Saturday, 31 March 2018

Isaiah 53:5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: The chastisement of our peace was upon him; and by His stripes we are healed.

I see in a lot of moments I still find myself not seeing what Jesus has done for me and allowing that to shape the way I move and think. I lose site a lot and it’s quite discouraging when I think about it. I see a bit of an issue with my temper being roused and I see a lack of patience and long-suffering . With that, obviously theres a lack of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. That being the case, there’s a lot that could be causing this but the bottom line is a broken fellowship with the Lord. Not that He has left or forsaken me but that there’s somehow a distance probably due to sin. At this point, the only thing I can do is ask God to seek out my heart and if there’s any wicked way within me that He would reveal that to me and help me move forward in the way that He would call me. I need the Lord to make straight my path. For that I see Him using this verse “He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities:” I see this and I’m in awe that I can allow myself to fall into such a place that I can be so far from the standard that God calls us to live. I also understand that I’m my own worse critic especially if I allow the enemy to throw things at me. So I must push on and move forward looking unto Jesus knowing that He paid it all and is not holding my sin over my head but wants me to move past what’s holding me back. I will press on boldly asking for forgiveness humbly and allow Him to shape and mold me submissively. I can’t be a fool and turning from correction and rebuke, but growing in patience and long-suffering when He reveals the error of my ways by taking heed to them.
Application: I will ask my teammate Joel to pray with me as I ask God to reveal to me the issues of my heart.
I Thessalonians 2:6 Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ.

Looking back on my time in Ignite, I can see a part of me that craves attention towards certain things such as past lifestyle choices. My flesh desires to tell stories of my past string up the pride of life within and instead of telling some stories of my past in a manner that glorifies God my flesh craves to do it to make me look “cool”. I thank God for His Holy Spirit in which He shines a light upon the foolishness of my heart. The process of sanctification is not easy but I thank God that He is showing me the error of my ways which in this case is seeking glory for myself.

Application: I will make a stand to not tell stories of my past unless guided by God to do so. Instead I will share of what God is doing or in short share what God has brought me through.
I Thessalonians 3:11-13 Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to you. And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with His saints.

I can see in this time as it’s coming near to the end of our field time, interactions with people are become more sweet and I can see even amongst us interns the time together is even more so cherished. “and may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all” I pray this prayer over me and over all of class I also pray this for the classes to come. I see the Lord using this time in my life to show me how short life truly is and I pray that I can apply this to future relationships knowing how fast my time with people can end. At any moment, God can move people out of our lives for his purposes and I don’t want to take more time for granted.

Application: Pray this prayer for this week “ May the Lord make you abound in love to one another and to all.
Exodus 33:13 Now therefore, I pray, if I have found grace in your sight, show me now Your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight. And consider that this nation is Your people.

In the midst of everything going on its easy for me to lose focus of what’s actually going on. As I’m going about my day handling my responsibilities I can find myself with a lack of peace and sometimes frustrated . Today was not a bad day but there was a lack of peace within and it caused me to be distracted a bit and I got stuck looking inward, and lately that’s been a problem for me is being so focused on myself. It’s about 5:30 PM and I’m back at the house, prior to me writing this, with this lack of peace and me focusing inwardly, I had to get alone with the Lord and that’s when He lead me to this verse. Moses before taking this time with God may not have thought to ask of God this simple question:”Show me your way.” Moses just wanted to better know and understand God and I can feel in my spirit that I desire to better know Him as well. I have been clouded and too distracted by self to ask God to show me His ways and to take me deeper.

Application: Place a not in my pocket with this verse to remind me when I get stuck looking inward to look up to God.
Genesis 22:1-17

We all know the story of Abraham and Isaac and oh how easy it is to look over it as a story we have read over and over and think how we’re so familiar with this portion of scripture until the Holy Spirit tugs on your spirit and then the Word becomes alive and active . Lately I’ve been dealing with this sense of reserve as if U;m not full committed to the Lord, and then I begin to pray and ask what is it that I’m holding onto so dearly; Then these things start to spring forth from my heart as like a well and I find myself realizing that maybe its not just that I ‘feel like’ there is reserve but that there really is. For this God has been bringing me to Abraham and how he dealt with it. I can only imagine how Abraham wrestled with the thought of sacrificing his son. The inner turmoil, the questions running through his mind and after all that, after he wrestled with it long enough he realized there was nothing else to do but to submit. And there comes the resolve. Realizing that if his son is what God required then he was willing to give him to the Lord fully. Isaac was his everything, within Isaac rested even the promises of God. Abraham trusted God with Isaac, his own son and that’s a challenge to me to be willing to give everything up for God.

Application: I will make a commitment to the Lord to lay down what it is that God has brought to my attention for a time and have one of my teammates hold me accountable.

Friday, 23 February 2018

Psalm 111:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever! ESV

  Reading through Psalms 111 I see a great example of what fearing the Lord looks like. This psalmist is giving respect to the Lord giving Him praise and proclaiming how great our God is. That paints the fine line between actual fear and respectful (quote unquote) fear. James 2:19 also gives a good example of the line between fear and respect: You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe- and tremble! Which leads me to the second half of psalm 111:10  A good understanding have all those who do His commandments. His praise endures forever.<NKJV> Fearing the Lord doesn't mean shaking in our boots. In our fear or respect of Him and the work on the cross we have no reason to be afraid like the demons do who tremble for Gods love has been poured out on us.

Ephesians 5:15-17 “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.”

I can picture Paul after having written these verses just thinking to himself need I say more" And doing a mic drop with his pen. I mean, I read this and it's so point blank it's hard to really even say anything other then what it says. He tells us to walk circumspectly or carefully. I translate that to Don't be reckless and foolish, but walk in the wisdom the Lord blesses you with. He also tells us to redeem our time . Pretty much use it wisely and the best way to use it wisely is to know the will of our Heavenly Father. Asking the Lord, seeking His will being fixed on Him making sure we spend time in the Word . With that being said, it's easy in this setting to do this with all this counsel at hand 24/7, the accountability. Knowing that you have eyes on you almost at all times. The real test is outside of this training and we end up back in our old lives. When we're in the world but not of the world. Not under the eyes of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ but under the eyes of the world where we think we may be able to let a few "quote unquote harmless things slide. I've been subject to this reckless behavior and had been fooled and I crashed because I didn't walk carefully and I didn't make the best use of my time and the days are evil and I allowed that evil to draw me in. So I say take heed to these words and dont only know the will of the Lord but seek after it with all you have .

Friday, 9 February 2018

Joshua 10:9 Joshua therefore came upon them suddenly, having marched all night.

I just want to take a moment and grab some surrounding context. Gibeon made peace with Israel. Another king named Adoni-Zedek heard of all that was taking place and decided to get ten other kings to come help lay siege on Gibeon. It’s at this moment when Gibeon is being attacked that the people call out to the Israelites for help and they come to their aid. “Joshua therefore came upon them suddenly, having marched all night.”.There is not a moment in this where I think that Joshua looked at the Lord and said to Him “ Man, can we take a break? I’m exhausted!” I don’t believe for a second that Joshua went before the Lord with that request. Joshua had just received a word from the Lord “ Do not fear them, for I have delivered them into your hand; not a man of them shall stand before you.” I believe that Joshua was filled with zeal ready to fight for the Lord even after marching all night. In II Timothy 4:6 Paul is boldly talking about how he is already being poured out as a drink offering. He states how he has fought the good fight and have finished the race having kept the faith. I see in the life of Paul how hard he ran, how zealous he was. How hard Paul fought the good fight of faith is challenging. And as I see how Joshua received his marching orders and marched all night long and then suddenly came upon the attacking army and he was instantly in battle. I know for a fact that I have not been like Joshua in this situation. I’m over here just taking rest when I should be hoping for more opportunity to be poured out. I don’t want to hold anything back. I don’t want to reserve anything. I want to be able to state boldly as Paul did. “I am already being poured out.” I know I have been holding back and I know I have more to give. I want to be poured out so that I may be refilled just to be poured completely out again.

Application: Share this IBS with one of my teammates and ask that if they see me slacking and not allowing God to use me, not allowing myself to be poured completely out that they would set me aside and remind me of this.
I Corinthians 3:12-13 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is.

Recently, I’ve been praying to be more Eternally minded. I’ve been wanting to recognize more the cause and effect of my actions and the implications they have for eternity.I’ve truly been wanting to be more spiritually minded and have my eyes pointed towards Eternity, and not just that of mine, but to fix my eyes on that of others. Just these past two weeks , God has been showing me a little more how to keep my eyes fixed on these things in a healthy way and He used these verses to do it. I love how in this chapter, Paul talks about how him and another Co-laborer (Apollos) work together. One to sow seed, another to water but Paul also recognizes that it is God who gives the increase. It is so easy; at least for me to lose sight of who is actually giving the increase. Though I am building on a foundation of Christ, I’m afraid that a lot of that labor was with wood, hay and straw because it will become clear; for the day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sore it is. I want to recognize more, God’s power giving the increase and build upon the foundation of Christ precious materials that will last in the Day that I may read my reward in heaven and cast it right back to the feet of Jesus.

Application: Today I will ask God to help me disciple a young boy named moses and pray that as I spend time with him that Jesus would be right there with us and the Holy Spirit would guide as we spend time with one another.
Hebrews 2:3 How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him.

How shall we escape? Prior to verse three, the author of Hebrews is telling us of how every transgression and disobedience has received a just reward. I’ve seen first hand the destruction of sin, as I’m sure most of us have. I certainly don’t want to head back there, but I can also see at times in my life some sort of complacency creeping in and accompanying the complacency is a lack of urgency. This leads to a loss of passion and zeal. I must give the more earnest head to the things which I have heard lest I drift away.Give earnest head to what? How about to Jesus. A man that spent His life serving others and being submissive to God all the way to the cross. So that our sins may be placed on Jesus and the father having to turn away from Him, forsake Him. Not for anything He had done but because our sin was covering Him and God could no longer look upon Him. Jesus taking our punishment. Don’t neglect so great a salvation. I no longer want to walk in a manner that is lacking in passion because I neglect this great gift God has given us.

Application: Grab one of my teammates and share this with him and pray that God would stir in our hearts stoking the fire that is already within us and breathing passion and compassion into our lives.
Psalms 8:4 What is man that Your are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him?

A humbling verse indeed Psalm 8:4. What is man that you are mindful? What is man? Disobedient, selfish, cruel, angry, bitter, envious, sowing discord,  all around foolish and easily decieved. II Timothy 3: 2-5 is a large list of what man is like without Jesus. What is man that God should visit us? That He is mindful of us? I think to how forgetful I am and how much i’ve been forgiven. We have a God who has given all things into our hand. We have a God that loves us and gives us purpose; even through all of our filthiness . God sees us for who we can be with Him; With His Spirit, growing more and more into His likeness as we seek to be more like Him and less like our wretched self. And even still I look to how I want to see things in more of an eternal light and seeing people how God sees them.

Application: I will write down this verse on a piece of paper and keep it in my pocket to help me memorize this verse.

Friday, 5 January 2018

Romans 12:4-5 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.

Being a part of any ministry you will begin to notice how the whole body works together in unison with the Holy Spirit and it goes deeper than the worship team, pastors and any administration. Though that is part of it there's still more to be seen. When some people may be down God may lead someone to speak a word of encouragement . If someone is stepping off course God may lead someone to bring correction . The body of Christ when working in unison is beautiful. But recently I've witnessed a team that needed God to be a physician and tell why we're sickly and not doing well and what we can do to get well. When a human body becomes sick, it does everything it can to fight against this foreign virus that's plaguing the body though sometimes the only way to rid the body of sickness is with medicine. I witnessed that happen first hand and I myself needed a healthy dose of correction. It's amazing what truth can do to help the body of Christ move forward from whatever it is that's plaguing it whether that be jealousy, envy, or entitlement . When the body of Christ becomes sick due to sin, the only medicine is to look to Christ.

Application: Being a follower of Christ, I must recognize that my life is not my own. I need to be in submission to Christ and when I find myself thinking I deserve anything, I must look to Christ and realize that His love poured out is something that I don't deserve. To remind myself I will find as many statements of Paul's that says "Paul, a bondservant" or a slave of Christ.