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Posts Tagged ‘Father’

We step forward, He steps in


How many of us know that if we are messed up or feeling weak and scared, that qualifies us for doing something for God?

Doing it scared . .
Well first of all there is no shame in feeling weak and nervous about doing something, Paul even says he took pleasure in his weaknesses!
‘… For when I am weak, then I am strong.’ Corinthians 12:9-10
Of course we mustn’t stay in that place just holding onto that as an excuse. It’s as we step forward, ‘doing it scared’, that God steps in with his strength.

‘The only way to overcome your weakness is to rely on God’s strength. To do that, you have to stop focusing on your weaknesses. You cannot look at everything you are not. You must look at everything God is. Focus on His strength and all He is willing to do for you.
The weaknesses of the world are not your inheritance. Jesus did not come to earth, die on the cross, and rise again on the third day for you to be weak and defeated. He went through all that to give you an inheritance, authority in this life and His strength to rule over your circumstances.
In any area where you stumble, God is ready and willing to provide you with His strength. So the next time you find yourself confronted by your weakness, remember and declare that where you are weak, He is strong!’ Joyce Meyer

We do our bit, God does His (giant enormous big) bit
About three years ago I began chatting to two ladies on the train to work. We got quite friendly talking about work and this and that. On occasion I did talk to them about my faith, sharing stories, I think. Anyway, I really built myself up and asked them both to come to the alpha course at church . . they both politely said no. 😦  About 18 months ago, one lady took semi retirement and the other lady left work to have a baby, so I didn’t see them anymore. Just a couple of weeks ago, the lady (with the baby) popped up in church, very enthusiastic and promising to come again! So how did that happen? Well I did my bit and honestly I thought I’d been a total failure, however, God did his work! After not seeing the lady for a couple of weeks I said to my wife that maybe I should pop round to her house and she was like, ‘No, No, God has shown you what he is doing, at least for now, let Him carry on doing it!’ 🙂

God works in our messiness
Also even in our ‘messed upness’, God does his work. On first appearances the Samaritan woman Jesus speaks to at the well, seems the opposite of anyone very spiritual  . .she’s had five husbands and is living with someone who is not her husband . .yet she says that when the Messiah comes he will tell us everything. So the least likely person in the village, the least respectable, the ignored and immoral person, actually had something in her heart and despite seeming like the most messed up person, Jesus chose her to tell all the village about him! And he chooses you and me! In our messy, busy lives God chooses us to bring His love to people!

God not only brings strength to help us, also beauty and delightfulness in the, ‘doing’, as we look to Him. His ‘favor’, makes what we do amazing, in a way we could never expect!

‘And let the beauty and delightfulness and favor of the Lord our God be upon us; confirm and establish the work of our hands–yes, the work of our hands, confirm and establish it.’ Psalm 90:17 (AMP)

As we think about these things let’s make the verse above into our own prayer

I pray you are encouraged this week

Thanks for reading

Andy

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It’s ‘The Business’ !

February 12, 2013 Leave a comment

The business of the gospel is what? We know it’s ‘the business’, but, really what does that entail? How does it feel living or doing the business in everyday life, moment to moment?

“The Lord preserves the simple; I was brought low, and He saved me. Return to your rest, O my soul, For the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.” http://bible.us/Ps116.6.NKJV

In this Psalm the person realises he is close to death and calls out to The Lord to save him. In verse 13 we read of the ‘cup of salvation’, the Psalmist knows that God offers salvation. Those of us who are saved know that he offers salvation. Salvation from the Hebrew means full and whole salvation, ie deliverance, health, aid, saved. We live in New Testament times so we know that God offers salvation.Do we know that this is not just from our sins, ie sins we have committed? It is for any sin, because God operates outside of time, it is also for any future sin. It is sin that has caused sickness so the offer of salvation is also to redeem our emotions, our hurts, our physical bodies. So why is God in ‘the business’ of saving us?
Our Father is in the business of saving us because we are his greatest pleasure! Ephesians 1:5
“God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.” http://bible.us/Eph1.5.NLT
And we were created to be in relationship with Him and for Him to be our greatest pleasure!
So, in our daily lives we should be experiencing, by the Holy Spirit, a great deal of pleasure, joy! There is nothing wrong with, as a first priority, seeking the joy of being in His presence every moment. We need to have our whole beings (body, soul and spirit) ever tuned toward our Father. So that, being ever more in His presence, we receive joy and our Father receives joy! So, ‘the business’, of the Gospel is first and foremost for us to enjoy God and Him to enjoy us, forever!
Everything else flows from this; enjoying God by His Holy Spirit. Just like Jesus did, when we have such a relationship, we hear the Fathers voice and seek to do what is on the Father’s heart. So then, why is it many Christians either fall asleep or enter a world of busyness? These are the two temptations, fall asleep, ie become a seeker after comfort, put our money on the plate, help out with church activities and expect that the vicar/pastor and/or his pastoral team will look after us in times of trouble. It’s what you might call the ‘comfort contract’! Or starting with and continuing with a right heart we seek to do God’s work . . for Him! ‘Don’t worry Lord’, we say, ‘I’ll get this one’ . . . and the next one and the next one . . ! What God is asking for is not our ‘doing’, nor a relationship where we treat Him as a recalcitrant genie in a bottle, sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t! No, He is simply looking for relationship, we don’t need to earn it! Simple, He wants to spend time in our company, he misses us when we are busy, even if we are busy doing things for Him!
For example, last Thursday, I was walking toward Salford Central station, I had had a migraine all day. Unusually, I just prayed that I would meet someone on the train I could talk to about Jesus. And I did, It was brilliant, an 82 year old chap from Wigan wanted to know what life was all about, why was he here, etc. So I witnessed to him all the way to Bolton. As we were approaching Bolton a lady in front of us turned round and said, ‘that was amazing, I couldn’t help overhearing everything you said! And you know what? My migraine was gone.Relationship, lets pray we can get focussed on that, so that our whole desire, our longing is always for more of Him. Like the pearl of great price*, do whatever you have to do to have it! Because “Return to your rest, O my soul, For the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.” Rest means, not having a rest, but, ‘resting’ in God

Dear Father, may our desire always be for more of you, more of your presence in our lives.May we always be seeking that deeper relationship and the joy it brings, through a greater infilling of your Holy Spirit. This day we invite you, Holy Spirit to fill us afresh. Amen

* http://bible.cc/matthew/13-46.htm