Archive for June, 2016

Attitude of Gratitude…

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“They knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks” Romans 1:21

Have you ever done something for someone and received their thanks in return? Everyone feels appreciated when they’re thanked. Whether it’s for something large or small, a thank you always speaks louder than a selfish silence. Appreciating what others do fosters an attitude of gratitude. This attitude always builds our future and strengthens our relationships.

Todays verse reminds us how God’s views thanks. Paul writes that it’s possible for people to know God but never give Him thanks. Some folk offer up excuses & problems to God their whole life; never once giving thanks. These people are on a path of foolishness, darkness & confusion. The thankful have a bounty of things to thank God for and they do. Thanks & gratitude always leads us towards wisdom, light & clarity.

Being thankful is a very powerful spiritual force. When we’re thankful we produce gratitude. Gratitude holds our focus on the great & awesome things that God is doing in our lives rather than on worldly problems. Anyone who’s unthankful will focus on the oceans of problems and mountains of difficulties that surround them. The thankful don’t concentrate on these. They’re looking at rivers of blessings and forests of gratitude around them. They give worship & thanks to Gods continually for what they’re seeing.

This week let’s expand our attitude of gratitude. If we’re seeing oceans of problems and mountains of difficulties let’s change our focus. Begin thanking God for all the small & large things He’s doing. Start to develop the attitude that sees rivers of blessings and forests of gratitude ahead. Continue in this attitude & there will be a greater future with stronger relationships full of wisdom, light & clarity.

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Thanks develops an “Attitude of Gratitude”

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Invest Ahead…

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“Don’t hoard treasure down here… Stockpile treasure in heaven”
Matthew 6:19-20

It’s easy for people to start stockpiling and storing things that they believe they’ll need in their future. An overwhelming fear of lack & insufficiency can drive people to accumulate vast amounts of belongings, finance & supplies so that they’ll feel secure in the coming years. Hoarder’s often hide, guard & carefully preserve their treasures but ultimately much of it remains unused, decays and is lost.

Todays verse helps us see God’s reason why we shouldn’t hoard stuff here on earth. We’re told that the hoarder’s stash will be eaten, corrupted & stolen here. It will ultimately become useless & unproductive. In contrast, when we stockpile our treasure in heaven, everything becomes safe, secure & profitable. We are actually building our future rather than protecting our present.

We only get to spend a short number of decades here on earth. Our longest time, by far, will be spent in eternity. It makes complete sense to redirect & stockpile our treasure in the eternal heaven rather than on this temporal earth. It isn’t hard to store our treasure in heaven. We must simply do what God’s Word says with our stuff rather than what we selfishly want to do. Our treasure then builds where we’ll end up rather than where we’re at right now.

This week lets get real with ourselves. Let’s take a little time to consider what we’re investing in ourselves & what we’re actually stockpiling in heaven. If we truly believe in heaven & eternity then we’ll be directing our treasure there. We’ll be making decisions to deal with our stuff the way the Bible says. We’ll be building our eternal future plus we’ll enable ourselves to have a far greater life whilst here on earth.

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No Eclipse…

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“None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us”
Romans 8:37

Have you ever experienced a solar eclipse? For the shortest time the moon passes in front of the sun totally blocking it’s light. In these moments everything seems dark, cold & indistinguishable. Within a few moments the sun reappears and the eclipse is gone. The returning light makes everything seem bright, brilliant and seeable again.

Todays verse lets us know about the love Jesus has for us. The Apostle Paul explains that this love is so bright that nothing can overwhelm or eclipse it. A cacophony of things that may try surround our verse [Romans 8:31-38] but we’re told that none of it should faze us. We have the bright, brilliant & seeable love of Jesus shining on us continually.

The love that Jesus has for us causes an overwhelming & triumphantly victory in our lives. Every time the enemy tries to eclipse and faze us God’s love outshines him. Every time the enemy plans to destroy us God’s love brilliantly exposes him. God wants us to walk in victory every day. That’s why we must walk in the inseparable love that God has for us.

This week lets take a stand and allow nothing to faze us. Lets ensure that whatever comes our way is outshone by the love Jesus has for us. Let ensure that every plan of destruction is exposed and every attempt to darken us will cause His brilliance to shine brighter. As we do this God’s love will ensure that darkness cannot overcome us [John 1:5] and our future will be very bright indeed.

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Pop Up Store….

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“Truth lasts; lies are here today, gone tomorrow” Proverbs 12:19

The latest fad in retailing seems to be the “Popup Store”. These shops are small, temporary and plentiful. They pop up in popular locations one day then disappear soon after. They sell highly desirable & popular items that interest & engage the customer. Having sold their product they disappear never to be seen again.

Today’s verse lets us know that lies are just like Popup Stores. There are many of them. They appear in popular places. They offer desirable words that engage & interest the listener. But, just like popup stores, lies will disappear after a short time. No one will remember who actually said them or what they were actually about.

On the other hand department stores are like truth. They are establishments that have stood the test of time & aren’t going to disappear quickly. Macy’s, Sears or David Jones has each been trading for almost 2 centuries. They are like truth. They’ve outlasted all their fleeting competitors remaining strong over the longest time. Truth will always outlive any lie so never buy into a lie – stand with the truth.

This week lets make a decision to pursue truth at all cost. Let’s not allow ourselves to enter the popup store of lies. Let’s not buy into its desirable words & popular items [2 Timothy 4:3]. Instead lets stand tall for the truth that will outlast every lie spoken [Ephesians 6:14]. Not only does this cause our lives to flourish, it also causes us to walk in freedom like never before [John 8:32].

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“The ways of right-living people glow with light; the longer they live, the brighter they shine” Proverbs 4:18

We remember seeing fireflies for the first time visiting precious friends near Columbus, Ohio. As twilight arrived many fireflies started moving around. Their bright blinking lights caught everyone’s attention. Children were running around hoping to catch at least one of these illusive beetle. The darker it became the more brilliant their lights appeared and the easier it was for them to be seen.

Today’s verse lets us know that we, as believers, should be easily seen. When we live life God’s way, rather than our own, our lives will glow. Anyone whose life is immersed in darkness will easily notice the difference. They’ll see our brightness and want it for themselves. The longer we live right the brighter we become. The brighter we become the more noticeable we will be.

So how is it possible to live this life that shines brightly? Matthew 22:37-39 sums a brilliant life up in 2 simple but vital ways. Firstly we must love the Lord our God with all our heart, all our soul, and all our mind. Secondly we must love our neighbor as ourselves. When we start doing this we’ll be glowing. As we continue in it we’ll be shining brightly.

This week lets make sure our lives are glowing & bright. When we continue to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind we’ll be a brilliant beacon of hope to our friends & neighbors. No matter how dark their lives might seem we’ll shine like a firefly. Our brightness will catch their attention. Then we’ll be able to share God’s amazing love to them. That will set the captives free & allow them to experience a brilliant life just like we have.

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