Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Love your enemies

But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. — Matthew 5:44- 45 (NIV)




President Lincoln was once taken to task for his attitude toward his enemies. "why do you try to make friends of them?" asked an associate. "You should try and destroy them."

"Am I not destroying my enemies," Lincoln replied gently, "when I make them my friends?




These Christians love each other even before they are acquainted. —Saint Celsus

Friday, February 20, 2009

You did it for Me

more wild sunflower

The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. ~ Matthew 25:40



How is it to be explained - the very heart and mystery of the Christian faith? To soothe those battered old heads, to grasp those poor [leprous] stumps, to take in one's arms those children consigned to dustbins, because it is his head, as they are his stumps and his children, of whom he said that whosoever received one such child in his name received Him. — Malcolm Muggeridge

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Loved by God

Rhododendron


"I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me."      ~  Galatians 2:20 (NASB)

____________


When one has been saved by grace, through faith, through Christ alone — they become a new person.  Their old person is dead. Their sinful life was crucified on the cross with Christ. They become a new creation. They are no longer condemned by the Law. The self-centered self now becomes the Christ-centered self.   Through Christ alone they live — enjoy a present life,  and have the hope of future glory.

_____________

It is difficult to make a man miserable while he feels he is worthy of himself and claims kindred to the great God who made him.
~ Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Filled with the Spirit

Butterflyweed-s, originally uploaded by Ransome.


Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
~ Ephesians 5:18-20 NIV ~






This verse does not give us a song to sing -- but it tell us to keep on singing. When we are filled with the Spirit will be filled with JOY. We can express this joy in song. Thankfully, we don't have to sing well -- just sing. Perhaps you are not the type to become so dramatic and expressive in you faith. Everyone is different. It is not so terribly important how much Holy Spirit you have. It is important how much the Holy Spirit has of you.






Never mind how beautiful or pitiful you may sound. Sing loud enough to drown out those defeating thoughts that normally clamor for attention. Release yourself from that cage of introspective reluctance --SING OUT! You are not auditioning for the choir, you are making melody with your heart.

If you listen closely when you're through, you may hear the hosts of heaven shouting for joy. Then again, it might be your neighbor ... screaming for relief.

~ Charles Swindoll, Growing Strong in the Seasons of Life




God's Love

Forsythia blossom

Neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. — Romans 8:38 – 39

_________
One time a father wanted to teach his son the lesson of God’s great goodness. He took him to the top of a high hill and pointed northward over Scotland, southward over England, eastward over the ocean, westward over the hill and valley, and then sweeping his arm around the whole circling horizon, he said "Johnny, my boy, God’s love is as big as all of that." 
"Why father," the boy replied with sparkling eyes, "then we must be right in the middle of it." 
– Earnest Worker
_________
 We are right in the middle of God’s love – and NOTHING can separate us from this undeserved, unlimited love.
____________

When it is said that God loves man this is not a judgment on what man is like, but on what God is like. — Anders Nygren, Agape and Eros, 1953