Jesus Christ Needs You

Each of us are a unique blessing to this world. The Bible says we are unrepeatable, fearfully and wonderfully made. There aren’t even two sets of fingerprints alike, even among identical twins.

If we are so special, why do we let ourselves get caught up in daily drama and the so-called rat race? Aren’t we meant for more than a hum-drum life that doesn’t amount to anything?

The Bible says that you are God’s masterpiece and that you are fearfully and wonderfully made. The same creator of the universe created each of us. It wasn’t by some chance or some cosmic ‘oops’, but purposeful. You are here for a glorious reason. That reason, in a single word, is love.

Jesus loves you! All of your goods and bads, all of your wins and losses, all of you is loved completely. It’s so hard for us to forget that or to dismiss it, especially in the face of what goes on in this world.

This world is full of hard knocks, full of hate and disgust. That’s all the more reason why you must keep the love of Jesus Christ in your heart, so that it may be poured out upon this sick and sinful world.

This hurting world needs hope. It needs to know that the suffering is not for nothing. God ensures that nothing you go through will be wasted. God will use it all.

If you have gone through such things as drug or alcohol abuse, then you are specially equipped to be able to witness to someone about the dangers and evils of drugs or alcohol abuse. If you know what it’s like to be homeless, then you are well-abled to lift up the spirits of the homeless and to truly help them because you know that their needs are not just physical, but emotional and mental as well.

Do not let this life take you away from your true calling. When you look at yourself in the mirror, remember that God has a plan and that it involves you. You are meaningful. You are special. Nobody is equipped to do the things that God has in store for you. So don’t let an angry boss or a bad day in traffic steal away Christ’s message from your heart. That message needs to be spread to everyone.

The Bible tells about a time when Jesus was coming into Jerusalem. He needed transportation, so he sent his disciples to get a donkey from town. Jesus said to them, “If anyone asks, ‘Why are you untying that colt?’ just say, ‘The Lord has need of it.’” (Luke 19:31).

Jesus needs you and I to bring Him to our families, our businesses, our friendships, and our entire world.

You are called to share the love of Jesus Christ. When this world ties your soul down, away from it’s true calling, just look at yourself in the mirror and say, “The Lord has need of you.”

You are redeemed by His blood on the cross to share the love of Jesus Christ. That’s something we all have need of.

God’s blessings to you!

DH

Prayer and What It Can Do in My Life

Prayer is the most important thing you will ever do in your life. As children, we learn things by listening to our parents and asking clarifying questions. We see them and talk to them because we have a close, personal relationship with them.

We as children of the Most High God need to engage in a daily conversation with our Heavenly Father. Prayer is a dialogue where we bring our praise and petitions to our Father, but we spend time together with Him in a relationship. That relationship then fosters good, true, and righteous fruit in our lives.

There are a few things to remember about our prayer life:

First off, the Bible says we must seek the Lord. Frequently the Gospels say that Jesus prayed to his Father. How did He do it? Jesus would seek out a place that was appropriate for praying. Then, He dedicated a significant amount of time to that prayer. The Bible says that Jesus even climbed mountains in order to spend an entire night in prayer. That dialogue was so important to Him that He would go to great lengths to just be still with His Father.

“Jesus departed to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God.” (Luke 6:12) That is just one of many instances you’ll find in the Bible about Jesus being active in His prayer-life.

The second thing to remember is that the peace you have with God is no less than the amount of time spent with Him. No time with God equals no peace in your life.

When there was an important decision to be made, Jesus would spend hat much more time consulting His Father to know His will. He does not improvise, even though Jesus is God and knows all things. He spent time in prayer to show us the way we should take. Even when calling His twelve apostles which means ‘sent ones,’ He spent time praying deeply before doing so.

Let that be a comfort that when Jesus calls me to do a special mission for his Kingdom, He also ensures that it accords with the eternal plan of the Father.

Thirdly, the more time we spend with our Heavenly Father, the better conduits of His grace we can become.

The Bible says that having spent the night in prayer, Jesus prepared to give generously of Himself the following day. United to the Father, the power source of all good, Jesus’ actions channel this goodness towards those who are enslaved by evil or in need of healing.

Once again, in that Devine mystery, Jesus is God. He has that Godly power in Himself and in His own right. However, Jesus wants to give me an example of how to be a United to the Father. We are to be branches of the vine in order to produce fruit that will last.

By their fruits, you shall know them Jesus said. Are your fruits showing the world that you are a representative of Jesus Christ?

Today, if you are already a Christian, God wishes you to be with Him not just in Heaven, but in a daily walk. God loves you and only asks for your love in return. He asks for a relationship.

If you haven’t given your life to Jesus Christ, please do so. Through His blood shed upon the cross, we have been given the opportunity to live eternally with Him, no longer bound by the evil of this world. The Bible says that you have been made into a new creation. No longer a slave to pain and punishment. You have been made free. Accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and take hold of that freedom.

Come to God in prayer and see just what a solid relationship with Jesus Christ can do.

God’s blessings to you.

DH

Living Your Breakthrough Life

How long have you been waiting for your breakthrough? How many days, months, or years has it been since you first wished for something better?

The Bible is filled with people just like you who were just passing the time rather than truly living.

For instance, while away from his people who were slaves in Egypt, Moses made a simple life for himself as a shepherd. He had a wife and a son and lived by simple means.

Moses probably woke up the morning of the burning bush incident thinking it’s just another day in the desert. In fact, after that many years, he might have even been depressed and thought there’s no hope of a future. Perhaps saying something like, “This is the day that defines who I am and where I’m going to end up for the rest of my life.” Little did he realize that he would’ve been right.

That day changed Moses’ life forever. He had an encounter with God that pushed him into his calling. The future opened up to him because he connected with the Almighty. That day sent him on a path that would write his name in history. No longer the lowly shepherd, but now the leader of a nation.

So that’s one example, how about another? Take Gideon, the self proclaimed weakest person in the weakest tribe. As he was going about his chores for the day, an encounter with the angel of the Lord changed his path. That weakest person was called mighty by the Almighty and placed in charge of the Lord’s army. His victory was legendary.

You want more examples? How about Peter and his brother Andrew. James and John as well. All fishermen doing what they do, day in and day out. And then Jesus Christ walks by.

Matthew, a despised tax collector who probably lived every day of his life depressed. A known sinner that was commonly hated by his countrymen. But then Jesus calls his name.

So many other names, both Old and New Testament, share in those stories. Stories of simple, monotonous lives until God shows up in a big way.

What I’m saying is that all it takes is a little push by God’s big hand. That’s enough to thrust you into your breakthroughs in life.

If you feel like this is just another day and you’re in a low point in your life, please take heart. God is waiting for the right time in His plan. He’s watching you being faithful in the small things so that He can trust you with the big things, just like the Bible says.

Just another day like today could become THE day.

The Bible says that eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor has entered into the heart of man what God has prepared for those who love Him. Let that motivate you to stay faithful to God through Jesus Christ.

Jesus died for you on the cross so that you could live for God. Live in peace and in assurance that there is more to life than just what you see right now. No matter your circumstances right now, God has got something wonderful for you as long as you remain in faith.

Don’t lose heart. Remain faithful, putting your heart into everything you do, especially if it seems little or insignificant. Like the Bible says, let all you do be done as if it were done for God.

You don’t have to be great to do things with great love and faith. Do your best and do it with love for your Father in Heaven because He loves you. Today could be the day that He brings you into that breakthrough life He has promised. Stay faithful.

God’s blessings to you.

DH

When God Forgives But You Can’t Forgive Yourself

What sin can’t God forgive? In truth, He can do anything. He’s God. If you come to Him in repentance, He loves you and will take those sins away. Just as the prophet Isaiah says, the Lord will forgive and blot out your sins and he will remember the no more. You must give Him the chance to do it though.

The problem is that we often don’t forgive ourselves. We keep harboring those memories of sin and pain and the wrong that we have done even after God has blotted them out. Not to add more guilt to you, but you are in essence fighting against God at that point. He has forgotten your sin but you keep bringing them up.

Much like a nail in a board, the nail gets removed but the hole still remains. That’s the way our sin is. The sin is forgiven but there’s always some consequence of it even if that consequence is strictly your own guilt. With time, the Holy Spirit helps to fill in that hole.

So what if family or friends or others don’t let you forget about that sin? What if they don’t forgive you?

If they are Christians, they are commanded to forgive. Otherwise, they had better never pray the Lord‘s prayer again. “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Matthew 6:12.

Have you forgiven others? Have you held your forgiveness from anyone?

The Bible says that the devil is the accuser. If you have anyone, maybe in your own family or even fellow Christians, that accuse you and do not forgive you of your past sins, then that is by definition the work of the devil.

The point is that if you have repented and truly tried to change you mind and direction, then they must show forgiveness. They must show love. Just as the gospels say, how often should I forgive my brother? Perhaps seven times?

Jesus said don’t forgive just seven times, but 70 times 7. That doesn’t mean just 490 times, that is actually to stand for a number perfectly perfect, eternal.

We have been forgiven for so much more than what we could ever think of. We’ve been forgiven of the sins that we’ve asked forgiveness for, sins we’ve forgotten about, and even sins we didn’t know were sins.

Jesus paid it all on the cross. If we love Him and accept His sacrifice, we are forgiven. The Bible says peace comes from the Lord. Now you must allow yourself to experience that peace.

Know that Christ has forgiven you and let other know that too. We all need to hear it more often.

Start living for Him the best you can. Know that you are made righteous by God through Jesus Christ. You are forgiven, now forgive yourself. Go and do better knowing that you are fully loved and fully accepted by God.

God’s blessings to you.

DH

Whosoever

For years I felt disconnected from the Bible, as if it was good, but just didn’t speak to me personally. Sure, I believed in God, but I didn’t really understand what the big deal was. I didn’t get much out of church (if and when I actually went) and I just felt like I had more important things to do in my life.

Then, God pointed out to me the word “whosoever” in the Bible.

You’ll find the word whosoever used many times in the Bible. That word means everyone and includes you and I. Do yourself a huge favor. Cross out that word in your Bible and write your own name above it. When you do that, the Bible takes on a whole new meaning.

Salvation is for the many, but first it’s for the one. Being saved is personal. It’s for you and for us all.

“Whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13) See that whosoever there? Put your name there. [Your Name] calls upon the name of the Lord [and] shall be saved.” That’s right, you can be saved from all of your sin and all the bad things in your life.

Try some other places now. For instance, “Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” (1 John 4:15) If you personally confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God Himself will live in you and you I’m God. That statement is so fantastic just to think about God being with you constantly. The God who created all things loving you and empowering you to do wonderful works. His life force is for you and for your benefit if you simply call to Him and follow His Son Jesus.

Warning: This is only for people who really want peace and desire to do better in their lives. You see, that word whosoever is also placed as a reminder to stay on the right path. Just as in John 8:34, when Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever commits sin is the servant of sin.”

Is that you? Are you on that side of the whosoever? You don’t have to be.

You can be free of those sins. You can break the chains of that sin through the cross of Jesus Christ. You don’t have to be weighted down by the pain and guilt of sin any longer.

You can be a part of one of the most famous ‘whosoever’ in the Bible. John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Jesus paid the price in His own blood upon the cross. He paid the penalty for sin so you and I don’t have to. Believe in the Son of God and you shall be saved. Accept His payment for your sin and be free. Turn away from your old life; be loosed from it. Then you will find peace and blessing like you’ve never known before.

“For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.” – Luke 9:24

God’s blessings to you.

DH

Know the Will of God in Your Life

Many times in the scriptures we read about the Lord speaking to someone. The problem is that nowadays, we don’t much physically hear God speak to us. That really worries some people.

There are those people who say that until they physically hear God speaking to them, they won’t believe. Unfortunately, those type of people probably still wouldn’t believe even if God himself showed up in person and smacked them in the face.

On the other hand, there are other people that wish they could physically hear their Lord’s voice, but don’t. They long for that tangible interaction with their Savior, but they may never find it until they meet Him in Heaven.

I personally have never physically heard my Lord out loud in this big, booming “Moses” burining bush voice. I do, however, talk with Him often and He answers me plainly. Occasionally, I hear a still, quiet voice inside of myself and it leads me in a certain direction. Many times, I would not have entertained that particular direction in and of myself.

That’s the beauty of the Lord. If you truly leave yourself open to Him and His ways, you could end up accomplishing things you’d never thought possible.

Still, other times there are answers to my prayers and petitions that come in the form of solutions to problems. Solutions that were choreographed just too well. Things that were out of human control or comprehension.

The perfect example of this is our own twin daughters having an inescapable pre-natal problem that was resolved miraculously. I did not truly know what fervent prayer was until those weeks of angush and suffering. Our hope rested in Jesus and Him alone, because we didn’t have anything else.

It is a long story for another time, but I am overjoyed to say that Christ showed His miraculous self and we have beautiful children to stand as living embodiments of His grace and love. You may call it luck or coincidence, but I know that I heard my God as plain as day. I heard Him and saw His love.

The point I’m trying to make is that the more time you spend with our Lord, the closer you will be to Him. And the closer you are, the better you will distingush His answers to your questions. You will know His direction and you couldn’t help but take the path He chooses for you.

When you love someone, you try to know all you can about that person. You don’t just hear them speak, you listen to them. That’s a big measure of a Christian. You may not physically hear God’s voice, but you don’t have to. The more you spend time in His word and the more you pray, the easier it is to see and hear what He has to say. You will know when God is pulling you in a certain direction.

I hear people say, “How do I know that’s what God wants for my life?” You will know when God is answering your prayers or telling you to move in a certain direction with your life because of two things:

1. The direction will never go against God’s commandments.

2. The direction will be for the benefit of God’s people and not only yourself.

If you are confused about your life or not sure if God is speaking to you or not, spend time getting to know Him better. If you can’t find it in yourself to pray, then ask God to help you pray. Pray about praying. It sounds simple, but it’s true.

Next thing is to spend time connecting to God through His word. If you start your day with a “holy hour” with even just 15-20 minutes set aside for Jesus with no distractions, you will be better equipped to answer His voice when He calls. And trust that His plan for your life is better than anything you or I could ever come up with.

You can’t give a response to the Lord’s voice if you don’t know He’s talking to you. If you’re confused as to what God’s will is for your life, listen to Him. Truly listen. Spend time reading His word, meditating on it, and make yourself open to what He has in store for you.

You must be “IN” His Will before you can “DO” His will.

“My sheep listen to My voice; I know them, and they follow Me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them out of My hand.” – John 10:27-28

God’s blessings to you.

DH

Happy Easter

“There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” – Acts 4:12

Since it is Easter, we are reminded today more than most times of the year that Jesus was crucified and died for our sins. It was horrible for all who looked upon the face of the Jesus hanging there on the cross. It is where we get our word ‘excruciating.’

Many people at that time thought that it was the end of their hope of salvation, but Jesus rose again just a few days later. What started as a miracle birth could have been reduced to just campfire stories had Jesus not risen again after his fall.

That is what made all the difference. Jesus rose again after his death. This life that we know will pass away soon enough, but when we accept Jesus as our Savior and put our trust in Him, we are promised that we shall be raised again with Him. We no longer need to fear death, because our Lord has complete power over death and not the other way around.

Over the years, there’s been many people that have said their way was the answer to life, but they all died; all but one, Jesus. Jesus backed up every claim He made through fulfillment of scripture prophecies as well as the miracles He did. The biggest miracle of all was the empty tomb on Sunday, because in dying He destroyed our death, and in rising He restored our life.

I don’t need a dead savior. I can die on my own just fine, thanks. What I need is the risen savior. I need Jesus Christ.

You and I will fall to our sins, but the real tragedy would be if we didn’t rise again from it. Only one thing separates us from God and keeps us out of heaven and that is our sin. That is why our greatest need is to have our sins forgiven. Only then can we be reconciled to God and have the opportunity to be with Him for all eternity. The Bible says in Acts 4:12, “There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” Jesus is the ONLY way.

Happy Easter, my friends. It is not just the resurrection day of our Lord Jesus Christ, but it is the day of our resurrection as well. As He was raised, so shall we be raised with Him forever.

God’s blessings to you.

DH

A Christian Church In Action or Just Church Inaction?

Disclaimer: This sermon is going to come off a bit angry.

It is and I Am…

We had a historic freeze in Texas. The entire state was under a winter storm warning because of a large cloud formation dropping ice everywhere. Power went out in most of the state and water pipes were bursting everywhere. A state that never sees that sort of thing just isn’t prepared for such an event.

With that record cold came a record number of people without heat or water. The cities and counties scurried around to open warming centers. The Red Cross and a few other entities were at various places to assist, but there was just too many people who needed warmth, water, and food. I didn’t see an end to the people needing a warm place to be.

However, what I did see was a number of Christian churches with lights and power, but their doors were closed. Christians with the capability to keep potentially hundreds of people warm and out of the elements, but they were sealed up tight.

We were all under hard times, taking care of ourselves and our families as best as we could. And to be fair, maybe a few of the church goers were indeed helping out at soup kitchens or wherever, but what about the church leadership? The pastors and elders?

IT CUT ME TO MY HEART to see so many churches just in our area alone that had lights and power, but doors that were locked to people in need. You can preach Jesus all day long, but if you refuse to do all you can for those in need, then your words mean nothing. Those words are clanging cymbals according to the Bible in 1 Corinthians chapter 13, because your words show absolutely nothing of love. Those supposed “Christians” are only Christian in title, not in action.

You are saved by Jesus through faith in Him. But then, because of that faith, you should show fruits of that faith. The Bible says in James 2:26 “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.” There has to be something to show for the Holy Spirit living in your heart, otherwise how is being a Christian different from being anything else, pagan or other?

In short, if you believe in Jesus Christ, you should also take His words seriously when He says to help those in need and to serve others. If you call yourself a Christian, taking care of those in need is not optional.

It makes us feel good to hear about saints in this world like the late Mother Theresa that have done so much good for thousands of people. My question is, what are YOU doing? What exactly is the Christian church doing right now to help the physically poor and the spiritually poor? How about the widows and orphans and everyone in need?

Are you acting out the Jesus Christ in your heart or are you trying to smuggle Him into Heaven without anyone seeing?

If you hear the words, “Someone should really do something”, that someone is you! Yes, God can produce miracles out of nothing, but that’s not how He works. He wants His children to be His hands and feet, taking the love of Jesus Christ to all of those perishing in this world so that they may live forever and have a blessed and abundant life right now.

This is not to give you a warm and fuzzy feeling and it’s not to make people see how good of a person you are. It’s all about God and His glory. “Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16. I stress the part about “your good works.”

What are you doing?

You and I are to make God’s love alive and touch all people, not just those in our own denomination or neighborhood. Jesus said to go into ALL the world and be His witnesses. We have to preach the Good News that God loves all people, but if we can’t even open our doors and hearts to those suffering in the cold, then we need to get our priorities straight.

God first, everyone else second, and you last!

If being a Christian to you means dressing up and “playing Christian” on Sundays, then keep the doors shut. You are completely disrespecting our Heavenly Father and doing nothing in response to His love. Maybe because it’s just so inconvenient to our modern lives or maybe because nobody told us about the real Jesus Christ, only the fluffy happy Jesus who wants you rich and comfortable.

That’s not Jesus. Jesus died on a cross for our sins. We are now to die to ourselves and live for Him. No more of what we want, but what God’s children need. If that sounds a bit harsh, then tough.

Mount the cross, Christian! As the Master goes, so goes the servant. Jesus cared for the poor and healed the sick. He showed love, true Godly love. So what are YOU and your church doing?

As the scriptures say, zeal for my Father’s house has consumed me. May it consume you too.

God’s blessings to you.

DH

Is There a God?

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”- John 3:16

Do you know God? Do you even believe there is a God? Maybe you were once a believer because of your parents, but now you’re just not so sure?

The Bible says that the the heavens proclaim the glory of God and the skies display his craftsmanship. They speak without a word, but they make God’s presence known. You have to be willing to look rather than just give a passing glance.

This world is not an accident, just as an explosion in a junkyard wouldn’t accidentally make a jet plane. You can look at a building and know for certain there was a builder, even though you didn’t see it being built. And what about you? You are thinking with a brain and feeling emotions with a soul that was carefully and wonderfully made.

Need more proof? Have you ever seen the Disney movie Toy Story? The main characters find happiness and meaning in their lives through interactions with their owner, who cares about them so much that he (Andy) has written his name on the soles of their feet.

We have a Creator God who has written His name in our souls. We find meaning and happiness when we are interacting with God, because it is what our hearts long for. Like Saint Augustine said, our hearts are restless until they rest in the Lord. To put it into simple terms, we have a God sized hole that can only be filled by Him.

There has never been a culture or people found in the world, not even in the deepest parts of the jungle or desert, that doesn’t believe in some sort of higher power or deity. Our entire human race searches for its meaning outside of itself. We instinctively know that there is much more to life and existence than what we can find in and of ourselves.

So which is the right path? There are so many religions to choose from, and if I don’t like any of those, you can make up your own nowadays. However, even all of the world’s major religions are simply shadows of the real thing. At man’s best guess, all we can come up with is to do good, avoid evil, and seek the meaning to life and the afterlife.

What is good, or at least what is good enough? Man thinks he can work his way to Heaven. God says that only perfection gets in there and we are definitely not perfect. All of the major religions in the world say if you work hard enough and do enough good, things will be better someday. Maybe the next life or maybe a few more after that, you never know.

Unfortunately, there’s no way we can be good enough to work our way into a perfect afterlife, but there’s one thing that you need to know more than anything else. God loves you! He made you and He loves you just the way you just the way you are. He knows you can’t work enough or do enough good to earn Heaven. So God chose to bless and take care of His children just as any good father would. Although we deserve punishment for our bad choices, God said that He would pay the penalty.

God revealed Himself in the life and works of Jesus Christ. Born of a virgin, He lived the sinless life you and I can’t. But He still took the punishment and even the death upon the cross that you and I couldn’t. He did it so we could be forgiven of our debts, our sins. The punishment was paid in full so we could be set free of our evil and imperfections. Because of that, we can be allowed entry into Heaven for all of eternity. It is a free gift called grace. Just as any gift must be accepted, we must accept Jesus and His payment for our sins. Our God, our Creator, wants us to be with Him forever, but He won’t force it on us. It is a gift that can be accepted or rejected.

That in itself shows a mind and a plan to existence. Not because of random happenstance. Not because of us working our way to perfection, which would never happen. No. We are saved only because of Jesus Christ. Love: demonstrated.

God, our Creator, has a plan and it includes you because He loves you. Love is not some random accident, it’s purposeful. Love demonstrates a knowing and caring entity. That’s how I know there’s a God, because when I walk with Him and do His will, I feel His love and I’m able to share that love with others. God is love.

Is there a God? Undeniably, absolutely, YES!

God’s blessings to you!

DH