Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Talk Tuesday-Speak The Words of Life

What is your calling? What are your next steps in this journey of life? These are questions that should be prayerfully considered. If in the span of eternity, our earthly time is short, does what we do even matter?

The Apostles found themselves in a place of waiting. Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He told them to wait. “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. 5 For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit,” Acts 1:4-5. They asked Him if He was going to restore Israel at this time, to which He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth,” Acts 1:7-8. So they, and those with them, waited and prayed until the Day of Pentecost came when, “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them,” Acts 2:4. The Bible tells us that there were many God-fearing Jews staying in the town at that time, from many different linguistic areas. The onlookers were amazed at the fact that they heard these people praising God and declaring His wonders in the various different languages. Then Peter stood up and spoke the words of life. He started from the book of Joel, which explained the promised outpouring of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:17-21; Joel 2:28-32), to the Psalms (Psalm 16:8-11; 110:1) which foretold of the Messiah. Then he concluded with a stunning message:

 “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” Acts 2:38-39.

The Bible tells us that about three thousand were saved that day. We all have a testimony of how God saved us in the name of Jesus Christ, how He transformed us by the power of His Holy Spirit and how He took us through the valley unto the mountaintop. We have the ability to pray, read His Word, and edify others. In a world where darkness seems pervasive, be encouraged to speak the words of life! It will matter in eternity.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Talk Tuesday-What Is The Meaning of Life?

What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? Is everything indeed a chasing after the wind or is there more to our earthly journey than meets the eye? These are all questions that mankind has wrestled with for generations.

King Solomon ponders these questions in book of Ecclesiastes. He makes some poignant observations; “All things are wearisome, more than one can say. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing. What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 1:8-9. The unbridled pursuit of wealth and pleasure is assessed against the reality his own gain. He declares, “I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure,” Ecclesiastes 2:10; “Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun,” Ecclesiastes 2:11. He noted that, “Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless,” Ecclesiastes 5:10.

What then is his conclusion? “Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and years approach when you will say, I find no pleasure in them,” Ecclesiastes 12:1. He leaves us with sobering, sage advice, “Fear GOD and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For GOD will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil,” Ecclesiastes 12:13-14.

I heard a sermon on the radio about knowing GOD. The speaker (Charles Price), warned, “It is very possible to make ourselves the end and GOD the means. We are the means and GOD is the end.” We are here to be in relationship with GOD, to experience Him, to know Him, to love Him, to serve Him, and to anticipate eternity with Him. “14 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all,” 2 Corinthians 13:14. Be blessed!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Talk Tuesday-Watch and Pray!

We are living in perilous and uncertain times. For each generation that preceded this one, the days also seemed dark, filled with wars, rumours of wars, pestilence, diseases, and natural disasters. The message has always been the same-'watch and pray.' The Lord is calling us to observe the times and to act. We are to be set apart, to live as ambassadors of Christ, to share the Good News of the Gospel, to love the LORD with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love our neighbours as ourselves. His return is nearer today than it was yesterday and our ability to act lies in the constancy of our prayer.

When Jesus entered the Garden of Gethsemane, He asked his disciples to, “Sit here while I go over there and pray,” Matthew 26:36. He expected that while He was seeking the Father, they would do the same. The Bible tells us that when He returned, He found them sleeping. “'Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?' He asked Peter. 'Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak,'” Matthew 26:40-41. In Matthew 24 Jesus warns about His return to the earth. “36 But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40 Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left. 42 'Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.'” Matthew 24:36-42.

Be prepared, be willing and be ready. Heed the warning of our LORD and be vigilant. “15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16. Once again, 'Watch and Pray!'