I needed to go to "Will Call" to get extra…

Spiritual Warfare

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This might not be a typical post during the Christmas season. However, I am preparing to preach from Ephesians 6:10-18 on January 5th and so I was loaned this book.   Prince has a great style of writing and most of his books are easy to read within a few hours. 

Here are a few quotes to consider regarding  the Sword of the Spirit during spiritual warfare:

First, neither Jesus nor Satan even questioned the authority of Scripture.

Second, the basis of every temptation against Jesus was a temptation to doubt. Every time Satan began with the word "if", he called something into doubt.

Third, as I have already indicated, Jesus did not vary His method of dealing with Satan, but always used the same weapon of the Word of God against him. It is written. . .It is written. . .It is also written.



Prayer Power-Day 10

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Lord, I Need You

Here is another song to remind you of our great God and our need of Him.


Sin and God's love

The quote below has helped me understand Scriptures related to sin and God's love.  Tchividjian in One Way Love writes,
"The reason we fight sin, then, is not because our sin blocks God's love for us, but because our sin blocks our love for God and others."

Grace is sufficient

9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

Prayer Power-Day 9

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Pictures from Hesston MB Christmas Program 2013

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Obedience from grace instead of law

We have come to believe that the law is what makes us obey.  According to Tchividjian in One Way Love, that is not how it worked for Zacchaeus or his life and even yours. 
So the Law serves us by showing us how to love God and others. But we fail to this every day. And when we fail, it is the Gospel that brings comfort by reminding us that God's infinite approval of us doesn't depend on our keeping of the Law but on Christ's keeping of the Law for us. And guess what? This makes me want to obey him more, not less!

Grace abounds in our works

8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. (2 Corinthians 9:8)

Prayer Power-Day 8

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Power of the Cross

Here is another song that reminds me of the power of what Jesus did on the cross.  Listen to what it teaches about who God is.




In Jesus' name

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I finished reading through the devotion, Hidden in Christ by James Bryan Smith yesterday.  I loved it!  I would recommend it to all of you.  It is a great reminder of who God is and who we are in Christ.  It is based on Colossians 3:1-17.  It has 30 entries based on words from this passage. 

One of my favorite parts of the 30 entries is the affirmation at the end. Here is the affirmation at the end of the book based on praying "in Jesus' name."
"I am privileged to act, to pray, to minister and to do all that I do in Jesus' name. I do not act alone; I operate with the power and presence of Jesus in all that I do." May we all love others today in the power and presence of Jesus!

Law & grace from Valjean

One of the illustrations that Tchividjian uses in his book, One Way Love comes from the novel, Les Miserables.  Below is a quote from that part of the book.

If the Law is the first word, Grace is the last. Listen closely: The Law exposes Valjean (and us), while Grace exonerates him. The Law diagnoses, but Grace delivers. The Law accuses, Grace acquits. The Law condemns the best of us, while Grace saves the worst of us. The Law says "cursed", Grace says "blessed." The Law says "slave, Grace says "son." The Law says "guilty", Grace says "forgiven." The Law can break a hard heart, but only Grace can heal one.

I can't be the father of a 14 year old!

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Well, actually today, I am.  My son, Mitchell turns 14 today.  Happy Birthday, Mitchell!

From the beginning, he has been keeping us on our toes.  With his early and quick birth to his new games or languages to loving and making videos to being very passionate about sports and his activities, I am proud to call him my son. 



 Have a great 14th birthday, Mitchell!


We are under grace, not the law

14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 15 What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!(Romans 6:14-15)

Perspectives Class Coming to Hesston

Do you wonder what God's plan is for the nations and the world?  Are you part of that plan?  These and many more questions will be discussed as part of a Perspectives Class offered at Hesston Mennonite Church beginning in January.  As a pastor, I would encourage you to participate in this excellent class.  You will hear from a variety of great speakers. 

For more details, go here

Prayer Power-Day 7

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Same Power

Do you realize that the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives in you as the Holy Spirit? As Christians, let's use this power today to point people to Jesus and for His glory.


Crushed by Law

Below you find another quote from One Way Love by Tchividjian.  The purpose of the Law is to point us to Jesus.  Once we realize we cannot measure up to the Law and it has crushed us, we can rest in grace of God.
"But then, once we are recrushed by the Law, we need to be reminded . . .We need to be old over and over that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, that nothing can separate us from God's love, and that Christians live their lives under a banner that reads, "It is finished." "The Gospel declares that Jesus came not to abolish the Law, but to fulfill it. Jesus met all of God's holy conditions so that our relationship with God could be wholly unconditional. The demand maker became a demand keeper and died for me--a demand breaker.

Grace abounds more than sin

20 Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, (Romans 5:20)

Prayer Power-Day 6

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We Will Remember

Listen to who God is and what He has done!


Worship Fully

Below are notes from my sermon today at Hesston MB Church.