Fix Your Eyes

Thought for the Day

Fixing our eyes on Jesus is not about looking for Him in the midst of our mess, for He stands apart from it all. No, we must completely turn from everything around us in order to turn to Him. Then we will see Him and only Him and when we do then we will know His peace and the joy of His presence.

God, help me to fix my eyes only on You, turning my back on everything else in my life trusting You to take care of it all. I want You only.

I Trust You

Thought for the Day
Sometimes the hardest thing to do is nothing. To give up control and wait on God. Through it we learn patience. More than that though, we learn to let God be in control and follow His lead even when that means doing nothing but trusting Him.
 
My prayer, “I’m not in control, God, and I don’t want to be.So when I try to take it back from Your hands, Lord, let Your Spirit remind me.’Cause even though I don’t know Your plans, I know that they are good,’cause You are good. So good to me.”
 
I do trust You.

10 Things to be thankful for from God’s Word

Thought for the Day

10 Things I’m thankful for from God’s Word because they comfort me in the trials and pain of life.

God, I thank You that:

You are in control of everything and You work all of it out for my good. (Romans 8:28)

You are close to the brokenhearted and You rescue those who are crushed in spirit. (Ps. 34:18)

Even if everyone else should forsake me, You will never leave or abandon me. (Heb. 13:5)

You have seen every tear that I’ve cried and kept and made note of them all. (Ps. 56:8)

One day You will wipe every tear from my eyes and forever take away all my pain. (Rev. 21:4)

The suffering I experience doesn’t compare to what you’re about to reveal in me – the radiance of Your glory. (Romans 8:18)

You never allow me to get too far of course before You whisper in my ear, “This is the way to go.” (Isiah 30:21)

Your unfathomable peace guards my heart and mind when I give my burdens to You. (Phil. 4:7)

You’re the best friend I could ever have because You laid down Your life for me. (John 15:13)

You always have hold of my hand so that though I stumble I cannot ever fall down. (Ps. 37:24)

I Choose Love

Thought for the Day

Love is not always accepted and love is not always returned to us, yet it must always be given. If we only love those who return our love how are we different from the world? Do we only invest in others when we have a reasonable expectation of return? Or do we love and invest in others for their sake and God’s glory, no matter what we see in this life, trusting in God that all we’ve done for Him is not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58). God, help me to love as You do – always patient, always hoping, and never failing (1 Corinthians 13:4-8). I choose to love no matter what.

All Things

Thought for the Day

“God causes all things to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28

I love that it says “all things” not just some or even most but all things. Every stupid decision, ever mistake, every heart ache, and all the pain along the way. He takes it all and somehow – like only He can – He brings good out of it. It reminds me that God makes note of my tears (Ps. 56:8). He has seen them all and will make use of every single one.

Nothing Like Your Love

My Song Lyrics

Your voice is
The sweetest melody I’ve ever heard
It echoes
Through my heart and whispers by Your Word
I hear You
And destiny is calling out my name
I feel You
And with Your touch I’ll never be the same
Day after day

Your love has given me hope
Your love has healed my heart
Your love has restored my soul
Your love has banished the dark
In everything You give
And in all that You are
There’s nothing like Your love, Jesus
Nothing like Your love

Your grace is
The strength inside that keeps me hanging on
Your presence
My joy in life until the breaking dawn
I need You
So let Your peace calm this troubled mind
I see You
For You alone I leave the world behind
And I find

Your love has given me hope
Your love has healed my heart
Your love has restored my soul
Your love has banished the dark
In everything You give
And in all that You are
There’s nothing like Your love, Jesus
Nothing like Your love

I find my life within You
I find that I am truly free
All that I am is for You
‘Cause You gave it all for me

Your love has given me hope
Your love has healed my heart
Your love has restored my soul
Your love has banished the dark
In everything You give
And in all that You are
There’s nothing like Your love, Jesus
Nothing like Your love

Be a Family for the Lonely

Thought for the Day

I guarantee you’ve seen them but chances are you didn’t notice them – the lonely ones. The ones who sit by themselves all the time. The ones who wander the halls and foyer of your church hoping that someone will notice, really notice them, hoping for the chance to talk and connect, and ultimately hoping for somewhere to belong. You’ve seen them but have you really looked at them? Seen the longing in their eyes, heard the emptiness in their voice, felt the ache in their heart? And if you have, what did you do about it? A hug? A prayer? A kind word? While those things are good they’re only good for a few minutes. So what can you do? Be their family.

Scripture says that ”God places the lonely in families (Ps 68:6)”. Sure, He might give them a family of their own -spouse and children – but till then they still need a family. They need your family. They need you to truly be part of their lives, to invest in them and draw out the best in them. I can hear some of you saying, “But I don’t have time for that.” You have time for what you make time for, it’s just a matter of priorities. Besides, being a family for the lonely is commanded in Scripture it’s just referred to differently. It’s said in ways like, “practice hospitality (Romans 12:13)” and to take care of the foreigner, stranger, widow, orphan.

The problem is no one really practices these things (not that I know of anyway) and the question is: “Why not?” Most likely the answer is “familial-self-absorbtion” (and yes I made that word up). Here’s what I mean by it: each family(and with very few exceptions I mean the most immediate family) ultimately only ever truly gives thought to those who are already part of that family – either by blood, marriage, or legal adoption – and rarely (if ever) extends family considerations to anyone else. It’s as though each family is it’s own highly exclusive club and while the various clubs might sometimes do things together in the end they are still separate groups. But does anyone really think that God intended for it to be that way among His people? Isn’t it supposed to be, “in Christ we… form one body (Romans 12:5)” Of course it is.

I hope that at this point you’re asking, “How do we become a family for the lonely?” First you have to find them, you have to learn how to truly see them, because I can promise you that they are all around you, desperate to be seen. Pray and ask God to show you the ones around you who need to be part of your family. Once you’ve found them and established a basic relationship with them the next step is simple – invite them in. Invite them to celebrate life with you. Invite them over for holidays, birthdays (yours and theirs) and any other celebrations. This part is very important because the lonely often have no one to spend this time with and end up going through holidays and significant life events all alone. In doings these things and reaching out to the lonely ones all around you, the church will finally and truly be what it’s meant to be – a family.

Everything We Need – Conclusion

Mini Sermon

Point to Ponder

Have you taken the necessary first step by putting your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins? This is the first and most important thing that God asks you to do: “What God wants you to do is believe in the One He sent (John 6:29)”. If you have done this, then make sure that you have also been baptized. It is a powerful symbol and will help you to grasp the truth of your unity with Christ in His death and resurrection. Next, get to know the Scriptures and all the “great and precious promises” contained in them. They are for you and you can claim every single one. Every description of the believers in Christ is also true of you and God desires to see it all manifested in your life for God is, “no respecter of persons” (Deuteronomy 10:17, Galatians 2:6). Ask Him to change you, embracing His Word in faith, and get ready to see yourself change – expect it. It is to God’s glory that you “bear much fruit” (John 15:8). Refuse to live under sin anymore for “it desires to rule over you, but you must master it (Genesis 4:7)”, and God will help you.

Let’s pray, “God of heaven and earth, thank You for loving us so much that You sent Your Son to die for us (John 3:16) that we might be forgiven and cleansed – brought into relationship with You. We have confessed our sins before You and believe that each of us in “a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17) in Christ. We believe Your Word and embrace the truth that we have been “crucified with Christ” (Galatians 2:20) and have been raised to newness of life (Romans 6:4) with a new heart indwelt by Your precious Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 36:25-27). And now we ask with all faith and certainty, knowing that since we are asking in line with Your will that You hear us and answer us (1 John 5:14-15), we ask for the empowerment of Your Spirit that in knowing and claiming Your Word we do indeed have everything that we need for life and godliness through Your great and precious promises. Help us to empty ourselves that we may be filled full of You (Ephesians 3:19) and just as You have won the victory and given us the victory over sin – help us to walk in that victory. Lord, we want to live in obedience, righteousness, and holiness – to Your glory. We know that this is the very thing that You have desired to work in us. Thank You for not giving up on us. We commit ourselves to You right now – to live in absolute surrender to You every day that we may truly experience the abundant life (John 10:10) that You have promised us. Thank You for all that You have done, are doing, and will do – for us, in us, and through us. May Your Name be greatly praised forever! Amen.”

“And now, to Him who is able to keep you from falling and present you faultless before the presence of His glory – with exceeding joy – to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power, and authority through Jesus Christ our Lord, through all generations, forever and ever! Amen. (Jude 1:24-25)”