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Archive for the ‘encouragement’ Category

Paul wrote a letter to the believers in Rome.  We come to know it as an epistle where we can find words like justification, redemption, and others that explain our prior condition as slaves to sin and the gift of our salvation.We can find key phrases in the Book of Romans such as “all have sinned,” “filthy rags” and “how shall they hear without a preacher.”. Yet, by further exploring the Book of Romans, we can discover a key verse of inspiration.

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can  be against us?” (8:31, NKJV)

How can anyone be against us with God on our side? How dare Satan attempt to dreceive and detour the saints of God when we have the backing and full fledged guarantee of the Almighty working on our behalf?

Believers need to believe that God has their best interest in mind and at heart, even in His hands.  No demonic or satanic force or tool can devise a scheme strong enough or wicked enough to defeat God’s purpose and plan for us.  He is on our side.

Satan desires to destroy us and devour us.  He seeks to separate us from the love of God through Jesus the Christ.  He does not want us to embrace the idea that he cannot defeat us due to God who “is for us.”

Never expect the worldly and carnal people around you to encourage so.  Let loose of any idea of “good people” doing good deeds foe the good of all without any inkling of God actively involved in their lives.  Know that you cannot put trust in man who can do no good thing. As long as you have God who is love is on your side, for just as He told the prophet Isaiah, you will fully understand that the help of man is useless.

God is on our side.  Nothing can separate us from the bond that we have with Him.  Jesus sealed the deal with His sacrifice of blood and we entered a new age covenant with God, receiving the indwelling of His Holy Spirit upon our acceptance.

He is on our side.  Who can be against us?

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Haunted houses and ghosts are about to become the seasonal rage once again over the next month or so.  Folks really get into Halloween.  I guess if getting the hell scared out of you is the point then perhaps more evangelicals should use scare tactics and haunted sanctuaries to grab the world’s attention.

But seriously, let us consider that those things that haunt us are oftentimes from our own past.  They are either things that we did or things that were done to us.  Both hunt us down in our sleep and haunt us during our waking hours.

Yet, imagine your past hurts helping you.  If your abuse-filled childhood helps you help runaway teens and teen moms without prenatal care, let it do so.  Past and personal struggles can make making it hard or they can open your eyes to numerous opportunities to advance and broaden the kingdom of God as you work through some of your own pain and struggle.

Pray for freedom from the dominance of your past demons over your life.  Fend off the persecution from your past.  Let it help you.

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There are times in our lives when we just have to agree to start expecting more.  We cannot simply keep accepting the status quo.  Something has to change.

Why not change your perspective on life?

As a Christian, you may not escape the pains and heartaches of this life.  Pain will come.  Heartaches will happen.  That is life.  Yet, how we live our lives is what should separate us from the rest of the world.

Start changing how you approach matters in life.  Let each be met with eager anticipation, expecting God to do marvelous works right before your eyes, right in the midst of your presence.

Start meeting your days with expectancy.  Start watching God do His best for you and through you.

Oh, and by the way, be ready.

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For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say. – Luke 12:12 (KJV)

The Holy Spirit has a serious job to do.  Jesus explained that to His disciples right before He departed this earth.  Many theologians have studied and researched about the Spirit.  Yet, we still have some trouble with the whole concept of the Holy Spirit.

Realize the Holy Spirit’s power and work.  The Holy Spirit teaches and takes us to task.  He is the Comforter.  He is the Helper.  He reminds us of what the Father has commanded of us and what Jesus has provided for us.

Let the Holy Spirit:

  • Work on you like the power He has to exhibit as part of the Godhead.
  • Work in you through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit baptized within you at the point of belief.
  • Work through you in a powerful way that allows others to see God at work through your good works.

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Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. – Galatians 6:9 (NIV)

If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small. – Proverbs 24:10 (KJV)

We need to be on fire and remain on fire in the work of this ministry.  When we lose our fire, we burn out and begin to flame out as we eventually end up running on fumes.  That should not be the case for us since we have the Helper, the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, with us to help us and guide us.  Yet, we still experience such times.
We need to see how our downcast countenance can impact others, especially when we stand before the congregation or sit at the board table.  We need to understand that we have to do more than simple show up and serve.  We need to be mindful of our affect as we serve the Lord day by day.

Let us not look for a reward here on this earth.  The pay will never match up to the sacrifice.  The benefit package will never equate to the blessings that you have to bestow upon others and to witness with your own eyes.  You will never get the kudos or respect that you deserve, but you have a reward awaiting you in heaven that is great and bountiful.  Just hold on and don’t get weary and worn out.
 
“Set a man on fire and people will come from miles to watch him burn.” –John Wesley.

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“Accept God’s will in every situation.” – Andrew Murray
Things happen.  If you read it on a bumper sticker, you would probably get another version of what happens.  We just have to come to grips with the reality and fact of the matter.  Things just happen.
Things happen that are out of our control.  Things happen that are caused by our bad decisions.  Things happen because of what do or don’t do, what we say or fail to say.  Things happen.
We have to learn to accept God’s will.  We cannot simply toss around the notion that Satan is out to get us every time that we come across an uneasy situation.  We have to realize that God’s will is perfect.  He allows things to happen, even to us as his children, so that He may get the glory in the outcome.  He is always at work.  He may be working on us before He ever works it out in our favor.
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trialsJames 1:2 (NASB)
God is able to work everything out.  He has a plan that is carried out through His will.  Both are perfect.  His will is perfect and so is His plan.  How He works it out will work together for our good and His glory.
 

Read God’s Plans for You by Andrew Murray and discover some of the unique things that God desires you to through your life and your ministry for His glory.

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How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.

– 1 Corinthians 14:26 (KJV)

Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. – Romans 15:2 (NIV)

Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, – Ephesians 5:19 (NIV)
But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. – 2 Timothy 4:5 (KJV)
Our work is to dispense the Word into the world.  That sounds simple.  However, that is only the main thrust of what we are called to do as God’s people.  We have to have some tactics to go along with our teaching.  We need some methods to go along with our message.
 
Paul’s instructions to Timothy in one of his pastoral epistles states that Timothy should do the work of an evangelist as well as fulfill his ministry.  It didn’t mean that Timothy was to simply evangelize in any manner or method that he saw fit.  The directive exemplifies the teaching and training necessary for a newly-established pastor in maintaining his station as spiritual leader.  If no one else can lead someone to Christ in that local church, the pastor better be able to walk someone down the Romans Road to salvation as part of the work of an evangelist(my understanding of the Holy Spirit leaves doubting that He would leave any of His churches so barren and fruitless, though).  Additionally, he should be able to teach and train others in biblical methods in reaching others for Christ.
 
Encourage others along the way.  If you simply leave it at we all have sinned and fallen short or that the wages of sin is death, you just left someone dangling in suspense and plagued with wonder until worship service on Sunday.  That’s not evangelism.  It surely isn’t encouraging either.  That’s a scare tactic.  Some of our people have mastered such techniques.  Rather than seeking what the Lord has to offer, people are turning to Jesus as the way to avoid going to hell.  Some of our brothers and sisters are persuasive in literally scaring the hell out of some folks rather than sharing the unsearchable riches of Christ.
 
We need to spend some time encouraging folks in the Word.  We need to use methods and mannerisms that build up people rather than manipulating them into a twisted-arm decision about what to do to gain eternal life.  Jesus didn’t use that methodology.  That wasn’t how John the Baptist did his evangelistic work.  Paul surely did not force anyone to accept Christ in such a way.  There is a way to reach someone for Christ and encourage them by your words and other things.
 

  • Encourage with your words
  • Encourage through your works
  • Encourage by your ways

As I have shared before, people may need to see more Christ in you before they hear anything about Christ from you.  Live it out and let it be known.

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