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PUSH PANIC

I hadn’t planned on posting anything today, thought I’d ease back in gently after my long hiatus. Seems God has other plans though.

Ever been in a sticky situation? Ever been afraid? John 6:20&21 says follow these steps and you’ll be fine.

1. Get rid of your fear. Christ commanded the disciples not to fear when they saw him walking on water and panicked. Because they were afraid they couldn’t think straight and there was no room for anything else in that boat, so Christ did not get in yet.

2. Be willing to take Christ into the situation understanding that He will take control of it. There is no point driving a car forward if someone else has it in reverse as well. Surrendering control to Jesus is necessary to resolving the issue.

3. Relax. Note that once the disciples took Christ into the boat they immediately reached the shore of their destination. May it also be well with you.

If you’re wondering how to engage Christ in all this don’t fret; this is what He was meant to do – search and rescue, salvation and redemption. This is why God sent Him in the first place; that He May draw men unto to Christ.

Think About This

Has my panic pushed Jesus out?

Prayer

Dear Lord, draw me unto Your Son even in my most challenging moments. In Jesus name I pray, Amen

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CROSS INTO LIFE

All power belongs to Jesus. We all say it glibly, but have we thought thoroughly of what it means? John 5:22 caught my eye – “Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgement to the Son,” I’ve always thought of Christ as an intercessor so the thought of Him as a judge is a little scary for me.

You see, when my children get up to high jinx I’m often the intercessor and a calming influence on their father. Then there is the rare occasion when whether their father is there or not I play the enforcer’s role and all hell breaks loose. Without a moderating influence (He’s usually shell shocked by my rage), my wrath and judgement rains down without mercy.

When Christ no longer sits on that Mercy seat and pleads our case, but takes His place as Judge over us on that last day would we really have a case? He was our intercessor! He did everything He could if there is fault then it is in us. He came to die that we might live, He gave an example that we might know how, He left the Holy Spirit behind that we might not struggle so much and just in case He still pleads our case. Yet we still choose to go our own way; like sheep (Isaiah 53:6). In dishonoring Christ we dishonor God.

When Christ met the cripple at the pool He asked him directly if he wanted to get well. What a strange thing to do! The man had an obvious need and he was in the place to fix it, surely Jesus could see that? And yet the man’s answer was not as direct as the question; he gave an excuse as why he had not been healed yet.

Many of us are comfortable where we are, so although we make the outward appearance of progress, our inner condition is different. God sees that. Christ wasn’t being mean when he asked a cripple to get up. In today’s politically correct world, I’m sure someone would have protested and asked Jesus to chill, give the guy some time or at least a hand up. Maybe even a shoulder to lean on as He guided Him to the pool. But Christ gave a sudden command, saw it was obeyed and then disappeared. He later showed up to check on the former cripple, it was then that He gave gentle guidance.

Some of us are at the sudden command stage of our lives, others at the disappearing stage and some are receiving gentle guidance.

With all the care and attention Christ is dedicating to us now as He serves as our intercessor, do we have an excuse, a reason not to make it to Heaven? Verse 24 of John 5 gives us great hope; “Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes Him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.” (NIV)

Think About This

Will you cross over from death into life?

Prayer

Dear Lord, May I get up, pick my mat and walk. May I be well again having crossed over from death into life. Forgive my sins, may I look to You as my life example that I may sin no more, but rather live under the shelter of Your protection. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

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RUST FREE PIPES

I woke up this morning with a terrible thirst, no surprise then that my personal Bible study took me to John chapter 4. Christ is the Living Water.

Can you imagine if Christ indeed was literally water that permanently quenched thirst? Big Business would bottle Him up so fast and slap a huge price tag on him after creating an artificial water shortage that the world population would drastically reduce. And yet here He is a free gift to the world; rejected.

Christ’s promise of eternal water supply involves internal plumbing not external delivery. Anyone who has even seen how intricately pipe are laid out for plumbing work can tell you it is delicate, involving and tedious work. Before the tap is turned on and that precious liquid begins to flow the pipes must be laid first. That’s the period most of us can’t go through and we walk around unfinished with our pipes clanging against each other annoyed at the noise and the blockage. Sometimes we try to fix it ourselves and end up making an even bigger mess! Call Christ; He is great in a crisis and besides He who started a good work in you will be faithful to complete it (Philippians 1:6)

The woman at the well was in a desperate situation. Scholars have assessed her situation severally; some say she was a prostitute, others a several cohabitor, whatever the case they agree that her moral life was not up to code and as such she was a social pariah. Why else was she fetching water alone in the middle of the day when all the other women did it as a group in the cool of the day? How else did she find the boldness to question not only to a man but a stranger she acknowledged as a Rabbi? Why did she have questions ready; had she been mulling over them for a while? She sounds a lot like myself when caught between a rock and a hard place. She was ready for a Saviour ( but she had to get Him first – to be sure, you know). That’s why she grabbed her chance when she saw it. Living Water? I won’t have to deal with all this again? GIMME!

Of course that meant a whole life change; the laying pipes must begin for water to flow. She expressed concern about whether the pipes needed to be in a certain direction or made of particular material. The answer? What matters is the water and how clean it’s kept. That answer remain true for us too. In verses 23&24 of John 4 Jesus clearly tells us not to quibble over denominational, doctrinal or any other differences. We are asked to focus on one thing only; worshipping God in spirit and in truth. Those are the ones who catch God’s eye. That how you keep the pipes rust free – through honest worship. God wants to see the sincerity of your heart, open and on display. Just as the Samatritan woman put hers out. That’s how He can fix any broken pipes and get the Living Water flowing again. All you need to do is ask.

Think About This

Do you thirst yet again? Perhaps you the Living Water.

Prayer

Dear Lord, I need You the Living Water to slake my thirst. I lift up my cup Lord, please fill it to overflowing so others may taste the drips and bring their own cups. In Jesus name I pray, Amen

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A LOVE RESCUE

You need to be in tune with God to see His point of view. That’s why His Holy Spirit works within us to restore and reset us the original plan. Baptism is the beginning of this process; the entering into a new life. For many it is entirely different from everything previously known, for all it is being born afresh.

A lot of people think Christians are judgmental Bible thumpers; I’m too caught up in the awesomeness of why God sent His Son in the first place to be distracted. Despite all of our sin and wickedness Christ didn’t come to point an accusing finger at us ( John 3:17 MSG), but rather came on a mission of love to redeem us; calling us onto Himself that whoever would respond would be saved. People ask; “If God really loved us all and indeed was all powerful why not just save everybody at once instead of waiting for us to come to Him?” You see, The thing is, sin is a choice and therefore redemption must be a choice also. Through Adam we are all condemned yet through Christ we are all redeemed.

In receiving Christ we gain fullness of life, in rejecting Him our take home is eternal damnation. Don’t get it twisted though; the Christian life is NOT strawberries and cream on an easy path. If anything life will get harder, but God promises you will not bear that load alone and you will not bear more than you can carry. If Christ already carried the weight of the world’s sin and sickness for us what won’t He take on for us?

Think About This

Would you like to ask? Place your burden before the Lord.

Prayer

Dear Lord, You came on a rescue mission of love just for me and I am grateful. You came so I wouldn’t have to suffer anymore and I can’t say thank you enough. I choose You as Lord and Saviour of my life, please help me to follow Your word everyday so that others may choose You too. Amen

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WATER OR WINE?

Life is not a race. Most people do things in a certain way and follow a pattern but God has chosen a different path for you. Experts will look at your life story after Christ has touched it and made a difference and they won’t be able to explain how you stand out but they can’t deny it either.

The world will want to know your secret. But can they handle it? Can they deal with the crucified, buried and resurrected Christ? Can they deal with the Holy Spirit in all His amazing power and authority who raised Christ from the dead and who is at work in you? It may take a while for the wine to finish but the temple will be rebuilt in 3 days.

What is normal to man will run its course. For some it’ll happen quicker than for others. As humans we will definitely run into trouble at some point in our lives. When that crisis moment comes will we attempt to fix it ourselves or will do whatever Christ asks of us? Following Christ’s instructions turns the mundane, dull, ordinary things in our lives into exciting, sparkling, extraordinary occurrences. Obstacles become steppingstones, challenges and suddenly opportunities, water is turned into wine.

Although the price is paid for us on the cross. There is still the waiting period for the resurrection. Christ said in John 2: 19 that should the temple be destroyed He would rebuild it in 3 days. He made reference to His resurrection but also to work He had to do in our hearts. There is nothing God cannot do including instant answers to our prayers, yet often there is a wait period between asked and answered. For the supplicant it may seem like the 46 years it took to build the temple or indeed an eternity. In reality it is but the 3 day resurrection pause during which the condition of our hearts is adjusted. It only seems longer because we resist it so much.

Think About This

What are you sipping on; water or wine?

Prayer

Dear Lord, I want to drink deep of Your wine and be drunk on Your Holy Spirit. May I surrender myself to You as You mold my heart to what it ought to be. In Jesus name I pray, Amen

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A RETURN AND A WELCOME

John 1: 12 is an open invitation for all peoples to come to God. It’s up to us to make the decision to accept it or not. The process is as simple as believing in His name and receiving the adoptive rights to become God’s heirs and all the benefits therein inherit.

Christ is recorded as having come down in the flesh full of grace and truth. This was to show us the character of God our Father, as no one has ever seen God yet we have His Son; the Living Word in the flesh among us.

What an example for us on how to live our lives, especially in this present age when grace and truth seem in short supply.

Think About This

Are you open to the invitation or undecided?

Prayer

Dear Lord, I come with an open heart to You. Amen

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THANKFUL FORGIVENESS

Think About This

Forgiveness is hard. That’s mainly because we fixate on the hurt against us. When we give thanks for the lessons learned, situations avoided and lives saved, it becomes more bearable to think of the offending party in a forgiving way. It’s hard, and just when you think you’ve forgiven you’ll probably have to start again. But that’s no reason not to try is it?

Prayer

Dear Lord, Teach me to pray in thanksgiving even for those who hurt me. In Jesus name I pray. Amen