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Satisfaction Guaranteed.

Satisfaction Guaranteed.

Today, many in America will sit down and feast until their hearts (and bellies) are content. We are a blessed people, and it’s good and right that we are thankful for all of God’s provision. It is good to remember that many around the world will not feast on turkey… there will not be gravy on every table. For untold millions, their bellies will not be satisfied. But amongst those who’s bellies are full, even multitudes of them will not be satisfied—full maybe, but not satisfied.
This sad paradox is the reality of the fallen world that we live in, and it illustrates an important spiritual principle. Real satisfaction does not come from consumption, but from the Lord. 

The prophet Haggai spoke to the nation, because of their neglect of the God:

“You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.” – Haggai 1:6

It is possible to have everything you need to sustain life, but never enough to make you truly satisfied. 

Jesus presents a radically different proposition. He not only offers satisfaction, he delivers it! With Him, spiritual satisfaction is guaranteed. Jesus said: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.” -Matthew 5:6

The Apostle Paul wrote about his own experience with satisfaction… “I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.” -Philippians 4:11

Whether filled or hungry, Paul knew a contentment that was beyond physical, it was supernatural.

Remember the loaves and the fishes? The multitudes shared very little actual food. Their plates were not “full”, nevertheless, the scripture says: “They all ate and were satisfied” -Mark 6:42 Not only that,… there were 12 baskets of leftovers.

When we have a right relationship with Jesus, He gives to us a satisfaction that is beyond physical provision, beyond a temporary contentment, but a lasting, sustaining provision of Spiritual life. He Himself is the bread of life (John 6:48), and He alone Has the Living Water (John 4:10)

Today, let’s feast! Let’s feast in thankfulness for all of His provision! Let us eat of Him and drink of Him, and be truly satisfied, because with Him, satisfaction is guaranteed! 

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2016 in Holiday, Meditation

 

Step By Step

But at last he came to a part where it was more level and the valley opened out. And there, on the other side of the river, quite close to him, in the middle of a little plain between two hills, he saw what must be the White Witch’s House.  -C. S. Lewis The Lion The Witch & The Wardrobe

Now when evening came David arose from his bed and walked around on the roof of the king’s house, and from the roof he saw a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful in appearance.  -2 Samuel 11:2

For at the window of my house I looked out through my lattice, And I saw among the naive, And discerned among the youths A young man lacking sense, Passing through the street near her corner; And he takes the way to her house, In the twilight, in the evening, In the middle of the night and in the darkness.  -Proverbs 7:6-9

And not many days later, the younger son gathered everything together and went on a journey into a distant country, and there he squandered his estate with loose living. -Luke 15:13

Sometimes the journey can seem like progress, going up as it were, for a while. It’s just steps. Sometimes they are few and sometimes many, but they can be steps… not up, but away.

Edmund’s steps were uphill, climbing to the castle. Urged on by appetite, he was enchanted by the taste of turkish delight and the promise of his own importance. Only the witch new how to appeal to the evil within him.

David’s steps were few and easy, as he was enticed by the desires of his eyes and the lust of his own sexual desire. Sometimes it only takes a few steps, or one wrong turn, to invite disaster.

The steps of “the young” man were “lacking sense”, they were careless and carefree, and he wandered into a snare. It might have been different had his steps been purposeful. If you don’t know where you are going, you are sure to get there.

The prodigal’s steps were rebellious and manyBlinded by his own desire for independence from his father, he took a road that led to the pigsty. Independence is immaturity, maturity is interdependence.

The Christian adventure is always that -an adventure! We walk by faith, nevertheless it should always be a careful walk. There are many signs that say “come this way” each appealing to some weakness of the flesh. They promise adventure, comfort, or riches, but they may be steps away rather than steps up.

Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. -Ephesians 5:15-17 

 
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Posted by on June 23, 2016 in Meditation, Real Life

 

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2014 Retrospective

I watched the movie “Live, Die, Repeat” recently, and was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It’s kind a like a military, sci-fi version of “Groundhogs Day” but with a lot fewer laughs and a lot more action.
It got me thinking… in light of the New Year, about all the events of the last year. Many great things happened in 2014, but there were also some missteps along the way. Probably a lot like you, I said things I wished I hadn’t, and held back things I should’ve said. I was blessed to be involved in many good works, yet I’m nagged by the good things I failed to do. I’m not living with regret, I trust the Lord and his ability to make good out of even the worst of circumstances. Nevertheless, it’s important for all of us to learn from our mistakes, and to apply those lessons as we grow and move forward in our lives.

I would suggest the following retrospective questions as you consider the new year…

1. What things did I say, that didn’t need to be said?

2. Where was I dishonest, either lying, or withholding accuracy in my statements?

3. What things that I engage in that were a waste of time and energy?

4. What things did I fail to do, that would’ve been a blessing to others?

5. In what ways did my life honor the Lord, and in what ways did I dishonor Him or his name?

6. Could it be said that I loved too much, or too little?

7. Does my checkbook register accurately reflect what I believe about the Kingdom of God and His work on earth?

8. If my coworkers, or neighbors, were tasked with writing a summary of what they see in me, what would that look like?

9. Did I spend too much time in 2014 praying?

10. Do I plan on applying new lessons in 2015, or simply repeating the same old patterns?

May God bless you with His own richness in the coming year. May you know His grace, love, and peace.
– Jim

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2015 in Meditation, Real Life

 

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Future Unsatisfiable Lust…

There is only one longing of the heart of man that will be satisfied in the future: that of the Christian’s longing for Jesus and the revelation of His righteous kingdom. For the sinner, who rejects Jesus and the offer of salvation, there will remain the lust of the flesh, possibly intensifying, yet without the physical ability to satisfy that same longing. Gone will be the myth of the “party in hell”, replaced by the eternal reality apart from the goodness of God.

“…Behold, now is “THE ACCEPTABLE TIME,” behold, now is “THE DAY OF SALVATION” -2 Corinthians 6:2

 

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2014 in Meditation

 

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Are You A Frenemy?

wolf

The recently popularized term “frenemy”, is the seamless blending of  the words friend and enemy, referring to someone who pretends to be a friend but actually is an enemy -kind of like a wolf in sheep’s clothing in the world of friendships.

Sometimes I wonder about people who call themselves Christians, but actually seem to be less identifiable as people of faith than those without it. People in the church oftentimes have very little in common with the examples of believers that we have in scripture.
Jesus called us to follow Him, and He also called us to deny ourselves in that process. Today, in the church, it’s possible to be a friend of God, but still be a friend of the world. How we live, how we dress, what entertains us, how we spend our time and money, -those things can tell us where our true friendship lies, and they are worth examining.

Here are some verses to think about as we assess the conduct of our lives:

You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God?
Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. –James 4:4  

“choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin,
considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward. –Hebrews 11:25-26 

 He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters.  –Matthew 12:30 

“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other.
You cannot serve God and wealth. –
Matthew 6:24

 
 

Redpath -on ending well.

It is not how a man begins his Christian life, but How he ends it, that counts. It is one thing to come forward at a meeting in answer to the appeal of an evangelist, with 10,000 people looking on, or to hold your hand up, and to sign a card. If it is real, the Lord bless you! But the thing that matters is whether, following that decision, you press into the land of blessing! Do you go on with God, do you persistently, patiently, and in the face of every opposition and every testing, go right through? And if you slip and fall down, do you pick yourself up again and go on, or do you go back into indulgence and sin?
I remember in childhood days, during the first world war, on a certain lovely summer afternoon I was walking with my father along the pier at Tynemouth, near Newcastle, England. We noticed a crowd of people around and many ships in the harbor. Presently a cloud of smoke appeared in the distance, grew larger, and soon a convoy of battleships came into the river Tyne, in the center of them was one battleship healing over -I wondered how it had remained afloat. It was the HMS Lyon, coming back from the battle of Jutland, a naval battle which turned the attack of Germany on our country at that time. As the ship got nearer the harbor, I saw great holes in her deck. She had no mast, no funnel, no turrets; the bridge had gone; the deck was just a shambles. Water was pouring in and out of her and she was being gently nursed home by tugs and an escort of ships. Shall I ever forget the sight of twenty-five sailors and one officer standing rigidly at attention on a part of the deck, with a tattered bit of the royal ensign flying from a piece of wreckage? Every throat that could cheer, cheered, and every ship that had a siren blew it. These twenty-six were all that were left, a tragic remnant of 1,100 men. But the ship had held on, and she fought through to the end, and she came into harbor victorious, holed and wounded, with hundreds of men killed -but still afloat and undaunted!
In the course of the Christian life we suffer many wounds from Satan, and sometimes from friends. If one day, however, when we get into the heavenly harbor, we get a welcome like that ship received, and hear the Lord Jesus say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of thy Lord,” we will care for nothing else, for it will have been worth it all when we see Jesus.

– Alan Redpath / “Victorious Christian Living Studies In The Book Of Joshua”

I just don’t think it can be said any more beautifully than this. What a magnificent picture.

 
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Posted by on May 27, 2014 in Meditation

 

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Pride

On one hand, we can be proud of the flesh that God made and take glory in it. We nurture it and keep it looking good as though it is who we are.

On the other hand, we can also be embarrassed about that same flesh that God made and provided us with, pitying ourselves as though it defines us.

Either way is vanity, and comes from not believing who we are as children of God.

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. -1 John 2:16

 
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Posted by on May 15, 2014 in Meditation

 

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