Let It Preach Itself

People can preach the Gospel better than I.

But no one can preach a better Gospel.

The Gospel itself is "the power of God unto salvation."

So says Romans 1:16.

So I do not care how well you preach the Gospel.

So much as knowing that it is well with you to preach it.

Other than that,  let the Gospel preach itself.

You Are Not Alone

Another night in the hospital bed.

It's becoming home away from home.

My pops and my wife would stop in and sit down.

And there were many hours I was by myself.

I listened to chatter outside my door.

I opened my Bible and read.

I looked out the window and I prayed.

I was at perfect peace.

For I was by myself.  But I was not alone.

And neither are you.

You may feel you have been abandoned.

Or that no one is around when you need them most.

But you...you are not alone.

"At my first defense, no one stood by me.  All had forsaken me.

But the Lord stood by me."  Paul,  2 Timothy 4:18.

Thee Only

When David slept with Bathsheba, then murdered her husband...

He was called out by the prophet Nathan.

David's response was singular. 

"I have sinned against the Lord," David said.

What about Uriah, David? Or the baby that died? Not to mention, Bathsheeba?

That is what we might ask him.

David reiterates his confession again.  This time in Psalm 51.

"Against Thee and Thee only have I sinned, O Lord."

Whether in the moment of confession or the Psalm of reflection...

David spoke of sinning against the Lord.

When it comes to our actions, we can justify them if we want to.

The reason we did this or that action is because this person did the other.

And even though the Bible may tell us it was a sin....

We can feel we had the right to the course of action we took.

Until we get real.  We become honest.  And we remember...

Our Father did nothing to deserve the action we took.

Maybe David could have justified his action to one degree or another.

But when the Lord called him out,  David said he sinned only against the Lord.

That is a true "Fear of the Lord."

When it all comes down to it,  the fact of the matter is that we have sinned against Him.

And He will forgive us when we confess that sin to Him.

 

Humble Yourself

Solomon's son wanted to outdo his pops.

Rehoboam declared, "My dad chastened you with whips.  But I will use scorpions!"

And he lost half his kingdom.

It wasn't the end of the world for David's grandson, though.

He got older.  Wiser.  Nicer.

The Scriptures say,  "When Rehoboam humbled himself, the wrath of God turned from him,

so as not to destroy him completely and things also went well in Judah."

Bad start.  Nice recovery. 

Today things may not be looking so great for you right now.

Perhaps you're having to eat your words or shake your head.

Humble yourself.  Before our Lord.  And He will lift you up.

Ask Rehoboam.

Happy Father's Day

It's Father's Day this Sunday.

I am grateful that my father is also my daughters' hero.

They think he is funny.  And thoughtful.  And kind.

When he pops in during their friend conventions at our house, 

he is the center of their entertainment.

And he has yet to miss his granddaughter's softball game or a cheerleading event.

My four daughters may not know this...

What I appreciate the most about their Papa John is that he prays for them every single day.

This Father's Day,  Dads...

 Do the very best thing that is possible to do for your kids or grandkids...

Place them into the hands of our Father through your prayers.

And know that as you do,  the Father in Heaven says about you...

"This is my son in whom I am well pleased."

For you are in Christ.  And therefore,  you are pleasing to the Father.

 

This One Thing

There is a certain workout tee-shirt that states:

"Everything Hurts.  And I'm Dying."

Well,  there are times I do not have to be in a gym to say that.

Sometimes I could wear that shirt in my house.  Or my office.  Or my bed.

Yet....

When my body hurts.

And I feel I can hardly go on.

Or everything seems to be going down.

Even if nothing else...

Today.  On this day...

I can think and I can say....

"This one thing I know and nothing else:  Jesus Christ and Him crucified."  2 Cor. 2:2

 

Take No Thought...

I choose to believe that I cannot fall away from Jesus tomorrow.

There are some who disagree with that perspective.

They believe one is able to walk away from their salvation.

They have every right to be wrong on that particular subject.

But whether one believes that they can or cannot fall away from Jesus tomorrow....

The better way of thinking than either of those two scenarios...

Is to not think about tomorrow at all.

Because today has enough trials and dilemmas of it's own.

Jesus is very wise.

Good words, Lord!

I won't ponder if I might fall away from Him tomorrow.

And I know He has me today.

We Will Not Die

Well,  I had an appointment with my brain surgeon a couple of days ago.

He still shakes his head.  He had never seen anything like it. 

He can't believe that I survived.  I was a few hours from death.

But I'm alive.

Better yet,  Jesus is alive.

We will never die.

The New Testament says that we simply "sleep."

I love that statement.

Taking a nap is always a nice thing.

You lay down and then get back up again. 

We will lay down.  But we will get back up again.