BUY TODAY: I DIDN’T WANT TO BE THAT GIRL!
Day 10 - Treasure in Jars of Clay I often feel so inadequate. Unequipped for the struggles that come my way. We often face tasks that overwhelm us, overtake us, and consume everything we do. There's a reason we struggle...we are but jars of clay. Commonplace. Ordinary. “But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.” 2 Cor. 4:7 But I love how God doesn't leave us there! We are afflicted in every way...but not crushed; Perplexed...but not driven to despair; Persecuted...but not forsaken Struck down...but not destroyed; Death is at work in us...but we have eternal life. Outer self is wasting away...but inner self is renewed day by day; Afflicted in every way...but eternal glory is awaitin' There are things that are seen...but we look toward the unseen. For the things that are seen are temporary...but our HOPE is in eternity! You may be struggling now, but it will not be for eternity. Don't lose heart, my friend. Hold on. When we are weak, God is strong. How has someone encouraged you recently? #bealight #encouragement
Day 9 - Let Your Light Shine A few months ago I traveled with some close friends to one of my favorite places...a small, quaint village snuggled in the middle of sugar cane fields located in rural Haiti. You can see the mountain range off in the distance, and an occasional ocean breeze from the nearby beach. Children laughing. People cooking. Cows mooing. Roosters crowing. This is the place many call home. The day of arrival is always exhausting. Catching a flight at the crack of dawn. Sitting in airports. Waiting around on a plane. Once your feet finally land in dusty, smoggy Port au Prince, you have to board an old, rickety yellow school bus for another seemingly long drive. My friends arrived around dinner time, and I anxiously awaited their arrival since I had come a few days prior. We chatted at dinner and then they went off to bed. Only to hear of bad news in a short while. My friends' father had a stroke, and the outcome was bleak. We did our best to comfort their startled hearts. Arranged flights for their return to the states in the morn...and then gathered everyone to the rooftop to pray. It is a night that I will never forget. Never. Ever. In a million years. The stars were shouting out loud for our attention. Blazing brighter than I had ever seen before. We put on worship music and we wept and we prayed. And we witnessed the glory of the Lord shining bright. It is amazing to experience God being there...even in your darkest hour. Have you ever noticed that light shines brightest in the darkest places? It's more vibrant and alive. This is true in us as well. God has made our dry bones come alive. Today's reading is 2 Corinthians 4:1-6. We must not lose heart. "For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (v.6)" Whatever you are going through today...don't lose heart. God is able to make the light shine in the darkness. Make the dead rise up. Set the captive free. How can you be light?
Day 8 - You are a Minister "Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God, who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." 2 Cor. 3:5-6 Have you ever considered your job title as "Minister"? Or, do you think only a full-time, seminary degreed pastor can bear this role? Paul says we as believers have been called to be ministers. That is who we are! In Greek, the word minister, diakonos, means servant and applies to someone who is carrying out the will of God. One commentator defines the meaning as 'to kick up dust', implying there is a sense of urgency. We often disregard the importance and honor of serving. Our competency as ministers doesn't lie in our personal skill sets, family heritage, bank accounts, investment balances, political stances, race, social status, or age. Thank goodness...in God's economy there is no delineation of people groups. We all are viewed the same. Black. White. Slave. Free. Rich. Poor. Male. Female.....Equal. I cannot wait for that day! "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise." Gal. 8:28-29 It is God who gives us the competency as ministers. Read 2 Cor. 3:7-18. The ministry of the O.T. was characterized by the letter of the law, leading to death, condemnation, and things that would kill us. The new covenant is characterized by the Holy Spirit and gives us life, righteousness, and the glory of God. One gives death, and the other gives life. In our everyday lives, God has something for us to do. In practical ways, I can reflect on the things I am doing and ask the question, "Is this activity breathing life and encouragement? Or is it bringing shame and condemnation?" The Spirit of God gives life...and when I am obedient to Christ, I will do the same. What will you be a minister of today? #read #bible
Day 7 - What Every Church Leader Should Know Paul finds himself in a precarious situation. His intentions are being questioned by the very ones he holds dear. They are probing and asking for a resume, background check, and letter of recommendation. Read 2 Cor. 3:1-6. Church, we shouldn't be offended when our intentions are being interrogated. Instead, we should live a transparent life and live it well. People are craving authenticity...not sugar-coating. They want the real deal. How to Lead like Paul: Stay Grounded: Are you pursuing and shepherding the hearts of others? Or are you after a shiny veneer? A healthy church has a Christ-centered, service-oriented focus. They want others to feel loved and accepted as soon as they walk through the door. They pursue deep, long-lasting relationships with a goal of heart-change, not merely behaviour modification. Be Genuine: As a leader, do you confess the things you are struggling with? Or do you cast a judgemental eye? No one wants to hang out with Goody-2-Shoes all of the time. People need real, authentic relationships. They want to know they're not alone in the battle against sin. And quite honestly, they want to know that you are on their side. Admit your Flaws: Church, sometimes others want to know your imperfections. It's okay if everything doesn't run smoothly and there's a crack in your voice or the video downstream goes out. People are okay with it. Seriously, they are. They want to know you're relatable. Life isn't always swell. A relatable church is like unearthing a pearl in a clamshell. It is a difficult find. Be Humble: Is your pastor willing to plunge the toilet, hold a baby, or greet you at the door? Humility is refreshing...breaking down barriers between church staff and churchgoers. There are so many people who have pushed church away because they've been hurt by the hypocrites inside. It's a common temptation when you've been wronged. Let's admit we're all sinners needing a Savior. Flawed and messy. Broken inside. When we pursue church rather than Jesus, we've got our priorities wrong. Point upward: Is the top priority pointing others to Jesus? He should be the center of everything we do!
Day 6 - A Fragrant Aroma As I glance down at my bathroom vanity this morning, various perfume bottles catch my eye. Appearing in all different shapes and sizes, each one individually uniquely designed. And although the bottles are quite captivating, the real treasure remains inside. The bottles were created to hold something, much like you and I. Throughout Scripture, we as believers are often symbolized as clay jars, perfume bearers, or empty vessels. God Himself has poured His presence, the Holy Spirit, into our lives. We are His dwelling place. However, we often misunderstand God’s intention as we idly let the time tick by. We were not created to be a decoration, sitting as a display up on a shelf. His intent was to be poured out, spilling lavishly on those around. Read 2 Cor. 2:12-17. “Thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere” 2 Cor. 2:14. In the days of Paul, the Romans had grand parades to celebrate a militant victory. The general of the army would be perched high and lifted up on the first chariot. However, preceding him would be the spoils from the war. Trials always precede triumph. We often forget that our pain and suffering has a purpose. There is a victory awaiting us as we continue to allow the Lord to lead our way. Reflecting on the life of Paul, we see a man whose life was like a roller coaster. Twists and turns. Ups and downs. Often appearing to be travelling nowhere. But through it all, Paul continued to patiently endure with his eyes fixed on the final prize. He lived knowing heaven was awaitin'. He lived with certainty and spent his time well. And here is a great paradox…the more you let go of “you” to God, the more “you” you do become. You find yourself in laying your life down. You find your greatest treasure is living for Him! What if we poured out Jesus from our lives, regardless of the response? What if we eeked out love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control? What if we laid down our pride? Ponder for a moment: How can we live differently? How can we pour the aroma of Jesus out?
Gotta ❤️ little league baseball! #futureslugger #saturday #baseball @comerson_
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