Remember

precRltRemember?  If you’re going through a relationship crises, remembering may be a painful thing.  Seeing an old photo or driving by a location may cause you to remember a time when things were better in your relationship.  Remembering even these good times can be a painful experience in the light of your current crises.

And then there are those other memories.  The painful memories of conflict, of words said that you wish you could take back . . . but can’t.

But in Christ, Remembrance during hard times is an important part of drawing close to God.  This special Remembering can be wonderfully healing and is a guardian against depression and hopelessness. This remembering involving reviewing all the things the Lord has done.  I think about all the times the Lord has come through for me in the past – the amazing “coincidences” where I prayed about a problem and He came through.  Or the times when I was suffering, but I know Christ was right there with me.

There’s an example of this Godly remembrance in the Bible.

In Psalm 77, the writer is going through a crises, and in the middle of the night he can’t sleep because of his anguish.  He tells the Lord “You hold my eyelids open; I am so troubled that I cannot speak.”  But he turns his mind and begins to remember the Lord’s care and love for him. He says “I call to remembrance my song in the night.”

And I said, “This is my anguish; But I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High.”

I will remember the works of the LORD; Surely I will remember Your wonders of old.

I will also meditate on all Your work, And talk of Your deeds.

So he acknowledges the crisis (“this is my anguish”) but remembers and rests upon the past years of the Lord’s goodness.

The final act of this remembrance is to recall one thing: the Lord’s goodness has not changed even during your crises.  If the Lord came through in the past, he’ll come through again in His own special way.  As the psalmist says in Psalm 27:

I would have despaired, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the LORD
In the land of the living.

Who would be there when it all goes away?

precIltImagine if you were sitting in your most comfortable chair in your house, surrounded by loved ones and time suddenly sped up around you and years went by like seconds.
You and your chair stayed in place while around you in a blur you saw things change.  In less than a minute your loved ones where gone, your pets gone.  Soon in a few minutes the house itself went away in a crumbling wave.

When this all stopped you were left in an empty field with the rubble of your life now ancient ruins from a long vanished civilization.

Would you have anything worth living for?

If you have Christ, then his love will never change and he will not ever leave or forsake you.  Even if all things and all people forsake you, he will remain by your side.

Here are some Bible verses to consider:

Psalms 37:28 (NKJV) 28 For the LORD loves justice, And does not forsake His saints; They are preserved forever, But the descendants of the wicked shall be cut off.

Matthew 28:20 (NKJV) 20 “teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

Hebrews 13:5 (NKJV) 5 Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Hot on your Heels

precWltWhat’s coming up fast chasing you? Monsters? Your past failures? Bill collectors? Family members?

Well, if you’re in Christ, the Word of God makes it clear something very Good is coming up fast behind you.

Isaiah 51:11 Those the LORD has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away. (NIV)

Psalm 23:6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. (NIV)

Throw off the Weights- Spending time with the Lord

precIltIf you’re like me,  your time is consumed by all the busy ways of modern life, work, chores, events, family.  I really don’t spend enough time with the Lord to listen to Him and read His word in the Bible.  But this is something we must do.  It is a matter of priority.  If you are a believer in Christ, then by Christ we are the daughter and sons of God, and we are commanded to spend time with Him.

Paul, in Hebrews 12 exhorts

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.

The term “everything that hinders”  in this verse in the original Greek is “ogkos” and this means a burden and heavy weight.  This includes our worries and the many “to dos” we have.  It is good to be responsible and a good worker, but let’s remember the Lord is more important than these things.  One hundred years from now, you and other people won’t care about today’s “to dos”  But I can guarantee you that you wish you had spent more dedicated time with the Lord.  Spending time with the Lord is an eternal investment.

A new play: The Marriage Conspiracy

We Keep Our Work Hidden

 The Marriage Conspiracy, opened to enthusiastic reviews! It’s being called “The Screwtape Letters” for marriage. The thoughts and insights from God’s Word are illustrated in such a way that people are still meditating on them weeks later. Viewers are reporting back that they are thinking of their vows in a whole new way, and are fighting with new zeal to have the marriage God intended them to have!
This dark comedy blindsides with Biblical truths, as we watch the strategies of two demons plotting the destruction of a marriage. One of the  greatest attacks on the church currently is focused on marriage. This play will be especially useful to married fellowships and retreats, as couples will be stirred up to recognize the spiritual warfare that targets their relationships, and help equip them to take a stand for God’s plan in their marriage!
For more information see michaelsewell.com

God’s Will and the Worry of Making Decisions

precYltYou want God’s will, but it’s not always clear what His will is.  So you worry about making the wrong decision.  Sound familar?

Listen to this short audio message that offers some freedom right from God’s word:

God’s Will and Making Decisions (mp3)

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

Focus in the Right Place – Audio Message

precDltDavid’s Psalm 38 teaches us some big lessons about how we can get ourselves into a worried, depressed state by where we focus our mind on.   Take a two minute break and listen to this short message:

Focus On God (MP3 Audio)

Immanuel – Christ is with us during divorce pain at Christmas

Are you hurting due to divorce, separation, or estrangement from your spouse during the holidays?  Greg Laurie’s message “Immanuel” speaks the truth that Christ is with us and knows first hand the pain and loneliness of estrangement.

Listen to Immanuel (MP3) > Greg-Laurie-God-Is-With-Divorced-and-Lonely-People

Remember your destination

Imagine you are a child on a long difficult car trip on a very bumpy road.  Now imagine you didn’t know where you were going.   That would be hard.

But then picture the same scene, long trip and a bumpy road, but you knew you were going to see your grandparents. Their house was filled with all sorts of goodies, lovingly prepared for you. You didn’t know when you were going to get there, but you knew there was a good destination ahead.

This is the position we are in as followers of Christ.  There is no doubt we are on the long, rough road of life, but Jesus did not keep us in the dark about our ultimate destination.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”   — John 14:1-4

Jesus wants us to know our ultimate destination to comfort us.  Let’s not forget our destination, and every pothole that shakes our bones is part of the same road that brings us to Him and pure joy beyond our comprehension.

When you can’t see . . . hope

Sometimes we read that the Lord is with us and and will help us, but things get worse and we don’t see the reality of these words.  In the bible, Job, who went through many trials, also felt this too.  He said of God:

When he is at work in the north, I do not see him; when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him. Job 23:9

Listen to this short message of encouragement, for God is at work!

When You Don’t See Or Feel (mp3)