Monday, December 31, 2018

Making the New Year New

“I know what I am planning for you,” says the LORD. “I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.” 

Jeremiah 29:11 (NCV) 


I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me… I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.Philippians 3:12-14 (NIV) 

1. WHAT DO I NEED TO  

PUT OFF

AND WHAT DO I NEED TO  

PUT ON


You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.Ephesians 4:22-24 (NIV) 


The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Romans 13:12 (NIV) 


But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires. Romans 13:14 (NASB, NLT) 


For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Galatians 3:27 (ESV) 

2. WHERE ARE THE  

CLOSED DOORS

AND WHERE ARE THE  

OPEN DOORS


There is a wide-open door for a great work here, although many oppose me. 1 Corinthians 16:9 (NLT)  


“See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut.” Revelation 3:8 (NIV) 


Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia. When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to. So they passed by Mysia and went down to Troas. During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.Acts 16:6-10 (NIV) 

3. WHAT SEEMS  

IMPORTANT

AND WHAT IS TRULY  

IMPORTANT


“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
Matthew 6:25,33 (NIV)  
“Teacher, which command in the law is the most important?” Jesus answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and most important command. And the second command is like the first: ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself.’”Matthew 22:36-39 (NCV)  


What is important is faith expressing itself in love. Galatians 5:6 (NLT) 




Sunday, December 23, 2018

Trusting God's timing in our life

Rick Warren

DECEMBER 22-24, 2018





WHAT JESUS’ BIRTH TELLS US ABOUT GOD’S TIMING

1. GOD HAS A  
Timetable
FOR EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS.


“There is AN APPOINTED TIME for everything, and there is A RIGHT TIME for every activity under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NAB) 


“When THE RIGHT TIME came, God sent his Son to earth, born of a woman and living under the law, so that his Son could pay for our freedom from the law, and adopt us as his children into God’s family!”Galatians 4:3-5  

2. GOD DOES NOT TELL US  

details
IN ADVANCE.


“God has given us a desire to know the future. He always does everything just right and on time, but people can never completely understand what he is doing.”Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NCV)  


Jesus: “You don’t get to know the time. Timing is the Father’s business.” Acts 1:7 (Mes)  

3. GOD IS NEVER  
in a hurry

AND HE’S  
never late


GOD: “The vision WILL happen at the time I have appointed. It moves steadily toward its goal and it will not be proven false. If it seems slow or delayed, just wait for it! It will certainly happen. It will not be late!”Habakkuk 2:3  

4. GOD’S TIMING IS NOT ALWAYS  

convenient for me


“At that time, Caesar Augustus ordered all people under Roman rule to return to their hometown to register in a census . . . So, Joseph took Mary with him to Bethlehem, and by this time she was very pregnant . . . In Bethlehem, the time came for her to have her baby.”Luke 2:1-6  




5. AT THE RIGHT TIME GOD CAN  DO ANYTHING INSTANTLY.  

GOD: “I am the Lord, so when the right time comes, I will make it all happen quickly!” Isaiah 60:22 (TEV)  


GOD: “At the RIGHT TIME I will answer your prayers!” Isaiah 49:8 (NCV) 



WHAT DOES GOD WANT ME TO DO WHILE I WAIT?


Fear not!
Fret not!
Forget not!
Faint not!

1. FEAR NOT... TRUST GOD.

Jesus “Don’t be afraid. Just trust me.” Mark 5:36 (NLT)  


“I trust in you Lord. You are my God and my times are in your hands.” Psalm 31:14-15 (NIV)  


“I pray to you, Lord, so when the time is right, please answer me and help me with your wonderful love.” Psalm 69:13 (CEV)  

2. FRET NOT:   BE PATIENT AND HUMBLE.

“Wait and trust the Lord! DON’T FRET when others prosper or their dishonest plans succeed. And don’t get angry or upset – it only leads to trouble.”Psalm 37:7-8 


“DON'T FRET or worry. Instead of worrying, pray! Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns.” Philemon 4:6 (Mes)  


“Humble yourselves under God’s mighty hand, so that he can lift you up at just THE RIGHT TIME!” 1 Peter 5:6 (TEV)  

3. FORGET NOT:  
STUDY GOD'S PROMISES


“IF you keep looking closely into God’s perfect Word that sets people free, and you keep on studying it, and you DON’T FORGET it, and you put it into daily practice – you will be BLESSED by God in all you do!”James 1:25  


“Happy are those who . . . find joy in obeying the Word of the Lord, and they study it day and night. They’re like trees that grow strong beside a stream, and bear fruit at the RIGHT TIME and whose leaves do not dry up. They succeed in everything they do!”Psalm 1:1-3 (TEV) 

4. FAINT NOT:  
DON'T GIVE UP


“We must never get tired of doing what is right and good, for AT THE RIGHT TIME we will reap a harvest of blessing IF we don’t give up, or quit.”Galatians 6:9 



IT’S ALWAYS THE RIGHT TIME FOR 2 THINGS:

• TO COME BACK HOME TO GOD


“Now is the time to change your ways and come back to God so he can wipe away your sins, and pour out showers of blessing to refresh you.”Acts 3:19 (Mes)  

• TO ACCEPT THE SAVING GRACE OF JESUS


“Jesus gave himself to pay for the sins of everyone. He is the proof that God wants all of us to be saved. And that proof came at the RIGHT TIME.”1 Timothy 2:6 (ICB)  

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Unexpected Joy

UNEXPECTED JOY

The Promise Fulfilled – Part 3

Buddy Owens, Saddleback Church

DECEMBER 15-16, 2018






A PERSPECTIVE TO HOLD

The angels were joyful — Luke 2:10-14 
The shepherds were joyful — Luke 2:20 
The wise men were joyful — Matthew 2:10 
The baby John leaped for joy in his mother’s womb — Luke 1:44 
Mary was joyful — Luke 1:47 
“Mary said, ‘My soul praises the Lord’s greatness! My spirit finds its joy in God, my Savior, because he has looked favorably on me, his humble servant.’”Luke 1:46-48 (GW) 
“Wait with hope for the Lord. Be strong, and let your heart be courageous. Yes, wait with hope for the Lord.” Psalm 27:14 (GW) 

• TO “WAIT WITH HOPE” MEANS TO ANTICIPATE WITH  


joyful confident expectation (not in doubt or distress). 



A PROMISE TO CLAIM

“In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, ‘Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.’ 

“Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.’ 

“‘How will this be,’ Mary asked the angel, ‘since I am a virgin?’ 

“The angel answered, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God.’ 

“‘I am the Lord’s servant,’ Mary answered. ‘May it be to me according to your word.’”
Luke 1:26-38 (NIV) 
“To the praise of the glory of his grace, by which he made us highly favored (accepted) in the beloved.” Ephesians 1:6 (NKJV) 


• GRACE PRINCIPLE: WHEN THE  

Favor (poured out upon you).  

OF GOD RESTS ON YOU, THE  

Power (that you can't generate on your own). 

OF GOD IS RELEASED THROUGH YOU.  

“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.” Acts 1:8 (NLT) 

“[He] is able to do immeasurably more than all we could ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.” Ephesians 3:20 (NIV) 



A PROCESS TO EMBRACE

• PREPARE  
Yourself

“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry . . . You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips . . . You have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator . . . Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts . . . Be thankful . . . Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly . . . Sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.”Colossians 3:5-16 (NIV) 

• PREPARE  
Your environment

“So roll up your sleeves, put your mind in gear, be totally ready to receive the gift that’s coming when Jesus arrives. Don’t lazily slip back into those old grooves of evil, doing just what you feel like doing. You didn’t know any better then; you do now. As obedient children, let yourselves be pulled into a way of life shaped by God’s life, a life energetic and blazing with holiness.”1 Peter 1:13-16 (Message) 

• IS THERE SOMETHING GOD IS WAITING FOR ME TO  


give up

OR  
start up

TO MAKE MYSELF READY FOR HIS ARRIVAL?  

COUNTER-CULTURE KINDNESS

“Make sure you never pay back one wrong with another wrong. Instead, always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.”  1 Thessalo...