Tuesday, December 27, 2011

I Have Been Crucified With Christ

Have you ever, thought hard on this verse? I have been crucified with Christ, it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, “who loved me” and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20 ESV)

I thought, “Man, I don’t live my life like that.” I know the biblical truth, that when I accepted Christ as my savior, my sins where crucified and paid for by His shed blood. I know that Christ has accomplished for me that which I could never accomplish for myself. Christ satisfied the wrath of God, making a way for me to have peace with God, yes I get all of that. But what I don’t get is my halfhearted response to Him who has done so much for me. Why don’t I say, “IT IS NO LONGER I WHO LIVE, BUT CHRIST WHO LIVES IN ME.” How can I be willing to give so little to him who gave me so much?

After reading this verse this morning, I looked up the word crucified.

Webster states that crucified means:

· To put to death by nailing or binding the wrists or hands and feet to a cross

· To destroy the power of

So I know realized that, I must die, destroy the power of the things of me, and live for the things of Christ. I now belong to him; my life is to be lived for him. I must give up what control I thought I had and let Christ rule in my life. I must become a bondservant of Christ. One that willing gives his life to the one that owns him. So be it Lord, make me what you would have me be. For my hearts desire is to be able to say these words. “I HAVE BEEN CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST, IT IS NO LONGER I WHO LIVE, BUT CHRIST WHO LIVES IN ME.”

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Have you ever had one of those encounters, which changed your heart, well this one changed my heart and I thank God for it. I was riding the L Train heading to O’Hare airport. As I was sitting there a young man started to yell, so that everyone on the train could hear him. "Excuse me" he yelled, "my sister and I are homeless, we split up this morning so we could both try to collect money so we could afford to stay in a room tonight. We found a room that cost 35 dollars, so we each need to collect $17:50." I was somewhat taken back by this, you see the man was in his early to mid 20’s. He was a good-looking young man even though he had not taken very good care of himself, not the type of person I thought would be doing this. As he was yelling and asking for money, I thought to myself, how did he end up homeless? How can he not be ashamed? I would be humiliated if I have to do that. I also thought, what if he is lying and just getting people to feel sorry for him. What is he going to do with the money, does he really have a sister? All these thoughts where going on in my head. Then I just stopped and I asked God to help me. This was my prayer, "God I don’t know what to do, I’m not sure if this young man is telling the truth, I'm just not sure and I don’t know what to do." As I was praying, suddenly all I could think of was the verse that said, "Whatever you do to the lease of these." Over and over again this verse ran across my mind. My prayer continued, "God I have thirty-seven dollars in cash in my wallet, I’m not sue what I should give." But the verse was all I heard, "Whatever you do to the lease of these." So I called the young man over and I gave him two dollars, I thought to myself, that’s more than most people, would give. The young man took the money and thanked me saying “you are my first dollars.” As he looked me in the eyes my heart broke for him. He continued to yell asking for money, he said "please anything would help." He said, "even if you have a penny, that would help." I noticed the guy sitting next to me reach in to his pocket. He called the young man over and gave him a penny. I could not believe it. Why would he do that? It was almost as if he was trying to hurt the young man, to make him feel less than. I became so angry at the man's actions. I wanted to say, "cant you see that he is already down; you don’t need to rub it in." But the young took the penny and said, with what I thought was complete sincerity, "thank you so much" and he walked away. As he was walking away, my heart wanted to do more for him. So I got up, caught him and gave him the twenty-dollar bill. Tears came too his eyes, I said "God bless you", and he said "thank you so much, God bless you." And thats exactly what God did for me, he blessed me; he gave me the gift of this young man. God on that day gave me eyes to see, and a heart to care. My pray is, that young man will find in Christ, all that comfort he is looking for.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

And They Took Offense at Him

Have you ever said to your self in disbelief, “did that just happen” Recently if you have been following the NBA you may have said it when David Stern’s the NBA commissioner stopped a blockbuster trade between the Los Angeles Lakers, the New Orleans Hornets, and the Houston Rockets. If your a sports fan you just could not understand why, it was a good trade for all the teams and it made good basketball sense. As a fan you just had to say Did That Just Happen! I know that some of you are thinking I don’t care about basketball, so why are you telling me all of this. Well I do have a point. Sometimes we see things, or hear something and we are just amazed at. We can’t understand why someone did what they did, or why a crowd acted as they acted. And in Matthew Chapter 13 we see one of those examples.

In verse 53 the Bible tells us (And when Jesus had finished these parables, he went away from there, and coming to His hometown, he taught them in the synagogue, so that they were astonished and said , “Where did this man get this wisdom and these mighty works.

The crowd was amazed by Jesus, he was in His hometown, you would think that the crowd would be thankful, grateful. That they would want to here more, because of the wisdom and the great works that Jesus was doing. But if you continue to read, that was not the case. In verse 57 the Bible tells us (And they took offense at Him) You have to say, did that just happen. Why would they take offense at Jesus, if he was doing great works and speaking with great wisdom. You see they allowed their reason, to be greater than the truth. They said is he not from here, do we not know his family, how can he speak like this, and then they became jealous. How often we allow jealousy and our pride to blind us to the things of God.

Even though Jesus was right there in front of them, showing them and telling them, their hearts and their minds became bitter towards Him. They allowed pride to replace amazement, and hate to replace wonder. Today is a good day to ask God to remove the pride and hate that cause our hearts to grow cold to the things of God.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Peace with Circumstances

Peace with Circumstances

“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” These are the words that paul writes in Philippians 4:19.

How many times have we read these words and quoted this verse to others when things are tough, and when money is tight. Yet if you are anything like me, it is hard to believe this truth when it is me who is facing the hard time. Today I asked myself, why is it so difficult to trust God for all my needs? Why is it so easy to tell others this truth, but when it’s me, I just cant seem to wrap my heart around these words.

As I look back over my life, and my ministry, I can clearly see how God has supplied all my needs. But in the mist of the circumstance I for some reason take my eyes off of Jesus. I’m like Peter when he was walking on water,(Matthew 14:28-32) You see Peter was fine as long as he kept his eyes on Jesus. But once he started to look at the storm he became afraid. He allowed his Circumstances to overwhelm him, and he started to believe a lie. He failed to trust Jesus, you see Jesus had just told him to come to Him. But the storm caused Peter to lose trust in Jesus. Jesus was still faithful, and He still rescued Peter, but Peter made his situation worse by his lack of faith.

So as I look back over my life I can see how every time, when I thought I would not make it, and I thought that God had failed me, I can now see that He was faithful. But I also see how much worse I made things. How many sleepless nights, how many times I struck out at God and blamed Him. How many times I made things worse by not trusting His word. Yes, I am starting to understand how to fight the good fight, how to trust God in the mist of a storm. It is by believing His promises, to trust that He will make a way when all seems lost. I have come to see that our God is faithful and we just need to keep our eyes on Him. So when you are in the mist of a storm, know that God will supply your every need.

Im not saying that everything will work out how you want it to and sometimes the storms in our lives are due to our own sin. But, sometimes God is allowing a storm so that you will turn back to Him. Know that God is still faithful,even if we are the reason for the storm. God will work it out for our good, even though it may be a hard lesson to learn.

Alway remember that no matter what how big the storm is, when the storm is about your needs. God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory. So in the storm keep your eyes on Jesus.