Learning to Walk by Faith (1)

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“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”                                        2Co 5:7 NAS It’s time to “get with it,” when God tells you the same thing three separate times: “The just shall live by faith” (See Hab 2:4; Ro 1:17; Gal 3:11). This is not a suggestion for theological debate, it’s His will for your life. Clearly, God has made faith the … Read More

Show Your Love Now!

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“He has commanded us to love one another.”                             2Jn v.6 NLT Each morning pray: “Lord, whether or not I get anything else done, help me to spend this day loving You and loving others, because that’s what Your Word says life is all about.” If you do that, you’ll treat those around you more graciously—and people will notice it. You’ll … Read More

Are You Stressed Out About Money? (2)

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“I am the Lord…who teaches you to profit.”                           Isa 48:17 NAS The best way to overcome financial anxiety is by trusting God to meet all your needs. You say, “That’s nice, but what does God know about my business?” More than you think! He’s the CEO of the whole world. When it comes to successful systems, nobody knows more than … Read More

Are You Stressed Out About Money? (1)

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“It is [God] who gives you the ability to produce wealth.”                                      Dt 8:18 NIV The story of Elijah being fed by the ravens teaches us that God can take care of us in a bad economy (See 1Ki 17:1-7). The story of Joseph teaches us that when we follow God’s plan, we will have all that we need to get … Read More

The Secret of Satisfaction

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“I have learned how to be content with whatever I have.”                                       Php 4:11 NLT If money guaranteed happiness, wouldn’t the rich be happier than everybody else? Studies show that often they’re not. Happy people don’t follow money, they follow their God-given passion. In What Happy People Know, Dr. Dan Baker writes: “The man in front of me seemed to … Read More

Four Lessons Learned on Your Journey (2)

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“Call to me and I will…tell you…things you do not know.”         Jer 33:3 NIV Third, you learn the secret of prayer. Do you feel lost in unfamiliar territory, uncertain as to what your next move should be? God uses such times to get your attention, call you back to Himself and encourage you to lean on Him, your unfailing source … Read More

Four Lessons Learned on Your Journey (1)

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“In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.”  Pr 16:9 NIV Remember needing a road atlas when you took a trip? Now you just program your destination into the car’s GPS and it tells you where and when to turn, how far to the next gas station, and when you’ll arrive. No guessing, confusion … Read More

Financial Freedom

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“I will give you…right desires.”                                            Eze 36:26 TLB The Millionaire Next Door is a bestselling book about two people living on the same street, in comparable homes, working at similar jobs. But by age fifty, one is financially secure while the other is drowning in debt. Their problem isn’t money; it’s unwillingness to defer gratification. We want what we want … Read More

Thoughts on the Tabernacle (3)

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“Go into all the world and preach.”                                      Mk 16:15 NKJV The third element in the building of the tabernacle was equal access. The word “tabernacle” means “tent of meeting.” It’s where God met and interacted with His people. So He positioned it in the middle of the camp, surrounded by each of the twelve tribes. Everybody had to be able … Read More

Thoughts on the Tabernacle (2)

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“Make everything according to the pattern I have shown you.”                               Ex 25:40 NLT The second element that marked the building of the Old Testament tabernacle was excellence. God condemns perfectionism because it stifles our creativity and robs us of all sense of progress. And Jesus condemned those who gave to impress others. “When you do a charitable deed, do not … Read More

Thoughts on the Tabernacle (1)

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“Bring Me an offering.”                                                         Ex 25:2 NKJV When it came time to build the Old Testament tabernacle, God said to Moses, “Do all things according to the pattern which I showed you” (See Ex 25:40). Whether you’re building a relationship, a career, a business or a ministry, it will always require several elements: Sacrifice. The building of the tabernacle begins … Read More

Turn Your Weakness into a Weapon

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“I just let Christ take over!”                                                   2Co 12:10 TM Speaking of his “thorn,” Paul writes: “I was given the gift of a handicap…At first I didn’t think of it as a gift, and begged God to remove it…he told me, ‘My grace is enough; it’s all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness.’ Once I heard … Read More

Don’t Live an Unexamined Life

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“Search me, O God, and know my heart.”                                     Ps 139:23 When you live an unexamined life—it shows! Author Gordon MacDonald writes: “I was reading authors who were saying that if Christ’s followers don’t grow, it’s because they don’t make a habit of evaluating their lives. These authors were describing me. I was always on the go, never looking deeply inside. … Read More

Set Boundaries (4)

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“I can make it through anything.”                                             Php 4:12 TM Flexible boundaries. Rigid boundaries cause you to shut other people out and live unprepared and ill equipped for the give-and-take that healthy relationships require. Permeable boundaries leave you defenseless against “users” who feel entitled to manipulate you and who expect to be taken care of at your expense. But flexible boundary … Read More

Set Boundaries (3)

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“Like a city with broken-down walls.”                                     Pr 25:28 NLT Permeable boundaries. Well-adjusted people find the right balance between protecting their personal space, and allowing others to infiltrate, manipulate and dominate them. They know how to say yes to what’s healthy and no to what’s not. Permeable boundary people, on the other hand, allow others to permeate their lives at will, … Read More

Set Boundaries (2)

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“Its parts should have equal concern for each other.”              1Co 12:25 NIV When you buy a house, you need clearly marked boundary lines to let you know what’s yours and what’s not. Good boundaries make good neighbors. The Bible says, “Seldom set foot in your neighbor’s house—too much of you, and they will hate you” (Pr 25:17 NIV). So, how … Read More

Set Boundaries (1)

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“All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’.”                            Mt 5:37 NIV Set Boundaries (1) When does “a good thing” become “too much?” Can I help you, without hurting me? Can we share our lives, without me giving up mine? When do you truly need my help? When do I need to let go, and let you and God … Read More

Practice Pure Religion!

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“Pure…religion before God…is this.”                                     Jas 1:27 NKJV Jesus said about every act of kindness you show toward someone who’s hurting or in need: “You did it to Me” (Mt 25:40 NKJV). Wow! Maybe next time you’re too busy to show concern, that’ll make you stop and think. In answer to the question, “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” … Read More

Don’t Be an Older Brother

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“Son…all that I have is yours.”                                             Lk 15:31 NKJV Don’t Be an Older Brother In the parable of the prodigal son Jesus is talking to two different groups: regular people, and religious leaders who complain that Jesus “receives sinners” (Lk 15:2 NKJV). We all know the story. The Prodigal Son “blew it” and ended up in a pigpen. Later, when … Read More

Encourage Someone Today

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“Epaphroditus…ministered to my need.”                                Php 2:25 NKJV Encourage Someone Today When people are hurting, they need your support until they can get back on their feet again. Medical researchers have developed a bone-bonding compound that illustrates this. It looks like toothpaste. Once injected into the body it hardens in ten minutes. In twelve hours it reaches the compression strength of … Read More

The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (4)

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“[There is] a time to be silent and a time to speak.”                    Ecc 3:7 NAS The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (4) Teach your child to ask: (1) “Is this the best time to make this decision?” Decisions made in haste are often regretted. “There is a time to be silent and a time to speak.” Poor … Read More

The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (3)

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“Your thoughts…are the source of true life.”                              Pr 4:23 CEV The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (3) Teach your child to ask themselves these two questions: (1) “How will I feel afterwards?” What outlasts our decisions are the subsequent feelings of self-respect versus shame, and positive self-worth versus negative self-worth. Our actions ultimately become history, but our … Read More

The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (2)

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“A man reaps what he sows.”                                                   Gal 6:7 NIV The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (2) Somebody said, “Yard by yard life is hard, inch by inch life’s a cinch!” For their life to go right, your children must learn to think right. So teach them to ask: (1) “What are my options in this situation?” But … Read More

The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (1)

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“Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve.”            Jos 24:15 NIV The Most Important Skill You Can Teach Your Child (1) Good decision making is the key to a happy life. But good decision making is not a skill some of us are naturally blessed with, while poor decision making is a handicap others are born with. Courage, education, … Read More

God Is Working Out His Plan for You

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“I make known the end from the beginning.”                           Isa 46:10 NIV God Is Working Out His Plan for You You are not a mistake your parents made in the heat of passion. What your parents did may have been illegitimate, but you are not. You may wonder: “God, is it possible that You have a reason for my conception? Am … Read More

Prayer Thoughts (2)

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“Be still, and know that I am God.”                                          Ps 46:10 NIV Prayer Thoughts (2) Give God your whispering thoughts. Through the centuries Christians have learned the value of brief sentence prayers. These are prayers that can be whispered anywhere, in any setting. Frank Laubach sought unbroken communion with God by asking Him questions. Every two or three minutes he would … Read More

Prayer Thoughts (1)

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“Every morning, I tell you what I need, and I wait for your answer.”                       Ps 5:3 NCV Prayer Thoughts (1) It takes time, but eventually sheep grow familiar with the voice of their shepherd and learn to trust him for everything they need. So how can you become equally familiar with the voice of God? Here are a few ideas: … Read More

Always Tell the Truth

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“You desire truth in the inward parts.”                                     Ps 51:6 NKJV Always Tell the Truth The Bible says, “Nor was any deceit in [Christ’s] mouth” (Isa 53:9 NIV). And if God has His way with us, none will be found in ours either. God doesn’t seek to minimize our deception, but to eliminate it altogether. He is blunt about dishonesty. “No … Read More

Redeemed, Released, and Redirected

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“Loose him, and let him go.”                                                          Jn 11:44 Redeemed, Released, and Redirected When Jesus stood at his friend’s grave and said, “Lazarus, come forth,” His friend, who’d been dead for four days, shuffled out, still bound from head to toe in grave clothes. His grave clothes didn’t just fall off the minute Jesus spoke to him. No, he needed someone … Read More

“As Is”

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“Bearing with one another.”                                                    Col 3:13 NAS “As Is” Have you ever been in a discount store where merchandise is labeled “slightly irregular,” or “purchase as is”? They don’t tell you where the flaw is. And once you buy it you can’t return it. Well, in case you haven’t noticed, we all live in the “as is” department. Stop and … Read More

Shake It Off

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“But Paul shook the snake off into the fire.”                               Ac 28:5 NIV Shake It Off The story’s told of a farmer whose mule fell into a well. Since he had no way to get him out, he decided to bury him there. He got a truckload of dirt and dumped it on top of the mule. But instead of lying … Read More

Overcoming Our Carnal Nature

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“The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus.”                                     Ro 8:2 Overcoming Our Carnal Nature Paul addresses the daily battle that’s waged between our old nature and our new one: “The power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions…I can will it, but I can’t do it. I decide to do good, but I don’t really do … Read More

Growing into Leadership (5)

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“Listen…and I will give you some advice.”                               Ex 18:19 NIV Growing into Leadership (5) As a leader, it’s your job to see that things get done. But as the workload grows you will have to find people with talents equal to the task; otherwise you will stop growing. So what keeps us from seeking out the right people and delegating … Read More

Growing into Leadership (4)

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“The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge; the ears of the wise seek it out.” Pr 18:15 NIV Growing into Leadership (4) The story’s told of two Irishmen out hunting, when one of them falls to the ground. He doesn’t seem to be breathing and his eyes are rolled back in his head. The other guy whips out his cell … Read More

Growing into Leadership (3)

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“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me.”                 Ps 139:23 NLT Growing into Leadership (3) In his Pogo cartoon strip, Walt Kelly said, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” The hardest person in the world to lead will always be yourself. Human nature seems to endow us with the ability to size up everybody except … Read More

Growing into Leadership (2)

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“I, Tertius, the one writing this letter for Paul, send my greetings.”                          Ro 16:22 NLT Growing into Leadership (2) Paul surrounded himself with people who were willing to lay down their lives for him (See Ro 16:3-4). Some of them are virtually unknown. Ever hear of Tertius? He recorded Paul’s thoughts so we could read them. We all know about … Read More

Growing into Leadership (1)

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“We are labourers together.”                                                           1Co 3:9 Growing into Leadership (1) A cartoon shows an executive sitting forlornly behind a big desk. Standing meekly on the other side of the desk is a man dressed in work clothes who says, “If it’s any comfort to you, it’s lonely at the bottom too.” The truth is, you’ll meet lonely people at the … Read More

Playing the Lesser Part

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“Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead.”                           Php 2:3 TM Playing the Lesser Part Frances Green was an elderly lady living on a pension. Every year she sent a dollar to the Republican National Convention. One day she received an invitation to meet President Reagan. Not realizing the RSVP should include a generous donation, she scraped up every cent … Read More

How to Achieve Financial Security

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“The…years of abundance…came to an end.”                          Ge 41:53 NIV How to Achieve Financial Security The Bible says: “Joseph stored up huge quantities of grain…The seven years of abundance in Egypt came to an end, and the seven years of famine began, just as Joseph had said. There was famine in all other lands, but in the whole land of Egypt … Read More

Little Foxes

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“Catch…the little foxes that spoil the vines.”                            SS 2:15 NKJV Little Foxes Michelangelo once sculpted a figure out of marble while a friend watched. Later his friend went away on business and when he returned he said, “I see you haven’t worked on your sculpture.” The great artist replied, “I’ve been working constantly on it since you left.” His friend … Read More

It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (5)

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“God…will…make a way of escape.”                                           1Co 10:13 It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (5) Look at the last part of this verse: “[God] will…make a way of escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” Before the Army sends you into battle it first sends you to boot camp. You’re up at dawn running miles with a heavy backpack, … Read More

It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (4)

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“He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.”                                   1Co 10:13 NIV It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (4) The Bible says, “He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.” You have been tempered for the test! Like tempered steel or glass, certain additives have been placed within you to increase your ability … Read More

It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (3)

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“But God is faithful.”                                                                  1Co 10:13 It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (3) Here’s a promise you can stand on when your world has been shaken: “But God is faithful.” Jesus said, “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away” (Lk 21:33). In a world of uncertainty you can sing, “On Christ the solid rock … Read More

It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (2)

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“But such as is common to man.”                                                1Co 10:13 It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (2) The Bible says your struggle is not unique, it’s “common to man.” Your secret is not really a secret, it’s just a secret shared by others who are equally afraid to talk. The only time we tend to be honest is when we’re in … Read More

It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (1)

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“There hath no temptation taken you.”                                          1Co 10:13 It’s Just Part of Life’s Journey (1) Paul writes, “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to [mankind].” Notice the word “taken.” Suddenly you’re “taken” by a set of circumstances you didn’t create, don’t want, and don’t know how to get out of. Understand this: You don’t pick … Read More

You’re Here for a Reason

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“I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been spared.”     Ge 32:30 NLT You’re Here for a Reason The Bible says Satan works “day and night” building a case against you (See Rev 12:10). But with God’s Word “in your mouth and…heart” (Ro 10:8 NCV) you can overcome him. When Satan says give up, God says … Read More

Take the Stress Out of Serving God (2)

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“I…contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.”                        Col 1:29 NIV Take the Stress Out of Serving God (2) You say, “Since serving successfully is a joint effort requiring cooperation with others who will often disagree with me, what’s God’s alternative to people-pleasing?” Paul answers, “Whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the … Read More

Take the Stress Out of Serving God (1)

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“Am I trying to please people?”                                                Gal 1:10 NIV Take the Stress Out of Serving God (1) Whether we are ordained ministers or lay people, we aren’t exempt from stress. A deadly combination of traits seen frequently in those serving God produces inferiority and perfectionism—traits that make us obsessive-compulsive performers who think we’re inadequate and that our service is never … Read More

Pruned for Greater FruitFulness

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“He who abides in Me…bears much fruit.”                              Jn 15:5 NKJV Pruned for Greater FruitFulness Some folks view the Christian life as a bed of roses, others see it as a battlefield. The first group says, “If I’ve enough faith I’ll never be sick, broke, or have problems.” The second group says, “I have more troubles than Job.” The truth is, … Read More

God’s Word Doesn’t Change

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“Your righteous laws are eternal.”                                        Ps 119:160 NIV God’s Word Doesn’t Change A publishing house advertised: Ten books to read before you die. And the Bible didn’t make the list! Amazing; if there’s one book you should read it’s the Bible! When a well-known Christian author replaced her favorite cookbook with a “New and Updated” version, she said: “It wasn’t … Read More