Are you “quick”?

Posted: April 12, 2013 in general, prayer
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I was going to start by saying; “…as Americans we…”. But I decided to change it to “as Christians, we” are quick to judge, quick to talk about, quick to condemn, quick to avoid, quick to say, quick to rely on our own abilities, quick to elevate ourselves, quick to look down…and the list could go on and on. But often we are NOT quick to PRAY! And in case you’re thinking “what about you, Russell!”, let me be the first to say…prayer is usually not the first thing I turn to in time of need. But why? Prayer is the single most important thing we can do, the most powerful weapon we have and the most effective tool we can use. I just finished reading “The Circle Maker” by Mark Batterson. Here’s a quote to think about today. “The greatest moments in life are the miraculous moments when human weakness and divine power intersect…”

Hey…ever wonder what an echo does? Ever thought about its meaning? Echo: a sound heard again near its source after being reflected; any repetition or close imitation, as of the ideas or opinions of another; a person who reflects or imitates another.
Check out this parallel. “Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children”. (Ephesians 5:1 NLT)
It’s ONLY an ECHO AFTER it’s been “near its source” so it can be reflected!

Jesus was the ultimate echo of His Father!
John 5:19
19 So Jesus explained, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.

And now we get to be the echo of Christ the our world! But sometimes we are more focused on our problems than God’s promises.
Soo….try this: The next time you feel like your problems are bigger than God’s promises, “echo” God’s promises “to” your problem!
Of course the only way to do that is to become intimate with Father God! We have to deliberately touch Jesus!
Look at this example of one woman who deliberately touched Jesus!
Luke 8:43-48
43 A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding, and she could find no cure. 44 Coming up behind Jesus, she touched the fringe of his robe. Immediately, the bleeding stopped. 45 “Who touched me?” Jesus asked. Everyone denied it, and Peter said, “Master, this whole crowd is pressing up against you.” 46 But Jesus said, “Someone deliberately touched me, for I felt healing power go out from me.” 47 When the woman realized that she could not stay hidden, she began to tremble and fell to her knees in front of him. The whole crowd heard her explain why she had touched him and that she had been immediately healed. 48 “Daughter,” he said to her, “your faith has made you well…”
Will you deliberately touch the Father today?

Real hunger

Posted: March 13, 2013 in general
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What are you hungry for…right now? This moment. Depending on the time of day you might be hungry for Krispy Kreme (does it really matter what time?). I find myself hungry for “more”. Then I have to ask myself; “hungry for more of what?”. My spiritual side says; “hungry for more of You Lord!”. But if I’m honest, I may hungering for just something…anything…except God. But He is the ONLY THING that will ever truly satisfy! Our spiritual appetite also affects those in our life. So make sure you are hungering for “the”

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Chinese proverb: “If we don’t change our direction we’re likely to end up where we’re headed.” Not very “deep”…I know. But how true! So, the question is…and I have to ask myself; “Do I like where I’m headed?” If not, then it is definitely time for change. As a Christian, I have to decide whether or not I will take a stand for my faith in the face of opposition. I have made changes in my life…plenty of them. Some turned out to be a great decision. Other changes were the result of my lack of willingness to make a good decision (or any decision-hoping the situation would somehow magically “fix itself). Regardless of where you find yourself today…take just a few minutes in your otherwise over-committed day…and examine your life. Do like where you are headed? If not, you may want to consider CHANGE….

Quote  —  Posted: March 11, 2013 in Uncategorized
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So…how did you do yesterday? Did you try to pray without using words? Did you worship without singing or playing music? If you can answer “yes”….excellent! If not…why not? To be honest…I had a difficult time doing it myself! Just being honest… Are you and I more comfortable using words and music because it’s just become a habit? The most creative Being in the universe created us, created worship, created instruments, books, music, trees, people, babies, pets, relationships and weather…just to name a few. We should be in awe just from looking out at the world in which we live, because God created it for you and for me!

prayer and worship

Posted: March 5, 2013 in Uncategorized
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if you couldn’t speak and didn’t have music, could you still pray and worship the God we serve? my guess is that it would be difficult to break the habit of depending on words and sounds to pray and to worship. but isn’t it really about relationship…more than the words we say or the songs we sing? YES! A resounding YES! try it today. try praying to God without speaking…let your life BE a prayer. try worshipping without your iPod, iPhone, iPad or smartphone…let your life BE an expression of worship today! let’s see how different our lives would be AND how it would affect those we come in contact with today! PRAY! WORSHIP!

Being youth ministry for over 30 years offers a perspective that I am very grateful  for. I’ve seen the lives of young people changed dramatically. Some have learned how to make great choices that transform their life and propel them into greatness. Others, have made…no-so-great choices and they have suffered the consequences. Regardless, it is the responsibility of any concerned adult to do our absolute best to lead, guide, direct and be a positive example for this “next generation”. They are an amazing bunch! And they are worth fighting for!