Monday, March 14, 2011

The Daily: No hands but our hands

"The LORD rewarded me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands hath He recompensed me." Psalm 18:20

During WWII, a beautiful cathedral in Europe was destroyed by the Nazis. When the people came together to rebuild the temple, they found a statue of Christ with His hands outstretched. They repaired the statue as best they could, but they could not recover the hands. Because they loved the statue as it was, they put a plaque underneath that reads: "He has no hands but our hands."

Remember this--Jesus Christ is the invisible part of the Christian. The Christian is the visible part of Christ. He is seen in us and through us. We are the visible part of the invisible Christ.

What we do in His name is representative of Him to the world. What are you doing with your hands today that is a testimony of Jesus Christ to a watching and lost world?


Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Leader

Jeremiah 3:15 - 'And I will give you pastors according to mine heart,

which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.'

Insecurity births bondage. When we use the pulpit or any platform to boost ourselves and make ourselves look better, we are abusing the position that God has given us and we do it at the expense of others. Be careful that you are not submitting yourself and your family to an overly insecure leader. It will only birth bondage in you and cause you to be spiritually immobilized. And be sure you are not leading with any of these characteristics listed. Let go of your feelings and rest in what God will do for you. There is no perfect leader, but some imperfections are dangerous and should not be tolerated. Seek God's wisdom before you decide to submit to any covering. There are some things we can deal with, but there are other things that may be deadly to our purpose in God and those things must be avoided. Here are some signs of an insecure leader.
1. Improper placement of gifts and callings - Whenever people are misplaced in a ministry, it's usually on purpose. People know what God has gifted them to do, but an insecure leader usually wants to place them in areas that they are not called to so they won't do too well. This keeps people looking to the leader for direction and makes an insecure leader feel like he's still the focus of the ministry or he still has power over the people. Often times, an insecure leader will give people positions so they won't leave the church. But misplacement of gifts in a ministry keeps the people looking to a man for direction and never really looking to God.
2. Micro-managing - This is a sure sign of an insecure person. They must know what's going on at all times. They have to know what each person and ministry under them is doing and always try to direct or lead each and every aspect of the ministry. This is to ensure that no one out shines them or no one can ever get credit for what they have done. This keeps the leader number one.
3. Plants - This is a very sad, yet very sure sign of an insecure pastor or leader. They'll put people around you to spy and tell them what you are doing. If you have a gift or calling and people are drawn to it, they will plant a person to come around you and sniff you out for them. They don't want your gift or calling to take the attention off them so they have to watch you with a "planted" person. What a shame, but oh so true.
4. Wrongfully removed - An insecure leader will move people for no reason. They will stop you if you are doing a good job or if you are too faithful to your department head because they fear that you will somehow lose your loyalty to them. They shift people around just when that person is settling into their position because they don't want you too successful in their church or ministry.
5. Armor-less armor bearing - An insecure leader is an armor bearer fanatic! They will have men running around them fixing their cloths, carmexing their lips, and wiping sweat from their foreheads. They can't open their own door, carry their own bible, or even drive themselves around without someone doing it for them. This is worship! Sure, men can be assisted with some things, but when it's excessive, it's a sign. A pastor should be the churches greatest servant, not served the greatest! This will put you in the position to have to prove how much you love a man before he will acknowledge your spiritual giftings. And we all know where that usually leads.
6. Spiritual Abortions - An insecure leader does not birth other ministries outside of their own. Check the track record. How many pastors have come out of this ministry? How many outreach ministries have been birthed? How many have been encouraged to pursue outside missions and evangelism that will reach beyond the church doors? An insecure leader will never push anyone to go do anything outside of the church because they fear losing members to them. So, they keep everything inside and never father outside ministries. And God forbid you try to leave this type of leader. They will make you feel like you are going to hell for leaving and there is nothing else out there.
7. Too much church - An insecure leader will always want to be at church! They love to call meetings, counsel everyone, and spend most of their family time and leisure time at the church. And they will even require you to be there at all times. When the doors open, you should be there. This is because they feel they are missing something or losing ground with the people if they don't see them. A secure leader invests in family time and allows freedom for his people to enjoy their lives and their outside interests.
8. No privacy - An insecure leader will almost always address your private issues from the pulpit. They will counsel with you and then preach your issues purposely to the people in the church. They will even call you up at times and embarrass you by dealing with your personal sins and issues before the whole church. A secure leader can handle your issues in private and not boost himself by making you look bad.
9. Masquerade - An insecure leader has to put on a mask to seem spiritual and deep. They cannot be common or seem common to the people because they strive to be feared by the membership. They depend totally on their reputation and not on the spirit of God in them. They have to make you feel less so they will feel bigger and better. It's one thing to be respected because of the Spirit of God in you, but when you demand respect it's artificial.
10. No gifts - The number one sign of an insecure leader is, they are always worried about what people think of them. They won't even allow certain gifts to operate in the ministry because it may make other's that don't flow in gifts jealous or uncomfortable. The ministry is always politcally correct. And usually, there are no gifts in operations. not even in the pastor. When the pastor cannot flow in gifts, the body will not because where the head is, the body must follow.
Be careful saint's of God. What God has given you is worthy of secure leadership and you must make sure you are not wasting space in a ministry. You must make sure you are following the right person. Sure, no one is perfect, but at least we must strive for it. And beware of leaders that cannot admit mistakes! When they never mess up or never confess to error, then beware! There is not a perfect man, and a secure leader can say "I was wrong"!
Suggested Reading: Eph. 4:11, Jer. 3:15, Jer. 10:21, Jer. 12:10, Jer. 23:1,

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Daily: Are The Intercessior

"We have sinned, committed iniquity, acted wickedly, and rebelled, even turning aside from Thy commandments and ordinances. . . . We have not listened to Thy servants the prophets. . . . Open shame belongs to us, O Lord . . . because we have sinned against Thee. . . . Indeed all Israel has transgressed Thy law and turned aside, not obeying Thy voice. . . . Thy people have become a reproach to all those around us" (Dan. 9:5-16).
In verses 5-16 Daniel identifies with his people and intercedes on their behalf. That's a common practice in Scripture. For example, Moses interceded for the Israelites after they sinned by worshiping the golden calf (Ex. 32:11- 13).

All Paul's recorded prayers are intercessions. In Ephesians 6:18 he instructs us to "be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints." In 1 Timothy 2:1-4 he says, "I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, in order that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth."

Similarly, the Lord's prayers are replete with intercessions. Even when hanging in agony on the cross, He prayed for His persecutors: "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing" (Luke 23:34).

When God placed us into the Body of Christ, He made us dependent on one another. When one member suffers, all suffer with it. When one is honored, all rejoice with it (1 Cor. 12:26). That's why Jesus instructed us to pray, "Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts. . . . And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil" (Matt. 6:11-13, emphasis added).

Let your prayers reflect a corporate and selfless mentality that embraces the needs of others.

Suggestions for Prayer:
Thank God for the people who have prayed for you over the years. Be aware of those for whom you should be praying.

Sometimes the demands of prayer can seem overwhelming because there's so much to pray for, but be faithful, knowing that your prayers are a delight to the Lord (Prov. 15:8).
For Further Study:Read John 17, noting how Jesus interceded for His disciples.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Drawing near to God: Praying with fervently

"I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes" (Dan. 9:3).
People view prayer differently. For some it is a last resort after all human options have been exhausted: "All I can do now is pray for you!" Others liken it to a spiritual spare tire--something used only in the event of an emergency. Many who should thrive on prayer have been lulled into complacency by an affluent and godless society.

Daniel, however, saw prayer as an opportunity to express the passion and fervency of his heart to the God he loved and served. In Daniel 9:3 he says, "I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him." That implies he set apart a specific time to devote to thoughtful, earnest, and fervent prayer. That is further supported by the way he prepared himself through fasting and donning sackcloth and ashes--symbols of humility and deep contrition over sin.

It might seem unusual for a man of Daniel's spiritual stature to be overwhelmed by his sense of sin, but the closer one draws to God, the more aware he is of his sinfulness. We see that in Paul, who called himself the foremost of all sinners (1 Tim. 1:15). That might seem like a ridiculous statement to us but Paul saw sin for what it was. So did Daniel.

The title "Lord God" in verse 3 emphasizes God's sovereign rule over all things. Daniel knew that God had permitted the Babylonian Captivity and that He alone could deliver His people from it. Consequently, Daniel gave the Lord his undivided attention as he prayed and sought mercy for himself and his people.

Daniel's fervency is a rebuke to much of the flippancy we hear in prayer today. It was profound because it was generated by God's Word and grounded in His will.

James 5:16 says, "The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much" (KJV). Be like Daniel--a righteous person who prays fervently with great effect.

Suggestions for Prayer:
Ask God to give you a greater sense of fervency in prayer.

Be sensitive to any sin that might be hindering your prayers.
For Further Study:Read Luke 11:5-13.

What parable did Jesus tell to illustrate the benefits of humble, persistent prayer?

How did Jesus contrast earthly fathers with their heavenly Father?

Your Brother In Christ

The Daily

If your wondering if you have a purpose in this life, well you surely do. Now what that is will be between you & God. Jesus doesn't merely save us from something, He saves us for something.

Have a blessed day & let the Lord lead & guide you through all that you are.

Your Brother In Christ


Saturday, March 5, 2011

Where are you

Matthew 13:58 - 'And he did not many mighty works

there because of their unbelief.'

How did you select your church home? Are you there because God told you to be there? Many people say, "i will be here until God tells me to leave" but God never really told them to be there in the first place!. So how could he tell them to leave if they didn't hear him in the beginning? When choosing your place of worship, you must realize, IT"S YOUR CHOICE!! God gave you the power to choose the kind of word you want to hear, the kind of people you want to fellowship with, and the progress you will make in this life. It's on you. If you are there because your cousins and aunties are there, then that's your choice.
What tends to happen many times is that we stunt our spiritual growth because the place we worship is not what we need. The sermons are irrelevant to us, the people don't like us, and the ministry doesn't receive the gift God placed in us. But we waste our time fighting for our gift and feeling like it's the devil that is trying to make us leave. We feel like we have to do battle with the enemy to worship freely and be accepted by that particular body, so we must stay and fight for our liberty! But didn't Jesus already do that? My friend, if you are being persecuted there, and if you don't have peace there, and if the sermons are not helping you grow there, and if you are not enjoying the services there, then why in the world would the DEVIL try to make you leave? Sounds like he found a way to stop your spiritual growth, and keep you in bondage. That's perfect for him. He is the one that is trying to make you stay! The enemy will keep telling you that you should not leave a church because you will be a church hopper! The church members will make you feel like you are going to hell because you are leaving them. But that's because they can't see past where they are. It's not about the natural church building, but it's about the church building that we all live in. And you must find a group of people that believe like you do and will accept what God has in you before you can enjoy the fellowship with them. It doesn't matter how long you have been there. It doesn't matter if you have a little position there and you don't want to give it up. If you want more, then ask God for more and he will direct you to receive more. But as long as you settle for where you are, you will struggle to receive from God. Don't sacrifice your spiritual growth for natural reasons. Go where you can grow and become what God has intended for you.
Suggested Reading: Acts 2:42, Phil. 1:4-7, Heb. 10:25, 1John 1:7

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Mid-day

Acts 3:19 - 'Repent ye therefore, and be converted,

that your sins may be blotted out, when the times

of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.'

In order for your soul to prosper you must repent. Any one can say "Forgive me Lord" or "I'm sorry Lord", but there is more to repentance than that. Here is the dilemma that we face daily when it comes to repentance. We say we are sorry or we ask for forgiveness, and that's fine. But we must get to the point in Christ where we can truly repent. Repent means to turn from it and not go back to it. This is the real breakthrough that should be taught to us. We hear breakthrough all the time, but it's mostly linked with some kind of financial miracle. We hear it linked to our past and our childhood struggles as well. But the real breakthrough is when you are truly delivered of that thing in your life that blocks your repentance unto God. And true deliverance is when you finally get the strength to say "no" once and for all, never to go back to that place again. Prosperity of the soul is when you can move past the sin and serve God whole heartedly!
Hate, anger, vengeance, malice, unforgiveness, bitterness, lies, deceit, lust, fornication, adultery, perversion, grief, envy, etc. are all things that block our souls prosperity! We gotta stop trying to only get money and prosper in the natural when our spirit man is still in it's infancy! We need true deliverance in the church of God today and the mickey mouse games must cease! Our leaders need deliverance, our members need deliverance and our children need deliverance. It starts at the head and works it way through the body. We need leaders that have their homes together and are not demanding to be called "Bishop" or "Prophetess" with children that are not in line with God. We need leaders that are not trying to teach 1000's of people about marriage, while their marriages are falling apart and they are walking out on their own spouses! We need leaders that will not try to get you set free and they themselves are bound to sin! When the leaders get it together, the body will follow. And if you want true deliverance from sin, you must find a leader that is delivered from sin! If you want your children saved, then you must find a leader that has saved children! If you want your soul to prosper, then you must repent and truly turn from sin and follow after God. People, we are in a wicked time and men are raising themselves up without repenting or turning from their sin. Sure, we all make mistakes and we all struggle for freedom from things. But the bottom line is, do you want a real breakthrough? Do you want your soul to prosper? Do you want true prosperity? Then you must repent and be truly delivered.