Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Know How To Be Truly Blessed and Rejoice!

Ask how one is blessed, and you will receive a plethora of ideas. Answers might include good health, happiness, family, wealth, friends, a good job, great accomplishments, retirement, ability to travel, and on and on. None of these things are wrong, unless we allow them to come before God (Matthew 6:33).

Everywhere Jesus went, He was continually teaching (Mark 10:1) and doing good (Acts 10:38). On one occasion of teaching, a certain woman from the crowd spoke up, calling the mother of Jesus blessed.

Luke 11:27, "And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, 'Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!'"

Some feel nothing can make one more blessed than having a child (of any age) doing good things. Certainly this is a reason for earthly happiness. However, we need to consider Jesus' response to the statement made by the certain woman.

Luke 11:28, "But He said, 'More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!'"

Think deeply on Jesus reply,
"More than that..."

More than good health.........more than earthly happiness.......more than one's family.........more than wealth........more than friends.........more than a good job.........more than retirement..........more than travel...........more than great accomplishments...........more than anything else!

If we desire to be truly blessed now and also in eternity, then we MUST HEAR AND DO as the word of God commands as Jesus said in Luke 11:28. Then we can truly rejoice!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Rejoice In The Narrow Way!

Jesus said:   "Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it" (Matthew 7:13-14).

The world says: "We are on different roads, but we will end up in the same place."

Will all really end up in the same place? Jesus said no! He said there is a wide, broad, spacious way that leads to destruction (eternal destruction in hell), and there is a narrow, strait, difficult way that leads to life – a life devoted now to obeying the commandments of God and finally life eternal in heaven.

Consider another scripture: "Then one said to Him, 'Lord, are there few who are saved?' And He said to them, 'Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able'" (Luke 13:23-24).

Does the one narrow way mean there is not room in heaven for many? No, there is room for all who will obey God’s commandments.

"The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9).

God wants all to be saved, but not all will choose to the narrow way. To be saved and enter heaven, one must choose to obey God's commandments.

Entrance to heaven is only through the narrow way.

The broad way, the way to destruction, is the way of the world which says there are many ways to heaven.

Which way will you choose: God's way or the world's way?

Are you on the way of many or the way of few?

"Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it"  (Matthew 7:13-14).

Only if you choose God's way – the narrow way – can you rejoice in the Lord!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Rejoice for Faithful Brothers and Sisters In Christ

"For I rejoiced greatly when brethren came and testified of the truth that is in you, just as you walk in the truth" (3 John 3).

One cannot be faithful without walking in God's truth. Certainly, we should rejoice over those who walk in the truth. We should encourage and pray for these to continue in faithfulness.

"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy" (Philippians 1:3-4).

Read the four chapters of Philippians, and you will see the joy Paul had for the faithful brethren in Philippi.

"Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved" (Philippians 4:1).

These faithful brethren were Paul's joy and crown, his prize, in the figurative sense. He was encouraging them to stand fast in the Lord, which would bring even more joy. Just as Paul felt great joy, so also should we feel great joy over Christians who are like-minded and are striving to be of one accord, walking in God's truth.

"For though I am absent in the flesh, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ" (Colossians 2:5).

"For what thanks can we render to God for you, for all the joy with which we rejoice for your sake before our God, night and day praying exceedingly that we may see your face and perfect what is lacking in your faith" (1 Thessalonians 3:9-10).

"Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand" (2 Corinthians 1:24).

This same rejoicing was felt for the faithful Christians in other places. What a great example this should be for Christians today.

Let's always rejoice and encourage faithful brethren who are walking in the truth!

Monday, August 22, 2011


Last week, there was great rejoicing as another grandchild was born into our family. I stood looking at him with tears in my eyes, thanking the God of all creation for another life and marveling at God's wonders. This little one arrived several weeks early, yet was formed so perfectly by the hand of God, while still within the womb. "For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb" (Psalm 139:13).

What a blessing this little one is already to all his family!
"Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward" (Psalm 127:3).

As Jesus went about teaching many while living on this earth, a certain woman spoke to Jesus, saying in Luke 11:27, "...Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!"    Note Jesus' reply to her in verse 28, "But He said, 'More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!'"

Yes, we rejoice when a new life enters the world, but we also want to remember whom Jesus called blessed................those who hear and keep God's word. This should bring us the greatest rejoicing!      Are YOU hearing and keeping God's word?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Rejoice In Serving Others

Rejoice In Serving Others

The idea of serving others is almost a "foreign" idea in today's world when most say: "What's in this for ME?" or "The world OWES me, so pay up!"

However, Jesus' teachings did NOT promote either of these ideas.

"Then Jesus said to him, Away with you, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve' " (Matthew 4:10 ).
When we serve others in a manner pleasing to God, we are also serving God.

If we are serving others in order to receive the praise of men, then we are NOT serving God, we are serving self or the world, which is serving Satan. Jesus teaches we cannot serve two masters.

"No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon"     (Matthew 6:24).

Jesus, not only taught others to serve, but He Himself served others.

"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45).

In Hebrews 12:28, we are taught to "...serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear."

Jesus understood this principle and tried to help Martha understand it as she complained to Jesus that her sister Mary had left her to serve alone (Luke 10:40-42).   Martha was "distracted with much serving..."    She was cumbered, drawn away, over-occupied; she was too busy about the matter and "worried and troubled about many things."   Can one rejoice in serving while in such a frame of mind as this? Certainly not!   Jesus then taught Martha a very important lesson. Jesus was NOT teaching that serving others is not needed.

Only when we remember to FIRST "choose that good part, which will not be taken away" can we truly rejoice in serving God and others, and "...through love serve one another" (Galatians 5:13).

Monday, July 4, 2011

Rejoice For Freedom


Hope you are rejoicing today with me for the freedom we enjoy in the USA. We need to always remember this freedom was and is being paid for with a great price. Have you stopped to remember this?

Pray for someone you know who is, even now, defending our freedom. Also pray for others whom we do not know who are serving in the military and defending the freedom we enjoy. While you are praying, don't forget to include the families of these! Families are enduring great sacrifices as they face days, weeks, months, etc. without their loved ones who are away.

We need to continually support those serving our country and their families, while we rejoice in the freedom enjoyed in this great land.

As thankful as we are for this physical freedom, there is an even greater freedom that we should seek.   Do you know this freedom? Are you rejoicing in this freedom?

"And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness" (Romans 6:18).

Thursday, June 23, 2011

How Can I Rejoice?


How can a young mother rejoice when she has just delivered a stillborn baby? How can a man rejoice when he has just buried his beloved helpmeet? How can a family rejoice when a call has just been received about a horrible accident? How can one who has been betrayed by an unfaithful spouse rejoice? How can a Christian rejoice when she has been hurt deeply by another Christian?

It truly is difficult to rejoice about any of these situations or any other adversities which arise in our lives. As we continue growing as a Christian, we understand, from God's word, how and why we can "rejoice always" (1 Thessalonians 5:16).

For now, let's just focus on the verse we looked at earlier. "Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!" (Philippians 4:4).

Our rejoicing is IN THE LORD, in His love, His care, His mercy. Our rejoicing is because of the hope we can have if we are walking in obedience to God's commandments.

"Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God" (Romans 5:1-2).

Monday, June 20, 2011

Rejoice In The Lord


If you are like me, sometimes you just do not feel like rejoicing. Things happen that make us sad; things happen we do not like; things happen that upset us; things happen that hurt us. The list could go on and on. So why make such a "big deal" over rejoicing?

Why? Because God commands us to rejoice in the Lord. We are not rejoicing because of what is happening around us. We are REJOICING IN THE LORD.

Read carefully the following verses and notice the commands; then notice the wonderful promise of God in the last verse!

"Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God" (Philippians 4:4-6);

"and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7).

Remember: obey God's commands and receive His wonderful blessing of the peace of God which surpasses all understanding!