google-site-verification: google3e8cc4742c5fd8a2.html Think Spot 2011 06 27
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Think Spot - 27th June 2011

G'day and welcome to Partakers! Welcome also to Monday and our Think Spot together!

I wonder what your last week was like! I know for me it was full of trial and yet with a deep-seated trust that God was in control, despite the events and discouragements I was undergoing! So, whether it was a week for you to forget or a week for you to remember, we now enter a new week! Last week we thought about trusting God in all circumstances! One of the natural outcomes of trusting God is joy - often an unspeakable joy that bubbles within you! A joy resulting from overcoming all that life throws at you, and overcoming those hurdles! It involves taking a daily commitment to follow Jesus Christ and not just a one off. It takes commitment, not comfort, to throw off hindrances and barriers. True joy results from being willing to allow the Holy Spirit to work in you, transforming you into the image of Jesus Christ, to the praise and glory of God the Father.

All of these things being done daily in your life lead to what I am convinced is the key to the reality of a successful Christian life - that key being joy. As you grow closer to Jesus, living in peace, trust and obedience, then your spiritual life will be your natural life and your natural life be your spiritual life! Your joy will abound and shine a light giving people a reason to ask "Where do you get all your joyous hope from?". You will then be able to· share Jesus as your source of joy. A joy that is anticipatory, expectant and true! Joy comes from putting Jesus first, others next and then yourself! Go practise it this week! ~~

You can show this joy by singing, laughing, smiling, shouting praises to God, lifting hands in worship', and crying, but that is only the external part of joy. True joy also incorporates an internal joy. Real joy is when you can believe in: the mountain top when you are in your deepest valley. Abundant joy is being surrounded by darkness and still believing in 'the light'. Anticipatory joy is when amidst total confusion you still believe God has a plan of love for you. It was this type of joy that Jesus had, when in the garden praying, the night before he was betrayed, when full of mixed emotions and anguish he said "Not my will, but yours, Father!"

As sons and daughters of God, we have many reasons to be full of joy. Yet how often we forget! Here are some reasons for joy!

  • Psalm 51v8 & 12 - Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me-now let me rejoice. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you.
  • Jeremiah 15v16 - When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart's delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God of Heaven's Armies.
  • Luke 15v8-10 "Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Won't she light a lamp and sweep the entire house and search carefully until she finds it? And when she finds it, she will call in her friends and neighbours and say, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost coin.' In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God's angels when even one sinner repents."
  • 1 Peter 1v8-9 - You love Jesus Christ even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.

Do you desire to be' overflowing with joy today and this week? Go into this week with a joy that is anticipating and expectant! Do you need to hand over to Jesus a particular area of your life' where Jesus does not fully reign and have control? I pray that the Father will reveal more of Himself to you, as you daily seek His face, overcoming all hindrances to living a successful and joyful-Christian life. May the Holy Spirit who lives within you, if you are a Christian, continue to transform you into the image of the Son Jesus Christ, and all to the praise and glory of God the Father. Amen.

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Think Spot - 11th July 2011

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G’day and welcome to Partake! Welcome also to Monday and our Think Spot together!

Last Monday we looked at serving God where ever you are with a clear conscience. How did you get on with doing it?

This week we look at a follow on from that to meekness. What is meekness? Isn't meekness, merely weakness? That's what we are told often enough by people outside the church! Yet meekness is not weakness! Meekness is giving up our personal rights to God alone!

A meek person is one who claims no personal rights of their own, and who is willing to yield all possessions and personal rights to God.  A meek person sees these things as being loaned by God for His work and glory. Being meek in all situations takes a strong character, for example Moses (Numbers 12:1-3).

Giving up your rights and all you own to God alone, is talked about often in the Bible. Some of the results of giving up your rights to God can be found in: - Psalm 22:26; Psalm 25:9; Psalm 37:8-11; Psalm 149:4 Isaiah 29:19; Matthew 11:28-30. (1.15)

As followers of Jesus you and I need to give up our own rights and possessions to Him because:

  • You and I belong to God (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)#
  • We are instructed to be meek by Jesus (Luke 9:23)
  • It follows the example. of the New Testament church (Acts 5:32)

When we insist on our own personal rights and those rights are violated, the main consequences are anger and anxiety. They occur when we try to control or change something God never intended us to change or control. When we react and resist, we deny God His right to do what; He wants to do. When we get angry and when we worry, these are signs that there are rights God wants us to yield to Him.

How do you yield rights and possessions over to God?

Firstly, identify them! Check where in your life anger and or anxiety exist. Then ask the Holy Spirit to work on your heart, prayerfully considering each area, yielding all to Jesus. When you do that, God becomes responsible for those areas.

Secondly, expect God to test His rights. Having handed them to God, He may allow situations to occur which will deny you these rights, to see if that right was really given to Him. It may be necessary to once again yield that right to Jesus. As you respond to each test, meekness develops.

Go into this week, knowing that God is at work in you! You are to be His servants and you are not your own! You were bought at a price by God! Through the meekness of Jesus Christ' work on the cross.

Father I pray that as we give our personal rights to you, that you give us strength to overcome with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives within us as your children. We ask this in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ! Amen!

Praying also for a cousin of a friend of mine. Her name is Karen and she is in a coma due to a brain haemorrhage.  Father we lift Karen to you now and ask You go restore Karen to full health either through Your own hand or through the work of the medical staff. Be with her friends and family, comfort them and encompass them in your arms of compassion. Amen!

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Think Spot - 18th July 2011

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G’day and welcome to Partake! Welcome also to Monday and our Think Spot together!

G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 18th July 2011!

Matthew 11v28-30 records these words of Jesus Christ. "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

Are not those amazing words? Not just anybody could say them. If the person who said them couldn't actually fulfil that promise, that would be one of the biggest hoaxes in all of history. But Jesus Christ is no hoax and he is able to fulfil those words and live up to the promises he makes. He is totally trustworthy.

We don't like to ask for help.  We are trained as children to be independent and not to rely on anybody else for anything ever.  But this is contrary to what Jesus is about.  To rely fully on ourselves for all things is to walk by sight and commit the sin of pride. To rely on Jesus and ask Him for help in all things is to walk by faith and with humility. True independence and freedom comes from being dependent on Jesus Christ and not being held back by anything or anyone else, such as family and our own wealth and possessions.

How are you doing at the start of this new week? Maybe you are feeling desolation and regret caused by decisions made sometime in your past. Give them up willingly to Jesus and don't keep trying to take it back like a security blanket!

Are you feeling abandoned and lonely? Let Jesus encompass you in an embrace of compassion and let the Holy Spirit comfort and counsel you..

Or perhaps are you feeling tired, burnt out and burdened?. Let Jesus give you the strength to endure! Give the burden to Jesus and let Him take the weight for you.

Maybe you need to make a major decision and don't know what to do. Seek the wisdom of Jesus in making that decision. He will help if you ask. That's all part of Jesus being Jesus.

It may well be that you are being overwhelmingly tempted to sin against God, another person or even yourself? You cant resist for too long if you do it in your own strength, because you will eventually succumb to it. But if you ask God to help you overcome the temptation, He will do it - if you allow Him control and use your own self-control! After all, self-control is one of the evidences of the Holy Spirit working in you!

We all get those feelings of regret, desolation, abandonment, loneliness, despair, burdened and temptation. Feelings are important, because they are part of the human experience and if we didn't have them, we would be merely mindless androids. But feelings can also be very misleading.  As Christians, we have to take it by faith that Jesus is there for us through those times. Because you are lonely, doesn't mean you are alone.  Because you are tempted, doesn't meant that you have already committed the sin. Take it by faith that Jesus is answering desperate cries for help and is helping you. Take a few seconds now in this short silence to hand over these things to Jesus and ask him to help you.

Or it may just be that you are starting the week and you are feeling great and enjoying your dynamic relationship with God! Then keep going and letting Jesus be your strength, your wisdom and your help.  But don't keep it to yourself - that would be selfish! Go to others you know who are in need, helping them where you can with an encouraging word or helping to supply their need. Be the practical and imaginative answer to their prayers.

Go into this new week, confident that Jesus is able to help you in every situation you face. Ask him to come to you, and He will - just as He has done for countless millions. Thank you.

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Think Spot - 1st August 2011

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 1st August 2011!

Obedient Life

As a Christian you are to be a little Jesus! In your local communities, wherever you happen to live, work, study or be! You are to live a life of obedience, of and to, Jesus Christ! For you are being transformed by the Holy Spirit who lives inside you! You are to be totally and willingly obedient to Him! Obedience, not out of some kind of slavish duty or ritual, but obedience borne from willing loving God and loving others.

Imagine

People will know you are a follower of Jesus, if you are obedient to Him, practically showing love to all! Imagine the community where you are transformed for Jesus Christ! Imagine your community filled with people seeking to know about our Jesus, because you and other Christians were sacrificing their time and possessions! Imagine the communities you are involved with wanting to give Jesus the glory and honour in every aspect of life!

Transformation

Transformed communities of people devoted to Jesus and experiencing the power of the Holy Spirit in bringing people back to God the Father! Loving God and loving each other as He commanded would help do this in your local community!

Be Obedient! Be bold! Be strong! Be courageous!

But you need to be obedient to Jesus Christ in both small and large things.

Jesus said in John 14:21 "Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them."

You will face pressure to disobey Him, even sometimes from those within your church. But if He has commanded you to do something for Him, you are to obey Him. It is far better to obey God and disappoint people than to obey people and disobey God.

Go into this week, lovingly willing to be obedient to God! Trust in Him and ask Him for the strength to be lovingly obedient to Him. He will help as you ask! It can sometimes be very difficult to be obedient to God, particularly as some people, even other Christians, will try to get you to disobey. Be strong in the Lord! Be bold! Be courageous! Need help? Then ask somebody to pray with you! Then be prepared for opportunities to be lovingly obedient to Jesus – in small and big things!

Prayer

A Prayer to help you this week.

Father, help us to live obediently to you. May the Holy Spirit encourage us as we seek to live worthily of Jesus Christ, in obedience to Him. Father, it is in His name we pray in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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Think Spot - 8th August 2011

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 8th of August 2011. Today we have a special guest, Pauline, who is going to share some thoughts with you. Over to you, Pauline!

Matthew 6:14-15 "For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins."

God takes the forgiveness of others very seriously. Notice it does NOT say forgive others if they are sorry for hurting you, or forgive others if you can understand why they behaved in that way. We are to forgive everyone who has wronged us full stop.

In Matthew 18:21-22, "Peter came to Jesus and asked, ‘Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?'  Jesus answered, ‘I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.'" Jesus meant that we have to go on forgiving someone who hurts us again and again... No matter how many times they hurt us.

Forgiving someone means not telling others what they did to us so we can get sympathy. It means doing good things for them, praying for them blessing them. Matt 5:44 says "Love your enemies and pray for your persecutors." Luke 6:35 says "Love your enemies, do good to them" and Romans 12:20 commands "If your enemy is hungry feed him."

If someone has hurt you so badly that you find you self replaying what they did in your mind. Try thinking of something kind that the person has done for you, every time their misdemeanour pops into your thinking. If that is not possible, then just actively think about something completely different. It will get to the point that you can think of the person without thinking of what they did, though this can take years.

Actually, like every other thing that God asks us to do, forgiving others is in our best interests. Being angry with someone else just hurts us - it doesn't affect the other person at all. Not forgiving leads to bitterness and resentment which eats away at us from within and can lead to physical symptoms as well.

So forgiving others should be a priority   if you're a Christian.

A prayer for this week:

Father, thank you that you were and are willing to forgive us for the wrongs we have done against you! Help us with the power of the Holy Spirit to forgive us and also may we be willing to forgive ourselves and accept the forgiveness of others. Thank you for the cross of your Son, Jesus Christ, so that forgiveness is possible! We ask these things through the name of the Son, Jesus! Amen!

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Think Spot - 15th August 2011

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 15th of August 2011. Today we have a special guest, Pauline, who is going to share some thoughts with you. Over to you, Pauline!

I believe God allows us to go through hard times for many reasons. One is that it makes us less self dependant and more God dependant; they help us to recognise our need for God. Another is that it gets rid of some of our character traits which are unholy, part of refining us - such as pride, and materialism. A new car pales into insignificance when you lose your health, for instance. Going through difficult times reveals our true values, character traits and beliefs. Hardship shows us what our strengths and weaknesses are. We need to know what our weaknesses are so we can ask God to help us with them. 2 Corinthians 12:9 says "Gods power is made perfect in our weakness."

Allowing us to suffer and endure hardship, is an act of love on God's part. It tests, refines and perfects our faith Going thro' suffering makes our faith stronger, more mature and complete. Persistence through hardship develops our character. Romans 5:3-4 says ‘...we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.'   Endurance through faith and seeking God throughout the hard time, in order that we can walk hand in hand with Him, develops our trust in HIM. We discover hope, love and peace amidst the storm that surrounds us.

Perseverance is produced by dedicated endurance in the midst of adversity. Spiritual transformation requires perseverance just like any other human enterprise.

God promises to be with us in our present experiences on earth and in our uncertain futures. Psalm 46:1 says ‘ God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble'.  He promises that we will be with Him for Eternity. He promises to stay by our side to never leave us. He is there for us through the difficult times in our lives .

Psalm 121:3 says ‘He will not let your foot slip - He who watches over you will not slumber'. He never sleeps but is always looking out for us. He turns every situation into good for those of us who love Him. Romans 8:28 says ‘ and we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose'.  He is omnipotent, who better to have on our side, as our loving shepherd to tend and care for us. Luke 10:19 says ‘I have given you authority to...overcome all the power of the enemy'  Jesus defeated Satan when He died , descended into hell ,then rose again. He is tirelessly working for us, who or what then shall we fear?

Prayer

And now a prayer to take us into a new week.

Father, thank you that no matter what happens this week, you are with us in our troubles and sufferings. Thank you for the Holy Spirit who empowers us to persevere. Thank you that you know the pain of our suffering, Lord Jesus Christ, because you suffered and died as part of your humanity. Amen!

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Think Spot - 22nd August 2011

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 22nd of August 2011.

As I reflect upon the life of Jesus as given to us through the Gospels, I see that in his interaction with people he exhibits his loveliness. An example of this is found in Matthew 20:29-34

As Jesus and his disciples were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed him. Two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was going by, they shouted, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!"

The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!"

Jesus stopped and called them. "What do you want me to do for you?" he asked.

"Lord," they answered, "we want our sight."

Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.

See how Jesus exhibited his loveliness to those two men, through an act of compassion and mercy! Jesus gave those two men great joy in receiving their sight and enabled them to overcome the rejection by the crowd! Those two men could testify that Jesus is altogether lovely and lovely altogether! Jesus is beyond compare for the things He has done and the things He will do. Jesus Christ is altogether lovely in regard to his divinity, humanity, birth, life, ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, exultation, glorification, grace, protection, tenderness, power, wisdom, vengeance, judgment, majesty, redemption and pardon! Jesus' loveliness means I can have His incomparable inner joy when I feel defeated, dejected and discouraged. Jesus oozes loveliness!

As you go into this week, remember that when you are feeling defeated, dejected or discouraged, that Jesus joy is inside you. Joy is not necessarily loud and obtrusive but also quiet and peaceful. Allow that joy of Jesus to carry you through. Let His loveliness embrace you and allow Him control over your circumstances.

A prayer to help you into this new week: Father, we thank you for sending Jesus. We thank you Jesus that you are altogether lovely and lovely altogether. We thank you that you are with us when everybody else rejects, despises, defeats or discourages us! Amen.

Thanks for joining us on Partakers ThinkSpot! See you again real soon!

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Think Spot - 29th August 2011

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 29th of August 2011.

Romans 1:1-5

Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God-  the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures  regarding his Son, who as to his earthly life was a descendant of David,  and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. Through him we received grace and apostleship to call all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith for his name's sake.

Jesus is Unique

The first word I would use for Jesus is that He is unique - totally unique! Never before and never to be repeated again - ever! Jesus Christ is the standout person from all of history! In all of human history, Jesus Christ is incomparable!

Yet in human form, we read that during his earthly ministry he had no physical beauty that would draw people naturally to himself. We read that Jesus' body on the cross was disfigured and tortured beyond that of human likeness. His perfect life, His salvation work on the cross and His subsequent rising from the dead, is what makes Jesus Christ unique - a once and for all lifetime Messiah or Saviour for the entire world!  This great God of creation, stepping into His creation as a human, with the purpose of reconciling the world back to Himself! WOW!! Jesus' uniqueness meaning I can have an active and dynamic relationship with God.

As you go into this week may your relationship with God be active and dynamic! Go and thank Jesus Christ for his uniqueness which allows this to occur.

Prayer

Father, we thank you for Jesus Christ your Son! We thank you that because of Him, we can enter into a dynamic and active relationship with you! We ask this prayer and give you praise, through your Son and in the power of the Holy Spirit who lives inside all those who are following! Amen!

Thanks for joining us on Partakers ThinkSpot! See you again real soon!

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Think Spot - 19th September 2011

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 19th of September 2011. We have a guest today again! Welcome back Pauline as she shares some insights with you.

When we are going through a difficult time it is sometimes hard to believe that you are the apple of Gods eye. God gave me a picture once.  I asked God what I was worth. God tied a tag round my neck with a piece of string, the kind of price tag that they have in old fashioned shops.  The tag read £10, then he removed the tag and replaced it with one that read £100, then he removed that one and replaced it with one that had £1000 on it. He replaced the £1000 price tag with one that read £100,000 and then replaced that one with a million pound price tag. The final price tag simply had ONE LIFE written on it.   I find it mind blowing that God chose to let His Son die a hideously painful death so that I can enjoy a personal relationship with him that I am so valuable that even if I was the only human being that existed, God would have allowed Jesus to die on a cross for me.

Remind yourself of this fact frequently and you will get a glimpse of your father's heart. He loves you to bits and is proud of you no matter what you have done in the past - if you have said sorry and meant it - it is forgotten. The slate is completely clean. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come."

God's love for you is unconditional. God created us with a thirst to be secure, to have self worth and to have a sense of our own significance. That thirst is intended to be quenched by God himself, by His unconditional love for us and unconditional acceptance of our work.  1 John 3:1 says "How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called the children of God.! And that is what we are!" Ephesians 2:10 says "We are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepares for us in advance to do."

Unfortunately many of us try and get our security and sense of self worth from our spouses or parents.  Whilst that can be okay if we have a particularly adoring spouse or an encouraging mum and dad, it goes badly wrong if we have a critical spouse or a parent that withholds praise. Our self esteem really suffers in the case of a verbally critical spouse or parent and is affected just as badly by someone who is slow to give praise.

Galatians 4:7 "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out ‘Abba, Father.' So you are no longer a slave but a son and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir."

Our aim should be to please God and fulfil his purposes for our lives. If it is we will discover a sense of security, value and significance in God and then it will not matter if our boss does not appreciate us or if our spouse criticises us.

We should be aiming to enjoy God, to have a life of worship and to get to know God better each day. God adores us and considers us adorable. He is proud of our achievements but is so much more thrilled with our efforts to get to know Him better.

Thanks for joining us on Partakers ThinkSpot! See you again real soon!

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Think Spot - 15th July 2013


What we say as Christians is very important. The Bible is very clear on that.

1 Peter 2:1 "Therefore rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy and slander of every kind."

James 4:11-12 "Brothers do not slander one another...who are you to judge your neighbour?"

The definition of slander is words falsely spoken that damage the reputation of another or an abusive attack on a person's character or good name or to  attack the good name and reputation of someone.

So next time you go to say anything negative about someone or to criticise their actions, think again, you might be disobeying God  and breaking a command.



James 3:3-8 powerfully shows how a small thing such as the tongue is able to cause much damage. He says that the tongue is a world of evil that corrupts the whole person ...and is itself set on fire by hell.

Mark 7:20-22 states Jesus talking about words "What comes out of a man is what makes him unclean. For from within, out of men's hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit and slander. All these evils come from inside and make a man unclean."

Most of us would not consider telling a lie, as serious sin as murder but Jesus clearly does not separate them, he labels them both evil.

Again in Romans 1:29 - 32 the seriousness of slander , gossip and lying are clearly stated. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of deceit and they are gossips, slanderers. Although they know God's righteous  decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do such things but also approve of those whom practice them.



Christians are very good at gossiping but disguising it as prayerful concern. We pass on a juicy bit of information about someone and then ask the person to pray about the situation. As Christians we should not pass on any information about anyone else unless the person concerned has asked us to. It is not our place to do so even if it is for prayer.



Philippians 2:14 "Do everything without complaining or arguing. " There is nothing confusing about that command. How often do we complain about our jobs or our spouses? Or the weather? We are disobeying God when we do. God does not take disobedience lightly.

The excuse 'Everyone does it' does not wash with God when we see him face to face and He asks us why we complained so often and about so many things everyone else did it will pot be an acceptable reason. 

Our jobs, our spouses and the weather are all gifts from God, we should be thanking Him for them not grumbling about them!

1 Thessalonians 5:8 says give thanks in all circumstances it does not say give thanks in some and complain in others! So then before you say anything, think "Is what I am about to say pleasing to God.?"

Prayers

Now, a prayer to help you into this new week.

Father, we thank you for words! We thank you that we can communicate words of life to other people! Help us to use words wisely as we interact, communicate and deal with other people, especially our loved ones and work colleagues. May the Holy Spirit, guide, rebuke and counsel, as we use the amazing gift of words to us, as we seeks to live a life worthy of Jesus Christ. Amen!



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7th November 2011

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Here we are Monday again. Are you pleased? Are you ready for a new day at the office, or at college or in the factory or at a desk? You are a Christian right? So what are you thinking as you resume where you left off last week?

Did you pray before you left home? Great for that's the best way to start off. You spent a little time with the Lord in His Word and have sought his leading through the day. That is also commendable. Have you sought protection from the Lord also? Have you realised there is someone who is anxious that you don't triumph in Christ today. Someone who wants to safeguard his territory and his prisoners. So look at this day as an exciting day with all kinds of great prospects. If you are walking and talking with God you couldn't be in better company or stronger. He will be your shield and refuge a very present help in time of trouble. He is at your right hand and will be in control as you yield yourself confidently to His direction through the day. Ok a lot of routine stuff but do it as well as you can and cheerfully. But you don't know my boss? No but God does and he has you there in that place for a reason never doubt. You may not see anything terrific happen today no miracles but you are a light shining for Jesus and will make an impact upon someones day today as you come into contact just your presence in the same room. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify God in Heaven.

Trust in the Lord and be not afraid. Watch your behaviour and enjoy God's presence with you. You are in the centre of his will and its going to be a great Monday. Our confidence is in the Lord.

Psalm 23 reads “He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake” Believe and act upon those words spoken by David and at the end of day you may well be able to also say with him “My cup runs over”

Here is a brief prayer to help us into the new week.

Dear loving heavenly Father,

I place today into your hands and will do what I can to first please you in the way I work today. If I am at home looking after my children help me cope and enjoy them. If I am at work and have an awkward situation help me to know what to do. If I have to rebuke a worker under me help me to do it in a helpful way and not a way that will hinder a good working relationship. I belong to you Lord help me display that without showing off or arrogance. You gave your life for me help me dedicate my life to you this day. May Jesus be seen in all I think, say and do. In Jesus name I pray Amen

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14th November 2011

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21st November 2011

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28th November 2011

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2nd January 2012

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16th January 2012

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John Bunyan

Amazingly expanding ministry

Last Monday we looked at John the Apostle on the Island of Patmos and how although hindered in his preaching God allowed him to be placed there by his enemies for another purpose, to receive the Revelation from God of the end times which would be recorded permanently in Scriptures for the world to see for all time.

His ministry was amazingly extended through prohibition. So today I want to remind you of another great Christian who was put in prison for preaching the gospel in the open air and overnight behind bars received a revelation by way of a dream which he transferred to a book which has become a best seller next to the Bible worldwide. His name is well known, John Bunyan formerly a tinker by trade from Bedford and the author of Pilgrims Progress.

Pilgrims Progress is a fantastic book to accompany the Bible on your bookshelf at home. With amazing dexterity John paints word picture after picture of the Christian life from the seeker to the finder, to the sharer of his faith to the persecuted for his faith.

It is full of the adventurers of a man who begins his journey leaving his home and family with a heavy load on his back representing sin and his deep longing to be rid of it. In his hands he has the Book. He comes to Evangelist who points to the house of the Interpreter (The Holy Spirit) who shows him the way to the Cross where there is a bottomless pit in front of it where when Pilgrim looks to the cross, his heavy load disappears down the hole gone for ever. Then the journey really begins with all kinds of people to be met on the road to death and glory. Some are planted by God and some by Satan. Now his name is changed from pilgrim to Christian for he is transformed. This book is still a best seller today and multitudes have been helped by this incredible dream translated to paper so we can read it and benefit from it. His ministry also was amazingly extended by prohibition.

The point I am making again this week is that if you are a Christian and your path to Christian service has been hindered or you are pushed aside for another to take your place or because of your age don't think your ministry is finished.

Again, If Satan isn't opposing your ministry then you probably are not where you are meant to be. Sometimes what appears to be a blocking of your path or something evil happening in your life may well turn out to be an amazing step forward for you into another more meaningful and fruitful ministry. Remember God is sovereign over all. We should never forget that. Satan has power, but God is way over the top of Satan and even uses Satan's actions to eventually further His own glory. He alone is Almighty.

Keep your eyes fixed upon The Lord. He will never, no never be thwarted by our enemies.

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23rd January 2012

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G’day and welcome to Partakers Thinkspot on Monday, the 23rd of January 2012. To help you into a new week, Jim shares with us about Job (a man of integrity), suffering, compassion and Gladys Ayleward! View the video or listen/download the audio mp3 to see what Jim has to say!

Joy’s Prayer

Lord, we are often complaining when we have nothing like the experiences of Job or others like Gladys Aylward to compare with. Forgive us for our moaning and grumbling. Help us to see as the scriptures say our 'light afflictions are but for a moment ' . When we think of Jesus and His sufferings for us we are put to shame. Thank you we have such a wonderful God as indeed You are to comfort us in our afflictions. “Bless the Lord O my soul and forget not all His benefits who forgives our iniquities, heals all of our sicknesses and diseases and whose mercy ,reaches unto the heavens. ...Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, serve the Lord with gladness” Lord help us to do this for Your names sake

Amen

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20th February 2012

G'day and welcome to Partakers ThinkSpot on Monday, the 20th of February 2012. Let's go over to Jim and Joy and discover what they are sharing with us today. Over to you, Jim!

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Its a new week and a new day and you are bursting to tell someone about Jesus. Right? No you say I freeze up and fear. Help!!

If there was ever a man who couldn't keep the good news of Jesus to himself it was this man Philip we read about him in the book of Acts. Looking at this man, what do we notice that we can hopefully relate to and learn from his example? Maybe we can follow his example as we prepare ourselves for a new week witnessing for Jesus.

We take up the story in Acts 8 Philip the evangelist is having a great time in Samaria making Christ known as Saviour Healer and Deliverer. Philip was saying "listen as I tell you of the all powerful Jesus Christ who can transform peoples lives." As he preached the good news of Jesus the whole city is being turned to God, many miracles occurring and many were saved, healed and delivered from all kinds of demonic influences. Revival was taking place.

Philip must have been overjoyed to be there. Philip was having the time of his life.

But you know something we can get so caught up with evangelism and the excitement of it where we are, as people around us are beginning to see God in a new light and yes enjoying God, that we easily forget there is a big world out there and God is caring for it and is eager for people of all nations to come to know Jesus and experiencing the joy and peace to be found in Him. So my first thought to share that I see here is that in meeting peoples needs in evangelism God is not only looking at Samaria but always has a much bigger picture in view.

God the Almighty who knows everything is all powerful and sees the whole world in one view. He sees every country at the same moment and is working out his plans and purposes in them. So into this chapter and story where Philip is one of the main characters walks or rather rides another important person who is going to play a very important place in God's strategy for converting not another city like Samaria but a larger country called Ethiopia. So God had a plan. It begins with linking up Philip with this important man on his journey to Ethiopia. A man who was although a worshipper of God was desperate in needing help to understanding the good news of Jesus the Messiah as Lord and King. He didnt know the gospel. No one had told him.

This man held a very high rank in the Ethiopian governemet. He was the Queen of Ethiopia's treasurer. A man who would have tremendous influence in the nation. He had been to Egypt perhaps for business reasons . But nothing happens by chance inb this world does it? Certainly not as far as God is concerned or His [people.He had spent time at the temple worshipping but lacked knowledge and understanding of the truth concerning Jesus. So how is God going to introduce his truth into Ethiopia? Philip is the chosen vessel to carry the truth to this man as he travels to his home land of Ethiopia in a horse driven royal chariot.

Philip is transported somehow into a desert region by God which was on the route the man from Ethiopia is travelling on. Surprised? God knew exactly what He was doing. Isn't He amazing? Wow!! But I wonder if Philip wanted to move from Spring Harvest where it was all happening in Samaria to go to a solitary place. There could have been no bigger contrast. Any objections that Philip might have had are certainly are certainly not expressed in this narrative. You could say Philip had no say in the matter. God simply placed him where he wanted hin to be to serve in the purposes of God. Philip may well have prayed that morning "Lord lead me today to those you want to reach with the gospel. I am willing to go anywhere for you" A complete readiness to go wherever God sends him with this wonderful gospel message!

First lesson - BE READY : The Ethiopian is in his horse drawn chariot reading an Old Testament manuscriptfrom Isiaiah53. Philip sees him and hears him reading looking puzzled.

Second lesson - BE BRAVE : Philip shows not only he is ready but also BRAVE as he approaches the rich man. Can you imagine it? Two complete strangers meeting and the question asked is "Do you understand what you are reading?

Third lesson - BE PREPARED : Philip is PREPARED to teach the man the way to God through Jesus. He wants the man to understand the glorious message of salvation through Jesus. He KNOWS THE SCRIPTURES in order to explain the passage the man is reading from. Philip was chosen to show the man what he needed to see and the man was resding a passage the Lord knew he would be reading to prepare him for his meeting with Philip. God is truly sovereign in all the affairs of the nations and of course here in this desert place.

Isaiah 53 is clearly understood by Philip and he goes through this great chapter in our Bibles explaining that the Messiah spoken of here is Jesus. My friends I do not know how well you know this chapter in Isaiah but it is a great chapter of prophecy concerning Jesus and yet his name is not mentioned here. But if "you have eyes to see" when you look in the gospels and see their fulfilment recorded 800 years before Christ the Messiah came into the world It is astounding.

Be assured, God's Word is absolutely true and can be trusted without question.

So as you witness for Jesus use the tool He used and was so effective with.

Joy's Prayer

Dear loving heavenly Father! We worship you for your greatness. You are all seeing, all knowing, all powerful. We are so thankful for that knowledge. You are so powerful that you take such an interest in each one of us in our individual lives. Your strength is always so welcome as we feel so inadequate for many tasks, but we are so thankful that you have said, that by your Spirit you will empower us to do all we need to do including sharing our faith in Jesus. Please help us to be effective witnesses and may we see the fruit from our labours and glorify You in Heaven! In Jesus' Name, Amen

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27th February 2012

G'day and welcome to Partakers ThinkSpot on Monday, the 27th of February 2012. Play the audio and see how Jim and Joy are challenging you to live your faith out this week!

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5th March 2012

G'day and welcome to Partakers ThinkSpot on Monday, the 5th of March 2012. Play the audio and see how Jim and Joy are challenging you to live your faith out this week!

The Offence of the Gospel

“You are upsetting me with what you are saying about that Bible teaching and Jesus Christ. I think I am a Christian and I dont need to go to church to be a Christian. I keep the Ten Commandments and I say the Lord's prayer every night but I dont need to get as serious as you do and spend so much times in church and thinking about God”

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Have you heard that before? Have you been in a similar discussion with someone and they have become so angry they were glaring at you and absolutely mad at you? You were left alone as they stormed off and left you shaking !!

Dont be alarmed it has happened to a number of us who were left thinking “Where did I go wrong? Should I have compromised or not said so much” “What a mess up I am shattered and weak at the knees.”

Friends, we are called to be faithful and providing we have spoken the truth in love we have not done wrong we have faithfully spoken but because of our compassion and concern we may have become a little overheated ourselves but dont be overly distressed. Be thankful they reacted at all!! Some people it dosnt go anywhere near their hearts they simply say things like “You know something I feel sorry for you its obviously something I dont feel I need but if its ok for you then go ahead but dont try to involve me I am not interested.”

When you speak of Jesus Christ and the gospel people get upset. They do not mind hearing of him as a 'rabbi' or 'good teacher' but Saviour?? “I dont need a Saviour” they say. They cannot understand that we all need a Saviour. We all have slipped off God'd pathway for our lives and cannot get back on ourselves. We have gone astray and cannot climb onto the narrow way . We dont even acknowledge we have ever been on the broad way leading to destruction. “All we like sheep have gone astray”(Isaiah 53) and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all” A prophetic utterance from Isaiah concerning the Messiah. Who is the Messiah? John the Baptist speaking of Jesus describing Him said “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” (John 1:29;)

John the Baptist was a wonderfful example of a brave evangelist speaking out about His Saviour. John spoke out about sin, judgement and people got angry at him and to keep him quiet he was placed in prison and then died for his faithful witness to our Saviour.

Jesus spoke very highly of this man and his witness.

No, its not easy, witnessing is not simple and it takes a lot of time, patience, boldness and a lot of prayer. It can be very hard, sometimes painful and slogging work especially if you live with them !! Relatives will think you are mad (Even Jesus relatives thought this of Him)

Neverthless we are encouraged to take the God given opportunities and not to be surprised at anger when people are angry with us and either walk away or try to argue with us. They have their own ideas and do not want to be 'rocked' by another view.

They may ask awkward unanswerable questions where God alone knows the answers. Especially in regard to sorrow which comes into all our lives and why certain things happen which we consider could be avoided. They then smirk, and say things like “dont try tell me anything” and “Jesus was only a man.” Remember the christian believes all which is said about Jesus in the Bible and know He truly is the Son of God. Remember always when witnessing that God is only a prayer away. They cannot stop you praying.

Friend, when we witness for Jesus we are doing right and although it can be painful it will bring its dividends in the future. God calls us to be faithful and to persevere and to sow seed at every opportunity. “The night comes when no one can work” said Jesus and surely he made the best of every moment of the day and prayed through the night also. What a supreme example for us to follow. He also said If I suffer so it will be for my followers ” also he said in the sermon on the mount “Blessed are you who are persecuted for righteousness sake for yours is the kingdom of heaven.”(Matthew 5:10-12;)

So what exactly gets up peoples noses. Ourselves or our words? It is the gospel message. People do not want to be told they are insufficient of themselves. They admit thay are not perfect but ask them if they are prepared to follow God's teachings and change their lives to suit God and there will be opposition. So dont be surprised and do not give up there is a reward in heaven waiting for you for faithful witnessing. (Matthew 5:12;)

Joy's Prayer

Dear Lord and Heavenly Father

Thank you for your promised presence with us in all that we do for you. Thank you also that we know You love us always and we want to share that love. Your truth is a loving message of salvation but we encounter opposition and sometimes it is ugly. Please help us to press on into satan's domain and be ready to give a reason of the hope within us and Lord help us to remember we are the head and not the tail. We have all of heaven on our side. So give us confidence as we step out into the day and help us to keep close to you so we are all the more confident You are speaking through us and our lives. We love you. Thank you for the success you promise us although we may have to wait for results.

In Jesus Name

Amen

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  • sandra delemare

    This is spot on! made me think, was John the Baptist the first Christian martyr? When people get angry, unless we deliberately wound them up, it’s their problem, we’ve touched a nerve - they are not in a good place to listen to reasoned argument - our job then is to pray.

    Mar 5, 2012 at 8:09 am
  • davegroberts

    Thanks Sandra! Will let Jim and Joy know you have left a comment!!

    Mar 8, 2012 at 5:47 am

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5th March 2012

G'day and welcome to Partakers ThinkSpot on Monday, the 12th of March 2012. Play the audio and see how Jim and Joy are challenging you to live your faith out this week!

Why Read the Bible?

“Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe practice it to be holy.” These words are written in the front of my Bible. They remind me how important the Bible is to me. It is my food and drink. It is described that way in the Bible It is also described as Honey as well as a hammer. A lamp and light to my path. Strong meat, a sword, milk and I am sure a good number of other words because it is so important and so indispensable to the Believer.

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Men and women around the globe have died rather than recant words from this book explaining Who Jesus is.  It contains the very words of God spoken to 40 writers over 1600 years and today speaks still as loud to billions upon billions who pick it up and begin to realise what a treasure is contained here. The very Creator of the Universe, the Maker of sun moon and stars speaks to us from this very book. The Bible is also described as quick and powerful, pure and unadulterated, strengthening and stimulating,

It is above all books and is a world's best seller. . It has been translated into many different languages and is still being translated into the language of tribes who need to hear God's Truth today. Above all information in this amazing Book is the incredible story of God the Creator of the vast Universe. It is made out of nothing. Even more incredible it tells the story of man falling out with His Maker and the  story of how God reconciled the world to Himself through His Son Jesus Christ.

It explains the way man is to live his life in every detail and the source of His needs to be met and the very purpose of his being here on earth. In fact no stone is left unturned in explaining all we need to know in this world into which God our Creator has placed us concerning our lives and our future.

My friend, if this book is so wonderful and is so helpful why is it that it is often pushed to one side in so many homes? Why are so many Bibles finding their way into charity shops and even being thrown away?  Because the enemy of our souls Satan does not want us to find the way to God and Heaven. He wants us to be uninformed how to live out our lives . He wants us to despair rather than find the answers to our many questions.

Do you remember the words I read at the beginning of this talk? Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, practice it to be holy. We need to get to know the author and ask His help as we look into its many pages of wisdom.  We need to set up a daily plan for reading it and digesting its contents. We need to realize  how unsafe this world is for us without the knowledge of The Holy and the vital need of His  Presence with us every step of our earthly journey to our final destiny. We need to take time to be holy and spend much time with His Word.

We live in a world of darkness and need the  Light of Gods Word to show us the way ahead. We need to know how insufficient we are and  our need of direction and and redirection when we have the left the straight path and wandered off. Practice it to be holy. To be like Jesus we need to have a soaking of God's Word into our lives daily,  to be washed by the pure water of God's Word and to be filled anew with His Spirit Who explain the Scriptures to us. May we all find some more time to spend in this wonderful Book and delight ourselves in it. If not it will be to our cost and will affect our destiny.

Joy's Prayer

Dear Lord and Heavenly Father,

Teach us to revere the Bible more than we do. To have it by our side, ready to be referred to rather than  hidden away out of our sight only to be brought out next Sunday to take to church with us like an ornament. It is our daily manna so please give us an appetite for it to even a craving for it when we miss a days reading. Imprint upon our minds to read it to be wise, believe it to be safe and practice it to be holy.

Sorry, if we have neglected it, especially if we have been afraid to look into its pages in case it made us feel guilty of sins we have committed. Lord may we be an open book before you ready to be spoken to by You and ready to readjust our lives when shown the error of our ways.

If downcast lift us up through its many pages of encouragements where your people have been in similar circumstances and needed to be strengthened by you. Lord we love the psalms, may we read and see ourselves there with David and others who faced difficult times and discover how they found their peace and rest in You. Lord we do love you and thank you for the Bible .May we treasure it for ever.

In Jesus Name

Amen

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4th June 2012

G'day and welcome to Partakers ThinkSpot on Monday, the 4th of June 2012. Play the audio and see how Jim and Joy are challenging you to live your faith out this week!

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The missing jewel of worship

Recently in the UK as well as in many others in numerous countries, we settled down to watch a programme entitled 'Britain has talent'. One performance and its affect upon millions of people will stay in our memories for a very long time.

When these two shy young teenagers came on stage, sniggers of laughter rippled through the audience as well as some wry smiles among the judges. "Things cannot get any worse" one of the judges muttered under his breath. Little did any of us know what was about to happen within seconds of those thoughts.

The song entitled "The Prayer" has been sung many times by a variety of famous performers but this night's performance was incredible right from the start. When asked if they thought they could win Jonathan aged 17 and Charlotte aged16 offered a quiet hope so with a shrug of their shoulders.

However, as the first five notes were sung the whole audience were on their feet clapping and shouting with hands lifted high above their heads as they enjoyed the beautiful outstanding voices of these two young performers. Loud as the applause was when they began singing the volume increased as the pure notes continued, the high notes so clear and warming all of our hearts.

Tears were flowing in the audience unashamedly and when they concluded the judges and all stood to their feet applauding continually.

The four judges, the whole audience and many millions who viewed it on TV were overawed as indeed my wife Joy and I were.

"A future star for sure" Simon Cowell said and the other judges were in total agreement.

Amanda Holden one of the other panel judges said "What a privilege it has been to be here to night to hear you."

On Youtube afterwards nearly 2,000,000 have already seen the replay and this is only four days after the performance as I bring these words to you.

As I pondered this momentous occasion and its effects I thought "What are we doing?" as we clapped and cried and longed to hear more. Is this not a form of worship? I considered. Are we so thrilled with what we have seen and heard? They were brilliant, they deserved our praise.

So then, do we feel the same on a Sunday in Church as we come to worship God? Are we caught up with the occasion as we stand to worship? God is invisible but we know He is present in our gatherings, isn't He?

Someone has described worship as 'to feel the wonder of God in our hearts." Do we do that? I am not necessarily thinking of the singing time but the prayers and the preaching also. Do we come away saying it was a Wow!! Meeting as we caught a glimpse of the beauty of the Lord and His magnificence? Were we compelled to say to others afterwards "Wasn't that fantastic" I can't wait to come back again tonight to sing, to worship my wonderful Lord and to hear more about Him I cannot get enough of Him."

Only today I heard of a church in London, a church that has grown phenomenally over the past few years and huge crowds of people, especially young people are arriving 30 minutes before services to make sure they get a seat. And I am referring to a church in Great Britain.

This church has 800 children in Sunday School. Packed to the doors morning and evening for the services. What is the Wow Factor? Why aren't all our churches like that where people just cannot wait to get into their seats in church? Yes I hear it from individuals here and there who talk like that. But why some and not all? I shared this thought with a man who is a director of a mission. He said from his knowledge of many churches in Great Britain it all comes down to one thing. A deep love for God.

In Revelation 2-3 we find churches are rebuked by our Lord for "luke warmness". Of "leaving their first love" In the book of Joel in the Old Testament this was the deep concern of the prophet Joel as He said "You are a religious people but your heart is not in it, return to God that He may bless you"

Should this not be the cry from each one of our hearts from the worship leaders down to all worshippers. Do we really love God deeply for are there not many reasons why we should do so? "Unto God be the glory great things He has done". The Theatre audience, I think, fell in love with Jonathan and Charlotte on Saturday I am convinced of that. They were so humble and putting their souls and hearts into their audition, the quality of the singing was unbelievable and they are so young!!

Coming back to our churches are we getting so used to the method of worshipping God in our churches that even if He withdrew His Holy Spirit we would not notice. Could that really happen?

As I read Isaiah from chapters 60-64 on revival surely the cry from our hearts should be the same as the evangelist Prophet "Lord rend the heavens and come down and enflame our hearts to love you more and worship you seeing your greatness and responding with passion. Let me know what you think? I am sure I am not alone with my concern for all the churches.

Joys Prayer

Dear Loving Heavenly Father

Have we simply come to church to sing hymns and listen to the sermon in a mechanical fashion? Have we held on to passions of our own that have taken first place instead of Sunday worship? We still attend with our feet but our hearts are not in what we are doing.

Maybe whatever our involvement is in church is we have only done our duty without feeling the wonder of God in our hearts and desiring to express it. Lord forgive us and give us a heart for worship and a desire for a fresh commitment to You with all our hearts

In Jesus name

Amen

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25th June 2012

G'day and welcome to Partakers ThinkSpot on Monday, 25th of June 2012. Play the audio and see how you are challenged to live your faith out this week!

The most famous verse in the Bible is probably this one. I wonder if you have heard or read it. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Isn’t that simply amazing! Love! God is love! Every exhibition of love, even by those who deny His existence, is an example of God’s love. God’s love is also seen in all tenses – past, present and future. Past - God has loved you. Present - God is loving you. Future - God will love you! Amazing! WOW!

Moreover, God's love in the Bible is seen as unfailing, everlasting, intimate, sacrificial, unbreakable, all-conquering, personal, great, immeasurable and all-knowing. This is seen supremely in the Cross of Jesus Christ. When Jesus died for the sins of the world on the cross, it was supreme love overcoming all that is not love. Even when great acts of evil are committed in the world, love is all around. Love continues despite such acts.

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How are we to respond to this love of God?

The Apostle John in 1 John 3:16 says “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.

Further on in 1 John 4:15-16, John writes “If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

Our motivation as Christians is to love and to be love. This is a love, which is sacrificial and self-less. It is tough love which is of service to other people. Loving and serving others, sacrificially, are the primary ways of showing you love God! It is easiest to love your friends. But Jesus commanded that his followers also love their enemies (Matthew 5:43-45)! Now that is very radical and can be difficult! We see constantly in the media and elsewhere, that regards our enemies, we are to be confrontational or at best to just ignore them!

Love and serve everyone

How is it possible to love our enemies? It is only with the help of God and His abundant grace towards us! We depend on the Holy Spirit who lives inside all Christians to empower and guide! To only love those who love you is what is expected by people everywhere as normal behaviour. But as a Christian, if you are one, you are to do more! You are to be seen to love more than other people. You don't have to like others as friends, but you do have to love them as fellow human beings!

Go!

Go into this week, being prepared to show your love of Jesus Christ, remaining close to Him and serving other people generously with abundant grace-filled love! By loving and serving others, you become God's arms and legs in a physical world. Give people a smile! If you are happy, let your face show it to others! Help that work colleague! Help that unemployed person to find work. One of the greatest limitations you face in loving and serving other people is a severe lack of imagination! Ask God to expand your imagination to love and serve; as well as asking for the opportunities to do them. Loving and serving are hallmarks of an authentic Christian life. Love continues even amidst chaos and turmoil all around. Go and be part of the continuing of love.

Prayer

Father, we thank you, that you are love! We thank you Jesus, that you demonstrated great love by going to the cross and showing your love for the world by dying on the cross! Holy Spirit enflame our imagination and cause us to desire to show love to others – even others who we think don’t deserve it! As we go into this week, O God, remind us to love you wholeheartedly and to love others sacrificially.

For we ask this, O Father of Love, in the name of the Son of Love, Jesus Christ and in the power of the Holy Spirit of Love.

Amen.

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2nd July 2012

G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 2nd of July 2012.

My daughter at college this afternoon had a moment she will treasure for the rest of her life. She shook hands with Royalty. I will explain. The Prince of Wales, Prince Charles was visiting her college to open a new sports hall. My daughter stood at a rail specially erected for the Princes safety. and when he came along towards her she put her hand out, he took it, shook it and at the same time she asked a question ? May I marry your son? He smilingly replied "I will talk to him about it." This made all my family smile.

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This was quite remarkable as only last Sunday night I had been preaching in our local Baptist church on the subject of amazing Grace. One of my illustrations about this amazing grace was that in Romans 5 we read, "Having been justified through faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through whom we have access into this grace wherein we stand.” Having looked up the Greek word for access I was shown two word pictures to illustrate its meaning. The first was a seafaring term. The second was as if you had received a ticket, a free invitation into the very presence of royalty!

You might well be asked, “What would you like that royal person to do for you?” The hymn writer wrote "You are coming to a king, large petitions with you bring. you can never ask too much...” We have gained access into God's presence through our Lord Jesus Christ and we have all things in Jesus Christ. Solomon was asked by God what he desired. Very wisely he asked for wisdom to rule God's people. The Lord was so impressed by that request He decided to give Solomon far more than he could ever have dreamed of.

Esther also had to go into the King's presence on an urgent matter on behalf of her fellow Jews requesting their safety from an evil man called Haaman one of the kings officers. She would only be allowed to enter his royal highnesses presence if her held out his silver scepter to her. She asked for fervent prayer and fasting to be made by her countrymen and as a result when she approached the royal throne he did hold out the silver scepter. More-so he granted her request and spared the suffering of the Jews and had Haaman put to death for his cruelty.

May I suggest we seek a much closer walk with our wonderful God and realize He is far more swilling to give than we are to believe to receive from Him. Because we are now in relationship with both Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father we are family and we may ask that we may receive, seek that we may find and knock that we may enter there is no barrier other than sin to prevent us entering His Holy Presence. May God enable us to see more of His wonderful grace and He see more of Himself reflected in us that we may glorify Him and He be glorified in us.

Joys Prayer.

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father, you are an amazing God and you can incredibly surprise us. At such times that we cannot help ourselves but to praise and delight in you. you are an awesome God and we worship you. We have to admit to ourselves that we are sometimes guilty of taking you for granted unconscious of our 24/7 relationship with you. We perhaps do not come as close as we aught into your Presence because of sin affecting our fellowship with you.

Oh Lord forgive us and help us to see how foolish we are to neglect such amazing grace and the deeper fellowship that is possible with you and the chance to see you working from much closer at hand as we give ourselves more fully into your service and forgetting ourselves and what we desire.

When we start the day with you, fully trusting ourselves to you anything can happen. We may be permitted to see a greater glimpse of your glory as you work in and through our witness for you. Thank you Lord for alerting this to us today, as we have been considering the wonderful fellowship that is possible for us to enter into, as you hold out the amazing sceptre of grace in Jesus Christ for us to receive, because you love us so much. Thank you Lord we commit this day into Your hands and expect to see something more of your amazing grace working in us for your glory. We want to shine before others that they may see you in us and that they might get to know you for themselves.

In Jesus name, Amen

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16th July 2012

G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 16th of July 2012.

"Run hard to obtain the prize"

The Olympics are not very far away now, about three weeks, and there is a special air of excitement in Great Britain and especially where the Games are mostly to be held in London. Plans have been in place for years and it has taken years to build the varied venues and have everything in place before the Games start.

Competitors have been practising hard for years with this one event especially on their minds. One well known champion said “To be a world champion is great but the Olympics are very special.”

Other special meetings pale into insignificance, the Olympic Crown tops the lot as far as achievement is concerned. To be on that rostrum with the gold medal around the neck is the highest pinnacle of success for the athlete , swimmer cyclist, boxer and competitors in all other events, so many of them and each one will draw thousands of spectators to witness this amazing spectacle.

Paul, in the Bible, writes about such games in Greece where they started centuries ago and he has quite a knowledge of what goes on in the training schedules of the athlete and the diets each one needs and the strictness in keeping on practising even when the weather is icy, wet, hot, cold and windy. “All run in a race, but only one wins so run that you may obtain” 1 Corinthians 9:24ff;.

He goes on to say they all go into strict training. (Probably no cream cakes or doughnuts!) if they were in being at the time. But he concludes by saying “but what do they obtain?... a perishable wreath”. But believers in Christ are running for a prize which is not transient not perishable but eternal. (I Corinthians 9:24;)

So we as believers are all in a race but praise God Paul tells us in his letter to the Colossians 1 that Jesus has already gone over the finishing line and won the prize for us. He has qualified for us Hallelujah!!.

In his letter to the Galatians he warns us about those who would try to cut in on us and try to divert us on our christian path

He encourages us on the other hand speaking of the crowds of spectators who are watching us and urging us on in our christian life.(Hebrews)

Whether you are an athlete or armchair spectator at this years Olympics in the Christian race we are all competitors and it is not a sprint it is more like a marathon with all kinds of obstacles and we are daily in need of resources flowing to us from Heaven to strengthen and equip us for the conflict.

Satan is on the prowl but as John Bunyon put it so beautifully in Pilgrims Progress if we keep to the centre pathway where God is directing us we will not be in the path of lions or other beasts Satan may have lined up against us. We are in a spiritual battle but If God be for us who can be against us. If God is our strength and shield we will arrive safely in Heaven. Its a dangerous journey at times but we were not promised an easy passage only a safe landing as Bishop J C Ryle told us in one of his helpful books.

The training manuals of the athletes are very helpful to help competitors to be successful if they keep to the right schedules and do not miss a days training. We Christians need to daily look at our training Manuel The Bible and study to not only show ourselves approved by God but for daily necessary food and direction . There is a race to be run and dangers to face on the way (the hymn writer reminds us)

Be steadfast Paul reminds us elsewhere and treat your life seriously and wonderful blessings ensure us of a marvellous welcome home when we arrive at the end of our journey. “Well done thou good and faithful servant” That is what we are looking forward to hearing as we pass over the finishing line.

As Paul said I have finished the race that is all that matters. Dont drop out ,dont lag behind , Keep in step with the Spirit , keep looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, that is the answer.

Joys Prayer

Dear Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father,

We realise that we are on a journey towards eternity and so very thankful you have redirected us from the wide road that leads to destruction onto the narrow road that leads to eternal life and Heaven.

We have heard today it is like a race as Paul describes in the Bible that all Christians are competing in but we are so thankful that the end is assured that we will reach the finishing line as we go not alone. Jesus by The Spirit of God is with us and helping us keep in step with Him. Forgive us when we have turned aside for one reason or another when temptations have gripped us. Help us daily to seek you to fill us anew with The Holy Spirit so we can be more than conquerors and win many battles against the evil one. Lord you give us all the resources necessary to compete and complete the journey. Thank you Lord for your deep love for us and your heavenly armour available to us as pray daily for it. Without You Lord we would fail but thank you for your amazing love for us and your strength which is almighty to save, keep and bring us safe to heaven.

Amen

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23rd July 2012

Who is in first place?

Last weekend I had a treat I wasn't expecting. My wife Joy took me out to celebrate 9 months of marriage. After a meal out she started to give small clues as to where I was being taken in her car. It was all mystery until we arrived at a cinema in Southampton and my suspicions were confirmed when we went into a Cinema studio to see Chariots of Fire .I first saw this film in 1984 and was thrilled to see it again because in my youth running was at the centre of my life until convicted that I was controlled by my sport which was allowed to take first place in my life and God came a low down second. So I was interested to see how Eric Liddell a Christian whose amazing athletic career had taken him to the top flight among athletes in Great Britain was able to be a christian and keep running in its rightful place.. I was interested to know how he was able to remain strong in his convictions as a Christian and yet run for his country at a very high level in the 1924 Olympics on a Sunday.

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Eric Liddell was shocked to learn that the heats for his event the 100 metres were to be run on a Sunday and straight away he knew both his conscience and God's Word would not allow him to break the Sabbath. He began to train for another even although chosen for the 100 metres thus upsetting the United Kingdom Olympic Committee which including the Prince of Wales heir to the throne.. When interviewed and asked for a reason Eric was very firm in his convictions nothing would drag him away from his Sabbath worship to participate in sport on that same day.

The actor portraying this role played his role well and it certainly came across to the people in the cinema that here was a man who was a wonderful example of what we all should do when it comes to standing up for our faith. We may not be selected to compete for GB at the Olympic Games but what if our faith was challenged perhaps at work or school, college or play or in retirement. Would we put Jesus first at all times?

Eric was handed a note from the American team just before his new event the 400 metres , It was a text to be found in 1 Samuel. “He who honours me I will honour.” When it came to the race Eric won handsomely and broke the world record. God had surely honoured his decision to put God first.

Only a year later Eric was on a ship to China to once again put God first as he went with his wife to serve God there. His athletic career was firmly in second place to his first desire to put God first at all times. Recently I saw a dvd and his three daughters, one not even born when Eric sent them off to relatives ion Canada when the Japanese invaded China and Eric was interned with many others. On the DVD, she was so proud of her dad. Remember he never saw her and she never saw him. He died of a tumour in an internment camp in China. The Chinese people still remember him today for his love and deep concern for the Chinese people.

This man loved God with all his heart and was strong in his faith and as a result many lives in china were changed through his ministry. He never wavered. I know he was not turning down wealth as athletes did not get the money they receive today for winning or even competing in International events but fame and fortune would not have distracted this true man of faith. My life and your life need to speak for Jesus Christ and we need to stand up for Jesus and shine like powerful beacons in this world of sinful darkness.

We are in enemy territory every day and are here to win others to Jesus Christ, If we hold firm to our convictions God will use us as we give ourselves 100 per cent for Jesus as Eric did. I wept during that film. I will not forget the film or the text . 'He that honour Me I will honour Him. “You shall have no other gods before Me” says the Lord in Exodus 19 and 20 Music art or sport can so rob us of eternal life and God His glory. Fight the fight of faith my friends.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father,

As the Olympics draw near please bless all the athletes and spectators and keep them safe from danger. We pray you will watch over spectators travelling from abroad and being in a strange country may they make friends easily. We pray for the Christian witness at the games and all who are participating in making Jesus Christ known at the various venues around London and beyond.

May we be careful to place God first in our lives and take Eric Liddell as a fine example for us to emulate.

In Jesus Name

Amen

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Think Spot 30th July 2012

Torchbearers for Jesus

Recently, with a number of others I had the opportunity recently to hold the Olympic torch for a short while which received the flame from the previous runner. She was one of 8000 who carried the flame from Greece to London. That was a privilege I was not expecting. Can you imagine there were 8ooo circular holes in the frame of that torch representing all who had carried the flame. After its use each torch bearer was permitted to purchase the torch they carried as a memento of this great event of the Olympics 2012 London.

Each torch has a connecting point where a key is inserted to turn the gas on to receive the flame. That flame never goes out the entire journey of many thousands of miles.

You and I, if we are Christians are torchbearers for Jesus Christ. We are not the Light of the world as John writes in the first chapter of his gospel but we are but light bearers. Each of us is ignited by Jesus Christ in the first place when we became Christians. Having been lit we are now lights to the world of The Light Jesus Christ, What a responsibility! What a privilege!

When the Olympic torch finally entered the stadium in London a triumphant shout went up from the extremely large crowd of probably nearer 100 000 people which shattered the air. The moment had arrived for the main cauldron to be ignited to set that large flame going for about 3 weeks. When the Games are over that flame is put out.

Just think, when we arrive at heavens door we still carry the light of Christ with us to be joined up with a crowd no one can number and that flame will never go out as we are promised eternal life with The Light of the World Jesus Christ at the very centre of our eternal worship and adoration.

Meanwhile what a thrill it is here on earth where we are seeking to ignite others to become God's torch bearers. As we make contact with people the key we turn is called faith and where the power is released by God a person comes alive and is lit up, repents and believes. Another torch bearer is born and in turn carries The Light of the world to others.

The important part is the flame. We proclaim Him Jesus Christ because we love Him and adore Him and long for everyone to know Him and join the great crowd spoken of in the book of Revelation such a number that is not countable by any human being.

Where God has placed you, look to God in prayer to guide you to those whose names are already written in the Lambs book of life. This world will continue until that final day comes when that number is completed. We cannot hasten that day as it is already recorded in heaven a day already known to God. We are assured that special day will come when Jesus shall come and those in heaven and those on earth who know Jesus are joined as one. What a brilliant light that will be and such a wonderful privilege to be joined to.

May The Spirit of God give us such wonderful opportunities meanwhile to be engaged in this amazing valuable work which will change our world as multitudes upon multitudes glorify God. As the famous creed puts it “Mans chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him for ever.”

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father,

as we come to you today may we realise the wonder of our salvation and the privilege of being brought to the Light of the world Jesus Christ and of now being made light bearers to the world around us.

Forgive us for our lack of desire to share our faith with others. Strengthen us in our resolve now to make up for that lost time and to become like the early church gossipers of the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. If we are shy and regularly reserved persons we need added grace and if we are too loud help us to become balanced in the manner in which we share the most precious gift we have to give to others.

Make us perceptive and alert to these matters where You would have us to serve and to lovingly speak for You Lord.

You gave your life for us may we put the past behind us giving our lives to you afresh and forgetting mistakes made in the past shine brightly for You and encourage as many as we can to join and follow Jesus Christ our Saviour The Light of the world.

In His precious name we pray, Amen

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Think Spot 13th August 2012

Why few or no conversions?

I have come to the conclusion that preachers may be preaching the truth in our Bible but is it changing peoples lives? Should that not be the object of every address delivered from our pulpits.? Is the preacher really seeking God to know what to preach about?. After all he knows who will be present in the services and what they need to hear, doesn't he? If nothing happens something must be wrong as Romans 1:16; clearly says “The gospel is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes.” recently I have heard people go out from services saying “That was boring” “The speakers were unreal”

Yes I know people can make excuses because they do not want to be touched by God but is it all their fault? Why isn't the truth empowered by The Holy Spirit really reaching its chosen mark? Hebrews 4:12; reads "The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God" quickening cutting etc.

Is too much of the service being given over to other items not necessarily to be overlooked but are they introduced at such a time in the service that distracts from the real object of the preaching service to either convert or build up?. A service so filled that there is either little time left for the sermon or people are worn out in listening to the first part of service.

Read once again Peter's sermon on day of Pentecost , how convicting was that? They were cut to the heart. Did they feel something during that sermon? Could they go home without a response? They felt the fear of God and knew they were guilty-They acknowledged their part in the death of Jesus Christ. Some say you must not preach too personal to any one. How foolish that is. The Word should work reaching the individual's ears of his or her heart saying “John, Julie Janet, this is for you to hear”

The listeners to Peter came to a point during God's preached word when they wanted desperately for their lives to be changed. So much so they would be waiting around afterwards for a long while no doubt to be baptized. Remember, There were 3000 waiting.!! Also they would all have been counselled first wouldn't they?

Is it possible there are there too many preachers entering our pulpits who are untrained, not called by God and not meant to preach. They haven't the gift of preaching. Is it fair to our congregations to have such men ministering ?? Or even men practising for the benefit of judges to ascertain their preaching ability during Sunday services? Surely there are other occasions suited for that purpose. When I take unconverted people to a gospel service I want them to hear the gospel. Nothing less.

Consider this question. What kind of effect does the speaker have on his hearers? When Robert Murray Cheyenne appeared in the pulpit, before he opened his mouth the congregation were stilled and even silently tearful. Why? Here was a man who brought with him into the pulpit a sense of God's presence and the people knew he most certainly would deliver a message heaven sent and it was effective. The awesome sense of God's presence was there. This man only lived into his early thirties but revival broke out in his church even when he was away from it. God honoured this man's faithful ministry There was a seriousness about the church meetings and no flippancy which can be sadly experienced in churches today as if you must have humour to keep the people coming. Who is the preacher trying to please? God or man?

My concluding thoughts are concerning the failings in the preacher and the failure in the presentation of God's Truth, the message of the preacher. The preacher has to be a God centred man, a man of integrity, knowledge and understanding of the Scriptures. A man whose life to live is the life of Christ and who truly believes that God's Word is God's powerful Word and he has no other message to preach. He is to preach it in a lively not boring manner because he knows it is truth and He is a man who knows The Spirit's work in his own life and knows something of the Spirit helping him in his preparation and delivery of God's message. He has a dynamite stick in his hand and he expects it to explode by the power of The Holy Spirit. To penetrate men and women's hearts. A man who speaks with authority and unafraid of upsetting the congregation and certainly not there to entertain them with humour. He is a dying man speaking to dying men and women. The time given to him must be adequate and not restricted by what follows the service. Football fans do not want the game to end. The theatre show to finish, do they? Read Acts 2:42ff. Day after day the news converts couldn't get enough of God's Word.

But what do I hear christians say today? You have to break up the sermon into several parts with some singing between people cannot concentrate for more that ten minutes. That is untrue when a person is truly converted. They are hungry and thirsty for more. “Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness for they will be filled.” Read your Bible carefully and you will see how true this is. Maybe we have too may intellectual believers who give assent to the gospel but their lives are not supernaturally changed. If not there is something wrong. Examine yourself my friends.

The preacher must also never assume that all his hearers are believers. However his hearers may be knowledgeable in the scriptures. However influential they are in the church in helping to pay the ministers wages. They could even be marvellous in prayer meetings, very eloquent. The preacher has no favourites among the church and is not going to preach to please them. He is to preach as if all are sinners. Think about it, they truly are, saved or unsaved sinners.

True Believers will not be offended by this but pleased to hear once again the gospel which secured them in Christ. The message must centre on Jesus Christ especially in the gospel service which should be regular each week. His life, death, resurrection, ascension and return in glory. Eternity and eternal punishment must be preached to draw people to Jesus Christ. If not saved we are lost there is no in-between.

Please pray and consider what I say. I am sharing my deep concern for you to consider out of forty years a preacher, pastor, evangelist and a believer only by God's grace and in my happiest and holiest moments I cry for and long to see revival in the Church and much much more glory go to God and for His Church to be more more effective.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father we acknowledge our need to come to the church meetings in the right spirit and pray very much for our church leaders that they may bring with them a greater sense of our Lord's presence and may our meetings be privileged with that beautiful and awesome sense of Your presence which we know is possible when "They preach The Word."

When Solomon's Temple was built there was a tremendous sense of your presence there. It would have been awesome!! All was in keeping with your will and you blessed your people incredibly.. The priests could not stand to minister such was the power of your presence felt. Lord do it again please for your praise and glory. Please send revival into your church.

Amen

(The views expressed here are not necessariliy the views held by Partakers & Dave G Roberts)

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Think Spot 20th August 2012

The Battle is the Lord's!

Recently I have been in contact with several Christians who are struggling in their witnessing as the devil attacks them bringing fear doubts and seeming defeat when they close in on his territory. It reminded me when preaching several years ago, when I had an unbelievable attack from the enemy which I have never forgotten.

I had been preaching one morning in my church, where I was pastor. I was speaking about Moses leading Israel across the River Jordan and about to take Jericho and I had made the point that the devil doesn't give up even one inch of ground easily. Jericho would not be taken by Israel apart from God intervening and working with them.

During the evening service as I began my address I felt very uneasy. I was made to think the Lord was not with me in the pulpit. He had deserted me. What made me think like this you ask ? Well for starters, our organist appeared to be asleep (actually he was meditating) and people looked so bored to tears. I stopped in mid flow in my preaching on the conversion of Rahab the harlot and said “There is no point in proceeding with this service God cannot be with us I do not sense His presence.” I closed the service ten minutes before the average normal time. This was one occasion when the last thing I wanted to do now, following the service , was to go and shake hands with people at the door. Nevertheless I made the effort.

One dear old godly lady came to the church door and whispered in my ear, “Jim, God was with us this evening. Think back to what you preached about this morning.. You said The devil doesn't give up one inch of his territory easily, that is what he was attempting to do this evening.” I was so thankful for this wise woman's words of encouragement and I have never repeated that response when not feeling God's presence again. The devil is powerful, thankfully not all powerful and is a real threat to us. However we need to be clothed in the armour God has given to us which we read about in Ephesians 6:10-18; “Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might that we might stand in the evil day”We need to get into the habit of clothing ourselves spiritually through prayer as we put on our ordinary clothing each day. Remember Put on the whole armour of God.”

Sanctified common sense tells us to be prepared for each day especially if we intend to witness bravely for Christ which is our daily mission.

We have a glorious gospel to share and it is powerful. Romans 1:16; makes that very clear! God also promises that His word will not return to Him void.” So preach it brother and sister!!” Remember God is always working through His marvellous message of amazing grace. The truth will set people free. “Be always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Cor 16).

We are on the winning side never forget it my dear friends. The battle was won at Calvary and we walk in the knowledge of that great truth. Read the last few verses in Isaiah 53 and see the prophesied promised result from Christ's sacrifice and righteous life. The Holy Spirit working in and through us is no match for the devil. The Holy Spirit wins every time. May I encourage you to read Pilgrims Progress by John Bunyon to see how Christian struggled with the evil one and how he overcome him. See also in Matthew 4 how Jesus defeated the devil in the wilderness through His Word which truly is more powerful than any two edged sword. Have a good day of victory.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father,

how we need to be so aware of the strength of the enemy ,our own weakness and the all surpassing power of God which can defeat the devil. Lord strengthen us afresh each day and give us such a confidence in yourself that we be not frightened by the enemy and believe we shall succeed through You. In the past we have succeeded and we remember your presence with us then, how precious You were to us and how immediately you were with us wherever we went.

You never left us you were, for us, a very present help in time of trouble. Thank you Lord we love you; The clouds may have been low, heavy and exceedingly dark but by faith we could see You in full control and sovereign over all. Thank you Lord.

In Jesus Name

Amen

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  • Anonymous

    Vital contribution in these dark days in which we live. Couldn’t agree with you more.

    Aug 24, 2012 at 2:43 pm

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Think Spot 27th August 2012

How is your reading going?

When I was first converted over 45 years ago I was privileged to be converted in a church which had regular expository preaching and keen prayer meetings as well as a strong support for several missionaries abroad and in England. Week following week we had a feast of good things as we were taught on Sunday evenings the depth of the meaning of each of the Ten Commandments from Exodus 20. On each of those same Sundays in the mornings we went through a section of Paul's letter to the Colossians a few verses at a times. I had no idea how important this type of teaching was for me. I didn’t realise at the time how privileged I was.

Little did I know also that God had carefully arranged my spiritual education to prepare me for future ministry. He called me first to Missionary work in London. “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” ( Luke 5:1ff)

I was then encouraged to wait upon the Lord for a clear word from Him to lead me into such a valuable, important and necessary work in an extremely hard place, a city with a multitude of different nationalities and religions, where only a sovereign God could break through . This teaching concerning God's almighty power was so vital for me to grasp before I began. “Go now therefore and I shall be with your mouth and teach you what to say” Exodus 4:12.

Before church membership it had been a regular feature I believe, to be taught three important teaching sessions on three major doctrines, Justification, Sanctification and Glorification. Yes we were certainly grounded in the faith and discipled which was so important when about to be sent into such a challenging work for God. This work in London witnessed God moving in and changing peoples lives of all ages through His powerful Word. This was followed by various Bible teaching posts in evangelical churches throughout the country. Time and time again I praised God for such a great education at the beginning of my christian life. Such brilliant preachers and mature Christians ready and available and so willing to help a young believer.

Now retired and having a lot of time to write devotional booklets to help all kinds of Christian through my life experiences I can now advise from personal experience which good Christian books to read which have helped me. Two questions I would like to ask as I look at the church today. First I ask “Is discipleship such an important part of a regular church programme today?” I think of Jesus called his disciples for three years training before He sent them into the mission field.

The second question I ask is how much do Christians read today of Christian Doctrine and experience? I thought I would share my knowledge of good christian authors and books which have helped build me up in my faith and have been such a help to me in all kinds of different situations which needed clear understanding of how to deal with them.

Books on Prayer which have helped me are Hallesby on Prayer as well as David Pawson's teaching online on the subject of “The Lord's Prayer” from the Sermon on the Mount, so helpful to build you up in your faith in addition to your regular dipping into the Scriptures to feed your souls. Prayer is not easy and can he helped by lessons learned by these men of God.

The first books I was given to read as a new christian were JC Ryle's “Expository Thoughts on the Gospels.” These are still excellent to use in your daily devotions today so easy to read and understand and divided very helpfully into useful portions to use on a daily basis. I recommend them highly. USB Notes are also very helpful and “Our Daily Bread” from RBC Carnforth.

But in addition to this form of study may I suggest you read regularly biographies of some great men and women of God from the past. I was helped early on in my Christian life in reading Charles Haddon Spurgeon's Biography “The Early Years” and the second volume called “The Full Harvest” He was one of the greatest preachers this world has ever known. His writings are still popular today 150 years after his death.

Corrie Ten Boom books are much smaller but excellent reading. If you need further encouragement in prayer then read the narratives of George Mueller and Billy Bray the Cornishman's story “The Kings Son” which was also so helpful to me. Finally Pilgrims Progress by John Bumyon is a must for every Christian written now in modern English. And there are so many more.

Paul the apostle wrote “Study to yourself approved of God” In his epistles he makes it clear that we should give attention to reading and when in prison he asked his friends to bring him the parchments. There is a wealth of good christian literature, but we need to be guided into what is really useful for us. We can waste a lot of money without the right advice from more seasoned Christians who we know and trust. Ask for their help and take care and may God richly bless your reading and listening.

Joys Prayer Dear Lord and loving Heavenly Father,

You have taught us today how important it is to not stand still in our christian life. To make sure we grow in knowledge and in our understanding of the Holy Scriptures. Forgive us for laziness and being distracted by other things such as Television and other social pursuits which have been additional to what is really necessary in our lives.

We are thankful Lord for Christian programmes on TV and we know the need to keep ourselves fit and healthy with exercise but we also know how these things can slip in and replace our prayer life and our life of usefulness to You. Please forgive us and recharge us as we listen to Bible teaching or read Christian books which are helpful for us to maintain our souls and to enlarge our hearts and minds.

We are made aware through Scripture we are in a battle and need all the resources we can get to strengthen and equip us for each days battle and in our daily witness to your marvellous Truth. Our love for you Lord is always in response to Your love for us and we want to show Your love to all we come into contact with each morning whether at work, in retirement or in the social world.

Lord help us to be shining lights for You and may we never forget to give You all the glory and praise due to Your Holy Name. In Jesus Name

Amen

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Think Spot 3rd September 2012

Strengthen Your Church

When Paul was writing to the church at Rome he said “I long to see you that I may use my gifts to strengthen you”Partakers

God's spiritual gifts are given for the strengthening and building up of the faith of brothers and sisters in Christ's body the church. We can exercise our natural talents, playing a musical instrument, encouragement, financial wizardry, driving a car, cooking, and of course much more to strengthen the church.Partakers

But when God chooses and gives us spiritual gifts some spectacular like the gift of the word of knowledge, wisdom, faith, miracles of healings etc as with our natural gifts they too are for the strengthening of the church.Partakers

So what are you doing in your church? Are you a private Christian who only looks to themselves and does not look upon the needs of others? Or from the church leadership level are you looking out on the membership and noticing and recognising the gifts being used already for the building up of the church? The gifted should be recognized in the fellowship!Partakers

Of course we know the trouble caused in Corinth over spiritual gifts and cliques appearing and there seems also a lack of caring for the church in allowing all manner of sin openly to persist rather than deal with it. Was there also rivalry there? I think we see that it is clearly seen there.”I am of Appollos I am of Cephas, I am of Paul” you would hear people say.Partakers

So are you a New Testament Church? How far removed are you from that status? It may be a mistake of a church to hold a voting system whereby favourites are voted into Office who are not necessarily gifted or called by God for those positions. They may appear to be but how well do you know your fellow church members.? May be there is the need to request the gift of discernment to recognise gifted persons.Partakers

Now we know that no Christian is perfect otherwise there would be no need of the great quantity of teaching on how to live out the Christian life in the epistles of Paul, Peter and John. Why then do we sometimes fail?Partakers

The Holy Spirit is sometimes forgotten or neglected in the Believers life. Yet He is ever present within every believer and always speaking into our hearts to show us the right path to take and what ministry he wants us to perform in the body of Christ. We `are warned not to “grieve the Holy Spirit” and to “Keep in step with the Spirit”Partakers

Whether we are multi gifted or have difficulty in discovering what our one gift is we all have a part to play and when we discover that role life takes on a far greater meaning and we will be fulfilled in knowing and doing God's will.Partakers

All the resources your church needs is available in and through God. “Ask, seek, knock and the door will be opened to you” for since Jesus went back to heaven God has poured out his blessings and gifts to His church to receive and implement both in their individual and corporate church life.Partakers

So what do we need to become the kind of person who wakes up in the morning thanking God for our great salvation and then says “Lord how I want to strengthen peoples faith today. Grant that at the end of this day somebody will be more confident of your promises and much cheered up because I crossed their path.Partakers

If you do not wake up like this then as you seek to help someone in some way it will not be long before The Spirit will reveal ways in which you can help others as you yield to Him. Have a nice day and step out in faith.

Partakers

Joys Prayer

Partakers

Gracious Lord, Thank you for setting the perfect example to me of loving your people. It is my desire today to think more about others than myself. I need to feel the links I have with other believers because I am a Christian and to feel compassion for the injured and bereaved in my fellowship and to take an interest in their lives as well as my own. Please give me perception where I have been blinded to others needs and opportunities that were there but I failed to see them.Partakers

'Lord make me useful to thee send thou thy Spirit to me Thy perfect will, in me fulfil , Lord make me useful to thee.'

In Jesus Name Amen

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Think Spot 10th September 2012

God came down

Have you ever known certain meetings that stand out in your memory? Occasions when you went to your usual church meeting and suddenly during the meeting it was transformed and you couldn’t take your eyes off the preacher and your ears were so tuned in to God and the message you didn’t want it to end. Time stood still and you left that service still with the message ringing in your ears and you took home with you a sense of the presence of the Lord with you that lasted for days and maybe weeks even months afterwards. It was awesome.

~

The question is why was that service so different ? Why was it you felt God's presence in such a way seldom before experienced. Was it something about the preacher that day? Was it that you had been seeking to live much closer to the Lord the days preceding and God was rewarding you? Or did you pray for it to happen? Were you expecting it to happen?

~

Following the meeting did you find it easy to explain to others what you experienced to people absent from the meeting.? More interestingly did other people in the meeting sense that same sense of God's beautiful awesome presence as you did or was it only you? How did you know it was God? One of the evidences of God drawing near like that is that people recognised God's presence very close to them and became burdened for their sinful condition and cried to God in repentance. They desired a complete change of life. They saw their need of Jesus Christ.

~

When I read through the book of Acts I find occasion similar where God came down and those present sensed the power of God's presence there. How did Paul and Silas feel when in the middle of praising God in the prison cell the doors all opened and the ground trembled and the sound of of thunder filled the place?

~

Way back in the Old Testament days after the temple was built how did the people of Israel feel when God came down as they worshipped and smoke filled the air at the opening of the temple and the ministers could not stand to minister because of the overwhelming sense of God's presence.

~

During revivals in Scotland, Wales, South America, England, we read of similar incredible things occurring. The sense of God's presence was not only inside buildings of worship but God's presence could be felt on the outside too. People began to seek God as they became aware of God's closeness to them and as they did so it produced tears of repentance and peoples lives were changed significantly as God drew near. Children formed themselves into groups and began to seek God in prayer. It was spontaneous and awesome. People remained behind in church after services finished to hear more not wanting to go home.

~

Recently and sadly I heard the very opposite. “Hope the preacher doesn’t go on more than ten minutes today. The church should know that no one has the capacity these days to listen to someone for more than ten minutes. Of course if someone is speaking in a boring fashion I would agree. But if a person is anointed and chosen by God to preach and filled with and led by the Spirit its a different story isn’t it?

On one occasion I remember well when God drew near to our Mission hall in a remarkable way and God came down and His presence was felt around and about the vicinity of our hall for a month or so and it was amazing what transpired during that time. As a result of this event I was requested by a number of the children who attended the Mission if they could come in to my home before school (which happened to be nearby) each morning and have Bible teaching for 30 minutes or so.

~

I can still see them in my mind sitting attentively and quietly drinking in every word, the story of Joseph from Genesis 37 as I applied its teaching to their young lives. They were so receptive. They were concentrating not wanting to miss a word. Could we learn a thing or two from those children maybe? May the prayer be from our hearts, “ Lord revive your work in the midst of the years please.”

~ Joy’s Prayer ~

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father, We bow humbly before You recognising our need for a real sense of your presence with us at all times. We see we can do nothing without You moving in upon our lives and giving direction and strength for our daily lives.

~

Revive our spirits if low and cleanse us from all hindrances to honest, true worship and loyal obedience to your commands which are good and so healthy for us to follow. We know your will is always best to follow. Not out of compulsion, but out of love for you, we ask these things. In Jesus Name!

Amen

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Think Spot 17th September 2012

Who is the attraction in your church

Alice was a sweet little girl and always had a ready answer or queston when we came together for Bible study. One day I was talking of the church services and the need to have more people join us. How shall we get them there I asked the group. I went on to make suggestions. “Shall we have big sessions? Alice looked at me in amazement. “I went on we need entertainment in the house of God to get them there don’t we? Alice looked angry now. “No way,” she said “there should only be one attraction in the House of God” I enquired what that should be” “You have got it wrong Mr Allis not what but Who that should be” I enquired again “And Who is that?” She couldn't now contain herself and “the words poured out with absolute confidence and desire, “Why, God Himself of course!”

By now you would realise I hope that my whole purpose in speaking to her in this way was in fact to draw out that answer from one of my group but it was the way she said it that really pleased me and prepared me for this present day in which we live where all manner of things go on in church buildings in the name of Christianity which are not God honouring and even His very name is sometimes limited in the presentation of what is supposed to be the gospel. Do you think I am exaggerating. I think not. Where is the conscience of God's people today? Where is the God awareness that is vital in church meetings? What are the the thoughts of the worshipper as they make their way to their church building? Pleasing man or pleasing God?

We live in a day described in Paul’s letters to Timothy as to what will be going on in later days when God's become people tired of listening to His precious authoritative word and simply wanting to listen to what their itching ears wanted to hear rather than what God wanted them to hear. What kind of image do people have in their minds when they come to church? Whatever is served up we will accept? Or We come to glorify God and if that is interfered with we shall be disturbed. Perhaps there is a growing complacency, The only thing concerning them is increasing the numbers attending churches? How we need to see that the content of the service and the desire to meet with God is of paramount importance isn’t it. I leave you with those searching questions. Take care and enjoy your new week.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father we want your name to be honoured in our church. We want the name of Jesus Christ to be lifted high and haven’t you said Lord “If I be lifted up I shall draw all men to myself” Lord may we see afresh today that we need to do things your way and not invent ways and means of getting people to church. You will honour your truth in your Word forgive us for doing things our way and put us right in our thinking. You are holy thrice holy as well as being our Friend. for Jesus Sake. Amen.

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Think Spot 24th September 2012

They looked unto Him (The Lord) and they were radiant!” Psalm 34:5

A few years ago I was attending a leaders conference in London and the fellowship was fantastic and so enjoyable. So much so that after the conference was over , some of us returning to the main station near the conference centre said to each other as we parted “Lets covenant to keep in touch with each other” You see we had experienced 'koinonia' fellowship which is much deeper and richer than having a simple chat and a cup of coffee after church. It is a far stronger bond between the two who are in conversation. In just four days coming from many different parts of England we had found an exciting common link between us that we didn’t want to let go . And we kept our word over several years.

On returning to my home that very same day following the Conference, we had expected visitors who had arrived earlier in the day. When I entered the room they were sitting chatting to each other but in an instant when they caught sight of me they said “Where have you been? Your face is radiant.!!” I was slightly embarrassed but said quickly and half jokingly “I have been with the angels.” That wasn’t too far from the truth if you think about it. I had been locked in heavenly company and conversation for four days and enjoyed together long hours of chatting about the Saviour we love and adore. “They looked unto Him and were radiant.” Time passes swiftly when you are enjoying yourself with friends and God that type of koinonia fellowship.

Very recently Joy my wife and I went into our local coffee shop to our daily spot where we share Jesus when one lady whom we had spoken with many times suddenly looked at me and said You are beaming again,I want what you have got.!!” She saw something about me that was different to anything she had experienced in her own life before and she wanted it.

Friends, people outside the church say to us “Show us God and we will believe in Him” Of course God is not going to come down and show Himself in a physical form just to prove His existence is He?. Actually He did once when Jesus Christ His Son lived here for 33 years. He has many ways of manifesting Himself but especially through us. What do I mean? Listen to the apostle Paul who said “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.” Also he encouraged us with these words, He said “Put on the Lord Jesus Christ” In the Sermon on the Mount (which incidentally is for believers) Jesus said “Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven.

You and I as born again Christians have Someone to show to the world haven’t we ? How? He is living in us, right?.So we need to become more transparent and Jesus become more apparent in our daily lives. Then they will see God in and through us!! and hopefully say what the lady said in the coffee shop “I want what you've got” Go on, be bold, be strong, show Jesus to whoever you meet today and may they give you the same response. Smile, be generous, listen carefully to them and don’t do all the talking. , be practical and help in whatever way you can, go the extra mile and pray with them there and then if possible, as they may share their worries with you, give encouragement and be like Jesus to them. Lets all Shine for Jesus and help change the world. “Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me all his compassion and purity.” Take care , God bless you and have a wonderful day.

Joys Prayer

Yes Lord that's our prayer today. Lord shine through me. Make me a radiant Christian for you. I have so much to tell them of the great things you have done for me. I have peace, joy and such love I want to give all three to all I meet today. Lord make them receptive to You in me. May I be able to say today without fear “I am not ashamed to own my Lord or to defend His cause” Lord may your radiant beauty be upon me for your very names sake. Amen.

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Think Spot 1st October 2012

Where is your faith??

Going down memory lane recently I remembered a man of 24 years of age who attended our mission hall in South East London and for some while did not seem to show particular interest in the preached message until one day he shook me with his amount of faith which on that occasion exceeded my own by far.

We always went down to the famous Cutty Sark in Greenwich after the evening service close to the River Thames to hold a short open air service on a stretch of grass nearby.. We had the most improvised equipment imaginable to impart the message and a few gospel songs which were played on a record turntable in what looked to the unknowing onlooker to be an old pram on wheels. It was ancient I can tell you. However ancient I had inherited it and intended to put it to good use. It included a microphone attached which was powerful enough for proclaiming the gospel and all of this equopment run on an old car battery. Yes this was back in approximately 1970 I think. Now to the true story.

One particular Sunday night as we began the evening service I could not believe for one moment we would be having the open air service later. It was raining cats and dogs as Britishers would say . It was incessant and looked in for the night. So I put away at the back of my mind any likelihood of us making the journey down to the river front that night.

However, Fred had other ideas. As soon as the service finished he came up to me and said “Well are you ready?” Ready for what? ” I enquired. “Down to the Cutty Sark” he replied. “But its pouring with rain and so no one will be out and about and it will be a waste of time to go?” I replied. He came right up close and said with complete confidence “Where is your faith Mr Allis?”

I was quite taken back but muttered “Oh come on then lets go” Well the faith was completely with Fred that night and so we went and I expected a completely deserted river front with absolutely no one in sight and I was right.

As I commenced the service with a Bev Shea song I looked around and saw a few windows open in high flats at the waters edge but no sign of life. So with ' very little faith' I I began my gospel message aiming it towards the few distant windows high up where I noticed lights on. As I continued in what was probably about a ten minute address proclaiming Jesus Christ to my surprise a small boy came along the water front kicking a football and behind him, I supposed ,was his mother. She sat on the one wet seat about 20 metres away and rested while her boy played. Remember the rain was still pouring down.

As I concluded she got up and came deliberately towards me and said “I came out tonight as my boy was getting so fidgety at home and was pleading to come out so I agreed unwillingly. I am so pleased I did ,now, because God spoke to me as you spoke and I want to return to Him. I have been backsliding for a long while but your message from God made the difference.”

Thank you for making the effort on a night like this. Fred was listening quietly near by and as she and her son went on their way he said with a smile on his face “Told you so !, aren’t you glad you came? I certainly was!

Joys Prayer

Gracious loving Lord, how wonderful are the surprises you give us and they can make us feel so unworthy as we see even our little faith go down to zero when we look at the circumstances and take out eyes off You.. When David went against Goliath he was thought mad to do so by King Saul. However with confidence that His God was much, much bigger than Goliath he even ran towards Goliath and we know that` you Lord won a great victory through your servant David. He fully trusted you to give him victory. He knew it before the stone left the sling. Help us Lord like David not to be overcome with doubt and fear as we see the difficult circumstances. Help us to keep our eyes on You Lord. 'Faith doesn’t look at circumstances but straight at God.' Thank you Lord for your promised faithfulness each day and night. In Jesus Name, Amen

Joys Prayer

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Think Spot 8th October 2012

When God shuts the door - what then?

The apostle Paul, Silas and Timothy were travelling through Asia on their second missionary journey they tried to go into Bythinia to the North but were hindered by The Holy Spirit, (we are not told how) so they tried to go in another direction but again it was negative but The Holy Spirit was gradually pushing them towards Troas a sea port. Why? Because there they would find a positive response to their daily enquiry, “where next do you want us to serve you Lord?”

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During the night a vision was given and Paul both saw and heard a person from Macedonia in Greece beckoning them not once but continually saying “Come over into Macedonia and help us” (Acts 16:9: )Doors had closed at first and then opened through a Divine interruption of sleep. And now having been so assured Paul, Silas, Timothy and Luke joining them (16:10) they set a “straight course by ship” (16:11:) (straight suggests the weather conditions were made perfect by the Lord who provided directional winds for their sails) and soon they were on the shore at Neapolis and from there they travelled into Philippi. After several days in Philipp-i where they had time to pray for fresh openings and opportunities they were then led by The Holy Spirit to three people from completely different ethnic backgrounds. One was a Greek, another was an Asian and the third a Roman. They and their households on hearing the gospel repented, believed and trusted in Jesus Christ for salvation. The first church was established in Europe because God had a man who was ready both to be used and guided to where God wanted Paul to serve Him.

Now then, each morning Joy and I go into a local heritage centre having prayed for similar opportunities to talk to people about Jesus Christ. We seem almost to be given an adventure a day as we fully trust The Holy Spirit to guide us to whom God wants to address and He gives us words also to speak as each occasion presents itself more often or not unexpectedly. But we are there ready for Him to use us and our different gifts and He doesn’t disappoint us.

Maybe God is wanting to do that with you. Are you willing? Are you reading His Word for daily guidance and cleansing? Are you giving Him listening time in order to hear His voice clearly directing you. Look up Proverbs 3:5-6 two of my favourite verses. Memorise them, hide them in your heart and they will then be ready to put into practice and your daily experience and ultimately the results will be for His glory for which we live don’t we?. Bye for now have a day to remember and at the end of it don’t forget to give thanks to God.

Joys Prayer

Gracious Loving Heavenly Father, we thank you that You want to have such a close intimate relationship with us. You want to walk and talk with us as we live out each day. We have duties to perform, work and pleasures to enjoy. We can so easily get so wrapped up with our selves that we forget to ask for your will for our lives. We pray “Your will be done” but do we mean it? May we give each day to you recognising your will is always best. In Jesus name, Amen

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Think Spot 15th October 2012

"You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart" Jeremiah 29:13

Recently in our local church we discussed the subject of Commitment. It was interesting to note as people spoke what their idea of commitment was and the various hindrances to such an ideal relationship with God.

Even more recently I was listening to a series on the Law of God and its place in our lives. I was pleasantly surprised to hear a seasoned pastor give his thoughts on what the law should mean to the christian today under grace. He said “we should not shrink away from the law saying Its too frightening, too high for me to attain but rather treat it like a friend.. “Really” you may say “I thought I was now under grace and do not have to look at the law anymore to attempt to be saved in the keeping of the law.”

True, but wait a minute, “Hasn't it any other usage? Was it only given to shut our mouths from saying I can live perfectly (Romans 3) and keep the law to satisfy God and enter heaven that way” The Bible says “The Law is good” and if its good then we should be trying to live by the law for the glory of God first and foremost, our own spiritual health and the spiritual health of others shouldn’t we? We have received the Holy Spirit to strengthen and encourage us to do so. But to what degree will He help us? What standard do you set yourself each day? Are you really wanting to be fully committed or keep saying to yourself “well we cannot do it so I will just struggle along and keep on saying sorry when I fail trusting the blood of Jesus Christ to cleanse me anew each time.”

Today we find, there are countless enticements that pull us away from a fully surrendered life. It is my firm belief, that, second only to salvation, the fully surrendered life is the most important aspect of the Christian life...to truly know God: “You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart” Note the word “all”.(Jeremiah 29:13). Sadly, very few of us ever experience this close relationship with God. This isn’t meant to discourage, but to convict. Conviction is a wonderful gift from God used to turn the heart back to Him.

The puritans used the phrase, “The same sun that melts the wax hardens the clay.” In the same way, we can allow the word of God to soften our hearts, or we can resist and become hard as stone. How many can truly say like Jeremiah, “His word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot” (20:9). How many have truly experienced Jesus’ words in John 7:38, “Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water’.” How many can truly relate to “times of refreshing” found in Acts 3:19, “Repent and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” How many really understand what John the Baptist was referring to when he cried, “After me will come One Who is more powerful than I, Whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize (overwhelm) you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” (Matthew 3:11).

Those who hold Christian beliefs often embrace one of two extremes when it comes to the power of the Holy Spirit. I read recently and its quite true “At one extreme are those who embrace pure emotionalism and hysteria—“if it’s odd it’s God” ... all weird behaviour is excused. The other extreme resembles a cemetery. There’s no living, vibrant spiritual life taking place. The church is dead, cold, and lifeless. Talk of the Spirit’s power is either dismissed or ridiculed. Both extremes are wrong and offer a false impression of genuine Christianity.” The writer is absolutely right isn't he? May we be encouraged from Scripture to seek the Lord with all our hearts and ask to be filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit's “living water” so that we spill over and cannot keep it to ourselves to both proclaim Christ and to live lives which shine for Jesus. Think about it.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father ,we bow humbly before You The Lord God Almighty thanking you so much for putting up with us when we say 'more of self and less of You' in our lives. May we desire with all our hearts to want to live totally committed lives before You and live consistently to your praise and glory. Help us not to be nervously looking at the Law of God and help us to see it as a friend. If we say we are on the victory side then help us to show to others outside the church as well as new believers that we are truly victorious and that God is powerfully working in our lives. Help others to view us as different in such a way as to see we have a confidence in God and for us Jesus is surely alive! Our prayer is for them to desire to know God too.

Amen

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Think Spot 22nd October 2012

Immediate Action required

David's words in Psalms 51 & 32( verse 4 especially) very clearly reveals to us the state or condition of his sinful heart as he goes into graphic details regarding his extreme pain and suffering he went through following his adultery with Bathsheba and making her pregnant.

In addition, his evil plan to get Uriah her husband to come home on leave and arrange for him to spend time with his wife to make it appear he had made his own wife pregnant. (2 Samuel 11) When he couldn’t get Uriah to lie with his wife he then added to his wickedness devising a plan whereby Uriah would be placed in the hottest place in the next battle so he could easily be shot at and killed by Israel's enemies. Then he would have it said Uriah was the father of the child to be born to Bathsheba his wife. That was David's plan but he had reckoned without God. One year later God sent Nathan the prophet to convict him of his grievous sin with Bathsheba as well as against her husband Uriah.

Nathan told David “God's eyes have seen your wickedness in murdering Uriah one of your soldiers making an evil plan to have him placed in the firing line of the enemy with the objective of him dying and then stealing Bathsheba to be your own wife and making her pregnant. You have forgotten God's omniscience in all you have said and done.” You and your family will suffer over this but you will be forgiven “

Nathan the prophet had come to David and David's sin's were laid out before him and he becomes convicted over his sin and is prepared to repent after a year of agony being under conviction. The psalms are graphic and explain the pain and suffering his soul goes through until he admitted his crimes before God and repentance takes place. The details in Psalm 32 and psalm 51 of David crying out to God and seeking forgiveness are frighteningly real and graphic and deserved hell. However he was promised forgiveness but there would be sad consequences which follow such sins.

He had suffered for 365 days and nights of being bereft of Gods blessed presence , unable to sleep, but did not seek forgiveness at any stage during that year. Instead he suffered a grieving and angry God as he said “I felt His heavy hand upon me............day and night I was wasting away until I confessed my sins and you forgave me and the joy of your salvation was restored to me!”

No doubt some nerves and remembrances in your own life have been touched of things we all have done and deeply regret and maybe also there have been consequences we have had to face up to. However we acknowledge it was our own fault and we cannot blame God. Others may have been involved with the error of our ways but it is so important for you to come clean and not try to hide your sins as David had attempted to do for such a long period.

If you have been hiding sin remember the eyes of God are everywhere and He sees all. You cannot hide anything from God as Adam and Eve attempted to do . Loose words spoken are careless and can cause so much harm even before any wrong action takes place. Guard your mouth, your eyes, your ears and your feet from going where you should not tread.

The same question may be applied to you today as Adam and Eve had to face. God after their disobedience. The Lord called to Adam “Where are you ?” Not, where are you hiding but Where are you spiritually with me? Why have you departed from our close fellowship we enjoyed when I came down and met with you each evening? “

Repentance is neither optional or easy but an essential action we must take. We live perilously until we do. The best and only way to a restored relationship is heart repentance with God. Immediate action must be taken!

You will like David suffer indescribably soul discomfort if you continue in your sin until you turn back to God. Remember, God's pressure on you is in love He wants you restored. He is only a prayer away but it must be real, genuine and from the heart and mind repentance with a view to stay away from that temptation once and for all. . You cannot fool God and I can assure you that you will not sense that rest in God until you do it honestly. I speak with others from sad experience but I can tell you the relief that comes to you and the joy in restored service to God is far beyond describing. Oh what a wonderful understanding God we worship and adore, praise His wonderful name and the joy in knowing Him. Remember Immediate action must be taken!!

Joys Prayer.

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father,

we all have sinned and come far far short of the glory of God but we are aware that sin separates us from the love of God and the beautiful fellowship we can enjoy with you when we walk in obedience to your will for our day to day lives. Wr pray for all who are walking in darkness and havn't seen the light of God in the face of Jesus Christ that they may see and believe. Also we pray for backsliding believers that they will see the foolishness in recognising your heavy hand upon them and not relenting. Lord break them down and bring them to that place of humility and repentance that they may enjoy one more that sweet communion with you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen

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Think Spot 29th October 2012

“From the time the traffic lights took to change, God changed me forever”

As I entered the room at the invitation of a young couple eager to share their new faith with their close friends I was confident through God this would be a night to remember. I had that wonderful assurance that He was going to move in saving power that night as I explained the commandments one by one.

Very quickly she made up her mind to repent and asked me how she could become a Christian. I spoke of the cross and its significance. How Jesus had kept the commandments and how he could remove our breaking of the law having suffered our consequences and forgiving us in the process. Also I explained about Him giving to us His robe of righteousness to wear as a gift when we stand before His Father. She knelt in submission and deep repentance and through faith received the joy of the Lord into her life. I looked towards her husband and he looked at me and said “That's not for me.” Strange as it may seem I knew this would happen so I said quietly to him. “I know you are not ready for this yet but it will happen soon.”

I think to myself that maybe when he approaches any traffic lights now that are red if his mind does not go back to that eventful day when God spoke and he responded, “Now is the day of salvation if any man hear his voice and respond he will be saved” (2 Corinthians 6:2)

Remember today is the day of salvation another day may not come like this one. Pharaoh, hardening his heart, thought he could keep putting the day off and kept changing his mind. Eventually the day came when he presumptuously thought he would come off best yet again but instead God hardened his heart and his opportunity was gone forever. When God sent the mighty wind to drive back the waters of the red sea to allow Israel to cross safely onto safe land he pursued as ever thinking “I am in charge here”. What happened? God caused the winds to change direction and as far as puny man was concerned “One puff was enough” and Pharaoh was finished forever.

Joys Prayer

You are the Almighty God who cannot be contained in anything or in any given place for You are far above all and have all power, all knowledge, you see everything and everybody. You truly are an awesome God, yet you think about us. You created us for your glory and although we have all strayed from your chosen pathway for us.

Help us to recognise the moment when you are confronting us and drawing us by your love to respond and to see clearly the relationship you desire for us to have with yourself. That we are incomplete and unfulfilled apart from You. To say “NO LONGER” to the sin that draws us away from you such as the pride and stubbornness of Pharaoh. You have said “Humble yourself and in due season you will be exalted” May it be so for your name sake… Amen

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Think Spot 5th November 2012

“For me to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1: 21)

“What do you mean we must be born again? Isn't this a Christian country?” These two questions plus a tug on my arm as I walked down the centre aisle after the mid week service were put to me by a lady who had been going to our mission church for a long while but never normally said too much. Mrs D had been diagnosed with cancer and was on a tablet system to hold back the cancer from spreading. The problem was that when she arrived in church on a Sunday or Tuesday evening she usually fell asleep especially during Bible teaching time. (The tablets had that effect on her.)

This particular night she had looked sleepy on arrival but as i continued in my studies through the book of john. we had arrived at john3:3, a very important verse -“You must be born again, except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Jesus words were being addressed to a religious leader named Nicodemus. I had explained that just because you hold a high position in a church doesn’t mean you are a christian. Anyone, everyone must be born again to get into heaven. Everyone needs a supernatural work done in them by TheHoly Spirit to bring them to the new spiritual birth.

Mrs D was angry as she said “Surely this is a Christian country isn't it? I sent up an arrow prayer quickly and then said calmly ”Mrs D what do you think?” She surprised me by saying' Well with all the horrible things going on here I suppose it isnt and Mr Allis please help me I want to become one. I was only too pleased to advise her as to the next step. “Mrs D, I will visit you in your home.“ Shortly after this her daughter rang me and told me her mum had been rushed into hospital and would have to have an operation. Whether she would pull through the operation or not was not certain.

The next time I visited the hospital Mrs D had been operated on and was lying there unconscious. I approached the bed and prayed for her knowing she could hear me but could not respond. That was the last time I saw her alive. She died peacefully safe in the arms of Jesus. For her only a short life as a born again Christian on earth but now for her to die was gain. Death is but a doorway into a life eternal of bliss. The psalmist wrote “In your presence is fullness of joy and at your right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”

Paul imprisoned under house arrest was chained to a guard. before he was sent for trial and ultimately died as a martyr he said while chained to a guard. “for me to live is christ and to die is gain.” Philippians 1: 21. Paul had no doubt about his future eternal existence which he looked forward to so much. He loved serving his Lord on earth but if he were to die whether by force or old age he knew that through His Saviour he had the promise of eternal life. Do you have that same confidence as Mrs D and Paul the apostle? It is important that you can answer that question in the affirmative.

Joys Prayer

When we consider martyrs who have died for their faith they have marched towards the stake singing hymns of triumph and glory seeing only Jesus in their vision. We are sure Lord that Jesus draws near to the dying saint to encourage and make us ready for the big day.

Amen

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Think Spot 12th November 2012

Moving Home and choosing a new church ?

We will assume you have already prayed about the matter when you knew you were moving to a new location. If you had the choice of where to live then you would have prayed and then looked at the area noting where different churches were situated, Is that right? Maybe your prayer would have been along the lines of “Lord, where do you want my family and I both to live and worship? I personally want to serve you in a church where I can just sit back and listen to nice comfortable sermons that do not make me think too much where I have to change my life style. Somewhere, where the seats are comfortable, the people friendly, and where not too many questions asked as to what my past life has been like. Somewhere pleasant to go to from time to time.” Well I certainly do not hope you prayed in that way. The truth is new, genuine Christian people will be looking for a church where they can be assured Jesus Christ is central in the church ministry.

A keen Christian, which I hope you are, will be wanting to attend a church where Jesus Christ is right in the centre of the church's teaching and

(1) where a real sense of God's presence is surely sensed whenever a meeting is about to take place and this is confirmed to you as the service continues.

(2) It will be a fellowship of God's believers where the ministry of God's Word is taught accurately, in language you can understand and where it is applied unreservedly, honestly and with understanding.

(3)It will be a place where those who minister are competent. God called teachers. These men of God will not take God's Word lightly and certainly they are not full of jokes that have no relevance to the preached Word. These men will realise they are standing in God's holy place as they stand to preach. They preach “Thus says the Lord” Nothing flippant at all entering their vocabulary.

(4)They will be fully aware of their responsibility of revealing to the people what they themselves have learned in the secret place as they have prayed over and painstakingly searching God's Word diligently for the richest of food for God's people.

(5)They will be aware of the need to bring milk for the new believer as well as meat for the more mature from God's Word so that all who will attend will be catered for.

New people will need to be sure they will be well fed regularly from God's Precious Word! In the scriptures we read of those who looked up and were not fed. That would be a travesty especially for those who have come a distance, or are weighed down with troubles at home or at work and need an uplift for the downcast or an encouragement into some new venture God has already planned for them.

They will need the assurance of God's Word required for guidance into that new project. Yes, may well say “that's a tall order, isnt it?” You will see now that there is a tremendous responsibility upon the preacher and the church to fill the pulpit with such ministry where the people look up and are fed adequately, according to their various needs. Testimonies are fine especially at baptisms but they must never replace the preached Word.

The new person to the church will be looking at its worship. Is its content doctrinally sound and words easy to see and sing? Is the focus centred on the music alone or the words also? All words of spiritual songs should be centred on God's precious powerful Word with Christ at the centre. Again may I be permitted to say that although many modern songs today are centred on God's Word they need to cover more than expressing the love of God. That is very important but what about God's holiness, His majesty and power, His mercy and judgement, His guidance and compassion etc. It is also a danger for songs to focus on man and man's love for God rather than God and His love for His people. God's power available towards man! God's wisdom! God’s power and strength! God's perfect peace! Glory to God means just that. “To God be the glory great, great things... HE HAS DONE!” We are to expect new people to be looking for such worship and so they should find it.

The new person to a church will be looking for good fellowship! When they arrive they receive a warm friendly welcome. They could be shown to a seat also if possible. Following the meeting, over refreshments, is a further chance for them to be introduced to other different members of the church, being made aware they are there for the first or second time. It means such a lot to a newcomer to be thus welcomed. New families need to be easily directed also to the Sunday School and youth departments as well. Christianity is to be practised as well as believed. If they are interested in Home Groups at least by the second visit they should be made aware of a Group suitable and near as possible to their own new home.

These are evidences then of a truly live evangelical church which should be in place. They have moved to one new home now they need a good spiritual home. Take your time looking and praying regarding both your home and new spiritual home. Prayer is of ultra importance for you but also make sure it is a church given to prayer about everything. You will experience Bible study and Prayer meetings and will be requested to help in Outreach. These are hallmarks of a lively evangelical church. Be prepared to be an active Christian in your new spiritual fellowship.

Some while ago when I was looking for a church at one time I spent the best part of a year making sure it was the right one. It is so important to know you are where God wants you to be and to worship and serve Him. So pray continually and pray expectantly and don't forget to glorify and thank Him when you find your new spiritual home. Have your friends pray for you to that end. May God richly bless you, your family and the new church family where you settle.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father,

Please help people seeking for God as well as our brothers and sisters in Christ, to find their true spiritual home where their families , each member in particular, can find the church where they can settle down, to enjoy its church programmes activities. A place where they are all sensing that they are seen to be real assets to their new church through God's wonderful grace.

Each church is like a jig saw with some pieces already in place but with enough spaces for those God wants to join where they will work together to complete the local body with its activities towards others in the fellowship as well as in the surrounding neighbourhood of the church. Please give clarity of the understanding of your will, in Jesus name! Amen.

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Think Spot 26th November 2012

Letter to a friend

Hi there, this week I needed to write to someone who had shown interest in what they had read from my writings but ended up by saying “but I do not believe in God at this time.” My concern for this person led me to compose a letter prayerfully to try to help her come to a knowledge of the Truth. This format may be of help to you as a believer wanting to share something of your faith with a neighbour, relative or simply a friend or someone you met briefly either abroad or some distance away from your home. Or it could be part of a discussion or conversation you have with them next time you meet.

Hi there , Thanks for your previous correspondence it was most helpful to discover where you stood in relation to belief in God. May I politely ask you to look out of your window at home and see the beautiful countryside around you. Or if you are not privileged to live in the country to visit a forest or Country Park and simply have a closer look at what you see there. At this time of year there are an amazing change of colours of the leaves on different trees as they change to a golden hue.

Look above your heads and see the brilliant night sky when many stars and planets become visible on certain clear nights. Then look closely at an insect and a huge mammal are they not precisely and delicately made? Then consider your own astonishing body. Isn't it intrinsically made ? If you look at Paul's letter to the Romans in the New Testament you will see there what mans excuses are and God's answers to those various excuses. The Bible is the Book of Books to read. With God's help asked for you will then understand it. You need to ask Him as He is the author and inspirer of every word written by 40 different writers over 1600 years. The first obviously not knowing the first. This Bible (meaning library of books) contains all we need to know in relation to all matters of faith and practice including lessons on life, ourselves and God Almighty Himself. His powers of All seeing, All knowing and doing. He is all powerful.

Consider this even as you read or listen to this letter. At this very moment there is a factory working inside of you. What are you doing? You are non active in respect of this phenomenon inside of you. Who is responsible? Who is giving you the ability to breathe, hear, listen or taste, feel or walk etc. Where does the credit go? You wake up in the morning and you expect it to get light at a particular time. Who puts the 'light' on? Similarly at night when darkness descends where does it come from and who puts the 'light' out? Read Genesis, (which means beginnings) the first book in the Bible to discover the answers to those important questions. There is a verse in the bible which reads “The fool in his heart has said there is no God.? Psalm 14:1. The Bible also says when a person becomes a Christian he (or she) becomes a brand new person on the inside. It cannot just happen for it is work done by God, it is a supernatural work of God, a spiritual accomplishment.

It happened to me in 1962, God began this amazing work in me and here we are in 2012 and God is even more real to me now after serving Him as a missionary in London's difficult regions(He never let me down even once} He enabled me to help others to become Christians as I pointed them to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Saviour. I have held pastorates in different parts of the country and taught Believers how to share their faith with others simply for 20 years. To go into their neighbourhoods and explain the gospel.

I give all the glory to God for my life. Al I have achieved through Him to change peoples lives and glorify Him. I just cannot keep quiet about the One who loved me and gave His life for me, died for my wrongs to remove punishment from me, rose from the dead, ascended into Heaven and one day is returning for me either when I die or when He returns visibly for every eye to see which He promises in the Bible.

Yes I am known as joyful Jim and my joy is in serving Him in telling others of Him. Finally as you share your testimony do not forget to include words like these...We will pray for you that you may too enter into this magnificent fulfilling relationship with God its mote than believing it is getting to KNOW HIM as a real living being in a day to day experience. Encourage the contact to read Mark's gospel offering to read it with them pointing out the many instances concerning those making contact with Jesus for the first time and their responses and changed their lives.

May our wonderful Lord bless you as you share the gospel either by letter, email or in a coffee shop or wherever the Lord sends you. God bless you!

Jim

Joys prayer

Dear Lord and loving heavenly Father, Please let this dear friend come to see that this change of direction in their lives is going to be for the best result possible ever in their lives. Help me to speak clearly and with conviction as I share with others this glorious good news which all must hear to help them come to a knowledge of the Truth to transform their lives. May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in your sight O Lord my Rock and Redeemer. In Jesus name Amen

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Think Spot 3/12/2012

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G'day and welcome to Partakers! Welcome also to Monday and our Think Spot together!

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

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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Think Spot 10th December 2012

Keep focussed on Christ

I don't need to tell you my Christian friends, we are all facing troubled times around the world's churches. The devil is on the prowl as a hungry lion trying in various forms to bring God's people away from the Bible and believing that Jesus Christ alone can save us. He will try to put us off balance between loving our neighbour and adhering closely to God's Holy Word. We are being told “Who are you to judge others faiths no one has the complete truth” . But the fact is we do have the complete truth. The Bible speaking of itself reads “God's Word is Truth” (John 17:17;).

Again we have people coming at us with this argument “Why do you say Christ is the only way to God?” The answer again from God's perfect Holy Word is conclusive. Jesus said "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life! No man comes to the Father except through Me! .” (John 14:6:) Could anything be any clearer. ? The question we have to ask these complainers is this “Who else has ever been or is competent to be The Way to God.”? Who else has the qualifications of a perfect Being? Jesus Christ alone fulfils that unique position doesn’t He? On the other hand The Bible has passed through all manner of criticism aimed at it and comes out on the other side unscathed. All other so called Systems of Truth have been found out to be full of discrepancies and have been changed many times. People who have lived by the truth of God's Word have never doubted its inerrancy and time after time we read of science having to bow to its authority and accuracy.

What I say may sound over simplified but it needs to be said. There are many muddied so called routes to God but they are all faulty. For starters, every other leader of the different religions is dead. Jesus Christ however is very much alive and proves He is risen by His Presence in all believing Christians today! “He walks with me and and talks with me every day. You ask me how I know he lives? He lives within my heart.” If the Bible is True and Jesus Christ is the Truth then Heaven is real. Jesus spoke of it several times and other writers in the Bible have spoken of its magnificent beauty and perfectness.

However, If Heaven is a perfect place it can only take perfect people to live in it otherwise it will cease to be Heaven. So how is this achieved? By all of us becoming new creations by the grace of God.(2 Corinthians 5:17;) If we are to be fitted for Heaven we must be changed now but how? Jesus Christ is the only answer, that's what Christmas and Easter are all about. “Christ Jesus coming into the world (Christmas) to save sinners which we all are. (Easter) (1 Timothy 1:15;) Sins removed and a beautiful robe of Jesus Christ's righteousness to take its place. My sins gone and His righteousness to take their place. The Bible says Mercy and grace have kissed each other. Because this is so I can exclaim, “No condemnation now I dread.” Clothed and prepared for Heaven. So through repentance and faith, the only way of acceptance with God, we have peace with God and an assured glorious future in Heaven.

So as we mix with all shades of beliefs in the people we meet we need to be on the alert and keep God's armour in place. “Leave no unguarded place” is the command so we must be diligent and watchful. Truth is truth and error is error. There is no grey area. Check with God's Holy Word on any issue you are in doubt about.One final word to leave with you, I encourage you to learn the following qoute off by heart. I have, and it has proved helpful to me concerning ur reading the Bible regularly. “Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, practice it to be holy.” Bye, have a nice Jesus filled day !

Joys prayer

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father,

Make us more aware when we are being tempted regarding the Bible and the Person of Jesus Christ. Prick our consciences and make us quick to see truth from error when conversation or the printed page attempts to distract us or remove from us our beliefs in the veracity of God's Word and the uniqueness of Jesus Christ as both Saviour and Lord which is so clear in Scripture. Forgive us for doubts and fears and help us to be diligent in searching God's Word and help us to be living 24/7 for and with Christ.. In Jesus Name, Amen.

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  • Hansarsamui

    私はまた私の仲間は速やかに私が表明していなかった恐ろしい疑念を持っていてもあなたのWeb​​ページ上に配置優れたソリューションをチェックアウトしているように見えた

    Dec 13, 2012 at 6:32 am

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Think Spot 7th January 2013

Jesus Christ always the Winner

“I will build My Church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18)

Jesus spoke these words sometime before his crucifixion. He knew what was going to happen to Him for both He and His Father had planned His journey to earth and His incredible entry into the world through a virgin named Mary. Because of the purpose of His mission He knew the hostility which waited for Him and He knew that intense volume of hatred towards Him would rear its ugly head like a monster with every step he took. He also knew the personal battles with Satan that would take place. Satan knew his own end would come through Jesus Christ The Son of God.

“If you are the Son of God change these stones into bread”. Satan was tempting Jesus in order that He fail in His mission. One small slip and Christ's mission would have failed and our hope of Heaven would have vanished into thin air as they say.

The question is “Could Jesus Christ have failed?” Our knowledge of God the Father, Jesus Christ His Son and The power of The Holy Spirit lead us to believe that mission could not fail. How could a creature created by God have the final word?

Jesus Christ , the Co- Creator, was never caught out even once by the devil's activity for God alone knows all things. He alone had planned the end well in advance from the very beginning, well before man or woman went off track.. He had the solution all worked out as to how man could be restored so that God could heal the backslider and bring them back to a healthy restored relationship and fellowship with Himself.

Over the Christmas period is it possible that you have let your guard down through getting involved into the materialistic side of Christmas with its social pursuits that otherwise you would have normally steered clear of. “Its only a bit of fun” they said but it led you astray. If you have erred and fallen from the planned path God had for you, be assured God knew it would happen and is eager for you to return to Him like the prodigal son. (Luke 15)

We do stumble and fall but we have God's rich assurance of forgiveness if we return to Him. Our faults whatever they may be, if we fully admit our foolishness, He will restore us to where we should be. We do not point the finger at you but simply point you to One who does sympathizes with us having been tempted in all ways like us. He is ready to forgive. God has everything in place for a return to Him from failure. (Remember Peter when he denied the Lord?)

But never take God's forgiveness for granted by living any kind of life style and presuming His forgiveness. If we really are Born Again, born from above, we shall feel the pain of letting God down and remain uncomfortable until we return to God with sorrow over our sin.

Adam received a summons after his backsliding but then he heard of God's sufficiency for him reflected in the clothing he received through the death of an animal. God's wonderful gift of grace. Clothed in Christ's righteousness we are safe for eternity and in His righteousness we are a constant threat to Satan but our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is always the Winner! We also can win in Christ as we look to Him for His strength in the day of battle. We are saved, by grace we are strengthened, by grace we are safely preserved for Heaven by His amazing grace. Hallelujah!!

Have a great week in Christ!

Joys prayer

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father,

As we begin a new year with you we praise you Lord for the many promises you have for us to take hold of and apply to our every day lives. Forgive us for our mistakes last year when at times we foolishly let the guard down and our minds were invaded with thoughts we knew were wrong but allowed them to control us. You warned us not to allow room for the devil to come in and we felt awful when we let You down.

Humbly we thank You for your promise of forgiveness if we confess and forsake those sins that so easily seem to grab an easy hold. You have power to cleanse us and give us the desire to be more like You each day.

You have promised protection for us. You know the strength of the enemy and you have overcome the evil One.. Help us to remember to ask for your heavenly armour to protect us on every part of our spiritual bodies and to seek positively to please you in every place we find ourselves each day. We love you Lord!

Amen

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Think Spot 14th January 2013

Fervent Prayer

In James chapter five there are several verses related to prayer. James is writing about the kind of praying that produces results and he gives an excellent example of an illustration of fervent prayer in the life of Elijah the Old Testament prophet. In chapter 5:17; James is talking of the fervent prayer of a righteous man who we read about in the Old Testament in the Books of Kings. Elijah the prophet was living an upright righteous life when he prayed for the cessation of rain and then for the necessity of rain in a time of famine. On both occasion the Lord answered positively. This morning I simply want to draw your attention to the words fervent and righteous. You may like to read the accounts in 1 Kings 17 through 18 to pick up the details.

Powerful is the description of prayer here and we learn that much is achieved by it. Three valuable truths we may learn here concerning prayer.

1. Faith - Elijah we are told did not stop praying in the time of intense famine for the requirement of rain even when there was so visible evidence that his prayer would be answered. But It was laid on his heart by God, we believe, and so he persevered through all the doubts that might come into his mind to prevent him praying . He might well have thought “This is unreasonable it hasn’t rained for 3 years and six months what chance is there of it happening now?.” Have you felt like that about unanswered prayer for someone or something that hasn't happened for many years? Praying for a relatives conversion, a job that just hasn't come into sight? An illness that has persisted ? A money problem that just will not go away.? Relationships broken you cannot understand. Faith is VITAL in prayer.

2. Necessary -Elijah was praying for something needful, something God had promised in His Word. What was that promise? If God's people would stop worshipping idols and turn away from them and worship the One true God Jehovah the promise was that the rain would come. I know of someone who prayed for a relatives conversion for over 40 years, daily and consistently they prayed earnestly over those years. The circumstances in which the prayer was answered were painful but it happened!! God had heard the fervent prayer begun 40 years previously and now was answered. The promise in the Bible believed and acted upon was what? “God is not willing that anyone perish but that all come to repentance and faith in Christ Jesus.”

3. Consistency - Elijah watched for the answer and at the appointed time 3 years and six months to the day the rain came “The fervent prayer of a righteous man was powerful” But be warned. The Bible clearly teaches us that if we harbour unrighteous sin in our hearts the Lord will not even hear us let alone answer us. Prayer is powerful but we must not take God for granted. So be encouraged and pray on.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father,

We come to You the Almighty God and thank You so much for the relationship we may have with You because of your amazing grace!

Sins forgiven and a home in Heaven to look forward to and for now a constant fellowship we may enjoy working with You in your plans and purposes for our lives. Prayer is the method you have arranged for us to keep in contact with you and to follow you.

Prayer we admit is never easy especially when we do not feel like it especially when circumstances are seemingly against the answers and doubts attack our faith.

We look at the circumstances rather than straight at God. Forgive us for our fears and unnecessary unbelief.

Help us to be diligent in prayer with righteous living and with the constant desire to please You. Help us to search for your promises and pray according to them.

In Jesus name

Amen

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Think Spot 21st January 2013

“The God of all comfort”

Last Wednesday, in the city of London, we saw and heard on our T V screens the report of an experienced helicopter pilot who because of fog was diverting to an air pad which took him over the Thames near Waterloo and Vauxhall Station where he collided with the top of a very high crane which resulted in his death and one other passer by on the ground. As the helicopter crashed to the ground, a horrific fireball, stretching for at least a hundred metres which amazingly didn't cause an even worse disaster. Our heartfelt sympathies are with the pilots partner, and his two children who are absolutely shocked. Something no one ever expected to happen. He was experienced, top of his profession but he sadly died. Also the passer by who just happened to be there also died. How the relatives need our prayers.

I will never forget an equally devastating fire that also took place in London, in Peckham Rye some while ago but still most vivid in my memory. It destroyed a prefabricated building one intense winter when an oil burner was accidentally knocked over in the bathroom and a small girl who was visiting her Grandad was burned to death in that fire. I knew her family and as the minister of the Mission where she attended I knew it was necessary for me to visit her parents and family and express my sympathy and any words of comfort I could help them with. The night before I had arranged in my diary to visit I was in prayer before our Lord seeking His guidance. I was crying out to God for help. During that night He brought to my mind some words that Hudson Taylor, missionary to China spoke when he said “You never know the strength of God until you have to. Its not our feeble hold upon him but His mighty grasp upon us.” The apostle Paul wrote “When I am weak then I am strong” Why? Because when we recognise our weakness we are forced to lean upon and trust Him.

The next morning, I arrived on that doorstep trembling but trusting God completely. I felt weak in every way. I hadn’t slept well but when the door opened instead of the little girls mother saying “Where was your God when this happened?” Or “Why didn't He stop it occurring?” She quietly asked me into her little home and she listened as I expressed our Mission family's sympathy and said we would do anything which was needed. I asked if I might pray there and then. She allowed me to pray for her grieving family. This lovely, sweet, beautiful little girl was the close friend of my small son so she was well known to both me and my family. So there was more comforting to give at home also. Many of you have been through similar circumstances with either your own family suffering or close friends and you will relate straight away to this tragic event and agree that you never know until its needed what strength God can give to you.

J C Ryle, Bishop of Liverpool said “God never promised us an easy journey in this life only a safe landing” .

“The Lord is able to do exceeding abundantly above all we could ever ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20;)

Yes even beyond our comprehension.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father,

We come to you the God of all comfort and remember as we read the Bible of the comfort and compassion that Jesus showed to bereaved people. His deep concern for those whose family members suffered death suddenly. We pray for the family of the pilot of the helicopter who died in London last Wednesday. A partner and two children left behind we know are heartbroken. They were a lovely family and now depleted they need your comfort and strength.

We pray for those who know them who will attempt to bring comfort to them. Especially for the friends from their schools who know them to help in whatever way they can. We all do feel helpless when tragedy strikes and do not know how to deal with our own or others emotions. Help us Lord to realise You have all the answers and we ask that we might be Christ-like in any help we give to needy cases in bereavement.

Thank you that we can look to you as our refuge and strength a very present help in time of trouble. In Jesus Name, Amen

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Think Spot

28th January 2013

An interesting picture of the power of preaching I believe, is found in Revelation 1 where we see a picture of The Lord Jesus Christ, who is The Word of God in all His glory, powerfully speaking in a vision to John the apostle on the island of Patmos. John describes Jesus Christ in this way, “His voice was like the sound of rushing waters”. He then describes the powerful effect of what he heard. He likened it to a sharp double edged sword in Christ's mouth . He then sees in this same vision seven stars are held in Jesus Christ's hand . ~

Now if the seven stars referred to are those who are leaders of the seven churches addressed by Jesus Christ in the next few chapters and preach the Word, they are in Christ's hands and surely Christ's words are to come from their mouths. Consider what that would mean for today’s churches. What powerful preaching would come from those who preach with Christ controlling their lives and mouths. ~

In Romans 10 we read that preaching is a vital necessity and those called to preach are sent and empowered by God. It is a very special calling. So is it not a fair question to ask why is so much preaching today lame and ineffective? Why do the listeners becomes bored ? Why is preaching spoken of as if it should only have a small part in the service? Some even say out of date. Powerful preaching is so necessary today.

~

So if there is a scarcity of powerful preaching today why isn’t more attention given to this desperate need? Because, we know Its amazing, powerful affect can be shattering to Satan's domain. It is meant to do just that. This positive, powerful preaching builds magnificently the Kingdom of God, and God's people grow strong and are more affective witnesses through its direct work into their lives. ~

How much time does the average preacher spend in the presence of God praying over his message and in preparing that Word from God? John Wesley said “the preacher should spend five hours out of every twenty four in study and in prayer for his preaching.” Why that amount of time? Because of its importance to find the precise meaning of words to be preached and to be applied to the hearers. To seek earnestly the anointing of the Holy Spirit. Our Lord blesses immensely the church which gives their minister's time preparing and preaching while others may perform other of his tasks. The church has many parts and gifts to compliment their pastor's ministry. (1 Corinthians 12-14) ~

Are you exercising your gifts to help your minister? I ask you, where is the ardent christian today who is eager to give themselves completely to live for Christ, dying to self whose soul is thirsts for the living God. When you gather to worship, are you looking eagerly to hear the words God wants you to hear in the sermon? Are you looking to be fed, strengthened and equipped to serve Christ where ever you go, and being an effective witness for Jesus Christ to those who don't know Him? ~ Pray for your preachers and be willing to be obedient to God as He speaks through them. And if you are a preacher, then please do take the time to often be in His Word, praying for Him to speak through you so that the church may be built up.

Joy's Prayer

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Think Spot 4th February 2013

Joy In Sharing Jesus

Joy and I are always wanting to share knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ together to as many people as we can. We think we are more successful following the biblical pattern 'Two are better than one' Jesus disciples were sent out two by two. Paul often had others with him as he proclaimed the gospel. There is no doubt there is a comfortable feeling experienced when we are in company as we seek to share our faith. ~

The people we meet also feel at ease when a man and woman are witnessing together rather than singly. Especially if a man is wanting to talk to a woman. Far better for a number of reasons why it is better to witness together as a pair. Now, if we have met with Jesus Christ in an unmistakeable way then we are the best witnesses to share with others the wonderful changes He has made in our lives. We are 'new creations' (2 Corinthians 5:17)

The peace and joy in our lives should be evident to our contacts for them to recognise what they are missing. His great sacrificial love to be made known. Equally importantly, when we have received Jesus Christ as our own Saviour and repented of our wrongs, acknowledging Him as our Lord, The Holy Spirit bears witness with our spirits that we are the children of God. We are privileged to have access to that holy boldness as we come to our Lord in prayer to receive the strength by faith and the ability to share our faith. We then may go with confidence as witnesses bearing witness to the amazing relationship and fellowship we have with Christ on a 24/7 basis. We then commit our way to Him and to meet whoever the Sovereign arranges to cross our path each day. ~

Although we are saved and cleansed through the efficacy of the precious blood of Christ poured out for us on the cross and have full assurance of peace with God we have to admit we muddy our feet daily. Our part then is to keep close to our Lord acknowledging our faults quickly and getting a clean sheet and then we can be assured He will use our witness effectively as He shines through us to a very needy people who have not benefited from that vital union with Him. We speak the Truth in love, leaving a tract if possible with a contact number and proceed on to our next encounter. The joy we have when sharing is sometimes overwhelming and we then realise how privileged we are to be part of Christ's mission on earth in 2013. ~

Joys Prayer ~

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father, ~

It is true that two are better than one when sharing our faith. If we do things your way we know we shall have success. Time and time again we see in the Scriptures people who mess up their lives as they go their own way and fail to do things your way. ~ Thank you for the reminder that You will equip us. May we know a more intimate fellowship in prayer with You this year. Help us make progress in our prayer life and to experience assurance that You want to speak through us in our daily walk to others we meet. Help us to show Your love now to others! In Jesus name,

Amen.

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Think Spot 11th February 2013

Doubting the Promises of God

A man was heard to say “Do you really mean that?” Someone had promised to care for his animals while he was away on holiday. He had been concerned for his dog and wanted to make sure it would be well cared for, fed, and given regular exercise. The kind person prepared to help was a good man and one that could be trusted. Before the man went on holiday the kind friend drove him to the airport and then took the dog home and cared for him as he had promised. That man was trustworthy and the owner of the dog knew it. He could relax on holiday not worrying about his canine friend.

Now then, we have Someone very powerful, loving and gracious, Who has promised to watch over us every step of our journey from earth to heaven. We become members of His family when we trust in Jesus Christ as our Saviour and Lord and His promises include never to leave us alone ever. Either He or our guardian angels are watching over us night and day. (Hebrews 1) In addition to these regular guardians of our souls we are instructed that sometimes “we may be entertaining angels unawares”.

Now there's a thought . I recommend you take that thought to bed with you. On one occasion in in 2 Kings 6:15ff we read of the prophet Elisha with his young friend in what appeared to be in a tight corner. A massive enemy army coming against them. The young man was terrified. “What shall we do?” Elisha replied to the young man by his side “Do not be afraid because those who are with us are more than those who are with them” Then Elisha prayed and said “Lord open this mans eyes that he may also see “ His prayer was answered immediately and he saw what had been previously invisible to his natural eyes, the Almighty God's armies protecting both he and Elisha.

The dog I mentioned earlier was out of sight of his owner but well cared for by the trusted friend. How much more can we trust in our great all powerful, all knowing, all seeing God, “who is able to do exceedingly above all we could ever ask or think.” Maybe you as well as Joy and I are going through a testing time at present but may our faith be focussed on God's faithfulness and watchfulness. Remember He will not let anything happen to us until He is ready to call us home. So let all of us “rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him” to both hear and answer our prayers. He will keep His many promises towards us especially to never leave or 'drop us' as the word 'forsake' literally means.

Joy's Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father, we need to hear homely stories like this one about a man and his dog and the careful preparations he made for the dog while separated from him, and then to see that You Lord are so close and always strong for us especially when we feel weak and vulnerable. Thank you for your many promises we know you will keep concerning us and the fact that You see us all the time and have power to protect, guide and provide. In our weakness be our strength. Shield and guard us from the enemy with his attacks on our faith. Help us to keep our armour on and leave no unguarded place.

In Jesus Name,

Amen.

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Think Spot

18th February 2013

The Pilgrims Progress and you

If there is one book which has proved very helpful to me in my own Christian pilgrimage it is “The Pilgrims Progress”. It is full of imagery which captivates the mind as you read of the adventures of Pilgrim. He is laughed at, mocked and ridiculed as he leaves home seeking salvation and the removal of his burden on his back representing his sin. We read of how his name is changed to Christian when he comes to the Cross and of the many dangers he meets after that on route. He has enemies he engages in battle with. He speaks of the many helps he received as he travels on to the Beulah Land and glory. He carries a scroll (the Bible) which is to lead him to his final destination. If you are struggling with sin, or faith or uncertainty then read this book in Modern English.

~

This is a book written by a man of God many years ago, who lived for God. He was a man well acquainted with troubles, as he endeavoured to use his gifts of preaching in many open places and suffered imprisonment for the message of freedom he would proclaim to the masses. He was a pastor and preacher and the lover of people enough to tell out the gospel at the expense of his wife and life. He had a blind daughter so his family suffered at home as well. However in prison God gave him an amazing dream full of Christian life principles.

~

This book has been a worlds best seller over many years up to the present day. At his baptism my son gave his testimony saying what a great help Pilgrims Progress had been to him as it was read to him at bedtime each evening to show him the pathway to heaven. May I recommend its reading to you and to encourage you to learn from it . May it help you to become a stronger Christian and the children's version a blessing to your family.

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving heavenly Father, We come to You the Almighty God and praise You for your faithfulness when answering our many prayers. We desire more faith and ask your forgiveness when we let you down. ~

Forgive us Lord when our hearts are not always in all we do. Please, if necessary, give us a new heart or rekindle the desires we once had when we first tasted and received the Lord into our lives. Forgive us and cleanse us and renew our faith that we may honour You and give You glory due to your holy name! ~

In Jesus name we pray! ~

Amen

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Think Spot 25th February 2013

Are you bored with your quiet time?

Some years ago I was feeling jaded in my personal communications with God. My personal quiet times were becoming a burden. They were a duty rather than a delight. In fact I felt bored and not knowing what to do about it. Sure I was converted. I was a missionary in missionary service in a tough area of London. The world around me was pressing in on me. I was downhearted even near to depression. As a young missionary I was dry, very dry spiritually . I was simply going through the motions of Christian service. No one was getting converted. Was it all worth it ? I asked myself.

One morning I simply flicked my Bible open with little care which book in the Bible I came to and found myself in the opening chapter of the Song of Solomon. A book I was unfamiliar with. As I read mechanically through the first few verses I was directed to a cross reference in I Kings 4:29; through which God spoke loudly to me revealing my problem.

Solomon, King of Israel had been asked by the Lord which gift he required from God.. His answer pleased the Lord exceedingly and he was granted his gift of wisdom to rule his people. Then the Lord continues to say he was so pleased with Solomon's request for wisdom that He was going to give him a bonus. In the 'King James version' it reads that “God gave to Solomon riches and largeness of heart” What did that mean? I wondered. I knew it wasn't referring to the physical heart so it had to be a spiritual gift. Suddenly the truth dawned on me. My experience at that time was that I was shrivelled up in my spirit in unbelief. My spirit was dry. My faith was at a very low point. So I cried out in prayer for a larger capacity for God Himself as I understood the expression to mean. To increase my desires for God Himself not for anything to receive from him but for Himself. Immediately my spirit was awakened and I was praying the prayerful words of the psalmist when he sought God saying “My soul pants after God as the hart (young deer) pants for the water brooks."

We may be at the present time crying out to God for revival. To see our church enlarged and our Sunday Schools filled with children but maybe the problem lies closer to our very selves. Is God saying to us "why should I answer your prayers when you are so impoverished in your own souls and you are going through the motions in mechanical fashion. There is no life in what you say or do. Your hearts are not where they should be because they are shrivelled up with worldliness unbelief and subsequently you have little faith." Then I remembered God's words to Joel and Israel, “Return to God and He will return to you” Good advice indeed.

My prayer was answered, my heavy spirit lifted and my hunger for God increased and also for His Word . Once again I was enjoying God with a heart enlarged for God and a desire for more of God in my life. Faith was rekindled. My batteries recharged and things took off from there. May I suggest we all seek that blessing in order that we may fulfil our ultimate calling which is "to glorify God and to enjoy Him for ever"

Joys Prayer

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Think Spot 8th April 2013

“Your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” Psalm 119: 105

~

The day I was converted I longed to dig deep into the Bible and make up for the many years I had never hardly read it. I learned fairly quickly and the desire has always been there but not so strong as it is now when I am well into my 75th year. That desire has been further intensified by my being brought into contact especially over recent years with some of the finest preachers in the whole world on the Internet through web sites like “sermon. audio.” (You can freely download the cream of the best preaching over the whole world at this web site either mp3 or mp4 format.) This is not a plug but helpful advice from one who has been blessed mightily through it. What a privilege wouldn't you agree?

~

I have learned a tremendous amount by listening to a great number of preachers and Bible teachers who stand wholly on the Bible. They clearly explain the Bible by diligently studying many hours themselves not only for their own benefit or even their congregations but for the benefit of all who are earnestly wanting to get to grips with the content of the best book in all the world. The worlds best seller yet how many take advantage of the better side of the Internet and listen to the best exposition from God's Holy Word. I know you will say “But I know enough of the Bible, I am quite contented with my present knowledge.” or maybe you will say quite rightly “I am a practical Christian and I am getting on with living the Christian life.” I commend you for that and am happy with you up to a point.

~

In today’s age many are beginning to ask questions of us and demand quite rightly what Christianity is all about. My own experience over many years is that as we dig into God's Word for knowledge as well as understanding and apply it to our own individual lives, which is a must, of course, we do need to follow one of the most important Bible teachings in the entire Bible which is “Be ready to give a reason for the hope that lies within you” If we were football players we would practice and practice for hours in order to be at the top of our game. Likewise if we are good cooks we will do all we can to top the next meal we cook. We have an amazing text book for our profession but it needs studying to get the most and the best out of it. This readiness is not for preachers and evangelists alone but all of us who profess Christ as our Saviour Lord and King.

~

One last thought. It is such a full volume and needs to be studied slowly in order to go over and over verses which may be familiar in order to squeeze out the sweet beneficial nectar and fruit which is there if we search diligently. which may mean going over and over passages word by word but its worth it. We have the Bible in our own native language and have so many Commentaries Dictionaries and Lexicons and endless helps on web sites such as this one at Partakers where each download is free ( http://www.partakers.co.uk ) E-Sword (more free downloads.) Amazon Kindle books also are so easy to obtain and put onto your computer at very reasonable prices.. Whether you have a kindle, tablet, etc or not you can download a Kindle electronically. Yes you can. The 'App' is free from Amazon and the books include some of the best Christian authors from the present and the past.

~

We are greatly indebted to Dr Martyn Lloyd Jones for making us aware of the writers from the 16th to 18th century including the puritan era. Men's writings like Charles Spurgeon, Thomas Watson and J C Ryle to our attention. I could add John Stott, John Macarthur, John Piper, Al Martin, Paul Washer, Brian Green etc. The list is endless.

~

In this day and age everyone wants instant this and instant that. If you want to grow as a Christian you have to give attention to it and take the time. Turn the TV off for a couple of hours per day and you will be so blessed I can assure you. Can I recommend also David Pawson. Org,/ MLJ Trust. both free downloads, and if you seek the Lord for discernment Her will lead you to the best teachers you can learn so much from them. I can assure you the more you soak yourselves in God's Word the devil will be pressed back and will not want to come near you.

~

My reason for saying that is this. I would ask you to remember Matthew 4 and Luke 4 where Jesus is being tempted by the devil. Jesus answered by what means to defeat his foe? By quoting Bible texts at him and eventually the devil left him for a season. Clothe yourselves in God's armour each day (Ephesians 6:10-18;) and soak yourselves in God’s Word (not five minutes but at least an hour) plus prayer daily . God is the most important Person in the whole world and deserves our attention of Him. Remember one day we shall see Him. Better get to know Him right now don’t you think?

~

Joys Prayer

Gracious God and loving Heavenly Father,

It is our chief delight to talk with You and listen to you speaking to us through the Scriptures. Help us to make more time to spend with you and learn from The Holy Spirit all about Jesus Christ and God the Father as well as Himself. There are many things that occupy our minds during the day and if we are honest we don't need to be spending as much time as we do on the less important occupations. Forgive us and give us discernment to spend each day more wisely remembering the words of the Lord's Prayer “Your Kingdom come and Your will be done” and to feed on your strengthening word.

In Jesus name, Amen

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Think Spot 15 April 2013

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~

Have you ever wondered what constitutes a growing church? Do you know that it isn't just a list of names on the church roll or a social club. Neither is it a large number of people who have made "decisions for Christ". So, what constitutes a church which is living and growing in both spiritual quality as well as numbers? As a Christian to go into the week thinking about how you can contribute to the church you attend! A church should be filled with 'Kingdom of People' - people who declare Jesus is Lord, reflecting His values in word thought and action. A church which is full of people who allow their lives to be totally controlled by the Holy Spirit, and letting the Holy Spirit flow through them.

And even more! A church filled with people whose lives are oriented around the following!

  • Commitment to Jesus Christ - following Jesus' commandments, and learning daily hww to be more like Him.
  • Commitment to the Body of Christ, the Church, being willing to love the Body and Bride of Christ just as Jesus loves the Church.
  • Commitment to working within the local community - utilizing the gifts God has given them for the glory of God and exhortation of the other people.

There is no such thing as a full Christian life without those three things in the above set priority - Jesus, church, community. If the priority is shifted in any area then our priorities are wrong. Christians aren't to just to be Christians on a Sunday but 7 days a week. Not just to associate with other Christians, but to affect their local community throughout the week for the glory of Jesus Christ. To do this, this week, think about these questions:

  • Am I fully committed to Jesus and His teachings?
  • Am I fully committed to my local community and seeing Jesus glorified within it?

Go into the week, knowing God can use you to help both your church and your local community. Thank you.

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~

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Think Spot - 6th May 2013

G'day and welcome to Partake! Welcome also to Monday and our Think Spot together!

We have the start of a new week! Its Monday! How and in what circumstances are you trusting God? How did Jesus Christ trust in the Father? Jesus knew that the Father was going to bring Him back to life after his death on the cross. Jesus trusted the Father in this area of His life, just as he did in all aspects of his life. How are you doing? Do you have concerns and areas of your life where you need an assurance that God the Father will help you?

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Here are some simple steps which may help you maintain a trust in God.

1. Pray, casting all anxiety on God. He cares for you because you are His personal concern (The great apostle Peter, one of Jesus' closest friends wrote this in 1 Peter 5v7 "Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.")

2. Accept and thank God that His peace has filled that area (Another great apostle, Paul, wrote this in Philippians 4v7 says "Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.")

3. Learn to be content whatever your circumstances are, resting in God (Paul goes on in Philippians 4v11-12 "Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.")

4. Allow the Spirit to control your mind for life and peace (and again from the pen of the apostle Paul, this time in Romans 8v6 "So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.")

5. Trust God to fulfil your every need (Matthew records these words of Jesus in Matthew 6v32-33 "but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need." )

6. Obey and follow God's commands to love God and love others (Jesus is recorded in Matthew 22v37-40 "You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.' The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.")

7. Be prepared to be obedient to the Father, in supplying the needs of others you meet and therefore showing you love God and other people! One way to show you are trusting and loving God is to be the answer to the prayers of somebody else and showing that love to them! Ask God to show you, how you can help somebody else in need this week and showing your love.

Go in peace this Monday, into this week, knowing God is worthy of your trust! God will take care of you, but not always in the way you expect! Expect Him to allow circumstances and situations to arise where you are to trust Him fully! He will help you if you ask! After all, He knows you better than anybody! And don't be afraid to help somebody else because by doing that, you show you are loving and trusting in God!

Father, I pray that You would help us to trust in You and that You would supply our needs, calm our concerns and help us to love You and others more fully. 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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Monday Think Spot

22 April 2013

~

G’day and welcome to Partakers and our Monday Think Spot! We have the start of a new week! Its Monday! I don’t know how your weekend went, but I had a weekend that I want to forget quickly! It could be said that I did not have a peaceful weekend dealing with situations that arose unexpectedly. I am at peace now but was not at the time! I had this little voice inside me repeatedly saying “Trust me… Be at peace with yourself.” The Holy Spirit was ministering to me amidst the turmoil despite my often not wanting to hear that!

Matthew 5:9 records Jesus speaking these words “God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.

~

All over the world, the majority of people share a common desire for peace! But what is peace? The peace the world wants varies from the peace which we as Christian know to be true. 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, perfect harmony with other people, with circumstances and with self. While we are to aim for peace in all those areas, perfect peace in all those areas will not come until Jesus Christ comes again, and takes Christians to be with Him.

~

However, that doesn't give us as Christians a mandate to sit around not doing what we can for peace. Unsurprisingly the Bible has a lot to say about peace! Jesus commanded us to be peacemakers (Matthew 5:9) because our God is a God of peace (1 Thessalonians 5:23), and the Kingdom of God to which we belong is about peace in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17). Peace is to be our business! In a world full of peaceless-turmoil, such as conflicts between nations, conflicts between neighbours, conflicts even within families and conflicts within and between churches, Christians are to be peacemakers!

~

If you are a Christian, you have peace with God because Jesus Christ is your peace between God and yourself (Ephesians 2:13-18)! More than that, we are to be at peace with others! Now this can be hard! We are commanded to be peacemakers (Matthew 5:9, James 3:17-18), living at peace with everyone (Romans 12:17-20) and do everything possible which leads to peace and mutual encouragement (Romans 14:13-19).~

~

Go in peace this Monday, into this week, knowing that the God of peace lives inside you if you are one of His children! Go dispense this peace as God’s peacemaker where you go! You can be the peacemaker in your place of work, where you live, where you visit, where you socialize and even where you shop or play sport! If you are struggling to be a peacemaker in a difficult circumstance then ask this Holy Spirit who lives inside you to help you! He will help you if you ask! If you would not consider yourself a Christian and at peace with God, then ask Him to help you become one!

~

Father, we pray that this week we will do all we can as your followers to be peacemakers, to do all we can for peace and to make peace where ever we go and make a difference in world in conflict. We 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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Think Spot

28th April 2013

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I wonder what your last week was like! I know for me it was full of trial and yet with a deep-seated trust that God was in control, despite the events and discouragements I was undergoing! So, whether it was a week for you to forget or a week for you to remember, we now enter a new week! Last week we thought about trusting God in all circumstances! One of the natural outcomes of trusting God is joy - often an unspeakable joy that bubbles within you! A joy resulting from overcoming all that life throws at you, and overcoming those hurdles! It involves taking a daily commitment to follow Jesus Christ and not just a one off. It takes commitment, not comfort, to throw off hindrances and barriers. True joy results from being willing to allow the Holy Spirit to work in you, transforming you into the image of Jesus Christ, to the praise and glory of God the Father.

All of these things being done daily in your life lead to what I am convinced is the key to the reality of a successful Christian life - that key being joy. As you grow closer to Jesus, living in peace, trust and obedience, then your spiritual life will be your natural life and your natural life be your spiritual life! Your joy will abound and shine a light giving people a reason to ask "Where do you get all your joyous hope from?". You will then be able to· share Jesus as your source of joy. A joy that is anticipatory, expectant and true! Joy comes from putting Jesus first, others next and then yourself! Go practise it this week!

You can show this joy by singing, laughing, smiling, shouting praises to God, lifting hands in worship', and crying, but that is only the external part of joy. True joy also incorporates an internal joy. Real joy is when you can believe in: the mountain top when you are in your deepest valley. Abundant joy is being surrounded by darkness and still believing in 'the light'. Anticipatory joy is when amidst total confusion you still believe God has a plan of love for you. It was this type of joy that Jesus had, when in the garden praying, the night before he was betrayed, when full of mixed emotions and anguish he said "Not my will, but yours, Father!"

As sons and daughters of God, we have many reasons to be full of joy. Yet how often we forget! Here are some reasons for joy!

  • Psalm 51v8 & 12 - Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me-now let me rejoice. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you.
  • Jeremiah 15v16 - When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart's delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God of Heaven's Armies.
  • Luke 15v8-10 "Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Won't she light a lamp and sweep the entire house and search carefully until she finds it? And when she finds it, she will call in her friends and neighbours and say, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost coin.' In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God's angels when even one sinner repents."
  • 1 Peter 1v8-9 - You love Jesus Christ even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.

Do you desire to be' overflowing with joy today and this week? Go into this week with a joy that is anticipating and expectant! Do you need to hand over to Jesus a particular area of your life' where Jesus does not fully reign and have control? I pray that the Father will reveal more of Himself to you, as you daily seek His face, overcoming all hindrances to living a successful and joyful-Christian life. May the Holy Spirit who lives within you, if you are a Christian, continue to transform you into the image of the Son Jesus Christ, and all to the praise and glory of God the Father.

Amen.

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Think Spot - 27th May 2013

G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 27th May 2013!

Matthew 11:28-30 records these words of Jesus Christ. "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

Are not those simply amazing words? Not just anybody could say them. If the person who said them couldn't actually fulfil that promise, that would be one of the biggest hoaxes in all of history. But Jesus Christ is no hoax! He remains the only person in all of human history who is able to fulfil those words and live up to the promises he makes. He is totally trustworthy.

We don't like to ask for help. We are trained as children to be independent and not to rely on anybody else for anything ever. But this is contrary to what Jesus is about. To rely fully on ourselves for all things is to walk by sight and commit the sin of pride. To rely on Jesus and ask Him for help in all things is to walk by faith and with humility. True independence and freedom comes from being dependent on Jesus Christ and not being held back by anything or anyone else, such as family and our own wealth and possessions.

How are you doing at the start of this new week? Maybe you are feeling desolation and regret caused by decisions made sometime in your past. Give them up willingly to Jesus and don't keep trying to take it back like a security blanket! Are you feeling abandoned and lonely? Let Jesus encompass you in an embrace of compassion and let the Holy Spirit comfort and counsel you. Or perhaps are you feeling tired, burnt out and burdened?. Let Jesus give you the strength to endure! Give the burden to Jesus and let Him take the weight for you. Maybe you need to make a major decision and don't know what to do. Seek the wisdom of Jesus in making that decision. He will help if you ask. That's all part of Jesus being Jesus.

It may well be that you are being overwhelmingly tempted to sin against God, another person or even yourself? You cant resist for too long if you do it in your own strength, because you will eventually succumb to it. But if you ask God to help you overcome the temptation, He will do it - if you allow Him control and use your own self-control! After all, self-control is one of the evidences of the Holy Spirit working in you!

We all get those feelings of regret, desolation, abandonment, loneliness, despair, burdened and temptation. Feelings are important, because they are part of the human experience and if we didn't have them, we would be merely mindless androids. But feelings can also be very misleading. As Christians, we have to take it by faith that Jesus is there for us through those times. Because you are lonely, doesn't mean you are alone. Because you are tempted, doesn't meant that you have already committed the sin. Take it by faith that Jesus is answering desperate cries for help and is helping you. Take a few seconds now in this short silence to hand over these things to Jesus and ask him to help you.

Or it may just be that you are starting the week and you are feeling great and enjoying your dynamic relationship with God! Then keep going and letting Jesus be your strength, your wisdom and your help. But don't keep it to yourself - that would be selfish! Go to others you know who are in need, helping them where you can with an encouraging word or helping to supply their need. Be the practical and imaginative answer to their prayers.

Go into this new week, confident that Jesus is able to help you in every situation you face. Ask him to come to you, and He will - just as He has done for countless millions.

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Think Spot - 3rd June 2013

God's love in the Bible is seen as unfailing, everlasting, intimate, sacrificial, unbreakable, all-conquering, personal, great, immeasurable and all-knowing. This is seen supremely in the Cross of Jesus Christ, when He died for the sins of the world. Supreme love overcoming all that is not love. Even when great acts of evil are committed in the world, love continues despite such acts.

How are Christians to respond to this love of God?

The apostle John writes in 1 John 4v15-16 - If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

Our motivation as Christians is to love and to be love. This is a love, which is sacrificial and self-less. It is tough love which is of service to other people.

Loving and serving others, are the primary ways of showing you love God! It is easiest to love your friends. But Jesus commanded that his followers also love their enemies (Matthew 5:43-45)! Now that is very radical and can be difficult! We see constantly in the media and elsewhere, that regards our enemies, we are to be confrontational or at best to just ignore them!

Love and serve everyone

How is it possible to love our enemies? It is only with the help of God and His abundant grace towards us! We depend on the Holy Spirit who lives inside all Christians to empower and guide! To only love those who love you is what is expected by people everywhere as normal behaviour. But as a Christian, you are to do more! You are to be seen to love more than other people. You don't have to like others as friends, but you do have to love them as fellow human beings!

Go!

Go into this week, being prepared to show your love of Jesus Christ, remaining close to Him and serving other people generously with abundant grace-filled love! By loving and serving others, you become God's arms and legs in a physical world. One of the greatest limitations you face in loving and serving other people is a severe lack of imagination! So as you go into this week, ask God to expand your imagination to love and serve; as well as asking for the opportunities to do them. Loving and serving are hallmarks of an authentic Christian life. Love continues even amidst chaos and turmoil all around. Go and be part of the continuing of love. Thank you.

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Think Spot - 10th June 2013

G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 10th June 2013!

Obedient Life

As a Christian you are to be a little Jesus! In your local communities, wherever you happen to live, work, study or be! You are to live a life of obedience, of and to, Jesus Christ! For you are being transformed by the Holy Spirit who lives inside you! You are to be totally and willingly obedient to Him! Obedience, not out of some kind of slavish duty or ritual, but obedience borne from willing loving God and loving others.

Imagine

People will know you are a follower of Jesus, if you are obedient to Him, practically showing love to all! Imagine the community where you are transformed for Jesus Christ! Imagine your community filled with people seeking to know about our Jesus, because you and other Christians were sacrificing their time and possessions! Imagine the communities you are involved with wanting to give Jesus the glory and honour in every aspect of life!

Transformation

Transformed communities of people devoted to Jesus and experiencing the power of the Holy Spirit in bringing people back to God the Father! Loving God and loving each other as He commanded would help do this in your local community!

Be Obedient! Be bold! Be strong! Be courageous!

But you need to be obedient to Jesus Christ in both small and large things.

Jesus said in John 14:21 "Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them."

You will face pressure to disobey Him, even sometimes from those within your church. But if He has commanded you to do something for Him, you are to obey Him. It is far better to obey God and disappoint people than to obey people and disobey God.

Go into this week, lovingly willing to be obedient to God! Trust in Him and ask Him for the strength to be lovingly obedient to Him. He will help as you ask! It can sometimes be very difficult to be obedient to God, particularly as some people, even other Christians, will try to get you to disobey. Be strong in the Lord! Be bold! Be courageous! Need help? Then ask somebody to pray with you! Then be prepared for opportunities to be lovingly obedient to Jesus – in small and big things!

Prayer

A Prayer to help you this week.

Father, help us to live obediently to you. May the Holy Spirit encourage us as we seek to live worthily of Jesus Christ, in obedience to Him. Father, it is in His name we pray in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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Think Spot

17th June 2013

As I reflect upon the life of Jesus as given to us through the Gospels, I see that in his interaction with people he exhibits his loveliness. An example of this is found in Matthew 20:29-34

As Jesus and his disciples were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed him. Two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was going by, they shouted, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!"

The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!"

Jesus stopped and called them. "What do you want me to do for you?" he asked.

"Lord," they answered, "we want our sight."

Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.

See how Jesus exhibited his loveliness to those two men, through an act of compassion and mercy! Jesus gave those two men great joy in receiving their sight and enabled them to overcome the rejection by the crowd! Those two men could testify that Jesus is altogether lovely and lovely altogether!

Jesus is beyond compare for the things He has done and the things He will do. Jesus Christ is altogether lovely in regard to his divinity, humanity, birth, life, ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, exultation, glorification, grace, protection, tenderness, power, wisdom, vengeance, judgment, majesty, redemption and pardon! Jesus' loveliness means I can have His incomparable inner joy when I feel defeated, dejected and discouraged. Jesus oozes loveliness!

As you go into this week, remember that when you are feeling defeated, dejected or discouraged, that Jesus joy is inside you. Joy is not necessarily loud and obtrusive but also quiet and peaceful. Allow that joy of Jesus to carry you through. Let His loveliness embrace you and allow Him control over your circumstances.

A prayer to help you into this new week:

Father, we thank you for sending Jesus.

We thank you Jesus that you are altogether lovely and lovely altogether.

We thank you that you are with us when

everybody else rejects, despises, defeats or discourages us!

Amen.

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Think Spot

1st July 2013


G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 1st of July 2013.



Luke 2:42-52



Every year Jesus' parents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover.  When he was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom.  After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it.  Thinking he was in their company, they travelled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends.  When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him.  After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 
Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.  When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, "Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you."

"Why were you searching for me?" he asked. "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?"  But they did not understand what he was saying to them.

Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.  And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.



Later on in his life, this event occurred!



Matthew 13:53-55



When Jesus had finished these parables, he moved on from there. Coming to his hometown, he began teaching the people in their synagogue, and they were amazed. "Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers?" they asked.  "Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother's name Mary, and aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?

Wise

Jesus is the ultimate wise man! As we read the Gospels, we see that when Jesus spoke words, people were amazed! They were astounded that He spoke with wisdom, elegance and yet with authority. They had never heard anyone speak like He did - with both grace and authority. The same is true today, if we are listening. That is why we read the Bible to find out what He would say to us. That is why we seek to hear Him speak to us and why we speak to Him. That is why preaching is to be seen as an act of worship - by both the preacher and the listener! Jesus' wisdom meaning I can ask Him for advice and seek His imagination to solve problems!

As you go into this week ask Jesus to help you, guide and speak to you through the Bible, regardless of what situation you face! Jesus, Son of God, the ultimate wise man!

Prayer

A prayer to help you into this new week. Father, we thank you for your Son, Jesus Christ! We thank you for the Bible! We thank you for godly men and women who preach and teach this wisdom of Jesus to us, explaining and exploring how we can put this wisdom into practise! May the Holy Spirit within each believer, rebuke and counsel, as that believer seeks to live a life worthy of Jesus Christ. Amen!

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Think Spot - 8th July 2013

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G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 8th of July 2013. We have a guest today again! Welcome back Pauline as she shares some insights with you.



When we are going through a difficult time it is sometimes hard to believe that you are the apple of Gods eye.

God gave me a picture once. I asked God what I was worth. God tied a tag round my neck with a piece of string, the kind of price tag that they have in old fashioned shops. The tag read £10, then he removed the tag and replaced it with one that read £100, then he removed that one and replaced it with one that had £1000 on it.

He replaced the £1000 price tag with one that read £100,000 and then replaced that one with a million pound price tag. The final price tag simply had ONE LIFE written on it. I find it mind blowing that God chose to let His Son die a hideously painful death so that I can enjoy a personal relationship with him that I am so valuable that even if I was the only human being that existed, God would have allowed Jesus to die on a cross for me.



Remind yourself of this fact frequently and you will get a glimpse of your father's heart. He loves you to bits and is proud of you no matter what you have done in the past - if you have said sorry and meant it - it is forgotten. The slate is completely clean.

2 Corinthians 5:17 "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come."



God's love for you is unconditional. God created us with a thirst to be secure, to have self worth and to have a sense of our own significance. That thirst is intended to be quenched by God himself, by His unconditional love for us and unconditional acceptance of our work.

1 John 3:1 "How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called the children of God.! And that is what we are!"

Ephesians 2:10 "We are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepares for us in advance to do."


Unfortunately many of us try and get our security and sense of self worth from our spouses or parents. Whilst that can be okay if we have a particularly adoring spouse or an encouraging mum and dad, it goes badly wrong if we have a critical spouse or a parent that withholds praise. Our self esteem really suffers in the case of a verbally critical spouse or parent and is affected just as badly by someone who is slow to give praise.



Galatians 4:7 "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out ‘Abba, Father.' So you are no longer a slave but a son and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir."



Our aim should be to please God and fulfil his purposes for our lives. If it is we will discover a sense of security, value and significance in God and then it will not matter if our boss does not appreciate us or if our spouse criticises us.



We should be aiming to enjoy God, to have a life of worship and to get to know God better each day.
God adores us and considers us adorable. He is proud of our achievements but is so much more thrilled with our efforts to get to know Him better.

Thanks for joining us on Partakers ThinkSpot! See you again real soon!

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Think Spot

22nd July 2013

Welcome to Partakers Think Spot!

As part of our living as followers of Jesus, here is something which has the capability of affecting every person on the planet.



Jesus, our Master, said in Matthew 12:36-37 But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."

Jesus took words and thoughts extremely seriously! Jesus' words encouraged others gently towards paths of right living. He spoke words of love, kindness, rebuke, forgiveness, encouragement and blessing upon and to others! Jesus is to be our guide and Master in the use of thoughts and words.



In Matthew 5:21-22, Jesus equates calling somebody a fool with the physical act of murder! Murder has its beginning in anger developing into uncontrollable rage! Improper attitudes, words and thoughts can lead you and I to sin if we don't stop their destructive use quickly!

May the words we communicate and think about, be like those of Jesus - "full of grace". How is your WOW factor of Jesus now?

When Jesus Christ called you to follow Him, He called you to follow Him wholeheartedly and be committed to only Him. Jesus calls you and I, to love God and be totally committed to Him.

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



Father, help us this week to be totally committed to you in all aspects of our lives. May those we live with, work with and interact with, know we are your child by the words we speak. We ask this, through the mighty name of your Son, Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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Think Spot

5th August 2013



Matthew 11:25-30 - "At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do."

“All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Did you know that Jesus is strong enough and capable enough, to carry any burden that you can lay upon Him?. Jesus Christ gives a solid and sure foundation for all aspects of life, which will not fall or be destroyed. Indeed Jesus Christ will never fall or decay such is His imperishability as the everlasting God. Jesus Christ is solid, dependable and strong; nobody and nothing can stand against Him. Jesus’ strength means I can go to Him for protection and strength when I am weak and knowing He will supply my needs.

As you go into this week, at the start of the day, during the day and at the end of the day, ask Jesus to be your strength and He will be! Hand over to Him all those things which are burdening and causing you concern. God will help you through the Holy Spirit, who lives within you if you are a Christian.

God bless you this Monday and all throughout this week!

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Think Spot

12th August 2013

G'day! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot at the start of new week on Monday the 12th of August 2013.

As part of our living as followers of Jesus, here is something which has the capability of affecting every person on the planet.



Jesus, our Master, said in Matthew 12:36-37 "But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."



Jesus took words and thoughts extremely seriously! Jesus' words encouraged others gently towards paths of right living. He spoke words of love, kindness, rebuke, forgiveness, encouragement and blessing upon and to others! Jesus is to be our guide and Master in the use of thoughts and words.



In Matthew 5:21-22, Jesus equates calling somebody a fool with the physical act of murder! Murder has its beginning in anger developing into uncontrollable rage! Improper attitudes, words and thoughts can lead you and I to sin if we don't stop their destructive use quickly!

May the words we communicate and think about, be like those of Jesus - "full of grace". How is your WOW factor of Jesus now?

When Jesus Christ called you to follow Him, He called you to follow Him wholeheartedly and be committed to only Him. Jesus calls you and I, to love God and be totally committed to Him.

Here is a brief prayer to help us into the new week.



Father, help us this week to be totally committed to you in all aspects of our lives. May those we live with, work with and interact with, know we are your child by the words we speak. We ask this, through the mighty name of your Son, Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.


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Think Spot 19 August 2013

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



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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Think Spot - 26th August 2013

G'day and welcome to Partakers! We have the start of a new week! Its Monday! How and in what circumstances are you trusting God? How did Jesus Christ trust in the Father? Jesus knew that the Father was going to bring Him back to life after his death on the cross. Jesus trusted the Father in this area of His life, just as he did in all aspects of his life. How are you doing? Do you have concerns and areas of your life where you need an assurance that God the Father will help you?



Here are some simple steps which may help you maintain a trust in God.

  1. Pray, casting all anxiety on God. He cares for you because you are His personal concern (The great apostle Peter, one of Jesus' closest friends wrote this in 1 Peter 5:7 "Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.")
  2. Accept and thank God that His peace has filled that area (Another great apostle, Paul, wrote this in Philippians 4:7 "Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.")
  3. Learn to be content whatever your circumstances are, resting in God (Paul goes on in Philippians 4:11-12 "Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.")
  4. Allow the Spirit to control your mind for life and peace (and again from the pen of the apostle Paul, this time in Romans 8:6 "So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.")
  5. Trust God to fulfil your every need (Matthew records these words of Jesus in Matthew 6:32-33 "but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need." )
  6. Obey and follow God's commands to love God and love others (Jesus is recorded in Matthew 22:37-40 "You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.' The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.")
  7. Finally, be prepared to be obedient to the Father, in supplying the needs of others you meet and therefore showing you love God and other people!

One way to show you are trusting and loving God is to be the answer to the prayers of somebody else and showing that love to them! Ask God to show you, how you can help somebody else in need this week and showing your love.

Go in peace this Monday, into this week, knowing God is worthy of your trust! God will take care of you, but not always in the way you expect! Expect Him to allow circumstances and situations to arise where you are to trust Him fully! He will help you if you ask! After all, He knows you better than anybody! And don't be afraid to help somebody else because by doing that, you show you are loving and trusting in God!



Father, I pray that You would help us to trust in You and that You would supply our needs, calm our concerns and help us to love You and others more fully. 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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Monday Think Spot

20 January 2014


Good morning. Let’s turn for a moment to James chapter 5 verse 16. And let’s look at the last part of this verse. “The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.” Come and hear what I have to share about Talking to God! Also I pray for us all this week!

Regina


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Monday Think Spot

27 January 2014


Good morning! Let’s turn for a moment to 1 Peter 4:7-8. "The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. ”
Come and hear what I have to share about Love and Prayer! I also pray for us all as we enter this new week!

Regina


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Monday Think Spot

27 January 2014

Good morning!

Galatians 2:19 - “I have been crucified with Christ.”

What does this mean to you? The cross of Christ is His greatest glory because He humbled Himself by dying on the cross in our place. Therefore, God has highly exalted Him. The cross was the power that conquered Satan and sin.

As Christians we share with Christ and the cross. Christ lives in us through the Holy Spirit, and we live as one who has died with Christ. As we realize the power of Christ’s crucifixion, we live as one who has died to the world and to sin. Christ the crucified one lives in us. Jesus said to His disciples, “If any of you wants to be my followers you must put aside your selfish ambition, shoulder your cross, and follow Me.” (Mark 8:34). They had seen men carrying a cross. They knew that it meant a painful death. All His life, Christ bore His cross. The death sentence that He should die for the world.

As Christians we must bear the cross acknowledging that we are worthy of death, believing that we are crucified with Christ, and that the crucified One lives in us. Our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ (Romans 6:6). “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to His cross and crucified them there.” (Galatians 5:24). When we have accepted this life of the cross we will be able to say God forbid that "I should boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Galatians 6:14)
Allow the Holy Spirit who lives within you to teach you more about this deep spiritual truth.

And as we look at this, although all of these Scriptures say our old sinful nature are nailed to the cross with Christ that does not mean that you will not ever experience desires that may not be the same as what a Christian should desire. That doesn’t mean that you won’t ever face struggles in your life. That simply means that you have somewhere to take those desires. You have somewhere to take those struggles, and to release them. You don’t have to act upon them.

You see, when God created us, He created us with a free will to choose. We can choose how we react to those who harm us. We can choose whether to be happy or joyful. It’s our choice. It’s our choice. God desires for us to have joy, the joy in Him, the joy through Christ but we don’t always know...we don’t always understand these Scriptures.

So I pray today that God opens up these Scriptures to you in a way that you can feel freedom from the slavery of this world. Freedom from the evil inclination, the animalistic instinct that abides within all of us. You can control your thoughts. You can control your actions. It is through choice. You can have a renewed spirit, a renewed mind, a renewed body but it comes with studying God’s word, drawing into a closer relationship with Him.

And that is my desire for you today...to come into that more intimate relationship with God through Jesus who died on the cross for us. And I would like to just pray with you right now. Father, I just ask that you open up your word to teach listening this morning and bring them into a more closer relationship with you. In Jesus name I pray, amen. Thanks for listening to Partakers come back every day for something new to help you as a Christian.

God bless you and have a blessed day & week.


Regina


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Monday Think Spot

10 February 2014

One of the saddest things I hear with increasing frequency is when a Christian says they are not longer interested in going to their church and that they can find a way to worship God without the need to be with other believers one day a week. That they can find plenty of fellowship with other Christians without the need to attend their church on a Sunday. However that is against all that Jesus and the early church said and taught about being involved in a local church if you are able to. It is one of the prime ways our enemy satan gets to those who are Christian Disciples - to get them separated from their local church. Just as a lion or a wolf separate a sheep from the flock, so as to make it easier to devour.

It is also extreme selfishness to remove yourself from your local church. Selfish in that you are wanting all the benefits of being a Christian without the commitment it takes to the local church. Where better to serve others than in your local church? Where better to give to others your time, your gifts, your money than your local church? It is a hallmark of 21st century materialism to say I am leaving the church because I am not getting what I want out of it.

Now I am not saying that your church is perfect. No church is perfect just as no church is totally imperfect. But as a Christian you need to be plugged into your church. Not always to receive what you can but also to give where you can. Give & serve with your time, your gifts, your talents and with your money.

Jesus loves the church. The universal church as well as your local church. Your church, where you attend, is loved by Jesus. It is to be loved by you – warts and all. So when you are tempted to leave the church where you attend, be tempted to be more committed to it. The writer of Hebrews put it like this almost 2000 years ago: “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as in fact some are doing, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching."

If you are going to church simply for what you can get out of it, you are going to church for the wrong reason. You are to assemble with other Christians in order to encourage, serve and to love them. You cannot do that if you do not attend! Your local community is looking at the church and seeing how they love, work, serve, care and encourage each other and them! If you are not part of a church, you can’t do that with other believers in that church – your church.

One final thought is this: let us not take for granted our freedom to worship and attend our churches... Many around the world are being persecuted for their faith in Jesus and have to meet in secret to worship God and meet other Christians... ~~ Have a great week and celebrate Jesus with your church!


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Monday Think Spot

17 February 2014

Thank you for joining us today and I pray today’s word blesses you. I want to talk to you today about an urgent need, a need for prayer. A need for prayer for the many brothers and sisters in Christ who may be coming under spiritual attack for walking in the purpose that God has put in their life, walking in their calling, and for the many lost out there who can’t seem to find their light at the end of the tunnel, who can’t find their ray of hope that we know comes through Jesus Christ.


Let’s turn this morning to Luke chapter 11:8. If you keep knocking long enough he will get up and give you what you want so his reputation won’t be damaged. By intercession our faith, love, and perseverance will be aroused. How may we become more successful in prayer? In the parable of the friend at midnight Jesus teaches us that our intercession for the needy calls forth our power of prevailing prayer. Intercession is the most perfect form of prayer. It is the prayer Christ ever lives to pray on His throne. Intercession has its origin in urgent need. The friend came at midnight. He was hungry and could not buy bread. If we are to pray as we should we must open our eyes and hearts to the needs around us.


We hear of the billions of unreached people living in midnight darkness, perishing for lack of the bread of life. We hear of millions of nominal Christians, the majority almost as ignorant and indifferent as the heathen. We see millions in the church not indifferent and yet knowing little of the power of a life fed by the bread from heaven. If we believe what we profess, that God certain will help and send an answer to prayer, this ought to make intercessors of us. It should motivate us to give our lives to prayer for those around us. Let’s face the need of Christ-less souls perishing of hunger while there is bread enough to spare. And our own neighbors and friends, people entrusted to us, dying without hope, Christians around us living fruitless lives, prayer is needed.


So, I call to you today, and I ask you, will you answer the call of intercession? Will you speak up for the ones that don’t know that this hope exists? Will you speak up and speak life through prayer into the lives of all of those around you, even the ones you don’t know, and even the ones that come against you?


Prayer


My God, guard my tongue from evil, and my lips from speaking deceit. To those who curse me let my soul be silent and let my soul be like dust to everyone. Open my heart to your Torah, your Word, and then my soul will seek your commandments. As for all those who plot evil against me, quickly nullify their counsel and disrupt their plans.


May it be your will, Adonai, my God, and the God of my forefathers that human jealousy may not rise against me, nor may I be jealous of others. May I not be angry today and may I not anger you. Rescue me from the evil inclination and place in my heart submissiveness and humility.


Oh our King, and our God, cause your name to be unified in Your world, rebuild your city, lay the foundation of your house, perfect your sanctuary, gather in the scattered exiles, redeem your sheep, and make glad your congregation. Act for your name’s sake, act for your right hand’s sake, act for your word’s sake, act for your sanctity’s sake so that your loved ones may be given rest. Let your right hand save and respond to me.


May the words of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart find graceful favor before you, Adonai, my rock and redeemer, he who makes peace in his high places may he make peace among us and upon Israel, amen. May it be your will, Adonai, our God, and the God of our forefathers, that the holy temple be rebuilt speedily in our days. Grant us our portion in your word, and may we serve you there with reverence as in ancient days and years. Then the descendants of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to Adonai as in days of old and in former years. Father, place on us the call to lift others in prayer and help us to walk steadfast in that prayer of intercession. Thank you for today. Thank you for being our Father.
In Jesus name we pray!
Amen.



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Monday Think Spot

24 February 2014

The Love that Suffers


Good morning. Welcome to Think Spot with Partakers. I would just like to welcome you here to get your week started off. Let’s look at the love that suffers. We are going to turn to Ephesians 5:2. “Live a life filled with love for others, following the example of Christ, who loved you and gave himself as a sacrifice to take away your sin.”

It is strange that love, which is the source of the greatest happiness, should also be the cause of the most intense suffering. Suffering always follows when love seeks to save the object of its love. It is only by suffering that love can gain its end and so attain the highest happiness.

Even the almighty power of God’s love could not achieve its purpose without suffering. By suffering, Christ bore the sins of the whole world, Love in the midst of suffering manifested the greatest glory and attained its end perfectly.

Love worthy of the name manifests itself in a life of continual self-sacrifice. Love gives strength to endure, whatever the circumstances. Loving others may mean tears, heartache, and much persevering in prayer; but love overcomes all obstacles.

Do you long to know the love of Christ in all its fullness? Then yield yourself to Him. Think of yourself as a channel through which the highest love can reach its aim. Begin to suffer with and intercede for those around you. Eventually you will realize what this life of love is: to live wholly for the welfare and happiness of others.

And maybe the best way I can describe the love that suffers is as the love of a parent. The parent loves their children unconditionally, no matter what. There is nothing that the child can do that would cause the parent not to love them. Sure, some of the choices that they make break our hearts. We don’t want them to make the same mistakes we made. But yet we have to realize that they are individuals and that they will make choices and those choices will not always be what we hope for them. But, they will learn through those mistakes. Scripture tells us to train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it. So, that’s what we do; we love and we guide them while allowing them to make their mistakes. That is love.

The same can be said for the grown child who is now the caretaker of their parent. Our parents, once they reach a certain stage, may not always be able to make the choices about what’s best for them concerning their finances and concerning their healthcare; but we still need to allow them to make choices as much as possible. God gives us all that right, the right to choose. He wants us to choose to love Him. And so we need to honor our parents with that choice and let them be a part of their healthcare as much as possible. And as you are taking care of your parent, also take care of yourself because that is the only way you can truly take care of your parent. Accept help from others when they offer it. And when someone comes to visit take a walk outside or take 5 minutes to write in your journal, just a way to find that release, clear your mind, and to help you keep going. Make sure you still get your alone time with God because this is very important where your growth comes in.

I pray that something that has been said here today blesses you and encourages you throughout your week. And so now I would like to close this in prayer.

Prayer

Father, I thank you for allowing these listeners to be with us this morning. And I pray that the message that was brought this morning brings them peace, brings them comfort, and encouragement. I pray it speaks life into their soul. And Father, I just ask you to keep your hand upon them, to clearly guide them and allow them to clearly understand your will for their lives. I ask you to place a hedge of protection around each one this week, Father. May no plots of the enemy come against them, may the enemy be caught in his own snare. And I just ask you to bless each one of them. I thank you for the blessings you have already given, and for the blessings yet to come. In Jesus name I pray and ask these things. Amen.

Thank you for joining us here on Partakers Think Spot. Come back every day for a bit of helpful encouragement to get you throughout your week.


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Monday Think Spot

3 March  2014

Stone Walls Give Way

Good morning! Welcome to Partakers Think Spot. Thank you for joining us. I am Regina from South Carolina in the United States. Let's talk this morning about stone walls giving way. We are going to read Acts 12:5 "But while Peter was in prison, the church prayed very earnestly for him."

When we pray consistently we will receive an entrance into God's will of which we would otherwise know nothing. We will receive blessing above all we ask or think. The teaching and power of the Holy Spirit are unalterably linked to prayer. The power that the Church's prayer has is shown not only as the apostles pray but also as the Christian community does.

In Acts 12 Peter is in prison awaiting execution. The death of James had aroused the Church to a sense of great danger; the thought of losing Peter, too, wakened all their energies. They went to prayer. Prayer was effective; Peter was delivered. When he came to the house of Mary he found "many were gathered for prayer" (Acts 12:12). Double chains, soldiers, and the iron gate - all gave way before the power from heaven that prayer brought to his rescue. The power of the Roman Empire was nothing in the presence of the power that the Church wielded in prayer. Those Christians stood in close and living relationship with their Lord. They knew well that the words, "I have been given complete authority" and "And be sure of this, I am with you always" were absolutely true. They had faith in His promise to hear them whatever they asked. They prayed in the assurance that the powers of heaven bot only could work on earth but that would work at the Church's request on its behalf.

The same is true today. Just as the church, the community, prayed for Peter that day, and he was released from prison miraculously by God, we, too, can see those miracles. God's word says that He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He doesn't change. So, we can come together for communal prayer, or we can pray alone at home, either way as long as we're in prayer we're communicating with God. When we're seeking His will, He will let us know what that will is. He will lead us in that will. And we can see Him at work. We can see Him at work in many lives.

My father in law's life is one of those that we have recently seen. He recently had open heart surgery, had an aortic valve replacement done, a triple by-pass, and had a stroke while he was having surgery. So he can no longer live alone. He had someone staying with him that we just weren't sure about and we wanted to talk to my father in law about it but we did not want to offend him or make him feel that he couldn't make decisions when, obviously, he can. So, I went to prayer. I prayed. I have a prayer group that I am with that I asked to pray, and we all sought God's will. I never had to open my mouth to my father in law concerning this because God took care of it. God had someone else that was helping my father in law speak to him about getting a power of attorney, which brought him protections. My father in law heeded their advice. He did set up a power of attorney which protects him from some dangers that we were concerned about. God answered that prayer, those prayers, my prayer, the prayer of the group that I had praying. And he'll do the same for you if we just seek His will and come to Him with a pure heart, a heart for His will to be done. He will answer those prayers.

I just want to close now. I thank you for being with us here on Partakers and I hope that you will come back every day for a word of encouragement. I pray that you have a blessed week. Let's close in prayer: Father, I thank you for each listener this morning. I ask you to pour down a double blessing upon each of them, Father. Allow them to see your will at work. Encourage them through their prayer and communication with you, Lord. Thank you. Thank you for each one because I truly believe that each one that is listening this morning is here by divine appointment, by your will for this message, Father. I just ask you to hold them close, protect them, heal their bodies of sickness, heal their finances that may be lacking, and provide them with every need that they may have. In Jesus name I pray and ask these things. I thank you for the blessings that you have already provided, I thank you for the blessings yet to come. Amen.

Thank you for joining us here on Partakers Think Spot. Come back every day for a bit of helpful encouragement to get you throughout your week.



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Monday Think Spot

10 March 2014

Pray and Prevail

Welcome to Partakers Think Spot. I pray this Monday morning finds you doing well. I am Regina and I am from SC in the United States. I want to talk with you this morning about Praying and Prevailing!

Let's turn for a moment to James 5:16. The earnest prayer of righteous person has great power and wonderful results. When Israel had made the golden calf Moses returned to the LORD and said, "Alas, these people have committed a terrible sin, but now please forgive them, forgive their sin, and if not, then blot me out of the record You are keeping. That can be found in Exodus 32 verses 31-32. That was persistence.

Moses would rather have died than not have his people forgiven. When God had heard him and said he would send an angel with the people, Moses came again. He would not be content, until, in answer to his prayer, God himself should go with them. God had said, "I will indeed do what you have asked." Exodus 33:17 After that, in answer to Moses' prayer, "Let me see your glorious presence,"Exodus 33:18, God made his goodness pass before him. Then Moses at once began pleading,"O, Lord, then please go with us." Exodus 34:9. Moses was up on that mountain with the Lord for 40 days and 40 nights. That's found in Exodus 34:28. Moses was persistent with God and he prevailed. He proves that the person who truly lives near God shares in the same power of intercession which there is in Jesus.

James teaches us to pray for each other. "The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results. Praise God! He still waits for us to seek him! Faith in a prayer-hearing God will make a prayer-loving Christian. And you know, you may be lacking in confidence right now and you may be saying to yourself, "Why would God want to help me? Why would he want to do what I am asking?"

Well, you know what? That dream or that vision, that persistence that you feel gnawing at you saying, "I have to do this! I have to do this, but I don't know how." Don't let the "but I don't know how" stop you! Because God gave you that vision, that came from him! And he tells us in Jeremiah 29:11-14, "For I know the plans that I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me, when you search for me with all of your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord, "and I will restore your fortunes and will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I driven you," declares the Lord, "and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you into exile."

Life may have been hard for you up until this point. You know, you may just be in survival mode, just barely making it from day to day. That's NOT God's plan for you and do not accept the conditioning of the world that tells you there's no better. Because God has a better plan for you. He tells us that in Jeremiah. He has a plan which offers you a future and a hope. So persistently pray to him. Moses spent 40 days and 40 nights on that mountain before God. And God heard him and God answered his prayer. He'll do the same for you!

Let's close now in prayer this morning:

Father, I thank you for each listener that come out to be with us this morning. I pray that this word pushed into them a light, a light where darkness has been prevailing for a while. I hope it just lit up their whole world. I pray that it encouraged them, that it allowed them to grasp hold to that promise you made in Jeremiah 29 that said you have a plan for us, and that plan is a good plan which brings us a future and a hope. Father I thank you for the blessings that you have already given us. I thank you that we are surviving, that we have food, that we have clothing, that we are not cold in these frigid temperatures. And I thank you for the blessings which are yet to come. In Jesus name I pray and ask these things, amen. Thank you all for being with us today. I pray you will come back each day for a word of encouragement from everyone who participates in Partakers Think Spot. You can also find Partakers on the web. Just do a Google search for Partakers Ministry and you will find us and we look forward to meeting with you again tomorrow morning. God bless you!

Editor note: that plan involves the time after you die and you go to be with God in glory! WOW! That will be amazing! If you don't have that assurance, please do contact us and we will help you out and show you all about an amazing future with Jesus Christ! Don't delay! Contact us today!

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Monday Think Spot

24 March 2014

Experience The Blessings

Good Morning! Welcome to Partaker’s Think Spot! I am Regina. I will be your host for today and I am from South Carolina in the United States. I would like to bring you a warm, humble welcome and thank you for being with us.

Receiving from God in faith the answer with perfect assurance that it has been given, is not necessarily the possession of the gift we have asked for. At times there may be a long interval before we have it physically. In other cases we may enjoy at once what we have received. When the interval is long we have need of faith and patience. We need faith to rejoice in the assurance of the answer bestowed and to begin to act upon that answer though for the present there is no visible proof of its presence. We can apply this principle to our prayer for the power to be faithful intercessors. Hold fast to the divine assurance that as surely as we believe, we receive. Rejoice in the certainty of an answered prayer. The more we praise God for it, the sooner will the experience come. We may begin at once to pray for others and the confidence grace will be given to us to pray with more perseverance and more faith than we have done before. If we do not find an immediate increase in our desire to pray, this must not discourage us. We have accepted a spiritual gift by faith; in that faith we are to pray, doubting nothing. We may count upon the Holy Spirit to pray in us, even though it is with groanings which cannot find expression. In due time we shall become conscious of His presence and power.

Wow, what a message! We continue to pray even though we may not see it, we may not know the length of time that it is going to take for us to receive it, but we pray, we consistently pray, we persevere and we believe; and we go ahead and thank God for it. "Thank you, Father for the blessings that you are giving us! Right now, thank you for answering our prayer!"

And you know, He is going to answer it! Remember there are creation power in your thoughts and your words! So, don’t allow that doubt to creep in. Don’t allow it to steal your blessing, to steal your gift from God, to steal your abundant life. When that inner mean voice starts talking to you and trying to put doubt in your head just tell it to go away that you are only listening to the Holy Spirit. Pray and ask God to quiet that inner mean voice and to let his Holy Spirit speak more loudly to you, more clearly to you than you have ever heard before. He will do that. He will allow you to hear Him, to know He is there with you.

I pray that as you move forward this week that you are blessed. I pray that you pray often, if not for yourself then for others but also include yourself. I pray that you have a week of peace, a week of solitude with God, just one on one time with Him. Maybe you can’t do it for the whole week, every second of every day, but you can have your quiet time with Him in the morning or the evening or whenever you do it. Take that time and as you pray, don’t forget to be quiet and listen and allow Him to speak to you during that time. Let’s close now in prayer.

Prayer

Father, I thank you for each one that has come out to be with us this morning, that’s turned us on on their computers. That’s taken the time to receive this word. And I just ask you to bless them in an abundant way. Allow them to feel your presence. Allow them to hear your voice and know without a doubt that it is you speaking to them. I ask you to bring clarity of mind, Lord, and to unplug their ears so that they are able to hear you clearly. I ask you to prompt them and encourage them to pray for others for that is what we are called to do and that is one way that we can love our neighbor as ourself is to pray for them. In Jesus name I pray and ask these things. Amen.

Thank you for joining Partaker’s Think Spot. If you have Twitter, Facebook, Google+, any of the social media share us with them as well. Until next time, this is Regina, have a blessed week!

I pray that you will come back tomorrow and each day this week, and be blessed by the wonderful words that are brought to you. Have a good week.


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Monday Think Spot

31 March 2014

A Heart Of Service

Good morning! Welcome to Partaker’s Think Spot. I am Regina from South Carolina in the United States. It is my honor and privilege to be here with you this morning. I thank you for taking your time to be with us.



Do you have service in your heart? Do you have a heart of service? When someone mentions serving another what emotion does the question evoke in you? Did you realize that service is found 132 times in 116 verses in the KJV Bible? And the word “servant” is found 491 times in 452 verses in the KJV.

Today I want to focus on just one of those many verses.



Mark 9:35 And he sat down and called the twelve, and said unto them, if man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.



With the words “servant” and “service” being found so frequently in Scripture it has to make us realize that this is something that is very important to God. During creation week when He created man, He created Adam, before He created Adam, with each thing that He created He said, “It is good. It is good.” But when He created Adam, although it was good that He created Adam, He said. “It is not good for man to be alone.”

So, that tells us right there that we have to have connections with other people. Our health tells us that we have to have connections with other people. Some of the most depressed people are shut-ins who can’t get out to be with other people, who have limited interaction with other people. And so, it is important for us to not just be self-serving but to be serving to others.



I am reading a book, “Thou Shall Prosper” by Rabbi Daniel Lapin, and he has so much wisdom in this book that it is just profound, and I would like to make a couple of quotes from this book, if I may. One is, “If you cannot wrap yourself around the notion that other humans are worthy of your committed service and that you are not diminished but are instead elevated by providing that service, you will never excel at what you do. There is nothing shameful in being a servant or a people who serve.

Only humans worship God and only humans serve their fellow humans. Not out of blind animal instinct but out of love, altruism, and a commitment to an idea just like those firefighters on September 11, 2001. Giving of one’s self to another is at the core of what it means to be human.” And it’s at the core of everything you do; your quest for career success, your quest for ministerial success is all the core of giving service to another!



As I close this morning, I would just like to ask you, where do you stand with serving others? Do you have a lot of friends? Do you offer your services to them? Maybe you’re in business and you provide a service for your customers. Or you’re in a church that you do some work for...there are a lot of avenues that we can serve others, even telephone ministry is providing service to another. It’s giving them a call letting them know that you are thinking about them. For some it’s easy, they just have a servant’s heart so it’s easy for them to give of themselves to another. For others it’s not so easy. But it’s something that we work for because we know that it is something that delights God.

Prayer


Let’s bow our heads: Father I thank you for the message that you have provided this morning. I thank you for explaining to us the importance of being a servant. I thank you that we have the opportunity to serve someone else. I pray that we count it as a privilege and an honor and that we realize that it brings glory and honor to you.

Father, when we have a difficult time serving someone or when we just don’t feel like we are in the mood to do it that day, I just pray the Holy Spirit comes and speaks to us and gently nudges us and that we continue in that servant’s walk that You have brought us to. I thank you for each one that is listening this morning because that means that they chose to set aside some time to hear your word. And I pray that this word encourages them and if they haven’t been serving others, if they just felt like they were too busy then I pray that they will find time, 5 minutes here or there, 10 minutes here or there; whatever it takes; whatever You desire for them to do, Lord, impress it upon them. May Your will be done.

I ask that you bless each one this week, bless them abundantly and may they have an abundant life, an abundant life which serves others. Father, I just thank you. I just come to you with a heart of gratitude for this opportunity, for being a part of Partakers.

And I ask you to bless Brother Dave as he puts all of this together and he encourages each of us along. I just thank you, Lord. I thank you for the tremendous blessings for the doors you are opening for this ministry. I just pray that the harvest comes in for you. That you are blessed through all of this. And father, I just ask you now to hear our prayers and answer our prayers so that all may know that YOU ARE GOD.

And I ask you now, father, to just love on us, just love on us a little bit more. Blessed are you, Adonai, God who hears and answers our prayers. Blessed are you, Adonai, who gives us the opportunity to serve others and serve you. Blessed are you, Adonai, God who provides for all of us. Amen.

Thank you for being with us today. I pray that you will come back each day this week and be blessed by a new message and may this help carry you through your week. Make your week much more meaningful, much more successful, and help you to be a blessing to others in the process. Thank you again. Good bye.

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Monday Think Spot

7 April 2014

Blessings of the Christian


G’day! Welcome to Partakers Monday Think Spot!

In Romans 5:1-11, Paul elucidates 8 blessings for those who would call themselves Christian – those who have taken up God’s free offer of salvation and are justified by faith in and through Jesus Christ alone!

Here are those 8 blessings:

  1. We have peace with God.
  2. We have access into God’s grace.
  3. We have a glorious hope.
  4. We develop Godly character.
  5. We have God's love.
  6. We have the God the Holy Spirit living within us.
  7. We have salvation from God’s future wrath.
  8. We have reconciliation with God!

What are we to do with these blessings?

We can remember them as we engage in spiritual warfare & overcoming temptation by our old nature, by the world and by satan. When we are faced with these, we remember the blessings we have because we are in a relationship with God. Nothing can separate us from the love of God, despite what the world says, despite what satan whispers to us. We, if we are Christians, are fully justified by Almighty God.

We are to take great joy in our God! That doesn’t mean we go around with a big silly grin on our faces at all times! Joy is that inner confidence of knowing that you are God’s treasured possession and He is yours. When somebody we know who is a Christian is not feeling the joy, we as a body are to help encourage and build up that person. Not to stomp on them as we often do. The strongest amongst us is to help the weakest amongst us. That is an act of worship.

As God’s people here, we should be making a positive impact for God in our communities. People should be able to see why we Christians are different and want to join us. Being assured of God’s love should inspire us to reflect that love to all those we come into contact with, exhibiting our transformed character before a watching world. Being assured of God’s love for us should spur us on to tell others about this wonder! When was the last time you told somebody?

Here in Romans 5, Paul uses the words “we”, “our” and “us”, and not the words “I” or “you”. Whereas in the earlier chapters he has mixed them up! This reflects the unity of the church! Each person makes an individual commitment to God but then is drawn into the wider group of all Christians! Each person is loved by God, and if you have taken up that salvation offer from God, then you are in a relationship with other people who have done likewise. Whether you want to be or not! Those outside the church are watching to see how we act towards each other. Do they see Christians being over generous, reflecting an abundantly generous God. A God who gave all He had to those who were undeserving? Or do we exhibit our love only to those whom we respect esteem and think deserve our generosity, hiding under the banner of “good stewardship”? When God loves, He gives generously to those who are undeserving... Jesus always had time for the outcast of his society. That is grace...

When we as Christians give anything - money, possessions, wisdom, time - we are to emulate that love - giving generously even to those who we think are undeserving. And we all neglect to give to people who we think don't deserve it! How is your giving and loving? What do you need to change? As a Christian you are blessed! When undergoing hard times, reflect on those 8 blessings from Romans 5 and remember who you are because of Jesus Christ! Go into this week knowing who you are in God because of Jesus Christ and the work He has completed for you.

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Monday Think Spot

14 April 2014

Filled With The Spirit

Ephesians 5:18-19 “Let the Holy Spirit fill and control you. Then you will sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, making music to the Lord in your hearts.”


Now we might think of being filled with Holy Spirit as a one time occurrence, I grew up Pentecostal so in doing so it was more than a one time occurrence, because you know one thing the Pentecostals have is the Spirit. Even more than that, in our every day walk Christ is in us, Holy Spirit is there. He’s our comforter. Christ said that He had to leave so that the comforter could come. And as I bring this message to you this morning, I just want to share with you that our comforter is with us, ever present and we just have to lean into Him.

This past week was a very hard week for me as the son of some friends of mine was murdered last weekend. So I spent a lot of time grieving this weekend and last week but in this grief, it was a time for me to withdraw. Normally I am very socially active on Facebook and other social media and everything. I have several prayer groups that I am a part of and a few other communities that I am a part of; but I retreated. I wasn’t online as much but in doing so, it did cause some people to worry about me and I apologize for that worry, but this was a time that I needed to cry out to Holy Spirit to comfort me, to bring a message to me and to bring peace to me. And in my retreat that is what I did.

I stayed in the Word, and I just cried out to God to send that comforter to me. I listened to praise and worship music, things that would soothe my soul. In doing so, I have come to the other side. I’m not completely through the grieving process because grief does come as a process, just like forgiveness. It is multifaceted and it is a journey.

But I did not become stuck in this journey. I’m not stuck in the mud. It’s very easy when we lose something whether it’s a job, a family member, or a pet to become stuck in that grief. But as we take action then we can continue to move through it.

That is what I want to talk with you about: The action that I took was going into prayer, staying in my prayer closet. I could not do things as ordinary. I had to be a little different; I had to take a different stance in order to bring comfort and healing to my soul. I had to welcome Holy Spirit to do His work there.

There may be many of you out there this morning that are facing loss; again, loss covers a multitude of things. Typically when we think of grief we only think of losing a loved one but you know grief...my father in law is experiencing grief because he had a stroke last October. Before his stroke he was very independent now he has to rely on others a lot more than he ever did. But he has come a long way. He can do some things for himself. But where he’s not a hundred percent independent any more, that is a loss that he has suffered and he is experiencing grief and I am trying to help him through that; to help him realize that each time he does therapy he is taking action to heal in that grief and to recover from that grief.

When we think of grief, a lot of times people will say, “Give it time, it will get better. Time heals.” I’m sorry you all, I’m going to be honest, time does not heal anything. It just doesn’t! Not sure about that? Walk outside, if your tire is flat, pull up a chair and sit down beside that flat tire and wait on time to put air back in that tire. Time is not going to do that. It’s not going to replace the air in your tire. That is an action YOU have to take in order to continue your journey and grief works in much the same way. We have to take action. For me it is going to prayer, going for a walk, making myself eat because I don’t find comfort in food. I tend to do the opposite of a lot of other people and where a lot of people turn to food, I turn away from it. So, just the little steps of preparing a salad, things like that are things that move us or progress us further into the journey so that we can come out victorious on the other side. And we don’t have to do it alone because Holy Spirit is right there doing it with us.

So let’s close in prayer this morning. Father I thank you that Jesus died on the cross for us. I thank you that He told the disciples, “It is expedient for Me to go so that the comforter can come.” And I thank you that Holy Spirit does come and pray for us when we are too bogged down to even have words to pray, that He brings us comfort and that He brings us peace in these trying times. I thank you for this, I thank you for your love for us because it is your love for us that prepared this for us.

And I thank you, Father, for the opportunity to be connected with Partakers, with each ministry that is taking place there, with their prayer team. I thank you for each listener that comes every Monday morning to hear Think Spot, and each day throughout the week for the other messages. I just thank you, Father, for the divine appointments that You have put together here, for the way that you are using the internet to reach others and I just ask you to bless each listener abundantly. Rain your peace upon them, send the comforter to them and guide them down the journeys that they face this week. I ask you to place a hedge of protection around each one.

Blessed are You, Adonai, God our provider, God of peace, God of comfort, God of love. In Jesus name I pray, amen. Thank you for joining me today. I pray that you will come back tomorrow and the next day and the next day and be blessed with each message that is brought to you this with. And with that being said, may God rain his blessings and favor on you this week. Good day mates!

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