There Was, Still is, a friend.

JUST IN THE MOOD TO REBLOG AN OLD POST ABOUT MYSELF. I NEVER GOT AROUND POSTING THE PICTURE THAT I ACCIDENTALLY DELETED. IT MIGHT BE ON MY RARELY VISIT FACEBOOK PAGE.

From The Darkness Into The Light

I just received the third Picture in 2 weeks from a younger friend of my father. My father will be 80 years old this year. Mom and Dad always had around younger people having in them a capability to grasp young and older people attention and affection. For a few years, I was a happy 7, 8 and 9 years old because of music. These young sixties Italian friends were different from their generation peers. Dad and about a dozen young man in Milan put together the first NewOrleans band in Italy before he met my mom. After they married,  my parents spent many nights playing music in clubs and took me with them.

I loved that smell of beer and wine in the air plus the dusk cloud if smoke even when I was so very tired and would fall asleep anywhere. I would have never changed this new…

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Stressing and Obsessing – Greg Laurie Daily Devotion – February 26, 2020

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Stressing and Obsessing

“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?” (Matthew 6:25 nlt)

People today are dying for cool selfies, and it’s becoming a problem. We’re continually seeing articles about another person who fell to his or her death getting that last great shot. Or others will Photoshop themselves because they want to look a certain way.

We’ll think so much about how we look, but Jesus said we aren’t to be obsessed with these things. In the Sermon on the Mount He said, “Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are” (Matthew 6:28–29 nlt).

Jesus was not saying that we shouldn’t think about these things. He’s saying that we shouldn’t get stressed about it. In other words, “Why do you stress so much about the way you look? Why do you get so concerned about your wardrobe?”

A few verses earlier, He used another illustration: birds. In verse 26 Jesus said, “Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?” (nlt). The birds gather their food every day. They do their due diligence. But have you ever seen a stressed-out bird?

We have a heavenly Father who promises to take care of us. And if He takes care of little birds, then will He not take care of us as well?

However, we also can go too far the other way. Some people need to give a little more thought to their appearance. Jesus is not saying that we shouldn’t think about the way we look. Rather, He is telling us not to be obsessed with these things—especially at the expense of spiritual things.

Copyright © 2020 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.

For more relevant and biblical teaching from Pastor Greg Laurie, go to www.harvest.org
and
Listen to Greg Laurie‘s daily broadcast on OnePlace.com.

Watch Greg Laurie‘s weekly television broadcast on LightSource.com.

Hey Pastors, Don’t Forget Your Main Job! – From His Heart – February 26

HEY PASTORS, DON’T FORGET YOUR MAIN JOB!

I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction.
2 Timothy 4:1-2

In 1996, I enrolled as a freshman MDIV student at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, NC. God had called me into the ministry in the summer of 1995, and the next step on my journey was theological training. After exploring the various Baptist seminaries, Debbie and I felt God leading us to SEBTS.

SEBTS had a storied history. Founded on the campus of Wake Forest University in 1951, the seminary was soon infected with theological liberalism (questioning, diluting, and discounting the veracity of Scripture) that quietly spread for many years. Instead of extolling the truths of the Bible, a growing number of the faculty seemed to revel in “educating” their students on what they considered were errors and fallacies in the Word of God. Thankfully, the course of the school was redirected in the late 1980s. By the time I arrived in the summer of 1996, the school was staunchly conservative in its theology, and every professor on campus was a solid, Bible-believing Christian educator.

My Old Testament Professor, Dr. Stephen Andrews, experienced the days of liberalism at SEBTS. He recounted a true story from a seminary chapel service that occurred in the 1980s. Tragically, the chapel speaker opted to forgo the Bible in order to tell a story from Geoffrey Chaucer involving a man named Chanticleer and his dung cow. My prof was incredulous and heartsick as he thought, what have we become as a seminary? Why are we replacing the Word of God for a story about a dung cow?

FAST FORWARD

Many churches today do the very same thing as was done at SEBTS in the 1980s. They jettison the clear command to “preach the word” in order to inject feel good fables and myths that appeal to a self-centered crowd. Our nation is filled with “dung cow” sermons that teach a hipper, cooler, more palatable form of inoffensive Christianity. Like Lite Beer from Miller, this type of preaching “tastes great and is less filling”—the only problem is it doesn’t save!

THE JOB OF EVERY PASTOR/PREACHER

The Bible makes it crystal clear that the job of every pastor is to love the Lord and His people, be an example to the flock, and preach the Word of God without stutter, stammer, apology, or equivocation. Preachers are not to tickle ears with myths but step on toes with truth. According to 2 Timothy 4:2, the Scripture reproves and rebukes before it exhorts. According to 2 Timothy 3:16, the Bible is “profitable for teaching” (it tells you what is right), “for reproof” (it tells you what’s not right), “for correction” (it tells you how to get right), and “for training in righteousness” (it tells you how to stay right).

In these last days in which we live, it is critical that we throw away the “dung cow” sermons and start preaching the Word of God, letting the chips fall where they may. Will the world like it? No! Will it be offensive to their Romans 1 mindset? Yes! Will it expose the darkness? It always does!

As preachers, our main objective is not to be funny or creative or ingenious or popular. Our main objective is to be faithful to preach the Word and speak the truth in love. One day, every God-called pastor will stand before the Lord to give an account of his ministry. Were we faithful to speak the truth of His Word and take a stand for righteousness (like Noah did), regardless of popularity or public opinion? Were we willing to face unpleasant consequences to get the unadulterated message out to a lost and dying world … or did we opt for a more palatable, acceptable Christianity Lite? Did we jettison the clear and cutting message of the Word for the inoffensive, fanciful story of Chanticleer and his dung cow?

I am often reminded of the prayer the apostles prayed when threatened by the Sanhedrin to quit preaching Jesus: “And now, Lord, take note of their threats, and grant that Your bond-servants may speak Your word with all confidence” (Acts 4:29). May that be our prayer in these dark days in which we live. May we be faithful to shine for Christ, share His story, and straightforwardly warn those on the broad road to flee from the wrath that is to come.

Love,

Pastor Jeff Schreve,
From His Heart Ministries


Dr. Jeff Schreve believes that no matter how badly you may have messed up in life, God still loves you and has a wonderful plan just for you. From His Heart provides real truth, love and hope on over 700 radio stations each day, in 182 countries each week on TV, and is always available online.  Pastor Jeff takes no income from this ministry. All donations go to furthering the broadcast outreach. As a listener/viewer supported ministry, we thank you for joining with us to help speak the truth in love to a lost and hurting world. Go to www.fromhisheart.org for more information.

God Promises His Will – First15 – February 26

God Promises His Will

Weekly Overview:

There is only one constant in this ever-changing world, and that’s the character of our heavenly Father. The very earth itself is undergoing changes constantly. What seems the most immovable now will one day be done away with. But God is unchanging. God is unwavering. He’s completely faithful and committed to seeing through the promises he’s made you. As we look this week at the promises of God may you ground yourself in his unchanging love. May God’s character become your source and refuge—your constant and unshakable foundation.

Scripture:“Making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.” Ephesians 1:9-10

Devotional:

In the life of Jesus, God illustrated not only his nearness to us, but his desire to co-labor with us in his plans of redemption for all peoples, all generations and all of creation. And within God’s desire to partner with us on the earth lies an incredible promise he makes to his people: God promises to share with us the knowledge of his will. An incredible example of God sharing his will with his people is displayed in Ephesians 1:7-12:

In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 

Paul tells us that God, through the death of Jesus, revealed the mystery of his will to his people. Jesus’ death tells us of God’s incredible plan to reconcile everything around us to himself. God’s plan set throughout the ages revealed itself in Jesus’ actions. However, Scripture doesn’t only describe a single time God revealed the mystery of his will. The Bible is clear that God desires for his people to continually know his will.

Romans 12:1-2 says, “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” In the renewing of your mind to God’s truth, you position yourself to continually discern the “good and acceptable and perfect” will of God. How amazing! Not only does God want you to know his will, but he’s given you an incredible tool to do so in the renewing of your mind.

Take time today to seek his will through Scripture, listening to the Holy Spirit and seeking counsel from those who are in tune with God’s heart. Allow him to reveal his will in whatever way he desires. Spend time in his presence letting him reveal the desires of his heart. And align yourself with his unceasing faithfulness as he speaks and leads you throughout your day. May you discern the “good and acceptable and perfect” will of God today as you spend time in guided prayer.

Guided Prayer:

1. Meditate on God’s desire to share with you the knowledge of his will.

“Making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.”Ephesians 1:9-10

2. Where in your life do you need God’s guidance? Where do you need direction?

3. Ask God to give you the knowledge of his will. Listen for him to direct you right now. Pay attention to any Scripture that come to mind. Trust that God speaks and wants you to know his will.

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:1-2

God wants to speak to you throughout your day, influencing the various decisions you make. Your heavenly Father loves you. As a good Father, he longs to share with you what’s best for you, and he’ll do so in the best way possible. Trust and listen today, and live your life in response to the life-giving knowledge of God’s will.

Extended Reading: Romans 12

For more information on today’s devotional click here!

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