Sunday, January 31, 2016

Become a Vessel God Can Use

Pastor Allan remarked there are a lot of new people here today, and I must tell you, “What you see is what you get.”  I took notes as he ministered and present his sermon edited.
God is on the move and we are daily changing into His image.  I am thankful that I am not what I was yesterday or yester-year.

It is not so much as hearing His voice but doing what His voice tells us.  At times we get so caught up in the need, that we don’t pay attention to His voice.  Be more aware of his voice and become a doer. 
It doesn’t matter our speed, just as long as we move forward.  We pray, Lord send your fire – come Lord and visit me, then His voice gives us a message, but do we obey?

I encourage you to get wrapped up in God’s Word, and then not to fail to listen and obey.

Backing up, I am reminded of a sermon I preached about Peter and John walking in the temple and they saw a lame man.  Peter and John stepped into a realm they had never been before, and there was no turning back.  Many times they had passed by that man, not paying him any attention.  He was a piece of garbage, not worth looking at.  Suddenly they noticed him.

As we preach this, we begin to see the power of the Holy Spirit.  Healing reports of cancers taken away, and rotator cuffs that refused to move, now are active.

We have seen a bunch of knot heads come in and get delivered from addiction, and I am expecting God to continue to move in power.

I must admit that I stepped away from that power for a time, but today I am moving forward.  We don’t want to stifle the Holy Spirit, but we can become discouraged when we have real needs, and nothing happens when we pray.

We ask, “Are we fasting and praying enough? Where are the miracles?”

We haven’t been doing anything wrong, but are our expectations high?

Pastor explained his absence last week saying, "I attended a Healing Conference with Randy Clark as the speaker.  I confess that the first session went over my head, but each session was building line upon line.  What hit me most, was it is not our faith, but it is the Power of God working through us.  We must be available.  Once you are aware that you need Jesus, it is time to repent and begin to live your life with Him.  Jesus desires to heal and deliver, but He is looking for vessels to use." 

It is easy to get caught up in the nonsense of the world, and it is not always popular to be a Man or Woman of God. 

The Prophet Jeremiah said in 2:15,  “Therefore thus says the Lord, If you return, then I will bring you again, and you shall stand before me: and if you take forth the precious from the vile, you shall be as my mouth: let them return unto you; but return not you unto them.”

That day, Peter and John took out the preciousness of the vile.  Their eyes were open to see the need and to see the man as a precious person needing a miracle. 
We too must lift our eyes not to see garbage, and filth but taking the precious from the vile, we become God’s mouth.  It is our responsibility to have a relationship with Jesus.  Our church is growing and it is our responsibility to nurture the new ones.

God wants to first take out the trash in us and separate the rubbish from the precious.

I can appreciate a good car show,  We view a beautiful car that has been restored, and are amazed at the before photos showing it was once rusty and disgusting.   The owner saw something in that car that others could not see. 

It is that way with those who seem cast aside, but God sees in them potential. 
Here at our church, our job is to show up to worship, and to become equipped to minister.  During the prayer time, go ahead and pray with and encourage those who come forward.

In the game of football, what happens if you go out in the field without your helmet and proper equipment?  We know you will get beat up, so the answer is we must be prepared, rooted and grounded and established. 
We don’t want to become a creature of habit but to walk in the Spirit and allow God to make us a vessel fit for His service.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Work Place Situations


Our Bible Study teacher opened the lesson on Sunday by saying, “The feeling that comes with the salvation experience is awesome, but it isn’t always there.  Then we take Salvation by faith in God’s Word and Trust. 

Today we were considering persecution in the work place and temptation to do wrong.

In Bible days many households had servants.  Servants might chose this life, of life chooses for them.  Some were captured, others were taken as payment of a debt.  There were some Masters who were cruel and would punish their servants with beatings.  Many times the punishment was undeserved. 

What happens to us when we are asked to lie, cheat or falsify something at work?  Just the other day, a friend of mine was asked by a co-worker to illegally split a commission to avoid taxes.  He refused to do so.

On our job, we may have a better idea, but we are under authority, and should do the work the way our boss wants it done.  Timing is everything.  Present your good idea later in private.  It may help to write it out so your boss can think about it.

Our teacher told a story of an Islamic man witnessed to by an American soldier; who told the man that he was praying for him.  The man said, “I don’t think anyone has ever prayed for me except my mother.”  His heart was softened, and a few days later, he saw a vision; the figure of a man who spoke saying, “I AM the Light of the World, I will show you the way if you will follow me.”

There are many reports of people in other lands, seeing visions of Jesus and many times they secretly receive Jesus as Lord.

1 Peter 2:18-20 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully.  For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.

Peter was comparing suffering wrongfully with the suffering of Christ.  Jesus was buffeted and reviled, and was innocent, yet He submitted and bore our sins on His body.

1 Peter 2:24  Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness - - by whose stripes you were  healed.

Jesus was silent when He was accused, and we must understand that Pilot the governor was just doing his job.  He had authority to release Jesus, but the crowd swayed his better judgment. What if he had listened to his wife and had nothing to do with Jesus?  It was not so, because the death of Christ was ordained to happen.

People can be cruel and stubborn and moved by others who protest.  Anger, hatred caused refusal to accept Jesus as the Messiah, and He was crucified for you and me.

We process things that happen to us and try to avoid situations.  The proper way is to act maturely.

If we are being troubled at the work place, or at school, it is more than sitting back and expecting God to intervene.  We need to pray and expect intervention.

A member of our class commented, “Once burned in a relationship, we are cautious to make friends.

Our Teacher told a story about a well educated man, whose young wife died.  His grief and deep sorrow caused him to make some bad decisions, and to drown his sorrow with the bottle.  He did not know Jesus and took the world’s way to cope.  Later like the prodigal son, he came to himself and changed his direction in life.  God draws the line and says, “No More.” 
Peter said, “We continued to stray, going our own way, but we are now returned, (turned around) and going in the direction to the Good Shepherd.”

There are situations in our life and the Holy Spirit nudges us.  We need to ask, “What should I do about this?” 
Each situation is different, so keep listening.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Press Forward – No Matter What

A Fourth Man Appeared to Protect Them

Our Sunday Morning service at Open Door Church was blessed with a guest speaker, Rodney Waldrop.  I took notes and present his digested sermon.

“Today we will consider two of my favorite Bible Stories.  Do you have a favorite?  Some would say, Daniel and the Lions Den, or Jonah and the whale, but one of my most favorites is the three Hebrew Children thrown into the heated furnace because they refused to bow down to the Kings image of another god.  A fourth person appeared and protected them so they did not burn. 
No matter what they faced, they were true to their God.

These stories encourage us to press forward regardless of what we face in life.  How many brought their Bible to church today?  Always bring your Bible because you will need it as you go to war against the enemy of your soul.

The disciples prayed in Acts 4:29  Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus. - -

And with great power they gave person witness of the resurrection.

It is refreshing to be here today and enjoy your worship, for in many churches what they call worship is not really “Worship.”

Have you noticed there are many power words in the Bible?  Some are repeated over and over and it seems like repetition, but it is actually a washing.

Do not fear, Do not be afraid was said often by Jesus.  Be courageous and be bold was not said as often, but it is just as important.

My second favorite story is “The Good Shepherd” portrayed in Psalm 23.

Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil, for you are with me.

Many even today are facing death because they will not deny Jesus.  Others are grieving because death has visited their home and taken one of their loved ones.

If Jesus had not risen from the dead, we would still be dead in our sins.

Before we come to God’s house, we need to make time to prepare ourselves to receive.

God has prepared a table for us, but we must come so he can restore our emotions and our thinking to align with His will.

“He guides me to walk in paths of righteousness . . .”

There are things ahead that we may not be ready for - - unless we are prepared.  We hold our breath and finally let out a big sigh.

David was hiding in a cave because King Saul was hunting him to take his life.  The king entered the cave to sleep, while David was in the back observing.  David’s men said, “Here’s your chance to kill the King, but David was righteous and said, “I can’t harm God’s anointed King.”  David was a man after God’s own heart.

God is not just ANY God - - He is MY God, and He is MY Shepherd.

God made me just the way I am, and we need to be satisfied who we are.  God loves you and me just as we are, and He is willing to use us for his service if we are willing to submit to the Holy Spirit.  He takes the unqualified, and qualifies you and me.

“Surely Goodness and Mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.”

We need to believe what God is saying and obey. 

Sometimes when a person is talking to you; your mind is else where and the important message is missed.  This is due to lack of paying attention.  Pay attention to God’s voice and to His Word.

You may know all this and wonder how it applied to you.  Let God re-make you so that you can be used of Him.  What are you afraid of?  The thing we need is to deepen our relationship with God and with one another.  God offers life, love and hope, and He forgives sin.  Our God is bigger than anything, any disease, even cancer.

In the House of God, it is the easiest place to get answers to prayer.  The atmosphere is charged with power as others agree with you.

God’s word is true, so expect miracles, and expect sinners to come to Jesus, expect a radical change in lives.

Can you pray this prayer?  “God use me.  I am not afraid.  Grant me courage and boldness to I step out to obey you. Thank you for anointing me to do your will.”


Friday, January 22, 2016

Submit to Authority?

Our Bible Study at Open door church opened by reading: 

1 Peter 2:13-14  Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.

Our teacher began by asking; “The government says it is okay to abort babies, and to have same sex relationships, - -  so should we then participate in these laws?

We are to honor the King – the leaders, the police and those who protect the innocent. However we are not obliged to sin just because it is now a law or is freely available.

In history there was a manipulation of the queens to kill the rightful heir so that her son could rule.  Even in the Bible there were wicked queens who killed their own children and grandchildren so they could be the Queen.  Yes there were evil rulers – followed by new Kings who were even more wicked.

We are reminded of Nero who burnt Rome so he could blame it on the Christians and then persecute them.

1 Peter 4:12-16  Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: - - If you be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are you; for the spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. - - But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evil doer, or as a busy body in other men’s matters.  But if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.

Peter was crucified, and Christians were terribly mistreated.  Early in the ministry of Jesus, his cousin, John the Baptist was executed.

Chapter 13 of Romans, warns us to Make NO provision for the flesh to sin.

Sometimes we try to figure out how much we can get away with doing something we desire to participate in.  “Just once,” we tell our self; or as Eve said, only a “tiny bite.” 

Many have been caught in the trap of telling them selves, I will do this and - - later I will repent and God will forgive me!  

Let me tell you that God is NOT in the business of playing games, and although He is merciful and may forgive you if you are sincere - - there will be a time when He says "That is enough !!"

Always remember; What you sow – you shall reap.  Good decisions bring good consequences, and naturally, Bad decisions will bring bad consequences.

It is sad to say that those we hold dear and their choices will also effect us and our families.

Pray for Grace to stand true to God's Word. 

Titus 3:1-7  Reminds us again to obey magistrates and to be ready to do good to others. 

We may have been foolish in the past, but now we are wise knowing Who we are “IN Christ.”

How do we respond when Christians are looked down upon, at school, in the work place, or even by our families?

What do you do when your boss wants you to back up his lie? 

Conflict will come, but a soft answer turns away wrath.  Be ready to be silent, waiting to speak the right thing. 

Our world is shaken, but it is our responsibility to live Christ like and to Honor Him as Lord and our KING.


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Our Body is Wonderfully Made

Our Body is Wonderfully Made
Jesus is Our Healer and at times He uses doctors

Many times we get sick, and as we pray - - often we are healed.  Other times our body will heal itself as we allow time to do its work.   So what are we to do when we don’t find relief from our pain. 

Our body is wonderfully made.  God put us together with cells, blood and organs to function and keep us well.  We are basically made up of water and mud, and our body has its own electrical system.  Our brain sends impulses to various parts of our body telling them to function as they should.  Sometimes our brain needs reminding to do its work properly.  

Medical Field:  I am not against doctors and they have helped me many times - - but - -

Our modern doctors are taught to prescribe drugs and if that doesn’t help, they add to the first drug more drugs.  The truth is drugs can poison your body and eventually kill you. 

Our old fashioned doctor refused to prescribe drugs for long term; But not our modern doctors as that is what they learned to do in Medical school. 

Is the Medical Field our only hope? 
Alternative medicine seeks to use food, vitamins, and other methods to bring relief. 

Chiropractors manipulate the spine to align the body so that poison will drain through the kidneys.  

Other scientists have discovered points in our body that when pressed or massaged, will open up blocked areas to help drain infection. 

Some alternative doctors prescribe exercise within reason.  Here is where you avoid YOGA because its base is from Eastern gods and their spiritual guides.    

Should we jump on the band wagon and accept everything offered?  It is wise to use caution because there are Charlatans out there who are wizards with magic potions that should be avoided. 

I remember many years ago, my jaw locked and I could not open my mouth.  A chiropractor using a manipulation put my jaw back in place.  Another time with my jaw again, my local chiropractor could not help me.  I went to a different chiropractor who advised me to do some simple exercises with my tongue and to tap the top of my head to wake up my brain to use the muscles in my jaw.  That took care of the jaw problem. 
After my recent fall and landing on my back, I have two areas that have a swelling (lump)  I need to see a Chiropractor that also does massage as I believe this will help bring relief. 

For the most part, I avoid drugs, but I daily take vitamins and herbs and a baby aspirin. 

Be wise, be aware and let the Holy Spirit be your constant guide, when you need extra help with your health.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Follow Christ


Pastor Allan opened his message with some remarks.  I took notes and present his digested sermon.

“It is time to stop playing church and start living for Jesus.  If something in your life needs changing, let God talk to you.  I am not the Holy Spirit, but consider that the Holy Spirit speaks through ministers.  Let your heart be open to change as God directs.  Be careful not to sit there and refuse to listen to the Holy Spirit.

The past weeks, God has me in a place that is not too comfortable and I am ready for change.

Remember the people at Antioch were first called Christians, because they walked like Jesus and acted like Jesus.  They were “Little Christs,” because they were like Him.

Let the world see Jesus in you.  Who are you following?  Is it your friend, or your spouse or is it our Lord.  Are you just showing up at church to see what is going on?

Each of us have divine appointments.  We are influencing someone.  Let it be for good.

Our worship leaders do a great job, and we have a wonderful time praising God, but how do we walk when we leave this sanctuary?

If you are following me, I will let you down, so I tell you now to keep your eyes on Jesus. 

We see a lot of new faces, and if you are looking for a church home, consider that perhaps God sent you here, and make a commitment.  Let God take you to a higher level in Jesus.  Step into a new Heavenly realm so  you can be earthly good.

Let us not focus on our weaknesses, but on our strengths.  Lord hear our prayer, give us more of you.  Breathe on me oh Lamb of God for you are worthy.  He sings back to us, “I have made you worthy.”

God desires to heal you, in your spirit, body and emotionally, so you can be a blessing to others.  If you get this tugging to pray for someone, that is God urging you to obey.

When we choose to follow Christ whole heartedly, we will become dead to the flesh.  Let those things that displease Him, fall off.  Don’t swing back and forth, on again - off again. 

Often after you make a quality decision, all Hell breaks loose, but determine to be dead to the flesh and allow Christ to work it out.

To be heavenly minded we must learn to slay the fleshly mind, and rid ourselves of sin, including wrath, anger and pride.  You have to WANT to remove them. We wonder why we still walk in the flesh.  We are reminded God is still working on us, sometimes a bit at a time.

When Jesus ministered he was moved with compassion as he viewed the crowds.  The people shoved, pushed and some crawled to get to him.  How diligent are you to see Christ?

Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful

We can’t be content to sit back thinking we have arrived, but we must move on and reach out to be kind and treat people as Christ would.

Let us have a State of Mind full of humility and meekness.  “If my people will repent and humble themselves and pray, I will heal their land.”

I can humble some people, but God says to humble yourself.

Every time you act as Christ, you may be criticized with people thinking you are a “push over.”  Don’t listen.  Remember your flesh is dead.

Decide how you want to live, and forgive one another, as you have been forgiven.  In the middle of being crucified, Jesus cried, “Father Forgive them for they know not what they are doing.”  God’s standard of forgiveness is to Keep on forgiving.

Paul wrote that without love - - all else is a waste of time.


Thursday, January 14, 2016

Wind – Breath and the Holy Spirit

The Glory of God is All Through the Bible

Wind – Breath and the Holy Spirit

As we began our Bible Study at Open Door Church, we were considering How the Holy Spirit often manifests Himself.  Our teacher had asked me to stand in for her and I present a digested lesson for today.
Wind and breath is frequently used in the Bible as a metaphor for some spiritual truth

I was reminded of an old Hymn:  “Let it breathe on me, Let it breathe on me.   Let the breath of God now breathe on me;” 

God’s breath was evident in spoken words during the creation, and in the wind as it blew over the earth.  And when God created Adam in Genesis 2:7 “-  - He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.”

We are reminded that scripture IS God’s breath, 2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,

Symbols of the Holy Spirit » Wind » Reviving

The Prophet Ezekiel was told (37:9-10)  Prophesy to the breath and to say to the breath, 'Thus says the Lord GOD, "Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they come to life."  So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they came to life and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army.  

Symbols of the Holy Spirit » Wind » Independent

Jesus was explaining to Nichodemus about being Born Again; John 3:8  "The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit."  

Jesus appeared to the disciples after His resurrection (John 20:19-23)  And he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.  This was their Born Again experience.  Jesus later told them to seek for the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, which was poured out in the Upper Room. 

Symbols of the Holy Spirit » Wind » Powerful

On the day of Pentecost, (Acts 2:2) There was a loud sound as wind, and tongues of fire appeared.  And suddenly there came from heaven a noise (sound) like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.”  

Paul issued a warning telling the believers to mature and stay with the Word of God and its truth.

 (Ephesians 4:14)   As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming;   

When God shows up although we do not see the Holy Spirit,  there are manifestations that can be seen. 

Old Testament:  Experiencing the Glory of God and what often happened.

Balaam was acting in disobedience and God was about to slay him, but his donkey saw the angel and stopped.  Balaam struck his animal and was surprised when the donkey spoke to him.  Numbers 22:31  Then the Lord opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the Angel of the Lord with His drawn sword in His hand; and he bowed his head and fell flat on his face.”

The Holy Spirit caused prostrate ministers to fall down and also to stand up.2 Chronicles 5:14 (KJV)  So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the house of God.

Ezekiel 2:2 As He spoke to me the Spirit entered me and set me on my feet; and I heard Him speaking to me.

Ezekiel; 3:12  Then the Spirit lifted me up, and I heard a great rumbling sound behind me, “Blessed by the glory of the Lord in His Place.”

Ezekiel  3:23-24  So I arose and went out into the plain, and behold, the glory of the Lord stood there, in His glory; and I fell on my face.   - - The Spirit then entered me and made me stand on my feet. 

Daniel 8:18  Now while he was talking with me, I sank into a deep sleep with my face to the ground; but he touched me and made me stand upright. 

In the New Testament there was recorded various manifestations of God and His Glory.

Matthew 17:6-8 And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were greatly afraid. But Jesus came and touched them and said, “Arise, and do not be afraid.” When they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. 

Here we have some non-believers and their reaction to the glory of God (Matthew 28:4)  And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men. 

When a person speaks, their breath goes forth.  Here we have the breath and words of Jesus pushing these soldiers to the ground.  John 18:6  Now when He said to them, “I am He, they drew back and fell to the ground.

Saul who later became Paul saw a great light and the glory of God caused him to fall on the ground. (Acts 9:4-8)  Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?”  And he said, “Who are You, Lord?”  Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting

John records his vision of Jesus in the book of Revelation 1:16-18  :”His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen.

Many Revivals in History tell of those who had similar experiences and would often lay on the floor for hours while God spoke with them.  Charles Finney, Charles Price, Maria B. Woodworth-Etter, and the Asuza Street Revival, were only a few and there were many more.   

When the presence of God is so real and thick, there are often demonstrations that many are quick to criticize.  We must be careful with our judgment; NOT to GRIEVE the HOLY SPIRIT.  Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 5:19  QUENCE NOT the Holy Spirit. 

We have a word of caution to you as you read about the different displays of emotions and manifestations. First, DO NOT seek the extraordinary signs.  Seek Jesus and HIM only.

SO WHAT TO DO IF - - -You are crying out to God for more of Jesus and you find yourself falling to the floor in His presence?  - -

Just do this:  Rest and don’t be quick to get up.  Ask Jesus what He desires to tell you.  Listen and remember what He is saying.  He may point out some things in your life that need changing.  Be quick to repent and obey. 

After awhile, get up and be sure to walk uprightly as you continue to abide in His presence. !!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Called to Be Christ Like

Jesus Brings New Life

Acts 11:25-26 Then departed Barnabas to Tarsus, for to seek Saul:  And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch.  And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people.  And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.

Pastor Allan began his message by welcoming some representatives from the Agape group at Butte College.  Pastor said his desire is to see God move in our schools and colleges.  I took notes and present a digested sermon here.

Yesterday was a co-operative pray walk over the streets of our city, with over 20 churches participating.  Pastor was assigned to walk near Oroville High School.  He felt compelled to sit on the steps and the Lord spoke to him that Oroville High would soon receive National Recognition - - the good kind. 
Each of us must take the responsibility to pray over the households in our neighborhood, as we walk or drive by.  Ask God for direction how to reach your neighbors. 

It is important to fix your personal problems before you come to pray over anyone else.  Reconciliation is needed to make things right with our brothers and sisters.  Open the gates and allow the Holy Spirit to direct your heartfelt prayers.  As we humble ourselves we are then ready to allow God to have His way in us and in our city.

In the next weeks we will be talking a lot about Jesus.  We see many who claim to be Christians, but they are not living the Christian life. 

Barnabas was sent to find Saul (who became Paul) and together they encouraged and taught the people at Antioch.  The people turned their lives over to Jesus, so much so, that they were know as “Like Christ.”  Living so close to Jesus that they were little Christ’s as they reflected Jesus; His character and attributes.  I want more of Jesus and Less of Me.

We will emulate Jesus the closer we get to Him.  You have seen a little child try to keep in step with their dad.  Sometimes their little legs must stretch to keep in contact with the parents foot prints.  We need to walk out our Christianity.

1.     First physically walk where Jesus says to go.  You may receive some scorn from others who do not understand why you are not doing certain things you used to do.  Some have had to quit their job as it was not pleasing to God.  They were ridiculed for doing so, but in the end they will be blessed.

2.     Allow the Holy Spirit to direct your steps.  Don’t allow inanimate objects to influence you.  Who and what you follow is what you become like.  Therefore let us be imitators of God, becoming more and more like Him.  Yes, walk like Him.

3.     Walk Faithful.  They will know we are Christians by our love.  As we show compassion and grace, there will be a break through.  When people have someone they look up to, they want to dress and be just like them. 

What does your imitation of Christ look like?  Are you following close to God?  Are you doing everything you should be doing?

Paul could say, “Follow me as I follow Christ.”  That was pretty bold to be able to say that.  We must not only claim a “title” but live what we claim.  Those with sloppy living give Christ a black eye.

The world is looking for reality and wants to see evidence of our claim.

The Bible says we are partakers of the divine nature, and to add to our faith due diligence to please God in all we do.

Some only know how to repeat the Lord’s prayer, so let us learn to pray, really pray and worship.  Let us receive the Word, and then bear fruit.

May we be Called Christians here at our city as the believers were at their city of Antioch. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Be Salty

Our Bible study teacher was speaking as I took notes and present her digested message.

Christians everywhere are being persecuted for the Gospel’s sake.  The atmosphere in our schools, work places and homes is important.

Recently an Egyptian Christian arriving in America was amazed to attend church and not be harassed.

1 Peter 2:9  But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar (special) people; that you should show forth the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

Jesus is our High Priest and we are the reflection of the kind of Life Christ lived.

How are we reflecting Christ and what description fits you and your life style?  Are you listening to the hurting and responding to their feelings and emotions?  We must tell the hurting that Jesus can fix it.

The priest had the responsibility to care for the temple, to light the incense and to make the sacrifice.

Keep busy serving, praying, studying and looking to share Jesus.    You can’t hold your breath forever.  Take time to take a deep breath.

Let salt be on our ears to heal our thoughts, and salt on our mouth to heal our words.  It is not about pushing away sin, but when there is more of Jesus there is no room for sin.

Worship changes you, so zero in on Jesus and what He has done.  Encounter the Holy Spirit and allow Him to Change you.

Jesus was gentle when he dealt with sinners.  We are reminded of the woman taken in adultery.  His harsh words were not to the woman but to the Religious leaders who felt superior and were haughty.

Satan calls you by your sin, but Jesus calls you by your name.  Let your conversation be honest even if you are criticized.  Some people jump to conclusions too quickly.  Slow down with your opinion, and be slow to anger.

God’s obligation is to shield you, and He gives the person freedom to make a different choice.  The truth is, some people are just mean. 

Our teacher told how she worked with such a woman, and she decided to wash the woman’s feet.  She prepared a pan of water and told the woman to remove her shoes.  The experience changed her attitude.  An apology will also change the atmosphere.

They thought it for evil, but God changed it to good.  Perception was changed, and so was attitude.  Eventually your forgiveness will come back to you.

When others come against you, watch your attitude.

Christ honored the Father and He preached in a loving way.  Take time to encounter God in the Word and in worship.  Spend more time with the Father in the throne room.

Rev. Lim, head pastor at the Light Presbyterian Church in Toronto, had visited North Korea more than 100 times to distribute humanitarian aid for nursing homes, day-care centers and orphanages. Recently it was revealed that Lim had been arrested, brutally beaten and accused of trying to overthrow the country and establish a religious state.

We ask why did God allow this?  It was insanity, but all was processed for good.  God loved North Korea so much to send someone to minister to his people.

God loves those who live and work near you and He sends you to let your light shine in order to bring them to Christ.


Sunday, January 3, 2016

Pursue God More in 2016

Pursue God More in 2016
Pastor Allan was speaking about 2015 as I took notes and present his digested sermon.
2015 brought us lots of ups and downs, but we have Jesus.  There were lots of spiritual victories and good wins. 
The presence of God has been so real in our services and as we enter 2016 we need to keep our spiritual eyes and ears open for His leading.  We are expecting great things for the coming year.
Our society is moving quickly toward being Anti-Christ, but the Bible will continue to have the answers.   

We have the Holy Spirit to comfort, bless, guide, and we are blessed with anointed ministers to preach truth.
Things in this world may change, but our God never changes.  The Word of God is sure and perfect.  Our job is to spread the Word. 

The best way to do that is to be faithful to live our live as an example for others.
Revelation 1:8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
No matter what decisions are made – God will do as He pleases.   Our goal for 2016 is to Pursue God further than we did last year.
In the Garden God said, Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed, He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.  
God’s plan for salvation has never changed.  His plan was in effect prior to the fall, and He made provision for a Savior.  God has not forgotten you.

Between Mary being obedient and Jesus being willing to become the provision for the ultimate sacrifice, God's plan was put into action.  We are challenged to press forward, no matter what.  No backward steps, only ahead, we must press forward.

If you are not satisfied where you are in Christ, know this, that God has not changed His plan for you.  His love never changes.

Jesus Cried out.  "Father forgive them for they know not what they do."

This past week, someone came into the church and took Pastor's jacket.  My friend wanted to go after her, but I said, "Let it go, I forgive her."

In 2016 let us love a bit more and forgive more often.  Having said this, be ready for a test, because the test will come. 

When people come into our church, we need to show them love and acceptance, for this may be the only time we will see them.  The more we learn to forgive, it increases our capacity to love. 

Through the Spirit of Love, comes Kindness and Joy.

The "church" as a whole has relaxed their stance on "Good and Evil."  We need to get back to the basics.

Let God use you in 2016.  First "Believe."  We must not forget who it is we serve. 

Are we going to believe City Hall who tells us Jesus Christ is not acceptable?  Are we going to believe the doctors' bad report?  Who are we going to follow?  Are we going to pursue the world or God?

It is not wrong to have nice things, just thank God you are blessed and don't allow things to come between you and God.

Jeremiah 29 - and you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

God will listen when you cry out and seek His face.  Getting close to God is a necessity, and more important than breathing.  Taking steps backward only makes things worse.

No matter who is elected in November of this year, it will not change God's plans.

This is the season to pursue God.  What worked last season will not work now.  The leaves fall off the trees, but Spring is coming with new blossoms and fresh fruit.  The old songs are stale; we need new songs in the Night.

Happiness is circumstantial, but joy is everlasting.

So it really doesn't matter if Pastor Allan's jacket is stolen - - Joy, Joy, Joy in my heart.

This season, we are done with Christmas, but we are not done with Hope.
Acts 16:24-25 the jailer was told to keep Paul and Silas secure. Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.  But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.

No matter what their circumstances Paul and Silas knew how to praise and worship God.

We know of a man who spent 35 years in prison, where he found Christ and began a ministry where he was then located.  Serve Jesus where you are and praise Him always.

A change of scenery doesn't change you, for God is always the same and His love and His plan never changes.

Our desire is that Open Door Church will experience a move of God never expected before; and may God in 2016 be our strength, our provision and comfort as we go out to enter our personal mission field.