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Showing posts from January, 2014

Word for 2014 Scripture

As I mentioned in a previous post, my word for 2014 is God's power.  This one comes from the Hebrew word, gebuwrah.  Here is a verse to remind us of His power today:
O Lord GOD, you have only begun to show your servant your greatness and your mighty hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do such works and mighty acts as yours? (Deuteronomy 3:24 ESV)

New Book

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Pastor Brad gave me the book pictured for Christmas.  We are going through this book as a church on the third Sunday of the month helping people go deeper in their relationship with Jesus.  I look forward to the discussions.

My God by Jeremy Camp

Listen to who God is and the victory He has won in this song by Jeremy Camp:


Prayer Power-Day 17

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A final quote from One Way Love

If you read this blog regularly, you have encountered many quotes from One Way Love by Tullian Tchividjian.  Here is one final quote and how he ends the book.  Tchividjian is quoting Robert Capon:
What role have I left for religion? None. And I have left none because the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ leaves none. Christianity is not a religion; it is the announcement of the end of religion. Religion consists of all the things (believing, behaving, worshipping, sacrificing) the human race has ever thought it had to do to get right with God. . . Everything religion tried (and failed) to do has been perfectly done, once and for all, by Jesus in his death and resurrection. For Christians, therefore, the entire religion shop has been closed, boarded up, and forgotten. The church is not in the religion business. It never has been and it never will be, in spite of all the ecclesiastical turkeys through two thousand years who have acted as if religion was their stock in trade.  T…

Day with Harlem Globetrotters

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Hesston Middle School Ice Skating

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Raised to Life by Elevation Worship

I came across this song the other day and was blessed by its lyrics.  What a great reminder of what Jesus has done for us!  Turn it up and worship Jesus today.

Great grace

33 And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. (Acts 4:33)

Prayer Power-Day 16

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Read my blog post today at 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting

Today is my first post as a team member of  1 Corinthians 13 Parenting.  Check out my post about parenting out of identity in Christ here

Weekend to Remember

Have you ever attended a Weekend to Remember? If not, I would recommend the weekend to all couples. We have done the Art of Marriage (also by Family Life) at Hesston MB the last two years and will probably host again in 2015, but have not made plans for Art of Marriage in 2014.  Check out details for Wichita here or Kansas City here

When registering, please use our group name HesstonMB because for every 5 couples registered, we receive one free registration. It also allows you to register at $100 off total registration.

I will have a drawing for a free registration for the couple who contacts me via email or posts on the Hesston MB Facebook page telling me they want to attend by February 9th.

Let Pastor J.L. know if you have questions.

Read my first post as team member of 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting

As many of you know, I am now a team member of 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting.  I was humbled and honored to be asked to join the team.  Once a month I will post there instead of on my blog.    Go here tomorrow to read my post about parenting out of our identity in Christ.

Focus on God first; then behavior

Last week, I was reading several books.  One thought jumped out at me because of the different perspectives/backgrounds of the two authors.  My wife reminded me of a saying we learned from Erma Prutow at Sterling College.  Erma said "Truth is truth."  She meant the source does not matter because all truth is God's truth.

Here is the summary of what I learned from these authors: in our battle against sin and behavior, we have the order mixed up in the church.  We try to fix behavior so that we can better focus on God.  Whereas, God's Word teaches we need to fix on our eyes on Jesus first so that behavior will be fixed. 

Here are the quotes from Matt Chandler and Joseph Prince:
"What ends up happening to so many of us is that we spend so much time trying to put sin to death that we don't spend enough time striving to know God deeply, trying to gaze upon the wonder of Jesus Christ and have that transform our affections to the point where our love and hope are s…

God's dunamis

As you have read on this blog, I am focusing on the word, power, in 2014.  I found a great quote about power in Priscilla Shirer's book, God Is Able. Be encouraged by these words of the power of our God.
God's dunamis (the noun form for His power) can cause things to explode (like the demand for your product or business). It can rearrange things (like your loved one's passions). Flatten things (like your most difficult stronghold). Restructure things (like your floundering financial portfolio). Lift things (like that looming cloak of depression). And produce things (like the perfect fifth-grade teacher for your child). Your most pressing issues don't stand a change of resisting, not when God's power shows itself.

Prayer Power-Day 15

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Jesus, full of grace and truth

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)

You Are My Strength

Here is another song to encourage you today:


Believe the truth--God is able

Listen to Priscilla Shirer's thoughts from her book, God Is Able regarding the truth of God's ability.
But you cannot out-ask, out-pray, out-dream, or out-believe in the willingness and ability of God. The Father's ability to give to us exceeds our ability to ask. And when your heart is set on this truth, you're standing on a fact that will never change in a highly changeable and challenging world. It will help you sleep easier, laugh harder, and live more peacefully in the midst of trying times. So as hard as it is to deal with whatever it is you're enduring, you are walking in 100 percent truth when you turn your heart, mind, and spirit all the way toward God's ability. This posture puts you in the most receptive position of all with which to watch Him at work.

Obligation vs. Relationship

If you know me, you have heard me talk about the difference between obligation and relationship.  Many times our service for others can look the same outwardly, but inwardly can be based either on obligation or a relationship with Jesus.  The difference is huge.

Joseph Prince writes the following in his book, The Power of Right Believing:
"When you understand God's grace and forgiveness, you will understand the difference between obligation and relationship.  Under the new covenant of grace, the motivation for right living has been changed. Under the law, right living is done out of religious obligation. Under grace, everything we do today is birthed out of an inward motivation that flows directly from a love relationship with Jesus."
Do you agree or disagree?

Prayer Power-Day 14

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Happy Birthday to my favorite sister!

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Happy Birthday Abbie!  Here is a picture of us at Thanksgiving:

Grace exceeds the Law

Most object to teaching on grace because it will give people permission and license to sin.  We believe if we don't have the law, then people will go crazy sinning.  However, the opposite actually happens when people grasp the good news of grace for their lives.  Instead of wanting to sin more, they want to sin less because they understand who they are in Christ and the importance of a relationship with Him.

Listen to Joseph Prince's words from The Power of Right Believing on this topic:
"In every way when you are under grace, not only will you fulfill the commands of the law, you will end up unconsciously and effortlessly exceeding all the demands of the law!
This truth is being shared by many in the church today.  Have you seen it in your life?  Will it work in the church?

Emmanuel

I know Christmas is over, but we sang this song every week during Advent.  What a great reminder of Emmanuel-God With Us!


A New Opportunity

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Today, I am participating in Watch D.O.G.S at Molly's school.  It is a great way to serve at your child's school and provide additional security as well.

I also wanted to inform my readers that I began a new ministry opportunity.  I have joined the 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting Team.  I will be sharing more about this in the days ahead. But today, I wanted to post a picture from their Facebook page.

Gospel is for both

I resonate with the quote below as it has been part of my journey to this same understanding of the Gospel.  It is from One Way Love by Tullian Tchividjian.
Specifically, the breakthrough in understanding the Gospel to be just as much for Christians as it is for non-Christians. I once assumed (along with the vast majority of professing Christians) that the Gospel was simply what non-Christians must believe in order to be saved before advancing to deeper theological waters after their conversion. I didn't realize that once God rescues sinners, His plan isn't to steer us beyond the Gospel but to move us more deeply into it. The good news that Jesus paid it all not only ignites the Christian life but fuels it as well. As my friend, J.D. Greear puts it, "The gospel is not just the diving board off of which we jump into the pool of Christianity. . .it is the pool that we swim in each and every day."

Beholding Jesus

I am reading The Power of Right Believing by Joseph Prince.  I know some of you might question his theology.  I am reading his book (as I do with all books) with Scripture right beside me.  I was blessed by this quote today:

"Many think they have to do more in order to be more holy, accepted, and loved by God. The truth is, when you behold Jesus more and see His love, His forgiveness, His abundant grace, and His gift of righteousness purchased for you with His own blood, you will be transformed supernaturally.
Holiness is a by-product of seeing Jesus in His grace. When you see Jesus and receive His love and grace every day, your heart is transformed inwardly."

Grow in grace

18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. (2 Peter 3:18)

Prayer Power-Day 13

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Sunday Sermon: 2014-Best Year Yet

Your Great Name

Be reminded of the power of Jesus' name today.


My word for 2014

My wife was asking me this week if I had chosen a word to focus on in 2014.  She had heard about it on K-Love.  I really had not thought much about it.  But during my morning devotions on Thursday, I felt led to a specific word.

It is power. I look forward to meditating on this word and sharing Scriptures and thoughts with you about this word in 2014.  Today, I wanted to start by sharing from the Blue Letter Bible.  There are many words that are translated into power, but I will focus on two Hebrew words and one Greek word.

They are:
gĕbuwrah

Outline of Biblical Usage strength, might strength might, valour, bravery might, mighty deeds (of God) koach

Outline of Biblical Usage strength, power, might human strength strength (of angels) power (of God) strength (of animals) strength, produce, wealth (of soil)
dynamis
Outline of Biblical Usage strength power, ability inherent power, power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature, or which a person or thing exerts and puts forth power for …

Turn

Are you facing a difficult decision?  Are you stressed?  Worried? Afraid?  Are the bills overwhelming you?  Has a diagnosis discouraged you?

God wants you to turn from that thing.  In God is Able by Priscilla Shirer, she shares the truth powerfully in Chapter 2.  Here are a few quotes to encourage you to turn today:
If we expect to see God's ability in the here and now, it will require a turning. And this turning, according to Paul, is a turning to God.
Christianity was never meant to be so intrinsic. It is extrinsic. It is all about looking outward toward Jesus, not inward at ourselves.
Our enemy is the one who wants us focused on ourselves--on our humanity, frailty, and need. God, however, wants us focused on Him--on His deity, His ability, and His boundless power.
Eyes on Jesus is the Bible's proven antidote to growing weary, to losing heart, to giving up, to going down (Hebrews 12:1-3).

Happy New Year!

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May 2014 be your best year yet!  Have a great New Year.

I look forward to sharing encouragement and words of life on the blog for the year ahead.

J.L.