I Am Not Alone – Neither Are You!

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When we are at our lowest, God promises to be there. In the 23rd Psalm, David says,

“Tho I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff they protect me.”

The song that is included in this post was written by a man acquainted with the valley of the shadow of death but not his own – His wife and little unborn child. Tommy Dorsey was leading the music at a revival south of his hometown Chicago when he got the telegram that his wife had died in childbirth.

He got home as soon as he could, only to find that the child had died as well. It broke Tommy in ways that few can get their arms wrapped around. He told everyone that he was walking away from God and leaving gospel music forever.

A few weeks later a friend came to visit him. He was worried about his grieving friend. So he went in and convinced him to take a drive with him. His friend was a Christian but he knew better than to begin preaching at Tommy. So he took him to a school and they walked into the music room. His friend walked over to the piano, Tommy Dorsey’s long time companion in writing literally thousands of gospel tunes. Tommy followed him and sat down on the piano bench.

He began to cry almost instantly. He opened the cover and began to play the tune that this post began with. He later recalled that it was like the Holy Spirit came to him in that moment and poured that song into him.

When we are in the valley of pain and loss, we can be assured that God knows it and is coming to lead us through it. If you are in the pit today know that you are not alone – God is there with you. Call out to Him and I know there are tears and pain now but He promises to wipe away all those tears. Listen and enjoy this next song and let it encourage you as well.

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GOD’S MASTERPIECE: A SHOUT OUT TO THE GODLY MOM’S!

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caring-mom

HAPPY MOTHERS DAY! Somehow that sentiment doesn’t seem to be strong enough for how I feel about Mom’s. How about this – You Are God’s MVP’s and may He bless you richly with every spiritual blessing – AKA – Pour Out All That Heaven Has.

We all know the story of Mary, the mother of Jesus and the very real challenges she dealt with and walked through but what many of us may have missed is that her faithfulness is not an isolated incident. The Bible is full of Mom’s that did incredible jobs.

As we study the Old Testament, it becomes readily apparent that Godly Mom’s make a blog picture - living breaddifference in the lives of many. Here is an example that is repeated in Scripture –

“Jotham was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. HIS MOTHER’S NAME ALSO WAS JERUSHAH, THE DAUGHTER OF ZADOCK.” 2 Chronicles 27:1 (emphasis is mine)

In this male dominated society why was Mom mentioned here? It is a repeated theme throughout the Chronicles. WHY? I know the Mom’s that are reading this are screaming the answer right now but just bear with me, I am getting to the point – I promise.

This King was noted that,

“… he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord…” vs.2 154567026_6d96a13b5d_z

There is another example where a king had another Mom and things didn’t go so well.

“But when Athaliah, the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal seed of the house of Judah.” 2 Chronicle 22:10

SO what was the difference? Athaliah was the daughter of evil King Omri by way of Ahab and Jezebel. But the first Mom was the daughter of the chief priest – Zadock. One lived in Jerusalem and served God and the other came from a place that openly worshipped idols.

So Mom’s, your godly influence, the life you lead and the things you teach your children truly matter. They make a difference beyond what you could ever consider. King Jotham built up his city, won battles and made the country better than it was even under his fathers reign. His Mom made a difference in his life and therefore over 1 million people were directly impacted in a positive way. That is amazing –

YOU AREmom-care-02-pg-full AMAZING!

I am not saying that there won’t be some very dark times in the lives of your children. There are some, like me, that will make very poor choices along the way, but that godly example will be remembered and it will serve as a light house to guide us back home.

Some of you Mom’s and Dad’s may be saying that you have really messed things up. Trust me, I understand. My advice to you is that it is never too late to become the person God intended you to be. God can do more with your humble surrender, even late in life, than you think possible. I am telling you that it is not too late to make a difference in the life of your children, even if they are now adults. In fact, your transformation can be the thing that gives your family the hope they need to reunite and turn to God themselves.prayertime

This is something that has been on my heart for a while and I wanted to share it. So Godly Mom’s out there –

Let’s raise the roof with praise!

You are God’s Masterpiece(Ephesians 2:10), uniquely created to do a job that changes the world and helps us to see the beauty in the midst of a world full of ugliness, pain and depression. You are more important than any single day can commemorate. We love you more than words can say.  

Praise Him!

Cliff Robertson, Jr.

Guardian Angels – Are They Real?

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Do we really have “Guardian Angels”? Are they biblical? And if they are real, what exactly do they do? The Bible talks a great deal about angels and some of their activities. What inspired me to write about this topic is one of my favorite passages in the Bible – – Psalm 34:7

Someone Does Watch Over You!

Someone Does Watch Over You!

“The angel of the Lord encamps about around those that fear Him, and he delivers them.” NIV

So what does that mean? Well, if we put it into context with King Hezekiah, it’s pretty startling. He was having to deal with overwhelming odds. The King of Assyria had come with an army that had steamrolled the rest of the surrounding nations. They had in fact taken the Northern Territory of Israel into captivity. Hezekiah had no human army that could match this huge opposing force. So he did what all men of God should first – He prayed. But he didn’t pray by himself – he went to the prophet Isaiah and they prayed to God. God sent a message to the King by way of His prophet that basically said – I got this!

That next morning, 185,000 Assyrian soldiers were slaughtered by none other than – THE ANGEL OF THE LORD!

That is the kind of power you have with you. Not only does He promise you to have your back, God makes a special reference to our children – Jesus tells us,

among us“Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in Heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father.” Matthew 18:10 KJV

I know for you parents out there, this is a special passage to you. I know that it is to me.

The Bible also tells us that –

“[Referring to angels] Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minster to those who shall be heirs of salvation?” Hebrew 1:14 KJV

SO they are indeed our guardians. One last thing, while all these beautiful pictures show angels with wings and flowing garments, that may not always be the case –

“Be not forgetful to entertain strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unaware.”     Hebrews 13:2

So your angel may be your friend next door that you have to help out all the time or the beggar on the street that always looks you right in the eye. You know there is something about that person …. that’s different. He may have been sent by God to test and strengthen you in your walk through service to others. There is a song that speaks of one who says – “I’ll be the angel by your side….” Maybe we need to serve others like that was our primary mission in life – just like it is for our guardians.

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He Knows Your Name!

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I love this song. What inspired this post was my morning Bible Study where I am beginning in the book of Ezra and God, speaking through the prophet called out Cyrus by name to deliver the people of Judah and rebuild the temple is Jerusalem. This Kings name was foretold in the book of Isaiah over 150 years before this man was ever born.

God knows your name and cares deeply for you. He sent His Son to bring us salvation. He gives us grace for daily living through the power of His Holy Spirit. This gives us the privilege to be called sons and daughters of the Most High! Matthew West has a video that helps put this into perspective as well.

 

Hello My Name is by Matthew West

Let me ask you a question –

book_of_life111111There will be some that Jesus will have to say to –

“… I never knew you, depart from me…” Matthew 7:23

For a long time I would have told you that I was saved and I even did very religious and churchy things. Yet, it was an act. I had no hunger for His word. I lived like hell Monday through Saturday and put a mask on for Sunday. I may have fooled the people around me but I didn’t fool God. Then one day my choices brought me down to the lowest point I could ever imagine. I wanted to die – I wanted out but it took that for me to realize that I needed a Savior that was real and I turned my life over to Him.

Since that moment, a very real transformation has begun. I am not where I need to be but glory be to God I am not the man I use to be. I know the risen Christ and my name is written in His Book of Life – Is yours? If it is, great!!! I shout, “Praise God” and I know that I will see you one day in glory. For those of you who are unsure, you don’t have to be any longer. Ask Jesus to come into your life and heart today. Just say –

“Jesus Christ, I know I need You, come into my heart, forgive me of my sin and help me to become the child of God you have called me to be.”

If you truly believe and place your trust in Jesus your name is now written in the Book of Life and the Holy Spirit has sealed you! Now get involved in a good Bible teaching and Holy Spirit filled church in your area. Share your decision with the Pastor and be baptized. Then share your new found faith with those that you love. Some won’t accept it but there will those who do. And maybe one of those you share it with, will give their hearts to Christ as well! The Angels in heaven are already warming up for their shouts of victory that one more person has given their hearts to Christ.

 

What Are You Building For – Eternity or Now?

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christ on the rock

We have choices each day and they matter greatly. When we choose the God-Centered path our lives are building for eternity. When we go off on our own, what we are building will never last.

I was reading a 2 Chronicles 36 today and it is the tragic story of the fall of Jerusalem after King Josiah went out to fight against Egypt when he was supposed to stay home – was told to stay home. This king did some great things but he got off track. When he got off track it cost him his life but that is only part of the story. The rest of the story was  that Egypt took control of his country, then Babylon. Israel ceased to be a nation – millions died and almost all of the others went to prison (i.e. captivity).

Here is my question – Could the outcome have been different had he made a different decision? I believe the answer is yes. When he turned to God and did all that he did to restore his nation to the God of their fathers, a prophetess told him that because he did that he had stayed the countries destruction.

So with that being said, let’s look out our decisions. Is there something we can begin to do differently that would be Christ centered and eternity building? There are many thing in our lives that are self-centered or maybe something that is inherently good, but it is simply isn’t what we are called to do.

So my challenge for you today, just like it was for my discipleship class I teach on Sundays – Pray this little prayer –kneel

“Lord, open my heart to what you would have for me today. Lead me, guide me, direct me, protect and correct me as I go through this day, for I long to be the Man/Woman of God that You have called me to be. AMEN”

Look out, because God will answer this prayer. But I want you to take this one step further – I want you to live in expectation that God is going to answer this prayer. Get excited about your future with Him because the plans He has for those that seek Him are beyond anything you or I could ever imagine or plan for or …… He knows what our gifts and talents are because He is the One who created us and gifted us.

One last thought – our failure to heed the word of God, can also have disastrous results. Josiah loved the Lord but didn’t listen when it mattered most. It cost his country a great leader and the men that took over after he was gone, drove it into destruction. What if your actions or inactions could have a similar result? What would you be willing to do differently now that you know that all of it really matters. I am challenged by this fact daily. I don’t get it right all the time either but I am seeking Him and He tells us when we seek Him, we will find Him. When we have found Him, we have all the answers we need – Jesus Christ! AMEN!

Praise Him!

Cliff Robertson, Jr.

Luke 22:42 (Not My Will)

Can you even begin to imagine what that would have been like? What He did for us, is beyond words because He knew we would reject Him, walk away from Him, use His name for purposes that no name should ever be used. Yet, even after all that, He was able to say, “Not my will Father, but thine be done…” Thank You Jesus …. for everything.

THE RIVER WALK

Not My Will

Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine. (Luke 22:42)

Read: Judges 4:1 – 5:31, Luke 22:35-53, Psalm 94:1-23, Proverbs 14:3-4

Relate: Jesus did not want to die. Did you ever think about that? In each of the Synoptics, we see Him asking the Father to spare Him from what was coming ahead. Matthew quotes Him: “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me.” Mark is the most passionate, ” ‘Abba, Father,’ he cried out, ‘everything is possible for you. Please take this cup of suffering away from me.’ ” Then here in Luke we read, “Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me.”

There are some views of Jesus that don’t really align well with this verse. According to…

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LUKE 22:32 (Make A Comeback)

Sometimes a setback is merely a setup for a comeback. So if you have fallen, God has made a way for your return. Come back and find arms wide open

THE RIVER WALK

comeback

“But I have pleaded in prayer for you, Simon, that your faith should not fail. So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:32 NLT)

Read:Judges 2:10-23, Judges 3, Luke 22:14-34, Psalms 92, Psalms 93:1-5, Proverbs 14:1-2

Relate:  When we make big mistakes, there is a small voice in the back of our heads telling us, “you can’t comeback from this one.” I wonder if this thought crossed Peter’s mind when he heard the rooster crow. He had been so certain that he would do anything for Christ, even go to prison or face death, yet he failed to admit to even knowing Jesus that same night. This is why he wept bitterly as he realized his failure. He had truly believed in his own strength to stand up for his beliefs, and he had failed.

Peter was not left in his failure. In…

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