Friday, October 31, 2014

Washed by the water

Today's thought is taken from Eph 5:26 "That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word".

  I know this verse is used in weddings and as a description about God's church but there is also a deeper principle that is sometimes overlooked. That principle is that God's word has the ability to cleanse. Most importantly, it has the ability to cleanse the inside as well as the outside!
  People who do not live for God will become tainted by this world and its ideologies. Basically it makes them dirty. Their minds and souls are deeply affected. Many times folks won't be able to describe their need but the truth is they are unclean. This uncleanness causes much discomfort and will even effect behavior and demeanor.
  Have you ever worked really hard on a hot day, sweating profusely? By the end of the day you feel downright disgusting and want nothing more than a shower to rid yourself of the filth and stench. In this situation both the problem and the solution are easy to recognize. Spiritual filthiness isn't as easy to recognize, especially if the dirty person is surrounded by multitudes of other dirty people.
   This is where you and the Word come in. God's word has been given to us, like a soapy sponge. Sometimes the person will take the sponge out of our hand and use it themselves but many times we have to apply the sponge for them. This is one of the many powers of His word. It has the ability to wash away the filth of ungodliness from a soul. It brings a fresh sweetness to the soul, regardless of its current eternal condition. They may not be ready to fully remedy the need of their soul, but they will always want some kind of relief; albeit temporary. This is why so many turn to coping mechanisms like drugs, sex, and alcohol.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Overcome by your testimony

I know I have said this several times over the past couple of years but I am not sure I have mentioned it in this blog. Sis Ranelle's latest post only awakened that inspiration within me again. The most important tool you have to witness with is your personal testimony.

You can obtain lots of biblical, historical, archeological, and scientific facts but they are useless without a testimony. People want to hear from real people who have faced real situations, and experienced real success. That is the bottom line.

Have you ever wondered why professional athletes make so much in endorsements? Kobe Bryant made over 40 million last year, just in endorsements! Here it is written out $40,000,000.00 so you can understand the impact of a testimony. That is nearly $110,000.00 a day and over $4,500.00 an hour.

I think this thought will prove to be a double blessing for you. The next time you face some tough  times or feel like God is gone, remember that you are facing this so that you might grow spiritually and so that you will have something to testify about.

Any stories of how you have shared your testimony? How about reactions you have experienced about your testimony?

Friday, July 11, 2014

Demonstration of the Spirit and of Power

Today's nugget of truth is taken from I Corinthians 2:1-5. In this text, Paul is explaining how we are to be when dealing with those we are trying to help. Far too often we limit God because of tendency to rely upon our natural skill, abilities, and thoughts.

When working for the Kingdom, it is important to realize that the Power to convince and convert comes from His Spirit and not from our abilities. The end result is a person with their faith and devotion centered in Christ(verse 5) which leads a person to truly being grounded. If they are persuaded by our personality or words this will lead to their divided kingdoom. (Mark 3:35).

Salvation has always been and will always be about men wholly worshipping God in Spirit and in truth. It is not about men worshipping other men. It isn't about your abilities or lack thereof. It isn't about what you know about God and the finer points of His doctrine. Paul simply states that it is about Jesus Christ and His crucifixion.

Truly, sometimes less is more and more is less.

Sunday, February 16, 2014


I am scurrying to sunday school as I write this but wanted to take a moment and post some thoughts in hopes of genrating some thought/input.

How would you define optimism?

What is its role/function when working with a lost or damaged soul?

What kind of power does it have?

I llok forward to reading some thoughts and possibly testimonies; SOON

Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Importance of Follow Up

It has been a long time since the last post and I have been extremely busy in that time. This post will be concise and a little "light" on the scripture references because I want to get something up that will help equip you as well as spark thought/discussion.

When it comes to gospel work you can not under estimate teh power of following up. Too many times people say, "I will......" only to never be heard from again. If you really want to impact a person, to really show them what God is like, then check back in with them regarding what you have discussed in the past.

Think about how encouraging it is when the Lord "revisits" what you told Him in prayer some time in the past. How good does it feel when someone remembers something you said and brings it back up months later? I could list more examples but I think you understand what I am suggesting.

One way to convey faith to the faithless is to check back with them, if God allows the opportunity. It indirectly communicates a genuine concern and compassion that the world knows far too little about. This is especially effective when you tell someone that you will pray for their situation. When you check back in to see how God is working, they are faced with the reality that you really believe in God and His ability/desire to work in that person's behalf.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Doors, Doors, Doors Open a plenty.

Oh that we would allow the Lord to open our eyes to see them around us. As I write this I am also actively engaged in a text conversation with an unsaved person who has a parent that is a preacher. It all started with friendly conversation where I was given opportunity to demonstrate that I genuinely cared. The particular individual tends to be reticent and introverted, but God has allowed this person to develop a trust with me. As a result we are able to grow as friends and I am also able to demonstrate the Love of God.

A couple examples from this last week and a half.

At the start of the school year I felt the Lord wanted me to start a leadership training with a couple of young men at my school. So, I went to each one individually and invited them to have lunch with me each Thursday. The Lord has given me 3 young men to work with and teach biblical principles! The door was opened because I followed God's leading to go knock on the doors.

I was able to open a gym to play basketball. I sent out texts to several former students as well as some unsaved friends. During the course of the night I was able to have several conversations with many different people. Each time I was able to remind them of past truth I have taught or lived before them, or encourage them to consider the things of God. One of them actually called me and asked me to pray for them!

A close friend of mine is having difficulty with a past relationship. I was able to talk with him and assure him that I would be praying for God to fix the situation.

My daughter woke up the other day and told me that she had a dream about a former student of mine. I plan to use that as my opening when I speak to this young man. I don't have his phone number but I plan to chase it down.

Some Keys to Seeing an Open Door:
  • Listen to what people are saying. Jesus is the master problem solver. If there is someone who has problems don't be afraid to talk to them about it.
  • Engage in conversation & listen to what they are saying. What they say will show where they are.
  • Act upon what the Lord impresses you with. A spontaneous thought about someone is all you need. It is truly simple to open a conversation by saying, "I was thinking of you. How are things going?" I'm a little more bold and usually use, "The Lord put you on my heart and I want to pray for you. How would you like me to pray?"
  • Don't be afraid to knock, even if it is the "wrong" door. You won't go to hell trying to share the love of God with someone. In fact, you may see doors open that you didn't even know where a possibility. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Open Doors

Doors are what people have around their hearts. They are a defense mechanism that is required to keep one's self from being hurt. Saved and unsaved people have them just the same.
When it comes to sharing the gospel we can't stand outside and shout. It does not work, in fact it causes alarm to whoever is on the other side. How would you feel if someone showed up to your house adn started shouting things through the door? How much worse would it be if you were alone inside? Or if it was dark and stormy outside?

To be effective at sharing the gospel we would do well to learn how to get others to "open the door." Ultimately  it is God who opens the door and we are to seek His counsel on the matter, but there are things He teaches us in this area. Here are a few things I have learned from the Lord.

Don't be afraid to share your heart. Open doors beget open doors. When you are willing to show your vulnerability it has an affect that causes others to do the same.

Just be friendly. So many doors are opened because you act in such a way that people are compelled to be around you. Remember, Jesus was a nice person who was motivated on helping others without seeking His own benfit.

Use prayer as the tool it was intended to be. Prayer changes things, even in the lives of the unsaved. When talking with people they will eventually share a concern or problem. Use that as a means to gain entrance. Let them know you will be praying about the situation.

Leave the door open! If I ever tell someone I am going to pray for them or their situationI always ask, "Would it be ok if I check back with you ......" I can't recall a single time a person has said no. This allows me access in the future.

Every person is complicated and not all doors are open within them. There is usually an "outer" door opened in casual conversation. As they get to know you, that is trust you, more doors will be opened. The length of time this takes depends of what God is diong. It can take a couple of mins or several years. Only God knows when a soul is ready and it is our job to be in unity with his knowledge.

Another way to get a door open is to find some common ground. When people talk they will eventually share about themselves, their life, their likes/dislikes, frustrattions, etc.... They key is to listen to what they are saying and find something you both can agree about or a common experience. For example.
     As a kid I was very angry and would easily get into fights. I recall a time when I saw one kid being harrassed by three kids. The injustice kindled my anger and eventually led me to beat up the biggest of the 3 bullies. Since that time I have learned how God will be my defense and I need not take matters into my own hands. So, now when I talk with people who are upset about some injustice I can relate to how they feel inside. I know those feelings intimately and often describe them to the other person.
    At some point in the conversation I share with them a better solution, in Jesus.

We could go on and on, but I want to hear your thoughts, replies, questions, or experiences.