Jesus trained His disciples and rewarded them after His resurrection. He could of ascended into Heaven without saying goodbye and yet He kept appearing among them and encouraging them. I may be going out on a limb here, but I believe the most encouraging reward to a bunch of fishermen was catching fish. Jesus shows up on the shore near their boat and yells out, “Children, you have any food?”. The language of family and a father is in the mouth of Jesus. He instructs them that all night of fishing and they tried the wrong side of the boat. He told them to try the other side. Is it possible these fishermen were tired and desperate and needed a reward of hope from the one who trained them? He knew how much hard work it took for the net to be made and rewarded them with just enough fish not to break it. There is a deception that the enemy wants to bring to Christians, that hard work is not a blessing from the Lord. We will never have to work for a right standing with Jesus but we are entrusted to work diligently for His kingdom to do everything unto the glory of Him. Jesus rewards the work of the hands of His children.

All three of our teens enjoy reading on their own free time, including the Bible. We no longer have to ask them to read now that they are grown men and women but when they were younger we did. All three of our kids despised reading growing up, when compared to movies and video games. They would choose literally everything but reading for entertainment. We paid our kids to read, not giving them a free allowance. When they pointed to toys or candy at the store, we told them how powerful they were and they could read books and the reward would be what they put their hands to. It would have been easier to buy the toy without the training, believe me. Through wisdom we paid more for the Bible to be read completely, because it carried more value in our home than other books. Today we have entrusted our children’s hands in life in many areas when it comes to growth and trust the labor of their hands for the glory of Jesus. Did you know the Father trusts you to put your hands to work?

Grab your Bible and communion and ask the Lord “what am I putting my hands to that you desire to bless?”

John 21:3-6 NKJ They said to him, “We are going with you also.” They went out and immediately got into the boat, and that night they caught nothing. But when the morning had now come, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Then Jesus said to them, “Children, have you any food?”They answered Him, “No.” And He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast, and now they were not able to draw it in because of the multitude of fish.

Hebrews 11:6 NKJ  But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Free To Sin? (Day 19)

Posted: January 23, 2021 in Uncategorized

One of the greatest deceptions for Christians is that freedom is only days, weeks, or years away. Freedom from sin is not in your future but a present “now” in Jesus Christ. Knowing that we are free from sin does not make us free to sin. Unbelievers think they are free to sin. Freedom from sin, takes believing God’s word and applying faith in Jesus. Knowing your free today is the power to sin less. So many Christians are discovering they are righteous by faith, healed by faith and the Spirit is sweeping across our county revealing they are free from sin the moment they accepted Christ Jesus. When we know we have freedom from sin today, we can truly grow in character without shame or guilt.

If the enemy can distract our thoughts and time to be sin-conscious then freedom can feel miles away. The whole carrot and the stick is being played out. The lie says “one day you can have freedom with Jesus, just not today” When we choose being Christ-conscious, not sin-conscious, it is the freedom our new identity is designed for. So many Christians believe freedom in their life is getting over that one difficulty of sin and then they will have arrived in freedom. Why does the enemy enjoy highlighting one sin? The deception of focusing on “one sin” is that if we fail in an area, Satan will accuse us that we never received freedom from Jesus in receiving Him. Also, if the enemy highlighted all our sins at once, then we might wake up to freedom in Jesus that we need compassion for other Christians who sin differently than us. Do you know that Jesus made you free from sin today?

Grab your Bible and communion and take the elements today and praise Him for an eternity of freedom from sin now in your life!

Romans 6:6-8 NKJ knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin. Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,

John 8:34-36 NKJ 34 Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. 35 And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. 36 Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

The Power in Silence. (Day 18)

Posted: January 21, 2021 in Uncategorized

Peter followed Jesus the night he was arrested. The chief priest and elders who arrested Him, blindfolded Jesus and punched Him in the face. They mocked Him and said, “prophesy who punched you.” Jesus knew exactly who was beating Him. He knew each man’s insecurities and their family history and could have prophesied “truth” and shamed them with His knowledge and power. He was silent. The world saw the silence of a man as weakness. Heaven saw it’s greatest power in the Son of man restraining His tongue. The Son of man who was there, before the foundations of the earth, when His Father spoke with His words into existence the world. Jesus said nothing to defend His face, yet He carried all power in His words. He said nothing to defend His name, but His tongue was sharper than a double edged sword. Jesus said nothing to defeat His attackers in revenge and yet His voice could thunder over the sound of rushing water.

In the same evening, before He is blindfolded and persecuted, Jesus hears a rooster crow and turns His face toward Peter and again says nothing. Jesus would have heard the denial of Peter, publicly announcing not knowing Jesus, and our King’s response is silence. Peter runs away from Jesus and the difficulty of His predicted actions in the situation, weeping. Later, Jesus is before Herod and asked many questions and again there is silence from Jesus, while insults are being hurled at Him. So Herod joins with them in the mocking, because of the silence. When they brought Him before Pilate, the chief priests accused Him and He never defended Himself, you guessed it, Jesus was silent. Before the greatest miracle Jesus performed, His death and resurrection, Jesus was silent. For the last few weeks, you have read the power in communion and the miracles Jesus can do. How we proclaim His death and return, each time we take the elements. Maybe you have been hearing silence from Him while taking communion. What if His silence in this season is where the power of Jesus is ramping up to demonstrate His greatest miracle in your life? Are you ready to receive that today?

Grab your Bible and communion, while taking the elements imagine the insults said against Jesus. Now imagine the insults said against you. Allow the silence of what Jesus did for you be greater than what someone said to you.

Mark 15:3-4 NKJ And the chief priests accused Him of many things, but He answered nothing. Then Pilate asked Him again, saying, “Do You answer nothing? See how many things they testify against You!” But Jesus still answered nothing, so that Pilate marveled.

Luke 22: 59-65 NKJ Then after about an hour had passed, another confidently affirmed, saying, “Surely this fellow also was with Him, for he is a Galilean.” 60 But Peter said, “Man, I do not know what you are saying!”Immediately, while he was still speaking, the rooster crowed. 61 And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had said to him, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.” 62 So Peter went out and wept bitterly. Jesus Mocked and Beaten63 Now the men who held Jesus mocked Him and beat Him. 64 And having blindfolded Him, they struck Him on the face and asked Him, saying, “Prophesy! Who is the one who struck You?” 65 And many other things they blasphemously spoke against Him.

Jesus broke the bread and said, “Take, eat; this is my body which is broken for you..”. The broken body was for our body to be purchased and our relationship restored with the Father. Our relationship with God can never be broken once we are born again. We can never get closer in proximity to the Father than seated in Heavenly places with Him. This doesn’t mean we can’t get to know Him more and spend eternity doing so. This doesn’t mean we can’t grow in our obedience and trust in Him. The broken body of Jesus means He is not walking away from our marriage relationship on our worst day and we can not get any more married to Him on our best day.

It’s possible people can share earthly marriage vows and down the road forget their passion to pursue knowing one another. One spouse could even choose to break relationship and vows with the other losing passion. Jesus will never break His vows and lose His passion for you. He is faithful even when you are faithless. Jesus patiently waits for us to receive His wisdom and peace supplied through knowing Him. Jesus said, “It is better to give than to receive.”, when encouraging to think of serving other people. Yet when it comes to our relationship with Jesus, He wants one priority for us over serving people….. to receive relationally from Him. Knowing we have a perfect, righteous standing with God, the confidence we need to be relational with Him can be out of this world. The performance gymnastics, we once tried to earn favor with God, is obliterated by good news of grace. Broken body means no broken relationship with God ever, for eternity. Have you thanked Him and received this by faith today?

Grab your Bible and communion and break the bread and remember that His heart is for His children’s relationships to be at peace and in unity with one another. Thank Him for unity with the saints and receive that unity between you and the Spirit.

1 Corinthians 11:24 NKJ and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”

Luke 10:38 NKJ Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”41 And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

Proclaiming Death? (Day 17)

Posted: January 20, 2021 in Uncategorized

All scripture is God breathed and Paul wrote that you and I taking communion proclaims the Lord’s death till He comes. He meant what he said. He could have said communion proclaims the resurrection. Why didn’t he? Shouldn’t proclaiming the resurrection be where the supernatural power would be? Why should we proclaim the torture and beating that Jesus took? Shouldn’t we only proclaim the miracle of death defeated? Both are needed and Paul was highlighting that “proclaiming death” reminds our body the natural price Jesus paid on His body for us to experience the supernatural of Him with us in our body.

Everyone followed Jesus when it was time for miracles and the supernatural. When it was time for the natural and for the hardship of the crucifixion, many scattered. Even today, many follow after miracles more than looking for Jesus in their natural every day life. How could Jesus be in a house of crying babies and the changing of diapers for that mom or dad? How could Jesus be in that job where every morning the boss and customers are complaining about the difficulties of life? How can Jesus be in that church where the songs aren’t our favorite and the pastor is long winded? What if communion and proclaiming the death of Jesus is more about seeing Him faithful with us in the natural today?

Grab your Bible and communion and ask Him what He thinks of the routine areas you might find “natural” in your life. Take a moment and thank Him for His full presence being wrapped in your humanity.

Isaiah 53:2-4 NKKJ There is no beauty that we should desire Him.
He is despised and rejected by men,
A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.
And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him;
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.

1 Corinthians11:26 NKJ For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.

From Poverty To Riches (Day 16)

Posted: January 19, 2021 in Uncategorized

The Apostle Paul told the church of Corinth that for their sake Jesus became poor so that He could make them rich. The context in scripture, was Paul sharing about financial generosity to the needs of the Saints. Some people are deceived that this is only spiritual richness that Jesus paid for and has nothing to do with money. Yet the majority of good earthly fathers want to see their children blessed more financially than what they grew up with. If even the world’s moms and dads want better for their children, how much more does our Heavenly Father want better for our financial needs as His sons and daughters.

Communion can destroy the poverty mindset. The poverty mind says Jesus doesn’t care about our financial needs or others. When Jesus went to the cross, the Roman soldiers wanted His clothing and they gambled over who would have it. That means Jesus had clothes of high value and He was stripped naked for our sake. Jesus didn’t lose everything because of a bad economy or poor financial decisions, He willingly gave up everything of wealth for you to have access to heaven’s economy and to help you make wise financial decisions on the earth. You can never purchase from God the blessings that come from the cross. You can have faith that the cross purchased God’s generous blessings for you. As you take communion today, thank the Lord Jesus for willingly becoming poor. Thank Him for His desire to make you rich and generous like your Daddy.

Grab your Bible and communion and ask the Lord, “if this action of communion today testifies to the death of Jesus, what action today can I take that testifies to the resurrection of Jesus?”

2 Corinthians 8:9 NLT You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.

Romans 8:15 NLT So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”

Bitter To Clean (Day 15)

Posted: January 18, 2021 in Uncategorized

The people of Israel were set free from captivity and found themselves thirsty traveling in the desert. For three days they found no water until they came upon an oasis. The water was too bitter to drink and they complained and blamed Moses. Moses cried out to the Lord and the Lord showed him a piece of natural wood to throw into the water. When the wood from a tree touched the surface, the bitterness became clean. If they had continued to drink the bitterness they would have died.

Did you know the root of bitterness is the only root to grow upward? Most roots grow down but bitterness grows up to trouble us and corrupt those around us. When we are free from bitterness we can receive freely from others and flow in unity. It takes a team of believers to look after one another and bitterness resists being a healthy team. If you are feeling troubled and continue to have struggles with corrupting teams of believers then there is a solution. Grab your communion today and apply the cross (wood) to what you are drinking. Repentance is confessing the root of bitterness is there and thanking him for sweet forgiveness. This is the kind of true forgiveness that didn’t leave you or walk away from your drama. Watch as the power of Jesus takes the natural communion and makes it super-natural!

Grab your Bible and communion and ask the Lord to remind you of believers you walked away from with bitterness. Ask the Lord to help you forgive them the way you were forgiven by Jesus. Now that you know you are clean, do you believe they are clean?

Hebrews 12:15 NLT Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many.

Exodus 15:22-24 NLT 22 Then Moses led the people of Israel away from the Red Sea, and they moved out into the desert of Shur. They traveled in this desert for three days without finding any water. 23 When they came to the oasis of Marah, the water was too bitter to drink. So they called the place Marah (which means “bitter”).24 Then the people complained and turned against Moses. “What are we going to drink?” they demanded. 25 So Moses cried out to the Lord for help, and the Lord showed him a piece of wood. Moses threw it into the water, and this made the water good to drink.

I had a friend, growing up, who had a great big pool and we loved to play in it all the time. In Fort Worth, it gets extremely hot in the summer so we would jump in the pool and spend hours of fun just coming up with games and laughing. I remember one year, when summer was getting close, I noticed the pool was extremely green with moss. Concerned, I asked my friend what could be done to fix this. Turns out the pump that helped filter the water was broken. Here was once a beautiful pool that couldn’t be used or enjoyed, and for the entire summer that pump stayed broken!

When studying our Bible, we must filter between the law and grace. Falling from grace has nothing to do with our sin but trying to be justified by the law. Righteousness is a gift from Jesus that we can relax, floating on our back, in peace and relationship with God. If Christ becomes no effect in someone’s life, then it is not because He lost His power. It’s foolishness to rely on man’s strength to be relied on for relationship with God, instead of pure grace and faith filtering our life in Christ Jesus. The pure Jesus-filtered gospel creates an oasis for our relationship with God to grow and enjoy the cool fresh water! Come on in, the water is perfect!

Grab your Bible and communion and thank the Lord for a perfect relationship in Christ Jesus. See the blood of Jesus declaring you righteous and pure because of His strength and obedience. Rest today knowing that your sins are forgiven once and for all.

Galatians 5:4 KJV  Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

Ephesians 2:8 NKJ For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

Stimulus Priorities (Day 13)

Posted: January 16, 2021 in Uncategorized

In early 2020 many citizens in the U.S. were in shock that politicians would want to financially fund other countries with a stimulus during a pandemic before their own people.  Politicians taking responsibility for our country as a priority was the cry of America. It’s a good thing to support other countries during a crisis. The question some Americans were asking, “is it a God thing for U.S. politicians to prioritize their citizens over other countries, when other countries are hurting in a crisis too?”. The world is often offended with Godly priorities. Many can be deceived to believe there will be less honor for those in less priority, so everyone should have equal priority. This isn’t Biblical. For example marriage is a sacrificial priority to God over raising children. Children can be honored by the priority of marriage. Never does Paul say, “Husbands, lay down your life for your children”.  It is our responsibility to keep our life in God’s priority. Jesus even said “Freely You Have Received Freely Give”. The priority is receiving from Jesus and the response is to give it away. We can’t give away what we never received from Jesus.

 “Responsibility and priorities” are often difficult words in our walk with Jesus, because our old selfish thoughts rarely enjoys growing in faith. Paul encouraged the early church to be renewed in the spirit of our minds.  As leaders in our home and community, the enemy wants to convince our thoughts that someone else will prioritize seeking first the kingdom of God and it is not personally our responsibility to give it away to those around us. When Jesus said to the disciples go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone, their priority began telling their communities. After the gospel was spread in the city of Jerusalem, it spread from there. Remember when the man demon possessed was set free, Jesus instructed him to go home and share the good news. Jesus had a priority to minister to the jewish nation while He walked on the earth, but this man was not jewish and could reach his people and his nation with his testimony of being set free by Jesus.

Take some time today to ask the Holy Spirit what are your priorities in His kingdom? Grab your Bible and communion and thank the Lord for trusting you with the responsibility to freely receive His grace.

Matthew 10:8 NKJ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.

Acts 1:8 NJK But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Not My Circus? (Day 12)

Posted: January 14, 2021 in Uncategorized

Often people have such busy lives in America that we desperately feel the need to outsource. Some parents have seasons where they are blessed to outsource the yard work, car repairs, child education, house repairs, cooking, cleaning, laundry, daycare and so on and so on. Outsourcing can help tremendously for people to prioritize their life for things they desire to value their time with. Everyone knows it is impossible to outsource their personal exercise at the gym (if we could there would be a waiting list for that). So if we can never outsource our personal growth in our physical body, we need to realize we can never outsource our personal spiritual growth. The Holy Spirit will never make you seek Him and His thoughts on life. This is why the fruit of the spirit is self-control. You are responsible for your own motivation and spiritual hunger towards God. It was never God’s heart for pastors or leaders to seek God for you. His heart is for every Christian to be a priest in their home and have access to come boldly to the throne of grace (1 Peter 2:9). Love gives freedom to choose and will never force you to love them back.

Taking communion has been seen as the religious church responsibility (outsourced) by some Christians. Immature believers may take the approach, “Not my Responsibility (Not my circus)” in their home with communion. However, when we as believers take responsibility to motivate our thoughts toward Christ with communion it will strengthen our faith growth to persevere in life’s trials. It takes discipline to grab our Bible and communion in our personal time and exercise our faith to hear God. Jesus said eternal life is to know the Father. Communion is a personal invitation from our Heavenly Father to sit at the table in relationship as He supplies faith to personally know Him.

Grab your Bible and communion and ask the Lord for wisdom to know Him intimately. Ask Him what He felt on the cross about you when he hung there in His greatest pain. Ask Him how He felt when you experienced your greatest pain in life.

John 17:3 ESV And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

Galatians 6:8-10 ESV For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10 So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.