28. November 2013 09:31
Have you ever played hide and seek with your children. If it's a two year old there's a large part of your leg sticking out so they can find you easily. If they're a bit older you make it more challenging but you never let it get to the point where they get anxious because they can't find you. I think God the Father is the same.
In Jeremiah it says "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with your whole heart". But Jesus uses the parable of the lost coin and the parable of the last sheep to say that rather it is God earnestly seeking us. Even in the parable of the prodigal son the father is earnestly looking for the son and the son knows where home is. He just has to return.
So, I personally go with Jesus. If we need to seek God I think He will always let Himself be found. Sometimes after a bit of effort. And quite often not in the way we expected. He is God after all.
P.S. Just been to church and reminded that Jesus said that the Father is more than willing to give the Holy Spirit just for the asking (Luke 11:13)
31. October 2013 12:55
So I was sat in the house one night and I thought the Lord was prompting me to just ring a random number on the phone. So after a fair bit of hesitation I did. And I got through to the phone number of someone called Gram Seed. I didn't get him personally but I got his answering machine with a little poem on it saying he was out telling people about Jesus.
This was a man I'd first met when he was living on a bench drinking cider or whatever. He was wonderfully saved through the ministry of some young Christians I knew.
You can find out something about him on the Sowing Seeds Ministries website. He has an amazing testimony.
But what was also amazing was that I would reach his phone number by a random phone call. The odds of even reaching anyone you know at all are very very small. I met him again the other day which brought this back to mind. And he is still telling people about Jesus.
30. October 2013 19:59
I was a baby Christian. All was new - awesome, scary and challenging. All things Christian became interesting as they had never been before. I became fascinated by the Saints and other great men of God.
There was a Catholic priest named Padre Pio who had stigmata (the signs of the crucifixion) on his hands and feet. This was said to be a sign of his holiness. And somehow I knew that I was holy, as holy as any Saint. So I said "Lord, I'll have those". And within a week I had the marks on my wrists.
However, no-one ever noticed them. I think the Lord knew I wanted them for the wrong reason. Maybe He had a good laugh at me. Anyway after about six months I said "You might as well take them away Lord" and within a week there were gone.
Thinking about it now maybe He wanted to reassure me that I was holy in the midst of doubts and anxieties. And of course I am, but entirely because of Jesus and the Cross.
P,S. Padre Pio was also said to have the gift of bi-location so if any of you see me in two different places at once let me know.
1. October 2013 17:22
I would have said He got angry with the moneylenders in the temple but the word used there is not angry but zealous.
The one time where it is mentioned that Jesus got angry is in Mark 3 (NKJV)
And He entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a withered hand. So they watched Him closely, whether He would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse Him. And He said to the man who had the withered hand, “Step forward.” Then He said to them, “Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they kept silent. And when He had looked around at them with anger, being grieved by the hardness of their hearts, He said to the man,“Stretch out your hand.” And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored as whole as the other.
It is possible (although I don't like doing it) to look at this from the Pharisees' point of view. The warnings about and penalties for doing any kind of work on the Sabbath are very serious (Exodus 31:12-17). Also why couldn't he be healed the next day? What was one more day? Then the man could have been healed and all the proprieties satisfied. They saw themselves and portrayed themselves as reasonable people.
But what was being covered up and what grieved and angered Jesus was their hardness of heart.
I definitely see many 'reasonable' people like that in the world and more than a few in the church. And of course this might be another 'get the log out of your own eye' situation. So maybe I'd better start by asking the Lord to soften my own heart.
27. September 2013 11:08
Our advocate is Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.
Suppose you owed a lot of money, say £100,000 (That's a lot for me but choose your own amount). And suppose you had a rich and powerful friend who paid it off for you and also paid extra, say £200,000.
Now suppose your former creditor comes to you and says you owe them money. Will you not got to your friend and say "Didn't you pay that back for me?". What will your rich and powerful friend do? Will he not go to your former creditor and say "I paid that back and more besides. Get out of here and do not show your face again." Or words to that effect.
Jesus has paid (and more than paid) for all our sins past, present, and future no matter how bad they were. If Satan or anyone he's working through tries to tell you otherwise take it straight to the Father and say "Weren't all my sins paid for by Jesus through the Cross?".
I think I might take my own advice and try this myself.
27. August 2013 13:29
An awesome, awesome, testimony which is from the Bethel podcast of August 18th. You can maybe still get it there or listen to it below.
14. August 2013 23:34
This is a more recent testimony. My ex-wife (with whom I thought I'd made a lot of progress towards reconciliation) had just told me she'd found someone else. I was with her and my children (grown-up) out for a walk. I was feeling low, totally crushed really. Actually I wanted God to throw a few thunderbolts around. Not just at her but at others who'd encouraged and supported her in this.
We stopped at an ice-cream shop and everyone was getting cones or tubs with flakes in. I only had small change in my pocket so I just went for a tub (no flake). I had a spoonful of ice-cream, looked up to chat with my daughter, looked down again and there was a flake in my tub.
I think now that the Lord was telling me He loved me. Maybe I wasn't going to get my thunderbolts but His love was still there for me.
Also, I had been praying recently before then that I'd like to see some creative miracles. It was not quite what I expected but it was an answer to that too.
14. August 2013 23:23
I think this was the first winter after I'd been saved. I'd been reading my bible a lot and I came across a phrase: The sun shines on the righteous. I think I sort of realised I was righteous even though the condemnation I was receiving was trying to tell me otherwise.
Anyway, this seemed to me the sunniest winter ever. Everywhere I went the sun seemed to be shining. I got really used to it. Then one morning I woke up and it was torrential rain. So I said to the Lord: What happened to 'The sun shines on the righteous'? And I thought He said: Go to Guisborough.
So I went and got on a bus to Guisborough which is about 10 miles away. I got on in torrential rain and I got out in glorious sunshine. So I think this was Jesus telling me that I was righteous. Of course that's not because of anything I've done or not done but because of Him and the victory of the cross.
10. August 2013 17:11
When you have a dog one of the things to get it to do is to look into your eyes and do it steadily for a number of seconds/minutes. At first the dog doesn't want to do this and keeps looking away but it's worthwhile to persist. If you can build this level of trust you can get it so that it always looks to you before it does anything. So it never just dashes off and does something stupid.
Do you think Christ is looking at us in the same way. But we daren't look up. Because we can't believe we're accepted, loved, forgiven. Let's keep glancing at Him and see if we can deepen our level of trust.
5. August 2013 03:23
This too is from my early days as a Christian. I thought the Lord was telling me to go to Skelton a village about 15 miles from where I live. I replied that I only had change in my pocket and no other funds. He seemed to be insisting so I thought I could at least go to the bus station and find out what the bus fare was. I asked the driver and the single fare was exactly the amount of change I had. So I got on the bus slightly apprehensive as to why I was going and how I was going to get back.
When I got to Skelton as soon as my feet touched the ground (and not before) I thought of someone who lived there. When I went to see her it was obvious she needed someone to chat to about a few different things. So I guess the Lord sent me to listen and pray and of course she lent me the money to catch the bus back.