GO HOME

GO HOME

In Mark 5:18-20 (NKJV), we read:  And when [Jesus] got into the boat, he who had been demon-possessed begged Him that he might be with Him. However, Jesus did not permit him, but said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He has had compassion on you.” And he departed and began to proclaim in Decapolis all that Jesus had done for him; and all marveled.

He had lost everything, even his own mind. Everything in his life was dead and he was dead to everyone else. He spent what he had left of his life living in the cemetery. Then Jesus came. He had crossed over from the other side to help this man. His family had written him off but God chose to rewrite the story of his life. Jesus set him free.

He was eternally grateful! He had lost all hope but Jesus had loved him back to life. All he wanted was to stay with Jesus. But Jesus wouldn’t permit it. He told him to, “Go home.” It wasn’t enough for this man to experience change because there were more people just like him who still needed help.

“Go home and tell your family and friends what the Lord has done for you,” Jesus told him, “Don’t keep it to yourself.” Our home represents the people we share our lives with. It could be the actual place we live, but it can also be the people we go to school with or work alongside of. They haven’t met Jesus for themselves yet. It’s through your story that they’ll meet Him. Don’t hide your Christianity. Don’t make it so “personal” that you don’t share it with others. Someone needs to hear your story.

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Mark 6

THE END

THE END

In 1 Peter 4:7-9 (TMB), we read:  Everything in the world is about to be wrapped up, so take nothing for granted. Stay wide-awake in prayer. Most of all, love each other as if your life depended on it. Love makes up for practically anything. Be quick to give a meal to the hungry, a bed to the homeless—cheerfully.

Eventually, everything in this world will come to an end. That’s the reminder that Peter is giving to the church – don’t live for this world; it’s temporary. But he doesn’t mention anything about wearing a sandwich board in Times Square, building bomb shelters, storing up ammunition or the zombie-pocalypse. Peter isn’t like Chicken Little screaming at the top of his lungs, “The sky is falling!” He takes a completely different approach.

Take nothing for granted. There’s a difference between the first and fourth quarter. In the first quarter, there’s a lot of time on the clock. You can pace yourself and test your opponent. If they’re up a few points, you can still catch up. But in the fourth quarter, you have less time. You better turn up the intensity. Don’t put off that conversation or that decision because you assume you have “all the time in the world.” You don’t.

Stay wide awake in prayer. Prayer is our connection to God. It’s our lifeline. It keeps our heart beating in sync with His. It keeps us spiritually sober. Don’t get caught up with how long to pray. What’s important is that you pray. As you do, your connection with the Lord grows stronger and you don’t lose sight of His purposes.

Love each other as if your life depended on it. Because it does! Love isn’t just emotional, it’s practical. Love is shown in our actions, not our intentions. Anyone can say that they love God. But that love ought to be seen in how we love one another.

As Christians, taking on these three attitudes is how we ensure that the life we are living now counts for eternity.

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Mark 5

STRONGER THAN YOU THINK

STRONGER THAN YOU THINK

In Romans 4:23-24 (NLT), we read:  And when God counted him as righteous, it wasn’t just for Abraham’s benefit. It was recorded for our benefit, too, assuring us that God will also count us as righteous if we believe in Him, the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.

Abraham’s story was meant to encourage us – to show us that no matter what circumstances we’re facing, no matter how dire things may seem, no matter the mistakes we make (remember Ishmael?), God always fulfills His promises. And yet, after reading about Abraham’s life, some get discouraged. “That was Abraham,” they say, “My faith is nowhere near as strong as his.” And knowing we would struggle with that thought, the Holy Spirit directed Paul to continue writing.

“I’m not just talking about Abraham’s faith,” Paul would write, “I’m also talking about your faith.” Paul would go on to say that anyone who believes that God raised Jesus from the dead has the same kind of faith as Abraham. The world doesn’t believe in the Resurrection. They mock it. But our faith is based on it. We didn’t see the Resurrection personally. We didn’t touch Jesus physically. We just heard about it and God graced us with the faith to believe it happened.

Paul shares that if we have that kind of faith, the kind of faith that believes Jesus rose from the dead even though we weren’t there to see it for ourselves, then we have the same kind of faith as Abraham. If you can believe in the Resurrection, you can believe anything else God says. If you doubt your faith even after you believed in the Resurrection, it’s like running the Boston Marathon and then telling yourself you can’t walk to your mailbox. If you can run a marathon, you can walk anywhere! It’s the same thing with your faith. If you can believe in Jesus’ Resurrection, you can believe anything!  Your faith is stronger than you think!

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Mark 4

YOUR REAR GUARD

YOUR REAR GUARD

Isaiah 58:8 (NIV), states:  Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.

None of us can be in two places at the same time and yet that’s exactly what life seems to demand of us. We spend a lot of time just trying to keep up that many of us feel stretched beyond our capacity. Life can get stressful. And on top of all of that, we have a God-given desire to make our lives count for His purposes. How can we get it all done?

It seems like while we are contending with life on one front, the devil attacks us on another front. It’s like that game “whack-a-mole” – just when you deal with one issue, another one pops up. Carl von Clausewitz once said, “The enemy, while attacking one section of the front, often seeks to outflank and envelop us at the same time. The units which are kept in the  background can meet this attempt.”

Isaiah declared that the “glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.” In other words, God’s got your back. Don’t waste your time asking yourself, “What else can happen to me?” or “I wonder what else will go wrong?” or “How can I possibly get it all done?” The only thing you need to focus on is what’s in front of you now. When you know that your back is covered, that the Lord is your “rear guard”, it frees you to fight what’s in front of you.

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Mark 3

HELP MY UNBELIEF

HELP MY UNBELIEF

In Mark 9:21-24 (NET), we read:  Jesus asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. It has often thrown him into fire or water to destroy him. But if you are able to do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” Then Jesus said to him, “‘If you are able?’ All things are possible for the one who believes.” Immediately the father of the boy cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!”

A father needed help for his son who was physically afflicted. He went to Jesus looking for help, hoping that He could do something. And this man asked the same thing that many of us ask today, “Lord, if You are able…please help.” But something was wrong with this man’s request. He said, “If.” That simple word exposed the man’s heart. He wasn’t sure, he wasn’t convinced, he wasn’t confident that Jesus could do anything. It was a “hail Mary” play.

Jesus told this father, “All things are possible to him who believes.” The one thing Jesus required from this man was faith. The miracle this father needed for his son couldn’t be bought with money. It couldn’t be performed for a favor. It wouldn’t take place for a sacrifice. All Jesus wanted was for this man to believe.

The man immediately repented. He told Jesus, “I believe!” But recognizing that his faith needed more depth to it, he then said, “Lord, help my unbelief.” All of us have faced a situation where we realized that our faith was lacking. It’s like standing at the starting line of a race knowing that you haven’t exercised in a long time. And yet, Jesus didn’t turn this man away. What little faith he had, Jesus used.

Don’t knock your faith. We sometimes treat God as our last resort because we feel we don’t deserve to ask Him for help. But no matter where your faith is at, it’s strong enough to let God in. The only way to outgrow unbelief is to use the faith you already have.

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Mark 2

ONLY BELIEVE

ONLY BELIEVE

In Genesis 45:25-26 (NIV), we read:  So they went up out of Egypt and came to their father Jacob in the land of Canaan. They told him, “Joseph is still alive! In fact, he is ruler of all Egypt.” Jacob was stunned; he did not believe them.

Jacob was feeling powerless. He was in Canaan, living in the middle of a famine. Everyone he was responsible for was either starving or dying. He had sent his sons to Egypt to buy food, so he was fending for himself – doing everything he could to hold things together until they got back. And when they did, he felt worse off than before.

His sons returned with good news. Joseph, the son he was told years earlier was dead, was alive! And not only was he alive, he was the ruler in Egypt! They would have all the food they needed. Even though there was a famine, there was enough provision to ensure all of them were cared for. Jacob’s sons brought back more than good news, they brought back hope. There was only one problem.

Jacob didn’t believe them. It was too good to be true. They were either misinformed or lying just to make him feel better. But it was true. Joseph was alive and he was ruler in Egypt. The only thing keeping Jacob from receiving the benefit of this news was unbelief. Jacob couldn’t move from famine to feasting…simply because he didn’t believe. His lack of faith would keep him on the outside looking in.

If you read the rest of the chapter, you’ll see that Jacob eventually came to his senses. His sons convinced him of the truth. But there’s a lesson to be learned. God has good news. He is the ruler of all and has made provision for His family. What keeps us from experiencing God’s best is the same thing that kept Jacob from it…sometimes, we just don’t believe. God only requires two things from us:  believe and obey. Don’t allow unbelief to keep you from God’s greater blessings.

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Mark 1

NO WEAPON

NO WEAPON

In Isaiah 54:17 (NKJV), we read: No weapon formed against you shall prosper…

As we continue in our walk of faith with Jesus, we can find ourselves on an uneasy path. This is why through Isaiah, God tells us that there are WEAPONS being formed against us. When a weapon is formed or designed against an enemy force, it is directed towards their weakness. Therefore, God is forewarning us, that there is an enemy who is against us and this enemy has forged or designed weapons against our weaknesses. But the Lord also wants us to know that these weapons SHALL NOT prosper in our lives. He is encouraging us that theses weapons will not defeat us!

If you are facing a hardship or a struggle today, we want to encourage you to stand your ground. God will not allow that struggle or hardship to remain in your life. This weapon that has been forged against you will not prosper; rather, it will make you stronger. What we overcome, eventually becomes a new strength in our lives.

[A new Bible Reading Plan will be released in our third 90-Day Challenge. In the meantime, the following Bible reading plan is from our first 90-Day Challenge. If you’ve completed this plan, we recommend that you read through portions again in a different version of the Bible. Use this time to catch up on any missed reading (Example: Instead of NKJV, try NLT).]

Daily Bible Reading:  Matthew 28