Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Ekklesia: The Called Out

the called out

Scripture:  Matthew 16:13-19      

The word “Church” is actually translated from the Greek word “Ekklesia” which means calling out or summon out.  God has and is calling us His “Church” or His body out.  Out of what? 
We are nothing like the rest of the world.  We are aliens, sojourners, just passing through but while we are here we are to impact this world.  We are to change this world for the glory of the Father through the Son.
God through His son Jesus is calling us out of a life of shame, fear, hopelessness and apathy.  The list could go on and on.  No longer is His Church, that He has given the keys to the kingdom of Heaven, to be a broken down, impotent, a decaying archaic institution that is powerless and of no influence in the world.
He is calling His church out of a life of selfishness, egotism, helplessness, weakness, and powerlessness.  How can we be a church that bombards hell… when we are full of hell? We must answer the call of our Savior’s voice as He calls us corporately and by our name.
This powerhouse called the Church is what you are a part of.  We bring life to all those that our influence reaches.

Daily Prayer:
“Father thank you that I am a part of your church.  Thank you for calling me out of the darkness and into your marvelous and wonderful light.  Help me live in such a way that others want what I have.  Give me the opportunity to share the love you have given me with those around me.”

Daily Challenge:
Each morning and evening look in the mirror and thank God (out loud) for calling you out of this world system and into His body of people who bring life to all those around them.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016



Scripture: 1 Corinthians 9:24-27

Everybody knows that we need to exercise but most of us don’t want to do it.  We want the perfect body and perfect health but we aren’t willing to do what it takes to get it.  We have list of excuses, which aren’t really excuses but they are our justification as to why we don’t have the perfect body or good health. 
Many of us do the same thing in our spiritual life.  Actually we are less disciplined in our spiritual life than the other areas of our life.
If we were to apply the same discipline to the other areas of our life that we do in our spiritual life, we would be kick out of our homes, never have electricity, continually having car problems because we don’t maintain it and the list goes on.

Discipline is part of what it means to be a follower of Jesus.  To be a disciple means you are being taught and instructed in how to be like Jesus.  Discipline is a must if you are ever going to go the distance.
You need to be a long distance runner not a spiritual sprinter.  You need to finish the race and finish strong.

What Discipline is not:

·      Discipline is not the end.
·      Discipline is the not the main thing, it simply keeps us on track to the main thing.
·      Discipline is not the focus if so then we have fallen into a religious mindset and it’s more about the doing than it is about the being.
·      Discipline is not an excuse for a rigid and boring life.  It should always be flexible and open to spontaneity and moving of the Holy Spirit.
·      Discipline is not a substitute for an intimate relationship with Jesus.
·      Discipline is not being a moralist.  Moralist are people who think they are good enough or at least they are busy trying to be good enough.
·      Discipline is not some moral code to be lived out in your own power and strength.

What Discipline is:

·      Discipline is the agent that allows us to live free in the power and presence of God.
·      Discipline is a means to a desire end.
·      Discipline is result of vision.
·      Discipline is the power to achieve the vision or dream.
·      Discipline is the pre-requisite to winning.  (No Olympian ever won a gold medal by accident)
·      Discipline is being a disciple.

Daily Prayer:
“Father, life gets a little crazy at times and I admit I’ve not be as disciplined as I should in my spiritual life.  Allow your Holy Spirit to give me the power and strength I need to do in order to grow spiritually.”

Daily Challenge:
Get up early every morning for a week and spend 30 minutes in the Word of God reading and praying for others and not yourself.

Monday, August 29, 2016


Know who you are
Scripture: Jeremiah 29:11-14

Believe it or not, your life is not about you.  You don’t have the right to live it the way you want to.  For most of us, that offends us to the core of our being.  And why?  Because we’ve been taught since we were babies: “It’s your life and you can live it the way you want to.”

However, that statement is far from the truth.  It’s not your life and you can’t live it the way you want to.  We were all created to serve!  We were created to worship either God or the Enemy: Satan.  You can’t stand on middle ground for there is no middle ground.  There is no DMZ (De-Militarized Zone)!

Most people in our world who are decent, nice, and kind, but don’t know Jesus as the Lord of their life, would not consider themselves to be Satan worshipers.  However, that’s exactly what you are doing when you simply live for yourself.

Selfishness is the ultimate and original Sin.  Adam and Eve fell in the Garden not because they were tempted by an apple or fruit but by the statement the serpent made, “YOU can be like God.”  What God had created to worship and have relationship with Him had now become self-conscious, and now their existence was about what they wanted and not about what their CREATOR destined for them.

It’s not about you, but it is about you.  God esteemed and prized us so much that, after the fall of Man in the Garden, He did everything that was needed to ensure that we would be brought back into a right relationship with Him.  The spiritual term for that would be ‘reconciliation’.  Reconciliation means to bring back to a right relationship.

Daily Prayer:
“Father, my life is not my own; it is Yours.  Since it is Yours, You can do whatever You want with it.  Help me not to live selfishly and focused solely on what I want, but to be open to what You want for my life.”

Daily Challenge:
For 3 days in a row, when you wake up in the morning, stop and think about what you first think about.  Then, the next 4 days, wake up and stop to think not about what you want but about what God wants for your life.

Sunday, August 28, 2016



When is the last time you thought about the amazing things God has done in your life?  Enoch in the Bible (Genesis) on a daily basis walked and talked with God.  Adam and Eve would walk and talk with God every day in “the cool of the evening.”  They had memories of times with God that were awesome.  What are your awesome memories with God?

Remember the works of God.  Begin to contemplate the awesome deeds of God.  Not just the things that He has done for you or your family, but the awesome deeds He has done throughout modern history and ancient times.

Remember who God is.  Don’t just look at His works but look at who He is.  God is amazingly compassionate beyond human understanding or comprehension.  He is patient and slow to anger.  His anger lasts for a moment, but His favor lasts for a lifetime.  He is merciful.

Take time to spend with God. 

Daily Prayer:
“Dear heavenly Father, I love You because You have loved me.  You are an amazing God and I want to spend time with You.  Help me rearrange my schedule so that I can spend more time with You.”

Daily Challenge:  Take a walk every day for a week in the evening by yourself and God.  Pour your heart out to Him, no matter what it is.  He already knows anyway. 

Saturday, August 27, 2016



Scripture: Habakkuk 3:2

Satan, your enemy, will make sure that you get too busy to see God for who He really is.  Satan knows if you truly see God for who He really is, you will stand back and fall face down in awe of God’s amazing, astounding, and astonishing glory.

“I just don’t have the time to spend with God.  I have too many other things to do!” Time with God is not an option or choice on a multiple choice test; it is vital and necessary.  Just like the air you breathe— without it you will die!

The reason we don’t stand in authentic amazement of God is that we just don’t take the time to be with God.  Spend the time to get to know God and you will never be the same.  You will begin to think differently, act differently, respond differently, and talk differently.  Spend time with God and you’ll start acting like God.

Time is the one thing that we all have, no more or no less than anyone else.  What you do with that time will reveal where your heart is.  You will spend time with what or who you love most.  We may not actually say we are too busy for God but, by looking at where we spend our time, it will tell us what the most important things in our life are.

We can choke God’s Word with a yawn; we can hinder the time that should be spent with God by remembering we have other things to do. “I haven’t time!” Of course you have time! Take time, strangle some other interests, and make time to realize that the center of power in your life is the Lord Jesus Christ.
Oswald Chambers (1874–1917)

Daily Prayer:
Dear Lord, please help me with the busyness of life.  Help me discipline myself to not get distracted by the ‘cares of this life’ and focus my ‘affections’ and attention on You and Your will for my life.”

Daily Challenge:
Every hour on the hour, stop what you are doing and take a minute or two and spend time with God.  Read a scripture, say a prayer, or just tell Him how you are feeling.

Friday, August 26, 2016



Scripture: Colossians 3:23

On the right side of every Jewish doorpost is nailed a small piece of parchment rolled and inserted into a wood, metal, stone, or ceramic case called a mezuzah. On the front of the parchment are lettered the twenty-two lines of Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and 11:13-21.  The Hebrew word Shaddai, which means “almighty”, is inscribed on the back in such a way that it can be seen from the outside.

The mezuzah was a ritual code that said to everyone entering and leaving that home, “as for me and my house, we shall serve the Lord.”  An everyday mezuzah ritual helps us grow our own souls by modulating the mundane into the eternal.  A mezuzah connects us to our Creator, Redeemer, and Sanctifier.

Today I would like to ask how can we mezuzah our universe.  How can the eternal connect with the temporal? 

The Christian faith is a sign language.  The true language of biblical faith is not phonetic but ideographic; meaning it is not formed with our mouths so much as with our bodies and lives.  That’s what it truly means to be a living sacrifice. 

To mezuzah one’s universe is for the world of Grace to intersect with the world of culture in such a way that grace is visible in the whole of life, historically as well as spiritually viable. (excerpt taken from Soul Salsa Leonard Sweet ©2000 Zondervan Publishing)

Daily Prayer:
“Lord, by Your grace give me the power through Your Holy Spirit to live a life that honors You and brings hope and life to others.  Help me live beyond the words I speak so that my life speaks louder than my words.”

Daily Challenge:
On your bathroom mirror, write or tape different prayers, quotes, or goals that you want to happen in your life or through your life, and every morning when you wake up and go to the bathroom remind yourself of these for one week.

Thursday, August 25, 2016



Scripture: Ezekiel 37:1-10

When you look in a mirror what do you see?  Do you see a person full of the awesome power of God? Or a person full on regret, sorrow, hurt, pain, arrogance, etcetera?  What you see in the mirror is all in your perspective.  What are you looking through?  The only way that you will see who you are truly destined to be is you must see yourselves through the eyes of God.

Do you see yourself through your culture?
…through your family?
…through your friends?
…through your accomplishments?
…through your environment?

The only way that you will see yourself through the eyes of God is you must read and study the Word of God, the Bible.  The Bible is God’s love letter to you.  It is His road map for your life.  It will shine light on the dark places of your life.  It will illuminate and give clarity to the confusion that may exist in your life.

Allow the Word of God to faithfully reflect a true picture of who you are!

Daily Prayer:
Lord, please help me see who I am the way You see me and not how I see myself or the rest of the world sees me.  Give me the power to be who You have called me to be, Your son/daughter with purpose and destiny.”

Daily Challenge:
If you have the guts, find a few close friends and ask them how they see you: a confident person, insecure, strong, intelligent, ditzy, etcetera.  Then go to God in prayer and ask Him who He sees you and go with what God says.