Mark 10: 17-18 NKJV Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.
God is continually challenging us to go beyond good behavior and discover our motives. Sometimes when we hear this story of the rich young ruler seeking Jesus’s counsel we wonder why Jesus says that only God is good. When we dig deeper, however, we can see that Jesus is questioning whether the man is trying to flatter Him with compliments or if the man recognizes that He is God, and therefore is ALL that is good. By questioning the man’s motives, He is showing the rich young ruler that His heart is in the wrong place. There are times when our hearts are also in the wrong place, but if we truly see God for who He is we will want to give Him our ALL rather than get ALL that we can from Him. When you sincerely know that He is God, full surrender is a privilege. We learn in Matthew that if we seek God’s kingdom and righteousness above all, everything will be added to us. Our needs and wants will ALL be met, if the motive of our heart is to love God wholly and pursue Him first.
God wants your companionship, but if your motive is to praise Him so that He will give you what you want, you’ve missed the truth. Don’t let the purpose of your desire for God be how good He can make your life. Pursue God out of love, so that your motive is pure. A true love pursuit of Christ will reveal that you want to offer everything to God rather than seek an advantage from Him. Don’t let your pursuit of God be only so that you can gain satisfaction here on Earth, but instead let it be a pursuit so that you can dwell in eternal life and love.
Pastor of Christ Temple Church
Psalm 34:1-3 I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul makes its boast in the Lord; let the humble hear and be glad. Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together!
A magnifying glass intensifies and multiplies the size, ability, and strength of anything which passes through its lens. Each of us holds a magnifying glass in our hands daily, we choose what will be most important in our lives, what we will amplify, and what we will multiply when sharing with others. Too often it is the frustrations of life that get magnified to our family and friends. In the same day, you may lose your car keys, spill your coffee, get in a fender bender on your way to work, and then get there and receive a bonus check from your boss. Yet, it’s more likely you’ll aggrandize the negative events of the morning, rather than praising God for the blessing you received. When you magnify your frustrations, but fail to mention your blessings, the blessings never become what they were intended. What you allow to dominate your thoughts will determine your destination.
Amplifying God in your life will intensify your desire for His wisdom and His presence in all facets of your daily walk. When you magnify the sun, it can ignite a flame, likewise when you magnify the Son of God, you will ignite a fire within. Others will no longer sense your frustration and fears; the attacks of the enemy will no longer be on the tip of your tongue, but the God in you, magnified through you, will burst forth with a song of glory and victory. It will light a fire in you, and in everyone around you that cannot be quenched! Choose wisely what you will magnify in your life. Will it be bad? Will it be just good? Or will it be God?
Pastor Chuck Lawrence
Christ Temple Church
Matthew 26:45 Then He came to the disciples and said, “Sleep on and rest” (WNT)
There is a place of full surrender to God’s will that allows you to not be frustrated by the people who can’t, or won’t come through for you. You can reach a perspective where it is only about the will of your Father – it’s no longer a requirement that others meet your expectations for you to accomplish purpose. Their shortage of support will not shake your destiny. You’re not building your future based on someone else’s cooperation. You would love to have their support, it would make it easier, more enjoyable, more exciting, but it won’t be the determining factor whether or not you fulfill God’s dream for your life.
When Jesus came to His disciples the third time and found them sleeping, (He had asked them to stay awake and pray with Him). He was no longer exasperated with them like he was the previous two times, rather He told them to “sleep on”.
Total submission to God’s will allows you to say to every circumstance that is not going your way, to every planned event that has collapsed, to every person that has not followed through on their promises, “Sleep on, it’s okay, God’s plan is still intact”. The mark of perfect surrender is when imperfect scenarios, strategies or supporters no longer derail your destiny.
Senior Pastor of Christ Temple Church
Acts 17:6 “These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also”.
Our journey of life is like a relay race, and the baton is presently in our hands. This is our watch, our moment to further a transformation in the body of Christ that will positively effect generations to come. It’s up to us to handle our leg of the race with utmost vigilance. It’s our minute to amplify the transforming power of the church to accelerate the effectiveness of the next wave of runners. We have this brief opportunity to grab hold of that baton and run with it in a way that impacts this generation for Christ, inspires others to sprint to their potential and be willing to be a catalyst of change that turns our world upside down.
Other generations may have allowed the world to turn the church upside down, but God is calling us to do what the early church did. It’s time to “disturb the peace”, so to speak. We cannot afford to settle for what just makes everyone around us comfortable. Complacency creates temporary ease yet undermines purpose. Passion on the other hand invigorates us to upset the status quo to chase destiny. It’s our turn, the baton is in our hand – what will we do to make sure we leave this world better than we found it?
Matthew 14:29 “Yes, come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. (NLT)
Notice in our story the storm did not calm down at the courageous decision of Peter. There was no hint from the prevailing circumstances that he was doing the right thing. There was no encouragement from others, he only had a word from Jesus, ”Yes, come”! At that, Peter moved forward.
Waiting until everything is perfect to put a plan into action, will take a while…a long while, how about never. When you wait for the storms of life to calm down, everyone in your “ship” to agree with your decision or some extensive data to verify the rigidity of the substance you’re about to venture out upon, you miss the moment of the miraculous. You can analyze until you paralyze; evaluate until you’re way too late.
It’s just the brim of the boat and deep-seated fear that is keeping you so uncertain about stepping beyond the imagined boundary and obeying the word from God. Today let His word ascend higher than the waves and louder than the storm – and step beyond your imagined limits.
Pastor of Christ Temple Church
Colossians 4:17 “Be sure to finish the work the Lord gave you.”
Many of us say something is complicated when in reality it’s just simply difficult. Saying something is complex gives us sanctioning to remain idle. While we are waiting on more information, for someone else to make the first move, or a more opportune time; days, weeks, and months pass. Recognizing that the task is just difficult, will set you free toward action, persistence, resolution. Many times we blame our inactivity on complexity to hide our timidity! When we are reticent to act we continually keep solutions just beyond our reach.
God is calling us to progression not safety, pursuing not settling, productivity not security. So differentiate between the complex and the difficult, decide to take on the difficult and move forward. The difficult will remain so, until you decide to do something about it. Make that tough phone call, address that uncomfortable situation, write that long overdue note, forgive, whatever! You will find after getting out of your comfort zone, 90% of those difficulties have real and reachable solutions. Today cease from calling the difficult complicated – and seize imminent freedom.
Pastor of Christ Temple Church