Do Not Discount God’s Forgiveness Of You!

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Well, the holidays and all the crazy shopping are behind us now–Thank God! But imagine passing by your favorite store and seeing that for a limited time only, it was having an incredible 99% Discount Sale on everything? Even if you had plans to be somewhere else far more important than shopping, you would likely adjust your itinerary and make a mad dash for that store; I know I would!

And while 99% off is amazing and hard to pass up for anybody, there is something that you and I need to do all that we can to drive home to the depths of our hearts. We need to be sure to never discount God’s forgiveness of us!

When God forgives you, if you don’t force yourself to believe and then reinforce the behavior that accords with the fact that God’s forgiveness is full and free, you will constantly be taunted by the sneaky whispers of Satan. And what will that old serpent keep repeating to you? It will probably be something like this…

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I’m A Cowboys Fan. But Understand…

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I am a die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan. I also think that Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos is awesome! But understand something: I am a fan of Jesus infinitely above all else. Check out this short video…

Wouldn’t it be nice to reach the pinnacle of your profession just to be able to profess to the world the Name of the One who is The Pinnacle of all creation? GO SEAHAWKS!!

Question: Aside from the fact that both Quarterbacks Russell Wilson and Peyton Manning profess to be Christians, who are you rooting for in Superbowl 48: Broncos or Seahawks? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

GOD Wants Something From Me?

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As I took time to meditate on God’s word this morning, He reminded me of something that I knew all too well, but that I now realize I’ve let slip in so many ways over the years. I have a distinct feeling that it is something to which you can also relate.

In Luke 7:41-50, there is a very short parable given by Jesus to teach who it is that will show the most love. The lesson was that the ones who realize that they have been forgiven the largest debt will be those who have the most love for the one who has forgiven their debts.

He then moves seamlessly into an actual example in a woman whom He had forgiven much, who washed His feet with her tears, kissed them continually, and even anointed them with oil.

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Am I learning how to use my Bible? The way to become complete for the Master’s service is to be well soaked in the Bible; some of us only exploit certain passages. Our Lord wants to give us continuous instruction out of His word; continuous instruction turns hearers into disciples.

Uh, No!

Have you ever seen any of the Nicorette smoker’s gum commercials? You know where someone offers the person trying to quit a cigarette and he or she refuses, then the miniature band pops up singing the Rare Earth song, “I Just Want To Celebrate”? Why do they want to celebrate the person who refused to smoke?

It is because with the help of Nicorette Gum, they are now exercising a power they once did not possess to resist cigarettes. It is a good thing that makes the quitter feel great, and makes life better as health is also improved.

We live in a world where we find ourselves constantly having to say “yes” much more than we would like to. Whether it is saying “yes” to an unyielding, crying child after we have told them “no” more times than we can count, or being forced to say “yes” to a government that is beginning to regulate more of our lives than our Constitution would allow; we are daily and even hourly being bombarded with things that impinge upon our right, freedom, or ability to say “no”.

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Your Personal Mental Story Times

In an audio portion of a course I am taking by Michael Hyatt, he says that “many times we’re dis-empowered by the stories that we are telling ourselves.” As I listened to him expound on that statement a couple of biblical examples popped into my mind.

StoryTime

First, there was the woman named Mary Magdalene. She became a great woman of faith after Jesus had delivered her from demon-possession. After Christ’s crucifixion, she was one of the first people to visit the tomb where His body was laid.

Scripture says that when she discovered Jesus’ tomb was empty, she became distraught and began to weep because she did not know where the Lord’s body was. A man who stood behind her asked her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?”

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That Dude Ain’t No Joke!

Ladies, feel free to replace “dude” with “girl”, “sister” or “woman”. It is just as applicable to you.

During my time off, I watched Rocky Balboa. One part of the movie I loved was when he stood face to face with his much younger opponent (Mason “The Line” Dixon) who said to him, “Its over!”, to which Rocky calmly replied, “It ain’t over till its over.” Dixon snidely retorts, “Where is that from, the 80’s?”, to which Rocky says, “It’s actually more like the 70’s.”

RockyBalboaVSMasonDixon

You see, people will mock you when you dream. But keep calm, and keep dreaming and going for your dream, and in the end, they will all know… “That dude ain’t no joke!!” 

Question: How do you handle people who express doubt about or make fun of your aspirations? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Making Forgiveness For Real

As I lay in bed early this morning before rising, the thought came to my mind of what makes forgiveness real. You see I’ve been deeply hurt by people close to me over the years, but I’ve also come to realize that until at least two things are done, forgiveness is not much more than a noble concept. It has not been birthed out of the realm of reason into reality.

forgivenessYesNo

And while you might be able to come up with something else, I couldn’t get away from these two clear requirements:

  1. It Must Be Given. Forgiveness has a root requirement which is absolutely necessary to help bring it to life. That word is “given”. Forgiveness must first be given. And here’s a little bonus for you: If you “fore” give, that is to say, if you forgive someone even before you have a chance to let them know you’ve forgiven them, it will be much easier to actually tell them that you have forgiven them and mean it. Please read and remember Matthew 6:14-15. 

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