Pain

Earlier this week I had an impromptu conversation with a coworker of mine (we will call Ron) that made my spirit search for clarity from the Holy Spirit.  We are of a similar age where a body can begin to hurt for no apparent reason.  Go to bed, no pain.  Wake up, pain.  Ron recalled a statement his grandfather used to say, “As long as I feel pain, I know I’m alive.  If I stop feeling pain, that’s when I’m in trouble.  I’m dead.”  Does that strike you as odd?  I felt spiritual restraint against rebuttal and kept listening to see if he would offer any explanation for such a curious philosophy on pain.  Let’s talk about that…

Ron went on to say that his grandfather was in WWII.  He stormed the beaches at Normandy and fought the Battle of the Bulge with Patton and lost count of how many of the enemy he dispatched.  Ron’s recollections transported my mind to the horrors of hand to hand combat, near starvation, survival, kill or be killed, and all the unfathomable gory glory of war.  His grandfather was shot in the Battle of the Bulge.  When he and the 18 remaining G.I.’s in their battalion made it back to Patton, he cauterized the wound and marched them right back to battle where Ron’s grandfather was shot 9 times by a machine gun nest.  So, Patton gave him light duty guarding prisoners on a transport ship from France to England on crutches till he was well enough to march back again. Pain was the only thing that let him know this was not a nightmare, but a living reality.

Ron does not indicate any evidence, by conversation or testimony, that he knows the Lord Jesus Christ as his savior.  I believe he’s lost.  Pain is his indicator of being alive.  He does not know the promise that Christ came to give us life, and that we [sic] might have it more abundantly (John 10:10).  The pain of life is not our evidence of living, but, rather the peace which passes all understanding.  It is not hurt which gives us relief that we are still breathing, but it is healing which quickens us unto refreshment of heart.  Our assurance, the blessed hope (Titus 2:13), the divine love that is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us (Romans 5:5) endows the comfort that any pain we might experience in this life is temporary and not what life is about.  Being alive here is only the rehearsal for life eternal where God shall wipe away all tears from our [sic] eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more PAIN: for the former things are passed away (Rev 21:4).  Ron doesn’t know about that, but, if the Lord will give me courage, opportunity and discernment, I will walk the tightrope of workplace witnessing and let him know that there is something more than pain that let’s us know we are alive.

Jesus Christ,  for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame (Hebrews 12:2), felt pain, the utmost, ultimate pain, on the cross to take away our pain.  To give us life.  His death gave us the opportunity to experience being truly alive.

God Bless You,

BroAdamB

 

 

Clean

Our hope and prayer is that the presence of the Lord has brought you communion, the power of God has given courage, and the accountability of the Holy Ghost has kept you clean before Him.  Let’s talk about that…

Since most of you were not with us last Wednesday night at Wahoo Baptist, I will share part of our preaching.  Matthew 8 gives us the scene of Jesus ministering to four sets of people with very different problems. But, all needed to find one common thing; the Will of God.  They all needed His Word and His touch.  Take the time to go back and study these accounts.  Today, though, let us focus on the first person in verses 1 through 3.

We read that there came a leper.  His horrible existence was marked by an incurable disease and isolation from all society.  His illness was part of the Curse of Humanity, sin, which brought all pain upon mankind.  But, he Came to Jesus.  Verse 2 says the leper Worshipped Jesus; Man’s Humility (I Peter 5:6).  He called Jesus LordRecognized His Deity, Divinity (Philippians 2:9).  The leper proposes unto the Lord, If Thou Wilt; Acknowledges God’s Authority, Sovereignty, and Seeks His Mercy (John 5:27).  Think of this regarding God’s Sovereignty… It is God’s Avenue of Approved Action or Allowed Suffering.  If ‘it’ is not His Will, He Won’t.  If it is, He WILL (Philippians 2:13).  When the leper says Thou Canst he is Exalting God’s Ability as Almighty.  He said, GOD CAN!!  The greatest soul-winner I have ever known, Brother Sammy Scruggs says ‘God can do anything but fail!’

The heart of the leper’s request was, Make Me Clean.  He needed God’s Purifying, His Purging.  Our logical reason focuses on the fact that Jesus, by His will and word, “be thou clean,” cured that leper and gave him a new life free from the pain of sickness.  Our message today is that our prayer to the Lord today might just need to be, Make Me Clean.  ‘But I’m not a leper…’  Maybe, but think of how the issues of our life could be cured if we prayed, Make my ___________ clean.  If the works of our hands were clean we would find a more pure service for Him.  If our walk was clean we would draw more men to the Cross of Calvary.  If our words were clean we would have fewer criticisms and conflicts, arguments and apologies.  If what we wore were clean our witness to the world would be noticeable and consistent.  If our thoughts were clean, oh my… oh me.  If only our thoughts were clean, what a ripe field for revival our churches would be.  Come to think of it, if our thoughts were clean then our works, walk, words, and what we wore would all be clean.  Let us band together in prayer this week that the Almighty God of Heaven upon His throne would make our thoughts clean.  I believe we would see that our life would be more Joyful and productive, more gracious and peaceful.  We can be certain He Can and He Will answer that prayer.

God Bless You,

BroAdamB

Expectations

Our hope and prayer is that you have met God this week with great expectation of what He will do in, through and for your life.  Isn’t it curious, though, when God actually comes through with what we ask?  Did we really think He would…could answer a prayer so serious, so difficult, so impossible?  Can we really put that kind of expectation on God?  Let’s talk about that..

Psalm 62:5 says “My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from Him.”  We can set down a sure expectation on God to be true to His Word (Ps 119:160), to forgive those who repent (I Jn 1:9), and to save those who believe and call upon on His name (Rom 10:13).  We can expect God to shelter those who trust in Him (Ps 62:8), and to reward those who labor, give and believe (Ps 62:12, I Cor 3:8, Heb 11:6, Lu 6:38).  In soberness of spirit, we must also expect the just God of heaven to punish those who reject Him (Rev 21:8).  There are certain expectations we can place on God with confidence.

There are also expectations that we place on man.  We expect kids to behave like grown ups.  There are unrealistic expectations like Lost people acting like Saved people (Ps 62:3-4).  Unfounded expectations that our prideful flesh convinces us of (I Cor 10:12).  I remember when I was faced with the truth that God will not hear my prayer if I regard iniquity in my heart (Ps 66:18).  We have unrealistic expectations that God will bless us, use us, or condone us if we operate in any way that is contrary to His word.  GET THIS.  The Will of God will NEVER contradict the Word of God.  If someone says, I think it is OK for me to get a tattoo of scripture or a cross or blah blah blah then you can expect that person has no regard whatsoever to the truth of scripture (Leviticus 19:28).

There are some expectations that are reasonable.  We should expect God to be true.  We should expect God to lead us according to His Will, His Word, and His Spirit.  We should certainly have a realistic expectation for Saved folks to act like Saved folks and not the world.  How can born again believers be a set apart people whom lost people see a difference in, if they can see no difference in Saved people???  God expects us to obey, serve and trust Him.  He expects us to be conformed to His image and transformed by His Word.  Those are Great Expectations which lead us to an Expected end (Jer 29:11).

God Bless You,

BroAdamB

 

 

Persuaded

What a tremendous time to be alive.  I think about all the pivotal times in the history of this green and blue globe and I see no better time to exist.  There was a time when prophesies were unfulfilled, the future promises of God were much further away, and the coming of the Lord seemed a distant appointment.  But not in this day.  I am fully Persuaded that the coming of the Lord could be before I finish typing this blo

                                                                    Ha! Just kidding.  Let’s talk about that for a while…

There is nothing more pitiful than someone who is trying to convince you of something they do not believe themselves.  Pity the singer whose song is all about someone else’s life.  How empty are the words of the armchair quarterback, the Monday morning commentators who never felt the crushing blow of a linebacker. If we have not been through anything we can be little comfort or critical care for someone who is going through it.  Try this; a congress that tells a citizenry how valuable a healthcare system is when they will not use it themselves.  You get the idea.  One cannot effectively persuade another if they are not persuaded themselves.

In the midst of his Hall of Fame induction passage in Hebrews chapter 11, Abraham’s vision of promises not yet revealed is expounded in verse 13.  “…having seen them afar off, and was [sic] persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.”   Abraham was persuaded by a promised son (Gen 21).  He was persuaded of a promised seed (Heb 11:11-12).  He was persuaded of a promised city (John 14:2-3).  He was persuaded by a promised country Here (Gen 12:1) and in Heaven (Lu 16:22). How else could Abraham be obedient unto the command to take his son, Isaac, up a mountain and lay him on the altar of sacrifice?  Because He who had begun a good work would be faithful to complete it.  He was Persuaded.

Abraham was not only persuaded by the promises of God, he embraced them.  He put his faith in them because the one who promised proved Himself faithful.  Not only that, Abraham confessed them.  He put the promises into practice as truth because the one who promised proved Himself true.

Our challenge of conviction:

  • Do we worry because we are persuaded of God’s promises?
  • Do we fail to witness because we are persuaded of God’s promises?
  • Do we pray like we are persuaded of God’s promises? 
  • Do we plan our life as if we are persuaded of God’s promises?
  • Do we sing like we are persuaded of God’s promises?
  • Do we preach like we are persuaded of God’s promises?

If I am persuaded His coming to rapture the church could be any moment (I Thes 4), I better start acting like it, praying like it, working like it, witnessing like it, looking for it.

We love you

BroAdamB

 

Somebody’s Coming

Good Sunday morning friends.  It’s early.  It was a late night.  But we have something to do and somewhere to go today.  We have something to tell today.  Somebody’s Coming.   Let’s talk about that…

We just concluded the 60th anniversary of the National Quartet Convention in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.  There was much anticipation, advertising and preparation.  It came, it happened and now it is past.  For centuries, millenniums, there was an anticipation, announcements about someone who was on the way. Isaiah said He would come from a virgins womb, and He did (7:14, 11:1, 62:11).  Jeremiah said which family tree He would come from, and He did (23:5).  Micah said which town He would be born in, and He was (5:2).  They all said, Somebody’s Coming!!!  And HE did.

One night on a hillside the Angels told some shepherds, He’s Here, and He was (Lu 2:11).  When he came into the synagogue on his eighth day Simeon said, He’s Here, and he was (Lu2:30).  John the Baptist looked up a dusty road and said, Behold, He’s Here, and He was (Jn 1:36).  At the end of His earthly ministry Jesus rode into Jerusalem on that asses colt and the multitudes waved palm branches and shouted, He’s Here!!  and He was.  Then He was crucified, buried in Joseph’s tomb.  He was gone.

But, He came back!  The resurrected Christ rose again and on a hill outside Jerusalem He ascended to the Heaven’s.  The angels said to His disciples, He’s Coming Back (Acts 1:9-11), and He will.  Paul told the church at Thessalonica, He’s Coming Back, and He Will (4:16-17).  Just as sure as it was prophesied that He was coming, He came.  Just as sure as the Angels announced His birth, He was here.  And, just as sure as Jesus said He was coming back, He Will.  NQC is over but Jesus is still coming.  We’ve got somewhere to go, something to tell, someone to bring with us.  Somebody’s Coming!!

God Bless You,

BroAdamB