May 23, 2016

Think Spot 23 May 2016

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Think Spot - 23rd May 2016

One of the key verses in the Apostle Paul's letter to the Philippian church is
 "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain." (Philippians 1:21)

Indeed, as we read the life of Paul and his ministry and witness for Jesus Christ, those words could be said to be Paul's motto or maxim for his life of service to God. The Apostle Paul's view of God and of Jesus Christ was not too small. Over 50 times in this letter to the Philippians, Paul states the name of Jesus or of Christ and that doesn't include the pronouns such as he, his and him. Paul was besotted with God. Paul was besotted with Jesus Christ.

Are you, if you are a Christian, besotted with Jesus - the God you claim to follow? Go into this week, knowing that God loves you and safely knowing that He cares deeply for you. Put your cares and concerns in His hands and let Him lavish his care upon you.

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May 16, 2016

Think Spot 16 May 2016

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Think Spot - 16th May 2016


Charlotte Bronte once said “Life appears to me to be too short to be spent in nursing animosity, or registering wrong.

Many people nurse a guilty conscience owing to holding onto animosity or wrongs done to them or having done wrong things to others. As a consequence, their life is filled with turmoil and bitterness. You may well be like that – I don’t know!

What I do know is that your conscience is the faculty which is sensitive to right and wrong, and judges your actions and attitudes. Everybody has a conscience and all are sensitive to spiritual truths, whether they are immediately aware of it or not.

According to the Bible, a clear conscience is essential for inner peace and joy, confidence in prayer, good health, effective service, .right relation-ships, effective witnessing, making right decisions, and victory in spiritual battle. A clear conscience is the inner joy and peace of spirit which results from having all personal wrongs made right with those whom a person had offended - either God or someone else.

However- many Christians carry around guilty consciences due mainly to unconfessed sins, affecting relationships with God, other people and themselves. If left unchecked, a conscience which is guilty, slowly grows 'dead', cold and silent. That is until such time that the guilt has been assuaged and put right.If at the moment you are burdened by a guilty conscience, ask the Holy Spirit to show you clearly what is affecting your conscience.

Then decide, at any cost, to clear it up in the power of the same Spirit. He will help you! Pray to the Father and ask forgiveness, (1 John 1:9), and fully accept His love and forgiveness. If there is anyone else involved, then you will also need to ask for their forgiveness (Matthew 5:23-24). Ask the Father to help you go, and the Spirit will help you, because one of the hardest things in the world to say is: “I was wrong! Please forgive me."

Your conscience can be cleansed because of what Jesus did on the cross! Hebrews 9:14 says “How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!

Go into this week, ready to serve the living God, being confident that the Holy Spirit living within you, empowers you, is transforming you and desires that your conscience be clear. He will help you overcome if you ask!

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May 9, 2016

Think Spot 9 May 2016

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Think Spot 9 May 2016

For those of us who would call ourselves Christians, the Bible is very clear – you are called to lovingly and obediently serve in some capacity. A life of true Joy is seen in obedient service to the glory of God the Father, through God the Son Jesus Christ, in the power of God the Holy Spirit who lives in you. If you are engaging in either intentional or unintentional acts of disobedience, then you need to turn your life around to one of utter obedience to the God you profess to follow.

As a Christian, you have the Holy Spirit within you, as a seal of your salvation. Your body is the temple where God now resides. You can’t hide from Him, so you may as well choose to be obedient to Him in a life of joyful service, exhibiting that true Joy and the hope you have in Him. Just as joy followed Moses and Aaron’s obedience in Leviticus 9, so too can it be for those of us willing to lovingly serve obediently.


This is an extract from Glimpses into Leviticus available at Amazon

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May 2, 2016

Think Spot 2 May 2016

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Think Spot 2 May 2016

"God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God." Matthew 5:9


All over the world, people share a common desire for peace! But what is peace? The peace the world wants varies from the peace the Christian knows. The world sees peace as the absence of conflict and people being generally ‘nice' to one another. Peace in the Christian context goes further, saying peace is perfect harmony with God, other people, circumstances and self. Therefore perfect peace will not come until Jesus Christ comes again, and takes Christians to be with Him.

That doesn't give us as Christians a mandate to sit around not doing what we can for peace, because we are commanded to be peacemakers (Matthew 5:9), our God is a God of peace (1 Thessalonians 5:23), and the Kingdom of God is about peace in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17). Peace is to be our business!

In a world full of conflicts, such as conflicts between nations, conflicts between neighbours, conflicts even within families and conflicts within and between churches, Christians are to be peacemakers!With that in mind, here are some thoughts on what the Bible has to say on peace, to help you this week be a peacemaker:

1. Peace with God

  • Justified by faith (Romans 5:1-2)
  • Christ is our peace between God and man and between men (Ephesians 2:13-18)

2. Peace with others

  • Live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:17-20)
  • Do everything possible which leads to peace and mutual encouragement (Romans 14:13-19)
  • Be a peacemaker - a sign of real wisdom producing a harvest of righteousness (Matthew 5:9, James 3:17-18)

3. Peace within/circumstances

  • Peace is a gift of God (John 14:27, 2 Thessalonians3:16)
  • Worldly peace requires manipulation of circumstances, God's peace comes regardless of circumstances
  • We have peace in troubled times - an untroubled, unfearful heart and mind (John 16:33)

Go in peace this Monday, into this week, knowing that the God of peace lives inside you if you are one of His children! Yesterday churches around the world celebrated the feast of Pentecost - the coming of the Holy Spirit as promised by Jesus. If you desire peace with God, with others and in all circumstances, ask this Holy Spirit who lives inside you to help you! If you would not consider yourself as one of His children, ask Him to help you become one!

Father, I pray that this week we will do all we can to be peacemakers and make a difference in world in conflict. I ask this through the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ and in the power of the Holy Spirit who lives inside all those who have peace with you. Amen

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Apr 25, 2016

Think Spot 25 April 2016

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Think Spot - 25 April 2016

As Christians we are commanded to love God and to show that by loving other people - all other people including those who are our enemies. I am sure that you have people that you love, and to whom you say that you love and care for. Good!

But please don't assume you know how to show your love and care for them. Ask them how you can show your love and care for them in practise... We are also to love the whole person and to take care of the whole person. We are to care for their whole well-being: their spiritual, physical, emotional, social and mental well-being.

Quite often, we neglect one of those areas. The whole person matters to God. He cares for the whole person. Therefore so must we. How will you refine your love of other people now that you are aware?

Go and love. Love others - all others - an every facet of the other person - spiritual, physical, emotional, social and mental well-being...


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Apr 18, 2016

Think Spot 18 April 2016

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Think Spot

18th April 2016

Welcome to Partakers Think Spot!

Tucked away in the ancient book of Leviticus is this command: Leviticus 19:18 ‘“Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbour as yourself. I am the LORD.


Further on in the same chapter is:Leviticus 19:33-34 ‘“When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not ill-treat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God.


In fact the whole chapter is about loving others as you would want to be loved by others if you were in those situations. The whole law itself is about loving God and loving others.


Jesus exemplified this of course.Speaking in Matthew 5:43-45 ‘You have heard that it was said, “Love your neighbour and hate your enemy.” But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous."


Then later on his ministry, Jesus and taught the Jewish teachers of the law about it. We read in Matthew 22:34-40 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ Jesus replied: ‘“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.’


As Christians in the 21st century we are commanded to love. To love God and to show we love God by loving all others – yes including those who hate us and those who mock, vilify and persecute us. Yet every day I see examples in the media, including the Christian media, of just the opposite. Christians hating on others, including other Christians. That doesn’t meant we are to condone the sinning of other Christians, but we can help lovingly restore them.


Jesus loved others and yet gently restored and guided people to go sin no more. Such as the woman caught in adultery and bought before Him in John 8.


Is it easy to love our enemies and our persecutors? No. It can be difficult. Difficult if we try to do it in our own strength. But… But if we ask the Holy Spirit who lives within us to help us love all others as we would want to be loved, then it is possible. We ask Him for help and listen to His guidance. We are to either do as He says to do or we are to not do as He says not to do.


As the church, and as individual parts of the church, we are to mirror and reflect the God we proclaim to serve and worship. God is love. God is trinity. The Father loves the Son and the Spirit. The Son loves the Father and the Spirit. The Spirit loves the Father and the Son. Perfect and matchless love for eternity. God loves humanity, hence the Son entering into the time and space of humanity and loved sacrificially.


Let’s go into this week determined to be obedient to the Holy Spirit in loving all others we meet – in our words, thoughts and actions. If those outside the Kingdom see you loving others, they will see that you love your God! How amazing is that! Ask the Holy Spirit to show you each morning, how you can love others every day. When you feel like you are going seek revenge or bear a grudge, or you are going to ill treat anybody in anyway, ask the Holy Spirit to help you not to do those things and for a way in which you can show love to that person! That’s all for today!


Here is a brief prayer to help us to start using our words and thoughts wisely starting today.


Father, help us this week to love others as we would like to be loved. May we as your church reflect you and show our of you by loving all others... Help me Holy Spirit to show love to all others, including those who mock and scorn me. We ask this, through the mighty name of your Son, Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

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