Tuesday, October 30, 2012

+DEV+ Grounded Hearts

Date: October 30, 2012 9:23 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Grounded Hearts

Grounded Hearts

"I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow." (1 Corinthians 3:6)
Scripture Focus: Luke 8:4-8, 14-15

Jesus told a story about how human hearts react to the Word of God when they hear it. One kind of heart is completely unreceptive. With a little help from Satan, it's as if it never heard the Gospel at all. Then there are the stone hearts. Even though they like what they hear, their hearts are so impervious that the Word cannot root. Thirdly, there are hearts which hear the Good News, but are full of thorns (worries, riches and pleasures). The message is choked out.

Fortunately, some hearts have their soil prepared. They've been seeking after God, trying to find the Truth. When they hear the Word, their hearts are a fertile field where seed can grow to maturity, producing a harvest.

It's never too late to ask God to change your heart. He can turn any heart into the perfect growing place for the fruits of His Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22). Won't you ask God to grow a harvest of His fruit in you?

Insight: Oft As The Precious Seed Is Sown,/ Thy Quickening Grace Bestow,/ That All Whose Souls The Truth Receive/ Its Saving Power May Know. (John Cawood, 1819)

+DEV+ From Death to Life

Date: October 30, 2012 12:26 AM
Topic: +DEV+  From Death to Life

From Death to Life

"I am the resurrection and the life whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"    (John 11:25-26)
Scripture Focus: Isaiah 61:1-3

"Dead to the world" is an expression we use to mean someone is sound asleep and unaware of what's going on around him. He's like someone dead. People can go through they're waking hours like this too, feeling dead to everything around them. Nothing excites or entices them. Sleep becomes a welcome relief. Like a full stomach makes the thought of food unappetizing, a heart that has experienced too much of this world can feel life is unappetizing and dull dead.

    Praise God, He has a remedy: Life in Christ! The Bible says that if we give our dead hearts to Him, He will empower them with a joyful, resurrected life. He promises to clean away the ashes and tattered garments of our mourning and give us beauty, gladness, and praise. God sent Jesus not only to take away our sin and deadness, but to fill us with the vibrancy that only a risen Savior can give. Christian writer Nancy Groom put it this way: "Once we've tasted being alive, we can't go back to being dead. 'Aliveness' in God is addictive."

Insight: He Lives, He Lives, Salvation To Impart!/ You Ask Me How I Know He Lives?/ He Lives Within My Heart. (Alfred H. Ackley, 1933)

Monday, October 29, 2012

Our church's outreach missions ministry website is up...

Our pastor has arranged for a web site up of our church's outreach missions ministry.
it can be found at:


It describes the main mission of our little church not only to the Rolla area but to the American southwestern Indian tribes.
Pastor Douglas Cline was the Navaho Church of God overseer for many years before retiring from that post, but still has a heart for them.
Many churches have a world wide missions outreach but very few support the American Indian. Millions of Dollars go overseas to various missions but very few will look to our own borders at the need here in the USA. The statistic is that for every $100,000 sent overseas $0.50 is given towards the needs of the American Indian. If you think about it, the "government" puts them on the worst possible lands that will not grow anything and then give them a paltry $135.00 each month per family to live on. The land they have they do not even have the mineral rights to it and the Government takes the oil/gas/minerals/anything of real value from them. Turquoise Stone is the only mineral they are allowed to collect to make jewelry from. The mines are so heavily regulated they can only work them for a few hours each week (lest they get rich!) just enough to get a few ounces of silver to make their jewelry.

Currently they isn't much information of the Church aspect yet but it will be coming in time as they continue to "build" the website.
I encourage everyone to stop by and check it out.

+DEV+ Distracted Hearts

Date: October 29, 2012 1:07 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Distracted Hearts

Distracted Hearts

"I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."  (John 10:10B)
Scripture Focus: Luke 10:38-42

I have a passion for reading. I will read almost anything, but I do not say that with pride. You see, though I prefer a good Sci-Fi or a novel, the junk mail will do, or a two year old weekly news magazine. At one time this habit of mine became such a hindrance that I chose to go on a "reading fast." For a while I "fasted" from all printed materials except my Bible. Instead of being a source of information and a pleasure, reading had become not only a time-waster, but had begun to fill the space in my heart which should have been reserved for connecting with Jesus.

Our Lord God calls us to abundant life. His desire is to fill our hearts to overflowing. If we are pre-filled with something already, we may well miss His "still, small voice" (1 Kings 19:12) speaking to us. Like Martha, is there something, even some "good" thing, distracting your heart? Make the better choice, as Mary did, and sit at Jesus' feet. May your heart be content in and attentive to Him.

Insight: Habits of life, though harmless they seem,/Must not my heart from Him ever sever/He is my all, there's nothing between. (Charles A. Tindley, 1905)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

+DEV+ Wants vs. Needs

Date: October 25, 2012 10:04 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Wants vs. Needs

Wants vs. Needs

"And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.(PHILIPPIANS 4:19)
Scripture Focus: Psalm 103:1-5

We once knew a charming and pretty woman who, with her handsome husband, son and daughter, two cars and nice suburban home, looked like the American Dream personified. How amazed I was one day when she showed us her "Wish Book" - page after page cut from magazines and catalogs of things she still wanted: a new house, new cars, a new couch, new TV, each thing improved from the ones she already had. My heart ached for her.

Sometimes our hearts have trouble being content with the blessings God has already given us, or perhaps we don't see them as blessings because they are not what we wanted. The more we thank and praise God for what He has already given us, the more we recognize His good care for us. God's "good things" are not always the same as the world's. In fact, they are better! They are individualized for us by our Creator who knows just what our hearts need to be happy and content. He promises to open His hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing (Psalm 145:16), including you.

Insight: Thou And Thou Only Be First In My Heart./ High King Of Heaven, My Treasure Thou Art. (Irish Hymn, 8Th Century)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

+DEV+ The War is Over!

Date: October 24, 2012 8:41 PM
Topic: +DEV+  The War is Over!

The War is Over!

"And there was war in heaven. ...the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven." (REVELATION 12:7-8)
Scripture Focus: Luke 10:17-24

It's hard enough to imagine heaven, let alone war in heaven. Obedient angels under Michael were locked in combat with Satan and his warriors. Shouts of war ricocheted throughout heaven, sometimes in defeat, sometimes in victory, until a victor came.

John saw a decisive change in heaven; a new force appeared enabling Michael to rally and overcome Satan whom he then cast out of heaven. No longer could Satan enter the presence of God, as in the time of Job, and accuse believers. Standing before God is our Jesus who intercedes for us, not Satan who wants to destroy us. Satan "lost his place" in heaven.

John then heard the song, "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of His Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down" (Revelation 13:10). War in heaven is over and the victor declared with trumpet call: King Jesus! The wounded adversary was crushed by Jesus' heel.

Insight: Our Hearts Are Like Heaven's Battlefield, The War Raging Between Who I Am And Who I Know Christ Wants Me To Be. Flee To God For Understanding.

+DEV+ Weapon Number Three

Date: October 24, 2012 3:28 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Weapon Number Three

Weapon Number Three

"They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death." (REVELATION 12:11)
Scripture Focus: Revelation 7:9-17

A friend of mine that I had met in Springfield  told me that in 1969 when he lived in Nairobi, Kenya where ethnic rivalry reached  a fever pitch with approaching elections. To assure victory, Kenya's largest tribe revived an ancient loyalty oath that swore obedience to the tribal ancestors. For born-again Christians, this was a problem. They could not "drink the blood oath" because they had already "drunk" the blood of Jesus. As they said, "The two bloods do not mix." Their determination to follow Jesus - even if it meant death - marked the revived Christians.

He told us of the events at that time eventually led to a funeral he attended for one Christian man martyred for Christ. Thousands gathered to mourn his death and celebrate his life. It was truly a holy moment when the martyr's widow - also beaten, but still alive - stood with raised, bandaged arms to say, "My departed husband and I freely forgive in the name of Jesus Christ those who did us harm." Do I value my Lord more than my own life, even so much as to not shrink from death? Do I freely forgive as He forgives me? Let us consider those sobering questions today.

Insight: "... Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters." (1 John 3:16)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

+DEV+ Weapon Number Two

Date: October 23, 2012 12:18 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Weapon Number Two

Weapon Number Two

"They overcame him by the...word of their testimony."  (REVELATION 12:11)
Scripture Focus: Romans 10:1-10

John "was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus" (Revelation 1:9). "The testimony of Jesus" could mean that Jesus testified openly about His relationship to the Father. It also may refer to how John and his brothers and sisters in the Lord testified openly that they believed Jesus Christ - not Caesar - was Lord. They testified about their desire to see others set free from sin so that they could enjoy peace with God.

A testimony like that seems quite natural, but it is one of the hardest things to articulate. I would rather preach a dozen sermons, well-crafted and finely-illustrated, than share a daily testimony about my walk with Jesus Christ. Why? Because it is such a powerful weapon against evil that Satan tempts us not to use it. John lists "testimony" as one of the weapons that believers use in spiritual warfare. "They overcame by the word of their testimony." An up-to-date testimony covered with the cleansing blood of Jesus spells doom for Satan.

Insight: Whether A Christian's Life Is Consistent Or Not With What He Claims To Believe, The Lord Will Use Whatever He Sees Fit For His Purposes.
Date: October 23, 2012 12:18 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Weapon Number Two

Weapon Number Two

"They overcame him by the...word of their testimony."  (REVELATION 12:11)
Scripture Focus: Romans 10:1-10

John "was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus" (Revelation 1:9). "The testimony of Jesus" could mean that Jesus testified openly about His relationship to the Father. It also may refer to how John and his brothers and sisters in the Lord testified openly that they believed Jesus Christ - not Caesar - was Lord. They testified about their desire to see others set free from sin so that they could enjoy peace with God.

A testimony like that seems quite natural, but it is one of the hardest things to articulate. I would rather preach a dozen sermons, well-crafted and finely-illustrated, than share a daily testimony about my walk with Jesus Christ. Why? Because it is such a powerful weapon against evil that Satan tempts us not to use it. John lists "testimony" as one of the weapons that believers use in spiritual warfare. "They overcame by the word of their testimony." An up-to-date testimony covered with the cleansing blood of Jesus spells doom for Satan.

Insight: Whether A Christian's Life Is Consistent Or Not With What He Claims To Believe, The Lord Will Use Whatever He Sees Fit For His Purposes.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

+DEV+ Weapon Number One

Date: October 21, 2012 8:25 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Weapon Number One

Weapon Number One

"They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb..."  (REVELATION 12:11)
Scripture Focus: Exodus 12:1-13

We do well to ponder the wonder of the blood of Jesus, shed on Calvary. His poured-out blood represents the totality of Jesus' atoning work. How powerful is it? First, "Through the blood of the eternal covenant [Jesus] was brought back from the dead" (Hebrews 13:20). He broke the bonds of death by His blood. He stood alive on earth by the resurrection power of His own blood.

Second, we read that He appeared in heaven where He presented His blood. "He (Jesus) did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption" (Hebrews 9:12). When God almighty saw the blood of Jesus, the victory was won. Jesus died as God's Lamb without spot or blemish even though He was tempted to the extreme by Satan. Jesus overcame Satan by the power of His own blood.

Knowing that there is only one way to overcome Satan - that is by appealing to the powerful blood of Jesus - is enough for me. "Nothing but the blood of Jesus"!

Insight: We Need Not Stand Powerless Before The Tempter. Remain Under The Covering Of The Blood Of Jesus; By His Power, We Are "Overcomers."

Thursday, October 18, 2012

+DEV+ Hole or Whole?

Date: October 18, 2012 11:24 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Hole or Whole?

Hole or Whole?

"Jesus replied: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'"  (Matthew 22:37)
Scripture Focus: Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Every human being is born with a hole in his or her heart. No, it's not a congenital medical condition; it's a birth defect of the spirit. Seventeenth-century French philosopher Blaise Pascal put it like this: "There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every person, and it can never be filled by any created thing. It can only be filled by God, made known in Jesus Christ."

Have you experienced the emptiness of living without God, the weight of trying to fill that hole with something other than the Christ of Calvary? There are many Christians who have never nailed their "other than’s” to that cross. We go through life wondering why we aren't experiencing the fullness and joy of salvation, but continue filling ourselves with the world's goods and ideas. We accept the lies of the prince of darkness, and remain unsatisfied with who we are and what we have in Christ.

Jesus is the great Physician. He desires to heal all our spiritual illnesses by filling us with Himself. Let Him heal your heart now.

Insight: Jesus Thou Joy Of Loving Hearts / From The Blest Bliss That Earth Imparts / We Turn Unfilled To Thee Again. (Bernard Of Clairvaux, 12Th Century)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

+DEV+ Is Anyone Thirsty?

Date: October 17, 2012 10:29 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Is Anyone Thirsty?

Is Anyone Thirsty?

"Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near."  (Isaiah 55:6)
Scripture Focus: Isaiah 55

Isaiah 55 is a passage full of invitation and encouragement to come, listen and seek. The human body knows hunger and thirst; we all need food and drink to survive. However, this is an invitation to eat and drink for free and in so doing find sustenance that is good - forever - for the soul. The New Living Translation starkly warns, "Listen, for the life of your soul is at stake" (vs. 3). If we heed the warning and respond to the invitation, then the LORD establishes His everlasting covenant with us: we will receive mercy, pardon and His unfailing love.

In verse 6 we are urged to seek the LORD while we can find Him and to call on Him while He is near. Don't miss the opportunity to seek and find restoration for your soul through Jesus. Perhaps your greatest need comes because you have never asked for the forgiveness of your sins. Do that today, while there is still time. Or maybe your soul is just tired and weary from the journey. Then turn to Him, the Good Shepherd, the Restorer of your soul.

Insight: Restoration For The Soul Is Available To The Thirsty, Weak, Broken, Needy, Crushed, Battered And Bruised. Seek The Lord, And Call On Him Now.

Monday, October 15, 2012

+DEV+ Are You a Foot Washer?

Date: October 15, 2012 10:14 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Are You a Foot Washer?

Are You a Foot Washer?

"I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you."  (John 13:15)
Scripture Focus: John 13:1-17

One of the most humbling acts of ministry I have ever been a part of took place in a small house church in South Korea. Where I spent many an evening with a group of fellow christians. Mom and Pop as they were called ministered to Service men and women stationed in Korea lived in Seoul Korea

At one point Pop said, "Brother, can we wash your feet?" We accepted, and as they washed our feet we prayed for each other. Water poured down along with tears, first from one and then to another until all had been washed.

I often remind myself that, as we sing, our worship is first an offering to God. However, we also have the privilege through worship of "washing the feet" of the weary souls who gather there. I pray that you will be able to minister to a hurting friend today.

Insight: Is There An Act Of Humble Service That God Is Calling You To, Firstly For Him And Then For The Benefit Of Some Weary Soul?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

+DEV+ Temple Rebuilt

Date: October 14, 2012 11:41 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Temple Rebuilt

Temple Rebuilt

"In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord." (Ephesians 2:21)
Scripture Focus: 1 Corinthians 12

As well as our individual role as the temple of the Holy Spirit, Paul reminds the believers in Ephesus (Ephesians 2:21), Corinth (1 Corinthians 3:16, 17) and us that together we also have a corporate role as a dwelling place for His Spirit. It is therefore vital that we not neglect our commitment to the fellowship of believers God has placed us in. This is more than just regular attendance or some form of religious observance; it's what the book of Acts describes as devotion. "They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer" (Acts 2:42).

In 1 Corinthians 12 we read that each of us has received a spiritual gift (or gifts) as a means of helping the entire church. Paul then describes the different gifts given to the many parts that make up the body. He speaks of the need for each person to use his or her spiritual gifts for the benefit of the whole body. If we are negligent in exercising the talents God has given, then the whole body suffers. When we are faithful stewards of His gifts, we bring glory to Him.

Insight: Ask God To Reveal To You The Spiritual Gift(S) He Would Have You Use To Encourage Others.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

+DEV+ Temple Ruins

Date: October 10, 2012 9:25 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Temple Ruins

Temple Ruins

"Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?"  (1 Corinthians 6:19)
Scripture Focus: 1 Peter 2:4-11

While Stationed in Germany I visited Greece. In a guide book to Athens, of the top 10 tourist attractions listed, five are ancient temples, four are museums and one is a cemetery. Of course, the temples visited by millions of tourists in Athens are now no more than ruins, breathtaking as they are.

Paul reminds the early church in Corinth that their bodies, temples of the Holy Spirit, are to honor God. The tragedy for the church today is that many of the Temples of the Holy Spirit have become ruins in great need of restoration. They suffer neglect, apathy, loss of faith, false teaching... However, all is not lost. In 1 Corinthians 6 Paul reminds the believers that they are not their own but have been bought at a great price. We don't have to fret about how we will be put back together again; the Lord has already made a way! Submit the ruins of your life to Jesus, the temple builder and cornerstone Himself. Watch and see how He will restore you into a vibrant worshipping servant once again, a servant with the Spirit of God dwelling inside rather than a spirit of fear or depression.

Insight: God Never Intended The Church To Become A Tourist Attraction But Rather A Living Example Of His Power To Restore And Renew.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

+DEV+ Failure Isn't Final

Date: October 9, 2012 10:43 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Failure Isn't Final

Failure Isn't Final

 "Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, 'Do you love me?' He said, 'Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.' Jesus said, 'Feed my sheep.'"  (John 21:17)
Scripture Focus: John 21:1-19

Within days of receiving the Holy Spirit and his commission from Jesus (John 20:21), Peter is at a loss for what to do. Uncertain, he heads back to fishing with a few other disciples. From what we know, there were at least three skilled fishermen in the boat, yet they toiled all night and caught nothing.

Then Jesus gives a fishing lesson, and they bring in a miraculous haul of fish. At this point Peter recognizes the LORD, and - typically impulsive - abandons ship to swim ashore where Jesus already has a barbecue breakfast prepared. Some scholars have noted that Peter denied Jesus three times after Jesus' arrest, but now Jesus restores him three times with His repeated question of "Do you love me?" The Lord used even Peter's denial as a tool in causing Peter to lean harder on the Rock, Jesus. After Peter's third reply, Jesus confirms, albeit in a veiled manner, that Peter's earlier claim of being ready to die for the LORD would one day come to pass. Both Peter's calling and future were restored.

Insight: Jesus Will Give Us The Chance To Live Up To Our Bold Statements Of Faith. Our Failure Need Never Be Final.

Monday, October 8, 2012

+DEV+ Rejected by His Own People

Date: October 8, 2012 9:01 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Rejected by His Own People

Rejected by His Own People

"All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. 'Isn't this Joseph's son?' they asked."  (LUKE 4:22)
Scripture Focus: Luke 4:14-30

It was no coincidence that on the day Jesus returned to the synagogue in His home town, the Scripture reading was from Isaiah 61, about the year of the Lord's favor. There were set daily readings throughout the year in the Jewish calendar. Recently filled with the Holy Spirit's power, Jesus would be in Nazareth on God's appointed day.

At first the congregation responded well to the message of release for the captives, sight for the blind, freedom from oppression and the time of the Lord's kindness. Great sermon topics, right? When Jesus announced that He was the fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy, Luke records that they spoke well of Him, but were puzzled at His claim. After all, this was His home town, and they knew He was just Jesus, the carpenter's son.

Soon the crowd turned on Him, their anger provoked when Jesus confirmed that a prophet is indeed treated without honor in His own town. And so began Jesus' ministry of restoration that ultimately led Him to the cross for us three years later.

The Gospel Is Clearly Good News; However, It Is Also Controversial And Confrontational And Demands A Response.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

+DEV+ Restored by God's Presence

Date: October 7, 2012 8:30 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Restored by God's Presence

Restored by God's Presence

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."  (Psalm 46:1, NASB)
Scripture Focus: Psalm 46

My Jr. High School English teacher disliked redundancy. For example, if a student wrote "very unique" in an essay, she would mark the paper, pointing out that it is either unique or it is not; therefore the word "very" is redundant. I wonder what she would say to the translators of Psalm 46 about God being a "very present help." Surely God is either present or He is not!

But in this Scripture passage we have great comfort through these words. Our heavenly Father is more than just "present." He is with us in the very heart of our lives, an integral part of our life's troubles. He is not a mere bystander. God's being "very present" with us is as different from just "present" as the friend who says, "I'm coming over to help right now," compared to the friend who says, "I'm here if you need me." God didn't just let us know He was there if we ever needed Him. He said, "I'm coming over to help right now." He did that by sending His Son, our Savior, Jesus, right into this world and into our very lives.

God Promises Never To Leave Us Or Forsake Us. Keep Watch, Lest You Fail To Acknowledge His Very Presence In Your Life.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

+DEV+ Restored by God's Mercy

Date: October 4, 2012 11:38 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Restored by God's Mercy

Restored by God's Mercy

"Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions."  (Psalm 51:1)
Scripture Focus: Psalm 51

To understand the background to Psalm 51, read 1 Samuel 11-12. Here you will find the account of King David's adulterous affair with Bathsheba, the murder that followed, his encounter with the prophet Nathan, and finally the confession of his sins. Psalm 51 records David's cry to God for mercy, compassion, cleansing, purification, renewal, forgiveness, and restoration from this incident.

The most fundamental restoration of our soul comes when we acknowledge our sinfulness before God and ask for His forgiveness and cleansing. In 1 John 1:8-9 we read, "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."

Only the Creator God can create in us a new heart and renew a right spirit within us. Only the merciful and compassionate God can remove the guilt and shame of our sins and restore our relationship with Him. He is faithful, and He will do it.

Insight: Confession Doesn't End At Salvation. Continue To Take Time To Confess Your Sins And Then Accept The Forgiveness That God Has Promised.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

+DEV+ Hosanna! Hosanna!

Date: October 3, 2012 9:04 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Hosanna! Hosanna!

Hosanna! Hosanna!

"The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, 'Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!'"  (Matthew 21:9)
Scripture Focus: Matthew 21:1-11

The psalmist, Asaph, in Psalm 80 uses a repeated refrain: "Restore us, O God; make your face shine upon us, that we may be saved." Salvation and restoration go together.

Many in the crowd who shouted "Hosanna!"  (meaning "save us") thought that Jesus was a political Messiah coming to restore the kingdom to Israel. Even the apostles echoed these thoughts prior to the Ascension (Acts 1:6).

However, the salvation promised through Christ is a spiritual matter concerning the life or death of the soul. When the birth of Jesus was explained to Joseph by the angel, he was told, "you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21).

And finally, in Revelation 7 we read of a heavenly consummation of Jesus' earthly Triumphal Entry. "They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: 'Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.'" May we join that celebration, too!

Insight: To Join The Heavenly Throng Proclaiming The Salvation Of The Lamb, You Must Cry Out "Hosanna!" Here On Earth And Receive Salvation From Your Sins.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

+DEV+ A Daily Exercise Plan

Date: October 2, 2012 11:25 PM
Topic: +DEV+  A Daily Exercise Plan

A Daily Exercise Plan

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day."  (2 Corinthians 4:16)
Scripture Focus: 2 Corinthians 4

A simple yet profound line from one of the songs I learned as a child in Sunday School is "Read your Bible, pray every day, and you'll grow." Our souls need nourishment: God's Word is our food and drink. Prayer is the air we breathe.
Paul reminds the Corinthians and us that the treasure of the gospel is held in perishable containers: weak bodies. Any spiritual growth observed in our lives is all for God's glory. Paul doesn't hold back in detailing the challenges ahead for the church. He himself was pressed on every side by troubles, perplexed, hunted down, knocked down, suffering and living under constant danger of death. The outlook for his readers was similar.
If these descriptions sound alien to us in our comfortable Western existence, perhaps we need a spiritual health check. Have we stopped growing? Christians in the persecuted church daily experience the life described by Paul and yet can say, "Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all."

Insight: Are There Areas Of Weakness In Your Christian Walk Where You Once Knew Growth? Is It Time For Some Rehabilitation And A Change Of Diet?

Monday, October 1, 2012

+DEV+ Ministry Restored

Date: October 1, 2012 11:02 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Ministry Restored

Ministry Restored

"I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten - the great locust and the young locust, the other locusts and the locust swarm - my great army that I sent among you."  (Joel 2:25)
Scripture Focus: Joel 2

When I returned to music ministry after a gap of three years, I was often reminded of the Lord's promise to His chosen people that He would repay them for the years the locusts had eaten. I wondered if He might do the same for me. In time I did come back to my music, to leading songs in church, and even to having a solo concert, realizing a new depth in my ministry. Now a powerful message of challenge, hope and comfort borne out of the reality of the darkest struggles was evident.

Re-read the last five words of Joel 2:25: "that I sent among you." Are you as struck by that phrase as I am? All along the locusts had been sent by God! Could it really be that my depression was sent by God as a tool in His reformation, re-shaping and restoration of my soul? Is there a trial - a valley of the shadow of death - that you are experiencing now? Consider God's providence for you. Be comforted and awed to know that it will be used not only for your good, but also for His glory.

Insight: The Crucible Is A Place Of Focused, Intense Heat; However, Without It, Purification By Removing The Dross Could Not Take Place.