Wednesday, 14 March 2018

It is no secret what God can do

Just been listening to my friends from Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands singing a song my sister and I used to sing when we were little guys growing up here in Australia - IT IS NO SECRET WHAT GOD CAN DO.  The link follows if you would like to hear it - the lyrics say a lot to me - hope it blesses you too.

So often we mess up in our walk with Jesus - the thing is He doesn't want us to be discouraged - God is just so ready to forgive us and welcome us back into fellowship with Him.

That very fact alone should encourage us to keep coming back to Him and starting again.

When you first become a Christian you start on a journey that has so many twists and turns it will make your head spin.

One minute you are praising God sailing along on a beautiful lake, next you are fighting some spiritual monster in a dark cave or battling along on a big treacherous mountain called doubt or anxiety or worry. There as just so many unexpected turns it can be quite natural to lose our way and suddenly find ourselves going backwards - a situation where none of us want to be!

When we go backwards with Jesus it means we can't possibly keep walking with Him - we let go of His hand and we find ourselves floundering along on our own - the dark times seem to get darker and the trials and temptations seem to multiply and we have no real way of overcoming them and they just mount up in our lives one after the other until we feel like we are drowning - which in a dramatic and tragic way we actually are.

Going backwards and leaving Jesus and what he has done for us can have disastrous consequences not only spiritually but physically also - we can become so despondent that we actually become ill with depression and anxiety - it can effect not only ourselves but our families and friends - our relationship with people can be changed for ever.

Going in reverse in our Christian walk can be a deliberate decision unfortunately, and can bring overpowering feelings of guilt like a tsunami exploding in our lives, sometimes on a daily basis, which can be devastating and can debilitate us for eternity.

But there is also some great news here! GOD LOVES YOU AND ME! Even though you may be going to reverse He wants to re-call you - just like Volkswagen have done recently to some of their models. We are precious to God and he doesn't want any of us to go in reverse.

Please know this, that our Heavenly Father wants you to return to Him. He is open to your prayers and if you are truly sincere in turning from your sin and genuinely wish to come back to Him, then He will respond with love, mercy and above all forgiveness.

Is there anything holding you back right now from asking God to forgive you and coming back into His open arms? God's promises are true and certain - He has said in His word that if we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins (which include deliberately turning our back on Him) and to wash us clean from all of our past sins. - Pretty awesome if you ask me!

Please don't let your overwhelming sense of guilt and shame hold you back from re-uniting with God.

Another thing we can do is to try to put right anything that you know which could hold you back from having a really close relationship with God. Maybe you are having a hard time trying to forgive and vice versa. Ask God for wisdom in knowing how to handle situations from your past that can often affect your walk with God in the future.

Unfortunately Christians do sin and we will continue to do so until we are eventually taken to be with God and then our life will never be influenced by this world, temptations and trials ever again. On saying that please, let's not be defined or identified with sin especially those sins that have been washed away by the blood of Jesus.

I touched on this subject in one of my blogs way back - the link follows - It's called the EVIL TWIN and talks about how we as Christians still have the remnants of our old life within us - That's why it is SO IMPORTANT  to keep focused on Jesus as we live in this crazy world of ours:-

When we first came to Christ we became new creations in Him - meaning that the very Spirit of God - the Holy Spirit came and lived in our lives, producing in us a changed life - we are no longer "controlled by sin".  So if you have found yourself going in reverse, and you feel the Holy Spirit prompting you and urging you to come back, you can always!

That said, on the other hand, a so-called christian who feels no remorse, who can sin without thought, even deny Christ who brought them to the cross in the first place, then that person never truly knew Christ to begin with.

I truly believe that those who belong to Christ will remain with Him regardless because God will NEVER let them out of His hand. True! we may start going in reverse, but like me, God will not let you properly rest until you have come back to Him and been washed anew by the blood of Jesus. Sins forgiven and forgotten.

On the other side of the coin to that, a person who rejects the saving grace of Jesus, turning their backs on faith, trust and the very mercy of God, then I believe that these people never belonged to Christ in the first place.

In 2 Timothy 12 it says quite plainly "If we disown Him (Jesus) then He will disown us". Pretty damning words and brutally honest. BUT if your conscience is seared and you feel you need to get right with God then please don't delay - get it right - come back and start afresh with Jesus.

God bless you this week as you start afresh with Jesus - let me know how you feel and Sue and I will pray for you and encourage you through your walk with Him.

Friday, 2 March 2018

Sometimes ya gotta wing it when you don't know how to fly

Just back from a mighty week away at the Tamworth Country Music Festival watching our 14 year old Grandblessing,  Elyssa Faith perform.

For those who have never heard of the Tamworth Country Music Festival just suffice to say that Tamworth here in Australia is the tiniest, youngest sibling of  Nashville USA. Enough said?

Elyssa Faith is an up and coming young star so keep an eye on her career - she is just hanging out to go to Nashville one day and I'm sure she may - she certainly has that Country feel about her voice, that's for sure.

She also sings in a duo called the Amity Angels and they have just released their very first EP - all very exciting stuff for us here in Rankin Park.

Here she is courtesy of her brother Sam's photography. Check him out on instagram:-  deodorant_can_productions

Anyway while we were there we heard this amazing young man sing his own original song which included the lyrics "Sometimes ya gotta wing it when you don't know how to fly - sometimes ya gotta sing it when you don't know all the lines."

While we were listening I couldn't help thinking just how often we as Christians have to 'wing it' when it comes to following Jesus.

How many times have we been put on the spot feeling that God really wants us to do something here - I know I have and I must admit to my failing which is to immediately say "No way Lord! I can't do that!" I've lost count!  But it is at those times when we eventually do give in and submit to His will a feeling of immense closeness to the very Creator of the universe  sort of creeps over us and we end up being the very ones blessed.

I remember feeling the need to volunteer at a palliative care hospice - completely out of left field came this desire and a feeling of necessity and urgency that I really had no option than to obey the call which I eventually decided must have come from God.

It's times like these that not only leave you feeling super-blessed but also amazingly close to God especially if you have been fortunate enough to share just a smidgen of Christ's love and strength to someone along the way.

Something that we all have to learn which is so often so hard especially when it means you having to step out of your comfort zone and like good old Moses when confronted by God to go get the people out of Egypt said "No way - I'm too old - I have a family - I can't speak I have a speech impediment etc. " We can all come up with THE most amazing excuses - I know first hand because I have said so to God so many times.

What we need to do when we sense God is calling us is to step out with confidence taking time to pray, asking for wisdom and if you don't get a sincere change of plans then set off in the direction in which He is pointing you and do it with confidence.

Jesus Himself is a prime example for us here - He didn't  really WANT to go to the cross and basically He didn't have to but He did it because He knew God, His father, willed it and wanted Him to do it to save you and me - a mind blowing thought of huge proportions.

So when we do step out with God into this fallen world of ours where even the innocent seem to suffer, and suffer intolerably, it has raised for me the question of how I, or we in this case, should act toward God in such a world?

So if our fear of maybe 'suffering' for Jesus is stalling our motivation to 'wing it when we don't know how to fly" I personally feel that we have to come to a point in our lives where we trust the very one who has the wisdom to have called us in the first place.

I have learned and would like to pass onto you one of my biggest lessons and that is not to know why we are suffering but to know and fear God who is the very source of all wisdom.

When we are standing on the very edge of change and that fearful feeling comes over us like a big black wet blanket we MUST reach out for God - the very author of wisdom. If he called us to do what seems to us to be THE most terrifying thing we have ever done, then He will see us through it. We just HAVE to depend on that.

A definite peace will come to us once we have trusted in his complete sovereignty. Once we firmly know that God has the ultimate control in the situation in which we find ourselves, we can then step out with boldness and even courage, trusting in the God who placed us here.

The last few blogs I have written touches on doubt and fear and these can make us so hesitant to do what we plainly know is God's will for us. It is when we are feeling like this that we need to trust Him more and submit to His will and His direction for us.

I know it may seem harsh and ever so frightening but I will guarantee that you will end up being the very one blessed by the change that God has placed on your heart.

So in conclusion I would just reiterate that we may have to 'wing it' for Jesus sometimes - especially if you feel you 'just can't fly'. Those times when you feel God is calling you to move on or move out, take up the calling with confidence and trust in the one who calls you.

God will never let you down - on the other side of the coin if you feel you are in the wrong place and the wrong time, again, don't be afraid to move out regardless of the pressure that can come to bear.

God will certainly let us know where we should be and what we should be doing. The thing is are we trusting Him enough to listen to His call with confidence and surety?

The Return of the king

Loved the Lord of the Rings - The Return of the KING!! "The eye of the enemy is moving - the end has come - Frodo moves closer to Mo...