Second Sunday of Advent

Peace.pngWe began Advent last Sunday by lighting the first candle, the candle of Hope. We light it again today to remind us that Christ is coming to fulfill God’s promises. Today we light the second candle of Peace. The prophet Isaiah said, “Comfort, comfort my people” to a nation anxious about invasion and exile, as he foretold the coming of the Prince of Peace. Our world is still filled with violence and abuse, where families are torn apart by war and children used as soldiers. Isaiah’s words continue to speak to us that Jesus will bring us to an everlasting peace. Mary and Joseph found no room in the inn to give birth to Jesus, but we can heed John the Baptist’s command to make room in our hearts. Wherever there is war or mistrust between people, families, or our own hearts, God is present and leading us to imagine new ways of living in peace. Christ is our only hope, and our peace is found through him. We light this candle to remind us of Jesus’ life-giving peace to all who trust him. We light it in honor of those who live the Gospel truth that war does not make one great. It is the peace workers who risk much so that others may live without fear.

Prayer: We’re in trouble, Holy God. So many in the world do not know peace in their countries or in their hearts. We use weapons of steel and barbed words to wound one another. We seek balm for our restless hearts in the things that only make is more wounded. Open our hearts to Jesus so we may have the peace of his holy presence and live it in our unpeaceful world. Save us from outside violence and inner turmoil. We need you. Come, peaceful God, come.                            Amen

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

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God Has Created This World For All!

Isaiah 45.pngFor this is what the Lord says-he who created the heavens, his is God, he who fashioned and made the earth, he founded it, he did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited- he says: “I am the Lord, and there is no other. I have not spoken in secret, from somewhere in a land of darkness; I have not said to Jacob’s descendants, Seek me in vain, I, the Lord, speak the truth; I declare what is right.                 Isaiah 45:18-19

As I read these words from the prophet Isaiah I think of the ten commandments that God gave to Moses years before hand. He wrote these commandments with his finger so that once all reads them we will engrave them in our hearts forever. Read Exodus 20:1-3 and God spoke all these words. “I am the Lord, your God, who brought you out of Egypt, and out of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me. In other words it is wrong for us to made anyone a God in our eyes for their is only one True God. We do not worship another person or thing as a God. Try to imagine if you would long ago before anything exist as we know, than God spoke a word and things came to past. He made the heavens and the earth for man and woman pleasure, and he also made us the keepers of this earth to care and love all living things, creatures and one another.  Sometimes as a drive by different areas I am amazed at how dirty things have become, I ask myself is this the way we would care for our homes and if the answer is of course not, so than why do we treat God’s world like things. Garbage toss on the ground like it was a garbage can, into our oceans and lakes killing living things and I just don’t understand why humans enjoy doing this and more important why don’t some even care at all. God is a God who loves all of his children unconditional, he created this world for us to enjoy can we all take care of it and all things as if they were our own personal treasures because all of this is our treasure and a gift from God. It is a reminder how much he loves us and how precious we are to him.

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

THE ARMOR OF GOD

Isaiah 43 a.jpgBut now, this is what the Lord says, he who created you Jacob, he who formed you, Israel. Do not fear, for I have redeemed you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.                                                       Isaiah 43:1-2

Through you go thru difficulty times, God always shows compassion on his children. No matter what trials that you are facing at this very moment, you can count on God’s love and his compassion to see you thru. There are many times during the life of a Christian that we seem to face so many difficult times, and believe me when I tell you that you can feel that you are being attack from every side. When one problem in your life seems to arise and you feel that you have handle it, guess what here comes another, and then another for any of us, and guess what we are being attack. If we take a look into the book of Ephesians Chapter 6:10-17 the Apostle Paul tells us we need to put on the Full Armor of God and he is why: “Finally be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full Armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggles is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything to stand. Stand firm, with the belt of truth buckles around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

These words from Paul I continue to remind myself on a daily basis to get thru the day. You see is that Satan cannot stand for us to have a walk with the Risen Lord Jesus Christ, he loves to tear families apart anyway he possibly can, he wants to destroyed anyone lives by his lies he tells to anyone, however we cannot let him to it. This is why all of us need to put on the Full Armor of God each and everyday of our lives here on earth. It is very important for all of us to stay in the word of God not just when we feel like it, but everyday because when we don’t feel like to read that one day that is when Satan will attack us so that we become lazy and off track but we cannot let him, he may win a battle now and then however in the end HE WILL NEVER WIN THE WAR, Good will always win over evil, you just need to remember that. When you are suffering and your troubles seem endless, remember that Jesus is tenderly present in your afflictions. Instead of lamenting the way things are, search for Jesus in the wreckage of adversity. You will not fail to find the Risen Lord when you search for him with all of your heart. Jesus wants his children to experience more fully the greatness of his overflowing love. As you open yourself to his compassionate presence, this love flows into you more freely. We need to continue to stay in fellowship with Christ as well as with other Christians to continue to grow and to be able to serve one another. As you and I stay focus on our Risen Lord while go thru our trials they will not drown us or overcome us in anyway. Pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:17-18

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

Overcomer

“That day when evening came, Jesus said to his disciples.,” Let us go over the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious storm came up, and the waves broke  over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown. He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Peace! Be Still” Then the wind dies down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith? They were terrified and asked each other. “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”                                                        Mark 4:35-41 NIV                                       These words in the Gospel of Mark, talked about Jesus’ disciples who became so afraid because of the storm that they were facing, reminded me with the storms we all face during different times of our lives. No one here on earth is ever perfect neither is their lives, oh yes they may tell you everything is wonderful, but truth can be told not really. When we are children most of us can say that while growing up you had no worries at all, we ran and play, attend school, and perhaps church, until a storm becomes so real to us. Perhaps during all of your childhood you didn’t face some kind of tragedy, but eventually you will, just like all of us do. It is the way we all seem to handle life storms, do we run and hide, and cry out Lord save me!, sounds familiar to you, I have said this and perhaps you as well. Many such storms are the death of someone you loved very much and you feel as through you simply can not go on, overtime with God’s help you will be an overcomer. When financial difficulties come around and you simply don’t know how you are going to make this months bills, and somehow you do, that is when you are an overcomer. Sickness for you or someone you love, such as myself with a child with chronic illness and more than one. I try to remind myself in the middle of the storm that is going crazy all around me, just to ‘BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD”

 

I AM THE WAY & THE TRUTH &THE LIFE

I AM THE WAY,& THE TRUTH & THE LIFE.pngThomas said to him, “Lord we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way? Jesus answered, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and seen him.                    (John 14:6 NIV)

As we look to the sixth I AM statements of Jesus as well as reading chapter 14 we see that Jesus is telling his disciples not to let their hearts be trouble or afraid. I would say anyone would be afraid in knowing what is about to take place with Jesus being beaten and crucified for are sins. In spite of the difficult road Jesus was about to take he was still comforting his disciples. Some people in this world think they have it all figure out, but unless they except Jesus as their Lord and Savior they have been deceived. Jesus stating very clearly that He is the Way.

Jesus, through I AM statements, makes a clear case for His identity. He is the Bread of life, He is the Light of the world, and He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Jesus can make these bold statements claims, I AM statement, because they are true. The predications about the Messiah in the Old Testament are fulfilled and proven true through Jesus.

Of all the I AM statements we’ve looked at, the Resurrection and the Life points more directly to our future hope for eternal life. Because Jesus tells us He is the only way, it is important for us to see how His life fulfillment of prophecy.

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

God Cares

Psalm 149.pngPraise the Lord, Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise in the assembly of his faithful people. Let Israel rejoice in their Maker, let the people of Zion be glad in their King. Let them praise his name with dancing, and make music to him with tumbrel and harp. For the Lord takes delight in his people, he crowns the humble with victory. Let his faithful people rejoice in this honor and sing for joy on their beds.

(Psalm 149:1-5)

You were planned for God’s pleasure. The moment you were born into the world, God was there as an unseen witness, smiling at your birth. He wanted you alive, and your arrival gave him great pleasure. God did not need to create you, but he chose to create you for his own enjoyment. You exist for his benefit, his glory, his purpose, and his delight. Bringing enjoyment to God, living for his pleasure, is the first purpose of your life. When you fully understand this truth, you will never again have a problem with feeling insignificant.

(Section taken from the Purpose Drive Life by Rick Warren)

I am sure you as well as all of us here on earth have listen to the lies that Satan has told thru other people. Things like, you are not worth it, you won’t amount to anything, God does not love you, you are a failure, and the list of all the lies Satan has told is just that lies. You are worth it, you are a precious child of the Most High King himself who is Jesus Christ, he loves you so very much and his love for all of his children is unconditional and you do matter so much to him. His love for you is so deep that he spread out his arms to die for you and my friend that is true unconditional love, remember when someone is tell you lies, don’t believe it because Satan is the father of lies, and he does not want us to hear the truth and that is God cares.

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

Crucifixion Cross

crrown of thorns.pngThe Soldiers Mock Jesus                                      (Matthew 27:27-31 NIV)

Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus to the place called the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around him. They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. They spit on him, and they took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.

At the time of Jesus death, crucifixion was considered the most painful and degrading form of capital punishment in the Roman Empire. It was considered so horrible that it was used by the Romans only for salves, those from the provinces under the control, and the lowest type of criminals. It was not to be used for a Roman citizen. This is in accord with the Biblical account of Christ’s death and with church tradition, which asserts that Peter was also crucified (Peter  believed to be crucified upside down because he felt unworthy to be crucified the same position that Christ was) but Paul, a Roman citizen who was to  became a disciple later was beheaded. So although Jesus was completely innocent of all sin, he suffered the most horrible, degrading punishment knows. And yet his agonizing death was not an ordinary death…since he suffered for the sins of the world and turned this apparent defeat into a glorious resurrection that would, hereafter, defeat the power of all sin and death. Indeed, through the Cross, Jesus offers salvation to all who will believe in him.

Grace and Peace to you my friends