Father lord, I join my brothers and sisters to pray that You will grant us the grace to stir up our gifts always, we pray that You will always empower us always on the right tracks of our gifts, Father grant us grace, strength and wisdom to always manage our gifts to Your Will and for our benefits, we pray that Your throne will always gives us the capability to have our gifts under our control, we pray that Your love will consume and guide us in every roads, paths to our gifts, we pray that our gifts shall portray and become a great channel for Your love to reign, rule and govern all over the earths, Father open our eyes and grant us a certain understanding to see our gifts as a call to action and of servanthood, Father we pray for constant and unlimited flow of the gifts of the spirit to flow in, out and through our lives, Lord, we pray that You will bless, favour every works of our gifts, we pray that You will cause us to flourish, excel, prosper in our gifts and callings, we pray that every thing concerning our gifts and callings will bring glory to the God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy spirit. Amen.
Archive for November, 2010
Here are three more lessons from Lazarus:
1) God has a bigger and better plan in mind. Lazarus was four days dead when Jesus arrived. When the Lord waits, it’s for two reasons: a) That He may be glorified. The Pharisees believed that your spirit left your corpse on the fourth day after you died.
So if Jesus had intervened earlier they’d have said, ‘He wasn’t really dead.’ Hence He told His disciples, “This sickness is… for the glory of God” (John 11:4 NKJV).
It’s in looking back that we clearly see God’s hand at work b) That our faith may be strengthened. Jesus said, “I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe” (John 11:15 NKJV). In life, crises come and go. Your next crisis will be different from your last one, but the thing that must remain strong is your faith.
2) God will ask you to remove the hindrances and deal with the stench. “Jesus said, ‘Take away the stone.’
Martha… said to Him, ‘Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days'” (John 11:38-39 NKJV). Are you praying for an answer in one area, while God’s telling you to take away the stone and deal with a ‘stench’ buried in another? Surrender, you can’t win! When your heart’s right with God your prayers will be answered.
3) God wants to make you a living testimony. Everywhere Lazarus went, without even speaking a word, his life declared that Jesus is Lord.
And the same should be true of you. God has saved and raised you up to be a testimony to His grace and goodness.
By Bob Gass.
Lesson one: Jesus knows how you feel. At Lazarus’ funeral, ‘Jesus wept. Then the Jews said, ‘See how He loved him!” (John 11:35-36 NKJV).
This story proves we serve a God who can not only raise the dead, but can sympathise with us (Hebrews 4:15). So if you’re grieving today turn to God and allow Him to comfort you.
Lesson two: Jesus can give you back what life’s taken from you. He can restore to you the years that life has stolen (Joel 2:25).
Claim that promise; take it to the place where you’ve lost so much, and ask God to replace and renew. Martha said, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.
But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You” (John 11:21-22 NKJV). Instead of saying “if only,” pray “even now I know.” It’s not too late, God can move on your behalf.
Lesson three: Jesus can set you free. “He cried… ‘Lazarus, come forth!’ And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave clothes… Jesus said…
‘Loose him, and let him go”’ (John 11:43-44 NKJV). God’s Word is greater than the thing that has bound, limited or enslaved you. Even though your mind doesn’t fully comprehend it, let your spirit respond to God.
Pray with the Psalmist, “Give me understanding, and I shall keep Your law; indeed, I shall observe it with my whole heart.
Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, for I delight in it” (Psalm 119:34-35 NKJV). When you pray such a prayer your faith will grow, and the circumstances that seem impossible will be changed by God.
By Bob Gass.
Rule 5: Keep it in the laundry room. ‘Don’t treat each other with malice’ [ill will, spite] (Ephesians 4:31 NIV). When you’re angry, spreading gossip is hard to resist. But malicious talk is like wildfire; it consumes those who spread it and those who listen to it.
Don’t display your dirty wash; keep it in the laundry room. Dirty laundry gets aired in two ways: 1) Open embarrassment. You say it where you know others are going to hear it. 2) Subtlety.
You make jokes about their figure, family members and friends, etc., in order to belittle them. This results in embarrassment for the person you’re angry at, widens the gap between you and makes reconciliation impossible.
Solomon writes: ‘… He that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter’ (Proverbs 11:13), and ‘… Love covereth all sins’ (Proverbs 10:12). Paul writes: ‘… In malice be babes, but in understanding be mature’ (1Corinthians 14:20 NKJV).
Rule 6: Be part of the clean-up crew. We say, ‘They brought it on themselves. Let them get over it.
‘ They may have deserved it, but we can’t walk away and leave open wounds to become infected. We ‘… forgive, even as Christ… has forgiven’ us (Ephesians 4:32). How did Christ forgive us? After we’d acknowledged, confessed and repented of our sins? No.
‘… When we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son… ‘ (Romans 5:10). God took the initiative, so forgive, before the other person asks for forgiveness.
And should they remain your enemy for life, forgive them anyhow. That’s mopping up after the war. Only then are you yourself forgiven, the wounds you inflicted healed, and your record before God expunged.
By Bob Gass.
Rule 4: Keep it solution-focused. Someone has said that fellowship is like two fellows in a ship: one can’t sink the other without sinking himself. By seeking to gain the upper hand you both lose.
By seeking to save and strengthen the relationship you both win. So when you speak, be sure it’s ‘… helpful for building others up according to their needs… ‘ (Ephesians 4:29 NIV).
Try to understand what the other person needs. Don’t bring up previously confessed offenses; don’t drag in other people; don’t use wisecracks about people’s weight, height, colour, IQ, physical, mental and emotional limitations; don’t bring up unrelated things that cloud the issue and keep you from finding a solution.
And don’t raise the volume in order to intimidate and manipulate. God made you with a capacity for anger because when handled the right way it’s the fuel that brings needed change and the medicine that heals.
So: a) Seek a solution, not a ‘victory.’ Name-calling and ‘diagnosing’ others only makes things worse. Your focus should not be on what they did, but on what you can do together to resolve it b) admit your own flaws and ask for forgiveness. Since it takes two to tango, acknowledging your own imperfections makes it easier for someone else to acknowledge theirs c) every time you take a ‘swing’ at someone, offer them a positive ‘stroke.
‘ ‘… If there be any virtue… think on these things’ (Philippians 4:8). For each of the difficulties you address, give a compliment. ‘I’m sure this wasn’t easy for you to hear. Thanks for listening to me so graciously.’ Being solution-focused gives people something positive to live up to, not down to.
By Bob Gass.
Rule 3: Keep it current. Storing anger in your hard drive only hurts you. When you download old resentments you start to rehearse them and grow bitter.
‘The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks’ (Luke 6:45 NIV).
When you’re angry deal with it quickly. Don’t passively allow time to decide your options, or sit around hoping the other person will see the light and apologise.
‘If your brother sins against you, go [to] him… ‘ (Matthew 18:15 NIV). Try to resolve it and restore the relationship. When you repress it you add one more skeleton to your closet.
Sooner or later, doctors say, it’ll be at your stomach lining, attack your immune system, predispose you to heart problems, cancers and other physical, social and emotional disorders.
Meantime, it’ll preoccupy you, dissipate your energy, cripple your creativity, hinder your fellowship with God, your friends and fellow believers; not to mention that it denies the offender the opportunity to clear their conscience, repent and get right with God and you.
Stop dragging up the past, trying to blackmail the guilty by hauling skeletons out of closets at ‘auspicious’ moments, plotting revenge, and passing down resentments for the next generation to carry.
Ask God for the humility and courage to deal with today’s problems – today. When your head hits the pillow tonight, know that your issues are current, up to date with God and everyone else, and sleep well.
By Bob Gass.
Rule 2: Keep it non-lethal. Paul writes: ‘In your anger do not sin… ‘ (Ephesians 4:26 NIV). What do Paul’s words mean? Don’t let your anger escalate to the point of doing damage.
Don’t use your words as a weapon or a control mechanism. It’s okay to express your emotions in a healthy way, but keep them in check. Your goal must be to resolve the problem and strengthen the relationship, not ‘sound off’ and wound the other person.
Is this easy to do? No. You’ll need a good strong dose of grace to do it. Words spoken in jest, sarcasm, self-righteousness or ‘righteous indignation’ wound people, sometimes permanently. ‘… Perverseness [of the tongue] breaks the spirit.’ (Proverbs 15:4 NKJV). ‘… A crushed spirit who can bear?’ (Proverbs 18:14 NIV).
‘The tongue can bring death… ‘ (Proverbs 18:21 NLT). Angry words, once unleashed, can: ‘… Go down into a man’s inmost parts’ (Proverbs 26:22 NIV). Your words can live in the heart and memory of a person and go all the way to the grave with them. We say, ‘Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me,’ but it’s not true.
A person can die of a crushed spirit, and the one who spoke the words can live to regret the damage they inflicted and never get a chance to undo it. On the other hand, anger properly handled never needs to be repented of.
So learn to differentiate between the anger you feel and the words you speak. Anger carefully thought through, can reveal important information about needed changes. Focus on that, and ask God to show you what needs changing in the other person; and you.
By Bob Gass.