Category Archives: Jesus

Christmas | Worship Christ with Abandon

“When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. After coming into the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭2:10-11‬ ‭NASB‬‬

The magi were filled to overflowing with joy when the star finally showed them their destination. They went into the house and, seeing Jesus with His mother, they fell down and worshiped and then gave Him treasures of great value.

Jesus is worthy of our worship. He is more valuable than our most valuable treasures. Coming into His presence is cause for great joy.

He reaches out and leads people to worship Him.

Do you rejoice this way at the opportunity to come into His presence? Do you worship Him this way, giving Him the things that you value? Have you ever really placed enough value on Him to worship this way consistently, allowing this type of worship to become more natural?

Worship Christ with abandon because nothing – not your time, your life, your possessions – are as significant or as valuable as He is.

Do you approach worship as though it were routine or mundane? If we truly worship, we’re stepping into the presence of the Creator of the universe, the Savior of the human race, the King of all. This is the opportunity we receive when we receive the opportunity to worship Him. It ought to produce great joy in us because Christ is infinitely valuable, infinitely significant. And this joy, this recognition of His worth ought to lead us to want Him more than the things we treasure, to give Him what we treasure as a demonstration of the fact that He is more valuable, as a way to intensify that desire in myself.

Pray this way: “God, I do not treasure You above all, but in this moment, I truly do want to. Please change my heart. Please show me what I must do to ascribe the worth to You that You are due, to worship You as You ought to be worshiped.”

It’s by His grace that we are even afforded the opportunity to worship Him. It’s only by His grace that our hearts can be changed to treasure Him as He should be treasured, to sacrifice for the sake of worshiping Him.

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A Game of Fools

Doing wickedness is like sport to a fool,
And so is wisdom to a man of understanding.
(‭Proverbs‬ ‭10‬:‭23‬ NASB)

God views godliness as wisdom and wickedness as foolishness. A fool enjoys doing wickedness, looks at it like a contest – he’s always trying to be more wicked. A man of understanding enjoys acting wisely, being godly, and always seeks to be more wise and godly.

When we sin, we act foolishly. We enjoy sin because we’re fools. If we had understanding, we’d delight in being godly. Find delight in acting wisely.

God expects wisdom. But much of what we enjoy is sinful, wicked, foolish. When we forget what God expects of us, we look on our sin as a good thing.

Pray that God will help you find joy in godliness, in seeking Him, growing in Him. Each of us needs a fundamental heart change – a change in the things that naturally delight us.

Only by the grace of Christ can our hearts be changed so fundamentally.

God Protects His Children

I have become estranged from my brothers
And an alien to my mother’s sons.
For zeal for Your house has consumed me,
And the reproaches of those who reproach You have fallen on me.
When I wept in my soul with fasting,
It became my reproach.
When I made sackcloth my clothing,
I became a byword to them.
Those who sit in the gate talk about me,
And I am the song of the drunkards.
But as for me, my prayer is to You, O LORD, at an acceptable time;
O God, in the greatness of Your lovingkindness,
Answer me with Your saving truth.
(‭Psalm 69‬:‭8-13‬ NASB)

God protects His children. The obedience He expects is enough to make us the objects of ridicule, reproach, and persecution. If we are His children, if we obey Him, we are under the protection of His great lovingkindness. But we must we willing to trust Him enough to truly be obedient.

Have you ever trusted God enough or been obedient enough to Him to be the object of ridicule, reproach, or persecution. Or have you always been disobedient?

He protects us. We can trust Him.

When we forget this, we become afraid and hopeless when facing ridicule, reproach, or persecution. Or perhaps, if we are not obedient, we feel falsely confident and comfortable. We are called to obedience. We are called to zeal. We are called to faith.

The grace of Jesus is the source of faith, and His lovingkindness is the source of our protection.

Weakness Is My Strength

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians‬ ‭12‬:‭9-10‬ (NASB)

God’s grace is all we need. Let’s glory in our weakness, be content in it, even when we suffer or face persecution. When we know we’re weak, when we stop pretending to be strong, we can rely on His strength to truly make us strong.

God’s power is best displayed in us when we’re weak, when we’re humbled. When we admit our weakness, His strength takes over.

His grace provides everything we need.

Pride keeps us from truly experiencing the power of God. So, embrace weakness. Acknowledge it. Be content in it. Boast in it.

That’s when God’s power dwells in us.

The Word of Christ

So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

(Romans‬ ‭10‬:‭17‬ (NASB)

He gives faith. He gives the word that creates faith. Faith comes from truly hearing (heeding) the Gospel, and the hearing itself comes from Christ.

God is ultimately in control of our hearing and heeding the Gospel. Therefore, He is the source of our faith and salvation.

We owe everything to God. I really don’t control anything.

If we truly hear the Gospel, God will give us faith.

We need God to give me even the most fundamental of spiritual things, even the ability to hear Him.

When we truly accept this truth, we become dependent on God for everything. We have real faith.

Stirring Up Trouble

Hatred stirs up strife,
But love covers all transgressions.

‭Proverbs‬ ‭10‬:‭12‬ (NASB)

God doesn’t want us to stir up strife, but to love one another, forgiving sins, preserving peace. He wants us to love as He has loved us.

Hatred, pride are our nature. We must be reminded to love rather than hate.

Rather than wanting to expose the sins of others, we should want to love them, forgive their transgressions, and keep peace.

We need love, and we need to give love. Jesus is the example and source of this love.

Overcome

Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men. If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY,” says the Lord. “BUT IF YOUR ENEMY IS HUNGRY, FEED HIM, AND IF HE IS THIRSTY, GIVE HIM A DRINK; FOR IN SO DOING YOU WILL HEAP BURNING COALS ON HIS HEAD.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

‭Romans‬ ‭12‬:‭17-21‬ (NASB)

When someone does evil to you, don’t repay them in kind. Respect what is right, and make peace with others where you can. Let God have His vengeance – because He will.

When someone does evil to you, do good to them instead, and they may feel the pain of remorse and guilt. In this way, you overcome evil.

If you repay evil with evil, you will be overcome by evil.

We are called to do good, to do right. God will repay men’s evil. Vengeance belongs only to Him.

Don’t take revenge. Have respect for what’s right. Make peace.

Only His grace gives us the capability to overcome evil with good.