Archive for the ‘Christ’ Tag

RANDOM FACES

Random faces in the crowd

Seek not Christ

Nor venture where He is found

Worn expressions

Ragged clothes

Drape these people

Drenched in hopelessness

The forlorn among us

No longer thirst

To belong to society

Who knows how to reach them?

A humble group

Led by the Spirit of God

Seeking not fame nor recognition

But fine with working in the shadows

Bringing the light of Christ

To the broken souls of men and women

Patiently seeking a positive response

Laboring as Jesus did

Not thinking of self

But investing in the lives

Of those who’ve forgotten

How to be whole

Praying

Laboring

Seeking a breakthrough

Only possible while reflecting Christ

For He alone can offer wholeness

To a broken soul

 

HOW TO LIVE ABUNDANTLY

God wants you to live a rich life.  His grace is so abundant that even if you are going through a difficult time, you can still receive precious gifts from Him.

I will show you how to receive these gifts in order to make your life easier.  I will give you the steps.

     1.  Thirst after Him

God gave each of us a longing for something outside of ourselves which nothing else can satisfy.  Some may not even be aware of Christ’s ability to satisfy on a deep level.  They are totally engrossed in and satisfied with worldly things.

However, when God calls to you offering grace, come to Him.  You may be a lost soul who needs Jesus or perhaps you are a Christian in name only.  Once you drink of His living water you will never need to thirst again.

As Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well,  “whoever drinks of the water I shall give him will never thirst.  But water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life”  (John 4:14).

     2.  Come, buy what is priceless and costs you nothing

Continue to accept God’s offers of mercy and grace.  This makes for an abundant life.  And accept what you cannot give to yourself.  You are a sinner — we all are.  You cannot save yourself.  Christ died for you on the Cross of Calvary because He wants to redeem you.  “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom 6:23).

He offers you this gift of life freely.  Believe in Christ’s saving sacrifice.  It will bring peace of mind while you’re sojourning on this earth.

     3.  Come just as you are

Jesus always mingled with sinners.  He came to save sinners.  God will accept you just as you are.  He offers forgiveness of sins to those who ask.  Also, He will work with you to iron out your bad habits.  You don’t need to be perfect.  Come just as you are.

Accept Him as your Savior.  Ask Him to be Lord of your life.  Review the Ten Commandments found the Bible in the book of Exodus 20:1-17.  In prayer, let Him show you your sins.  Confess them and ponder on the grievous nature of them.  Repent of these sins, intending not to do them again.

He has promised to forgive you.  “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

     4.  Develop a personal relationship with Him

God desires a personal relationship with you.  He wants to get to know you.  He wants to lead you to truth and to an abundant life.

Fix your mind on the One who created you.  You are a wondrous creation.  God has special plans for you.  He wants you to share your life with Him.  Let your disappointments help drive you to Him.  Spend some time with Him in prayer each day.

     5.  Read your Bible daily

A wealth of truth is found in the Bible.  If you base your decisions on divine counsel found in the Bible, God will surely bless you.

The entire Bible testifies of Jesus.  Getting to know Him and learning His ways will be enriching.

“His (God’s) truth shall be your shield and buckler” (Psalm 91:4).  God’s truth helps you navigate life, helping to protect you from the snares of the evil one, Satan.  Partnering with God will defect many arrows.

God will help you endure the tough times by preserving the joy you’ve developed in your inner core.  You will have been strengthened by prayer, thanksgiving, and getting to know God through relationship and by pouring through His Word, the Bible.

     6.  Obey God

The business of Christians is to obey and follow Jesus Christ.  God’s very character is reflected in the Ten Commandments.  His law is unchanging, just as God’s character never changes.

Obeying the law habitually is born out of love for God.  “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me” (John 14: 21).

Jesus promised the gift of joy to those keeping His commandments.  “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.  These things I spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:10,11).

     7.  Follow Him

God offers the gift of peace to all His followers.  The apostle Paul taught the Philippians in these words:  “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:6,7).

To follow God, you need to make His priorities your priorities.  These priorities are spelled out in the Bible.  One of these is serving others, i.e., ministering to their needs.

Many people are unaware of their spiritual needs.  After you’ve tended to some of their basis physical and emotional needs, e.g., serving a hot, nutritious meal to a group of homeless people and socializing with them, people are more receptive to your offering to minister to them spiritually.

A follower of Jesus will share his or her testimony of what Jesus has done for them with those needing Jesus Christ in their lives.

Spreading the Everlasting Gospel to those in need of a Savior is essential as well as spiritually rewarding.

In conclusion, you endear yourself to God when you obey Him.  He delights in showering mercy upon you.

Being a follower of Jesus enables you to naturally think of others first and to find joy in serving others.

A truly abundant life on earth is found only in conjuction with providing others with the hope of eternal salvation.  One can accomplish this by testifying of Christ’s saving power found in the Bible.

Knowing Christ comes in part by reading His Word and by having a personal relationship with Him.  We need both of these.

Once you come to the living waters Jesus Christ offers, you will never thirst again.  God will enable you to find peace of mind, joy in all circumstances, and the hope of salvation found in Jesus Christ.

Scripture quotations are from the NKJV

 

 

 

PROMISES FROM GOD

I’d like to share with you a few of my favorite Bible promises pertaining to everlasting life for God’s faithful.

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thess 4:16,17).

“And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever” (Dan 12:3).

“Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out” (Rev 3:12).

The Bible is filled with many beautiful promises pertaining to blessings God will bestow on us in our earthly lives, as well. Do you have a favorite promise of God found in the Bible? Feel free to share.

—Scripture Quotations are taken from KJV—

PERSEVERANCE REQUIRED

How many times lately, outside of church, have you spoken to others about your faith in God? For myself, I do not measure up in this area. Sure, I write this blog and have written a wonderful book, THE CASTING OF CROWNS, about relationships with God in the Last Days, for which I continue to seek out a traditional publisher. But witnessing in person rather than in writing is, I think, harder hitting.

I recently accepted a volunteer position at church as a greeter. I had forgotten how satisfying and rewarding contact with people can be even while stepping out of my comfort zone. And there is no other place I’d rather help people feel welcome. But that’s just a start.

What about neighbors, friends, and family? I’ve spoken to them in the past about God, but many of them rejected God’s truths as revealed in the Bible. Some of my neighbors don’t care to go to church at all. Their lifestyles don’t include reliance on God for their needs. All I can do is befriend them, reflect Christ’s image, and pray for them. Perhaps a crisis in their lives will drive them to God’s door. In the Bible, Jesus tells the church at Laodicea, prophetically the Last Days church, “Here I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him , and he with me” (Rev. 3:20). We need to encourage others to open the door and commune with Him.

What a marvelous relationship with Jesus will ensue. He is our Redeemer, bound to offer us, as sinners, with everything we need to overcome the power of Satan. Jesus promises: “To him who overcomes, I give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne” (Rev. 3:21).

There is nothing more rewarding than leading someone to Jesus. However, it requires patience and perseverance. Never stop praying for those relatives of yours who need Christ in order to overcome. Don’t be afraid to witness to others who need caring friends to introduce them to God’s unconditional love, that healing balm which produces a sense of purpose and the hope of salvation.

—Scripture quotaions taken from NIV Bible—

ARE YOU CONNECTED

Some days I consider my choice of daily activities as mine alone, to do as I please. What a lapse of judgement! Our lives are not ours alone, but God’s, who seeks to use us each day, as vessels carrying hope, mercy, love, and examples of faith in Him to those within our reach.

Our selfish carnal natures will prevent us from doing His work. When we fail to surrender our lives daily to Him, we are prone to wander off the narrow road leading to salvation. We stray within an arm’s length of the devil, Satan. On days we forget, neglect, or willfully turn away from abiding in Christ, we are susceptible to Satan’s seemingly innocuous schemes. Satan tricks us into thinking that acting on an idea in our head will free us from God’s constraints. At that point we’re blinded to the fact those constraints (God’s Law) were given to mankind to protect us from harm.

When we neglect our relationship with God we forget or are unaware we have no strength of ourselves to obey God’s Laws. We flounder. We sin. We may feel guilt. What we do at this point is crucial. Either we continue to fill our carnal desires, or we get down on our knees to God in sorrow for our sins that nailed our Savior to the Cross. We confess our transgressions to the Lord, sincerely repent of them, and humbly receive His forgiveness.

Again in favor with God, we offer Him praise and thanksgiving. Our next step is again crucial — abiding in Christ, for He is the true vine, sustaining us through hard times, giving us strength to obey His Law, and allowing us to bear much fruit. “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).

Indeed, Christ requires us to be connected with Him. This is best done by prayer, first thing in the morning, and then throughout the day, allowing us to commune with Him as we carry out God-approved and God-inspired activities. Certainly, we don’t think about God constantly, but He is the first one we will turn to for comfort and guidance, and to offer praise and thanksgiving, when we are God focused.

He is a mighty God. Get to know Him. Abide in Him. Follow His ways. You will be blessed and bless others in ways only God can enable you to do.

— Scripture quotation taken from NKJV —

THE HOLY ONES

Who are the holy ones still standing
Before the throne of Christ the King?
They’ve washed their robes in His blood,
Fixed their lives on God’s holy will.

Illumined, they stand in victory now.
Once turned against the Lord’s holy ways,
They were then sinners like us all.
Immersed in natural inclinations
Torn away by Satan’s spell.

The King turned darkness into light
By His coming, His words, and His rite.
He lay himself upon the Cross,
A Lamb whose slaughter set us free
To join the holy ones
Yes, you and me.

GOD’S BEAUTIFUL JEWEL

The gentle way of a woman
Is one of God’s wondrous creations.
Kind in words, she brings joy to others.
Calm in voice, she is a peacemaker.
Resolved in her faith,
She raises up the young,
Giving encouragement and praise,
Showing the way to God.
Thoughtful and loving,
She focuses on others needs,
Remembering also to spend time with God,
Refreshing herself.
She builds relationships
With wisdom and forgiveness.
Sacrifices she makes for her significant other
Flow from Love.
A fruitful woman,
She remains a branch
Proceeding from the Vine,
Abiding in Christ, waiting for His lead.
Her love for God is hewn in stone,
She sparkles as a jewel
In God’s loving eyes.
She shares the Gospel with the world,
Telling of the strength and salvation
To be found in Him.
She is acquainted with God’s work
For she knows God intimately;
She knows His Heart,
She is God’s beautiful jewel.

Copyright 2007 Betsy Borchardt
Based on Proverbs 31 Woman

THOUGHTS ON CHRIST’S COMING

Christ’s first coming as an infant in Bethlehem fulfilled prophecies of old, of a Savior to come for a people He loved so, He could not let them go. God had set into action the plan He had ordained from the beginning of the worlds — the Son who came to this world to become our Redeemer, a life-line for humanity separated from God by sin. A gulf of darkness pervaded the earth. Iniquity still abounds. Christ came as our Bright and Morning Star, dispelling the darkness, calling us to Him for forgiveness, reconciliation, and life — eternal life with Him.

Christ came without fanfare, except for the angels proclaiming His birth to humble shepherds in an austere setting.

Jesus lived His life in total accordance with the Father’s will. Let us, this Christmas, be reminded of our calling as Christians: to live obedient and holy lives, sharing our faith with non-believers and expressing our love to family members, friends, and strangers alike. Perhaps we could invite our non-churchgoing neighbor to Christmas service.

What we do with the rest of our lives, whether we draw closer to Jesus or go our own way, is important to contemplate this Christmas.

Christ’s Second Coming will be soon, as the signs of the times point to. Of the signs Jesus laid out all through the book of Matthew, chapter 24 in the Bible, Jesus said: “when you see all these things, know that it is near, at the very doors” (Matthew 24:33).

As an infant, Christ came humbly. His Second Coming will be glorious and magnificently visual, for He will come as the victorious King, accompanied by hundreds of thousands of His angels, to claim His people who love and obey Him, people He has purchased with His blood.

— Scripture quotation taken from NKJV —

TO KNOW HIM

The well ran dry
Who knows the cause
Could it be all thoughts
Are straggled and lost
Flowing not from His Word

We need a guide
To stay on track
Lest we derail
Losing the oil of life
Precious God-given power
To just say no
Denying Satan a bounty
Your priceless life

Priceless souls
Christ died to save
Grab your shields now
Cling to His Word
Enter its courts
Fall before the King
In adoration
Praise and honor
Give Him your ear
Surrender your heart
Pour out your soul
For to know Him
Cleanses thoughts
Returns us to the well
That never runs dry

GOD’S LAW — JUST RULES?

What is the greatest gift we can give to the Lord? Would it be going to church weekly on the Sabbath for worship service? This is certainly one of the duties of a Christian. God looks with great favor on those who worship Him. Our duty to Him to comply with the fourth commandment is partially fulfilled by this worship of Him. The other component is ceasing work on the Sabbath. I would advise you to read the fourth commandment in it’s entirety, found in Exodus 20:8-11. It is the longest of the Ten Commandments and bears careful consideration.

Another gift we give our Lord is loving our neighbor. Truly loving, reaching out to him in times of struggle or sorrow, involves sacrifice on on part. Spending time with friends in wholesome activities that glorify God, helps developmental growth and offers opportunites for exchange of spiritual experiences. We all need to witness our faith.

When Jesus was on earth He reached out in love to thousands of needy souls, curing their illnesses, as well as teaching and healing them spiritually. When we follow His example by loving our neighbor, we please Him. Although our human abilities are limited compared to Jesus’ capacities which were aided by His dual divine and human nature, He knows we are helping Him move His work forward when we show genuine love for one another. Jesus says: “By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35).

As followers of Christ we need to attend seriously to the Ten Commandments. God gave us His commandments because He loves us immensely. He wants us to avoid sin and its disastrous consequences. He wants us to be happy. Obedience to all of the Ten Commandments is the supreme gift of love we can offer the Lord. It reciprocates the love He has for us.

But how do I keep all the commandments of God, you may ask? I am prone to sin because of my human nature. Well, there is a solution: abide in Christ. Connect with Him in prayer each day. Stay close to Him and depend upon Him to guide you all day. If you slip up He is there to help. God’s Word says: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

If we obey the Ten Commandments, not as a set of rules we have to follow, but as a deep expression of our love for God, who sent His only Son to die for us, He accepts our obedience as the greatest gift we can give Him.

(All quoted Scripture from NKJV.)

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