Revolution Starts in the Heart By Bobby Schuller

Originally posted here: http://hourofpower.org/revolution-starts-in-the-heart/

“‘What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?’ Pilate asked. They all answered, ‘Crucify him!’ ‘ Why? What crime has he committed?’ asked Pilate. But they shouted all the louder, ‘Crucify him!’”

– Matthew 27:22,23

When I look at the story of the events leading up to Jesus’ crucifixion, one of the things that strikes me most poignantly is how, once the people discovered that He was not the political revolutionary they thought He was, they turned on Him. The crowds that just a while earlier had been shouting, “Hosanna, blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord!” were now screaming, “Crucify Him and give us Barabbas!” Why did they want a criminal instead of the Son of Man? Because Barabbas was a rebel who had already led a fight against the Romans. The people knew what they were looking for and Jesus was not it. Unfortunately, they missed the huge blessing that was right in front of them because they weren’t willing to consider that the Messiah was on a mission to save hearts rather than conquer nations. It’s human nature to want God to change everything except us, but the truth is that revolution always starts in individual hearts!

Friend, I urge you to remember that Jesus is much more interested in changing you than He is in changing your circumstances. Rather than asking Him to change your husband, your wife, your kids, your boss, or your living situation, ask Him to transform you first. In every challenge you face, the Lord wants to craft you into a person who looks and reacts like Him. The more of yourself you willingly surrender, the more of you He can fill with the power of His Spirit — the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. God’s Hand is outstretched and He is inviting you to entrust everything to Him, so take a chance, lay aside your own desires, and make Him the King of your heart today!

Prayer
Jesus, I ask you to change me from the inside out. Though my circumstances are challenging, use them to make me more like you.

Reflection
Today, what difficult circumstance can you surrender and ask the Lord to use to make you more like Him?

Wednesday, Sixth Week of Easter

Heaven and earth are full of your glory.

We ask to “be worthy to rejoice at his coming.”
In Athens, Paul receives a cold reception when he speaks of Jesus’ resurrection.
Jesus promises that the Holy Spirit is a spirit of truth and will guide us,
leading us “to all truth.”
As we reflect today, we can ask for the grace to trust in
the guidance of the Holy Spirit for our lives.
Jesus said to his disciples:

“I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth.” John 16

From Mary we learn to trust even when all hope seems to be gone.
~ St. John Paul II

Three Things Every Mom Should Know By {Lysa TerKeurst}

Three Things Every Mom Should Know
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.” Ephesians 6:10 (NIV)

Being a mom is a high honor and one of the most precious gifts of my life. At the same time, being a mom is tough.

It’s tough when your children are tiny. And there are still tough days when you’re like me, and your children are all grown.

One of the hardest things about motherhood for me has always been my tendency to blame myself for the wrong choices my kids have made.

The second hardest thing is trying to figure out the right way to help them navigate their issues. Especially when you’re hyperaware that the situation your child is in carries great consequences.

Deep is the sorrow of a mother who feels helpless.

Thankfully, God knows what it’s like to deal with wayward children. He feels our pain. He knows our sorrow. And He knows exactly how to encourage us through His Word.

Ephesians 6:10-12 tells us: “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (NIV)

Based on this truth, here are three things mamas should know:

1. God does not call us to find a power within ourselves to overcome the issues we face with our kids.

He calls us to put on His armor because what we are facing is a battle of epic proportions. And His weapons aren’t silly little spiritual suggestions that might or might not work. His weapons are certain.

His belt of truth. I must park my runaway mind in the assurance of God’s love for me and my child.

His breastplate of righteousness. I must stop reacting in the flesh and choose to battle this with my praises and prayers.

His gospel of peace. I must walk in the assurance and peace that even when I can’t see things changing, God is working on my child’s behalf.

His shield of faith. I must have faith in God’s timing and His ways.

His helmet of salvation. I must trust God’s ultimate desire for my children is for them to have a close relationship with Him. Though a situation might seem like an unlikely part of this process, God will bring good out of it.

His sword, which is the Bible. I must read God’s love letter to me every day. And hold those truths as the lifeline between God’s security and my shaky heart.

His gift of prayer. I must see prayer not as a last resort but as the very thing God’s most courageous warriors turn to first.

Ephesians 6:13-18 assures us that with these in place, we’ll be able to stand as we use them to tap into a power beyond ourselves.

2. The battle isn’t against our child and their choices.

It often feels like the battle is against our child. In reality, the battle is against Satan’s schemes.

There will be some battles we face with our kids that seem impossible to win because Satan twists the truth. He hides consequences. He blinds reality. He has schemes perfectly designed with our weaknesses in mind.

Therefore, we have to battle Satan. He’s the real enemy here. And because we are Jesus girls, we hold the power for victory in our praises and prayers to God.

3. The battle is taking place in the heavenly realms.

Oh how I want to fight my kids’ battles with what I can see. But that simply isn’t enough.

So, I must fight with the only thing I have that can reach into the heavenly realm: my praise and prayers. Praise for who God is and prayers for Him to remove Satan’s influence in a situation.

If ever I’m tempted to doubt how powerful praise and prayers are in battle, a quick read of 2 Chronicles 20:1-27 soothes this mama’s heart. It’s an amazing story of God’s people feeling overwhelmed in the face of a vast army, but when they begin to sing and praise the Lord, their enemy is defeated.

Prayers to God and praises for God release the power of God.

What bridged the gap between them feeling powerless and experiencing victory were praises and prayers. And it’s the same for us.

I can’t fully explain it. But I can proclaim it. Our prayers and our praises are powerful and effective.

Yes, being a mom is tough, but we aren’t alone. God understands this struggle of parenting children who get off track.

And since God, the perfect parent, has dealt with this since the beginning of time — I think His is the best advice around.

Father God, thank You so much that You have perfectly equipped me to do battle for my children. Today I lift my prayers and my praises up to You, believing for a mighty victory in their lives. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Today’s Word with Joel & Victoria Osteen Ministries

Today’s Scripture
“Careful planning puts you ahead in the long run; hurry and scurry puts you further behind.”
(Proverbs 21:5, MSG)

The Way To Get Ahead
It’s amazing how taking a few minutes at the start of each day to plan and set your thoughts in the right direction can help you get ahead and empower you to accomplish so much more. But too often, people get so caught up in the activity of life that they tend to just “go with the flow” instead. I’m not saying we shouldn’t be flexible, but when it comes to your life, you should be the one setting the flow. Of course, unexpected things happen. Our days won’t always go according to plan, but if you’ll take time each day to set your heart and mind in the right direction, you’ll be equipped for whatever comes your way!

Today I encourage you to make plans to start your day right and set your thoughts in the right direction. Say something such as “This is going to be a great day. God is guiding and directing my steps. His favor is surrounding me.” Put God first place. Let Him guide you and order your steps. Even if it’s just five minutes a day, make spending time with Him a habit. Plan your day with Him because careful planning is the way to get ahead.

A Prayer for Today
“God, my plate is full. I spend much of my time running, serving, doing. Remind me that it is OK to slow down and enjoy a quiet moment with You. Refresh my spirit and help me to live a balanced life with You at the top of my To-Do list. In Jesus’ name – Amen.”

No Sting in Death! By Bobby Schuller

Originally posted here: http://hourofpower.org/no-sting-in-death/

“For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.”

– 2 Corinthians 5:1

There is a lot of good news that comes from being a believer! If you put on Christ and are baptized into His life, besides partaking of His goodness here on earth, when you die, you won’t have to taste death. You see, for the Christian, death is more liking waking up than it is falling asleep; this is one of the most profound gifts of living in the Kingdom of God.

Among the most potentially debilitating (albeit sometimes subconscious) fears in this life is that of death. There is a nagging and underlying anxiety about what happens after we die that potentially drives a lot of bad decisions and even much of the brokenness and sin in our lives. However, when we are saved, we receive something precious from the Lord — a calm and confident assurance of Heaven. I once had a friend and personal trainer who I kept inviting to come to church, but his response to me was, “If I came to church, my horns would get caught in the door.” Unfortunately, this is what too many people think when they contemplate surrendering their life to the Lord. They believe that the things they say, do, or have done disqualify them from the Kingdom of God, and this breeds an even greater fear of death!

Friend, as Augustine said, “There is no saint without a past, and no sinner without a future.” This is the Good News of the Gospel! No matter what mess-up, sin, failure, or habit seems to hold you back in this life, you are not disqualified from your Heavenly inheritance. You can relax and know that when the moment of your last breath comes, you will enter the presence of your friend Jesus, and He will take your hand in His and welcome you home. As you choose to embrace the work He finished through His death and resurrection, your mind, body, and spirit are released from the gripping fear of your own mortality and you are free to soar! Isn’t that wonderful news?

Prayer
I am thankful, Jesus, that you have removed the sting of death and set me free from the otherwise debilitating reality of my own mortality.

Reflection
Do you fear death? If so, how does knowing the Good News of Jesus help you?

Tuesday, Sixth Week of Easter

John 16.5-11

When Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father, he said to the disciples: “Now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts.

“Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because they do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer; about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.”

Grant, almighty and merciful God,
that we may in truth receive a share
in the Resurrection of Christ your Son.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Words Can Form With Expression

My Joyous Feature

Words can carry something. In that genuine life words can flow beyond so many things. Empowering those pure feelings. More like words shall speak out its total differences.

Lyrics from any song has that meaning. Cherishing some words in a mindful manner. Words from a song can take on that perfect impact. Kind of like in a poetic way. Also words from a song can be feel a lot more like a story.

Inside a story words can be made with some characteristics. Also a story with some true words in it can put that expression all over. Every story has words inside. Getting them through pure sense. Feeling like a personality trait can be form around.

Poetry can carry out a lot of sense with words. Getting that perfect feeling and expression with so many words. When someone reads or write poetry, it can bring something out into that…

View original post 47 more words

Today’s Word with Joel & Victoria Osteen Ministries

Today’s Scripture
“He has declared that he will set you in praise, fame and honor high…”
(Deuteronomy 26:19, NIV)

Sowing Honor
All throughout Scripture, we see that God blesses an attitude of honor. In Exodus, it says that when we honor our parents, we are promised long life. In Proverbs, when we pursue righteousness, we will find life, prosperity and honor. To show honor simply means that you give respect and recognition. There are many ways to show honor to others with your attitude, actions and words. I believe that as we humble ourselves and give honor, we will reap a harvest of honor in our lives in return.

A Prayer for Today
“Heavenly Father, thank you for giving your peace, protection and provision for those who are in our armed forces and their families.  Bring us into a world of peace, an end to arms, and an end of war.  In Jesus name, amen.”

A Different Route By Bobby Schuller

Originally posted here: http://hourofpower.org/a-different-route/

“Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. ‘It is written,’ he said to them, ‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.’ The blind and the lame came to him at the temple, and he healed them.’”

– Matthew 21:12-14
Have you ever been to Disneyland? If so, you may have noticed the huge crowds that line up around the time of a parade. This is because people know where the action is going to be and they try to find a place along the route the will enable them to see it most clearly. Now, picture the parade starting and one of the floats randomly veering off toward Toontown instead of taking the expected course. What would you be thinking? No doubt you would immediately feel that something went wrong. Similarly, this was the case when Jesus took an unexpected route as He entered Jerusalem riding a donkey on that historic day during Passover. The crowds assembled expected the Son of Man to go directly to the Antonia Fortress, which was the part of the temple where the Roman garrison was housed. It was full of archers and javelin throwers who were ready to launch at any time if the masses got out of hand. It’s also where the Roman governor Pontius Pilate was; in essence, it was the center of Roman authority in the city.

That said, as Jesus cut through the crowds, the people must have been shocked when, rather than going to Caesar, He went to the temple courts. Instead of confronting the governing authorities and starting a political revolt, He turned over tables in His House, called out religious corruption, and then began to heal the masses. What an unexpected turn of events the Messiah initiated and what a statement it made about the priorities of existence in His Kingdom!

Friend, your body is a temple and your Savior made Himself at home there when you received His gift of salvation. He is much more concerned with your inner life than He is your outer. Your success is not measured by your conquests of fame and fortune or by how perfect you are in the eyes of religion, but simply by completing what He has called you to do. I encourage you to let Him turn over the tables of your heart and bring healing to the areas of your life that keep you from fully and passionately pursuing your calling. Don’t be afraid to take a route that’s different from what the world expects, even if it means disappointing your friends and family. Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus, let Him be your guide, and you will be taken care of, empowered, and blessed!

Prayer
Jesus, I want you to be the Lord of my life. Turn over tables in my heart and heal me from the inside out so I can passionately pursue my calling.

Reflection
How does the route Jesus has called you to travel look different from what you expected? How has He changed your heart on the journey?

Monday, Sixth Week of Easter

The Lord takes delight in his people.

In our prayer, we ask for the “fruit produced by the paschal observance,” the fruit which comes from our reflection on this Easter season.
Paul arrives at Philippi and his message is received by Lydia and her husband. We ask for the grace to remain open to hearing God’s Word to us and that we might respond generously.
Jesus continues to tell his disciples and us that he will send us an Advocate, the Holy Spirit, the Gatherer, who will testify – give witness – to Jesus for us, so that we can give witness to Jesus for others.
He tells us this so that we won’t become deterred in our mission by the ultimate rejection we will encounter in our world for witnessing to him. We can ask for the courage, strength and trust we need.

The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord,
and you also will testify. John 15
http://onlineministries.creighton.edu

 

Feast of St. Augustine of Canterbury
Holy Father,
You have given us in St. Augustine of Canterbury, a great witness of Christian faith, grant through his intercession a renewed Christian unity among people of all Christian communities
and in a particular way bless the relationship between the Anglican Church and Roman Catholic Church.
Grant this through our one Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Jared Dees