Tag Archive : CA

Daily Devotional - Freedom In Christ

Devotional Overview:

Is your spiritual life like a roller coaster, with far fewer ups than downs? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have no control? Do you experience more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success? Join Dr. Charles Stanley as he focuses on the freedom in Christ available to all believers and the truth that truly sets us free.

Key Scriptures:

  • Galatians 5:1
  • Genesis 2:17
  • Genesis 3
  • Romans 2:13

Devotional

Maximum Freedom

For years, I believed God was working against my personal freedom. I pictured Him as a divine Lawgiver who spent the majority of His time creating new ways to further restrict my liberty. Statements such as the one found in Galatians 5:1 made little sense to me: “It was for freedom that Christ set us free.” I would read them over and over and wonder why, if Christ came to set us free, I felt like such a slave.
Then one day when I was reading Genesis, a thought popped into my mind: Adam and Eve had only one rule (Gen. 2:17). Imagine living in a world where there was only one rule! The implications are astounding. Most significant, however, is the fact that in the perfect environment, where God had everything just the way He wanted it, He issued only one “thou shalt not.” To put it another way, God’s not a God of rules. Our God is a God of freedom. In the beginning, He placed the first man and woman in a beautiful garden and for all practical purposes said, “You’re free to enjoy yourselves.”

“So,” you may ask, “why all the moral and ethical taboos now?” The answer is found in Genesis 3. Our earliest ancestors did the very thing they were told not to do and so opened the door for sin to enter the world. And with sin came death. Thus, humanity became a slave to sin and death.
Whereas our world teaches that freedom is gained by throwing off all restraint, Scripture teaches us that the opposite is true. Human beings forfeited a great deal of freedom in an attempt to gain absolute freedom. As we begin to put two and two together, it becomes increasingly clear that freedom is gained and maintained by adherence to God’s laws. Just as a good father sets loving limitations for his children, so our heavenly Father sets moral and ethical perimeters for us.

Once again, the bottom line is trust. Can we trust God knows what’s best for us? Can we believe He really has our best interests in mind? Adam and Eve didn’t. And they lost the very freedom they were convinced their sin would ensure them. What about you? Are you willing to accept that God is a God of freedom—that His laws are for your protection, given to ensure and not hamper your freedom? If so, take a few moments to surrender to God the areas over which you’ve maintained control. Confess your lack of faith, then rest in the assurance God will grant you the maximum amount of freedom available in this sinful world.

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Daily Devotional - Freedom In Christ

Devotional Overview:

Is your spiritual life like a roller coaster, with far fewer ups than downs? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have no control? Do you experience more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success? Join Dr. Charles Stanley as he focuses on the freedom in Christ available to all believers and the truth that truly sets us free.

Key Scriptures:

  • John 8:32
  • John 8:34
  • 2 Timothy 2:26
  • Galatians 5:1

Devotional

Truth That Sets Us Free

Truth and freedom are constant companions. Where you find one, you will always find the other. Freedom in any area of life comes from discovering the truth about it. And discovering truth in a particular area always results in freedom of some kind.
It’s when a child accepts the truth that there’s nothing to be afraid of that she’s finally free from a fear of the dark. It’s only when a little boy accepts the truth that his father can and will catch him that he finds the freedom to leave the security of the diving board and jump into the pool. Likewise, it’s only as we accept the truth of all that Christ did for us at Calvary that we begin to enjoy the freedom He provided.

“The truth will set you free.” In six simple words, Jesus outlines the process by which any man, woman, or child can gain freedom in this life. Freedom is not gained through having our way or doing as we please. On the contrary, prisons are full of men and women who simply did as they pleased. These people certainly didn’t gain freedom; they forfeited their freedom. And so it is with us every time we carelessly strike out on our own to do our own thing. What results isn’t freedom—it’s bondage.
If I were to ask you whether or not you’re free, you may be tempted to answer yes without giving it much thought. But let me ask you this: Are you constantly battling with fear, lust, jealousy, hatred, bitterness, conceit, deceitfulness, a lack of faith, or discouragement? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have little or no control? Are there certain environments and people you avoid because of an insecurity you cannot overcome? If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, then you are not free. You don’t have to be imprisoned to find yourself in handcuffs or behind bars. Sin has a way of entrapping each of us, keeping us in bondage that the Lord never intended for us. It is through Christ’s death on the cross where He defeated sin and death once and for all that our true freedom can be found. And when we accept Christ as our Savior, the chains that had us bound are broken, and God’s freedom truly sets us free (Gal. 5:1).

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Daily Devotional - Freedom In Christ

Devotional Overview:

Is your spiritual life like a roller coaster, with far fewer ups than downs? Are there habits in your life over which you seem to have no control? Do you experience more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success? Join Dr. Charles Stanley as he focuses on the freedom in Christ available to all believers and the truth that truly sets us free.

Key Scriptures:

  • John 8:32

Devotional

The Freedom Jesus Promises

For years, my spiritual life was like a roller coaster, up and down—with far fewer ups than downs. There were times when I experienced more anxiety than peace, more fear than faith, and more failure than success. I’m sure you can relate.
Was I saved? Yes! Was I free? No. For all practical purposes, my new-birth experience had not set me free. I knew the Lord’s pardon, but not His freedom. Old habits still harassed me. Twisted emotions still paralyzed me. The power of sin attempted to defeat me. I longed for the freedom Jesus promised, but for some reason, it eluded my grasp.

My problem was not one of desire. I wished with all my heart to please God. But there were times I felt as if I was fighting a losing battle.
Eventually, it dawned on me that I was in bondage; I was a prisoner. It was in the early morning hours, after crying out to the Lord throughout the night, that I suddenly realized I must relinquish to Him control of my entire life.

With a deep longing in my heart, I began to search the Bible with one objective: to know the joy of real freedom in Christ—freedom to become the person God intended me to be. And I found it. Jesus unlocked the door to my prison cell with six simple words: “The truth will set you free” (John 8:32).
With this promise in my heart, I began applying to my life the principles of true freedom that I was learning about in God’s Word. In doing so, I experienced a freedom that transformed my life. Now I want to share these same truths with you. It’s my prayer that as you read through the days that follow, these devotionals will expose areas of bondage in your life, and more importantly, that God’s truth will set you free.

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Daily Devotional: Chasing Failure

Devotional Overview:

Answer this question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail? Would you write a book? Would you start your own business? Would you go back to school? Would you get married? We all have something we’d love to do, but often, our fear of failure outweighs the potential of our destiny. But what if you found out that failure could actually help you succeed?

Key Scriptures:

  • Joshua 1:9

Devotional

“The Best Command Ever”

Hearing that you should be strong and courageous is a lofty notion. It’s a pretty idea. It’s something nice to hear. But God changes the game and changes the tone of this concept in verse 9 of Joshua 1. He says, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.”

Command?

So God, let me get this straight… Up there with, ‘Do not steal. Do not kill. Do not murder’… You’re COMMANDING that I be strong and courageous?

I always thought this verse was a suggestion. It’s one of those verses you see on bathroom walls in church, not a verse you see right below the 10 commandments. God is so adamant on us being strong and courageous that He made it a command. God is so invested on us getting over our fears and insecurities that He doesn’t just command strength and bravery, but he backs up us His command with His attendance in our lives. He can command us to be courageous because He’s the insurance policy on our success. God is not encouraging us to be strong because we’re great, but because He’s great.

So here’s some really good news: there’s never been a better command for you to follow. Most commands feel like things you can’t do. This is a command that frees you up to do more than you’ve ever done in your life.

I did try out for an NBA team, and I did indeed fail. But I realized something in Phoenix as I was running up and down the court feeling absolutely embarrassed. In the midst of failing to make an NBA team, I kept running pass the Phoenix Suns logo and I asked myself, “How did you get here?” There were many places I could have been on that Monday afternoon, but I was playing on an NBA practice court. And I realized that chasing failure took me further than chasing success ever did.

God wanted me to have something better than my name on the back of an NBA jersey. He wanted me to have a life free from fear. Since that tryout, my life has drastically changed because I’m just not afraid to fail anymore.

The reality for you and I is that when it comes to strength and bravery, it’s not a suggestion… it’s a command. You don’t have any other choice but to live your life courageous.

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Sunday, June 24, 2018 Sermon:

How to be made whole

Luke 17: 12-19 (KJV)

  • And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off:
  • And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.
  • And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go show yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.
  • And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God,
  • And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. 17 And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?

18 There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. 19 And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.

Leper:

Outcast from family and society

Nothing to look forward to

No invitations to parties or weddings etc

No physical touch allowed

All of them facing death

Outer decay falls off first like the nose or the ear or the fingers and toes, then arm and leg Whole: complete, perfect, entire and not lacking any parts.

  1. Thank God for who He is not just what he has done. Vs 15 One of the guys turned around and glorified God for who He was.

He wasn't glorifying God for what He did but for who He was! That's called Leprosy worship.

He didn't thank God because his leprosy was cleansed but because of who God is.

Sometimes we are wondering why my answer hasn't come yet, why we are not healed yet. We need to Thank Him anyway not for what He can do for us but for who He is.

  1. "Go show yourself to the priest" Jesus told them. We need to get into the house of God, that is where the answer is. Counseling won't do it, but the house of God will.

As they went, they were cleansed. 9 of them went on home to show everyone they were cleansed now and could come back into society, but they were not made whole. They still had the effects of the leprosy on their body. It didn't spread, they had no more pain, they were clean and all that was exciting, so they went home to show family.

The 1 who came back and thanked Jesus was made whole! His finger was back on, his nose, his ear, and whatever had been missing, he was now complete and made whole.

Some of you have been through a crazy life, and the devil wants you to look like and smell like all the trials you have been through, but some of you don't look like what you have been through. You've started hanging around church and worshipping and thanking God and you don't look the same as the effects of the crazy life, you have been made whole, lacking no parts.

You don't get good to get God, You get God to get good!

Psalm 23 (TPT)

I The Lord is my best friend and my shepherd.

I always have more than enough.

  • He offers a resting place for me in his luxurious love.

His tracks take me to an oasis of peace, the quiet brook of bliss.

  • That's where he restores and revives my life. He opens before me pathways to God's pleasure and leads me along in his footsteps of righteousness so that I can bring honor to his name.
  • Lord, even when your path takes me through the valley of deepest darkness, fear will never conquer me, for you already have!

You remain close to me and lead me through it all the way.

Your authority is my strength and my peace.

The comfort of your love takes away my fear. I'll never be lonely, for you are near.

  • You become my delicious feast even when my enemies dare to fight.

You anoint me with the fragrance of your Holy Spirit; you give me all I can drink of you until my heart overflows.

  • So why would I fear the future?

For your goodness and love pursue me all the days of my life.

Then afterward, when my life is through,

I'll return to your glorious presence to be forever with you!

Joel 2:25 (AMPC)

25 And I will restore or replace for you the years that the locust has eaten

Daily Devotional: Chasing Failure

Devotional Overview:

Answer this question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail? Would you write a book? Would you start your own business? Would you go back to school? Would you get married? We all have something we’d love to do, but often, our fear of failure outweighs the potential of our destiny. But what if you found out that failure could actually help you succeed?

Key Scriptures:

  • Joshua 1:8
  • 1 Peter 1:3-4

Devotional

“Somebody’s Waiting On You”

There are so many people in this world looking for success, but the common denominator amongst all successful people is that they failed. So I decided to chase failure by looking for an NBA team that would give me a tryout. I was 99% sure that I would fail, and I was looking forward to it. I knew God had something for me on the journey and I couldn’t miss it.

I had a million excuses as to why I shouldn’t even try, but I had one reason that outweighed my excuses: God told me to do it. Our excuses serve as legitimate reasons why we delay our destiny, but God’s word serves as a legitimate reason to overcome. It’s like God packs inside of each of us a unique gift and plan, and then we spend decades wrestling with excuses why we think He’s wrong. We think other people are a better fit to do the thing God created us to do. But God has already given us everything we need to be who He’s called us to be.

So what are you waiting for? You may have the answer to that question. But here’s a better question you may never know the answer to: Who’s waiting on you?

While you make up your mind about if you have enough in the tank to become who you dream of being, there’s a life out there waiting to meet you. There’s a single mother who needs your blog. There’s an insecure student who needs your new clothing line. There’s a lost person who needs you to speak up at your job.

And there were thousands of people waiting on me to try out for an NBA team to give them permission to be who they wanted to be and I didn’t know it until I tried. I reached out to a few NBA teams to see if they’d let me chase failure, and sure enough, the Phoenix Suns, unbelievably, said yes. I would have never gotten a once-in-a-lifetime experience if I didn’t stop being afraid to fail. It’s amazing what can happen in your life when you believe God’s word, and stop being scared.

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Daily Devotional: Chasing Failure

Devotional Overview:

Answer this question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail? Would you write a book? Would you start your own business? Would you go back to school? Would you get married? We all have something we’d love to do, but often, our fear of failure outweighs the potential of our destiny. But what if you found out that failure could actually help you succeed?

Key Scriptures:

  • Joshua 1:5-7
  • Psalms 27:14

Devotional

“God’s On Repeat”

We all know there are things in our lives that we could do more of. We all can eat better, save more, work out more, pray more, and read our Bibles more. But it doesn’t mean we have the strong desire to change. Inevitably, we start to eat better, save more, work out more, pray more, and read our Bibles more to the point that we feel like we’ve eaten healthy enough, saved enough, worked out enough, prayed enough, and read enough to hit cruise control in those areas of our life. In fact, when we are encouraged to do any of the above, it can often go in one ear and out of the other. We feel like we have time to get better later. We have great intentions of improving our lives in a few months when our circumstances are comfortable enough for change.

I recently lost a friend to stage 4 cancer, and at her memorial service her husband had the courage to get up and share some lessons he had learned from his wife who had just passed away 5 days prior. She was a person who gave her best to every single day she lived. She inspired many. And I walked away from that funeral with this encouragement: Become today who you intend to be tomorrow. The bridge between who you are and who you want to become is simply courage. At some point you’ve just got to wake up and make a decision to get over the pile of excuses you’ve built up in your head for not being the person you really want to be.

In Joshua 1, Moses has just passed away and now it’s time for Joshua to fill some pretty large shoes. And God tells him something he’s already heard THREE times in Deutoronomy: Be strong and be Courageous. And now God is telling him the same thing another two times. Again this isn’t our mother telling us to clean our room over and over again. This is God. He only has to speak once and it should be enough to move us. But strength and bravery were so high on God’s list that he wanted to make sure that Joshua understood the concept that by the time we get through the first nine verses of the first chapter, Joshua will have heard the same encouragement SIX times.

What’s God been repeatedly saying to you over and over that you’ve yet to act on?

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Daily Devotional: Chasing Failure

Devotional Overview:

Answer this question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail? Would you write a book? Would you start your own business? Would you go back to school? Would you get married? We all have something we’d love to do, but often, our fear of failure outweighs the potential of our destiny. But what if you found out that failure could actually help you succeed?

Key Scriptures:

  • Deuteronomy 31:23
  • Genesis 18:12
  • 1 Corinthians 16:13-14

 

Devotional:

“Stop Laughing”

“What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?”

When I answered that question, I said, “Well I’d be in the NBA.” And then I laughed. I was an All-American basketball player in college almost 9 years ago. I’m very good at basketball, but NBA players are doing what only .00014 people in America get to do. I would say 95% of all 450 NBA players are taller, faster, and stronger than I am. So I had a lot of reasons to laugh at myself when even thinking about trying to be in the NBA.

But God wasn’t laughing. I didn’t get the idea that God wanted me to be in the NBA, but I got an overwhelming feeling that God wanted me to try. God wanted me to live without fear and for me to do that, I needed to face my biggest one: the fear of failure.

It’s one thing to have your mom encourage you to chase your dream. She’s supposed to do that. But when God encourages you to do something, that should invigorate all of us because if the ruler of the heavens and the earth puts his stamp of approval on who you are and what you do, that’s a pretty good indicator that you should go in that direction. He knows the beginning and the end; so He must be seeing something in your future that he doesn’t want you to miss.

Moses told Joshua to be strong and courageous. And that’s an amazing moment in history. But when God comes off the throne and tells Joshua to be strong and courageous, it just takes everything to the next level. And God not only tells him to be strong and courageous, but He also lets him know that He’ll be with him wherever he goes.

Here’s a new question: What would you do if you knew God was with you wherever you go?

However you answer the above, don’t laugh at it. There’s nothing too hard for God.

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Daily Devotional: Chasing Failure

Devotional Overview:

Answer this question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail? Would you write a book? Would you start your own business? Would you go back to school? Would you get married? We all have something we’d love to do, but often, our fear of failure outweighs the potential of our destiny. But what if you found out that failure could actually help you succeed?

Key Scriptures:

  • Deuteronomy 31:6-8
  • 1 Timothy 1:6-7
  • Romans 8:31

 

Devotional

“What would you do if you knew you could not fail?”

Answer this question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

Would you write a book? Would you produce music? Would you start your own business? Would you go back to school? Would you get married? Would you lose weight? We all have something we’d love to do or someone we’d love become, but often, the greatest fear we face is the fear of failure. The notion that we could fall flat our faces often outweighs the potential outcome of our God-given destiny. But what if you found out that failure could actually help you succeed?

Deutoronomy 31 captures a moment in history that should encourage every person who’s ever had a big dream. Joshua is about to succeed Moses, which is not something many men would want to sign up for. It would be the equivalent of becoming the President of the United States in the midst of war. Moses knew his time was up and it was time to pass the baton to a worthy man of God. On behalf of God, Moses tells all the people to be strong and courageous, but then Moses pulls Joshua in close for a special message in front of everybody. The camera zooms in tight on Moses and Joshua and everyone began waiting on what words Moses will give to his successor.

Moses tells Joshua the same thing God told his people: Be strong. And be courageous.

Whatever you’ve been afraid to do and whoever you’ve been afraid to become, God wants to encourage you today to be strong and to be courageous. The person God wants you to become is a person that isn’t afraid of anything regardless of the outcomes of your dreams.

[Content Provided By Bible.com]

Sermon Notes: Gates

Numbers 35: 15 (AMP)

15 These six cities shall be a refuge for the Israelites and for the stranger and the resident alien among them; so that anyone who kills a person unintentionally may escape there,

A city of refuge had gates

A city of refuge was a place where somebody could flee to for safety. You see, the law in Israel stated that if you killed somebody in wartime, or if you unintentionally killed somebody (not for cases of pre-meditated murder) that the family of the dead person could avenge the blood of their relative without any legal action being taken against them. If the person who committed the "manslaughter" could get inside the city of refuge, then he would be granted safety and refuge as long as he remained in the city; but if he was to leave the city at any time, he was fair game for the revengers of blood. These cities of refuge had gates on them that were always unlocked 24/7. They could go there at any time!

Joab and Abishai had a brother named Asahel that was killed by Abner during a battle. Naturally, Joab and Abishai had never forgotten what Abner did to their brother, and even though the act was committed during a time of war, they wanted Abner to pay for their brother's death. The problem was, however, that they had to get him outside the gates of the city. Notice our text tells us that Joab pulls him aside, in the gate, to speak with him quietly (privately). But why would Abner willingly leave the protection of the city in order to speak with a man that wanted him dead? Because Joab had deceived him into thinking that he meant no harm. As soon as he gets him outside, however, he kills him.

Now let's make application. The city of refuge is a picture of being "in Christ"; and Joab is a picture of the devil. The devil cannot touch us directly as long as we are inside the walls of being "in Christ", so what he does is try to lure us out of the city so that he can kill our ministry for the Lord. The moral to the story is: stay inside the city, Stay "in Christ". Don't stray from God's perfect Wilf for your life. Don't let Satan convince you that life will be better outside of the walls of the city. Stay in the Word of God; stay in church; stay doing what God told you to do. Stay in the City!

Abner should of said n come in here". Once you get in Christ, STAY IN! Acts 16:31: I will be saved and my House! Everything's here in Christ: forgiveness, restoration, healing, peace, Jove, needs met.

Hell has gates - if people go to hell, they chose to go. Matthew

Matthew 16:18 (MSG)

Jesus came back, "God bless you, Simon, son of Jonah! You didn't get that answer out of books or from teachers. My Father in heaven, God himself, let you in on this secret of who t really am. And now I'm going to tell you who you are, really are. You are Peter, a rock. This is the rock on which I will put together my church, a church so expansive with energy that not even the gates of hen will be able to keep it out,

(AMP)

I will build My church, and the gates of Hades (the powers of the infernal region) shall not overpower it [or be strong to its detriment or hold out against it].

Heaven has gates

Revelation 21:21 (AMP)

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each separate gaté was of one single pearl. And the steet (broad way) of the city was pure gold, like transparent crystal.

His presence has gates

Psalm 100:4 (AMP)

Enter His gates with a song ofthanksgiving And His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, bless and praise His name.

Samson pulled gates out

Judges 16:3 (NKJV)

3 And Samson lay low till midnight; then he arose at midnight, took hold of the doors of the gate of the city and the two gateposts, pulled them up, bar and all, put them on his shoulders, and carried them to the top of the hill that faces Hebron.

He put a wall in the place of the gates saying: "I am staying here, never to leave, not going back to what I used to be and to the old crowd!"

31 times in the New Testament it says we are "IN CHRIST".

Remove the gate and don't go back to what you used to be. Stay IN CHRIST!

Isaiah 60: 18 (AMP)

"Violence will not be heard again in your land, Nor devastation or destruction within your borders; But you will cal} your walls Salvation, and your gates Praise [to God].