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Our Journey With God

Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God. 1 Peter 1:18 MSG

Month

December 2011

Preparing For New Year’s pt 4, “Rely Fully On God”

Proverbs 3:5(MSG)

 5-12 Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own.  Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track.  Don’t assume that you know it all.  Run to God! Run from evil!  Your body will glow with health, your very bones will vibrate with life!  Honor God with everything you own; give him the first and the best.  Your barns will burst, your wine vats will brim over.  But don’t, dear friend, resent God’s discipline; don’t sulk under his loving correction.  It’s the child he loves that God corrects; a father’s delight is behind all this.

Have you ever thought before you sit down any where, to check to make sure the seat you are sitting on will not break?  No, we sit down, with no thought in our minds if the chair or sofa or where ever we are about to sit on will just hold us up.  We could easily just fall to the ground and hurt ourselves.  But when it comes to our lives we lean on the things we should not we rely on friends and family for encouragement and some times we don’t get that encouragement or support we need.  But most of all we just lean on our own selves.  This is not good, you see we have a God who is just waiting on you to lean on Him.  He is just waitng on your prayer your cry out to Him so that He can help you and get you through your most difficult of days.  God is wanting you to rely on Him.  As the New Year approaches let us go into the New Year knowing we can rely on our God who is waiting for us, and he will get us through the good times and tough times of 2012. 

Pray:  Dear God, as I prepare for the new year, help me to rely fully on you.  help me not lean on myself or wait on someone else who probably won’t come through for me.  You are my God and who better to put all my trust in.  Thank you Lord for everything u do for me, continue to bless me. Amen. 

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Preparing For New Year’s pt.3 “Love One Another”

John 13:33-35

New International Version (NIV)

   33“My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come.  34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

We have been looking into what we need to do to “Prepare for the New Year”.  First, we “Should Seek The Lord’s Shelter”, and second, “Don’t Miss Opportunities God Has For You”.  Today as i read God’s word He calls us to “Love One Another”.  We should make it a point to really start the New Year right in God’s eyes and we can start by loving.  In our verse today Jesus is speaking with his disciples and He is preparing them for his absence.  He is calling us to imitate him, “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”  Jesus is calling us to love and He is not just calling us to give lip service either.  To love, first, we must be honest with one another.  This new year lets look forward to showing love by being honest.  Second, to love we must Respect each other.  By respecting each other we esteem other and give them a sense of worth.  I want to feel that can you imagine how people would react if you treated them with respect.  Lastly, let us care for others, what is caring?  The definition is giving serious attention to or heed.  To care there is an urgency to love someone.  As Jesus is calling us to Love One Another let us remember these three key points to love.  If we do them we will definitely be in obedience to the One who Loved us First. 

John 15:12
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you

John 14:21 (MSG) 

21“The person who knows my commandments and keeps them, that’s who loves me. And the person who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and make myself plain to him.”

Prayer:  God thank you for loving me, help me to love others more this new year.  I want to keep your commandments, help me to keep them.  your word says: I can do all things through Christ.” God give me that strength I need to this.  You are an awesome God, guide me in all I do. Amen

Preparing For New Year’s pt.2 “Don’t Miss The Oppertunities God Has For You.”

Luke 14:15-24 (NIV)

The Parable of the Great Banquet

 15When one of those at the table with him heard this, he said to Jesus, “Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.”  16 Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’  18“But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’   19“Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’   20“Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’   21“The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’  22“‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’  23 “Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full. 24 I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’”

In life we celebrate so many things.  We celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, new jobs, promotions, new baby, marriage, the purchase of a new home, a home-coming of a loved one, graduation, Christmas, New Years, valentines day, 4th of July, Cinco de Mayo, Mother and Father’s day, pearl harbor day, Martin Luther Day, president’s day, april fool’s day, easter, flag day, united nations day, Veterans Day,  and the list goes on.  (Thank you to my Co-workers  Makayia and Vida, for helping me with a list of “things we celebrate”).  But we never miss these opportunities, we put them in our calendars, we write them on post notes and we never forget them. Because they are important to us.  By remembering they say a lot of how we are.  if you remember a special occasion the other party is grateful for your recognition.  It says a lot about you and how you feel about the situation.  In this particular part in scripture we find Jesus eating at a prominent pharisee’s home.  It’s a opportunity that is missed by the people present.  Jesus gives us a glimpse of the nature of God.  He shows us the urgency of how God seeks to have a relationship with us no matter how you are.  A great example is in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve, God walked with them everyday, God created us to worship him.  He doesn’t make us, He give us the opportunity to choose for ourselves.  The Pharisee just before this has heard the parable of the Wedding Feast and how they were fighting for positions at the tabel, as they heard the parable  the pharisee commented “Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God” so a misconception still lumes  in the air, so Jesus tells this parable, knowing they were watching his every move.  The pharisee thought because he was a leader in the church that he had a position at table in the kingdom of God.  Jesus’ parable teaches us that only those who accept God’s invitation will be part of the feast in the kingdom of God.  It is a picture of how Israel rejected the Prophets God sent to them, even now as we read Israel is rejecting Jesus.   How does this apply to us?  As we continue to “Prepare for the New Year”, let us not miss this two-fold Invitation given to us by Jesus.  First, a warning not to be like the pharisee who thought he had a place at the table of the kingdom of God when he had not accepted His invitation through Jesus.  And second, to accept the invitation of having a relationship with God.  As we celebrate the things in our life let us not forget to celebrate the Love God has for You and Me

Pray:  Most Great God, our Heavenly Father.  You created me to worship you, today put in my heart to not forget all that you have done for me.  I seek you with all of my heart to Love and Worship you.  Help me not to miss the opportunities you have for me.  Thank you for my blessings you give to me everyday and help me to bless others.  Amen

Preparing For New Year’s “Seek The Lord’s Shelter for the New Year” pt1

Psalm 9:9 (NIV)
9 The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed,
   a stronghold in times of trouble.

Merry Christmas to all of you.  I pray that you and your family had a wonder Christmas together and are looking forward to a happy New Year.  I want us in these next few day leading to the New Year, is to prepare our lives for what God is going to do in them.  Today we are looking at a Psalm that David wrote because he wanted to praise God for what He has done in his life.  God gave him victory over his enemies and he continues to pray for his own deliverance.  But I love verse 9, “The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, and a stronghold in time of trouble.  This is such a great promise given to us.  Many of us including me have gone through something tragic in our lives and have had to really rely on God this last year.  And David is giving us a glimpse of who God is and what he will do for us.  Refuge is shelter or protection from danger.  David is telling us “God is a shelter who protects us from danger.  When life is beating us up and in those times we think there is no way out, and life is just so rough, and you want to scream so loud we can run to God.  Such a beautiful picture of God-loving us.  David also uses the word “Stronghold”, which means a “well fortified place.  Meaning as we run to God for shelter and protection there is nothing that can take us away from him.  As we look to the new year let us remember that in times of trouble lets run to our Lord who protects us.

Prayer: God help me today remember that when I find myself in times of trouble that we can rely on you and know that in your arms we are most protected.  Thank you God for your refuge and you everlasting love.  I love you Lord and thank you for loving me. 

Immanuel “God With Us”!

Matthew 1:20-23

20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[f]because he will save his people from their sins.”22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”[g] (which means “God with us”).

Christmas Eve is here.  I’m looking forward to tomorrow as we celebrate Christmas.  It is special to me because it is the birth of our Lord and Savior.  In our passage today i wanted to point out something that I saw today in our scripture that the Lord revieled to me.  It’s this simple fact, that even at birth his life is revield.  You see we know that Jesus died on the cross, but why.  First, lets look at his name “Immanuel”, it means “God with Us”.   Up to this point we owed a debt we could not ever pay.  God has made a way for us through his son Jesus.  21b “because he will save his people from their sins”.  We no longer are bound by our sin, Jesus came to set the captive free, he came to heal the sick, he came to save the world.  Today, tomorrow, and everyday after lets not just celebrate Christmas on just one day but everyday let us remember what Jesus has done for us, and what He continues to do from now on in our lives.  I pray that you always remember that “God is With Us”.  To all my Facebook family, My Friends and Family, I wish you a very Merry Christmsas and a Happy New Year!  Celebrate Jesus!

Prayer:  Thank you God for sending your Son to take my place on that cross and you have brought him to this earth “to save me from my Sin”.  Everyday help me to remember what you have done for me. I pray for my family and friends as they celebrate Christmas they remember that it is all about you.  You are the reason for the season.  Amen.

Rejoice In Everything and Pray About Everything!

Today I’m Dedicating This blog To My Cousin Yvonne and her dad Paul.. I love you both!
 
Philippians 4:4-9  (Message)
Pray About Everything

4-5Celebrate God all day, every day. I mean, revel in him! Make it as clear as you can to all you meet that you’re on their side, working with them and not against them. Help them see that the Master is about to arrive. He could show up any minute!  6-7Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.  8-9Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.

Life can be pretty tough sometimes; we work so hard to accomplish so many neat and wonderful things.  We grow up dreaming of “The American Dream”.  But life is of, its own, life happens.  In life there are good times and bad times, in life there are tough days and there are easy days.  And we are never ready for what life throws at us.  But! We have a God who is so great.  A God that is so loving.  He protects us, watches over us, provides for us, He never leaves us, a God who Died for Us!  The apostle Paul knew this and he of all people knew what suffering really meant.  In our scripture today Paul is telling us to “REJOICE!”.  Not just in the good times, but in those times when it is so tough, so hard to get up, so hard to do the things we do.  Even in those times we should rejoice.  And through this attitude of “joyfulness” in our lives others will see it and will marvel at the very thing that makes us so happy and will want the same in their life.  We should not worry or fret for anything, because for the one who trusts in the Lord is aware of his presence.  This is why we should not worry for anything, not even for the future.  Instead Pray About Everything, we should be willing to make our needs known to the Lord in prayer and trust that his answer will be the correct one.  Trusting in God snuffs out anxiety peace of mind.  He will Guard our hearts from all the anxieties and worries of this world.  Through Jesus Christ all this takes place as a result of our connection with him.  Rely on God and trust in Him and he will walk along side you through this thing called life. 

Alway remember “You can do all things through Christ who gives you Strength”.  Philippians 4:13 

Prayer:  God you are the giver of Life.  Everything that happens in our life is according to your plans.  Help us not to worry so much about things that come our way, but to trust and rely on you fully every day, every hour, every minuet.  Your plans for us are not to destroy us but to prosper us, and to give us a future and Hope.  (Jeremiah 29:11) Help us to remember your plan is the best for us because you know us.  Thank you for all the blessings you give us everyday.  In Jesus name we pray! Amen..

Loving Your Neighbor!

Luke 10:25-50  The Message (MSG)

 25Just then a religion scholar stood up with a question to test Jesus. “Teacher, what do I need to do to get eternal life?”  26He answered, “What’s written in God’s Law? How do you interpret it?”  27He said, “That you love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and muscle and intelligence—and that you love your neighbor as well as you do yourself.”   28“Good answer!” said Jesus. “Do it and you’ll live.”  29Looking for a loophole, he asked, “And just how would you define ‘neighbor’?”  30-32Jesus answered by telling a story. “There was once a man traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho. On the way he was attacked by robbers. They took his clothes, beat him up, and went off leaving him half-dead. Luckily, a priest was on his way down the same road, but when he saw him he angled across to the other side. Then a Levite religious man showed up; he also avoided the injured man.  33-35“A Samaritan traveling the road came on him. When he saw the man’s condition, his heart went out to him. He gave him first aid, disinfecting and bandaging his wounds. Then he lifted him onto his donkey, led him to an inn, and made him comfortable. In the morning he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take good care of him. If it costs any more, put it on my bill—I’ll pay you on my way back.’  36“What do you think? Which of the three became a neighbor to the man attacked by robbers?”   37“The one who treated him kindly,” the religion scholar responded.  Jesus said, “Go and do the same.”

Wow! I don’t think I can explain it any better than Jesus put it.  I looking at verse 36 and it’s cut and dry. “Go and Do The Same”!  The question was “who is my neighbor” ,  the answer is simple.  In other words everyone you come in contact with.  Everyday we face many situations and we go and do many different things.  And if your like me you go to work and at work there are people there that you really don’t want to be around.  Well God is calling us to LOVE.  I love teaching this passage because someone always tells me.  “Fernando but i can’t love my neighbor”, and the answer is correct you can not love them on your own.  Look at verse 27 there are two parts to it.  Here is the NIV version of it and this is how i will illustrate my point. ” “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” Before we can love our neighbor we have to love God.  But not with just words there are four things you have to love God with.  First, your heart, soul, strength, and mind.  Lets love God in all these areas of ourselves, in turn we will in tune with God.  John 15:5 says ““I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing”.  If we are not loving God first we will not be able to love our neighbor.  Because God’s love is perfect love and when we experience God’s love we will be able to love in return no matter who our neighbor is.  So Today “Go and Do the Same!  Love God and Love your Neighbor. 

Prayer:  Dear God, fill me with your love today.  You are first in my life, help me to be second.  Today help me to love my neighbor.  That person you put in front of me today, help me to love them.  Fathers bless me with your love today.  Amen

What Is The Proper Response To Christmas?

Matthew 2:10

The Message (MSG)

 9-10Instructed by the king, they set off. Then the star appeared again, the same star they had seen in the eastern skies. It led them on until it hovered over the place of the child. They could hardly contain themselves: They were in the right place! They had arrived at the right time!

Luke 2:15-18

The Message (MSG)

 15-18As the angel choir withdrew into heaven, the sheepherders talked it over. “Let’s get over to Bethlehem as fast as we can and see for ourselves what God has revealed to us.” They left, running, and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. Seeing was believing. They told everyone they met what the angels had said about this child. All who heard the sheepherders were impressed.

When i look at these two pasages i see two important Responses.  Happynes & Urgency!   Let’s look at happyness.  The Wise Men travled so far “as the song goes”, to get to Jesus.  Can you imagin studying all your life for this one oppertunity to meet Jesus.  There is much truth given to them by their name “Wise Men” because they were.  For these men to follow the stars ment that they had to know about the stars enough to know which one was going to be their guide, what to look for when it appeared, and know what they were going to need for this journey.  They were ready to follow.  Coming to the town of Bethlehem the star disappaers when they meet up with the king.  After the king sends them off it appears again.  Here is the response; the Mesage version states “They could hardly contain themselves”.  The NIV states; “When they saw the star, they were overjoyed”.  The Wise Men responded in Happness!   Now the Sheepherders I believe were Baptist because they had a meeting.  I’m just kidding.  The NIV states “After hearing the news of this, they said to one another, “Let us Go”.  This was the Urgency, the importantance of going.  Now when I say Let us go to where ever it is, i’m motivated to go where that is. Now the sheepheards were the same.  They were excited of this news and wanted to go. 

Now for us I believe this is how we should respond to Christmas.  With happyness and urgancy.  Happyness because “God sent His Son for us”, to die for our sins and make a way for you and I to enter Heaven and live with him.  And with the same Happyness and Urgency tell others the Good News of Jesus’ birth, His death, and that He has risen and lives today.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, thank you for sending your Son Jesus to earth to take my place.  Help me see the example of the Wise Men and the Sheepheards in their exceedingly great joy, and urgancy to know God and to tell others about Him.  Help me respond to this Christmas in this most positive way.  So that others can experiency the same joy I have in You.

Show Them Who Jesus Is Through Your Friendship

Matthew 9:12-13

The Message (MSG)

 12-13Jesus, overhearing, shot back, “Who needs a doctor: the healthy or the sick? Go figure out what this Scripture means: ‘I’m after mercy, not religion.’ I’m here to invite outsiders, not coddle insiders.”

When We Look At Jesus’ life and ministry we can see how important relationships were to Him.  Jesus knew what God’s plan was for him.  Jesus knew that He was on earth for one thing.  To die for you and me.  But at the same time He wanted us to know that by making relationship with others we could show them who Jesus is.  Using Jesus as an example we are to follow what he started.  Telling everyone who we encounter who Jesus is by creating lasting relationships.  Jesus was friends to many sinners, The people of the church of the time did not associate with sinners and thought of Jesus to be not a man of God because of who He associated with.  But in fact Jesus was befriending those who were spiritually sick and was bring them back to His father.  We should have friends who need Jesus in their life, just as Jesus did so long ago.  Allowing them to see the testimony or the story of our life where Jesus Himself is first in our life. 

Our Prayer:

Lord God, you are all-knowing and you know what the plan is for our life.  You are the one who puts us where we need to be to show your love to others.  I pray today that you put me in the path of someone who needs your love today.  Use me to shine your light today.  Help me to be a friend to others who need you.  Amen.

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