Sunday, 28 August 2016

Nothing on earth satisfies

We came into this world with nothing and we will leave with nothing. Every single thing that we have is a blessing from God.

Source: bible-quote.deviantart.com
Recently at our church we received a number of teachings on ‘the meaning of life  (beginnings and ends)’. These teachings can be accessed via this link to our website (MCF Message Online). God blessed me in these teaching to learn that the purpose of my life on earth is to Glorify God and that I will be spending my life in all eternity giving Glory to his Majesty.  These teachings really spoke to me. It was hard to stop myself from shouting out ‘Amen’ to almost every word from the Pastor’s mouth as he obediently spoke out God’s Words from the pulpit.

I am a married woman of 30 years to a man whom I love, I have a lovely daughter and a wonderful son and I must not forget my adorable but somewhat challenging dog. However even with all of these most amazing blessings from God I know in my heart that outside of God, my life has no meaning. Some scriptures that comes to mind as I try to explain what I mean are 1 Timothy 6:7 ‘for we brought nothing into the world and we can take nothing out of it’ and Genesis 3:19 ‘…. For you are dust and to dust you shall return….’. This tells me that we came into this world with nothing and we will leave with nothing. Every single thing that we have is a blessing from God.

Source: www.theflowingwell.com
The book of Ecclesiastes is a book in the Old Testament that tries to spare future generations the misery of seeking foolish, meaningless, materialistic emptiness and to discover truth in searching after God; Ecclesiastes 12:13 ‘…have reverence for God and obey his commands, because this is all that human beings were created for…’. Nothing on this earth will ever satisfy, no relationship, no holiday, no car, no money, no house, absolutely nothing. The deepest longing within my soul is to seek God and I cannot be satisfied with anything else. That is not to say that my heart is truly overwhelmed with gratitude to God for all the amazing blessings and miracles that have been provided in my life. So I asked God ‘what does my life actually mean?’, because His Word tells us that He has a plan and purpose for every single human life; Jeremiah 29:11 ‘For I know the plans I have for you’, says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope’. The answer I was searching for was given to me in the meaning of life teachings as discussed earlier. My life is to Glorify God, to bow down and worship the King of Kings for all eternity, Amen.

I then asked God ‘how do I glorify you with my life?’ The answer I believe I received was really simple, His voice just gently whispered, ‘by loving me’. ‘What does that mean I thought?’ and then another answer came.  ‘Tina you need to be free to allow the love and adoration you feel for me to spill over into every single area of your life. For your life to be a Blessing to others in all things, as a wife, a mother, an aunt, a daughter, a cousin, a friend, a sister, in your job, when you go to the shop, when you walk the dog, when you are cooking, cleaning, ironing’, the list seemed endless.

I am saved by God’s amazing wonderful grace. Praise God. I am going to spent all eternity worshipping the King of Kings, He has set me free, the prison door has been thrown open, my name is written in the book of life, how can I not but shout with joy as l tell the whole world the good news. This is how my life will glorify God, by bringing God’s heavenly kingdom here on earth, Amen.

Our Church is currently studying the Fruit of the Spirit; Galatians 5:22-23 ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law’These teachings are also available on our website (MCF Message Online). God is teaching us in these studies to keep in step with the Holy Spirit so that He can guide us. We must always be ready to give an answer to everyone who asks the reason for our joy and our hope; we must do this with gentleness, love and respect. 1 Peter 3:15 ‘But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect’.

My prayer for my life to God is; God I love you with every single beat of my heart, I love you with every breath that I breath, you are the most amazing Abba Father, thank you for the sacrifice of your beloved Son Jesus Christ, thank you for the gift of the blessed Holy Spirit who helps to strengthen and support me in all things. Please help me to always come in the name of the Lord and be a true ambassador for your son Jesus.  Wherever I am help me to always share your love with everyone, help me to have a servant’s heart like your son Jesus and help me to be a blessing to others. Life is a pilgrimage and as I travel through it, it is my greatest heart’s desire to bless you Abba Father as you are always blessing me. Thank you Father God. ‘I love you so much’.

Luke 1:74-75 ‘…..enable us to serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness before him all our days’. Amen.


Author: Christina O’Neill

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Sunday, 21 August 2016

How satan attacks us

Stand firm, friends. When Satan attacks, remember that our enemy is already defeated and we are victorious in Christ!

Source: likesuccess.com
'Have you gone through a period of time in your life where you had one crisis, then another, and then another’? Then a few little problems get thrown in for good measure, and you think, ‘Seriously?! You are kidding me, right? I cannot deal with this one more thing (this broken down car, this repair bill, this flood of water) on top of what I am going through here!’ Yet, we do have to deal with it, because this is life.

Is it possible this is how Satan attacks us? - A couple years ago, our family was heavily involved in ministry at church. With my husband Mike being a pastor, we are always busy with church ministry, but during this period of time, his ministry was especially involved. I was also heading up an Outreach program that was working to go out into our community in new and interesting ways to serve and tell people about Jesus. It was an exciting time, and I absolutely loved what I was doing. I woke up every day thrilled to start working on this ministry. Yet suddenly things started breaking down at home. One teen went through an emotional crisis. Another child hit a huge roadblock at school. Then our whole family went through a series of illnesses including the flu hitting our entire family on Christmas Eve. It was one of those seasons of ‘Seriously, Lord!’ I felt that if one more thing came at our family, I would melt into a puddle of Mom-mess, and it wouldn’t be pretty. I was sharing all this with a good friend, and she told me, ‘you can’t really be surprised at all this. Look at the great ministry you are doing. Of course Satan is going to attack you. He wants nothing more than to see you fail. He doesn’t want to see you grow God’s kingdom.’

Source: itisbygrace2.com
This is why it’s so important for us to be together in fellowship with other Christians, both at worship and in relationships. We need these reminders on a regular basis. Satan loves to hit below the belt. He will strike at what matters to us most in the entire world, and for me that’s my family. When my ministry is going at it’s best, I find that suddenly things start to break down in my family. I’ve seen it happen in my life again recently. My speaking engagements and writing opportunities have increased, the Faithful Finish Lines online program is off to a great start with the second group going strong, and Mike and I are loving the work we are doing together — yet other areas of our family life are in strife.

Read Luke 22:31-32 where Jesus says to Simon Peter at the Last Supper, right before his Crucifixion: ‘Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you*, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you** that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers’. The Greek word for ‘you’* at the beginning of the passage is plural, referring to all Christians. The second time ‘you’** is used it refers specifically to Peter. Check out this (Link) for an excellent explanation of this interesting Bible passage. Satan demands us and sifts us — like wheat is sifted, clearing out the good stuff from the bad. Just the thought of that scares me. These are true spiritual battles we are in the midst of every day, and we need to take them seriously. Yet Jesus prayed for Peter and look at the powerful result! Peter did later deny Jesus, but he repented and turned back to God. Prayer is our powerful weapon against our enemy.

What to Do When Satan Attacks Us;

Be Aware. Now I recognise the pattern in my own life. In 2 Corinthians 2:11 it says, ‘in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes’. We must be wise to Satan’s schemes. Our enemy is crafty. He knows our weaknesses and our heart’s deepest desires.

Put on the Amour of God.  Ephesians 6:10-18 explains we have all we need. God has not left us hanging! We have God’s Word, prayer, and faith as our strongest weapons! 'Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.  Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints.’

Create a Circle of Christian Support. We are stronger together. Join with other believers to pray together, encourage, and strengthen each other. In 2 Timothy 1:8-9 God tells us, ‘Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began.’

Stand firm, friends. When Satan attacks, remember that our enemy is already defeated and we are victorious in Christ!

This article has been published with the kind permission of the author. You can find out a little more about Sara and her ministry by visiting her website at the following (Link).


Author: Sara Borgstede

May God bless and enrich your life

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Sunday, 14 August 2016

Working in unity for God’s Kingdom

As a body of Christ we need each other because individually it is extremely difficult, often impossible to do what can be done by a group of people collectively.

Source: www.etsy.com
Psalm 133:1 tells us; ‘How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!’ and when we live and work together in unity that God commands a blessing; Psalm 133:3 ‘..For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore’. As a body of Christ we need each other because individually it is extremely difficult, often impossible to do what can be done by a group of people collectively. The Apostle Paul reminds us in 1 Corinthians 12:27 that all of us together are the body of Christ (the Church) and each one of us, who believe is a part of the body; ‘Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it’.

The body has however been known to misbehave and this inevitably leads to dis-harmony and dysfunction; the brain discounts the heart, the academics discounts the worshippers, the hands criticise the knees, the people of action criticise the people of prayer, the eyes refuse to partner with the feet, the visionary thinkers won’t work with steady labourers. However, understand this, Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 12:21 ‘The eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I don’t need you!’ and the head cannot say to the feet, ‘I don’t need you!’. When our human bodies become sick we become weak and vulnerable, this is also the case for the body of Christ.  The scripture above shows us that in order to remain a strong and healthy body (Church) we must acknowledge that we are one body and every single part is significant and important for the body to be healthy. The mega church needs the smaller church and vice versa, the pastor’s need the missionaries and so on. Co-operation and unity is not just a good idea, it is a scriptural command.

Source: www.pinterest.com
Ephesians 4:3 tells us; ‘Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace’. We have therefore not been called to complain or criticise one another, but to compliment, encourage, uplift and bless one another. In Matthew 18:19-20 Jesus says; ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven’. What an astounding promise that when two or more members of the body come together in agreement, Jesus notices, shows up, hears and answers our prayers. In all of my forty plus years of giving my heart to the Lord my prayer has always been ‘Lord bring Your Church into unity to glorify Your Name’. Not for our own agenda or for selfishness or tradition, but in everything let it be Jesus. Amen.

Ephesians 4:15-16 ‘Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work’. Speaking the truth in love will grow all things unto Him who is the head, Christ. In doing so the whole body will join and knit together according to the effective working by which every part does it’s share, resulting in growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. Praise God for His People, Praise God for His Church, Praise God for Unity and Praise God for Jesus.


Author: Herbert Jean

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Sunday, 7 August 2016

Religion or Faith?

Anything that separates us from the divine love and grace of God is empty religion and has no place among God's elect. Let us be vigilant therefore not to allow the things of the world creep into our lives.

Source: reachingadventistschristiansandothers.wordpress.com
Often we talk with people about Jesus and how He has impacted on, and changed our lives. When I have done this it has sometimes resulted in me getting labeled as a person who is ‘religious’. I really don't mind this badge when it comes from a non-believer, as this is actually a badge of ignorance. In these situations I generally attempt to get across the sense of faith and the personal relationship that I have with God and how this is different to being ‘religious’James 1:27 tells us ‘Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world’. This is very interesting to me, it says nothing about which version of the Bible a person should read, which Church to attend, how often a person should pray or what a person can and can't eat. It speaks to a higher purpose, one that God finds acceptable.

Source: www.pinterest.com
Often we tend to add extra's to the grace and love that God has shown us at the cross of Calvary. We say that a person must be baptised to be saved, or say the sinner's prayer to be saved. While these things may be right and Jesus certainly does say in Mark 16:16 ‘Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned’. It is important to notice that Jesus says ‘whoever does not believe will be condemned’. Jesus does not say ‘anybody who is not this or that’, or who has ‘not achieved this in their lives will be condemned’. Jesus does not give us a long list of do’s and don’ts, or criteria for salvation, just that we believe and are baptised.

When Jesus walked this earth in the form of a man, He often challenged the religious leaders of the day. These leaders had a deep seated sense of religion even to the point of telling Jesus that they knew more about what God requires of them than He did. They simply did not recognise Him and in those days Jews would make sacrificial offerings to God to atone for their sins. However once Jesus made his once and forever sacrifice these rituals and sacrificial offerings become meaningless – there was no reason to continue with them, as Jesus became the perfect sacrifice; Hebrews 10:14-18; ‘For by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy. The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First he says: ‘This is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds’. Then he adds: ‘Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more’. And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary’.

Anything that separates us from the divine love and grace of God is empty religion and has no place among God's elect. Let us be vigilant therefore not to allow the things of the world creep into our lives. 1 Peter 5:8; ‘Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour’.


Author: Anonymous

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