Showing: 211 - 213 of 213 RESULTS

Passing By or Staying?

“If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord,
come to my house and stay”
(Acts 16:15).

In Philippi there were not enough believers to organize a synagogue. Ten heads of household were needed for that to happen. That is why a few believers gathered in an open-air prayer group, near the river.

Lydia, originally from Thyatira, was a seller of purple. Purple fabrics were rare and expensive; hence, they were used by the aristocracy and the wealthy. It was an extremely lucrative business. Lydia’s house was very spacious, with enough room to house believers and shelter a nascent church. Before opening her house to the spread of the gospel, she opened her heart to the message and got baptized. Lydia asked that both God and the message would remain in her home, in her family… and in her life.

The Lord is not interseted in merely passing by our homes or our lives, and it is of no use to us either; we need Him to stay, we need Him to lodge with us forever.

Meanwhile, a young slave girl, who had a spirit of divination and had become a great source of profit for her owners, came out to meet Paul with scandalous shrieks, which people regarded as divine oracles. The owners of this slave, taking advantage of this, were exploiting her for their own benefit. The girl posed an obstacle to the missionary path of the apostles. Despite being possessed by the devil, she shouted encouraging the people to follow the apostolic teaching presented by the servants of the Almighty, a God infinitely superior to Zeus, their supreme god. (see Acts 16:17)

The servants of God, in the name of the Almighty, set that woman free from the power of the devil, opening a new life for her. This generated a blessing for the woman, but also strong opposition to the missionaries; because it affected not only the business of her owners, but also those of God’s enemy himself.

For God there are no firsts or lasts. Both for the wealthy businesswoman as for the young slave, there were the same offers and opportunities for salvation – and the same sting for the hosts of evil as well.

“By the efforts of satan to destroy it, the ‘incorruptible’ seed of the word of God, ‘which liveth and abideth forever’ (1 Pet. 1:23), is sown in the hearts of men; through the reproach and persecution of His children the name of Christ is magnified and souls are saved”. 
– Ellen G. White –

“Only a living thing can go against the stream” 
– Gilbert Chesterson –

There is no persecution or persecutor that can overcome
the incorruptible seed or the saints of the Lord.

Renew your commitment to faith in Jesus and His Word today.
Don’t just pass by; Stay with Him!

God bless you, and may you experience God’s wonderful grace and mercy today…

Perspiration or Miracles?

“They stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city,
supposing him to be dead”
(Acts 14:19)

Perspiration is a liquid composed of carbon dioxide and water vapor that we secrete naturally through the pores of the skin, and in greater quantity when the ambient temperature is high. It can also be produced when the body generates heat, such as when we exercise, and in stressful situations. Among the functions of perspiration we can highlight bodily thermoregulation, the elimination of toxins, and cooling.

Beyond the physiological, we also use the expression to illustrate the degree of identification with an ideal or with a cause. If we say that someone “oozes commitment through their pores” it is because they identify with something and are passionate about it.

For its part, a miracle is a divine intervention. It is a supernatural act that is perceived or received through faith. For some, it is just a hypothesis that aims to explain certain phenomena that have no possible scientific verification. And for those who don’t want to believe, a miracle is a subjective perception or a weakness of the needy human heart.

Acts 14 mentions that Paul was stoned in Lystra, dragged out of the city, and left for dead. Assisted by some disciples, Paul got up and went to Derbe to continue preaching. The bloodstains had still not dried on his robes, but he was continuing on with his mission.

After proclaiming the gospel in that city and making many disciples, he returned to Lystra, Antioch, and Iconium to continue preaching, even in the midst of tribulations, in order to extend the kingdom of God.

In this way, Paul visited the major cities of the world at the time. It is true that many miracles accompanied Paul’s ministry, but it is also true that he gave himself completely to the cause. “Woe to me of I do not preach the gospel!” he exclaimed in 1 Corinthians 9:16.

Are we today in need of more perspiration, more identification, and more commitment? Do we need more communion, more focus on mission, and more miracles? Don’t we need to detoxify ourselves from selfishness and pride, maintaining the ideal temperature of the first love, permanently refreshed by Christ, our Source of Life?

“The secret of success is the union of divine power
with human effort. Those who achieve the greatest results
are those who rely most implicitly upon the Almighty Arm”

The Lord performed many miracles out of nothing,
but He also performed many miracles on the basis of perspiration.
Let us act as if everything depended on us;
let us trust as if everything depended on God.

God bless you, and may you have a wonderful and miraculous day…

Filled with Joy

“And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirtit” (Acts 13:52).
“Rejoice always” (1 Thessalonians 5:16)
“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4)

Is it possible in the day and age in which we live to speak, write, and above all, experience a life filled with joy? How can we remain joyful in the midst of so many anxieties and uncertainties? Few have suffered in life as much as apostle Paul, and yet it is he himself who says that he was full of joy. This is a concept that he repeatedly presents in his writings.

The dictionary defines “joy” as a feeling of great happiness, pleasure, or delight caused by well-being, success, or the prospect of prossessing what one desires. The Bible explains to us that sin – that is, separation from God – is the cause of lack of joy. In reality, sin promises joy, but always delivers sadness. The joy it offers is superficial, feigned, and transient.

In the Bible, joy is not pleasure, nor enthusiasm, nor elation, nor laughter. Joy is a deep feeling that comes as a result of experiencing the approval of our actions by God. Joy is the assurance of knowing ourselves to be in God’s ways and will, regardless of any situation or adversity we must face.

There is a widespread idea leading to the thought that I find complete joy by doing what I like, meaning what I want. Contrary to that idea, in the Bible true and complete joy is only possible in the presence of God. He is the God of joy, and He grants it to us as a gift, a favor, a fruit of the Spirit. If it is a fruit, then it is a result, or a consequence. It is the result of trusting and obeying the Word of God. It is the result of knowing that God is acting to fulfill His purpose, even in the most difficult circumstances.

The shepherd who finds his sheep and the woman who finds her coin share their joy with their neighbours, while the angels of heaven rejoice over one sinner who repents.

“Jesus says, ‘Without Me ye can do nothing’ (John 15:15).
Our growth in grace , our joy, our usefulness, – 
all depend upon our union with Christ. It is by communion with Him,
daily, hourly, – by abiding in Him, – that we grow in grace.

He is not only the Author, but the Finisher of our faith.
It is Christ first and last always.
He is to be with us, not only at the beginning and the end
of our course, but at every step of the way”

God bless you, and may you have a joyful day…