Friday, March 30, 2012

The Teaching of Adversity - Oswald Chambers

The Teaching of Adversity

"In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world"

—John 16:33

The typical view of the Christian life is that it means being delivered from all adversity. But it actually means being delivered in adversity, which is something very different. “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling . . .” (Psalm 91:1,10)— the place where you are at one with God.

If you are a child of God, you will certainly encounter adversities, but Jesus says you should not be surprised when they come. “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” He is saying, “There is nothing for you to fear.” The same people who refused to talk about their adversities before they were saved often complain and worry after being born again because they have the wrong idea of what it means to live the life of a saint.

God does not give us overcoming life— He gives us life as we overcome. The strain of life is what builds our strength. If there is no strain, there will be no strength. Are you asking God to give you life, liberty, and joy? He cannot, unless you are willing to accept the strain. And once you face the strain, you will immediately get the strength. Overcome your own timidity and take the first step. Then God will give you nourishment— “To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life . . .” (Revelation 2:7).

 If you completely give of yourself physically, you become exhausted. But when you give of yourself spiritually, you get more strength. God never gives us strength for tomorrow, or for the next hour, but only for the strain of the moment. 

Our temptation is to face adversities from the standpoint of our own common sense. But a saint can “be of good cheer” even when seemingly defeated by adversities, because victory is absurdly impossible to everyone, except God.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Am I double minded?

Q) How does one evaluate whether he is double-minded?

It isn't a matter of how much time we have spent in a church building,
how religious think we are.

ISAIAH 55:8 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your
ways my ways," declares the LORD.

With my graduated high school education and knowledge so far in God's
Word I'd like to compare it to how a potential Supreme Court justice
is evaluated. Questions are asked about what he believes about the
law, and then his previous decisions are evaluated for consistency
with regard to those beliefs.

Are our decisions consistent with our profession to make Jesus the
Lord of our life?

Please understand, I'm only speaking in general terms. If men
constantly used God's Word, in addition to worship, and using the
Sacraments, wouldn't they be reflected in the choices we make. A
single focus will show forth the fruit of repentance, works that
demonstrate the reality of our faith, a heart focus on Jesus. Works
won't save us, but they are a good indicator of a changed heart.

"They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being
abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate"
(Titus 1:16).

How well do our decisions line up with what we profess? May we be
single-minded through Christ!

This should come naturally from hearing the Word of God and keeping it Holy.

In my opinion it simply boils down to managing momentum that God set
in motion.God's Word and Sacraments are the tools and system to create, capture,
and sustain momentum for Christ! Let's not give up on them!

God's grace, and Gospel message is an amazing thing!

God Bless
Brian Arthur Lampe

Friday, March 23, 2012

Totally Committed to God?

Total commitment!

What is the definition? That is between you and God.

Here is something that may help us better connect to a definition: A hen and a pig came upon a church building and read the advertised sermon on the billboard out front, which read, “What can we do to help the poor?” Immediately the hen suggested they feed them bacon and eggs. The pig thought for a moment and said, “There is one thing wrong with feeding bacon and eggs to the poor. For you it only requires a contribution, but for me it requires total commitment!”

Jesus' command in Luke 10:27 to "love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind."

In our society most of us won't whole-heartily commit to anything unless there is a sense of personal value "something in it for me."

Do we make seeking God our daily priority?

Do actively knock on the door of Jesus by constantly using His Word to teach us, so we can make better use of time, talents, and treasures?

"Seek first the kingdom of God," or "Always abound in the work of the Lord," or "Set your mind on things above"

Just like it took time for me make up excuses for not being committed to God, it takes time to develop spiritual disciplines—Weekly worship, Bible study, journaling, praying,

What is total commitment? It's giving 100% of your heart, soul, and mind to God. It's passionately pursuing Him and His ways. It's reaching out despite the risk of rejection. It's abandoning what you want and obeying what God wants. It's a total surrender of yourself to Him through Christ!

Ephesians 2:8-9  For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—  not by works, so that no one can boast.

Wikipedia, defines Sola fide or "by faith alone" asserts God's pardon for guilty sinners is granted to and received through faith, conceived as excluding all "works", alone. All humanity, it is asserted, is fallen and sinful, under the curse of God, and incapable of saving itself from God's wrath and curse. But God, on the basis of the life, death, and resurrection of his Son, Jesus Christ alone (solus Christus), grants sinners judicial pardon, or justification, which is received solely through faith.

God was, has, and is committed to me. He first loved me, and still does even though I have neglected Him and His Word. That is a love I still can't wrap my thoughts around. Praise God for His mercy and patience. That's total commitment.

The First Article.
Of Creation.
I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.
What does this mean?--

I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my limbs, my reason, and all my senses, and still preserves them; in addition thereto, clothing and shoes, meat and drink, house and homestead, wife and children, fields, cattle, and all my goods; that He provides me richly and daily with all that I need to support this body and life, protects me from all danger, and guards me and preserves me from all evil; and all this out of pure, fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me; for all which I owe it to Him to thank, praise, serve, and obey Him. This is most certainly true.

The Second Article.
Of Redemption.

And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
What does this mean?-

I believe that Jesus Christ, true God, begotten of the Father from eternity, and also true man, born of the Virgin Mary, is my Lord, who has redeemed me, a lost and condemned creature, purchased and won [delivered] me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil, not with gold or silver, but with His holy, precious blood and with His innocent suffering and death, in order that I may be [wholly] His own, and live under Him in His kingdom, and serve Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence, and blessedness, even as He is risen from the dead, lives and reigns to all eternity. This is most certainly true.

The Third Article.
Of Sanctification.
I believe in the Holy Ghost; one holy Christian Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen.

What does this mean?-
I believe that I cannot by my own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord, or come to Him; but the Holy Ghost has called me by the Gospel, enlightened me with His gifts, sanctified and kept me in the true faith; even as He calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian Church on earth, and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one true faith; in which Christian Church He forgives daily and richly all sins to me and all believers, and at the last day will raise up me and all the dead, and will give to me and to all believers in Christ everlasting life. This is most certainly true.

So let me ask you again, are you totally committed to God?

Jesus forgives you if you are repentant. Today is a great day to begin!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Youthful Churches?

Lent is often thought of as a season of "No." We say no to steak,
chocolate or Facebook or TV or some other bad habit that we think
would be worth saying goodbye to for a few weeks.

But what if Lent was seen as the season of "Yes." What if the reason
for saying "No" to some of that stuff was really a reason to say "Yes"
to things that really matter -- to the things Jesus says "Yes" to?
What if Lent was the season to say "Yes" to a richer prayer life, a
deeper study of scripture, and more involvement to 
the ministry of youth in our church?

What if Lent was seen as a season to say "Yes" to real youth ministry,
by sharing our faith with young?

How does evaluating, re-evaluating, and mirco-evaluating
their ministry team plans, begin to mentor, and equip the young
saints of our Triune God? 

In the spirit of forward progress "ministry teams"  plans, programs,
and curriculums must be flexible and meet the needs of the saints.

How does anyone the needs if time is not spent with them? 

The primary importance is to bring glory to God in everything we do!

We should build on biblical principles instead of fads, hype, and shallow youth

Lets study the life of Christ in the gospels and watch however He
did ministry and mentored His disciples. Timothy, II Timothy, and
Titus. Watch what Timothy’s mentor taught him about leadership,
character, and ministry. 

It is not a quick fix or easy at the outset.

Click on the link below. This is the imperative only start for any
church to begin grow. "Creating Youthful Churches" Pastor David

Hang in there for the youth, Luther did! 

Brian Arthur Lampe
President CEO Ministries

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Our Battle's simply need Prayer

To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing.”Martin Luther King, Jr.

People are the leading cause of bad relationships, although certain species of cats rank a close second. 

There’s nothing like an unreasonable, angry, thickheaded person to leave you feeling unreasonable, angry, and thickheaded, which of course leads to someone having the coconuts to think that you’re unreasonable! 

Sometimes it feels as if life is a series of random encounters with irritable people. Trouble is, some of those irritable people go by the titles of Mom, son, husband, wife, friend, and especially our co-workers.

Q) How many of lives do you touch in a day, month, or a year? 

Interacting with others positively may improve it’s lasting effects and greatly impact others which will  expand your personal influence. The main reason your in the position of life right now is primarily based on our Heavenly Father.  

Acts 17:24-28

New International Version (NIV)
 24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. 25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. 26 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27 God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. 28 ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’[a] As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’[b]

Q) Are you using your influence in every opportunity to exemplify a positive influence for Christ? 

It’s unfortunate that the very relationships that can bring the most joy and fulfillment are also the ones that can cause the most anger and grief. It’s not that surprising to learn that we invest so much in our least important relationships and take those problems to heart. We often react negatively to the stress that comes from relationship challenges.

It’s easier to get angry than it is to work out a solution. Anger provides us with the self-satisfaction of knowing that we are the injured party. The drama involved in playing the victim card is supposed to bring all those involved to feel sorry for the one offended. It's best to simply give in, if they know whats good for them. 

The trouble is that anger ultimately proves destructive both to our relationships and to ourselves. For many of us, it’s become the first line of interpersonal defense. Often, emotional anger spills over into physical rage. The fact that terms like work place bully, road rage, or hostile work enviorment,  even exist proves that.

Anger can be combated and relationships with others improved, but most people need to learn how. There are a variety of ways to improve your relationships and reduce your anger levels. 

1) BLAME GAME - What we must do first is seek the origin of anger. Most do try and reason things out afterward, but the conclusion they seek is justification rather than TRUTH. They actually manipulate their on soul and believe that there has to be some reason, or some person, OTHER THAN THEMSELVES who is the cause for our anger.

In TRUTH … It is and always be US that allowed this plague of the mind and heart to enter. The simple reason we get angry is that we feel someone or something wronged US. 

Therefore, it is a SELFISH reaction.



2) Meditation on the Gospel message of Christ can be a calming technique for anger and it can help you set and attain relationship goals.

God Bless
Brian Arthur Lampe