Tag Archives: mountain

Coming Down From The Mountain

 

Can You Come Down From the Mountain?

From: My Utmost For Highest Highest

While you have the light, believe in the light . . . —John 12:36

We all have moments when we feel better than ever before, and we say, “I feel fit for anything; if only I could always be like this!” We are not meant to be. Those moments are moments of insight which we have to live up to even when we do not feel like it. Many of us are no good for the everyday world when we are not on the mountaintop. Yet we must bring our everyday life up to the standard revealed to us on the mountaintop when we were there.

Never allow a feeling that was awakened in you on the mountaintop to evaporate. Don’t place yourself on the shelf by thinking, “How great to be in such a wonderful state of mind!” Act immediately— do something, even if your only reason to act is that you would rather not. If, during a prayer meeting, God shows you something to do, don’t say, “I’ll do it”— just doit! Pick yourself up by the back of the neck and shake off your fleshly laziness. Laziness can always be seen in our cravings for a mountaintop experience; all we talk about is our planning for our time on the mountain. We must learn to live in the ordinary “gray” day according to what we saw on the mountain.

Don’t give up because you have been blocked and confused once— go after it again. Burn your bridges behind you, and stand committed to God by an act of your own will. Never change your decisions, but be sure to make your decisions in the light of what you saw and learned on the mountain.

At work

Genesis 37:5-11Genesis 42:1-6
Since Joseph was governor of all Egypt and in charge of selling grain to all the people, it was to him that his brothers came. When they arrived, they bowed before him with their faces to the ground (Genesis 42:6).

Read Proverbs 13:1-12. Everyone desires to see dreams fulfilled. What connection might there be between the instruction in verses Proverbs 13:1-11 and the truth found in verseProverbs 13:12?

When have you felt that God didn’t come through for you in fulfilling one of your dreams? How might God have been at work even in this seeming failure?

A group of us were sharing dinner and then we gave testimonies about a God who loves His people enough to speak His dreams into their hearts. We heard of an apartment complex for single mothers. A wedding barn and a Christian campground. A new local church being established. Common to all was the desire that God’s name would be made great through each respective leap of faith.

Uncertain about believing in a God who can’t be seen with physical eyes, listening to a voice we can’t record, and following a hand we cannot tangibly touch, we can make faith nothing more than a collection of dry terms as we hunker down in a predictable life. More than something we know or talk about, however, faith must be lived out.

Consider the hall of faith in Hebrews 11:1-40. They built, conceived, offered, promised, blessed, spoke, refused, chose, left, went, overthrew, ruled, received, shut, quenched, escaped, suffered, died. Refusing safety, those who truly believed in God moved in incredible ways—following God to points beyond whatever felt safe and comfortable.

Stepping out into the unknown isn’t easy. Some days it’s downright frightening. Scripture doesn’t give us an exact reason for Joseph’s forthrightness in sharing the dream God had given him. It only details the outcome: rejection, isolation, and injustice. But for Joseph—and for us—the cost of faith pales in comparison to the fulfillment of God’s promise (Genesis 46:5-7Joshua 24:32Psalm 105:19).

Believing what God has spoken doesn’t guarantee an easy journey, but it does give us a front-row seat to watch Him at work. For “God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished” (Philippians 1:6).

What’s In The Name?

From: Getmorestrength.org.
“You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.” Exodus 20:7

There are a lot of fun events associated with being a pastor. And while great food at church dinners and getting invited to cool events with people in your church are near the top of the list, there may be nothing that quite compares to sharing some great moments with people — like the birth of babies. But in the joy of it all, there is a problem.

When you arrive at the hospital, you encounter a weary, but thrilled, couple who hand you this tightly wrapped little bundle and then impose on you a serious ethical dilemma. Of course, you are supposed to say, “Oh, my goodness, what a pretty little girl,” or “What a handsome little boy!” The reality is that I’ve never seen a child fresh out that looks anything like handsome or pretty. (Come to think of it, I have seenthree really beautiful babies.)

But once I get past the ethical dilemma by saying something like, “My, isn’t she precious,” the conversation ultimately morphs into an easier realm of interaction regarding the child’s name: “What’s the baby’s name?” . . . “That’s a great name. What does it mean?” The answers vary:

“Oh, it’s his grandfather’s name.”

“Her name means ‘Father’s delight’” or,

“We have no idea; we just chose it from a baby book!”

For most of us, names are relatively insignificant. They are easily changed into nicknames and serve basically to distinguish us from Bob or Ted. But if we look at God’s view of names in the same way, we may have trouble understanding what the big deal is about God’s name. Why would He include the importance of His name in His top-10 list of “Thou Shalt Nots”? How could diminishing His name rank up there with murder, stealing, and adultery?

It doesn’t take much digging through the Bible to realize that names are important to God. Think about Genesis, when God was often giving new names to the main characters—Abram became Abraham, Sarai became Sarah, Jacob became Israel. Each change signaled a statement from God about that individual’s character and his or her place in His plan. It wasn’t about God giving a nickname, it was about God assigning identity and worth to these individuals through the meaning of their name.

Most importantly, names are one of God’s key means of revealing His own identity and worth. He reveals His identity when He tells Moses that He is named “Yahweh,” which means, “I Am.” It means that He is eternally existent. He also identifies Himself as “Elohim,” the Almighty God, the God of great power. His names are who He is, not just what we call Him.

God’s names also describe His worth. You may be familiar with names like “Jehovah-Jireh,” meaning that He is the God who will provide. Or “El-Shaddai,” which means that He is completely sufficient. There are, in fact, 210 different names of God throughout Scripture, adding incredible richness and depth to our understanding of God’s identity, worth, and character.

Which is exactly why He takes it so seriously when we degrade His name by using it as though it weren’t sacred and lowering it to mere casual conversation as though it were ordinary. The exclamation, “Oh my God” should be an urgent prayer, not a verbal exclamation point. When we lower the name of God to drag it through a moment of anger or to use it to intimidate or manipulate, we have taken God Himself and lowered Him from His holy position. His name is intrinsically locked into who He is and what He is like. To put it simply, when we hit on His name, we have hit on Him. No wonder He is offended.

So, what’s in a name?  If you’re talking about God, the answer is everything!

Faith To Move Mountains

 

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Mountain Moving Faith

From: gatewaytoJesus.com

Author Unknown

A small congregation in the foothills of the Great Smokies built a new sanctuary on a piece of land willed to them by a church member. Ten days before the new church was to open, the local building inspector informed the pastor that the parking lot was inadequate for the size of the building. Until the church doubled the size of the parking lot, they would not be able to use the new sanctuary.

Unfortunately, the church with its undersized parking lot had used every inch of their land except for the mountain against which it had been built. In order to build more parking spaces, they would have to move the mountain out of the back yard.

Undaunted, the pastor announced the next Sunday morning that he would meet that evening with all members who had “mountain-moving faith”. They would hold a prayer session asking God to remove the mountain from the back yard and to somehow provide enough money to have it paved and painted before the scheduled opening dedication service the following week.

At the appointed time, 24 of the congregation’s 300 members assembled for prayer. They prayed for nearly three hours. At ten o’clock the pastor said the final “Amen”. “We’ll open next Sunday as scheduled,” he assured everyone. “God has never let us down before, and I believe He will be faithful this time too.”

The next morning as he was working in his study there came a loud knock at his door. When he called “come in”, a rough looking construction foreman appeared, removing his hard hat as he entered.

“Excuse me, Reverend. I’m from Acme Construction Company over in the next county. We’re building a huge new shopping mall over there and we need some fill dirt. Would you be willing to sell us a chunk of that mountain behind the church? We’ll pay you for the dirt we remove and pave all the exposed area free of charge, if we can have it right away. We can’t do anything else until we get the dirt in and allow it to settle properly.”

The little church was dedicated the next Sunday as originally planned and there were far more members with “mountain-moving faith” on opening Sunday than there had been the previous week!


 

This is Jesus just checking in today

Author Unknown

A minister passing through his church in the middle of the day, decided to pause by the altar and see who had come to pray.

Just then the back door opened, a man came down the aisle.

The minister frowned as he saw the man hadn’t shaved in a while.

His shirt was kinda shabby and his coat was worn and frayed.

The man knelt, he bowed his head, then rose and walked away.

In the days that followed, each noon time came this chap,

Each time he knelt just for a moment, a lunch pail in his lap.

Well, the minister’s suspicions grew, with robbery a main fear,

He decided to stop the man and ask him, “What are you doing here?”

The old man said, he worked down the road. Lunch was half an hour.

Lunchtime was his prayer time, for finding strength and power.

“I stay only moments, see, because the factory is so far away;

As I kneel here talking to the Lord, this is kinda what I say:

“I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, LORD, HOW HAPPY I’VE BEEN, SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHER’S FRIENDSHIP AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.

DON’T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY, BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERYDAY. SO, JESUS, THIS IS JIM CHECKING IN TODAY.”

The minister feeling foolish, told Jim, that was fine.

He told the man he was welcome to come and pray just anytime.

Time to go, Jim smiled, said “Thanks.” He hurried to the door.

The minister knelt at the altar, he’d never done it before.

His cold heart melted, warmed with love, and met with Jesus there.

As the tears flowed, in his heart, he repeated old Jim’s prayer:

“I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, LORD, HOW HAPPY I’VE BEEN, SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHER’S FRIENDSHIP AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.

I DON’T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY, BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERYDAY. SO, JESUS, THIS IS ME CHECKING IN TODAY.”

Past noon one day, the minister noticed that old Jim hadn’t come.

As more days passed without Jim, he began to worry some.

At the factory, he asked about him, learning he was ill.

The hospital staff was worried, but he’d given them a thrill.

The week that Jim was with them, brought changes in the ward.

His smiles, a joy contagious. Changed people, were his reward.

The head nurse couldn’t understand why Jim was so glad, when no flowers, calls or cards came, not a visitor he had.

The minister stayed by his bed, he voiced the nurse’s concern:

No friends came to show they cared. He had nowhere to turn.

Looking surprised, old Jim spoke up and with a winsome smile; “the nurse is wrong, she couldn’t know, that in here all the while everyday at noon He’s here, a dear friend of mine, you see, He sits right down, takes my hand, leans over and says to me:

“I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, JIM, HOW HAPPY I HAVE BEEN, SINCE WE FOUND THIS FRIENDSHIP, AND I TOOK AWAY YOUR SIN.

ALWAYS LOVE TO HEAR YOU PRAY, I THINK ABOUT YOU EACHDAY,

AND SO JIM, THIS IS JESUS CHECKING IN TODAY.”


 

My Attorney

Author Unknown

After living what I felt was a “decent” life, my time on earth came to the end. The first thing I remember is sitting on a bench in the waiting room of what I thought to be a court house.

The doors opened and I was instructed to come in and have a seat by the defense table.

As I looked around I saw the “prosecutor.” He was a villainous looking gent who snarled as he stared at me. He definitely was the most evil person I have ever seen.

I sat down and looked to my left and there sat My Attorney, a kind and gentle looking man whose appearance seemed so familiar to me,I felt I knew Him.

The corner door flew open and there appeared the Judge in full flowing robes. He commanded an awesome presence as He moved across the room I couldn’t take my eyes off of Him.

As He took His seat behind the bench, He said, “Let us begin.”

The prosecutor rose and said,

“My name is Satan and I am here to show you why this man belongs in hell.”

He proceeded to tell of lies that I told, things that I stole, and In the past when I cheated others. Satan told of other horrible Perversions that were once in my life and the more he spoke, the further down in my seat I sank. I was so embarrassed that I couldn’t look at anyone, even my own Attorney, as the Devil told of sins that even I had completely forgotten about.

As upset as I was at Satan for telling all these things about me, I was equally upset at My Attorney who sat there silently not Offering any form of defense at all. I know I had been guilty of those things, but I had done some good in my life – couldn’t that at least equal out part of the harm I’d done?

Satan finished with a fury and said, “This man belongs in hell, he is guilty of all that I have charged and there is not a person who can prove otherwise.”

When it was His turn, My Attorney first asked if He might approach the bench. The Judge allowed this over the strong objection of Satan, and beckoned Him to come forward. As He got up and started walking, I was able to see Him in His full splendor and majesty. I realized why He seemed so familiar; this was Jesus representing me, my Lord and my Savior.

He stopped at the bench and softly said to the Judge, “Hi, Dad,” and then He turned to address the court.

“Satan was correct in saying that this man had sinned, I won’t deny any of these allegations. And, yes, the wage of sin is death, and this man deserves to be punished.”

Jesus took a deep breath and turned to His Father with outstretched arms and proclaimed, “However, I died on the cross so that this person might have eternal life and he has accepted Me as his Savior, so he is Mine.”

My Lord continued with, “His name is written in the book of life and no one can snatch him from Me. Satan still does not understand yet. This man is not to be given justice, but rather mercy.”

As Jesus sat down, He quietly paused, looked at His Father and said, “There is nothing else that needs to be done. I’ve done it all.”

The Judge lifted His mighty hand and slammed the gavel down. The following words bellowed from His lips..

“This man is free.” The penalty for him has already been paid in full. Case dismissed.”

As my Lord led me away, I could hear Satan ranting and raving, “I won’t give up, I will win the next one.” I asked Jesus as He gave me my instructions where to go next, “Have you ever lost a case?”

Christ lovingly smiled and said, “Everyone that has come to Me and asked Me to represent them has received the same verdict as you, ……. Paid In Full.