August 31, 2017

Live A Balanced Life

‘Come with Me… to a quiet place and get some rest.’ Mark 6:31 NIV The Bible says, ‘The length of our days is seventy years—or eighty.’ (Psalm 90:10 NIV) If you’re blessed to live that long you’ll typically spend an average of twenty-four years sleeping, twenty years working, ten years in church and on holiday (mostly holiday), seven years eating, six years traveling, four years dealing with sickness, and two years getting dressed. Kierkegaard said: ‘The press of busyness is like a charm… seeking to lay hold of ever-younger victims so that [we] are scarcely allowed time for God to develop […]
August 30, 2017

You Can Start Again

‘A bruised reed He will not break, and a smoldering wick He will not snuff out.’ Matthew 12:20 NIV Aren’t you glad that God is a mender and not a discarder? With Him, broken lives don’t have to be the end of the story. He’s often been called the God of the ‘second chance’. How short-sighted is that? If we got only two chances we’d all be miserably, hopelessly lost. But instead He’s the God of the ‘seventy times seven’! (see Matthew 18:22). So He’s the God of unlimited grace. As long as you humbly acknowledge your failure and desire to start […]
August 29, 2017

Get Rid of the Mental Baggage!

‘Love… ties everything completely together.’ Colossians 3:14 CEV If you’re the kind of person who harbors grudges and holds on to past mistakes, even your own, you know what it feels like to be weighed down by mental baggage. It’s hard for a relationship to survive when neither party has processed what happened in the past. Like blame, mental baggage keeps you stuck. For example, if someone in a past relationship has hurt you and you’ve never let go of it, every time your mate does something similar it’s likely you’ll react with unwarranted fervor, as if he or she was […]
August 28, 2017

Don’t Let Fear Stop You

‘Kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you.’ 2 Timothy 1:6 NAS Don’t let fear make you hide your talents and abilities. God expects us to make the most of all He has given us. He wants our hearts to burn brightly for Him; He wants us to invest in our own growth and to learn how to be more effective for Him. Paul wrote to the people of Philippi, ‘Keep on growing in knowledge and understanding.’ (Philippians 1:9 NLT) He wrote to Timothy, ‘Be sure to use the abilities God has given you…Put [them] to work.’ (1 Timothy 4:14–15 TLB) […]
August 27, 2017

You’re Called to a ‘Special Work’

‘Each part… helps the other parts grow.’ Ephesians 4:16 NLT Paul writes: ‘As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body [church] is healthy and growing and full of love.’ Let’s look at two different kinds of growth—symbiotic growth and parasitic growth. Symbiotic growth is a give-and-take relationship in which both sides benefit. Parasitic growth is when one side feeds off another but gives nothing back. So when you come out of church and say, ‘I didn’t get anything out of that service,’ you may be practicing parasitic growth. Parasitic growth […]
August 26, 2017

When Jesus Prayed (5)

‘He… prayed…“Not My will, but Yours be done.”’ Luke 22:41–42 NIV Jesus prayed before He faced the greatest crisis in His life. The Bible says: ‘Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and His disciples followed him. On reaching the place… He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if You are willing, take this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” An angel from Heaven appeared… and strengthened Him.’ (Luke 22:39–43 NIV) Jesus didn’t wait until the hour of His greatest crisis before He prayed. For three and […]
August 25, 2017

When Jesus Prayed (4)

‘Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you.’ Luke 22:31–32 NIV Jesus prayed when He was concerned about the people He loved. He told Peter: ‘Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you… that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.’ And Peter did turn back. The disciple who denied his Lord in a moment of weakness eventually stood before a crowd of thousands and preached the Gospel to them, and three thousand were won to Christ. Jesus not only taught His […]
August 24, 2017

When Jesus Prayed (3)

‘He departed to the mountain to pray.’ Mark 6:46 NKJV Let’s look at another point at which Jesus prayed: when the pressures and expectations of others threatened to derail God’s plan for His life. The Bible says: ‘While it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed. Simon and his companions went to look for Him, and when they found Him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for You!” Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else—to the nearby villages—so that I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” […]