Friday, October 30, 2015

Celebrate and Be Glad!

"My son," the father said, "you are always with me, and
everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and 
be glad, because this brother of yours was dead, and is
alive again; he was lost and is found." (Luke 15:31-32)

"There's a story about a man who dreamed that he went
to a great palace, and was joyfully greeted at the door;
then he went in, and at each successive room he entered,
he was, each time, even more joyfully received. At last
he entered into the presence of a great monarch and
was there received with great acclimation. It is more than
that with the believer in Christ!

The prodigal son entering the Father's house demonstrates
the nature of our salvation. It is not simply for my benefit
that I am there, but God has a delight in having me there...
Love delights to have me in its company.

If a Christian's need was the measure of Christ's work,
human joys would be enough--but when divine love is
the measure--the Father's house and the joys therein are
the only thing that will satisfy.

It is the Father's good pleasure that His house be filled,
therefore, "We had to celebrate and be glad because this
brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost
and is found." That is why the reception of the believer
in Christ is so satisfying and completely full of joy.
Every believer now has a home there. We are dwelling
on the joyful gain which is ours at the finish--what we
are ultimately saved to."

JB Stoney 1814-1897

Reader, Oh, how I need to ponder the Father's love daily.
When things are going badly and my emotions tank, I
do not consider that His love never changes towards me;
if I was at that moment, caught by death, His joy in
seeing me would be bright and glorious because it is not
based on my behavior. We are all prodigals who have
been set apart and bought with a price and destined to
enter into joy unspeakable and full of glory!

"You will know the truth and the truth will set you free!"
Begin today to live in the truth and rejoice.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The End of the Spear

They are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of 
Christ. (2 Corinthians 8:23)

"I walked out to the hill just now. It is exalting, delicious.
To stand embraced by the shadows of a friendly tree
with wind tugging at your coattail and the heavens hailing
your heart, to gaze and glory and to give oneself to God,
what more could a (Christian) ask?

Oh, the fullness, pleasure, sheer excitement of knowing
God on earth. I care not if I never raise my voice again
for Him, if only I may love Him, please Him.

Perhaps, in mercy, He shall give me a host of children
that I may lead through vast star fields to explore His
delicacies whose fingers' ends set them to burning. But
if not, if only I may see Him, smell His garments, and
smile into my Lover's eyes, ah, then, not stars, nor children,
shall matter--only Himself.  Jim Elliot

Reader, many of you have not heard of Jim Elliot who
was killed along with his four companions by the Auca
Indians of South America in 1956. Jim was but 29 and
as yet none of that tribe had been won to Christ. Shortly
after the massacre, many of the Auca Indians came to
Christ through the ministry of Jim's wife,  Elizabeth Elliot,
who wrote the book, Through Gates of  Splendor. The story
is dramatically told in a film called: The End of the Spear.
The full length movie made it to the local theaters and is
one of my favorites. I would say that the death of these
missionaries was the impetus for thousands deciding to
go to places where no one had heard of Jesus.

Monday, October 26, 2015

A Little Thing?

"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive 
us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 
(1John 1:9)

"Christian, how you think lightly of sin. Take heed, lest
you fall, little by little. Sin, a little thing? Is it not a poison?
Who knows its deadliness? Sin, a little thing? Do not the
little foxes spoil the grapes? Do not little strokes fell mighty
oaks? Will not continual droppings wear away stone? Sin,
a little thing? It girded the Redeemer's head with thorns and
pierced His heart! It made Him suffer anguish,bitterness and

Could you weigh the least sin in the scales of eternity, you
would flee from it as from a poisonous snake, and abhor
the least appearance of evil. Look upon all sin as that which
crucified the Savior, and you will see it to be exceeding sinful.

As for our own faults (flesh patterns), it would take a large
slate to hold the account of them; but thank God we know
where to take them (To the cross) ,and how to get the better
of them."
Charles Spurgeon.1834-1888

Reader, sometimes I need to dip into the writings of Christians
from a previous century in order to grasp a concept that seems
to be missing in the teachings of today. Repentance simply
means to turn around and go in a different direction. When we
turn, there is Jesus with His arms open wide ready to clasp us
to His breast. When we get caught up in a sinful pattern we
move away from God.  He does not move away from us!

Friday, October 23, 2015

A Composite

Well, today I pulled out my Bible to search out the
scriptures that seem to point to this time. Here is
a summary of parts of Matt 24; Mark 13; Luke 21:

"See that no one leads you astray
Many will come saying, 'I am the Christ'
Wars and rumors of wars
Nations--people groups--will rise against nations
Great earthquakes in various places
Terrors and great signs in the heavens
Famines and pestilence
These are but the beginning of birth pangs
You will be hated by all for my names sake
You will be persecuted
You will be delivered up by relatives and friends
The end will not be at once.
This gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed 
  throughout the whole world as a testimony to
  all nations, and then the end will come."

What a collection of the "signs of the end of the
age." For the Believer it is not a time for fear,
closing up shop and moving to an island. Just
before  WW2, a man looked over the world to
find a refuge and decided to move to an island
in the Pacific--he chose Guadicanal!

We are to remain in the Vine and rest in the fact that
God says, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you."
We are to occupy until He comes to get us.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Nearing Midnight

Yesterday I was glad that I took the time to worship
at sunrise. My heart was fixed even as I read the

Will CA be toast? Warning comes because of the
200 plus quakes that hit San Ramon area yesterday.

Robots cheaper than any human worker

Twelve nations have drones flying over Syria

The looming military showdown in South China Sea

Heavy snow warning: Worst El Nino in history
   means UK faces winter white-out

World turning against Jerusalem

UN Chief tries to calm Israel-Palentinian violence

Ebola worst infectious disease in the world--in
a class of its own.

Olaf strengthens to a major hurricane, still far off

Volcanoes today: Karymasky, Dukono,
Piton de la Fournaise, Batu Tara, Sinabung,

WOW! So are we to run and hide in despair? No! We
are to continue living lives of hope and fullness
because the One who dwells within is as calm as a
poached egg. It helps to read the headlines with an
open Bible. In the next few blogs I will explore a few
verses and you will see Who is really in charge of the
events that swirl around us.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Awaken the Dawn

It is 7AM and my eyes fly open. The room is pitch
black. Is it raining? Foggy? No, it is still an hour 
before sunrise! When did this happen? Very quickly
it seems.

As I stood at the window watching the sky begin to
lighten in anticipation of the sunrise, my heart
began to sing--

"When morning gilds the sky
my heart awakening cries.
'May Jesus Christ be Praised!'

David breaks into song in Ps 57:

"My heart is steadfast, O God,
My heart is steadfast!
I will sing and make melody!
Awake, my glory!
Awake, harp and lyre
I will awaken the dawn!
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among
       the peoples;
I will sing praise to you among the 
For your steadfast love is great to the 
Your faithfulness to the clouds.
Be exalted, O God, above the heavens
Let your glory be over all the earth!

Reader, awaken the dawn with praise. Make
melody to the Lord in your heart. And,
because the sun sleeps longer these days,
you don't even have to get up early!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Stormy Weather

Not long ago I had a rather vivid dream. Since I rarely
remember dreams, this one caught my attention. So
did the content. However, I then forgot about it--
until today.

The Dream
I was at a beach on a dark windy day. I walked out
on a sandbar and stood watching the roaring water
at my feet. I knew it was over my head, and I knew
that the Lord wanted me to jump in and swim to the
other side. No "other side" was in view as the sky
darkened. I stepped into the water and as it went over
my head, I started to swim. Instantly I was on the
other side. Blue sky overhead; calm water lapped at
the sandy beach. People were laughing and shouting as
they played ball. I walked to land.

Today I read this in John 6:
"When evening came, his disciples went down to the
sea, got into a boat, and started across the sea to
Capernaum. It was now dark and Jesus had not yet
come to them. The sea became rough because a
strong wind was blowing... They saw Jesus walking
on the sea and coming near the boat and they were
frightened. But He said to them, 'it is I; do not be
afraid...' they took Him into the boat and immediately
the boat was at the land to which they were going."

Reader, look at the scripture. It is windy, dark and the
sea is rough. Be honest, as you look at world events,
does it not seem as though night is falling--and 'where
IS Jesus, anyway?' He is right there in the dark and in
the wild waves. He says to you, "it is I, be not afraid."
Your circumstances can change, instantly...

Friday, October 16, 2015

High Over All

God has...given Him a name which is above every name.
(Phil 2:9)

There is a reader out there who needs this message!
Read the words and then tap into the music...

Jesus! the name high over all,
In hell, or earth, or sky;
Angels and men before it fall,
And devils fear and fly.

Jesus! the name to sinners dear,
The name to sinners given;
It scatters all their guilty fear,
It turns their hell to heaven.

Jesus! the prisoner's fetters breaks,
And bruises Satan's head;
Power into strengthless souls it speaks,
And life into the dead.

O that the world might taste and see
The riches of his grace;
The arms of love that compass me
Would all mankind embrace.

His only righteousness I show,
His saving grace proclaim;
'Tis all my business here below
To cry: Behold the Lamb!

Happy, if with my latest breath
I might but gasp his name;
Preach him to all, and cry in death:
Behold, behold the Lamb!
Charles Wesley

Thursday, October 15, 2015

How Do I Walk With God?

As a continuation from yesterday's discussion of what it
means to be a 'not," Mike addresses a very real question.

"Walking with God, and how we do it depends on two things:
(and how important it is to not mix them up!)

1 What must I do because God refuses to do it for me?
2 What must I not do, for God alone will do it for me?"

"In Luke 15 we see the Prodigal Son coming to his senses
before dying of hunger. 'I will go to my father, though I 
am not worthy, and ask him to make me a hired man.' How
many of us see other believers full and we hunger? The
Prodigal lost his image, he got up and went, he showed up
and the father filled him with his image by running,
embracing, and restoring his son.

After you show up, you listen. Luke 12:12, 'the Holy Spirit
will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say...'
When you hear a teaching it isn't creating something new in
you but revealing what has already been in you. You have
everything pertaining to Life in you in Christ.

As you hear truth, you hear the divine 'Uh huh' in you, for
'My sheep hear My voice....'"

Once you have shown up and heard the Lord, preach your
gospel, no one els's. Own it"

As I came to the end of the article and read that we must not
preach something that belongs to someone else unless we
first own it and make it our own, I sat there and pondered this
statement for 'to teach that which we do not 'own,' is to be a
hypocrite. Ouch!

So, reader, wrestle with what you hear and stay with it until
you hear the voice of the Shepherd speak the 'Uh huh.'

Aside note: I discovered on Face Book yesterday that Mike
Wells died on October 11, 2011. It was the day that God
gave me the idea of a website and blog. I called a friend on
the 13th to tell her what I was going to do and how I was
going to write to Mike and let him know. Mary said, "Mike
has died. He developed a respiratory infection in an out of
the way area of South America and died in the night." I felt
such a sting of loss. Though I had never met him his letters
detailing his journey's were so transparent and real that it
seemed that we must be friends. He helped me to become

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Glory Sullied

Michael Wells of Abiding Life Ministries is now enjoying
the fruit of his labor for God took him while on a
missionary journey to the least of these. He introduced
me to a whole new aspect of the word, 'Christian:'

"Christ in me the hope of glory."

So, I am now on a treasure hunt through scripture, through
the changes in circumstances, relationships, and losses, to
find out what this means. How do I live the Christian life?
By whose power do I live the Christian life? How does my
failure affect God, affect me? What about the law?

Yesterday I reread an excerpt from Disc 1 of
"Simple Foundations," by Michael Wells. He says:

"Christianity is unbelievably simple. At times we are
overwhelmed by the world, but we know simply
changing our focus to Christ, we overcome the world..."

"And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God
took him."

"The goal of Christianity is to walk with God and grasp
Him and become 'a not' to have all the assurance and
confidence we want in Him. Too often we use God 'to
become' and build our image as somebody special. Where
we hold our image and identity, we are a threat to the
glory of God, for that is the seat of our pride. God isn't 
interested in our image, but in His image in us. We
experience failure where we hold our image in any area
of our lives..."

"How big is our God? The goal of Christianity is not in
becoming, but in the not, which is the natural result of
walking with Him. 'Not I, but Christ..."

You, dear reader, are on this journey with me as you read
my blogs. Tomorrow I will share a little more from this
lesson. In the meantime you can check out the
Abiding Life website for a variety of helpful info:

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Glory Filled

Ah, reader, did you know that you were chosen in Him
before the world was formed, before sin entered? We
have been brought into Him by the shedding of His
blood, to be one with Him in glory!

What does it mean for us in our daily lives? In
Isaiah 62 God lays out the promises for His people.
First to the Jews, then to the believing Gentiles:

"You will be called by a new name
You will also be a crown of beauty--a jeweled crown
You will no longer be called, 'forsaken'
Nor will it be said of you, 'desolate'
But, you will called, 'My delight is in you!"

Read it again. This is your identity. This is who you
really are!

As I was pondering the blog for today, God put a
song in my heart and I found it on You Tube.
Listen to the video. The visual is pretty lame.
Some of you may remember this old chorus.

"Heaven came down and glory filled my soul.
When at the cross the Savior made me whole.
My sins were washed away
My night was turned to day.
Heaven came down and glory filled my soul."

Monday, October 12, 2015

Behold The Word!

What word?

We have a friend who closes his letters and notes with
the word, "glory." Ten days ago I started to really look
at this word and last week's blogs flowed from this.
Now it seems that everywhere I look in scripture this
word pops up. Surely His glory is dressed in vibrant
colors of gold, purple, fire red; the blues of the sky;
the magenta of sunset!

Hit pause and breath in the Word:

...behold, the glory of the Lord appeared in fire
...the appearance of the glory of the Lord was 
        like a consuming fire on the mountain top.
The glory of the Lord filled the Tabernacle
The glory of the Lord appeared unto them
The heavens declared the glory of God.
The God of glory thunders
His glory above all the earth
The whole earth shall be filled with His glory
The glory of the Lord shall endure forever
The glory of the Lord shall be revealed
His glory from the rising of the sun
I will set my glory among the heathen
His glory covers the heavens
Power and glory forever
And the glory of the Lord shone 
Exceeding and eternal weight of glory.

Ah, reader, I am speechless in the presence of His

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Cracked Pots

Yesterday we saw how we are being transformed
in the presence of the Lord--His glory within.
In 2 Corinthians 4:7, Paul says this:

"We have this treasure in jars of clay, to show the 
surpassing power belongs to God and not to us."

What an incredible verse! Treasure, clay jars,
surpassing power, God's, not ours.

"We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed.
perplexed, but not driven to despair,
persecuted, but not forsaken,
struck down, but not destroyed."

The power we need really is surpassing, is it not?
We live in a world that increasingly hates us.
Life itself batters the outer man, and aging has
such a huge impact. The clay pot gets scratched,
pieces break off, even holes appear! But wait,
does not His glory come through with greater
clarity due to all the wear and tear?

Dearest reader, take heart. You may be a cracked
pot, but your beauty and value comes from the
glory within. You shine! (But you will never see

Tuesday, October 6, 2015


Behold means to fix the attention, to attend, to gaze

In 2 Corinthians 3 Paul tells us that "our lord is a Spirit
who brings freedom."
"And we, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the
Lord, are being transformed into the same image from
one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the
Lord who is the Spirit."

The key word here is "beholding." How do we do this?
It is taking a block of time with the Lord. No agenda,
but to be in His presence with His love letter--the Bible.
It is reading until something comes alive and then to
let that be the spring board for listening, responding.
It is to wallow in His goodness.

Yesterday we looked at how we bear his image, His
glory. It is part of our position in Christ. Today our
focus is on the transformation within that comes
through communication, daily intimacy.

Reader, don't let the urgency of the hour take you
away from that which is essential to Life.

The Frame Removed

(If you have not looked at the previous blog, check
it out before reading this one)

Yesterday I spent some time talking about the glory
of God becoming our glory out of John 17.

Today I am returning to the Garden of Eden where
God said, "it is good." No death, sickness, hurts,
accidents, nothing to cause fear, isolation. The
couple was placed in the Garden by God Himself
who met with them intimately in the cool of the
day. There was no lack. But, danger entered the
garden in the form of a beautiful reptile whose
name was Lucifer, Light Bearer. His object was to
deceive Eve and cause her to separate herself from
God, from His glory, from that picture. She did not
know that her glory, came from God just as the glory
of the frame comes from the picture it surrounds.
The snake told Eve that she, in herself, could have
glory independently of God. She could be her own
god. You see, reader, sin is not what we do but who
we become when we separate ourselves from the
Source of our glory. Sins follow. That seed of
rebellion, taking the glory to oneself, was passed
down from Adam through the generations. Each
lives out his life separated from God until he
recognizes that he has no glory, that life is a sham.
Before Jesus went to the cross He told the disciples
that they would be given the glory that Christ had
received from His Father, that Christ would dwell
in them just as God dwelt in His Son. When we
come to God in repentance we come home to the
picture where we belong. It is our position now
and not based on our behavior.

God says in Isaiah 62 that He does this for the
  • You will get a new name
  • You will be a jeweled crown, a crown of beauty
  • You will no longer be called "forsaken."
  • Or called "desolate."
  • You will be called, "My delight."
Reader, if you want to get a fuller picture of your glory
in Christ then go to the website of Malcolm Smith
and click on the webinar: "You are glorious"

Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Glorious Frame!

The seventeenth chapter of John has glory as a
central theme. Have you ever pondered this one?

"The glory that you have given to Me, I have
given to them...I in them and You in Me."

First of all, what is the meaning of this shining word,
"glory?" It means "heavy, weighty, to lay heavily,
dense, abounding with..."  There is nothing
frivolous about the ancient Hebrew when it comes
to glory. Over and over this adjective is given to
God. In the verse above Jesus says that God's glory
is ours! How can this be?  Recently, I came across
an analogy that was helpful to me. Think of God's
glory as a picture, around which is a plain wooden
frame, ordinary, common. But when the frame is
placed around the picture it comes to life in a
marvelous way. The glory coming from the picture
impacts the frame. The two become one.

"I in them, You in Me." When God's glory comes
into us and resides there, we become partakers of
His glory. Just like the common frame, we go
about living a common life; getting dinner, going
to work, playing with the children, cleaning toilets--
all the while God's glory is pouring into us as light
and life. You see, dear one, behavior does not define
who you are. Behavior flows from who your are in
reality. The frame gets a new identity from the
picture it surrounds. We receive a new identity the
moment we respond to God's love through
Jesus Christ our Savior. Jesus says,
"I give to them my glory," before we have lifted
a finger to deserve it--as if we ever could!

Dear reader, You are a glorious frame!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Good People?

" God has said, 'I will dwell in them and walk in 
them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my 
people.'" (2Cor 6:16)

God Himself dwells in us; walks in us. We are His.
An old Saint who now dwells in heaven puts it this

"God's aim and purpose in the Gospel is not to make 
good people, a mere matter of conduct; but rather a 
people so"peculiar" to Himself that He can come and 
live in them and be Himself the regulator of their lives. 
Wonderful! Really, wonderful!

Stated boldly, stripped of superficialities, the Christian
Life is a reincarnation of Christ. He who walked the earth
nineteen hundred years ago, walks in us: "I will dwell in
them, and walk in them." He who once found flesh and
blood expression for Himself in one body now claims a 
similar expression in any body--yours, mine--the bodies 
of all who will believe and receive the benefits of the

The life thus depicted is too wonderful for words. It is
staggering in its possibilities. To think of anyone missing
it!" Norman B Harrison

Reader, think of a car whose engine is running at full
power but the wheels are standing still. The power is
certainly there but something is off in the outworking 
of that power. Reader, get connected to the truth and
live life boldly!