Saturday, September 22, 2018

September 22

Ouch! God’s word is really hitting some nerves! If you’re waking up from a night of partying, today’s message is really going to sting! “Oh Lord, why did you lead me into Ephesians? I’m not going to have any friends after this!” He starts by telling us to use our time wisely because the days are evil. We all know this to be true; just read the headlines! Many years ago I saw a prediction that said that the Middle East would overtake the world, not by invasion, but by opium. Guess who produces over 90% of the world's opium? Afghanistan! How’s that for an eye opener. Now we see people on the streets walking around like zombies. This type of behavior is nothing new; there’s always been something to sedate humans. Wine was the drug of choice in the biblical days, and people would get drunk, and do salacious things that shouldn’t even be spoken of, just like they do today! We are warned against being involved in this type of behavior. If this sounds like you, then you need to stop. If you can’t stop, seek help to get your life under control, and remove the hooks that the enemy has in you. Once you’ve experienced a life filled with the Holy Spirit, you can’t get enough, He’s much better than a drug and He keeps you fully alive!

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, Ephesians 5:15-18

Friday, September 21, 2018

September 21

As we venture into this next chapter of Ephesians, I decided to get bold with God. I took my hands off the keyboard and said, “you take control for this section!” His response to me was, “I already did! Look at my scripture.” God does not mince words when it comes to sexual immorality. This includes adultery, sexual acts of a married person with someone other than their spouse, and fornication, sexual acts between the unmarried. I’m not sure how a Christian can get away with this without being riddled with guilt. If you’ve toyed around with promiscuousness, and have no guilt or feel no shame, you had better check your salvation! He is very clear that a whoremonger has NO inheritance in the kingdom of Christ. Over and over again, He tells us not to live like the world does. We get beat up pretty bad whether we do or not, but I would rather get beat by the world than deal with the consequence of going against God and His precepts. It is guaranteed that once the light of God and His holiness illuminates you, any darkness and sin will be exposed. It would be like wearing a white robe that has muddy handprints all over it, or like a pig that has wallowed in his own filth. I certainly don’t want to look or smell like that, do you? Let the Holy Spirit be your guide, He will give you warnings. You will never be tempted beyond what you can handle, you can be sure of it! Ephesians 5:1-14

For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Ephesians 5:5

Thursday, September 20, 2018

September 20

The stronger I grow in the Lord, the more I understand where Paul is coming from as he is trying to teach the Christians in Ephesus to clean up their act and walk in a manner worthy of God. This is not just for them, it is for us. This comes from Ephesians 4:17-32.

  1. Stop acting like you did before you knew Jesus. Vs 22
  2. Renew your spirit so it resembles God and His holiness. Vs 23-24
  3. No more lying. Vs 25
  4. Be angry, but then let it go. If you don’t, you leave the door open for the devil. Vs 26-27
  5. Don’t steal. Work for your money and the things you want. Vs 28
  6. Clean up your filthy mouth, or clean up your heart so that what comes out of your mouth is a good representation of Jesus. Vs 29
  7. Let go of all bitterness, wrath, anger, shouting, lying, and intention to do evil. Vs 31
The sum of this is, be kind and forgiving, because we have been forgiven by God. We are different from everyone else, we have the Holy Spirit and our lives should reflect that. Why would anyone want to be like us if our actions are like those who don’t know Jesus?

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. Ephesians 4:42

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

September 19

You have to wonder what God is up to when you are awakened at 4:45 am and cannot go back to sleep. I laid there for about an hour and decided to get up. I fixed my coffee, which I add chocolate too, and sat down to pray and study. I got distracted by the dog and dropped my coffee and it splattered all over the floor. Remember the chocolate? Now it’s in the grout! At 6:15 am, I was on my knees cleaning up a mess! The only way to get the coffee and chocolate out of the grout is bleach! It’s amazing what bleach can do! When I was finished, my floor was perfectly clean, no more stains. 

Today is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. It began last night at dark and ends tonight at dark. It is a Sabbath holiday found in Leviticus 16 and 23. Christian tradition does not usually follow along with the feasts of the Lord. However, it is important to know about them because of the prophecy that it points to. It is thought, by many Bible scholars, that the fall feast are those days that have yet to be fulfilled. These days point to the second coming of Jesus. In the Jewish tradition, Yom Kippur is a day of fasting and prayer for forgiveness of sins committed against God.

Getting back to the story; my spilled coffee, and broken cup, is a good representation of our brokenness due to our sin. Jesus is like the bleach that removed the stains from my grout. We don’t just leave a mess on the floor, we clean it up! If you have unconfessed sin, today might be a good day to go before Jesus in prayer to ask for forgiveness. Not only will you be participating in an appointed day of the Lord, but you will clear your conscience. 

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John:1:7-9

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

September 18

God called my friend out into nature, so she could hear His voice more clearly. She decided to share a portion of that experience through video, and challenged her friends to discuss it as if it were a parable. It was interesting to see how God spoke to each person so differently. She was sitting at the edge of the water and had fixed her eyes on some minnows that were grouped together doodling around in the shallow water. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw a water turkey, Anhinga, swim by. She was so enthralled watching the fish that she almost missed seeing this bird. When she looks back at the fish, they had multiplied! The message I received from this goes right along with my study of Ephesians 4. If you’ve ever watched fish swim together, you’ll notice that they swim in sync, they move together as one. Every now and then one will swim off on its own, making it vulnerable to being gobbled up by its enemy. These fish represent the body of Christ, the Anhinga represents the enemy, waiting for that one fish to get separated from the others, and my friend represents God’s presence. The Anhinga won’t come near the minnows my friend is watching over because it’s too afraid. When we strike out on our own, away from the body of Christ; it makes us susceptible to the deceitful schemes of the enemy. However, when we stick together as one, the body of Christ grows and we are safe!

I challenge each of you to spend some time alone in nature and see if you can hear God’s voice more clearly. If you invite Him to join you, He will!

so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love. Ephesians 4:14-16

Monday, September 17, 2018

September 17

As I was exploring my gifts, I realized that the way I use them comes together for this daily post. However, if I don’t stay connected by keeping a close relationship with God, through the Holy Spirit, I couldn’t write each and every day like I do. It may not always appeal to you, but God has someone in mind when He perks my interest in a subject, and He knows the words needed to draw their interest to Him. He wants all of His children to do the work of the Kingdom, and to build up the body of Christ until it matures, and is no longer easily drawn away by every crazy cult that is put in the path by the devil. Every believer is equipped with at least one gift of the Holy Spirit, and rather than continuing to try and guess what it is, do a little research and find out yours. Some “smarty pants” has figured out a way to test you to find out what those gifts are. There are a lot of questions to answer, but there are a lot of gifts. The more questions they ask the more accurate the results will be. If you keep asking God what your purpose is, maybe this is the first step to finding out. Don’t just sit there doing nothing, being tossed about by every wind of doctrine, get busy becoming a useful part of the body of Christ. If you decide to take a test today, share with us your results so we can encourage you!

And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Ephesians 4:11-14 

If you haven’t discovered your gift/gifts, there are many online tests that can give you guidance and help you see what they are. You might be surprised. As a precaution, I always go to the “About” section on any website that I visit to make sure their Statement of Faith matches my own. I suggest you do that for any online information you are seeking.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

September 16

When Jesus was carried away to die on the cross, it seemed like the war was over, and that Jesus had been defeated. The hopes of His followers were dashed. They didn’t understand that His death was just the beginning, and what He was doing would free them and deliver their sins, and ours, to the depths of hell. When He rose from the dead, He conquered hell, Satan, and all of his minions. After every battle that is won, there are spoils, bootie, treasure, that are plundered by the soldiers and brought home to their family. Jesus, being the King and the Commander, was no different. After He ascended to go back to Heaven, He gave us the Holy Spirit as comfort, like a wall around His kingdom. He had won, and we are now safe. But, that’s not all! There is treasure that has been distributed to those who are in His kingdom. Each person is given a measure of grace, distributed however seems fitting to our Savior. That unmerited favor, shows up as spiritual gifts to equip the saints for the work of ministry in the kingdom, to build up the body of Christ. You will know when it’s a gift, because it’s something you’ve had no formal training in, at least in the beginning, yet you are able. Once you know your gift, you can perfect it through training. This covers Ephesians 4:7-12.

But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ's gift. Therefore it says, “When he ascended on high he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to men.” Ephesians 4:7-8

If you haven’t discovered your gift/gifts, there are many online tests that can give you guidance and help you see what they are. You might be surprised. As a precaution, I always go to the “About” section on any website that I visit to make sure their Statement of Faith matches my own. I suggest you do that for any online information you are seeking. is pretty accurate.