Cause To Rejoice Or Mourn

So once again we are watching the circus live and in color on our television sets. The stage? Congress and the White House and the looming fiscal cliff. It is amazing to see after what was called the most important election of our lifetime that nothing has changed in Washington D.C. All the old leaders are the new leaders and you could not fill a bus up with those serving who are righteous in the sight of God. It reminds me of the old Rolling Stones song “We Won’t Get Fooled Again” where it ends with “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”

I was asked by some, and accused by others, if I was looking for perfection in a candidate. My answer to both is I am looking for righteousness in our public servants. Those, whether or not they are Christians, who have a sense of responsibility to their electorate and more important to “the laws of nature and nature’s God.” As my buddy Steve Deace always says, “We want people of convictions, not positions.”

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Not Haunted By Apprehension

The future and the unknown can be daunting. For that matter, this present day and its uncertainty can overwhelm us. If we look around we do not see much in which to hope. Looking with temporal eyes will cause fear almost every time. Fear comes in all sizes and shapes and can be triggered by almost anything.

Some fear is good; fear can keep us safe from physical harm. Parental fear can keep us on the right path, providing we have parents worthy of fearing. Fear can keep us from doing foolish things.

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Right-Being Exceeds Right-Doing

This past Friday I published The Truth Newsletter on the subject of “A Food Stamp Thanksgiving” and how a record number of Americans are on food stamps. Many are because they have fallen on hard times; many are because the government has made it easy to do so. And of course we the church should be doing a better job of not only meeting the physical needs of our neighbors, but also, and more importantly, their spiritual needs. One of those needs is reaping happiness from the fruit of your labors:

    “Blessed is every one who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways. When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you.” (Psalm 128:1-2)

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Thanksgiving Is A Special Virtue

Happy Thanksgiving! I am so glad I decided to write this devotional because I’ve been down a couple of days with vertigo and was kind of feeling sorry for myself. Karen and I will be going over to friends later today to celebrate Thanksgiving with them, but I woke up not preparing a turkey as is our tradition in the past. At first it really didn’t feel like Thanksgiving morning. But alas, it is!

Thanksgiving is not a day as much as it is a state of mind. While the fourth Thursday of November is a declared American holiday, thanksgiving should be a part of my Christian character. Continue reading “Thanksgiving Is A Special Virtue”

Faith In Full Bloom

So it all comes down to not trusting ourselves anymore. If we are people of faith, then we will trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and find firm footing. Our feet will not slip because we are planted on a firm surface. Jesus equated it to building a house:

    “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” (Matthew 7:24-27)

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Cherishing False Conceptions of God

The only belief system that has an “Open Season” sign on it is Christianity. Soon there will be pictures of Christians and Bibles with instructions to “Shoot On Sight.” Of course I am not talking literally but figuratively. The weapons of our foes are designed to maim and destroy our spirits. Remember this familiar verse well:

    “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12)

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The Government Is Upon His Shoulders

To hope and trust in God means doing so in His power and providence; not in our might and motives. Again, this may seem as a simple truth, and it is, but always remember that simple rarely equates to easy. We are hard-wired to do things on our own. But when we are placing our hope and trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ, we can see with eternal eyes and know that God is in control.

We just finished preparing our annual church budget to present to the church. This is not a budget that looks at the economic uncertainty in our nation. It is not a budget that considers that perhaps people will be strapped for money and giving will inevitably be down.

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Well Able To Overcome

Last week I wrote we needed to unpack a quote from our old friend Matthew Henry in his quote on Psalm 46. Here’s the quote:

    This psalm encourages to hope and trust in God; in His power and providence, and His gracious presence with His church in the worst of times. We may apply it to spiritual enemies, and the encouragement we have that, through Christ, we shall be conquerors over them. He is a Help, a present Help, a Help found, One we have found to be so; a Help at hand, one that is always near; we cannot desire a better, nor shall we ever find the like in any creature. Let those be troubled at the troubling of the waters, who build their confidence on a floating foundation; but let not those be alarmed who are led to the Rock, and there find firm footing. Here is joy to the church, even in sorrowful times.

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Finding Firm Footing

When I was a young boy and even in my teenage years growing up in Northern California near the Pacific Ocean, one of my favorite things to do when we went to Bodega Bay was to go out on the jetty at Doran Beach and climb and walk the big rocks all the way to the end. We would even fish from there. However, it was very dangerous and at times extremely slippery on those massive, jagged rocks. If you were not careful you could slip and hurt yourself real good.

As we go through this Christian life, keeping in mind the encouraging words of Christ to be of good cheer, we must be certain we know what that means. We’ve said it means to take courage, but often that is easier said than done. I would submit that we usually are fearful before we are courageous.

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We Can Always Take Courage

So many Christian patriots are very discouraged by the election outcome. Many are ready to quit; many are ready to start a third party; many are just ready “to go home” (I can sympathize with the latter sentiment). Discouragement is one of Satan’s greatest weapons against God’s people. It can be lethal. He may use persecution, predicaments, or privation to bring us to our knees and shout, “I give up!” Satan loves defeated Christians because misery loves company.

Beloved, we are not defeated! Our foe has been vanquished and we already have the victory.

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Let Us Answer Every Fear

Glory to God, for He is on His throne! Jesus is King, Lord, and Savior to all who call to Him for salvation. America is today still the greatest nation in history and I praise God for being born an American. No matter the outcome of our elections throughout history, the peaceful transition of power is a God-breathed miracle captured by godly men who founded our nation. They were God-fearing men who recognized and relied upon the Providence of God.

Our nation is truly at a crossroads. The political outcome of yesterday’s election is a reflection…a symptom…of what ails our great country. Over half of our country clearly has an entitlement mentality where they believe by merely being Americans who may or may not have been dealt a bad hand that they are entitled to other people’s money. Beloved, that is a clear indication of a deeper issue that must be addressed.

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Obliged to Choose

Tomorrow is election day. I’ve made my predictions as have many others. Some say Mitt Romney is going to win in a landslide (as I believe) and others are calling for a narrow victory for Barack Obama. Regardless the outcome, what will Christians do on Wednesday morning to whatever lies ahead? Will we throw our hands up in the air and give up because Obama was re-elected, or will we go back to our workaday lives no longer vigilant over government because Romney won?

The American Church needs to answer three questions and it is not I who has come up with them. The great theologian A.W. Pink in his book “The Sovereignty of God” asks the following:

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