Saturday, April 12, 2008

Who is the Restorer of Souls?

We spend a lot of money and time restoring things we have. Some of you would spend everything you have to restore that classic car in your garage. Others restore antiques and re-upholster furniture. Recently I have given a lot of thought to having my soul restored. I have read the 23rd Psalm hundreds of times.

Psalm 23

A Psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD

When life gets the best of you and your heart is sore, look to Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, to restore your soul. He will comfort every agony of your heart and lead you in the way to go if you will let him. God can give you a new heart that will be stronger and help you through the dark places in your life. Let him restore your soul!

Praise the Lord, O My Soul!

Psalm 146

1 Praise the LORD. [a]
Praise the LORD, O my soul.

2 I will praise the LORD all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.

3 Do not put your trust in princes,
in mortal men, who cannot save.

4 When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
on that very day their plans come to nothing.

5 Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD his God,

6 the Maker of heaven and earth,
the sea, and everything in them—
the LORD, who remains faithful forever.

7 He upholds the cause of the oppressed
and gives food to the hungry.
The LORD sets prisoners free,

8 the LORD gives sight to the blind,
the LORD lifts up those who are bowed down,
the LORD loves the righteous.

9 The LORD watches over the alien
and sustains the fatherless and the widow,
but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.

10 The LORD reigns forever,
your God, O Zion, for all generations.
Praise the LORD.

New International Version

No help is greater, no love is deeper. There is none greater than the Lord God Almighty. Life and death is in his hand. Learning to worship and praise the Lord is the greatest knowledge. To the born again child of God it is the beginning of wisdom . Always remember that the spirit of the Lord dwells in the praises of his people.

Do you need comfort? Praise him! Do you need strength? Praise him! Do you need a friend? Praise him! Whatever your need you will find in the praises of the Lord. He comes close to those who know him and draw close to him.

Where Do I Get My Strength?

Psalm 121

1I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

2My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.

3He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.

4Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.

5The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand.

6The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.

7The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.

8The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

When I think of the dark days in my life I always think of this Psalm. In my darkest moments I always knew that the Lord would never leave me nor forsake me. It is a promise. God does not always work things out in the way that we expect him to do, but everything he does is for our betterment. I do not know why God loves us so much. It is more than I can understand. But this one thing I know, He does love you and care for you.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Oh, Those Church People...

After spending time surfing through the blog list on Christianity I discovered that many of you are truly disillusioned with churches. This disillusionment seems to be across the board and no particular denomination has made much of an impression on some of you. I have lived for God for all of my life from the time I was saved when I was ten years old. That does not mean I never made a mistake. It means I have been forgiven many, many times. The truth of the matter is that a lot of churches suffer from legalism, judgmental attitudes, and hypocrisy. This is a reality. However, that is no reason to walk out on God and put your soul in danger. The church (whatever denomination)will not save you, but you cannot do without it.

Know this, there will always be difficult people in your life. If you are honest, there are people who drive you mad on the job as well as in your personal life. You certainly never decided to stop working because your co-workers got on your nerves or hurt your feelings. What you really need is to spend some time alone with the Lord and get to know Him a little better.

There seems to be the belief among some of you that the only reason we Christians serve the Lord is because we fear going to hell. That might have been a motivation in the beginning, but as time passed a love grew in my life that keeps me from leaving my God. Instead of walking away from God, get to know Him. Find out what He is all about. You will discover that He wants to spend time in your presence. He does not charge you for the privilege, either. No matter how many cliques are in your church, God never will ignore you or turn you away.

Now, I am not saying there should be no rules in the church; of course there are! There are rules every where you go. If you do not think so, try ignoring the stop lights, or park illegally! Every thing you do every day is mandated by someone or some thing. It is hypocrisy to pretend that it is only the church that has rules to live by.

If you are longing for something that you cannot quite define...If you are not quite happy...If you are unfulfilled...,let me offer you Jesus Christ. Forget about churches and meet the one that all the arguments are about. Believe me, your life will never be the same. People come and go, churches come and go, fashions come and go, but Jesus Christ will never change.

Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

There is a life in God that is so blessed, so fulfilled, so intimate, that you will wonder how you ever lived any other way! God Bless!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Yes, I Am a Holy Roller!

I grew up in the days when it was an insult to be called a Holy Roller. Most people could not understand what freedom of worship was all about. Today much of the world has embraced the notion of worshiping God in a more visible and active manner but there are those who cannot understand the concept. Having worshiped in this way all my life, I cannot imagine worshiping in any other way.

Psalms 150: 4
4Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs.

Psalm 100

1Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

2Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

3Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

4Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

5For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

The purpose of worship is to magnify and glorify God. There is no other reason for worship. I am a fan of Jesus Christ. I have no problem getting radical about proclaiming my affection and admiration for the King of Kings. America is a country of fans. People plan their lives around the Super Bowl. They plan tailgate parties, they set aside the entire day with special menus, and some of them decorate their bodies in the chosen colors of the team they love. No one thinks this unusual behavior, and they laugh tolerantly while these people have a great time and display the love for their team. This is team spirit and considered a good thing. Well, I have no problem with watching people have a good time and worship the teams and celebrities they adore. However, as I stated earlier in my post, I am a fan of Jesus Christ. I love him and worship him. So the next time you call me a Holy Roller, remember who I am...a child of the King and proud of it!

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