Thursday, June 30, 2011


(ESV) Hebrews 12:14 Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. 15 See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no "root of bitterness" springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled;

This is a great leadership lesson. It points to actively engaging with someone who is down hearted or feels stepped on, otherwise you will have to deal with many other issues. I have dealt with that situation and most of the time it deals with procrastination. No one wants to deal with a challenging issue with someone else, but it is just a matter of time before you will have more to deal with. The root of bitterness is infectious and it will reach much farther than you imagine.

For Him,

Steve Amos

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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Manna...back to the morning

After consecutive days of dealing with a back issue and falling asleep in the recliner before I get my time in the Word, it's back to the morning...

(NASB) Matthew 5:29 "If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.
30 "If your right hand makes you stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to go into hell.

This was Jesus speaking to the Crowds in the Sermon on the Mount. He had just gone through the Beatitudes which probably turned everyone on their ears. And then He said that just following the 10 Commandments to the letter was not good enough, it's really about the heart of the matter.

Now Jesus tells us that it is better to live this life mamed than to go to Hell. That makes sense to me, Hell for eternity sounds like a bad deal in comparison with blindness or a disability. But Jesus had more meeting there, I think. I believe that if anything is holding you back from ministry, you need to do away with it. We are here as servants to the Most High God. There is nothing more important than that. Abraham, by faith, had Isaac on the alter ready to sacrifice him because God told him to. What do you need to get rid of today for God's glory?

For Him,

Steve Amos

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Monday, June 27, 2011


(ESV) I John 1:5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

This is some powerful text from 1 John, it really highlites the need for self assessment. The walk in darkness indicates a continuous walking in sin and disobedience to God's word. Someone that calls themselves a Christian and goes through their lives always lying and cheating and completely consumed with themselves will probably be very surprised come judgement time.

We will not be perfect on this side of Heaven, but if we are believers we should feel remorse and guilt whenever we do something that God has told us is sin. The forgiven sinner is fast to confess, agree with God, that they messed up in order to restore fellowship with God and one another.

I pray you have a great week,

Steve Amos

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Sunday, June 26, 2011


(NKJV) 2Corrinthias 6:1 We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain. 

God's grace, just like His Manna was for the Israelites, has no shelf life. We can store up food in our bodies, but we can't store much of anything else. God has a purpose for his grace, it needs to flow out as quickly as it comes in, that brings God glory.

Many blessings,

Steve Amos

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Saturday, June 25, 2011


(ESV) Ephesians 1:11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,
12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory.
13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

Kind of a parallel verse to yesterday's...this is so clear, we were SEALED by God! That's not sealed like a ziplock. We know those break....instead it means marked or set apart, maybe branded...and are given the Spirit as a partial payment, an earnest deposit of the final sum, which is redemption. I believe many who call themselves Christians are just being decieved. Without the Spirit, there is no seal, if no seal, judgement will follow based on our works not Christ's. That won't turn out well, no matter what we claim we did for Christ.

In His Love,

Steve Amos

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Thursday, June 23, 2011


(ESV) Romans 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19 For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation thas been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. 23 And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.

As we better understand what it means to be a believer, we are given the perspective that this time of suffering is short and the eternal peace that we are given is going to be overshadowed by the joy of being with the Father again, as it was intended from the beginning in the Garden of Eden. Imagine a leasurely stroll with God and all is at peace....

Then the times, like today, when I say dumb things, do dumb things and seek my own glorification, will not bog me down any longer. I will stop caring about "I".

Believers are given the Holy Spirit as a down payment of what is to come, what a gift! But when we are birthed in our new bodies and revealed as adopted sons of God, the richness of the relationship with our Heavenly Daddy will be so good.

Press onward toward the goal as the time comes nearer,

Steve Amos

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It's been a struggle this past week, with meetings and travel...never the less, I press onward. Last night I got home at 9:00 and made the mistake of setting down. I woke at 6:20 this morning. Really needed the rest, but missed my time in the Word.

(NASB) Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been a baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been a buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our a old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7 for he who has died is freed from sin.

There are many theories of what Heaven will consist of, but as verse 5 says, we will be like Him in his resurrection. Think about Thomas touching the Lord's scared hands...makes me wonder if the scares were left just for Thomas or do I have to be reminded all of the dumb insidents that left my body scared for eternity. 

The biggest thing that sticks out to me from the time after the resurrection was that Jesus spent time fellowshipping with people, He spent time ministering and He spent time encouraging and rebuking the disciples. It seems very likely that we will do those things as well. 

But the very best thing will be the freedom from sin. It is the downfall of our lives, we fight the Spirit to serve ourselves rather than others...we always want what serves us first and unless we war with that urge we will be completely ineffective spiritually. Grace shall not increase if we walk in the flesh day by day. Our sin put to death on the cross at Calvary, walk in the newness of life.

In Him,

Monday, June 20, 2011

Manna...on the Road

(ESV) 1 Corinthians15 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.

It seems that we are so eager to pull some new "truth" about God out of scripture, that we sometimes forget the basics of we're sinners, hopelessly lost and heading for Hell at 100 mph, we are called by the Lord and he shows us our eternal state, we must believe that Jesus graciously came from heaven, lived a perfect, sinless life, died for our sins and rose again, defeating death and we repent of our sins and make Him the Lord of our lives, then we get the Holy Spirit as our help til we are united with Jesus again in Heaven.

Maybe you believe a little diffently, but that's scripturally the path to salvation and eternal life, as opposed to eternal punishment for our sins.

How do we know that it is true? Well, the guys that are closest to Him all died terrible deaths, mostly involving torture, and would not deny Him. All of the writings of the New Testament were written during a time when they could have been contested by the people that were there witnessing the miracles.

The faith that it takes to believe is not a challenge all you need to do is open the door a crack to say maybe there is something to this. He will reveal the truth to you. He did it for me over 11 years ago now.

Many blessings,

Steve Amos

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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Manna on the Bayou2

Tonight we watched Swamp People with people from the bayou...kinda like watching a scary movie in a haunted house! Love it here, but wish the humidity was under 90%, at least by a little.

(NASB) 2 Timothy 4:17 But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that through me the proclamation might be fully accomplished, and that all the Gentiles might hear; and I was rescued out of the lion's mouth.
18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed, and will bring me safely to His heavenly kingdom; to Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

As Paul was finishing his race, his confidence was overwhelming. No matter the situation, God had his back. He knew that God's mission would be accomplished and Paul considered himself blessed to be a part of the mission to the Gentiles. He had been single minded in his focus on reaching the Gentiles...that's us. He said that he would be all things to all people so that He might save some....this highly educated Jew emptied himself of everything and let Christ fill it up.

Our spiritual lives must add up to more than showing up to church every Sunday, or every other Sunday, or at least on Easter and Christmas...we need to encounter the world where it is however God has blessed us. If at work, at the gym, in line at Walmart, we are in the Harvest field. We must see that as our mission, like Paul wanted to reach ALL of us Gentiles. If we are used up in our efforts as Paul was, it will only be possible if we really get that God's got our back all the time.

Many Blessings,

Steve Amos

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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Manna on the Bayou

(NASB) Luke 10:2 And He was saying to them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.

As I am going to sleep tonight, I am just winding down from 6 hours of driving, an encounter with 7000 Alabama ants, having just attended one of the shortest(best) weddings that I have attended and been catching up with some beloved brothers and sisters in Christ.

The wedding was a reminder for me of the future wedding of a loving Saviour and His bride that is made up of the Church body. That wedding will be much longer and the honeymoon will never end for those who are in the Book of Life. But I feel like we are called to continue preaching and teaching and witnessing until that day arrives. There are too many who think church is just coming to watch a bunch of professionals do their craft on significant holidays. Hogwash!!! we who are saved are all pieces of the pie of how to do church on Sunday, Jesus didn't go everwhere himself, he had disciples to help him reach out to all of the towns. The harvest is plentiful today as well. We need to stop talking and start moving forward withe the Great Commission.

I pray we each try to disciple another, but also to find someone to disciple you....none of us are truely mature.

Steve Amos

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Manna in Montgomery...

(NASB) John 10:27 "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;
28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.
29 "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand.

One of the great assurances given by Jesus. Those who are His are His, a gift from the Father! What great encouragement! He knows me and sees me as a gift. Would the Father take back the gift if we mess up? Surely not! We are His for eternity.

But notice that the verse implies that we are just a bunch of (dumb) sheep...We not only need the shepherd to take care of us, we will know His voice and follow Him. In Jesus time, if a sheep wondered away from the shepherd, as they were prone to do, they would be consumed. They needed to listen and follow the shepherd to safety and green pastures with good water. If you know someone that is not following the Shepherd or not listening to the Shepherd, then you pray earnestly that they either submit or get saved...there are only two options, they will be consumed.

Praise God for being the Good Shepherd!


Steve Amos

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011


How great it is to be home with my family. After being gone for 5 days, I am so thankful for Sheena, what a blessing to me.

(NASB) Genesis 18:10 He said, "I will surely return to you at this time next year; and behold, Sarah your wife will have a son." And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him.
11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in age; Sarah was past childbearing.
12 Sarah laughed to herself, saying, "After I have become old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?"
13 And the Lord said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh, saying, 'Shall I indeed bear a child, when I am so old?'
14 "Is anything too difficult for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, at this time next year, and Sarah will have a son."

What a great reaffirmation, is anything too difficult for the Lord. Anyone who knows the Lord and walks with Him understands the grace that redeemed us from our just reward. That is a miracle in my mind. Just like He knew Sarah laughed disrespectfully at the promise that was made, He knew everything that we had done AND everything that we will yet do and still wanted us to be with Him in heaven.

There are many that surround us that are hard for us to give a rip about, but not for God. Even the knuckleheads are His workmanship. So we need to remember that we were once lost in Sin and only by His grace we were not as them. Evenj the real tough cases are not difficult for God, if we follow after Him, He will help us learn to reach out to them, even develop a love for them that is only through Christ.

We all need stretched from time to time, God does so much that is outside our ability to comprrehend. As we love Him more we will see His handiwork around us and be amazed!


Steve Amos

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011 a midnight snack

(NASB) 2Timothy 4:1 I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to  judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: 2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season;  reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great  patience and instruction. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, 4 and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.

Paul's final advise to his beloved Timothy was to just do it. He had a calling that was not dependent on who would listen, most would be diligent AND patient. That is a tough thing for me. I want microwave results, but recall chapter 1 verse 7, the Spirit can make us bold, disciplined and loving because others will not want to hear the true Gospel, but will seek out something less. When we look for less Gospel we get nothing, we're all in or all out. The assurance of Heaven isn't a timeshare that we hit a couple weeks a year. All you have then is just enough religion to be miserable and I believe that is the state of many souls in the pews on Sunday. 

Let Christ overcome you and just do it, be bold and loving and do whatever he asks this week.

Many blessings,

Steve Amos

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Monday, June 13, 2011


(NASB)2:14 Remind them of these things, and solemnly charge them in the presence of God not to wrangle about words, which is useless and leads to the ruin of the hearers.
15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.
16 But avoid worldly and empty chatter, for it will lead to further ungodliness,
17 and their talk will spread like gangrene.

I believe that there is something in many of us that would rather debate an issue until we win the argument rather than to stop arguing and try to help someone. I think about all of the proverbial arguments over the colors of the choir robes or carpet. Nothing must be more frustrating to God. As my father-in-law says, you'll never know it in a hundred years. It all comes down to pride and vanity. Both of which quench the Spirit's fire burning within us, our eyes are focused in the mirror, not on the Master.

Will those things that we disagree about matter in a hundred years, many probably not.

Today let each of us honor God with our humility and not bring dishonor by allowing our pride to be a hinderance to the Great Commission.

Steve Amos

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Sunday, June 12, 2011


(NASB) 2 Timothy 1:13 Retain the standard of sound words which you have heard from me, in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.
14 Guard, through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to you.

We have heard many sermons, been taught many different things. Paul had emptied himself into Timothy, spent years giving him milk, then solid food and major truths of scripture. Why? Beacause Paul knew he would have his faith challenged, why else would he guard anything....

We are all in the same boat, if you listen to good sermons, spend time in the word and have someone to talk to about Spiritual things, you will still have someone challenge your beliefs. That is a good thing as long as you remain on the vine. You need the Spirit to determine, steak from rubbish. Some of the rubbish has a convincing arguement. One of the major cults has many a member that used to go to a mainline church, but withered on the vine and was "evangelized" by an argument that used familiar words and told half truths. We must stay attached to the Vine to have holy decernment.

If you can watch some of the health and wealth preachers and not want to cry for all of the little old ladies sending in their seed money or the "healers" proclaiming their power and not cringe, you need to get back into the word. Paul himself struggled with a thorn in the flesh, didn't HE have enough faith to be healed?

May each of us increase in decernment and wisdom today! Let us not walk about spiritually blind and be easy pray for the enemy.

Many blessings,

Steve Amos

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Saturday, June 11, 2011

Manna, its a late dinner

After being up at 6am on a Saturday to get packed and driving a total of 5 hours, this is a lot later than I would like, but I did get to listen to Matt Chandler a bunch, so my toes are adequately stepped on since I won't have Sandy to do it for me tomorrow.

Matt Chandler is the preacher for the Village Church in Tx. He had brain cancer a couple years ago and he had surgery, chemo and radiation, now he's back to a full schedule and all test are clean, however 85% have relapses with brain cancer, can't cut too much and can't fry it too much. So he sees life through much different glasses than most of us do.

Check him out on Itunes or you tube.

(NASB) Genesis 11:1 Now the whole earth 1used the same language and the same words.
2 It came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land aof Shinar and settled there.
3 They said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly." And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar.
4 They said, "Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name, otherwise we will be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth."
5 The Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built.
6 The Lord said, "Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them.
7 "Come, let Us go down and there bconfuse their language, so that they will not understand one another's speech."
8 So the Lord ascattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city.
9 Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of the whole earth.

This is just a few generations after the flood that left only 4 couples on the earth and here we go again, trying to be like God. But thousands of years later many people do the same thing today. We want to control life and death in the name of science. We want to control nature, we want to be in control of everything. The same thing happened in the garden of Eden, Eve wanted to control what she ate.

Real freedom happens when you turn over control to God. It is not an overnight process, but take time to work on it day by day.

Steve Amos

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Friday, June 10, 2011


(NASB) Matthew 25:21 "His master said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.'

Jesus, in the parable of the talents, illustrates clearly the tendency of some people to not caitalize on the talents that they are blessed with, he also illustrates that the good servant puts his blessings to work, which produces more talents and more responsibility.

There have been times where I could be found in either camp. I think we tend to experience seasons where we are more plugged in and some where we are less plugged in. Each of the valleys have us more concerned about ourself and less concerned about our brothers and sisters in Christ or the people who do not know Him. It has always been a return to the Word and prayer that have revitalized my use of the talents that God has so graciously given me.

We are all the servant with two talents, we have grown up in the richest, free-est country in the World. We each have so muh more than we need, yet too many carelessly waste the abundance at times with selfish living.

If you are a believer, your family is your first ministry, then your community, then the country and the world. Use your talents to bless those around you and your ministry will expand.

But my favorite part is the "enter into the Joy of your Master"!! That Joy should be the hallmark of our lives as those who are abiding in Christ. That Joy is not just a good feeling, but peace as well. Do you remember when you were lost? You knew that you were on the wrong side of the valley between Hell and Heaven. Peace was not even an option. Joy would be ridiculous, that need for joy has lead many much farther down the wrong road than they ever imagined they would go and still remain unfulfilled. The evil servant does not use his talents for good, just keeps them to hisself. He lost out on the blessing of sharing and the Joy of the Master...for eternity...

I pray you have a blessed weekend.

Steve Amos

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Thursday, June 9, 2011


In studying scripture for tonights Mens group, surprise, surprise, God's plan is best. Where there are defined roles, you can be successful.

You have many different ways to solve most problems, but the simplest is often the best. The roles as God has defined them match the intended design for each person. I notice that some men want a biblical womans role in a lot of ways, but I've never see on want to bear the children yet. And the same goes for the woman wanting the mans authority, but not the responsibility of dying for their spouse.

Take time to read the account of creation and the fall in Genesis. I am taught so much by the Spirit through it. Simple yet so grand!

Have a blessed day!

Steve Amos

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Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Exciting new announcement! Ok most of you won't care, but I have figured out how to set up a blog.

All of these emails are now posted to my new blog, You can go back to look at previous emails without having to hunt them up in your archives. You can also post stuff to Facebook or Twitter. 

If anyone has anything they would like to post, prayer requests, praise reports, etc, please forward them to me and I'll get them up as soon as possible.

Today, please remember Matthew Marks in prayer, he was pitching the other night and broke a bone in his arm and is having surgery today. 

(NASB)2 Timothy 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 
17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. 

It is easy to think of other people needing the teaching, reproof, correction and training, But as Jesus said we must remove the plank from our own eye before removing the speck in our brothers eye. We each need to have a partner who will help us in each of these areas. 

Several of the people that receive this email do just that for me, but we each need a person on both sides of the equation, someone who does these things for us and someone for us to do this. That is the Christian model. 

So we need to get into Scripture every day, not just for ourself and our Savior, but in order to fulfill our place in the Body.

Have a Blessed Day,

Steve Amos

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Manna - June 7

Galatians 3:23 (NASB) But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 
24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 
25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. 
26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 
27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 

Lest we forget that Paul didn't even thank God for the Galatians in the beginning of this letter and opened this chapter with calling them foolish. They were messing up in a lot of areas, but this was the root of a lot of it. We are no longer under the tutor of the Law. We are clothed in Christ, not the external rightousness that the law can only provide. If we are good enough actors, we can look good, but unless Christ is alive in us, we put Him on...we cannot be effective on any real level. So many have Christ as a concept in their minds and try to follow the law and they cannot do it. When we become believers, that will change us and will affect how we reguard one another. God loves everyone. If we are in Christ, we should too.


Manna - June 6

2 Timothy 2:19(NASB) Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, "The Lord knows those who are His," and, "Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness." 

This is one of those verses that should both provide comfort and challenge to the believer. First, we are known to our Lord and are we are His. What power could eclipse His greatness? 

Secondly, we who name the Lord should abstain from wickedness...see 1 Peter 1:13-19

13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, "Be holy, for I am holy." 
17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one's work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. 

We should strive for excellence, not under the Law, but for the King, we were filthy in sin, yet He gave everything to save us. Love makes us disciplined. As we love Him more we will want to please him. It makes me wonder about those who do not preach this, who do not preach sin. 

Have a blessed Monday,

Manna - June 5

I pray each of you has had a fantastic Lord's day. It was a special time at Alexis celebrating the Lord's Supper and recognizing the graduates in the congregation. 

John 15:1(ESV) "I am the rtrue vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.

If our task as believers is to simply be the branches, then we only have two major functions. To be attached to the vine and to feed and hold the fruit. So many people feel like church is a casual thing that you have to do on Easter, Christmas and Mother's Day. I cannot be an active branch if I just get nutrients once a week, much less once a quarter. Branches disconnected from the vine for large amounts of time do not resemble the branches and that is a great picture of the current state of the Church in the US. We would much rather be entertained with a great program than to hear the rich words from Scripture. There must be immense frustration trying to be a branch without a vine, but we have playing church down to a science. Sadly enough, many have just enough "religion" to be miserable.

But if we are attached to the vine, what a life of freeedom, the vine produces the growth of the branch and produces the fruit. Once again, all we have to do is to stay close to the Lord and as clean as we know how, then we will bear fruit. 

We don't need to judge one another, just check out the fruit. Come alongside one with wilted leaves and no fruit this week.


Manna - June 4

(ESV) 2 Timothy 1:6 For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, 7 for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. 
8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God,

Verse 7 is one of my favorites in the Bible. Its easy to allow our flesh to take over when we are afraid. I have allowed some level of fear desuade me in doing what I felt called to do on many occations. But if we burn this into our consciousness, we should be emboldened to do what He asks us to do. It is not our task to complete, He is going to do His work with His power and will receive the Glory when the mission is accomplished and we get to be a part of that! Not only do we get to be a part, He wants us to be a part!! 

His gift of love, power and self control could transform Our lives if we yield to it. I have felt the frustration of trying to do too much, the frustration of "just doing something" and expecting God to bless it and the frustration of not seeing the results that I wanted to see. Once again, it isn't my plan, I get to be a part. As a good slave, my job is just to execute the piece of the plan that my Master has given me. what freedom there can be in that. My witnessing may never lead to a  person repenting and praying to reeceive Christ, but my execution of the witnessing is my part to play. 

I hope we each can use the Power, Love and Self Control that lives within us for His Glory today.


Manna - June 3

Genesis 2:22 (ESV)And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. 23 Then the man said, 
 "This at last is bone of my bones 
and flesh of my flesh; 
 she shall be called Woman, 
because she was staken out of Man."
24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

Ok, since today marks 11 years of being married to my beautiful wife, I thought these verses were appropriate to look at. 

There may be many interpretations of the literalness of this scripture, if that is even a word. Is it literal or figurative? I am not sure it really matters, other than, I believe God can do it literally, so I tend to err on at side of the equation. But I digress...what a gift the woman was to the man! Someone to relate with, someone to share life with. A partner for eternity at the time. No sickness or pain had yet entered Eden. Were there disagreements, probably not, were there kids, no. Were there inlaws, no. There was no Oprah...a perfect 

The woman completed the man and that is why I am so blesses to have Sheena. When I have a shortcoming, she is often there to provide me balance. I know that the Adam praised the Lord for is wonderful gift, as I do. 

Many in the US see this story as male schovenism, but it is far from that. It is order, it is balance. God is far above even our view of this. The woman was literally part of the man, oh how would our relationships with our wives change if we viewed her that way. No voices or hands would be raised in anger. Your big toe never turns against the foot.

Much the same way as the Body of Christ should be the Bride that she will be now. Why do we major in the minors with people at we will spend eternity with?? 

Thank you Lord for the great gift that you gave me 11 years ago today. Thank you for blessing our family with 3 beautiful children. Let us both remember that we are one flesh and a part of one Body until enternity comes. PRAISE GOD!!!


Manna - June 2

Gal 5:17 For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. 
18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law. 

The war between the flesh and the Spirit is one that is waged every day in the believers...we cannot begin to get through life without having our flesh continue to war against what God would have us do. The battle against the law was won at Calvary for the believer. Through time in prayer, the word and worship, our the Spirit overcomes the flesh. Then we have the power to say yes to God and be His hands and feet to the lost world.


Manna - June 1

Ezekiel 37:3 (NASB) He said to me, "Son of man, can these bones live?" And I answered, "O Lord God, You know." 
4 Again He said to me, "Prophesy over these bones and say to them, 'O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.' 
5 "Thus says the Lord God to these bones, 'Behold, I will cause breath to enter you that you may come to life. 

As we literally prepare to celebrate the life of Rose Hall, I am overwelmed with the sense ofthe more "dead" I am to the World and my Flesh, the more useful I will be to the Lord. We all have times in the desert and times of plenty, spiritually speaking. But even during the times when we have strayed to the desert, we always have, as in the parable of the prodigal son, a gracious forgiving Daddy at our Spiritual home who won't berate our failures, but instead, kill the fatted calf and throw a party at our preturn.

Praise God for Grace today, but ask Him to help you carve away the unlovely parts for His Glory and Use.


Manna - May 31

It is slipping later, tomorrow back to morning, if the Lord wills and I can get to sleep!

One other thing, feel free to share this with others if you feel led. If you want to add anyone let me know that too.

Phillipians 4:10 (NASB) But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. 
11 Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 
12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and bsuffering need. 
13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. 

I could easy hammer on the lah-tee-da channel again, but will not. Again not a blank check as some would apply it.

One of the deacons at Alexis once said to someone who had been in need, but wouldn't ask for the help, that they stole his oportunity to be a blessing to them. The Phillipian church responded to Paul's need, just in time, God's time. Each of us are in need occationally (often for me), need of finances, need of encouragment, need of rebuke or just the need of a yokemate when there's heavy lifting to do. Although we might have joy no matter the circumstances as Paul indicated, we are all equipped uniquely to serve in the body. Why can we not ask for help in serving the Lord, the same fleshly pride that may have prevented us to reach to Him as our savior for a season...I can handle this, you might say, but I can do nothing Godly without his enablement and power and wisdom and all other fruit that comes from His Spirit....just a sad imitation of what He can and wants to do. God hasn't saved no junk, we are all needed to be His hands and feet here in the World. Its kinda like we're a balloon filled with our own air when you are trying to rise to the level of the Heavens, all you are going to do is look good for a while until you slowly start to deflate. You cannot accomplish what is needed without His Heavenly breath.

Strengthen each of us today Lord and wipe out our pride, let us rely on you to do your wotk and we'll be careful to give you the Glory for the accomplishment.