Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I Recommed These Blogs...

1 - (therebelution.com) The Rebelution by Alex and Brett Harris. If you have not yet checked out this amazing movement by 2 very godly young men committed to God's word, then you are surely missing out! They direct the main thrust of their message towards teens, but it is surely not just for teens! The material you will find on this site, whether written by the Harris twins or others, is excellent, gospel-centered, and will prove beneficial to people of any age. As a matter of fact, today marks Alex and Brett's 20th birthday. The most recent post, "Turning Twenty", was a great reminder that the Do Hard Things message does not end once you stop being a teenager. But rather, the struggle has only just begun. Brett's article contained some very encouraging words for those of us about to enter or just begin the twenty years.

2 - (firstimportance.org) - Of First Importance: Living Each Day in the Good of the Gospel. I recently stumbled across this neat blog run by three Christian men from BC. Each day is posted a cross-centered quote to help its readers "remember what's of first importance - the gospel of Jesus Christ". As their "About Us" page states, "We’ve all spent far too much time looking inward instead of upward (Col 3:1), only to futility and despair. This blog was born out of our own need to live each day in the good of the gospel." It does our souls good to be reminded every day of the blood of the Savior that was poured out for our salvation and redemption! Today's quote by Charles Spurgeon is particularly good.

3 - (theblazingcenter.com) - The Blazing Center: Connecting God's Truth With Real Life by Mark and Steven Altrogge. A truly wonderful blog by a father-son duo with a love for the gospel and the glory of God. Each post is good to feed and meditate upon, and no matter what the topic, it seems as if every post is consistently brought back to "the blazing center" (the Cross of Christ). The latest post - "5 Surefire Ways to Ruin Your Devotions" may be a bit humorous but it sure is convicting.

What blogs do you enjoy reading?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pray for Election Day

As I'm sure all of you know, Election Day is only two weeks away as of today. As Americans, we face a huge decision. As Christians, we face an even greater challenge of being biblically discerning as we cast our votes. And for many voters, including first-time voters like me, the uncertainties of what lies ahead for our nation can often seem overwhelming and even terrifying. I hope you will join with me in prayer for this day and for our nation in the days ahead.

God of the Nations, We praise you for your eternal sovereignty and goodness. We thank you that not only do you hold the world in your hands, but you hold our hearts in your hands. We think of your words to Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 5:21 "the Most High God rules the kingdom of mankind and sets over it whom he will" and we rejoice! Father, in this time and always, may our eyes be continually upon You. As we look around us and see what looks to be a nation that has forgotten You and is only going further into destruction, help us to look to You, O God, the sovereign King, and remember that You work ALL things together for good to those who love You. (Romans 8:28).

We lift up to you all of Your people in this nation. We pray that you would help us to earnestly seek the wisdom and discernment that is from You and Your Word as we prepare to enter the voting booth. Thank You for the privilege and freedom we have as a nation to choose our own leaders. Let us not take this privilege lightly, but carefully and soberly consider the issues at hand. We pray that all who vote would not go into the polling places blindly, O God, but that all would realize the crucial importance that each individual vote plays in the outcome of this election and the future of our nation. But remind us again that ultimately the decision is Yours. Give us strength to be faithful with what You have entrusted to us.

We also pray for those who are running for the office of president, and other various leadership positions in this nation. We pray for much wisdom and humility to be imparted to them. Lord, save those who are lost and are seeking this position merely for selfish gain. Turn their hearts around to serve the only one true Living God and to forsake their idols of fame and wealth. May they seek Your glory and the good of this nation before their own interests.

O Savior, our souls take great comfort in knowing that our hope does not lie in feeble man. But our hope is in You and in Your cross. Whatever Your glorious will may be for our nation in these coming days, give the hearts of us Your children great delight in our Savior, our only true and everlasting hope both for now and for eternity to come! All glory be to your holy and glorious name! Amen.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Paul's Prayer for the Ephesians

Covenant Life Church of Gaithersburg, Maryland is currently doing a sermon series on the book of Ephesians. I have been listening to them on Sundays via podcast, and I must say they have been very helpful and a great blessing. I have even been working on memorizing Ephesians 1. This past sunday, I listened to Jeff Purswell's excellent message on Eph. 1:15-23. I just wanted to share some of my notes on Paul's prayer. In his prayer, he asks God to deepen the Ephesians' knowledge of Him, and that the Spirit of wisdom and revelation would continue to work in their hearts. Here are 3 ways Mr. Purswell points out that God reveals Himself to His children:

(These are my notes from the sermon, hence they are not quotes, but not my words either.)
1. The hope of His calling (v. 18) - If you are a believer, you are called! You have a glorious hope! (1 Cor. 2:9 "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him"). Lord, show us what awaits! Life forever in Your presence! On that day we will see how every single second in our lives worked to our good! "When our hope lies ahead, our lives will follow." The Spirit produces this hope in our hearts. Let us pray for more of this hope!

2. The riches of His inheritance - (Deut. 4:20 "But the Lord has taken you and brought you out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt, to be a people of His own inheritance, as you are this day.") WE are GOD'S treasured possession! And it is all because of God's choosing, calling, and redemption. Not by any merits of our own. But rather in spite of our demerits! God has loved us! He has chosen sinners as His treasure! I am His and He is mine! This is the noblest and highest calling.

3. The greatness of His power (v. 19) - What is this greatness of God like? Look at v. 20. The power at work in us is the very same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead! We are new creatures in Christ! There is no power so great but Christ is above it ALL! Therefore we have nothing to fear. God's power is greater than all our uncertainties.

Let Paul's prayer and desire be that of our own hearts! Oh that we might know our Lord as we ought!