Saturday, December 20, 2014

Larrikin (James 3:15-17)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is “larrikin.”  I have always been told by my mentor that wisdom is one of the most important traits of a Christian.  We see in today’s passage that James is pretty adamant about helping people look towards serving others rather than trying to gain personal position.  The people in this church were being attacked by the Evil One and it was up to James to set them straight.

“This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy…” ~Jam 3:15-17


My question is: what is the wisdom that you seek, and to whom do you look to receive it?  I think there’s a lot that one can learn by just reading God’s word, but it takes a whole new level of faith and understanding to put your trust into someone that knows more than you.  As we see in today’s passage, wisdom comes from heaven.  And if we want to avoid the larrikins – those who have ill intentions, and cause commotion - we must look to gain wisdom daily.  My prayer is that you put aside any personal negative thoughts and decided to get a little bit better each day; ask other strong Christians to help you through the journey.  Why not start today?!

Praying for you,


MO

Friday, December 19, 2014

Mysophobia (Isaiah 64:1-10)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is "mysophobia.”  We see some pretty strong language from Isaiah in today’s prassage.  We have to realize that at this time in history, God had done some pretty miraculous things for the people of Israel.  However, they looked right past all of the great things that the Lord is doing and attributed the blessings that they had received to their own righteousness.  For this, God set a pretty hard rebuke on them.  In fact, we can see by his language in this passage, that Isaiah grouped himself with these simple people.

“For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.” ~Isaiah 64:6


My question is: where do you look to find justification in righteousness?  I learned early on in my Christian journey that my own acts and deeds were not going to be good enough to get me through this life and to heaven.  That was the essence of accepting Jesus into my life.  No matter how good I thought I could be, it would never be adequate to pay for the innumerable sins that plagued my life both before and during my time as a Christian.  My prayer is that you heed the words of Isaiah this morning, and that you think God for the blessings he has the stowed upon you, because of his righteousness.  We must live somewhat of a mysohpobia, or fear of filth.  We need to stay away from that which makes our soul unclean.  Nothing that we have done warrants the blessings of God, and we should always remember that it is by his grace and mercy that we continue to have favor in his sight.  Live in the truth of that righteousness today!

Praying for you,


MO

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Beforetime (Galatians 3:27-29)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is “beforetime.”  I love this time of year because I always seem to have pretty good conversations with people who have yet to accept Jesus as personal Lord and Savior. Today’s passage gives us all reassurance that God is in control and that the changes he made, deciding to allow each of us into his family, is a representation of his abounding love and yearning to have a relationship with his people.

“There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” ~Gal. 3:28


My question is: during this season of reflection, what are the areas of your life that most come to mind?  I know that God has made us very unique, but Christmas time is a reminder that we all do share one thing in common.  As a follower of Christ, my prayer for you is that this season reminds you of your acceptance into God's family.  And, that you help others to see why they would want to have a relationship with God.  We are not living as beforetime without him; we are called to be in his presence and give glory by calling others into relationship with the Most High.

Praying for you,


MO

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Subfuscous (Psalm 113:1-9)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is "subfuscous.”  I have been to more Christian camps then I know what to do with.  The funny part is, I didn't really start going until I was a senior in high school.  I actually remember what Kevin went through to make sure that I was able to fit camp in my schedule prior to that school year.  From then on, I was hooked.  I began to do more, serve more, and be at more camps each summer.  My favorite was always junior high camp.  Those kids are awesome!  They are all over the place, and their faith, as well as the rest of their emotions, they wear on their sleeves.  The following verse sticks out in my mind and reminds me of junior high camp every time I read it.

“Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord, you his servants; praise the name of the Lord. Let the name of the Lord be praised, both now and forevermore. From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised.” ~Ps. 113:1-3


My question is: how do you praise God?  My favorite song to ever sing at camp was one that included these verses.  I can still remember like it was yesterday, as I sing them in my head.  That song and that verse made such an impact on my life that it will be etched in my memory forever.  From the early morning sunrise, to the waning subfuscous hours of the early evening… God will make his name known.  My prayer is that you have more encounters with God where he impresses upon your soul and writes on your heart his words.  The more you read and hear God's word, and the more you actively remember, the more affect it can have in your life.

Praying for you,


MO

Monday, December 15, 2014

Thalassic (Mark 4:35-41)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is “thalassic.”  Jesus had a ton of authority.  But the funny thing is, even though the disciples were with him every single day, they still do not completely get it.  In fact, and our passage today we see that the disciples did not trust Jesus fully.  And, I guess we can’t really blame them.  If you are in a pretty crazy storm, I think that any of us might feel the same way.

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!” ~Mark 4:35-41


My question is: how much do you trust Jesus in each area of your life?  Sometimes we give lip service to the reality, which is we do not necessarily believe in God’s power or have as much trust or faith as we would like to think.  I don’t blame the guys in the boat with Jesus necessarily for having little or no faith. It seems like they had a pretty tough day.  But, I think that this story is an illustration of how Jesus is definitely Lord over all things, whether on land, or in thalassic matters, which is itself on the sea.  My prayer is that you trust God a little bit more today than you did yesterday.  This process is long, and sometimes arduous, as the disciples found out the hard way.  You could do it though.

Praying for you,

MO

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Whippersnapper (1 Timothy 4:11-13)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is “whippersnapper.”  One of the things that I really like about the book of 1 Timothy is the encouragement that Paul gives in.  We know that Timothy is a young man because of the stuff that Paul says to him.  In fact in today’s passage, we can kind of tell that Timothy might’ve been feeling discouraged, maybe that others did not take him seriously because of his youthfulness.  But, could you imagine having Paul as a teacher?  I think the people that were ridiculing Timothy had no idea how uninformed they were.


“Prescribe and teach these things. Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe. Until I come, give attention to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation and teaching…” ~1 Timothy 4:11-13


My question is: what are the inadequacies that you feel in your life?  Is there anything that holds you back from getting out there and achieving the goals that God would have in front of you?  I remember at the beginning of my professional ministry, I was very young.  My mentor pointed to this book in the Bible, and specifically this passage, on more than one occasion.  He told me to rise above the ridicule and that even though a lot of people might think that I was an unqualified whippersnapper, I was really a child of God who was called to spread the word.  You have been called to do the same!  Go out and make a difference today.

Praying for you


MO

Friday, December 12, 2014

Verbigeration (1 Timothy 1:1-7)

Good morning ladies,

The word of the day is “verbigeration.”  During my initial years of the Christian life I was often drawn to this book in the Bible.  The reason is that my mentor, and the man who had eventually led me into a relationship with Jesus, told me that my life needed to be similar to the young man to whom Paul is talking.

“But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. For some men and women, straying from these things, have turned aside to fruitless discussion, wanting to be teachers of the Law, even though they do not understand either what they are saying or the matters about which they make confident assertions.” ~1 Timothy 1:5-7


My question is: what are the things in life that you give most of your time?  The Apostle Paul understood the importance of keeping one's heart pure, and new that the words that came along with this task were pertinent.  As Christians, we do not have the luxury of engaging in verbigeration, but instead our words need to have complete and full meaning.  In your quest to become a better person, my prayer is that you choose your words carefully, and help others to feel encouraged.  One of the most significant ways Christians can keep themselves separate from the ways of this world is to speak truth, and love.

Praying for you,

MO