Put God first!

 Money  Comments Off on Put God first!
Jan 202018

We meet people and get mails all the time from organizations asking for donations.
And we just get confused.

We want to help.
But how do we decide where we ought to give?

We can’t support everything.
And we know our little bit doesn’t make much difference anyway.

Do you remember the widow in the Bible who only had two very small coins to give to God’s work?
In the eyes of most people her gift was useless.

But Jesus commended her to His disciples:
“This poor widow has put in more than all the others” (Luke 21:3).

Why did Jesus say this?
One reason was because in God’s eyes it wasn’t the size of her gift that mattered-
– but her attitude of sacrifice and love for God.

In addition-
Jesus knew that God could take even the smallest gift and use it for His glory.
And the same is true for us.

If Christ is first in our lives, our desire will be to support His work in every way we possibly can.
Is this your goal?

Ask God to guide you in your giving!

You can’t support every cause that comes your way-
– nor should you try.

But you can seek God’s will for your giving-
– asking Him to direct you to give to those that need it most.
-it is not your money,
– but God’s money you are giving Him back.

Pray too for those organizations-
– that God will help them use their resources wisely and carefully.

Above all, seek to follow the Bible’s teaching in your giving:
“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).

May this be true for you!
And it will be, as you put God first in your life!


Do not let this happen to you!

 Communion with God  Comments Off on Do not let this happen to you!
Jan 192018

“…they were unaware of it” (Luke 2:43).

Jesus was 12 years old.
Mary and Joseph travelled to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover.

They were evidently very distracted by the excitement and business of the Feast.
In fact, Mary and Joseph began their return trip to Nazareth only to realize well into the trip that Jesus was not with them.

It would be three days before they would be reunited with their 12-year-old son.
It caused quite a scare in Mary and Joseph, and they reprimanded Jesus for “wandering” off.

As a parent, I find this story truly amazing.
How can parents of the Son of God not know their son is not in their presence?

Yet this story illustrates how each of us can become so busy that we continue to operate not realizing that Jesus is no longer with us.
Obviously, there was very little fellowship taking place between Jesus and His parents during the trip.

Are you experiencing daily, even moment-by-moment, fellowship with Jesus?

If not-
– you will wake up one day and realize Jesus is not with you in your endeavors.

It may, like Mary and Joseph, create a certain fear in you that you may have lost a very important relationship.

Doing business without Jesus’ presence-
– leaves us powerless and prone to live in fear.

Jesus said He would never leave or forsake His children.

– we can walk away from His fellowship by refusing to be with Him.

Do not let this happen to you!

He longs to have daily fellowship with you because He loves you!


Switching off Jesus?

 Getting Right with God  Comments Off on Switching off Jesus?
Jan 182018

“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined. For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given…” (Isaiah 9:2, 6).

The Sunday school children were making their annual presentation of the Christmas story.

Parents were proud.
Grandparents were sentimental as they reminisced about Christmases past.

All had gone well until.
There is always an “until” in a children’s Christmas presentation.
All had gone well until they reached that time to show the holiness of the newborn Saviour.

Mary and Joseph looked suitably significant.
The shepherds had hit their marks and were on their knees in a position of worship.

At the right moment-
– the student who controlled the lights was to throw all the switches but one
– that single switch controlled a small light bulb placed in the manger.

The light from that single source would be most impressive for the folks watching, at least, that’s what was supposed to happen.

– the boy who was to turn off all the lights but one got rattled.

He hit all the switches.
The congregation, thrown into pitch-blackness, sat in stunned silence.

That’s when one of the shepherds, a third-grader, said in a whisper that carried through the entire church:
“Hey! You switched off Jesus!”

For that boy, “switching off Jesus” was an accident!

In Jesus’ day there were many people who “switched off the light” Jesus wished to give them.
The inn keeper, Herod, scribes…

Today there are also those who willfully turn off the light the Saviour brings.
In their ignorance, they deliberately deny and disregard the Lord Jesus who has come so they might have joy and peace.

They keep the light turned off.
They cannot say, “You are my Saviour and my Lord.”

It is the Lord’s wish and will that you walk in the light of the Saviour.
If Jesus had been born one thousand times in Bethlehem, yet has never been born in your heart, then you will, on Judgment Day, still be lost.

That would be a terrible and unnecessary tragedy-unnecessary because Jesus came into this world to save you from such a sorry ending.

Jesus was born so that you might live in the light and not grope in the darkness of sin and Satan.
So you could be in the light, Jesus spent His entire life doing what you could not.

Switching off Jesus?
Or walking in His light?


Many people miss this!

 God's love, Obedience  Comments Off on Many people miss this!
Jan 172018

“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” (John 15:10).

What is the greatest proof of your children’s love for you?

Is it when they say they love you?
That’s great.

But it’s not proof.
Really, it’s when they obey you…willingly.

Many people miss this!
They say they love God, maybe even go to church regularly.
But there is little evidence of real love for God in their lives.

A recent poll showed that 80% of Christians believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God.
That same poll reflected that more than 70% felt every individual has to decide right or wrong for himself.

That is-
– saying one thing
– and doing another.

Jesus said:
“If you love Me-
– you will keep My commandments!”

The proof of our love is-
– our willingness to obey God and His commands.

Doesn’t it make you feel great when your child willingly obeys you?

Why don’t you give God the same joy?

Obey Him because it’s your desire to do so.
Love Him like you want to be loved by your own child.


Can we hear from God?

 Communion with God  Comments Off on Can we hear from God?
Jan 162018

How can we recognize the voice of God?
Can we hear from God?

This question has been asked by countless people throughout the ages.

Samuel heard the voice of God, but did not recognize it until he was instructed by Eli (1 Samuel 3:1-10).
Gideon had a physical revelation from God, and he still doubted what he had heard to the point of asking for a sign, not once, but three times (Judges 6:17-22, 36-40).

When we are listening for God’s voice-
– how can we know that He is the one speaking?

First of all-

We have something that Gideon and Samuel did not.
We have the complete Bible, the inspired Word of God, to read, study, and meditate on.

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

When we have a question about a certain topic or decision in our lives, we should see what the Bible has to say about it.

God will never lead us or direct us contrary to what He has taught or promised in His Word (Titus 1:2).


To hear God’s voice we must recognize it.

Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27).

Those who hear God’s voice are those who belong to Him—those who have been saved by His grace through faith in the Lord Jesus.

These are the sheep who hear and recognize His voice, because they know Him as their Shepherd and they know His voice.

If we are to recognize God’s voice-
– we must belong to Him.
And we must follow Him.


We hear His voice when we spend time in-
– prayer,
– Bible study, and
– quiet contemplation of His Word.

The more time we spend intimately with God and His Word-
– the easier it is to recognize His voice and His leading in our lives.

Employees at a bank are trained to recognize counterfeits by studying genuine money so closely that it is easy to spot a fake.

We should be so familiar with God’s Word that when God does speak to us or lead us, it is clear that it is God.

God speaks to us so that we may understand truth.

While God can speak audibly to people-
He speaks primarily through His Word, and sometimes through the Holy Spirit to our consciences, through circumstances, and through other people.

By applying what we hear to the truth of Scripture-
– we can learn to recognize His voice!