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Archive for December, 2013

There is nothing that is so calculated to promote holiness as the realization that we are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, that our destiny is certain and secure, that nothing can prevent it. Realizing that, we purify ourselves even as He is pure, and we feel that there is no time to waste. That is the way to live the Christian life!

Do not turn it into a law, but realize that you have received the Holy Spirit. Then work out this theme. Your Father is watching over you. He is looking after you — yes, let ms use scriptural language — He is jealous concerning you because you belong to Him. You belong to Christ, you are His brother. The Holy Spirit is dwelling in your very body and you are destined for glory.

— Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and Cure (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2002), 174

HT: FI

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Last Sunday, we read Colossians 1 as our Scripture Reading for the morning!  I love the exaltation of Jesus Christ in this passage. Paul exalts Jesus as preeminent and peerless.  Oh, that would we would pray for our own hearts and others to know more and more of Christ’s supremacy in all things!

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Here are a few Kindle deals you may want to check out: The Quiet Place by Nancy Leigh DeMoss ($2.99); A Life Observed by Devin Brown ($2.99); 50 People Every Christian Should Know by Warren Wiersbe ($3.99); The Scriptures Testify About Me edited by D.A. Carson ($3.99); Crazy Busy by Kevin DeYoung ($3.99), Resisting Gossip by Matthew Mitchell (3.99).    Running Scared by Ed Welch (free); Jesus On Every Page by David Murray ($2.99); Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart by J.D. Greear ($3.99); Saving Leonardo by Nancy Pearcey ($3.99); That You May Know by Christopher Bass ($4.99); Everyday Prayers by Scotty Smith (free); A Guide to Biblical Manhood by Randy Stinson & Dan Dumas ($3.49). R.C. Sproul’s series of books, Crucial Questions, are all available for free.
Also be sure to check out this list and this list for more great deals.

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Help for Praying Scripture

I have used and commend to you the use of this excellent resource by Tim Kerr:  Take Words with You.  Whether you are learning to pray Scripture or you feel somewhat comfortable doing so, this resource is a great tool.

Free PDF here or available on Kindle.

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Tis the season for making new year’s resolutions.  But here’s an excellent word from Paul Tripp that is worth pondering:

Well, it’s that time once again. It’s the fodder for blogs, magazine articles, TV shows, and way too many tweets. It is the time for the annual ritual of dramatic New Year’s resolutions fueled by the hope of immediate and significant personal life change.

But the reality is that few smokers actually quit because of a single moment of resolve, few obese people have become slim and healthy because of one dramatic moment of commitment, few people who were deeply in debt have changed their financial lifestyle because they resolved to do so as the old year gave way to the new, and few marriages have been changed by the means of one dramatic resolution.

Is change important? Yes, it is for all of us in some way. Is commitment essential? Of course! There is a way in which all of our lives are shaped by the commitments we make. But biblical Christianity — which has the gospel of Jesus Christ at its heart — simply doesn’t rest its hope in big, dramatic moments of change.

The fact of the matter is that the transforming work of grace is more of a mundane process than it is a series of a few dramatic events. Personal heart-and-life change is always a process. And where does that process take place? It takes place where you and I live everyday. And where do we live? Well, we all have the same address. Our lives don’t careen from big moment to big moment. No, we all live in the utterly mundane.

Read the rest of Trading One Dramatic Resolution for 10,000 Little Ones

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Thank you, Lord, for calling us into Your kingdom and family. May we be faithful vessels of the love your Spirit sheds abroad in our hearts. May we never be guilty of hiding the light of Your love under a bushel.

Your Word often reminds us of the inexorable law of sowing and reaping. Whatever we sow we reap, spiritually as well as physically. May we always sow to the Spirit and not to the flesh! We confess that we cannot do that without Your gracious enablement, and so we seek the aid of Your Spirit.

You have also taught us that the one who sows sparingly will reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will reap bountifully. May we always be liberal and open-handed in the sowing of good things. We’re reminded especially of our duty to share in all good things with those who have taught us the Word. Fill us with gratitude and with generosity; then open our hearts to be channels of blessing, especially to those who have so wonderfully blessed us.

Help us to be both wise and aggressive in taking advantage of the opportunities we have to do good to all, especially our own dear bothers and sisters in Christ. Harness our gifts and abilities—along with all our human faculties—and employ them for Your glory. Empower us to work harder, serve more faithfully, labor more diligently, and still press on—even when the trials and distractions of this life seem to offer compelling motives to turn away from the needs of others. Energize us by Your Spirit and keep us faithful to our calling.

You know, dear Lord, that our lives here on earth are full of burdens, heartaches, and disappointments. You permit those things to use them for our benefit. May we bear them with grace and courage. We thank You for the grace that sustains us in the midst of all our troubles. We pray that through the trials You send our way You will keep our hearts filled with that peace which surpasses all comprehension and guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Thank You that when we falter or fail, You always restore us. You give us grace upon grace without measure. You abundantly supply every need we have.

But we confess, Lord, that one of our greatest needs is for holiness. We are prone to sin, predisposed to folly, given to stubbornness, and easily confounded by our own self-will. Guide, guard, and sustain us to keep our feet from slipping, and keep us ever mindful of—and firmly anchored to—the solid foundation You have given us in Christ.

Give us a greater love for Him, so that all our service flows from hearts of gladness. Give us a holy longing to be free from sin in both mind and action. Whether Your plan for our immediate future entails prosperity or adversity, blessing or suffering, joy or sorrow—or a loving mixture of all those things—prepare us to respond with uprightness of heart and Christlike holiness. Your grace is sufficient for all these things, and Your truth strengthens us for all things.

We bow our hearts to worship You in Your Son’s blessed name. Amen.

–John MacArthur in At the Throne of Grace

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I have always loved the story of Corrie Ten Boom–ever since I read The Hiding Place as a teen.

On this day, 30 December 1944, the gates finally opened to release Ten Boom to a waiting train. There she discovered her ration card had either been lost or stolen and she travelled several days without food. When she finally reached the Netherlands, she was dizzy from hunger and could hardly stand.  .  . . Read more about it here

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