April 30, 2016

Take Another Look (2)

‘Do you look at things according to the outward appearance?’ 2 Corinthians 10:7 NKJV Paul makes it clear that there are qualities we haven’t yet discovered or discerned in some of the people around us. Most of our conclusions are based on limited and often flawed information. God saw qualities in David his own family didn’t recognise. To them he was just a shepherd boy. In fact, when he showed up at the battlefront and offered to fight Goliath, his oldest brother, Eliab, told him to go home and mind his own business. Yet within hours David had killed Goliath and […]
April 29, 2016

Take Another Look (1)

‘Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh.’ 2 Corinthians 5:16NKJV What did Paul mean when he wrote, ‘we regard no one according to the flesh’? Simply this: instead of focusing on another believer’s faults and failings, try to see them as a regenerated spirit living in an unregenerated body. The fact is they’re ‘made right with God through Christ’ (2 Corinthians 5:21 NLT), and as such they have the potential to accomplish great things. No question, when it comes to forming relationships you must be discerning. The wrong people can hurt you and the right people […]
April 28, 2016

Get Involved!

‘Others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire.’ Jude 1:23 NKJV When someone you love gets into a situation that can hurt them—get involved! The Bible says, ‘On some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire.’ (Jude 1:22–23 NKJV) The Greek word for ‘save’ means ‘to take immediate, decisive, and continuous action’. Here the word ‘fear’ means ‘a strong dose of respect for something that’s life-threatening, dangerous, or alarming’. And the phrase ‘pulling them out of the fire’ means you don’t have a moment to waste. The house is burning […]
April 27, 2016

‘Saved Through Faith’

‘You have been saved through faith.’ Ephesians 2:8 NKJV The Bible says, ‘By grace you have been saved through faith.’ Faith in Christ alone gives us the assurance of Heaven. Poet Henry van Dyke put it like this: ‘I am standing upon the seashore. A ship… spreads her white sails to the morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength. I stand and watch until… she hangs like a speck of white cloud where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other. Then someone at my side says, “She’s gone!” “Gone […]
April 26, 2016

The Futility of Fame and Fortune

‘Where do I put my hope? … in You.’ Psalm 39:7 NLT Society’s fascination with Hollywood and celebrities has gone a little crazy. Millions idolise those who have achieved fame and fortune, yet stardom does not provide the satisfaction it advertises. Marilyn Monroe could have told us that. So could Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson. Consider the adoration accorded to Muhammed Ali in his prime. He was known as ‘the prize fighter who couldn’t be beaten’. His picture appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated more than any other athlete in history. Wherever he went the cameras followed. But wealth and […]
April 25, 2016

Dealing with a Loved One’s Suicide

‘A bruised reed He will not break, and a smouldering wick He will not snuff out.’ Matthew 12:20 NIV When a loved one dies from sickness, accident, violence or advanced age, our grief, according to counsellors, is labelled ‘uncomplicated’ or ‘simple’. However, when they die by suicide our recovery process becomes ‘complicated’, fraught with often unanswerable questions. We experience guilt, even anger. ‘Was I not there for them? Should I have done more? Could I have helped prevent it? How could they do this to us? They were being purely selfish. They thought about nobody but themselves!’ These feelings will take […]
April 24, 2016

Seek Reconciliation (2)

‘First… be reconciled… then… offer your gift.’ Matthew 5:24 NIV Are you at odds with someone? Is it constantly on your heart, robbing you of peace and even affecting your job performance? Here’s what Jesus said you’re supposed to do: ‘If you are offering your gift at the altar and… remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there… First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.’ (Matthew 5:23–24 NIV) You say, ‘I’m waiting for him to come to me.’ What if he doesn’t? Today Jesus is telling you, ‘Go and be […]
April 23, 2016

Seek Reconciliation (1)

‘If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offence.’ Matthew 18:15 NLT After explaining the commandment that says, ‘Honour thy father and thy mother’ (Exodus 20:12 KJV), a Sunday school teacher asked her class of six-year-olds, ‘Can you think of a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?’ Without missing a beat, a little boy answered, ‘Thou shalt not kill.’ (Exodus 20:13) Seriously, why did Jesus make such a big deal out of being reconciled to our brothers and sisters in the faith instead of letting disputes between us fester? After all, He […]