“TIME TO HARVEST CROPS!”

“No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”  Hebrews 12:11 NIV   Read:   Hebrews 12:4-12   In my weekly drives from San Antonio to Aransas Pass to work on the house being remodeled for the Pastors’ Retreat, I pass through the coastal plains.   With the warm climate, their planting season is very early.  This results in their harvest time being in the middle of the summer.   Maize and feed corn were harvested six weeks ago, while huge cotton bales have been lining the roads for the last few weeks.  As the months go by, harvest time will continue northward over the next month or so.   There are times in each of our lives when we by choice or not harvest what we have sown.  There are times to reflect upon and embrace our work and our efforts during these years our LORD has given us.   Are you prepared to harvest the crops you have planted?  Will your grain bins be overflowing, your cellars stocked well and your barns full of the livestock of your life?  Or, will you harvest the disappointing crops of your errors and sinful ways?   You have a choice.   Take the time to read today’s scripture reading, Hebrew 12: 4-12.   GOD tells us in order to harvest well, we must be disciplined in our lives.  We are to plant and care for our crops so they yield a full harvest.   Unlike growing seasons, we can plant daily.  Your storehouse and barns are...

“A SANDPAPER PERSONALITY!”

“It is the Sovereign Lord who helps me. Who will condemn me? They will all wear out like a garment; the moths will eat them up.”  Isaiah 50:9 NIV Read:   Isaiah 50: 4-9 Do you know someone who just ‘rubs you the wrong way’?   Even at their best, their abrasive words and actions overwhelm any other quality they may have.  You may identify with them as having a ‘sandpaper personality’.  They are ready to disagree with everyone it seems.   Nothing seems to please them.  ‘Difficulty’ should be their middle name.   It seems some will criticize the best of situations and will never seem satisfied with even the kindness action.   Understand, people with such a sandpaper personality usually have a problem with themselves and sometimes take out their frustrations and false ideals upon others. Don’t be a sandpaper person.   Be careful when you feel like criticizing others.   A good rule is:  ‘chastise in private only and only when necessary and praise in public as often as you can.’ So, you don’t develop that sandpaper personality, heed JESUS’ words.   In Matthew 7, verses 1 and 2 we read:  “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.   For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”   Today’s prayer:  “JESUS MY LORD, Thank YOU for forgiving me at times I have had a sandpaper personality.   Help me to understand the abrasiveness of others and lead them to YOUR loving forgiveness.  Amen.”...

“DON’T LIVE THERE!”

“But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.”  2Peter 1:9 NIV Read: 2Peter 1:5-10 I once read;  “Leave tomorrow behind, you don’t live there anymore.”   We all too often live in the past, full of regrets.   Or maybe, you are looking back at the doubts and insecurities of past errors. Where are you living?   If you are living in the past, ask yourself why.   What does the past offer that the future doesn’t?  Nothing.  Absolutely nothing. Simon Peter wrote GOD’S perfect Word in today’s scripture reading and completes GOD’S Blessings with a comforting instruction of our future in verses 10 and 11. “Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election.  For if you do these things, you will never stumble, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our LORD and SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST.”   Now, that’s where to live! This reminds us of the future we all can have.  It is not based on yesterday.   You can’t go back to all the yesterdays of your life.  But, you can follow the scriptural words of Peter and do each and every thing GOD tells us in today’s reading. Goodness, knowledge, self control, perseverance, godliness, mutual affection and love are all instructions for today and the future.   These are of not instructions of the past you cannot change.   They are the instructions of the future you can live in. Today’s prayer: “JESUS MY LORD, Thank YOU for hearing my prayer.   Help me today to shed...

“IT MAKES YOU HUNGRY!”

“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”   John 6:35 NIV Read:   John 6: 32-40 Ad placement.   Did you ever notice, commercials for food and restaurants are timed when you are most likely to respond?    Even in the grocery stores, samples are handed out to stimulate your appetite.   It has been proven, we buy more when we are hungry.  Grocery stores and restaurants do all possible to create that hunger.   The five thousand were hungry and JESUS fed them with only five loaves of bread and two fish.   The people responded.   The wanted to follow JESUS for all HE could supply materially. Few found salvation and many turned on HIM in short time.   They failed to see the real food, the bread of life HE offered. GOD’S Word stimulates your hunger for HIS Word.     Once you taste it, you will want more.   If you are not in a scheduled Bible study, I urge you to join one today.   The more of GOD’S Word you study, the more you will want to study.  GOD’S Word will feed you spiritually.  When you are fed spiritually, you will find the food you need to satisfy you both emotionally and physically.   When you read your Bible regularly, you will find yourself hungry for more.   The more you know, the more you will want to know about our CREATOR, JESUS AND THE HOLY SPIRIT. Today’s prayer:  LORD GOD, Thank YOU for giving me YOUR Word.   Help me...

“IS TRUTH DEAD?”

“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.”  1John 1:8 NIV Read:  1John 1:5-10 “IS TRUTH DEAD?” was the entire cover of Time magazine this past April.   The story was about the truth and lack of truth in the politics of our great nation.   Still, the subject is worth exploring as the lack of truth reflects the mood of our nation and society all too much.     Does everyone you know always tell the truth?  Always?   How about you?   Do you always tell the truth?  Always?  I wonder if everyone I have ever met always tells the truth.   It would be great if everyone did.  Yet, it seems even the best of us ‘stretch’ the truth or leave part of it out when we speak. The truth is the only truth in this world we are spending time is the Holy Scripture of GOD.   Every word of every verse of every book is the only Truth you can depend.  As you are caught up in the evils of this world, take a break and enjoy GOD.  Enjoy all of HIS truths knowing HE will lead you to the truth in your life.   Jeremiah wrote of Judah in chapter 7, verse 28: “Therefore say to them, ‘This is the nation that has not obeyed the Lord its God or responded to correction. Truth has perished; it has vanished from their lips.”    Are we a nation like Judah?   It is not just about politics.  Are you being truthful to all you know and meet?   Isn’t it time we...

“DO YOU POSSESS GALLANTRY?”

“If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.”  1Peter 4:11 NIV   Read:  1Peter 4:1-11   Do you possess gallantry?   You can have all you want or need and it’s free.  No, you don’t need a white horse with a silver inlaid saddle. The full question is:  “Do you have a willingness to confront agony, pain and fear?   Can you muster bravery to act in the face of anxiety?   Do you have the strength to face any obstacle?  Do you possess gallantry to face frightful situations?” You can be sure you have all the willingness, bravery, strength and gallantry you will ever need.   All it takes is faith in our RISEN LORD.   If you will trust JESUS with all your heart and soul, HE will provide all the willingness, bravery, strength and gallantry you need for your entire lifetime. The apostle Paul wrote the book of Philippians to praise, lift up and teach those of the church at Philippi.   One of the most quoted verses in your Bible is Philippians 4:13. “I can do all this through HIM who gives me strength.”   Your Bible translation may read; “I can do all things through CHRIST who strengthens me.” Well worth repeating:  Willingness, bravery, strength and gallantry are all gifts from JESUS.   Take all you need and use all you take. Today’s prayer:  “LORD JESUS,...