Tag Archive | church

Gathering

How lovely are Your dwelling places, O Lord of hosts! My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of the Lord; My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. How blessed are those who dwell in Your house! They are ever praising You. Selah. For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand outside. I would rather stand at the threshold of the house of my God Than dwell in the tents of wickedness.       Psalms 84:1‭-‬2‭, ‬4‭, ‬10 NASB

For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.” Matthew 18:20 NASB

not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.   Hebrews 10:25 NASB

My husband and I did some deliveries to homebound brothers and sisters yesterday and spent some time visiting. Our intention was to make the delivery and hopefully encourage those who we saw BUT I do believe that I was more encouraged and spirit lifted than they were.

What a blessing it is to spend time with the people of God. To speak of Jesus, His work in our lives, the lives of our love ones, to praise His mighty works, to encourage and be encouraged.

This morning my heart is joyful, content, at peace and believe it is because I dwelt in the courts of the Lord. Dwelt with God’s people where God is in the midst of our conversation, our small gathering. To God be the glory for His church.

As we celebrate around the world the birth of Jesus on December 25th, let us praise and thank Him for His church, the people of God, to whom He came to establish for His glory and purpose.

For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.    Isaiah 9:6 NASB

🌹 Have a very Merry Christmas!

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

The Church – Keeping the Unity

but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.     Ephesians 4:15‭-‬16 NASB

Jesus must be made the head of the body, the Church, for unity to be accomplished. He places each part (person) of the body in the church and He “causes the growth for the building up of itself in love”. We individually must surrender to the Lordship of Christ and be obedient to His commands (the Word of God, Bible).

Therefore, laying aside falsehood, speak truth each one of you with his neighbor, for we are members of one another. Ephesians 4:25 NASB

Neighbor: members of the church and accountable for and to one another.

be angry, and yet do not sin ; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not give the devil an opportunity. Ephesians 4:26‭-‬27 NASB

Remember that the devil is seeking whom he may devour and if he can destroy a church he will. Let us not give him the opportunity.

Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. Ephesians 4:29‭ NASB

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Ephesians 4:31 NASB

Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.  Ephesians 4:32 NASB

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Ephesians 4:30 NASB

from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.    Ephesians 3:15‭-‬19 NASB

🌹O the blessings, the “riches of His glory”, “strengthened with power through His Holy Spirit”, the dwelling of Christ in the heart! By this and our obedience we comprehend with all the saints the abounding, overflowing, tremendous love of God and are filled to the fullness of God.

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

The Church – Body of Christ

In yesterday’s devotion we read how a Christian is a new creation. We have put on the new self, the image of Jesus.

What does that look like in relation to the Church, the body of Christ?

Well, we, a part of the body should. . .

with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:2‭-‬3 NASB

Be diligent (earnest, persistent, painstaking) to preserve the unity of the Spirit. How? In the bond of peace which means every part of the body (each person) must be humble, gentle, patient, tolerant in love.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.      Galatians 5:22‭-‬23 NASB

As a Christian we have the Spirit abiding in us so we have the capability to display the fruit of His Spirit particularly to the body of Christ.

There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.      Ephesians 4:4‭-‬6 NASB

God is the church. Jesus is Lord of His church. The Spirit unites us into one body under the Lordship of Christ and we are one with God who is over all, through all and in all.

🌹Are you united in faith with a body of believers? The body of Christ?!

God, I pray for your church. Unite your church into one body under the Lordship of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Pour out Your Spirit on Your body of true believers to be diligent in preserving unity in Your church by the fruit of Your Spirit being displayed toward one another. In godly love may Your church be known by their love for You displayed in loving one another.

In Jesus name, amen.

By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35 NASB

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

Effectual Prayer

And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak the word of God with boldness.And the congregation of those who believed were of one heart and soul;            Acts 4:31-32a NASB

Through prayer we are given the power of boldness to speak truth amongst our brothers and sisters to encourage them in the faith.

Through prayer we are given boldness to share the gospel outside the walls of the church.

Through prayer the church is unified as one heart and soul as the body of Christ.

The power of prayer. The Holy Spirit of God desires to work in us to point others to Christ and His saving grace.

🌹Do you speak with boldness the word of God to others for the glory of God and the eternal well being of others?

🌹Are you participating in corporate prayer so God can build the body for His glory and purpose?

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

Disciple

And they spent a long time with the disciples. Acts 14:28 NASB

From the moment we are born we begin to learn. Learn to eat, walk, talk, etc.

Disciple: A student, learner.

Within 2 years of a child’s life, he learns all the basics that over time are fine tuned. Christians are the same way. For years we have prayed, hoped, and got excited about people coming to know the Lord Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. Many have come to that decision and yet our churches are dwindling in numbers. Why?

Could it be that we have left these Christian babies to fend for themselves? We introduce them to the Savior and then expect them to survive in a hostile world with satan who seeks to devour them. They need instruction. They need to be mentored by a mature Christian who can show them the ropes.

Discipling someone is taking the time (long time) to mentor them in how to seek the Lord, teaching them the spiritual disciplines, encouraging them in their walk, listening, answering their questions, being their friend. It costs to disciple. It cost Jesus His life so that we may be discipled by the Holy Spirit. He discipled 12 who could carry on.

🌹Can we disciple one? Is there someone in your life you could disciple? Would you pray for someone that you could disciple? The answer may not come right away, but God has someone for you to disciple or He would not have commanded us to, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations”.

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

Obedience Required

Then they will know that I am the Lord, when I make the land a desolation and a waste because of all their abominations which they have committed.
Ezekiel 33:29 NASB

Ezekiel, under the direction of God, spoke to the Israel nation warning them to obey God’s command and turn back to Him.

What is a Pastor? A man called of God to speak His word. Both Prophet and Pastor are called to speak God’s word.

Our responsibility is to listen and obey. We are blessed at this period of time to have God’s written word and the Holy Spirit to be able to discern the truth coming from the mouth of a Pastor. Is it truth? If you are reading your Bible and have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, you will be able to accurately discern the truth.

What is your habit of church attendance? Is your Bible open? Are you relying upon the Holy Spirit to discern the words? Are you listening and ready to obey?

Or are you just attending for the sake of attending?

“But as for you, son of man, your fellow citizens who talk about you by the walls and in the doorways of the houses, speak to one another, each to his brother, saying, ‘Come now and hear what the message is which comes forth from the Lord.’ They come to you as people come, and sit before you as My people and hear your words, but they do not do them, for they do the lustful desires expressed by their mouth, and their heart goes after their gain.
Ezekiel 33:30‭-‬31 NASB

🌹”They come to you as people come, and sit before you as My people and hear your words, but they do not do them”
Obedience requires action.

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

Sabbath

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “But as for you, speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘You shall surely observe My sabbaths; for this is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the Lord who sanctifies you. Therefore you are to observe the sabbath, for it is holy to you. — Exodus 31:12-14a

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon

My Father’s House

And He said to them, “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s  house?” — Luke 2:49

Here is your reason to be in church. Are you a Christian (follower of Jesus Christ)? Jesus “had to be in” His “Father’s house”. Follow Him to His (and your) Father’s house.

Praise and worship Him today!!!

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon

The Park

What a beautiful, out of the ordinary, winter day in the Midwest. Opportunity afforded me the blessing to take my grandson to the park for some exercise, fresh springtime air, and to be truthful keep him occupied and wear him out for the rest of the day. (It’s rough on this old body caring and especially playing with these youngins). And to let you know, he wore grandma out. He won.

But the real reason for this post is to tell you that God gives us opportunities to serve Him and tell the world about Him. As I was watching my grandson play, a nice young gentleman, there with his 2 year-old son, started up a conversation. I found out he was new in the area and he was wearing a big ole cross on his chest.

Going to pause here for a moment to rewind to Sunday at church. We, as a church, have been challenged to ask someone to church. Statistics show that a large percentage of people would attend church if they were asked to come. I also have been inspired by a fellow sister in the Lord to witness more. I have been praying asking the Lord to open my eyes, teach me, show me how to witness. He has also placed a very heavy, I mean very heavy, burden on my heart for those who are traveling the wide road to destruction. But back to my story. . .

New in the area, big cross on his chest. . . I say, “I see you are wearing a cross. Does it have any special significance to you?” He told me that when he died he would be with the One who died on the cross. Hallelujah!!! And since he was new in town I asked if he had found a church. He had. That’s great.

As I was driving home and thinking over what had happened and thanking God for opening my eyes to the opportunity I was reminded that I had also directed, invited, a woman and her family to my church when she was asking me if I knew of a church in the area. This was while I was at work. God makes opportunities for us. Those opportunities are there everyday, we just don’t see them because our focus is not on Christ.

Ask God to open your eyes to and heart for the lost of this world. Billions are headed to Hell. God has called us to share the Good News.

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon

 

Edified And Multiplied

Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied. — Acts 9:31 (KJV)

This verse so intrigued me that I kept reading it over and over again. Looked it up in other versions and here it is in the KJV. A time of peace for the churches had come. Saul was no longer pursuing Christians. They were being built up, encouraged, moving forward in the work of the Lord. 

In that edification they were walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit. In this the church was multiplied. Makes me wonder if the church is walking in encouragement today — seeking the Lord in reverent fear and in the comfort and trust of the Holy Spirit. Is it possible to see the church multiply today?

How is your walk?

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon