Don't be afraid to ask God for something. Those of you that have children, would you want them to be afraid to ask you for something? You are also God's children, so ask God for what you want and what you need. What's the worst He could say? No? You don't lose anything b/c before you asked you didn't have it anyway. So... all you can do is GAIN something by God saying, 'YES!'
I don't want to wear a facade or a mask. I want to be authentic, genuine, and real. Jesus did not hold anything back or hide anything, and I don't either. I want to seriously show genuine care for other people, no matter what and no matter who they are. That's what Jesus did and that is what I am going to do. I really do care about YOU and want everybody including YOU to be saved and make it to Heaven. I don't care what you think you might have DONE in your life, nothing can separate you from the love of God. God still loves you, even if you are Adolph Hitler, Sadamm Hussein, or Osam Bin Laden. It doesn't matter what RELIGION you are. I don't agree with all of the people that want to damn and condemn Muslims b/c others in their religion terrorized our country. How about we show the heart of God and forgive them and love them, b/c that is the ONLY way that we are going to be able to have a chance to win them to Jesus Christ. If we condemn them all the time, then what better are we than them? I believe with all of my heart that if Jesus Christ Himself was around when we got attacked by terrorists, He would have forgiven them, ESPECIALLY the ones that are still around that have not attacked us, He would definitely not have condemned them for something they haven't done. Because He said LOVE YOUR ENEMIES. Why did He say that? And we always think of our enemies as a neighbor who has wronged us or a stranger who has wronged us, but we never stop to think about the terrorists and the extreme Muslims that hate us with a life consuming passion. If we LOVED them as much as they HATE us, we would be the ones at peace.
Take this whole world, my career, my possesions, even my friends and family away from me, but give me Jesus Christ, and I will still be the happiest man alive. If I can just follow Job and in the midst of every part of life being chaos and destruction, still love God and trust that He will NEVER leave me, forsake me, or even talk bad about me, but love me unconditionally. Maybe i should take some of my own advice and regardless of how i feel, what i'm going through, or what is happening in my life, still consistently show true authentic genuine joy that the Holy Ghost gives me everyday. In the book of Job, Job had EVERYTHING taken from him, his business, his possessions, house, cars, animals, and even his family and kids were taken away from him. YET, through the storm and the mud and the mire and the pain and the sickness and the discouragement and the depression and the darkness, THROUGH all of it he STILL said that no matter what happens, he doesn't have ANYTHING to lose as long as he has God. He came into this world with nothing and he definitely knew that he couldn't take anything from this world with him into eternity when he dies, except for God, which is the one thing in life that can never be lost b/c God will NEVER leave or forsake us. It is only when we let the circumstances of life and the lies of people's persuasive deceptions that will make US decide to leave God. We have to hold on to God's hand, if we are to weak to walk or even to weak to crawl, as long as we are still holding on to God's unchanging hands, He will CARRY us until we gain our strength back to start walking with Him again. God LOVES it when we lean and rely on Him for things, b/c then He can do His job of providing, protecting, and loving us.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
If we were obsessed and consumed with LOVE, we would be able to handle and withstand ANYTHING! If we took this scripture in 1 Corinthians 13 and took 1 word per day that love is and applied ourselves to genuinely be that one word the whole day, I believe that we would be able to love anybody at anytime and we would also be lovable by anybody, and therefore, since God IS Love, be able to win anybody to Jesus Christ through His love.
I'm tired of not being compassionate. Tired of keeping this great of salvation to myself, celebrating it with others of like faith after every Sunday service. Tired of going to bed at night knowing that there are over 5 billion people in this world that are lost because I haven't told them about Jesus, because I'm too b...usy celebrating my own blessings with others who are just as blessed. Tired of when I do go outreaching I settle for an answer of "thanks for the information" becuase i'm in a hurry to go do something else. I don't want to be counted as 1 of the 38 men in 38 years in John 5:1-9 that were so wrapped up in their own miracle or blessing that I ignore the cry of those that don't have the ability to come to church themselves. I don't want those people to have to wait for Jesus Himself to come help after 38 years of misery, when I could have helped him myself. It's time to act like I've got the power Jesus gave me to do these things in Acts 1:8. Right now I am Fully Mission Capable but I am failing the mission. It's time to go.
I finally understand what it means to see the results of a sacrifice. On Friday night, after the Youth Service, we had to take Matthias, our oldest son who is 4 years old, to the Emergency Room b/c of a 104 fever and a bad headache that made him not move. We stayed there until 2:30 am and didn't get into bed until 3:30 am. We had outreach scheduled for 10 am Saturady and I didn't know if I was going to be able to make it with such little sleep. I prayed that if God wanted me at outreach that he would give me the energy no matter how much sleep i got. Well, I got up around 9am and I sacrificed wanting to sleep so I could go to outreach. When I showed up, it was only the outreach director and his family with one other person there and that was all that showed up. I went with the outreach director and the 1st door we knocked on was only 2 doors down from the church. We ended up witnessing to the lady there for almost an hour. She was so interested that she wanted a Bible Study and wanted to come to church. Overall, we only had time to visit 5 or so houses that answered and 3 of them were interested in coming to church. The rest of that day me and my family cleaned the church, but we didn't finish because we were so exhausted. So we came back early on Sunday morning to finish the job about 4 hours before service started, then we prayed. I was still tired in my body, but did it anyway. When the service started, i sacrificed how tired I was and 4 people, all from the same family received the gift of the Holy Ghost in the service today. WITHOUT A SACRIFICE, THERE CAN BE NO FIRE!!! and yes, i know that obedience is better than sacrifice, but obedience only makes yourself better, sacrifice makes OTHERS better, and that's more exciting!!!