WHEN YOU EMBRACE GOD’S MISSION: 9/8/2020


Jonah 1:6 – The sailors were awestruck by the LORD’s great power, and they offered Him a sacrifice and vowed to serve Him.

When you embrace God’s mission for your life, miracles happen. You can see this in the life of Jonah. God told him to warn the people of Nineveh that judgment was near, but he tried to run in the opposite direction, far away from where God wanted him to be.

In order to get Jonah back on mission, God sent a violent storm to stop the ship. “‘Throw me into the sea,’ Jonah said, ‘and it will become calm again. I know that this terrible storm is all my fault’” (Jonah 1:12).

When Jonah finally obeyed God, three miracles happened. These same miracles will happen as you embrace God’s mission for your life.

1- Life calms down: Suddenly there will be peace where there was previously a storm. God ended the storm the moment Jonah was tossed into the sea. God has a purpose for the storms you face in life. He may be trying to get your attention. His purpose is always greater than your problem. When you accept God’s mission, He’ll calm the storm sent to get your attention.

2- Unbelievers will believe: Jonah was on a ship full of people who didn’t believe in God. They were astounded that God stopped the storm when they threw Jonah overboard. And so, “The men were terrified of the Lord. They offered sacrifices and made vows to the Lord” (Jonah 1:16). Because a person who believed in God suddenly went the right way instead of the wrong way, unbelievers believed.

You probably have a friend or relative who isn’t a follower of Jesus. Have you ever thought you might be affecting their willingness to put their trust in Jesus? Maybe your life and your choices are keeping them from coming to Christ. When you finally give 100 percent to God, your loved one will want what you have.

3- God shows you mercy: The Bible says in Jonah 1:17, “The Lord sent a big fish to swallow Jonah”. That doesn’t sound like mercy, but it was. Some people think that if they come back and embrace God’s mission, He’ll punish them for all the time they wasted. That’s just not true.

Embracing God’s unique mission for your life is the best decision you can ever make. He wants you to fulfill your mission, so He will welcome you back with open arms.

Miracles will follow.

REFLECTION
– When have you seen God calm a storm once you obeyed what he had told you to do?
– When Jonah was swallowed by a big fish, it turned out to be an act of God’s mercy. Have you seen examples in your life of events you thought were negative, but God was really saving you from something else?

WHY RUN AWAY FROM GOD?8/8/2020


Jonah 1:3 – Jonah immediately tried to run away from the LORD by going to Tarshish.

God gives every one of us a unique mission—and He gives us a choice as to whether or not we fulfill that mission.

God gave Jonah a mission: to warn the people of Nineveh that judgment was coming. But “Jonah immediately tried to run away from the Lord by going to Tarshish” (Jonah 1:3).

Jonah faced consequences for his decision, the same kind of consequences you may encounter if you run away from God’s mission for your life. The Bible says that when Jonah boarded a ship to get away from his mission, God sent a powerful wind to push the boat back (Jonah 1:4).

Why did God do that? Because He loved Jonah and wanted him to make a good decision that would give him a life of purpose and fulfillment. God sends opposition our way to encourage us to make better decisions.

Jonah’s disobedience also threatened the lives of everyone on the boat to Tarshish. When you run away from God, innocent people, including those you care about, can get hurt. Maybe it’s your spouse, your kids, your siblings, or your friends, etc. Sometimes it’s people you don’t even know. People can get hurt because of your disobedience.

Jonah shows that when you run from God, your life starts a downward trajectory. Your disobedience will cost you financially, physically, and relationally.

Nineveh was more than 550 miles away, but Jonah tried running to Tarshish, which was 2,500 miles away in the opposite direction. The truth is, you can’t run from God for the rest of your life. He’s everywhere and He knows everything. But He gives you choices because He wants you to love Him and follow Him voluntarily.

Since God has your best interest at heart, why run from Him?

REFLECTION
– Are you running away from something God has told you to do? Why do you think you’re resisting?
– What kind of consequences have you experienced when you’ve put yourself in opposition to God?

RESPOND IN LOVE: 6/8/2020


Mathew 5:43-44 – You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.

You can’t live on this earth for long without feeling hurt by someone. You can choose to respond to those who hurt you by hurting them. That’s the easiest choice to make, no doubt about it.

But God gives us another option. When people hurt you, they expect you to retaliate. They expect you to seek revenge. But God wants you to do the exact opposite. He wants you to respond in love.

Respond to mistreatment with love, and you keep the other person from controlling you. You can’t control when another person treats you unfairly. You can control whether you get bitter in the process. You can control your response to injustice.

Just because you respond to an offender lovingly doesn’t mean you continue to allow injustice. On the contrary, we must lovingly seek justice. We must work for justice in the world without retaliating. The Bible commands us to “be fair-minded and just. Do what is right!” (Jeremiah 22:3)

Martin Luther King Jr. was a great example of this. He fought against injustice. He overcame evil through the power of love. He followed the example of Jesus, who chose to forgive His persecutors even as they were killing Him.

That’s our calling as followers of Jesus. Unfairness and injustice may be part of the world today, but we must not feed into it. Instead, God calls us to respond in love. That’s what makes us different from the world.

REFLECTION
– What personal injustice, unfairness, or hurt in your life are you struggling to respond to in love? Why?

GOD’S PLAN FOR YOUR PAIN: 5/8/2020


1 Peter 4:19 – If you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to the God who created you, for He will never fail you.

Remember what photography was like before everything went digital? When you took a picture, the first thing you’d get was a negative. Then you had to develop the negative into a positive by going into a darkroom and shining a light through it onto photographic paper. This turned the negative into a positive full-color beautiful picture.

That’s what God wants to do with the injustices in our lives. We all have them. People have mistreated us. They’ve passed over us. They’ve taken advantage of us. God wants to take all the negatives, shine the light of Jesus through them, and turn them into positives — a full-color picture of the life we were made to live.

The most important thing you can remember when you’ve been treated unfairly is that Jesus is on your side. God is a God of justice. He hears your cry, sees your pain, and knows you were hurt. You didn’t get what you thought you deserved. But God has a plan for your pain.

When you shine the light of God’s love through your circumstances, He can turn your pain into a beautiful picture. He develops your character through it. He makes you stronger.

You’ll never get an explanation for much of the pain you endure in this life. But here’s the good news: You don’t need an explanation. You just need to know that God loves you. He has a plan for you.

God never wastes a hurt. Welcome the light of the Gospel into it and God will use your hurt — the very real injustice that has happened to you — to create a beautiful picture through your life.

REFLECTION
– How can you use the pain from your past to help other people?
– In what ways have you seen God grow your character through an injustice you experienced?

YOU NEED A SAVIOUR: 4/8/2020


Psalm 62:1 – I stand silently before the Lord, waiting for you to rescue me. For salvation comes from Him alone.

David was one of Israel’s greatest kings – powerful, smart, wealthy. He could have anything he wanted, but he knew he was unable to truly save himself. Only one person could save him: “I stand silently before the Lord, waiting for you to rescue me. For salvation comes from him alone” (Psalm 62:1).

It is impossible to work our way, buy our way, or earn our way into heaven. When it comes to salvation, we are unable to save ourselves. The government can’t save us. Our popularity can’t save us. Our level of success can’t save us. There’s no such thing as self-rescue, pulling yourself up by your bootstraps. The cost of salvation is beyond our means.

If you didn’t need a savior, God wouldn’t have sent one. But He knew that your spiritual condition was much worse than your physical condition could ever be. That’s why He sent Jesus to rescue and save you from the snares of sin and captivity of darkness.

There is no way you can get into Heaven on your own. There is no way you can pay for your salvation. The cost is beyond your means. So Jesus paid for it by coming and dying for you on the cross. He made that ultimate payment with His life. God simply invites you to accept the free gift of salvation that Jesus makes available.

Jesus answered and said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

REFLECTION
– How will you describe God’s work of salvation in your life?

Intentional Living 3: Mind-full


What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? Ps 8:4

God’s mind is full of thoughts of you. What you will become. What you will eat and wear. How He will use you to shine the Light on many. How He will guide you to fulfill His purpose for your life. His thoughts are all about you and that’s why He take His valuable time admist caring for everyone else; billions of people on the earth to know the hairs on your head, every tear you cry and much more.

How can you make the most of such love? Let your mind be full of Him. Let your mind be filled with His Word. Oh He desires us to be mind-full of Him. Let Him surround and consume all we do and say. Be mind-full of God by constant study of His Word and meditation

What is filling your mind?

Be intentional about how you live today

THE ULTIMATE RESCUER: 3/8/2020


Psalm 70:5 – I’m in deep trouble. Rush to my aid, for only You [God] can help and save me.

Have you ever gotten yourself into such a mess that you knew there was no way you could get out of it on your own? Whether it was getting your car stuck or getting so lost you didn’t know where you were, you needed a rescuer.

But how easy was it for you to ask for help?

The Bible is full of situations where people needed to be rescued — Adam and Eve, Joseph, Moses, Jonah, the people of Israel. They all needed a rescuer, a savior. But not all of them found it so easy to ask for help. Why? Pride.

It’s hard to admit we need someone else’s help. People might think we’re weak or foolish or somehow less perfect than the image we like to project. But the Bible says God is ready to “rescue those who are humble” (Psalm 18:27).

Jesus is the ultimate rescuer. He came to Earth to save all humanity through His death and Resurrection. “Jesus . . . gave Himself to rescue all of us” (1 Timothy 2:5).

But that means you have to admit that you need rescuing. It takes honesty and humility to admit our need and say like David, “I am in deep trouble. Rush to my aid, for only You [God] can help and save me” (Psalm 70:5).

That’s all you have to do. Just accept His grace, His mercy, and His love. But make sure you swallow your pride first.

REFLECTION
– How easily do you ask others for help?
– When has God “rushed to your aid” during a crisis in life?

GOD FINDS JOY IN YOU; 2/8/2020


Psalm 40:17 – I am weak and poor, O Lord, but You have not forgotten me. You are my saviour and my God — hurry to my aid!

A lot of people are afraid to trust Jesus with their lives because they think that means He will narrow it. He’ll cramp their style and make their life smaller with a lot of rules and restrictions.

When Christ comes into your life, the exact opposite happens. Instead of making your life more religious, He makes it more alive. He makes you more fully human and able to experience the life you were meant to live. He expands your horizons and gives you the ability to see things you’ve never seen before. You may be living a good life now, but God wants to offer you a better life.

The Bible says, “He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because he delighted in me” (Psalm 18:19). God expands the possibilities for your life because He delights in you. He doesn’t just love you; He finds joy in you!

The best way I can describe it is thinking back to when I was still very young. I didn’t have to do anything special for my parents to love me. They loved me and found joy in seeing me grow because they were my parents and I was their little boy.

God is your Heavenly Father; He made you, He loves you, and He finds joy in you. He wants to rescue you and give you the better, fuller life that you were destined to have.

REFLECTION
– What fears did you have to confront before choosing to follow Jesus?
– How has your life become “more alive” as you’ve drawn closer to Jesus?
– How is God making something of your life right now?