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When You Want Out of the Perfecting Process

Overcome and sticky notesHave you ever wondered why God tested Adam’s and Eve’s obedience?  He tested them because he wanted something more than innocent people; he wanted perfected people.

Innocence clothed the first humans.  They were guiltless of any wrong doing.  They were like naive military recruits: genuinely a part of the military, but certainly not battle tested.  The first humans’ love for God was real, but imperfect because it was untested. Read More→

Why Jesus Wore Our Crown of Thorns

Love for humans motivated Jesus’ every action, all his behavior and each word. This love for humanity compelled Jesus to wear our crown of thorns so we can wear his crown of blessing. He accepted what He did not deserve so we can experience what we cannot earn. Read More→

Considering Your Certainties


When starting something new, many uncertainties fill our future. So, humans prefer staying with the familiar and the comfortable. We feel secure when surrounded by our friend, “Certainty.”

But certainty isn’t always a good friend; nice, but not always healthy; pleasant, but not always pleasing to the Lord.

In early 1992, Delores and I faced a future filled with seemingly endless uncertainties. The focusing muscles behind my eyes refused to operate normally. Even though I wrote with tall letters and a felt tip pen, focusing exhausted me. Preaching weekends provided temporary ministry but we needed a permanent job. Without a secure income, uncertainty dominated my attention.

One day, during my private time with the Lord, he encouraged me to quit concentrating on uncertainties and begin considering my certainties. Immediately, I realized that the Word presents a multitude of promises he swears to keep. The Word predicts a “certainty-filled” future for the believer! God’s children don’t face an uncertain future at all. Just read the Bible. What does it say about your tomorrows?

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future!”

“There is no lack for those who fear the Lord.”

“He holds victory in store for the righteous.”

“Those who hope in him will not be disappointed.”

“He will never leave us nor forsake us.”

“Commit whatever you do to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.”

“He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed and miracles that cannot be numbered.”

Open BibleOn and on the promises spill from his Word. Friends, remember that “it is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the least stroke of the pen to drop out of…” God’s Word.

Today, have you considered the “certainties” God pronounced?

Scriptures referred to: Jeremiah 29:11; Psalm 34:9,10; Proverbs 2:7; Isaiah 49:23; Deuteronomy 31:6; Proverbs 16:3; Job 9:10; Luke 16:17

Making Sin Sick of You

Several years ago I planted a hibiscus in our flower bed.  With frequent watering and occasional fertilizing the plant grew larger and larger and produced beautiful showy flowers.  My heart often sings to the Creator whose genius designed such beauty! Read More→

Talking Yourself Into Trying

 

Things looked really hopeless for Israel’s tiny army.  Thousands of Philistines marched against King Saul, whose army numbered only about 3,000.  Saul hesitated to attack his vastly superior adversary; day after day he talked himself out of trying to defeat the enemy.  Because his defeatist attitude affected his men, many deserted.  he ended up with a mere force of 600.

Are you talking yourself out of trying to witness?  Have you convinced yourself that there’s no need to try for a job promotion?  Has life convinced you that you’re unqualified to try anything worthwhile?

We want to become Christians who never talk themselves out of trying the impossible.  We want to exercise faith in God, and faith in God talks us into trying.

As Saul continued talking himself out of trying to attack, his son Jonathan talked himself into striking the Philistine forces.  In spite of his father’s cowardice, in spite of the army’s smallness, in spite of the lack of weapons, Jonathan talked himself into trying.

“Come, let’s go over to the Philistine outpost,” 1 Samuel 14:1. With all the odds against him, Jonathan refused to talk himself out of trying.  Where did he acquire such faith?

He considered God his partner. Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf. Nothing can hinder the Lord from saving, whether by many or by few,” 1 Samuel 14:6. Faith in God propelled Jonathan to take action.

What about you, dear friend?  God is your partner on the job, in leading the family, in living the Christian life, in performing Christian service and in facing both pleasant and unpleasant times.  Why not try achieving your dreams?  Spend time talking yourself into trying!

Notice a word Jonathan used when he referred to the Lord.  Perhaps the Lord will act,” 1 Samuel 14:6. Jonathan knew God would act; he just didn’t know how God would act.  Jonathan’s word perhaps merely indicates that he was willing to take a risk rather than talk himself out of attempting the impossible.  We cannot remove the element of risk whenever we move ahead with our plans, our dreams or our ambitions.  People who talk themselves into trying the impossible accept the risks attached to going on with life.

Jonathan chose to place uncertainty in God’s hands.  His trust in God overcame his fear of risk-taking.  He could not see the precise outcome of trying  to succeed.  He could see the Lord, who controls whatever happens when we are willing to try.

When Jonathan acted on his desire to attack the enemy, God moved in his behalf.  The Lord brought about a tremendous victory over the enemies of Israel.

Talk yourself into trying to achieve your own desires.  God stands ready to “fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith,” 2 Thessalonians 1:11.

Faith in God never permits ignorance of the future to impede forward progress.  Faith focuses upon God’s complete knowledge of all upcoming events.

“O my Father, at the end of my earthly life, may your Son present me to your as one conformed to his image!”

Be greatly encouraged,

Pastor James Fields

When Perfect Endings Elude

Life treated Jacob very well.  His favorite son, Joseph, flourished in every way.  Jacob thoroughly enjoyed watching his son become a man.  The future looked very bright; Jacob anticipated a perfect ending to life’s story for Joseph.

But things didn’t turn out very well.  Jacob’s other sons presented physical evidence that a wild animal had killed Joseph.  After assuming that Joseph was dead, Jacob fell into great depression.  “All his sons and daughters came to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted,” Genesis 37:35Read More→

The Lord’s Delight

God’s presence is the source of our joy.  Singing, dancing, playing musical instruments are expression of sincere enthusiasm for God’s nearness, I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight.  I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God,” Psalm 43:4.  David was dancing before the Lord with all his might,” 2 Samuel 6:14. Read More→

Breaking Through the Transition Barrier

God’s need for my presence became paramount in my daily schedule. My priorities for prayer time shifted from asking to praising, from requesting to worshiping the God who loves us. However, these noble priorities were about to be thoroughly tested. Apparently, God wanted to see how determined I was to rebuild my schedule according to his needs, his desires, his expectations, and his joy.

From 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. seemed to be the best time of my day for a private session with the Lord. Our guest bedroom became my place for meeting with God. But here’s what happened. Read More→

A Prayer Guide

Please notice the prayer guide below.  Use it as a tool to help you develop a prayer life.  This pie graph stresses the importance of beginning our communion time with worship, praise and thanksgiving.  Communion prepares us for making requests.  We don’t leave the prayer list out; we just keep  it in its place.

 

You Can Do It

  1. You can be a person God depends on.
  2. You can make requests according to God’s perfect will and in the greatest power.
  3. You can serve as God’s partner in accomplishing divine work.
  4. You can pray more effectively by speaking to God from your human mind and your human spirit.

Click here for more information on my book Leaving Prayer, Entering Communion.

Be greatly encouraged,

Pastor James Fields

Before All Else Fails

Famous last words: “After all else fails, read the instructions.”

God suggests something much better: “Before all else fails, praise.” That’s right, praise for God acts as a preventative for so many human ills.  After all, doesn’t the Lord’s Book of Instruction command us to be constantly praising him?  We praise him for who he is, what he like and for all he does.  This praise for God releases his power against everything that threatens us and those who love us.  The divine power overwhelms many of our enemies before they can lift their hand to strike us. Read More→