What does it mean to abide in Christ…

Text: You are holding a cup of coffee when someone comes along and
bumps into you or shakes your arm, making you spill your coffee

Why did you spill the coffee?

“Well, because someone bumped into me, of course!”

Wrong answer – you spilled your coffee because there was coffee in your cup. Had there been tea in the cup, you would have spilled tea.

“Whatever is inside the cup is what will spill out.”

Therefore, when life comes along and shakes you (which WILL happen), whatever is inside you will come out.

It’s easy to fake it, until you get rattled.

“So, we ask ourselves…., “What’s inside my cup?”

When life gets tough, what spills over?

Joy, gratefulness, peace, and humility?

Or, anger, bitterness, harsh words, and reactions.
You choose!

Today, let’s work towards filling our cups with gratitude, forgiveness, joy, words of affirmation, kindness, gentleness, and love for others!

Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks…

Jesus said, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.”

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.

If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.” (John 15:4-6)

I want to thank Val for sharing this story, this morning, about the spilt coffee…

It’s so right on, and so I’m going to expand upon it a little, because this is something we ALL struggle with.

Being a Christian requires, as an act of our will (by faith), that we immerse ourselves in Christ 24/7.

Matthew 12:34
Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

Proverbs 4:23
Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.

Galatians 5:16-25

Walking in the Spirit
16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: [a]adultery, [b]fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, [c]murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 [d]gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

This is why we have to abide in Christ and maintain that connection 24/7; a branch cannot bear fruit unless it is attached to the Vine.

Being a Christian is not a spectator sport, and the church is not where we go to be entertained, rather it’s our team meeting.

The pastor should be like the coach of a football team and the church is where we go to learn how to play the game, to take the Gospel out into the highways and byways of this world, starting in our local communities.

The church is also like a hospital where people go when they recognize that they need help. No hospital will ever tell you get well and then come see us because that’s what they’re there for, to help you get well.

1 John 2:6
Berean Literal Translation
The one claiming to abide in Him (Jesus) ought also walk just as in the same way that He walked.

This is why we walk by faith because none of us can do this perfectly and fortunately for us, because of Jesus’ propitious sacrifice on calvary’s Cross, He already has won this race for us, as we are told in Ephesians 2:8-9, “…that we are saved by grace through faith and that not of ourselves it’s the gift of God.”

Come join the Adventure!


Waiting on God…

Never quit…

The moment you are about to quit is generally the moment just before your miracle happens… this is why we NEVER QUIT!

ISAIAH 40:22-31

The Message Bible
22 God sits high above the round circle of earth.
The people look like mere ants.
He stretches out the skies like a canvas—
yes, like a tent canvas to live under.

23 He ignores what all the princes say and do.
The rulers of the earth count for nothing.
24 Princes and rulers don’t amount to much.
Like seeds barely rooted, just sprouted,
They shrivel when God blows on them.

Like flecks of chaff, they’re gone with the wind.

25 “So—who is like me?
Who holds a candle to me?” says The Holy.

26 Look at the night skies:
Who do you think made all this?
Who marches this army of stars out each night,
counts them off, calls each by name
—so magnificent! so powerful!—
and never overlooks a single one?

27 Why would you ever complain, O Jacob,
or, whine, Israel, saying,
“God has lost track of me.
He doesn’t care what happens to me”?

28 Don’t you know anything? Haven’t you been listening?
God doesn’t come and go. God lasts.
He’s Creator of all you can see or imagine.

He doesn’t get tired out, doesn’t pause to catch his breath.
And he knows everything, inside and out.

29 He energizes those who get tired,
gives fresh strength to dropouts.

30 For even young people tire and drop out,
young folk in their prime stumble and fall.

31 But those who wait upon God get fresh strength.
They spread their wings and soar like eagles,
They run and don’t get tired,
they walk and don’t lag behind.

The instructions for us to wait upon the Lord and never to quit has to first be predicated upon the will of God.

God NEVER tells us to ask Him for something He doesn’t want us to have; and then when we ask we MUST ask in expectant faith!
1 John 5:14-15

Confidence and Compassion in Prayer
14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask ANYTHING according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, WHATEVER we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

In Mark’s Gospel, after coming down off the Mt. of Transfiguration, Jesus finds Himself confronted with a desperate 911 situation, where a father with an demon oppressed Epileptic son is desperate to gain healing and deliverance for his son.

Coming down off the Mt. of Transfiguration, Jesus was confronted with a deparate situation:

Mark 9:14-26
A Boy Is Healed

14 And when He came to the disciples, He saw a great multitude around them, and scribes disputing with them. 15 Immediately, when they saw Him, all the people were greatly amazed, and running to Him, greeted Him. 16 And He asked the scribes, “What are you discussing with them?”

17 Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. 18 And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not.”

19 He answered him and said, “O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him to Me.” 20 Then they brought him to Him. And when he saw Him, immediately the spirit convulsed him, and he fell on the ground and wallowed, foaming at the mouth.

21 So He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?”

And he said, “From childhood. 22 And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

23 Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”

24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”

25 When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!”

26 Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead.” 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.

God clearly says in the Bible (read also Isaiah 55:8-10) in verse 11, “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”

In another place, God tells us that He has counted His Word above all His Name (see Psalm 138:2), and in the New Testament we are told that the Just shall live by faith (Note: that the Just would be us — of all who have been justified through the propitious sacrifice and shed Blood of Jesus, on Calvary’s cross).

Dependent on God’s Presence

By Oswald Chambers

Those who wait on the Lord…shall walk and not faint. —Isaiah 40:31

There is no thrill for us in walking, yet it is the test for all of our steady and enduring qualities. To “walk and not faint” is the highest stretch possible as a measure of strength.

The word walk is used in the Bible to express the character of a person— “…John…looking at Jesus as He walked…said, ‘Behold the Lamb of God!’ ” (John 1:35-36).

There is nothing abstract or obscure in the Bible; everything is vivid and real. God does not say, “Be spiritual,” but He says, “Walk before Me…” (Genesis 17:1).
When we are in an unhealthy condition either physically or emotionally, we always look for thrills in life.In our physical life this leads to our efforts to counterfeit the work of the Holy Spirit; in our emotional life it leads to obsessions and to the destruction of our morality; and in our spiritual life, if we insist on pursuing only thrills, on mounting up “with wings like eagles” (Isaiah 40:31), it will result in the destruction of our spirituality.
Having the reality of God’s presence is not dependent on our being in a particular circumstance or place, but is only dependent on our determination to keep the Lord before us continually.Our problems arise when we refuse to place our trust in the reality of His presence. The experience the psalmist speaks of— “We will not fear, even though…” (Psalm 46:2)— will be ours once we are grounded on the truth of the reality of God’s presence, not just a simple awareness of it, but an understanding of the reality of it.

Then we will exclaim, “He has been here all the time!” At critical moments in our lives it is necessary to ask God for guidance, but it should be unnecessary to be constantly saying, “Oh, Lord, direct me in this, and in that.”

Of course He will, and in fact, He is doing it already! If our everyday decisions are not according to His will, He will press through them, bringing restraint to our spirit. Then we must be quiet and wait for the direction of His presence.

Come join the Adventure!


The Surrendered Life… what does it mean to be a Christian?

Let Go and Let God into Your Life

Jesus’ invitation is:

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

(Matthew 11:28-30)

This Journey with God, who is the Author and Creator of each of our lives, begins when we are honest and humble enough with ourselves to recognize that in every area that we are seeking in the natural to find meaning, fulfillment and purpose in our life they all have come up woefully short and empty.

I think we all intuitively know that their has to be more to our life than what most of us have experienced thus far and yet nothing seems to satisfy.

Why not consider for a moment that, just maybe, the One who gave you your life might know best what your purpose is and how best to find fulfillment and abundance?

This is not rocket science and God did not make the Gospel message hard for us to understand, in fact one day Jesus took a little child and set him on His lap and then said to His disciples,
“Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like this little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:3)

The truth is we each have been created to have this vertical relationship and 24/7 communion with God, and without this connection in our life we ALL are like fish out of water, flopping around on the shores of life, looking for our way back home!

My Utmost for His Highest

The Surrendered Life
I have been crucified with Christ…

To become one with Jesus Christ, a person must be willing not only to give up sin (which is characterized by our own self will and pride that does not take into account God’s will and purpose for our life – see Isaiah 53:6), but also he must learn to surrender his whole way of looking at things.

Being born again by the Spirit of God means that we must first be willing to let go before we can grasp something else. The first thing we must surrender is all of our pretense or deceit.

What our Lord wants us to present to Him is not our goodness, honesty, or our efforts to do better, but real solid sin.

Actually, that is all He can take from us. And what He gives us in exchange for our sin is real solid righteousness. But we must surrender all pretense that we are anything, and give up all our claims of even being worthy of God’s consideration.

Once we have done that, the Spirit of God will show us what we need to surrender next.

Along each step of this process, we will have to give up our claims to our rights to ourselves.

Are we willing to surrender our grasp on all that we possess, our desires, and everything else in our lives? Are we ready to be identified with the death of Jesus Christ?

We will suffer a sharp painful disillusionment before we fully surrender.

When people really see themselves as the Lord sees them, it is not the terribly offensive sins of the flesh that shock them, but the awful nature of the pride of their own hearts opposing Jesus Christ. When they see themselves in the light of the Lord, the shame, horror, and desperate conviction hit home for them.

If you are faced with the question of whether or not to surrender, make a determination to go on through the crisis, surrendering all that you have and all that you are to Him. And God will then equip you to do all that He requires of you.

Come join the Adventure!


Lord I give you my heart…

God is more than enough and He will make a way through whatever storm you’re going through…

Isaiah 55:1-7

God’s invitation to have an abundant life
1 “Come, all you who are thirsty,
come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
come, buy and eat!

Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without cost.

2 Why spend money on what is not bread,
and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
and you will delight in the richest of fare.

3 Give ear and come to me;
listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
my faithful love promised to David.

4 See, I have made him a witness to the peoples,
a ruler and commander of the peoples.
5 Surely you will summon nations you know not,
and nations you do not know will come running to you,
because of the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel,
for he has endowed you with splendor.”

6 Seek the Lord while he may be found;
call on him while he is near.
7 Let the wicked forsake their ways
and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them,
and to our God, for he will freely pardon.

Without this vertical connection with Jesus (Heb: Yeshua – our Saviour and Creator, aka Emmanuel – God with us), we ALL are like fish out of water, flopping around on the shores of life, looking for our way back home.

Come join the Adventure!


The reason why we pray…

This is the reason why we pray…

“Call unto me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you know not.” (Jeremiah 33:3)

God Calling

By Two Listeners

(This devotion was written by two sisters, who lived through the London Blitzgreg – who chose to remain annonomous)
Perfect Work

Spend more time alone with Me.

A strength and a Joy come from such times that will add much to your friendship, and much to your work.
Times of prayer are times of growth. Cut those times short and many well-filled hours of work may be profitless.

Heaven’s values are so different from the values of earth.

Remember that from the point of view of the Great Worker, one poor tool, working all the time, but doing bad work, is of small value compared with the sharp, keen, perfect instrument, used only a short time, but which turns out perfect work.

Does the road wind
uphill all the way?
Yes, to the very end,
Will the journey take
the whole long day?
From morn to night, my friend.
— C. G. Rossetti

“And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” Mark 1:35

It’s through prayer that God is able to sharpen us, as His tool, His instrument suitable for His service, because by our praying and communicating with Him, continually — day by day — through the Holy Spirit (as per Romans 8:26), we are then praying in the perfect will of God. This allows the Holy Spirit, through our obedience and faith, to rewrite the corrupt programming we have received from the world, and instill in us the Mind of God.

Come join the Adventure!


The Woman at the well…

Here Jesus, God incarnate – the Creator of the universe and all that’s in it (see Col 1:17), comes to a dispised Samaritan woman thirsty and asking her for a drink…

John 4:7-11

7 A woman, a Samaritan, came to draw water. Jesus said, “Would you give me a drink of water?” 8 (His disciples had gone to the village to buy food for lunch.)

9 The Samaritan woman, taken aback, asked, “How come you, a Jew, are asking me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?” (Jews in those days wouldn’t be caught dead talking to Samaritans.)

10 Jesus answered, “If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water.”

11 The woman said, “Sir, you don’t even have a bucket to draw with, and this well is deep. So how are you going to get this ‘living water’?

[Backstory: For Jews in Israel, Samaria is a place to be avoided. Before Solomon’s death 1,000 years earlier, the regions of Samaria and Judea were part of a united Israel. After the rebellion that divided the kingdom, Samaria became a hotbed of idol worship. The northern kings made alliances that corrupted the people by introducing foreign customs and strange gods. They even had the nerve to build a temple to the True God on Mt. Gerizim to rival the one in Jerusalem. By the time the twelve are traveling with Jesus, it has long been evident that the Samaritans have lost their way. By marrying outsiders, they have polluted the land. Israel’s Jews consider them to be half-breeds—mongrels—and the Jews know to watch out for them or else be bitten by temptation.]

Did you know that God is thirsty for you?

My Utmost for His Highest

The Impoverished Ministry of Jesus

By Oswald Chambers

Where then do You get that living water? —John 4:11

“The well is deep” — and even a great deal deeper than the Samaritan woman knew! (John 4:11).Think of the depths of human nature and human life; think of the depth of the “wells” in you.

Have you been limiting, or impoverishing, the ministry of Jesus to the point that He is unable to work in your life?

Suppose that you have a deep “well” of hurt and trouble inside your heart, and Jesus comes and says to you, “Let not your heart be troubled…” (John 14:1).

Would your response be to shrug your shoulders and say, “But, Lord, the well is too deep, and even You can’t draw up quietness and comfort out of it.”

Actually, that is correct. Jesus doesn’t bring anything up from the wells of human nature— He brings them down from above.

We limit the Holy One of Israel by remembering only what we have allowed Him to do for us in the past, and also by saying, “Of course, I cannot expect God to do this particular thing.”

The thing that approaches the very limits of His power is the very thing we as disciples of Jesus ought to believe He will do.

We impoverish and weaken His ministry in us the moment we forget He is almighty. The impoverishment is in us, not in Him.

We will come to Jesus for Him to be our comforter or our sympathizer, but we refrain from approaching Him as our Almighty God.
The reason some of us are such poor examples of Christianity is that we have failed to recognize that Christ is almighty.We have Christian attributes and experiences, but there is no abandonment or surrender to Jesus Christ.

When we get into difficult circumstances, we impoverish His ministry by saying, “Of course, He can’t do anything about this.” We struggle to reach the bottom of our own well, trying to get water for ourselves.

Beware of sitting back, and saying, “It can’t be done.” You will know it can be done if you will look to Jesus. The well of your incompleteness runs deep, but make the effort to look away from yourself and to look toward Him.
Think of the depths of human nature and human life; think of the depth of the “wells” in you.

Have you been limiting, or impoverishing, the ministry of Jesus to the point that He is unable to work in your life?

Suppose that you have a deep “well” of hurt and trouble inside your heart, and Jesus comes and says to you, “Let not your heart be troubled…” (John 14:1).

Would your response be to shrug your shoulders and say, “But, Lord, the well is too deep, and even You can’t draw up quietness and comfort out of it.”

Actually, that is correct. Jesus doesn’t bring anything up from the wells of human nature— He brings them down from above.


Come join the Adventure!


God owns it ALL…

God is the Author and Creator of EVERYTHING that exists in heaven and earth…

Hebrews 1:1-4

God’s Supreme Revelation
1 God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 2 has in these last days spoken to us by His Son (Jesus}, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; 3 who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4 having become so much better than the angels, as He has by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.

Colossians 1:15-18

15 He (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. 18 And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

Think for a moment that the same God, who has created everything and owns everything in heaven and earth, has also created each one of us. He alone is the One who has authored each one of our lives, and has given to each of us the free will to choose how we will spend our lives, whether to spend it on Him or on ourselves?

It has always been God’s intention that we should spend our lives on Him, dedicated to His service, following Jesus’ example (who is our elder Brother, also called in Scripture the “Last Adam”); but God in His love and wisdom does not demand this of any man, but leaves it entirely to us how we should spend our lives. But if we want to know what God’s original design and plan was for Adam (before the fall), we have but to look to Jesus.

1 John 2:6
The one claiming to abide in Him (Jesus) ought also walk just as in the same way that He walked.

Jesus tells us in Scripture that He only does what He sees the Father do and He only speaks what He hears the Father speak; and that as the Father has called Him, likewise He is calling us!

Jesus also said that He came that we may have life and experience it more abundantly. Aren’t we ALL looking for that ultimate meaning and purpose for our live; aren’t we ALL instinctively looking for an Abundant Life?

What better place is there for us to go, in order to find out what that purpose is, than to go to the One who created us?

Psalm 139:13-16
13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
and knit me together in my mother’s womb.14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.

15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.

16 You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed.

God owns it ALL anyway and so why are so many people acting like the little girl below?

The Winning Way

The Bible says more about money that it does about heaven or hell combined, and contains amazingly relevant principles regarding money management, stewardship, and budgeting. But the bottom line is this: every bit of what the Christian has belongs to God. He owns everything.

This principle was vividly illustrated to me in McDonald’s of all places. I had gone to the home of the golden arches for lunch with my granddaughter, LeeBeth. We stood at the counter and placed our orders. She, with the confidence of youth and healthy arteries, ordered a “Happy Meal,” including a hamburger, french fries and a drink. I, of the older and more “heart smart” generation, ordered a “McLean,” with no fries. I paid for both of us, and we took our lunches to a nearby table and sat down. About halfway through our meal, I began to think how good one of LeeBeth’s french fries would taste. As I reached across the table, she put her hand in front of mine and said with a stern warning, “No, Goosey, those are mine.”

Now I bought every one of those french fries, and if I had wanted to, I could have marched back up to the counter and bought every french fry in the house. As I thought about her response, I began to understand how our childlike possessiveness of the things He provides must appear to God. He owns everything…and it is all at His disposal. He gives it to us to “do business with” for an undetermined time. May we be found faithful with what is His.
Memory Verse

…all this abundance that we have provided to build Thee a house for Thy Holy Name, it is from Thy hand, and all is Thine.

Come join the Adventure!


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