Category Archives for "Inspirational"
inspirational people and stories
inspirational people and stories
Making Time to Get to Know Jesus Better
I want you to think back to the day you took (and passed) your driver’s test. Oh, what a glorious day! What a milestone! What freedom!
It didn’t just happen, though, did it? You practiced driving. You drove (no pun intended) your parents nuts asking them to let you drive whenever the car left the garage. You learned to back out of parking places. You learned to yield, merge, wait your turn at 4-way stops, and all those other things that come naturally to you now. You practiced because more than anything else you wanted to hear the words, “You passed”.
Now I want you to think about what happened after you hear those two magic words and had license in hand (goofy picture and all). What did you do? Did you throw caution to the wind and start driving on your own terms instead of continuing to obey the rules of the road?
No! You don’t because you know it doesn’t work like that. In order to keep the privilege of having a driver’s license you have to know and follow the rules. Well guess what? Being a Christian is a lot like driving. Why? Because after you become a Christian you can’t just go your own way; living life on your terms. You have to live like Jesus. And the only way to live like Jesus is to make time to know Him up-close and personal-like.
• Read and study the Bible
• Listen to the Bible on CD or on your phone while driving, walking, or doing household chores
• Listen to Christian music in the car, on the treadmill, or while working around the house
• Memorize a few key and favorite verse– and yes, you can do it
• Join a Bible study. Everyone deserves a couple of hours a week getting away from work, the kids, and the other business we call life. And what better way to spend that couple of hours than getting to know Jesus and your brothers and sisters in Christ better?
Jesus tells us to come to Him in prayer and that He will speak, answer, console, and counsel– pray short, simple prayers throughout your day. Pray as if Jesus is by your side having a heart-to-heart, one-on-one conversation … because you are.
Serve- Use your talents to serve others in the name of Jesus. Be a part of your church, more than just a Sunday seat-warmer.
Making a commitment to Jesus requires you to follow the rules for Godly living. You can’t do that, though, unless you know what Jesus’ definition and expectations for Godly living are. And the only way you can know these things is to make your commitment to him a priority … your top priority. Is it?
As followers of Jesus we are to make time for Him not only in our personal life but in our work place as well. So how do we make time for Jesus? Simple, we do that by being by being like Jesus.
As a Christian you are a reflection of Jesus to the unbeliever and unsaved. Who you are is who they think Jesus is. And to your brothers and sisters in Christ and the church as a whole, you are to set an example of faithful obedience. In other words, making time for your commitment to Jesus is taking time to:
Your commitment to Jesus is real and effective at work when you:
Matthew 28:19-20 says: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Jesus spoke these words to His disciples just before He returned to heaven. His disciples…fishermen, a tax collector, an anti-government radical, and a man who was could have been from Missouri (he had to see it to believe it). Do you notice that none of these men were training to be in the ministry before Jesus called them? That didn’t matter, though. When Jesus called they answered. They were willing to make time for Jesus while they worked.
( Genesis 39-40).
The brothers of Joseph thought that they have once and for all stopped Joseph’s dream by eradicating his presence before their eyes and silencing his mouth about his ambitious dreams of glorious position and power over them. But little did they know that the very evil that they had done to Joseph was the means that God will use in order to bring about the dream that He had given to Joseph ever since his youth.
This is the very mystery of divine intervention. The Lord in His majestic and all-knowing wisdom has the ability to transform and work all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called by Him. Nonetheless, even if the Lord can immediately bring to pass what He desires for Joseph to be, but He used the “process” of time to step by step fulfill in the life of Joseph the dreams that He himself has given. This is teaching us then that even though the Lord is a powerful God by whom all things are possible, but still, He’s motivating us by the fact of who He is to do our part– our responsibility.
In the life of Joseph, we can learn three principles about how he responded to God’s sovereignty, doing all his best to live up according to the divine dream that the Lord has given him. By living accordingly to these 3 principles, he was able to master the divine truth in the dream, making himself as a worthy vessel for God’s blessing to His people.
1. THE PRESENCE OF GOD. The key to Joseph’s success in everything that he does is no other than the presence of God. The Bible says, “And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man …” In other words, it’s not because of Joseph’s talents and innate ability that he was able to master his dreams, bringing them into reality. Rather, it’s because of the faithful and powerful presence of the Lord which always imparts blessings to all his plans and endeavors. Therefore, the vital question that we should ponder is this: How can a man and a woman summon the presence of God to their lives? Since it is an obvious fact here that true prosperity or success is given by the presence of God, how then can we take God’s presence with us? The answer is simple: It is by faith. Hebrews 11:22 says, “By faith Joseph …” Meaning, the reason why God’s presence was with Joseph was because Joseph trusted in the Lord. Joseph had a genuine relationship with God by faith. And this relationship that he had with the Lord gave him access to God even to His favor that brings blessings (Hebrews 11:6).
2. MAN OF CHARACTER. The evidence that Joseph is endowed by God’s presence is that he is a man of godly character. In other words, he proves his relationship with God by living out according to the will of God. Joseph’s life is a very important lesson for our lives today. You and I know that we are living in an ungodly culture wherein the principles of success and prosperity in life are more on pursued through crooked means. Godly character is not popular today. It is seen as a disadvantage, a weakness, and a loser’s attitude. But Joseph’s life proves to us that godliness is not a disadvantage. True! In the world the people will not recognize and applause you for standing on godly principles. Like Joseph, they will tempt you, persecute you, accuse you, and do you harm. But be strong, the fulfillment of your dreams, divine calling, and God-given purpose is not dependent on their approval and acclamation. It depends upon the presence of God. Thus, your responsibility and battle to fight is to stand fast and strong on God’s will, living it out with all your best, knowing that you have a God who never sleeps nor slumbers but always ready to fight for your cause.
3. GOD’S TIMING. In order for you to master your dreams– your God-given dreams, you need to understand that its materialization is not arranged by your schedule but by God’s timing. Therefore, for you to successfully achieve your dream, you need to be patient, waiting upon the Lord’s right time for its fulfillment. Like Joseph, he waited for years. Actually, considering the difficulty of his situation, he would have thought that all hope of freedom from slavery was long gone already. But God is not bound by difficult situation. He is not hindered nor affected by our human impossibilities and desperation. On the contrary, He is the God who can orchestrate all things, good or bad, best and worst for the good of those who trust Him. If you’ll read Genesis 40, you’ll see how the Lord had easily freed Joseph out of the prison and brought him before the very presence of the king with a great privilege prepared for him by the God of his dreams. And it’s just a matter of time that this slave young man in Egypt will become the renowned Prime Minister of that land, the Savior and Hero of that nation and Provider for his own people– Israel.
The fact remains that Jesus is alive up till today, or how can we explain the fact that when we pray in His name the prayers are answered, it is only because He seats at the right hand of the throne of God, powers and principalities being subjected to Him.
God wants every individual to have a true relationship with Jesus if possible. This goes beyond just knowing Him, or just having a knowledge of Him, but living totally for Him, not because God wants to push us into a bondage, but because of who Jesus is, and the role He is ordained to play in the life of man.
Have you a relationship with Jesus or you are still questioning why you should even though you have heard that you need to? The following points are the reasons why you need to give your all to Him as a matter of urgency.
The name Jesus is a wonderful name that can bring to pass everything that God had ordained for an individual, nation, or the whole world. The name has brought lots of changes into the world since He came over two thousand years ago, and it is still working wonders today.
1. He created you: Jesus is your creator. The Bible says by Him all things were made, that includes you. He knows everything about your life; the past, present, and the future, as a matter of fact He chose what you have come to this world to do, He sent you here. If you actually want to make a success of your life, you have to have a good link with your source Jesus.
2. He loves you: Jesus loves you, such love that no man can give to you He gave unconditionally. It is this love that makes Him to leave His glory in heaven and come to earth to seek for sinners in order to save them, which includes you. The love made Him to subject himself to all kinds of suffering and humiliation, and even death in order to be a sacrifice for your sin. He did all of these before you were born so that when you eventually appear on earth, the way of escape out of sin and bondage would already be waiting for you.
3. He is the Savior: Jesus was ordained to save you from sin and eternal damnation in hell which you were heading for as a result of the fact that you have been born into sin, and you have been living a life of sin. The name Jesus is the only name God gave to man to bring salvation, you can not afford to separate yourself from that name.
4. He can not fail you: Jesus is a faithful friend if you make Him one. He is so faithful that even in death when others have left you to your fate He will still be with you to take you to Paradise. He told His disciples that He will prepare a place for them so that they can be with Him together forever, that is true for everyone who believes in Him.
5. He can help you: Whatever help you need in life, you can get it through Jesus. You must have realized by now that man is not reliable, and that no matter how much you try to get help form man you will always end in failure and disappointment at one point or the other. Jesus is the ultimate help, he can supply all your needs and give you anything that you want, read the Bible and you will see how He helped everyone that comes in contact with Him, He can do the same for you.
6. He is the final judge: Jesus will judge the whole world at the end because God had committed that to His hands, what do you think will happen to those who have rejected His offer of salvation, what will be the fate of those who despised the blood that was shed on Calvary? They will have their lot in the lake that burns with brimstone and fire.
Starting a relationship with Christ is simple; you confess your sin to Him, stop committing them, and put the whole of your trust in Him henceforth. He will send His Holy Spirit to live in you, and guide you so that you can start a new life altogether, remember that you can never be wiser than your God, neither can you fight against Him and win, when you ally with God, you will enjoy the best of His world.
Re-posted from: http://www.ligonier.org/learn/articles/no-shortcuts-growth
I’m still amazed whenever I see the bumper sticker that reads, “Visualize world peace.” The idea is that if I, and enough other people, create the right mental picture of peace, it will soon come to pass. It’s astounding that some people actually believe that silly technique will bring about such a desirable goal.
Then, there’s the popular “Coexist” bumper sticker. You may have seen it, the one spelled out with the symbols of different religions—the Islamic crescent forming the C, the Christian cross forming the T, and so on. The idea seems to be that if we religious people would just stop focusing on our differences, we could achieve world harmony. If we understood that our beliefs are all ultimately the same, all of the problems of war and strife would go away.
The funny thing is, we’ll reject such sentiments when they appear on a bumper sticker, but we’ll accept them elsewhere. How many business seminars promise increased profit if we only focus on the positive or visualize a goal? Eastern mysticism, where much of the bumper-sticker theology we’re talking about finds its ultimate origin, dresses it up with more acceptable religious practices. Meditate regularly, repeating a mantra as you visualize the oneness of all things, and the human race will move toward unity. But there’s also a version sold to us as the Christian key for victorious living. Speak your desire, claim it’s yours in Jesus’ name, visualize it will happen, and then it will be yours. Your healing, wealth, relationship success, happy family, improved marriage will come as soon as you name it and claim it or practice the power of positive thinking.
We’re looking for the right technique, the secret that will turn our wishes into reality. We laugh at the world’s spiritual magic, only to baptize it and practice it ourselves. We’ll read Scripture hoping to find the shortcut to spiritual growth while missing the true but non-shortcut answer—the key is not in the Bible; it is the Bible.
One reason we look for spiritual shortcuts is related to our modern age where shortcuts and rapid results abound. We can quickly relieve pain with medicine, find our way to restaurants with our smartphones, and get immediate answers to our questions online. These aren’t inherently bad things, but they tend to foster false expectations. If technology can relieve our illnesses and make our jobs easier, it surely can give rest to our souls, right?
We assume the answer is yes, and there are all too many “experts” out there who’ll encourage that assumption. Just look at the self-help section at your local bookstore, even at your local Christian bookstore. Book after book promises to hold the key to our happiness in twelve steps or less. The fact that none of the promises pan out doesn’t deter people from buying those books or new authors from repackaging old, ineffective answers in fancier dress.
But we can’t ultimately blame our search for shortcuts on modern technology. Our innate desire since the fall for autonomy, to be masters of our own fates, drives us to search out soul-building techniques that will improve us. We see our faith not as an end in itself but as a means to greater fulfillment. Evangelists routinely implore people to come to Christ, saying that He will make them happier, more confident in themselves, and more spiritual. Jesus becomes a means to improve our marriages and finances while releasing us from all manner of compulsions and negative character traits.
Can Christ do all those things? Of course He can. But Jesus is not a means to other ends—He is the end, the goal of our lives. He doesn’t come into our lives to give us special techniques to make our lives better; He works in and through us, changing us for the sake of His glory. He provides believers no mystic secrets to take them to a higher plane of spirituality. There’s no hidden truth available to only a few, no method that guarantees quick maturity in Him as long as we master it.
We’re saved by grace alone and justified by faith alone, but having been saved, we don’t just wait around to die. Christianity is about spiritual growth as well, and spiritual growth involves effort—the hard work of sanctification. We manifestly don’t work for our regeneration or our justification. Both acts are monergistic, accomplished by God alone. Only the Holy Spirit can change our hearts. Only the righteousness of Christ, the righteousness of the Son of God secured by His perfect obedience to the Father, can secure our right standing before God. Sanctification, however, includes our efforts. We say it is synergistic because both God and we are doing something. Yet, we aren’t equal partners. God wills and works in us according to His good pleasure so that we progress in holiness (Phil. 2:12–13). But as God works in us, we work as well, pursuing Him in prayer, relying on the means of grace—the preached Word and the sacraments—seeking to be reconciled to those we have offended. There’s no shortcut for sanctification. It’s a process, and one that all too often seems overly plodding, with progress taking years to discern.
God’s work is easy for Him. He doesn’t look for shortcuts because He never grows weary. We get tired and frustrated, however. We’re tempted to look for the simple path, the quick answer, the effortless way forward. But there is none. Sanctification requires diligently attending to the means God has given us. The growth may be slow, almost imperceptible at times, but it is sure.
No technique of the devil’s can stop the process of Christ making us into His image. Those whom He calls He sanctifies.
Casually attending to the things of the Lord will not result in our nurture. Visualizing or seeking a secret formula won’t help. We must work out our salvation with fear and trembling, knowing that Christ, by His Spirit, is working in us.
You always try to be the best parent you can be but sometimes still feel like you fall short! Do not despair, every parent feels this way at some point! Use the tips below to learn how to become a better parent and have a stronger sense of communication and effective, fair discipline.
Although it is a widely debated topic, it is highly recommended that your child get all necessary vaccinations. Some of the diseases that your child can get if they do not get vaccinated could make them sick or worse, even kill them. This holds especially true for children who go to school, where diseases are spread more rapidly.
The most important thing to remember while disciplining your children is consistency. Parenting during the terrible-two’s can be challenging, for both little one and adult. At this stage children like to push the limits of what is and is not allowed. Make sure that you set clear boundaries and are consistent with your time-outs so children know what is expected of them.
Being around your children a lot can be very stressful. Make sure you take time out for you. Plan a dinner date with a good friend, go for a long walk to go to the movies by yourself. That little time away will be enough for your to recharge and be the best parent you can be.
As unfortunate an event it may be, divorces happen all of the time. In order for you, a divorced parent, to hold a good relationship with your college aged and older children you must never get them in the middle of your divorce. This will push them away for you and your ex-spouse.
Your child probably is not meaning to frustrate or disobey you. In fact, he or she may be breaking rules in order to draw your attention to a bigger issue. Use the tips above to recognize how you and your child communicate so you can improve it for both of you!
Why you Need God’s Anointing
God desires us to stay in success as well as magnificent blessings at all times, and He is ready to have this done without considering what it will cost Him. This is one of the reasons why He made Adam and Eve to have dominion over all the creatures of his hands, He did this to make sure that nothing will be able to have power or control over them.
God’s purpose for our lives has not changed since He created us, even after Adam and also Eve sinned against Him and He drove them from the Garden of Eden. God still wants them to live as the controller of the earth.
One thing that God had done to ensure and maintain the superiority of man over all other creatures is to make His anointing available to him. The anointing of God is the power of God in man, such power is given to enable him to do extraordinary things in order to fulfill some some of the tasks that God will often use man to fulfill.
Take Samson for example, he was among the Judges in the Old Testimony. He was quite a different individual when compared with all other judges that ruled in the land. He was kind of an one-man army that could defy and destroy the whole army of another nation. He was so powerful that He could killed a full grown lion with his bare hands, he could uproot the gate of a whole city and take it up a hill where they will not find it easy to bring it down.
He was able to do these great things because the anointing of God was upon Samson. For the whole Twenty Years that he reigned as Judge, no adversary nation of Israel dared to wage war against them simply because, they would have Samson to contend with.
Another great example from the bible is King David. He was only a boy when God put him under the spotlight and decided to bless him as King over Israel. He was not very different from any other boy of his age until he was anointed by the Prophet Samuel. After the anointing he was an entirely different person. Under the power of God’s anointing he was able to kill a lion and and a bear to protect the flock which he was looking after.
Remember the story of David and Goliath? The Philistines were taunting the Israelites day after day with Goliath (the giant) and nobody had the courage to challenge him. All the warriors of Israel, including King Saul were afraid of Goliath’s stature.
When David reached the battle and saw what was going on, he rose to the challenge. He was so brave through God’s anointing that he refused the safety armor that was offered to him when he went into battle with Goliath. Armed with only his sling and a few smooth stones which normally could not kill a normal person let alone a giant, he met Goliath head on and was victorious.
God’s anointing allowed both Samson and David to do the seemingly impossible as a way to show us what’s possible when we allow God to work through us. God did the same in the life of His Prophets, Judges, and Kings to make them perform the functions He assigned to them.
In the Old Testimony God only permitted the Holy Ghost to come upon individuals when He them them to perform a certain job. His anointing would come upon them, empower them for the task, and then leave after the job is done. However, in the New Testament things were a little different. By God’s design, the Holy Spirit will not only come upon people, but He will dwell in them and live with them too. Christians these days are to be carriers of the Holy Spirit as well as the anointing of God anywhere they go.
Jesus promised His disciples when He was going that they will receive power after the Holy Ghost might have come upon them, and with that they will be able to witness for Him. That power Jesus was talking about is the anointing.
Going further we see that the Holy Ghost actually came down on the day of Pentecost, and all the disciples present got baptized by fire, fully charged to carry out the tasks God gave them. They performed various miracles, signs, and wonders, in a record that we know as the Acts of the Apostles today.
There are many in the Christendom who believes that what the Apostles experienced in the bible ended with them, and that such are not possible in our time, how wrong can they be? God will give the gift of the Holy Spirit to anyone who asks, and just as Jesus sent them to go into the world and make disciples of all nations, the same way He had sent us forth, why should He give us lesser power to operate with?
Today’s post is brought to us by Ian Coates of Christian Illustrations
The choices we make today are all leading us to someplace. We have to ask ourselves is that ‘someplace’ somewhere we want to go? We must know the road we travel!
Life is a journey. In regard to our physical, mental and financial wellbeing – where we find ourselves today generally depends on roads traveled yesterday. And where we find ourselves tomorrow depends on roads taken today.
Common sense dictates, if we wish to reach certain destinations we must find the roads that lead there. If we travel on paths going in the opposite direction to our destination it should be obvious we will never reach our desired goal.
Every day we make choices: some large – most small. Those choices are steps heading in one direction or another. If we choose to be lazy, self-absorbed, angry or bitter, we shouldn’t be surprised when we reach those miserable towns called: Failure, Loneliness and Depression. No one plans to go to a wretched dead end, but if we are heading in that direction (by bad daily decisions) we shouldn’t be shocked when we end up there.
As Christians, we should desire to become a person of integrity, poise and inner-happiness – a strong, inspirational Christian who leads many people to the Lord. To do this, we must travel on roads directed in God’s Word. We must follow our Lord Jesus Christ. His way leads us to Salvation and the eventual arrival at Spiritual Maturity. His ways lead to a relaxed attitude where we are content in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. His ways lead to fulfilling a tailor-made plan that has eternal and glorious repercussions.
Every day we have the option of taking ‘our way’ or ‘God’s way’. Of course we immediately think, ‘I want to head in God’s way’, but we must question if our daily decisions are taking us in the opposite direction. If we realize we are heading the wrong way, it’s time to turn around.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
The road we travel today will lead us to where we go tomorrow.
Making Our Mark – Courtesy of ChristianIllustration.com
It’s natural to want to leave our mark in life, but very few people are remembered past their own lifetime.
When we make a mark in sand, it will last only a few days before being blown or washed away. Carve a mark on a tree and it may last decades, and if we chisel a mark on a rock it could last centuries. In time, however, when the marked object is defaced or destroyed, so too is any evidence of what we did.
Many of us want to leave our mark on the world, be it in business, arts, sports or the military. Even though some are extremely successful and leave behind a giant mark, when the world eventually ends so will all evidence of the things done upon it. (1 John 2:17) If we invest time and effort marking temporal things, when they are destroyed, so too is that investment.
If we really want to leave a lasting impression, we should leave our mark on something permanent – GOD’S ETERNAL PLAN. God has given us all the tools to do this, plus He has given us a role model (Jesus Christ) to show us how. Things our Lord did in His life were in accordance to God’s plan and will be talked about and glorified forever. If we follow Christ’s example and use the resources God provides, it is guaranteed our mark will never be erased, destroyed or fade.
We should always keep in mind: Life is but a drop in the ocean compared to eternity. Personal glory in life is fleeting; however, the glory of God’s plan lasts forever. Making our mark on GOD’S ETERNAL PLAN is something we will always be proud of.
“His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’” (Matthew 25:21)
A Helen Keller quote – “The best and the most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart.”
From time to time, there come some people in the world who ignore even the most impossible barriers life places in front of them. Helen Keller was one of these persons. Deaf and blind since when she was only 19 months old, she was the author of several published books.