How does God lead?

download (5)

“My sheep recognize my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish.”

John 10:27-28  

Hearing His voice

 

As our Good Shepherd, Jesus promises that we can hear and know His voice. This does not, however, have to be some mysterious, mystical process. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that God speaks to you quite often. I would venture to say He has spoken to you lately and may be speaking to you right now in some way. 

God speaks to us through His Word. God will never lead us contrary to His written Word. It is our litmus test, our bedrock, our absolute. 

God speaks to us through circumstances. Those circumstances can include failure. Jonah certainly heard God through his mistake. God may even speak to us through tragedy or hardship. C. S. Lewis wrote that, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains. It is His megaphone to arouse a deaf world.” 

God speaks to us through His peace. When we live in God’s will, we enjoy His peace. Do you need God to make a crucial call in your life? Then listen for His peace. 

And once we have heard God’s voice, what should we do? We must follow. Jesus calls, we respond. He whispers, we move. We follow — and then we keep on listening. 

Adapted from Breakfast with Jesus by Greg Laurie (Tyndale House) pp 243-45

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

June 24, 2013 God’s Blessings

Blessings come from obeying God

What does God promise to those who obey?

Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or stand around with sinners, or join in with scoffers. But they delight in doing everything the Lord wants; day and night they think about his law. They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season without fail. Their leaves never wither, and in all they do, they prosper.

Psalm 1:1-3 NLT

ourbeliefs

 

Do What He Says

 

Believers who build their lives on a solid foundation are like the man whom a reporter found in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew. Amid the devastation and debris, one house still stood firm on its foundation. The owner was cleaning up when the reporter approached him. “Sir, why is your house the only one still standing?” the reporter asked. 

“I built this house myself,” the man replied. “I built it according to the Florida state building code. I was told that a house built according to code could withstand a hurricane. I did, and it did! I suppose no one else around here followed the code.” 

If you have built your life on Jesus Christ and His teaching, you will stand when the storms of life hit. If you are not merely a hearer but a doer of the His Word, you will endure. The true Christian — the one who has built his or her life on the right foundation — will stand the test. 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

June 21, 2013 How can I please the Lord?

Blessings come from obeying God

How can I please the Lord?

But Samuel replied [to Saul], “What is more pleasing to the Lord, your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice? Obedience is far better than sacrifice. Listening to him is much better than offering the fat of rams. Rebelling is as bad as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as bad as worshiping idols.

1 Samuel 15:22-23 NLT

If you love me, obey my commandments.… You are my friends if you obey me.

John 14:15; 15:14 NLT

 

 

True Friends of Jesus Obey Him

 

How do we demonstrate our friendship with Jesus? Quite simply, we do what he says. If we refuse, we have no right to call ourselves his friends. 

In 1 Samuel 15 the Bible tells how King Saul disobeyed the Lord’s command to completely destroy the enemies and their livestock. When Samuel asked the king why he heard the bleating of sheep and the lowing of cattle, Saul basically replied, “Oh, right, thanks for reminding me. We’re saving those to offer to the Lord later!” 

Samuel recognized a lie when he heard one and replied, “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.” (1 Samuel 15:22 NIV). God wants the same from us, not some great annual recommitment that we soon break. He wants consistency. Regularity. Faithfulness. He wants our obedience. 

Adapted from Breakfast with Jesus by Greg Laurie, 
(Tyndale House) p 162

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

 

Jesus Has Victory Over Death

Twin horses born in Georgia    Updated: Apr 03, 2013 4:26 PM CST

Born On Easter

http://www.nbc-2.com/story/21868159/twin-horses-born-in-georgia#.UWASEthtfHw

Jesus is my hope and trust

Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. How we thank God, who gives us victory over sin and death through Jesus Christ our Lord!

1 Corinthians 15:55-56 NLT

Jesus lives, and so shall I: Death, thy sting is gone forever! He for me hath deigned to die, lives the bands of death to sever. He shall raise me from the dust: Jesus is my hope and trust.

Jesus Lives, and So Shall I
Christian Furchtegott Gellert (1715-1769)

Just a happy ending?

What difference does Christ’s resurrection make? Is it just a happy ending to an otherwise tragic tale? No, of course not. Jesus had to rise, as Peter eloquently stated at Pentecost. It was impossible for death to defeat the Lord of life. The Resurrection proves that Jesus was the Son of God. Our faith is built on this solid foundation. As Paul wrote, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.…If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men” (1 Corinthians 15:17, 19). But He has risen! And as Jesus promised His disciples, “Because I live, you also will live” (John 14:19).

Without Christ, human life is merely prolonged death. Everything is decaying. But Jesus gives us eternal life, which radically changes our life on earth. Not only do we have eternity to look forward to, but we have the power to live in right relationship with God and others right now in our daily lives. Jesus is our hope for the future and our trust for each day. Praise Him!

Our “Resurrection Week” readings are adapted from The One Year® Book of Hymns by Mark Norton and Robert Brown, Tyndale House Publishers (1995). Today’s is taken from the entry for April 2.

Digging Deeper/Telling Others: For more on the meaning of Easter, read Why the Resurrection by Greg Laurie (Tyndale, 2005), also available in 6-pack for distribution.

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

 

take this message of repentance to all the nations

Hymns of victory

And he said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah must suffer and die and rise again from the dead on the third day. With my authority, take this message of repentance to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: There is forgiveness of sins for all who turn to me.”

Luke 24:46-27 NLT

The day of resurrection! Earth, tell it out abroad; the passover of gladness, the passover of God. From death to life eternal, from earth unto the sky, our Christ hath brought us over with hymns of victory.

The Day of Resurrection
John of Damascus (eighth century)

Raising a racket

It is said that John of Damascus started his hymn writing career with a funeral hymn for a fellow monk. The monk wasn’t dead yet, but everyone thought death was near. So John prepared his song and was singing it loudly in his room, testing it out. Suddenly the monk for whom is was written burst into the room and scolded John for raising such a racket. Tradition says that John was expelled from the monastery briefly for causing this disturbance, but then the Lord told the abbot that John would be doing great things with music, so the abbot welcomed John back.

And John did some great things, collecting and organizing the great hymns of the Greek-speaking church. His major accomplishment was the writing of the Golden Canon, an Easter liturgy still used in the Greek Orthodox church and from which this hymn is taken. Scholars have called his text the finest sacred poetry in the Greek language.

Our “Resurrection Week” readings are adapted from The One Year® Book of Hymns by Mark Norton and Robert Brown, Tyndale House Publishers (1995). Today’s is taken from the entry for March 30.

Digging Deeper/Telling Others: For more on the meaning of Easter, read Why the Resurrection by Greg Laurie (Tyndale, 2005), also available in 6-pack for distribution.

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

CHRIST IS RISEN! AMEN

Christ the Lord is Risen Today!

But the fact is that Christ has been raised from the dead. He has become the first of a great harvest of those who will be raised to life again.

1 Corinthians 15:20 NLT

Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia! Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia! Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia! Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia!

Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia! Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia! Death in vain forbids Him rise, Alleluia! Christ hath opened paradise, Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia! Following our exalted Head, Alleluia! Made like Him, like Him we rise, Alleluia! Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!

Christ the Lord is Risen Today
Charles Wesley (1707-1788) and others

Christ has won the final victory

The grave has been “boasting” of its power since Eden. But now it has finally met its match. It wraps Jesus up at the Cross and “forbids him to rise,” but our Champion, Jesus Christ, fought and won. Where is your sting now, O Death? Christ has won the final victory.

We know that whatever boasting we do is not in ourselves, but in the power of Christ. He has won the victory, and now we’re just soaring where Christ has led. We bask in the benefits of the Cross, and we look past the grave to our heavenly reunion with Him. Alleluia!

Our Easter Week readings are adapted from The One Year® Book of Hymns by Mark Norton and Robert Brown, Tyndale House Publishers (1995). Today’s is taken from the entry for April 3.

Digging Deeper/Telling Others: For more on the meaning of Easter, read Why the Resurrection by Greg Laurie (Tyndale, 2005), also available in 6-pack for distribution.

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House