Thursday, March 21, 2013

Power of Prayer

This will be short but sweet.
Charles Spurgeon talked about a "Boiler Room".  This Boiler Room is not the typical that provides heat for the church to keep our bodies warm, but to provide heat for the church to keep our Spirit on FIRE!  The readers digest version of this story go like this.....During one of Spurgeons sermons it was claimed to be miraculous to have over 3000 people attend a particular church service.  When told this, Spurgeon replied "the miracle was in the 200 people in the basement praying for this service".

What a blessing it is to be able to pray for each other.  What a blessing it is to have someone else trust you so much that they ask you to pray for them.  What a blessing it is to pray for your church and get to watch what happens as God responds.  I have been greatly blessed to have gotten in on a prayer group through my church.  It's all treated as confidential information but how awesome is it to pray for people that you know and love?  Some people share their issues and request for prayer, some leave their concerns but do so anonymously, while others leave unspoken prayers to be lifted up.  I am absolutely blessed to get to pray for these friends, neighbors, and often family.  As I prayed through the email this morning I knew I had to share this.  Someone of you that is reading this needs to be involved in this type of ministry.  If your church has a prayer ministry, approach the pastor and volunteer.  If they don't have one as why not and how have we made it this long without one!  or better yet, start one..... You only need confidentiality and a loving heart.  Remember if you're praying for the needs of others in your church, they may not want their needs to be common knowledge.

If you don't have a prayer list or know of anyone that needs prayer, pray for me.  I am always willing to pray and more than willing to accept an offer of prayer from anyone that is willing to pray.

Father God
Thank You for allowing us to talk directly to You
Thank You for allowing us to care enough for each other that we bring many concerns to You
Thank You for allowing us to sometimes see the fruits of this labor of love
Thank You for Loving us


Monday, March 18, 2013

How can a Loving God send someone to Hell?

A question that has worked it's way through the ages.....  Anyone that has been involved in a college ministry has probably heard this at some point.  If you have ever tried to share just a tid bit of the Gospel to a non-believer, you may have heard this.   " I just can't believe in a God that is supposed to be so Loving but yet condemns people to Hell....."  and there are obviously other variations of the same phrase.  How do we answer a statement like this?  Carefully!  If you get too "Apologetic" in your response, the conversation can get heated quickly.  If you're too wishy washy, you look like you don't know why you believe. 
My response has been something along these lines.  It's not God that wants to send people to Hell.  He is responding to the desires of the Human heart.  As a Loving God, He wants us to seek a relationship with Him and provides a means to do so.  We as a free willed human can either pull God close or we can push Him away.  In either action God will honor our desires.  So it is not God sending a person to Hell, it's that person doing it to themselves......God is just honoring their desire to be away from Him. 

Revelation 3:20 (ESV)
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

God is not pushy in trying to develop a relationship with us but He is consistent.   God doesn't force anything on us.  We can either enter into a relationship with Him or we can push Him away.  Jesus will continue to knock on the door of our hearts......but it's up to us to invite Him in.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Sweating the Small Stuff.....Counting Blessings

We are often told "Don't sweat the small stuff"..... well so many blessings come With the small stuff.  In fact there are just so many small blessings that we receive every day that we ( or at least I) find them easy to overlook, or just don't recognize them as a blessing.  My shower time in the morning usually becomes morning prayer time as well.  It usually starts off with a cold blast of water followed by a warming....then a nice hot, steamy shower.....That's usually when it starts, "Thank you Lord for this warm water..." I move from there and just remember so many of the "Small Stuff"  that has or is blessing me.  One of the biggest blessings that tends to be overlooked is our location.  Here, we are in the United States of America, a place that we can still worship and serve our God freely.  I know many things are getting closer to being persecution but that shouldn't stop us from doing what we know we need to do.  Many times I thank God for the mug of Coffee when it's exceptionally good on the ride to work.  When we flip the switch and lights come on, when the refrigerator is still working, when we can use indoor plumbing......would you believe that there are places in NC that still don't have those accommodations?  Just like having a computer I can use to write this Blog.....BLESSING!!!  The birds singing, the sun shining, a briskness in the air, friends, family, and a Loving God.....

Thank You God for the many many Blessings You have found to provide us with
Thank You for things we often overlook or just don't recognize as a blessing because it has become such a part of our everyday life that it's just "normal"
Thank You for Your everlasting Love

Go out today and count your blessings.....and yes, do sweat the small stuff!  ;)