“But someone will say, ‘you have faith and I have works.’ Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works” (James 2:18) and, “For as the body apart from the spiritis dead, so also faith apart from works is dead” (James 2:26).

Saturday, February 14, 2015

God's Valentine, from Ginger

“God’s Valentine”

During winter I miss seeing God’s “love messages” along my daily walks.
It is too early to see the heart-shaped red bud and grape leaves, as well as the bleeding heart blossoms. But photos from past seasons revive my spirit in winter. It is also a good season to stay warm indoors reading God’s Word, wrapped in His love
 John the Beloved wrote, God is love. These three short words were so important that he repeated them a few lines later. Then John followed them with…We love, because He first loved us (1 John 4:8,16,19). He wanted everyone to know true love comes from God and is all about Him.

We often can feel the warm light of God's love that surpasses human understanding - but sometimes, "stuff happens" that casts a shadow.

 Recently I had a disturbing dream where I was caught in a judgmental meeting and couldn’t escape. Long before dawn, I woke in distress, not only from the dream but also recent circumstances. Arising and going to my prayer journal, I poured my frustrated feelings onto page after page. I knew how I should feel – blessed with all my needs supplied by God – but I also confessed I did not feel peace and comfort. I opened my Bible to a passage that included: our God is near us whenever we pray to Him (Deuteronomy 4:7). Tears clouded my vision. As I grabbed a tissue, I glanced out the window.
In the dark sky above the trees, I saw a sliver of the moon. Wiping my eyes, I focused on it. I could not see the whole moon, but I knew it was there.

Looking back at my desk, I opened Jesus Calling. “Stay in continual communication with Me, so that you can live above your circumstances. …Present your requests to Me with thanksgiving, and My Peace, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your heart and mind.” Without condemning me, the reassuring words confirmed I was on the right path.

When daylight finally came, I still could only see a sliver of the moon. Suddenly a thought flashed through my mind. It was not my fault that I couldn't see the full moon. Earth was keeping me from it. I just had to be patient.

Turning again to my desk, I read another passage. Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation, or shifting shadow (James 1:17). Dr. David Jeremiah had written, “We thank Him for the sunrise, for the air we breathe and the friends we love, for the verses we study and the strength we derive from Him. We learn to count our blessings, minimize our complaints, rejoice in the Lord, and obey the words of Jesus: Be of good cheer.”

In the dark, I had risen from my bed in distress. Now in His light, I arose from my chair with joy. God hears our prayers, speaks to our hearts, and responds to our needs because He loves us. With Him, there is no better way to start the day, even when we can only see a sliver—at the moment.

faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:13).

Thursday, February 5, 2015

We Believe

Christians believe in God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit in One God:

  •  Psalm 19:1-- The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands
  • 1 Timothy 2:5 5-- For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, 
  •  Acts 2:38 38-- Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."  

Christians believe the Bible is the true word of God:
  • 2 Timothy 3:16 16-- All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,
  • 2 Peter 1:19-21--19 We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. 20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
We believe that God sent his Son, Jesus to pay our sin debt:

  • Galatians 2:20--20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
  • Colossians 2: 13--13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you[a] alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.