Pastor Bob’s Questions ???

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 In Bible study, specifically at the Church on the Arroyo, we were asked last Wednesday night, what is God’s purpose for us as a species…then IS THERE one task for everyone? History seemed like a good place to begin discovering our purpose. The best history book, the Bible, of course! “The Bible will always be relevant”, a comment made by Beverly S., thank you, we Christians know the answer is there. Where to begin? – At the beginning, Genesis!

Genesis 1:26  …  Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness;”

Genesis 1:28 … “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

God made us in His image. God gave us dominion over every living thing! If we have dominion over all of creation, God then must have dominion over us! He made us so we belong to Him. All man did was name the creatures God made.

Then I checked out the Prophets, they were God’s chosen loudspeakers. They did God’s will and voiced His concerns. They weren’t a bunch of fortune tellers, they were truth tellers. The truth they told were messages from God, the messages weren’t always popular and often not obeyed. Prophets teach us about listening to God and obeying Him. They also teach us the pitfalls of not obeying Him. To fulfill our purpose we must listen to God.

“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” Jeremiah 31:3. God made us because He loves us. We are His creation. He doesn’t need us, He wasn’t lonesome. God is the Perfect Trinity keeping themselves filled to the brim and overflowing with love, which is where we come into existence! The overflowing, everlasting, before we were knit in our mothers womb love! Everlasting love, it can’t get any better! That seems, to me, to be the WHY.

“Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” Revelation 4:11 This is clear enough, we were created for God’s pleasure. So what do we owe Him? My answer is everything! When you know how to use an object it becomes a true tool. The spoon works great for shoveling soup into our mouths. A spoon for digging out a foundation would be a stupid use for the spoon. We know we were made by God out of His creativity and love, for His pleasure. So the next question is what is His pleasure for us?

During BSF in McAllen this past week we studied the book of Psalms related to King David, where I learned “Psalms” has the answers to all of life’s questions. I’m going to avail myself of that new piece of information. Psalms shall be my go-to place whenever I need an answer.

Psalm 57:2 says, “I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me.” This explains that God indeed does have a purpose for us individually. And He fulfills it in us!

Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” God’s word brings light to paths that otherwise seem dark. In the Bible you learn how to live wisely in God’s world, which is a step toward finding your purpose.

Psalm 23:2-3 says, “He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” He places us where He needs us to be. We are not here by accident, wherever ‘here’ is for you.

Galatians 5:22 says”But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,… God produces what He desires us to have. When we were young our mother prepared us for school each day. Made certain we ate breakfast, had proper clothing, brushed our teeth and had our homework with us. God makes certain we have the gift from the Holy Spirit, that He put us in the right place and doesn’t leave us at the door to go out alone. He comes with us where ever we go.

Proverbs 11:14 says, “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.” In other words, one of the main ways God will help you find your purpose is through others. To stay the course God teaches us to surround ourselves with Christ followers. Go to BSF, join the church choir, go to Wednesday night Bible study, and most importantly go to church and read the Word of God, the Bible!

 

 

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Home Sweet Heaven!

“Blessed are those whose strength is in You, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage.”          Psalm 84:5

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I know that this is not our home. We are here temporarily to do the job assigned to us by God, our true home is in heaven – in His heart is our metropolis. Have a Sacred Heart day!

John 3:16

“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

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Every Christian learns this quote. It’s a trinity quote. It encompasses the Father who loves us, the Son who died for us and the Holy Spirit who comes to us when we believe. The part you may want to take special notice of is the “whoever” which includes every one of us with no exclusions. He comes into your heart and you are placed in His!!!

Why did God create me ???

“God made me to know Him, to love Him and to serve Him in this world so I can be happy with Him in the next.” That was the first lesson I learned as a 5 year old child in Sunday school. I still think it’s a valid answer. But I believe now as an adult another correct answer is “I have loved you with an everlasting love”-Jeremiah 31:3. God loves us with an everlasting love, we are His creation, made in His image. He knew us before we were knit into our mother’s womb. He is Love! It’s not just an attribute it is who He is.

Joy stolen

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Psalms 118:24 — “This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

It’s easy to have your joy stolen from you. You begin the day with good intentions and hopefully prayer too, then somehow things go south. The crock-pot doesn’t work, you drop the bag of almond slivers from Sam’s Club and watch as they spread across the floor, you’re missing the needed ingredients for your recipe and the meat looks like another day in the refrigerator won’t be an option. The phone call you are dreading to make for the fire department in order to solve a problem goes further south. And to top it all off  you are entertaining some folks from church and you’re embarrassed because the whole house smells like smoke from a mishap on the stove over a week before.  It’s not an accident. These are contrived to steal the joy that God wants us to have as His children. Our Pastor tells us there is an ongoing war for our souls.  God is all Love, Goodness and Light and He does allow us to be tested. How else will we develop spiritual muscles? Through tiny battles we gain strength, godly character and perseverance. God works all things together for our good! So if anyone is looking for an explanation of what’s happening look no further. We are indeed at war too. The war that is raging in the spiritual realm has its overflow in our lives. Taking up our sword, the word of God, the Bible, it’s the only rational solution. When things head south, start reading!

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”                -Hebrews 12:1-3

 

Jesus is the Light

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said,”I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” ...John 8:12

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Jesus once again addressed them: “I am the world’s Light. No one who follows me stumbles around in darkness. I provide plenty of light to live in.”  ………………..John 8:12 The Message  …Eugene H. Peterson

This is a quote from Eugene H. Peterson better known as Pastor Pete.  “American culture is probably the least Christian culture that we’ve ever had, because it’s so materialistic and it’s so full of lies. The whole advertising world is just intertwined with lies, appealing to the worst instincts we have. The problem is, people have been treated as consumers for so long they don’t know any other way to live.”

This is the light that God provides to whoever will choose to follow Him. It’s the knowledge of the minefields in our paths. They are everywhere and disguised. As a nation we are being swallowed up by lying people with companies whose only concern is making money for themselves. The children of Satan will never honor truth or the consumer. People get sucked into so many scams and lies and lives are being destroyed. But with God as our leader, they can be sidestepped! He’s the light that shows us the way through it all. He sees the pitfalls in our lives, in our jobs and in our community service projects, that only Jesus, who offers peace, can solve. Some days I feel like hibernating from the world. But it’s not an option.  I spent a lot of money for a much needed water tank for the fire department and was told it would arrive within the next 7 to 10 days because it was indeed in stock. Here I am – 4 weeks later no water tank no explanation and no apology. And I’m told I can’t get my money back either. This is not the America I was raised in.  Plastic-Mart is the company I’m dealing with for the Arroyo City Fire Department. I’m feeling terrible that we still don’t have the tank and I can’t even offer the board a date when it will arrive. Please pray for these people and me too! My first reaction was to get frustrated and angry. Upon reflection: “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.” …1 Thessalonians 5:15.