Friday, April 24, 2015

Believing God

And he [Abram] believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.
(Genesis 15:6 KJV)

Charles Spurgeon stated: “I would recommend you either believe God up to the hilt, or else not to believe at all. Believe this book of God, every letter of it, or else reject it. There is no logical standing place between the two. Be satisfied with nothing less than a faith that swims in the deeps of divine revelation; a faith that paddles about the edge of the water is poor faith at best. It is little better than a dry-land faith, and is not good for much.” Clearly, Charles Spurgeon believed God.

A few years ago, in preparing to preach, I pondered what it means to believe God. Notice I did not say believe in God, nor am I writing in past tense—believing God is active and living (present active participle)—something that continues and does not stop. To believe God, is to believe Him in an active and on going way—present and future.

God expects our belief in Him to be active, not passive!

There is a difference, a huge difference; between believing in God and believing God…lets explore that difference.

What does it mean to believe God—to truly and completely believe what He says? What would we be able to accomplish if we truly believe God? In what areas of your life are you believing God?
Believing God is not for the faint of heart. It requires boldness! As the story of Abram indicates; we do not have to be perfect. God still is true to His Word to us—knowing that we can trust Him. 

Believing is stepping out in faith without knowing the final destination. Abram renamed Abraham did—an idol worshipper who became the father of all who have Jesus as Savior and Lord (the account of Abram’s call can be read in Genesis 12). 

To clarify, I am NOT talking about believing in God. Many people believe in God, yet they are not going to heaven when they die. In James 2:19, we read: “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” Simply believing in God does not say much, does it? Believing God is a deeper, bolder, life changing concept. It moves us out of comfort zones and keeping God in box and takes us to new places. Places we have never dreamed of—doing things we did not think were possible. According to Beth Moore in her study Believing God, there are five things we need to believe about God. Believing God is:

  1.       Believing God is He is who He says He is.
  2.       He can do what He says He can do.
  3.       I am who God says I am.
  4.       I can do all things through Christ.
  5.       God’s Word is alive and active in me.

Acting in faith is key. God will reward that, even if we get things wrong. All we need to do is look at the story of Abraham. He did not always get things right—such as leaving his family behind when God first called him. Due to that, he was delayed in Haran until his father Terah died. Later on he lied twice about his wife, Sarai, saying that she was his sister. He lied to protect his life—a moment of not trusting God to bring about the promise of becoming a great nation.  However, in Genesis 15:6 we read, “And he [Abram] believed the LORD and he counted it to him for righteousness.” We see this again in the New Testament (in multiple places) as a testimony to Abraham’s faith. 

Like Abraham, we may falter from time to time in believing God. However, to falter does not mean that God is done with us. Be assured that God is still at work in each of His children’s lives bringing His plan to fruition. However, God does not always protect us from the consequences of our faltering. In Abraham’s case, we are still experiencing the consequences of his decision to take matters into his own hands (the birth of Ishmael and the current conflict in the Middle East).

In closing, consider the following questions:

How is God asking me to believe Him this week?

In what ways can I take some steps of faith in getting to where God is calling me?

Please join with me in prayer:

Heavenly Father, thank You for the many examples in Your Word of what it means to believe You—not just believe in You. Empower us through the Holy Spirit to believe that You are who You say You are and that You have a special plan for each of our lives. Thank You for creating each one of us on purpose and for the plan that You have for each one of us. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

From My Heart to Yours,


To my readers: Be looking for additional posts in the future on the theme of believing God.  

Friday, April 17, 2015

Caring for God’s Creation

“The earth is the LORD’s, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.”  (Psalm 24:1 KJV)

From the opening verse of the Bible, Genesis 1:1, we see the creative power of God—“In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth”. God designed the earth for a purpose. Likewise, He created mankind to care for His creation—the whole of it.

Once sin entered into the picture (Genesis 3), the whole of God’s creation began to suffer as the result of mankind’s decision to live in a way that God had not planned. The beauty was marred. Creation has beauty but within that beauty lies danger too—danger from various elements, as well as animals.  

God expects us to care for the environment and the world He has given us. This is a sacred trust, in fact, Ecclesiastes 1:4 states: “One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.” 

We have only one planet…let us care for it! How are we doing at caring for our environment?  Are we helping or hurting it?

It would be so easy to take the easy way out and flippantly think: “Jesus is returning. Why should I do anything to help the environment?” While Jesus is indeed returning—likely soon—we still need to use care in what we do and how we do it. Creation is fragile; therefore, we need to handle it with care.  

We can do many things (such as recycling paper or plastic, or planting a tree, or walking instead of driving), that will make our world a cleaner, healthier place to live.

It was not all that long ago, during the Great Depression, that our parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and others learned to recycle/reuse/repurpose almost everything. They were on to something that many of us in this disposable culture have seemed to have forgotten: there is not an unlimited supply of resources, eventually things run out, disappear. We would be wise to use its resources with care.

Our world—the whole of creation—is crying out. Crying out in desperation for a change, for help—help that is found in Jesus Christ alone. The whole of creation groans as even it awaits the return of Jesus (see Romans 8:22 read here). Are we crying out as well?

Check out this article on The High Calling website for some ideas of how you can care for the environment: 5 Ways You Can Care for the Environment

Somewhere I read that we borrow the earth from our children; therefore, we should give to them an environment that is as healthy as possible. 

Take some time to soak in the beauty of God’s creation and praise and glorify Him for it! 

What can you do today or this week or this month to help the environment? 

What are you already doing to care for God’s wonderful, beautiful creation?

Please join with me in prayer:

God of Creation, thank You for Your beautiful and fragile world. We recognize many times we haven’t cared for it as carefully as we should and have taken its resources and beauty for granted; please forgive us. Grant us the wisdom to protect Your world and use its resources with care. In Jesus’ name. Amen. 

From My Heart to Yours,


Friday, April 10, 2015


“For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, the voice of the turtle [turtledove] is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her green figs; the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.”  (Song of Songs 2:11-13 KJV)

Spring is here (may be not fully, depending on where you live)! The winter is ended for this year. Cold days slowly give way to warmer days, along with spring rain showers and thunderstorms—storms that show God’s power.

Rains refresh the land in spring, similarly, each day we can receive refreshing spiritual “rain” through communing with the Holy Spirit.

A hint of spring is in the air. In some areas pollen can be seen floating in the air, covering everything in its path! Though spring may begin tentatively at first; suddenly, flowers burst out in spring time glory. Grass slowly turns from a dead brown to a lively green. Meanwhile, trees ever so slowly grow leaves that will provide shade on hot summer days.

Spring seems to be a time for renewal—renewal of creation and renewal in our daily lives. Many take time to do “spring cleaning”. Spring cleaning can be a literal cleaning of our physical environments; it can also be more metaphorical in the cleaning of our inner lives.

The potential of new life is waiting to spring forth from the ground.

Trees are budding—leaves beginning to appear, the grass is becoming green, birds are returning from wintering in the South. Flowers are beginning to appear, reminding us of the new life that is possible through Christ.

Soon we will see young animals beginning their lives. There is much beauty in watching nature come to life again; but there is much more joy and beauty in seeing the transformation that is possible when people accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. It is here that true, powerful transformation is seen.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior and Lord? If not, why not turn to Him today asking Him to forgive your sins and come into your heart and life? Please see my earlier posts: Salvation, A New Creation, and Counting the Cost.

Spring gives us hope that the long, cold days (mourning) of winter are over and the time of warmer days (joy) of spring are here. Likewise, Jesus gives us hope—hope for our lives here and now and hope for a glorious future for all eternity!

What are you looking forward to this spring?

How do you fresh yourself spiritually?

Please join with me in prayer:

God of Creation, thank You for the beauty of the spring with all of the new life springing forth.  Help us to stop and take in the beauty of Your creation that is all around us. Remind us of the new life that we have in You and that others can have as well. We thank and praise You for that new life. Grant us the courage and desire we need to share Jesus with others. In Jesus’ name.  Amen. 

From My Heart to Yours


Friday, April 3, 2015

Happy Easter—Christ is Risen!

And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.
(Matthew 28:5-7 KJV)

“Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia!" Listen here These majestic opening words to the wonderful Easter hymn by Charles Wesley captures the essence of Easter for Christians.  

The somber mood and darkness of Good Friday gives way to joy—great joy—when we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus three days later. A tragedy turns to triumph. Darkness turns to light. Death turns to life—ever lasting life.

Reflect on this:

Grief turns to joy…

Darkness turns to light…

What do you suppose it would have been like to have seen the empty tomb? Would we have understood any better than Jesus’ followers, what He told them about His coming death and resurrection? How would we have reacted to the empty tomb in our grief? Would we have recognized Jesus?

Like Mary and the other women and the disciples who grieved the death of their Teacher and Friend; our grief can turn to joy, when we fully realize that we serve a risen Savior and what it means. This is good news, indeed; news that we should share! The world needs to hear what we have to share. Yes, not everyone will want to hear—and yes we will face rejection and ridicule. However, if we keep in mind that it is Jesus who is being ridiculed and rejected, not us, our perspective can change.

It is not too late to receive Jesus as your Savior and Lord! He is ready and waiting for you to turn to Him with open arms! Be assured there are no age limits for salvation—a person cannot be too young or old. For more information, please refer to my previous posts: Salvation; A New Creation; Counting the Cost.

Take time this week to reflect on the hymn He Lives (listen here). Remember, we can face many things because He lives! If Jesus is not alive our faith and hope would be in vain! Jesus gave us victory over death and the grave! For those of us in Christ Jesus, we have a future to look forward to with great excitement!

Please join with me in prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your only Son to die in our place—to redeem us from our sins. It is with great joy, we exclaim, on Easter and every day, “HE IS RISEN”!!  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

From My Heart to Yours,


Happy Easter! May God Bless you richly today and everyday!