Life in the Spotlight

Life in the spotlight.  But…it will be brief.

Moses was the great emancipator…but in a few years Joshua took over.

David was Israel’s greatest king…but after forty years he turned the reins over to Solomon his son.

United States presidents serve for not more than eight years…and then someone else takes their place.

Life in the spotlight is brief.

That place of great influence…honor…and respect is for a moment – then someone else is given that privilege.

You too live in the spotlight…moments of special influence and privilege.  A graduation…a promotion…an award – but soon it’s history.

But…not really.  As a follower of Jesus you will reign with Him – a place of honor and privilege.  And it will be for eternity.

 Life in the spotlight – for eternity.

 

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Guilty Until Proven Innocent

Guilty until proven innocent.  That seems to be in reverse.

But that’s the way God’s redemptive plan works.

“There is no one righteous, not even one…all have turned away…all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…”

So…it’s guilt first.  That’s the divine declaration.

But “…the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

Then comes innocence.  That’s now the divine declaration…for whose who trust in Jesus.  They are declared innocent.

One final step.  Consider how it will be in eternity: “To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy…”

 Guilty – innocent – glorified.

This is God’s plan for you.

Guilty Until Proven Innocent

Guilty until proven innocent.  That seems to be in reverse.

But that’s the way God’s redemptive plan works.

“There is no one righteous, not even one…all have turned away…all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…”

So it’s guilt first.  That’s the divine declaration.

But “…the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

Then comes innocence.  That’s now the divine declaration…for whose who trust in Jesus.  They are declared innocent.

One final step.  Consider how it will be in eternity: “To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy…”

 Guilty – innocent – glorified.

This is God’s plan for you.

 

 

Combinations

Combinations.  When the numbers are right…the lock will open.

And…that’s the way it is in life.  If one number is wrong…it throws everything off.

The Bible speaks to this: “…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.”

A man may seem to live a well-balanced life — but he has a moral weakness.  One of the numbers is wrong – and the door to a joyful and victorious life remains locked.

Thankfully…God’s Word gives us the key to the right combination: “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith…”

Jesus has come to help us get the numbers right…and open the door to a fulfilling life.

Check the key pad of your life.  Get the combination right.

 

Lowered Expectations

Lowered expectations.  Then…you will feel more positive about other people.

If you expect anything close to perfection…you’ll be very disappointed.  They’ll let you down every time.

Also…lowered expectations will help you to observe good qualities.  They will be recognized because of the contrast.

Thankfully…God has lowered His expectation for all of us.  While we are to press on toward maturity…He never forgets that we are but dust.

God’s love…mercy…and grace – they come in generous supply in response to our inadequacy.

That’s God’s response to His lowered expectation of us.

So…be God-like.  Expect less…and then you’ll be grateful for the good you see in others.

 

 

From Victim to Victor

From victim to victor.  But…how can that become a reality?

Past abuse – shameful and inexcusable — is the responsibility of the abuser.  But…victory comes when the abused assumes the responsibility for their future.

Sadly…some never do not understand this.  The memory of the past lingers on…plagued with fear and uncertainty.

But…where do you find the power to leave the past and embrace the promises for the future? 

This where you meet the gospel head on.  It says that “…if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

Jesus is the door between an abused past and a new life with Him in control.

From victim to victor.

Faith and the Marketplace

Faith and the marketplace.  How practical is the life of faith when confronted with the realities of everyday life?

The answer should be obvious.  Faith is about honesty…diligence…honor…truth …fairness…and dependability.

With these qualities…success in the marketplace is assured.

Biblical faith is all-encompassing.  It touches every aspect of life.  It is pragmatic…practical…and reliable.

It is incredibly competitive in the marketplace.

Some people mistake faith for weakness…gullibility…and naivete.  That’s not authentic faith.  Real faith is practical – and even competitive.

The Bible gives directives to children…parents…servants…and masters.  At every turn…practicality is obvious.

Live the life of authentic faith.

The marketplace will welcome you.

A Text…a Phone Call…a Visit

A text…a phone call…a visit.  All these can happen in the course of your day.

But…don’t think that a text or a phone call is the same as a visit.

Time saving?  More convenient?  Yes.  But…don’t assume the relational potential is the same.

A text may be more efficient than a phone call…and a phone call more efficient than a visit.  But…they’re far from equal in building strong relationships.

A visit is an experience of presence…and has greater potential for caring…sharing…and expressing love.

As technology gains more and more predominance…relationships will suffer.  Shallowness will be the result.

When God chose to reveal His redemptive love for people…He became a Presence – God with us.

 No text.  No phone call.  But…a visit.

 

 

Incomprehensible

Incomprehensible.  That word speaks to the limitations of human understanding.

Paul says that “For now we see through a glass, darkly…”

Did God have a beginning?  Is there an edge to space?  When did eternity start?

The human mind is unable to answer – it was not created with that capacity.

But…the inconceivable doesn’t stop there.

Why do bad things happen to good people?  Why do the innocent suffer?  Why does God sometimes seem silent?

Here too…the human mind is unable to comprehend the context and answer to such questions.

God’s ways are above ours.  But…His ways are fair…just…merciful…and with eternal purpose.

You are called to trust.

 When you don’t understand God’s ways…you can trust His heart.

 

 

Hidden Faults

Hidden faults.  But…God sees them.

Many faults are observable — plain for all to see.  But other faults are buried deep in the soul – known only to you and God.

The psalmist prayed: “Forgive my hidden faults.”  He understood the need for the purging of his soul.

These faults are hidden under pride…self-righteousness…and secret pleasures.  No one knows but you and God.

In another place the psalmist prayed: “Search me, O God, and know my heart…And see if there be any wicked way in me…”

Some faults are so hidden that only God can expose them.  Even you are blinded to them.

And…it’s at this level that God’s grace is enough.  The blood of Jesus has deep cleansing power.

 Then comes the joy of being forgiven.