Month: January 2009

Excellence

Excellence is not an end in itself, rather a means to an end. God gave us His best and gave us a world created with excellence in every way. Our end as believers is the ministry of reconciliation. II Corinthians 5:18.

When we steward our gift and master our medium it allows us to offer our best to God and communicate the excellence of God and His kingdom to the world in a way worthy of the Kingdom. God never said “that’s close enough” and neither should we.

Mastering Our Medium

A.W. Tozer

God has honored human speech by using it as a medium through which to express His message of salvation, first in the inspired Scriptures and afterwards in a thousand languages and dialects among the nations of mankind. Language is the mighty organ upon which may be played the joyous oratorio of redemption for the blessing of men and for the high honor of God.

Among the countless gifts of God, one of the most precious to us is our beautiful, expressive English tongue. That such a gift should be neglected by busy men and women in their wild race to make a living is at least understandable, if unfortunate; but that it should be neglected as well by the ministers of the sanctuary is not only impossible to understand but completely inexcusable.

For the very reason that God has committed His saving truth to the receptacle of human language, the man who preaches that truth should be more than ordinarily skillful in the use of language. It is necessary that every artist master his medium, every musician his instrument. For a man calling himself a concert pianist to appear before an audience with but a beginner’s acquaintance with the keyboard would be no more absurd than for a minister of the gospel to appear before his congregation without a thorough knowledge of the language in which he expects to preach.

Tozer Devotional :: The Alliance

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Kurtis the stock boy and Brenda the checkout girl

I was sent this by a friend I didn’t check the facts but trust the source.
Enjoy:

In a supermarket, Kurtis the stock boy, was busily working when a new voice came over the loud speaker asking for a carry out at register 4.  Kurtis was almost finished, and wanted to get some fresh air, and decided to answer the call. As he approached the check-out stand a distant smile caught his eye, the new check-out girl was beautiful.  She was an older woman (maybe 26, and he was only 22) and he fell in love.

Later that day, after his shift was over, he waited by the punch clock to find out her name. She came into the break room, smiled  softly at him, took her card and punched out, then left.  He looked at her card, BRENDA.  He walked out only to see her start walking up the road.  Next day, he waited outside as she left the supermarket, and offered her a ride home. He looked harmless enough, and she accepted.  When he dropped her off, he asked if maybe he could see her again, outside of work.  She simply said it wasn’t possible.

He pressed and she explained she had two children and she couldn’t afford a baby-sitter, so he offered to pay for the baby-sitter.  Reluctantly she accepted his offer for a date for the following Saturday.  That Saturday night he arrived at her door only to have her tell him that she was unable to go with him. The baby-sitter had called and canceled. To which Kurtis simply said, “Well, let’s take the kids with us.”

She tried to explain that taking the children was not an option, but again not taking no for an answer, he pressed.  Finally Brenda, brought him inside to meet her children.  She had an older daughter who was just as cute as a bug, Kurtis thought, then Brenda brought out her son, in a wheelchair.  He was born a paraplegic with Down Syndrome.

Kurtis asked Brenda, “I still don’t understand why the kids can’t come with us?”  Brenda was amazed. Most men would run away from a woman with two kids, especially if one had disabilities – just like her first husband and father of her children had done.  Kurtis was not ordinary – – – he had a different mindset.

That evening Kurtis and Brenda loaded up the kids, went to dinner and the movies. When her son needed anything Kurtis would take care of him.  When he needed to use the restroom, he picked him up out of his wheelchair, took him and brought him back.  The kids loved Kurtis.  At the end of the evening, Brenda knew this was the man she was going to marry and spend the rest of her life with.

A year later, they were married and Kurtis adopted both of her children. Since then they have added five more kids.

So what happened to Kurtis the stock boy and Brenda the check-out girl?  Well, Mr. & Mrs. Kurt Warner now live in Arizona , where he is currently employed as the quarterback of the National Football League Arizona Cardinals and has his Cardinals in the hunt for a possible appearance in the Super Bowl.  Is this a surprise ending or could you have guessed that he was not an ordinary person.

It should be noted that he also quarterbacked the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI.

He has also been the NFL’s Most Valuable Player twice and the Super Bowl’s Most Valuable Player.

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The Greatest

Muhammad Ali called himself the greatest,

When asked what great means, he responded;

“Great is never looking down on those that look up to you.”

Jesus said if you want to be the greatest you must be the servant of all.

Let’s all compete to see who can be the greatest this year.

H.T. Lance Armstrong

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Created to Praise

When I used to lead worship every Sunday I would often have people say to me “I just don’t worship that way” meaning outward and enthusiastic. They would say I have a heart of worship or I’m just a quiet person.

The question I always struggled with was can we say “I just don’t worship that way”? This is a great response from Gloria Copeland. I would love your thoughts.

Created to Praise Gloria Copeland

Let every thing that hath breath praise the Lord. Praise ye the Lord.– Psalm 150:6

We’re created to praise God. Some people don’t know that. When the praise service starts, they sit back and say, “I’m not comfortable with all that singing and shouting. I guess praise is just not my thing.

“Yes it is! According to the Bible, if you breathe, you were meant to praise.

And don’t try to slip by with saying, “Well, I have praise in my heart.” That’s not enough. The Word says you need to have it in your mouth as well! (Ps. 34:1) Psalm 132:9 says, “Let thy saints shout for joy.” You can’t shout and be quiet at the same time.

When you first begin to truly praise, it may seem awkward to you, but if you’ll keep it up, it will become a way of life. Why? Because praise causes the glory of God to manifest in your life. It causes you to walk in the light of His countenance (Ps. 89:15). It will start a revival inside of you!

“But, Gloria, if I start to praise like that, people will think I’m some kind of fanatic.”

Well, good! Did you know that every revival in history has been started by people the world considered absolute fanatics? God does things differently than the world. So when you set aside your inhibitions and start letting His Spirit operate through you, you’re going to look strange to those who are strangers to His ways…but you’re going to look wonderful to the Lord!

And, by the way, don’t just think of praising Him in the congregation. Praise Him in your own private prayer time and throughout your day. Learn to maintain an attitude of praise and thanksgiving. When praise becomes natural to you in your own private life, it won’t be difficult to praise Him in the midst of the congregation.

Are you longing for a revival of God’s presence in your life? Are you tired of just hearing about the glorious manifestations of His power in the past? Then open your mouth and your heart and do what God has created you to do. Praise!

Scripture Reading: Psalm 150

Kenneth Copeland Ministries | From Faith to Faith Daily Devotional

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What Pleases God?

Life is a gift » Blog Archive » What Pleases God?

My friend Ken Verheecke is a full time Christian Artist, Musician based in western South Dakota. On his blog Life is a gift he posted from his Message Board Community Heartcall this excellent list of verses regarding what pleases God. I hope you enjoy it.

I found this collection of verses about “what pleases God?” today and found it very enlightening:

I read in Ephesians 5:10 where it says in the NIV, “and find out what pleases the Lord.”

What pleases the Lord?

  • Hebrews 11:6: And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
  • Hebrews 13:16: …and do not forget to do good and share with others for with such sacrifices, God is pleased.
  • Romans 12:1-2: Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God, which is your reasonable service. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.
  • Psalm 69:30-31: I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving. This will please the Lord more than an ox, more than a bull with its horns and hoofs.
  • Micah 6:7-8: Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
  • I Timothy 5:4: But if a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God.
  • I Timothy 2:1-3: I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone– for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior,
  • Colossians 1:10-13: And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,
  • I Thessalonians. 4:1-12: Finally, brothers, we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living. Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more. For you know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you. For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit. Now about brotherly love we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other. And in fact, you do love all the brothers throughout Macedonia. Yet we urge you, brothers, to do so more and more. Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.
  • Galatians 6:7-8: Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
  • Romans 15:2-4: Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.” For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
  • 1 John 2:17: The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.

Life is a gift » Blog Archive » What Pleases God?

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