Day 2: 50 Days of Impact

How we live our daily lives impact those around us. How we respond and how we treat others can greatly affect our witness. Not all Christians actions match their words but if we as believers want to make a change in those around us we need to show them how important it is to us.

“Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”
1 Corinthians 13:7 NLT

Love never gives up. That is the motto of my marriage. Never give up, never lose faith, endure through every circumstance. I wish I could say this was true of all my friendships, coworkers or even the connections I have with some of my family. I want it to be but it seems easier to just give up, and let the “wind of fate” prevail.

But we are reminded here that if we love others as Jesus loves others, then we should never give up on those we love. They still matter to God no matter how we feel towards them. Our love we share with them no matter what the circumstance, stands as an example of who we are and what we believe in.

So today if you feel like someone you have been talking to or sharing your faith with is a lost cause, give your head a reset and remember love never gives up. God hasn’t given up on them so neither should you. Love them. Pour your life into them and let the Holy Spirit do the rest.

Jesus, help us to never give up loving our brothers and sisters. There are so many people in this world who need to know you Jesus. There are no lost causes. Holy Spirit I will do my part so to help you do your part. Give me opportunities to show the love of Jesus with those around me, even today. They matter to you, so they matter to me. Amen

 

Day 45: Original 50 Days of Pray Revisited

Thoughts on Day 45: We all have someone in our lives that we don’t particularly like and that in itself makes it hard for us to show them love. Loving someone and liking someone are different. Jesus didn’t like the ways the people were living and how they were acting, yet he loved them. He didn’t mix the two up, nor should we. We will always have people in our lives that we just don’t get along with, but we need to love them as Jesus loves them, even if we disagree with them. Attacking them and gossiping about them is not loving them. How can we love someone we just don’t like?

 

DAY FORTY-FIVE

“You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.” (Matthew 5:9 MSG)

Have you ever been in a church where everyone is getting along? Awesome isn’t it. You can feel the love of God moving among the people.

Now imagine a church where the people are fighting one another or the pastor. Maybe it doesn’t take much to get an image as you have seen it before. No growth, and the church seems okay on the outside but falling apart in the inside.

Jesus tells us that we need to cooperate. It’s not always easy when you put a large group of people together and expect them all to go along with the party line. Cooperating does not mean blindly following either.

Now cooperation doesn’t always mean agreeing with everything that is going on, but it is being able to put your opinions aside if needed to share the vision of the group. You have the right to present your opposition in love to the appropriate people, but when you stand up and start outright opposition is when the hard time and fighting would begin.

Are you a cooperative member of your family? Or are you a fighter?

Dear Jesus, I want to discover my place in my family. I want to be used by You and help further Your kingdom in my community and my home church. Show me how to cooperate with others in the global church family.
Amen

DAY 38: Original 50 Days of Pray Revisited

Thoughts on Day 38: To understand what a principled person looks like we should look no further than Job. A man who walked to the best of his abilities to follow God. This was no easy feat as this was life before the sacrifice of Jesus. He made the animal sacrifices, ensured he did everything he could to live a life that honoured God. Compared to Job we should have an easier time living a principled life.

DAY THIRTY-EIGHT

“But principled people hold tight, keep a firm grip on life, sure that their clean, pure hands will get stronger and stronger! (Job 17:9 MSG)

Job was a man who had everything and still loved God. He was a devote follower, he would even pray that if his kids had sinned at their parties that God would forgive them. He was a good father, a good steward and a good husband.

As you probably know Job lost everything, and not because of what Job had done, no, in this case, it was because of who Job was. Satan came before God and made a decree that if Job was to lose everything he would have no choice but to curse God. God knowing Job better then Satan agreed to allow this, knowing that Job was a righteous man and trusted he would persevere.

Job may not have cursed God, but he did in no certain terms become depressed, he was torn up over what he had done to deserve such punishment from God, in which he could find no reason. His three friends kept on him trying to convince him that there must be something that he had done.

Then in one of Jobs replies to his friends he states the scripture above.

Principled people, can you honestly look at your life and attach that to you? Do you know anyone whom that fits, I hope you can name a couple…would they say the same about you?

Jobs friends were either not that close or not that observant, if they had really seen how Job lived his life would they not have seen that he lived a life for God?

So strive to be a principled person, keep your hands on the work of God, striving to do good, keeping your hands pure, avoiding evil desires, so that you can be strengthened.

Dear Jesus, help us to be like Job. A principled man whose life’s desire was to honour You in all he did. Even when his life fell apart he didn’t dismiss or curse who You were, nor did he blame You. Help us to follow his example in this. Give us clean hands, keeping a firm grip on life so that we may grow stronger in You. Amen

Day 37: Original 50 Days of Pray Revisited

Thoughts on Day 37: How we carry ourselves says a lot about who we are. If I was going around telling people about the beautiful apples I had to offer yet never shared them or produced any, what would people think of me? Probably start calling me a sham or scam artist. If we as believers claim to love Jesus and truly love those around us then let’s start acting it as well. People believe what they see.
DAY THIRTY-SEVEN
“If you grow a healthy tree, you’ll pick healthy fruit. If you grow a diseased tree, you’ll pick worm-eaten fruit. The fruit tells you about the tree. (Matthew 12:33 MSG)
Jesus was telling this story, talking about believers as trees. Jesus used a lot of metaphors in His ministry. But in essence, this is saying if you just put junk and sin into your life you won’t do much for the kingdom of God. You actually cause people to reconsider what you believe as what you are offering isn’t very attractive. But if you cultivate your life, producing tasty fruit and the love of Christ exudes everything you do, then people love to try good looking fruit.
Ever notice in the grocery store how the fruit gets picked over and in most cases, the good fruit will be chosen and the damaged is left behind. We are looking for good fruit.
Have you ever bought or bitten into a beautiful piece of fruit to find out that it was rotten just under the surface? There are many people out there who offer things that look great and beautiful on the outside but the core of what they are giving is rotten. Sin corrupts the best of intentions if the heart is not focused on giving glory to God.
Are you producing good fruit? Examine your life, what are you fertilising your life with? It will tell you a lot about the fruit you produce.
Dear Jesus, I pray that You will help us examine our lives to see what kind of fruit we are producing. Help us to prune any dead limbs or non-producing areas away so that we can be a tree that produces awesome fruit. amen

Day 33: Original 50 Days of Pray Revisited

Thoughts on Day 33: Marketing our faith has seemingly become the standard these days. One must have a spin to convince people to attend your particular church or event. This may catch the odd few, but what is the heart behind your mission? Is your mission to reach the lost or have the latest and greatest ministry? I wonder if Jesus was around today what his slogan for his ministry would be? Would he even have one?

 

16 March 15

DAY THIRTY-THREE

“Don’t be flip with the sacred. Banter and silliness give no honour to God. Don’t reduce holy mysteries to slogans. In trying to be relevant, you’re only being cute and inviting sacrilege. (Matthew 7:6 MSG)

WWJD, P.U.S.H., Jesus Freak, Jesus take the wheel, I could list many other slogans that have come around through the years, but the question I have is do people flock to these because they were cute or because they lead people to Christ. I mean if Nike hadn’t taken “Just Do It” would that not fit our desire for unbelievers to come to Christ?

Now I am not saying the slogans above were wrong, but at some point, they were all over merchandised because someone somewhere knew there was money in these statements. Now, these slogans are just catch phrases that don’t carry much weight and are used by unbelievers as much as believers but thrown around flippant in humour or distaste.

We as believers need to focus on what the bible says, what Jesus taught us and following His call for us to make disciples. I see us teaching someone WWJD, but failing to take the time to show them in the scripture what Jesus actually did, expecting a new believer to just know. Not what we were called to do, we are called to make disciples, we are not supposed to lead them to Christ and walk away. We can’t teach them Pray Until Something Happens but not take the time to show them what the Holy word says about prayer and the examples of God answering prayer. How can we expect them to be a Jesus freak when we don’t show them what it means to love Jesus so much that you would be willing to die for Him?

Slogans work great for a season, but the word of God lasts forever. I don’t expect to see slogan t-shirts in heaven. So, don’t get caught up in the latest Christian slogan, focus on what God wrote for us. Just do it.

Dear Jesus, help us to focus on Your teaching and calling for us. To make disciples is our desire. It is to easy to be caught up in the next Christian hype, but Jesus we want Your kingdom to grow and that none shall perish. Help us to get that embedded into our hearts. Thank You for giving us a guide on how to live. Amen

Day 32: Original 50 Days of Pray Revisited

Thoughts on Day 32: We become a people who will eat anything? Remember there was the group of confused people a few years back who we know use the phrase “drinking the kool-aid” or the reality shows that encouraged contestants to eat weird and gross food for money?  If you are told something should taste right over and over again you will start to think it really does taste good. If you were to truly take the time to understand what you’re digesting you may have second thoughts.

Of course, I am not really talking about food, but the reality is we have in general starting accepting things that really aren’t healthy for our world. Until we wake up and accept that the truth of Jesus love and sacrifice we can only expect it to get worse.

 

16 March 15

DAY THIRTY-TWO

“You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat. (Matthew 5:6 MSG)

I mean who likes to eat, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like a good meal. We work hard preparing and cooking the best meals for our friends and family. We wouldn’t serve just anything, would we? Ever come to the table, sit down to what looks and smells amazing, but you have a hard time eating because you spent the afternoon eating junk food? You were busy all afternoon satisfying your body’s craving for sugar, not anticipating what was going to be on the table for supper.

This is what we do to ourselves every time we come into Gods presence. Whether it be on Sunday’s, small groups or your own devotional time. We fill our space between these times with sugary treats that provide enjoyment to our bodies and then when we come for substance that God provides we aren’t that hungry for His awesome meal that He has prepared.

Today’s challenge is to put down some of your “sugary treats” and start getting hungry for “God’s meal” that He has prepared for you. Don’t be satisfied for things that won’t satisfy.

Dear Jesus, grow a hunger in us for the food You provide. Show us that the things we feed ourselves though enjoyable in the moment may be poisoning us in the long run. Your food is pure and will give us the necessary energy and nourishment we need to survive each day. Thank you for this. Amen

Day 31: Original 50 Days of Pray Revisited

Thought on Day 31: This day reminds me of Francis Chans Video on the Rope.  We think our ropes are really short, but the rope (life) is an eternity, we just don’t see past our daily lives and our dreams. When we open our eyes to see that there is more to life we can understand the importance of telling others about Jesus.

15 March 16

DAY THIRTY-ONE

“You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule. (Matthew 5:3 MSG)

This seems like a contradiction compared to how we throw around the phrase end of our rope. Jesus saw it as a teaching tool, to tell us that when we feel like this that God is there to help us out. That although we see our rope at its end we don’t see that the rope is longer than we would ever know and God has a firm grip on it all. We don’t see how much He is helping us with our problems.

Dear Jesus, help us to trust that the end of our rope isn’t anywhere near the end of the rope You are holding with us. Don’t let go, cause without You, things will pull us around. Thank You for being with me every step of the way. Amen.