Oh, that my actions would consistently reflect Your decrees!” Psalm 119:5 (NLT)

Does this express your heart cry as well?  “Oh, that my actions would consistently reflect Your decrees!”  Now, there’s a desire I can relate to in my walk with Christ.  It’s the longing of my heart to consistently reflect God’s will and ways in all my actions; but, like the psalmist, I too often fall short.  Temptations crowd into my life like unwelcomed intruders, seeking to control my attitude and conform me to this world.  The struggle within is fought in the battleground of my mind. Continue reading

“He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering….” Isaiah 53:3 (NIV)

C.S. Lewis said, “To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.”

Lewis aptly describes the sacrifice of love and the risk of rejection it involves.  So many today describe love as give and take, when the truth is that real love is giving all. Continue reading

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (NIV) 

Love not only has good intentions, but real love is intentional.  When we believe the lie that love is just a feeling, we’re deceived into thinking that love is a reaction.  The truth is that love is more than a reaction; love takes initiative. Perhaps, the best known verse in the Bible demonstrates the action God took out of love for you and me. Continue reading

“As the time approached for Him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.” Luke 9:51 (NIV) 

Love creates powerful feelings, but love is more than just a feeling.  Love is a choice.  The fake news in our culture today would have us believe that love is an uncontrollable emotion.  “I can’t help myself! I just fell in love!”  You might fall into attraction, but the truth is that love is a determined action. It’s a decision that involves more than just our feelings; it involves our will. Continue reading

“This is real love—not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” 1 John 4:10 (NLT)

As we expose the fake news that is creating so much conflict in our world, one of the greatest lies is this: Love is just a feeling.  Seriously?  Really?  It’s the lie that has shattered so many relationships and disappointed so many lives. Continue reading

 “Teacher, don’t You care about us?” Mark 4:38 (ETRV) 

Fake news has devastating consequences.  It can lead us to believe things that are patently untrue. It can destroy relationships and wreck careers.  It can leave us in bondage, disillusioned with God and disappointed in ourselves. Have you ever drawn the wrong conclusions about your circumstances because the enemy subtly convinced you to believe a lie about God, yourself or others?

One of the biggest lies the enemy can post on the software of our hearts and minds is this:

“God doesn’t care about your struggle.” 

The disciples were almost convinced to believe this lie when they found themselves struggling for their lives in the midst of a fierce storm on the Sea of Galilee.  Mark tells us that “high waves were breaking into the boat, and it began to fill with water.” (Vs. 37) Where was Jesus?  Asleep at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion!  How ironic!  The waves that were rocking their world were simply rocking Jesus to sleep!  Has God ever seemed to be asleep at the wheel when your life was spinning out of control?  Where is He?  Does He even care what you’re going through? That was the same reaction for the disciples.  They woke Him up and asked,

“Teacher, don’t You care about us?” (Vs. 38)

Storms in life can make us wonder if God cares.  They provide great opportunities for spiritual attack and subtle lies to convince us that either God doesn’t really know what we are going through or doesn’t care.  Both are an attack on His character and Deity.  We know, from Mark’s account, that Jesus got up, rebuked the wind and the waves and calmed the storm.

“Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm.” (Vs. 39)

The disciples were filled with the same wonder and awe that overcomes us when God affirms His care in our lives.  Before you’re convinced to believe the fake news that God doesn’t care about your struggle, do a little fact checking from what He said.  Here are just a few truths from Scripture to consider:

  1. God knows and understands what you’re going through. “(Jesus) This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for He faced all of the same testings we do, yet He did not sin.”  Heb. 4:15 (NLT)
  2. God cares about your struggle. “Cast the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.”  1 Peter 5:7 (AMP) 
  3. God has the power to help you in every circumstance. “This priceless treasure we hold, so to speak, in a common earthenware jar – to show that the splendid power of it belongs to God and not to us. We are handicapped on all sides, but we are never frustrated; we are puzzled, but never in despair. We are persecuted, but we never have to stand it alone: we may be knocked down but we are never knocked out!” 2 Cor. 4:9 (Ph)

 

 

 

 

 “What do you want Me to do for you?” Matthew 20:32b (NLT) 

Imagine Jesus asking you the question, “What do you want Me to do for you?”  How would you answer?  What would you say?  Does an immediate and pressing need come to mind?  A holy discontent that you cannot seem to do anything about.  It’s the thing that disturbs you daily. And, if the truth were told, it has made you a disturbance to those around you.  This was the case for two blind men that the Gospel writer Matthew tells us about.  The story is in Matthew 20:29-34. Continue reading

 “Are You the Messiah we’ve been expecting, or should we keep looking for someone else?”  Matthew 11:3 (NLT)

If you’ve ever wrestled with doubts, you’re in good company.  Not only did the disciple Thomas doubt, but John the Baptist did as well. Imprisoned for his bold rebuke of King Herod, John knew he was called to prepare the way for the coming Messiah.  Unable to preach from jail, he sent his disciples to Jesus with a question that revealed his doubts as to whether Jesus really was the Messiah. Continue reading

 “‘You are a king, then!’ said Pilate. Jesus answered, ‘You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to Me.’ ‘What is truth?’ Pilate asked.” John 18:37-38 (NIV) 

“It must be true! I read it on the internet!”  I hope you’re laughing at such a statement.  Surprisingly, much of the fake news posted on the internet is believed today.  What’s not believed, somehow, still seems to shape our attitudes and thinking, leading to confusion and conflict. That’s the power of the written or spoken word.  It doesn’t have to be true to be believed as long as it is shared with passion. Continue reading

“‘The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me; He has appointed Me to preach Good News….” Luke 4:18a (TLB)

With the explosion of social media and news outlets today, fake news has become so common it’s almost impossible to distinguish. Fact checkers are scrambling to separate what is true from what is false. It’s no wonder the public is confused. Left alone, that confusion leads to chaos and conflict in our world. Continue reading