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Love You Swore - John Mark McMillian
“Harbor me in the eye of the storm. I’m holding on to the love Your swore.”
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Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.
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1 One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. 2 He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.
4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”
5 Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”
6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.
8 When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” 9 For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, 10 and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.
Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.
Most people look at this passage and focus on being, “Fishers of men.” This concept is great and absolutely true. It teaches us that following Jesus means we must share His message with all. It alludes to the Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20).
What I find to be more interesting is what Peter says in verse 5. “Then Simon answered, ‘Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” Peter let the nets down and brought back a huge number of fish. The words Peter chooses here are so amazing. He says because Jesus said so, he’ll do it.
This isn’t the only time Peter does something like this either. If we look at Matthew 14:22-29, we see Peter in a similar situation. This is the story we know of Jesus walking on water. Jesus tells the disciple to go ahead of Him in a boat. After a certain distance, Jesus appears to them. They are afraid because they thought He was a ghost. Peter said in verse 28, “’Lord if it is you,’ […] tell me to come out to you on the water.’ ‘Come,” he said. Then Peter got out of the boat and walked on water towards Jesus.”
Almost without any thought at all, Peter does what Jesus is saying.
There are so many times that God is telling us to do something but we don’t act on it. We feel like there needs to be a bigger sign. We say to God, “I don’t get it. Why do I have to do that? Why do you want me to do this?” Peter didn’t ask those things. He just did what Jesus told him to do with very little resistance.
Now, It’s okay to ask for signs, just look at Gideon for example (Judges 6:1-40). But how much greater is it when we do what God has asked us to do right away?
See, Peter has an advantage here: He’s literally hearing from the voice of God. Jesus was in the physical, talking to him. We don’t always have that same affirmation and it can be very difficult. But what I’m suggesting is that we trust ourselves a little more when we think we heard the voice of God. When there are big events, go ahead and ask for sign. But when God is talking to you to do something right in the now, listen and act on what the LORD has told you to do.
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Have you ever taken a piece of cake and then wanted more? I don’t know about you, but I do it all the time. This is how it goes down:
Cake Giver: Hey, Ruben. Do you want a piece of ice cream cake?
Ruben: Yeah, sure! It’s my favorite! But not a big piece, I’m kinda full from dinner.
You think that’s where it ends but it’s not. You’d just eat your piece of cake and that’s it right? WRONG! You ate that cake as fast as a bullet train! Not only that, you’re eyeing down everyone else’s cake. You want more and it’s killing you to just sit there while everyone else eats theirs. You’ll say in your head, “Those greedy, jerks! They don’t even know how good they have right now! Eating their cakes so smugly. There are starving kids in Africa guy that would love a piece of that cake! There are starving kid right here that would love a piece of cake!”
But you remain humble. You just sit there politely while everyone eats. Then the person giving out cake notices you’ve eaten all of yours and are looking uneasy. That situation goes like this: While you’re nervously twitching the cake giver goes,
Cake giver: Ruben, are you okay?
Ruben: Yeah, I’m fine. Why?!
Cake Giver: Looks like there somethings wrong. You’re eyeing down everyone and are mumbling threats under your breath.
Ruben: I’M FINE!
Cake Giver: All right. We have some extra cake; do you want a piece?
God is a lot like this. You have a piece of Him and now you want so much more. When you honestly search Him, He becomes the greatest thing that has ever happened in your life.
And some of you are going to sit there and think, “I want Cake. Cake sounds delirious. Where can I find Cake?” Let me tell you, cake is everywhere. Especially in His Word. And this is best Cake of all! This Cake died for your sins. This Cake is made from bread and blood! Not literal cake. Symbolic Cake; Jesus. We’re talking about Jesus for those who didn’t get my analogy.
In Deuteronomy 4:29 it says, “But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
Eat the Good Cake and seek after God. He wants you to know Him.
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In Matthew chapter 5, Jesus is teaching on the Mountain. This is know as one of the most famous speeches in our history; not just as Christians but as the human race. One of the key concepts that Jesus was speaking about was oaths. He states the following:
“Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ’ Do no break your oath, but keep the oaths you have made to the Lord’. But I tell you, do not swear at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throng; or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do no swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes’, and your, ‘No’, ‘No; anything beyond this comes from evil” (Matthew 5:33-37 NIV).
This is something that has become a revelation for me. I read it about two years ago and thought, “Wow, this is so true”. Then put it in the back of my mind and never really recognized it.
About a year ago, a friend of mine asked me if I wanted to start a prayer group with him. He was super excited about it because he wanted to connect all of the people he knew and he believed to have strong faith together. He wanted to meet at his house and have a whole bunch of people for fellowship, worship, and prayer. I was not nearly as excited as he was. I didn’t want to make him feel bad because he was in such ecstasy over it. So I agreed to do this just to appease him.
When it came time to meet, I would constantly blow him off. I would think of any excuse that could get me out of it. Work, school, lack of gas. Some of the times I actually did have things to do but most of the time it was because I just wasn’t as into it as he was. Eventually he stopped asking.
Later that year, I wanted to do a skit with someone in my church for Father’s Day. I was super excited about it because I was going to invite my dad, who is not saved, to come and see it, hoping it would plant some more seeds in his heart. The guy I asked said he would do it and I was super excited. I practiced my lines almost everyday. When it came about time to do the skit, the guy kept telling me he was busy. I was so desperate to do this skit that I told him that I would spend a whole day with him, rehearsing, to get ready for it. He told me that it wasn’t a good idea and that maybe we could do it next Father’s Day.
Needless to say, I was extremely upset over it. A deep bitterness grew in my heart. It took a while to deal with it but I finally brought it to God and the anger went away.
Now, I don’t know if he was actually busy or not, but when I was thinking about it the other day, I realized that what I did to a friend of mine happened exactly the same way to me. Matthew 5:37 immediately came to mind. I realized I should never have made a promise I knew I wasn’t going to keep but I did it anyway and it came back to me in the same fashion.
I’m not saying that God did it on purpose specifically to teach me the lesson I so promptly ignore. Maybe He did, maybe He didn’t. I’ll be sure to ask Him when we meet Face to face, but I did learn from it. False promises can really hurt someone. We, both a people and more specifically Christians, have to be carefully what we say so we don’t hurt others, intentionally or unintentionally.
I Need Words—David Crowder Band
I need language large as
This longing inside
And I need a voice
Bigger than mine
And I need a song to sing You
That I’ve yet to find
I need You
Oh, I need You
I need You
Oh, I need You
To be here now
To be here now
To hear me now
To hear me now
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Do not let your heart envy sinners, but always be zealous for the fear of the LORD.
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We live in a society that will literally curse the name of God. They will shut down when it comes to anyone saying anything with a religious connotation. We live in a world that will shot down a common expression like “God bless you” when someone sneezes because they don’t believe in God.
I’m sick and tired of a society that only wants to believe in God when it’s convenient for them. When your boyfriend breaks up with you, you believe in God because you don’t want to hurt anymore. When you can’t pay your bills this month you want God to provide for you. When you lost a love one you want Him to comfort you. When you want help on a test in school you ask Him to give you supernatural knowledge of the subject. That’s when I’ll pray to God. When I’m in sheer desperation. Other than that, “who is God?” “Jesus is just a hispanic boys name.” “I believe we are all our own gods.”
It disgust me that people will even try to say that they believe in Jesus but don’t like the church.
“If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.” 1 John 4:20-21.
People that say that they love Jesus but hate the people that go to church directly sin against the Bible. It’s okay to have a certain distaste for someone and hopefully your praying that God can remove that from you because it’s not healthy to think like that, but one can’t say he or she hates all church-goers. They are the Body of Christ and that is disrespectful to the person you call Savior.
You can’t say you believe in Jesus and still have such an overwhelming desire to sin. You can’t say you love Jesus and want to drink all the time, or get high all the time, or want to watch pornography all the time.
“No one can server two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and mammon.” Matthew 6:24
When you are hurt, you want to believe in God. When you don’t like your situation you’ll go to a church-goer for help. Otherwise, “don’t bother with your religious garbage.” You love Jesus but don’t like abiding by His commands. That is a paradox I will never understand.
Jesus Culture | I Want To Know You
I stand before You, Awed by Your Majesty
Covered by Your mercy, Your blood has made me free
Draw me to You, and set my heart on fire
I want to Know,
Your my one desire
I give You my worship
All of my Passion
I give You my whole heart
All my devotion
Grace never ending, Your hands they carry me
Your body is broken for all the world to see
My heart is held by love so unconditional
You captivate me
You’re the lover of my soul
I give You my worship
All of my Passion
I give You my whole heart
All my devotion
Here I will bow down
Say that I need You
Here I will worship
Say that I love You
Oh how I love You
I want to know You
Let Your Spirit overwhelm me
Let Your Presence overtake my heart
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Gian Paul Gonzalez - All In
I know this guy! I’m friends with his younger brother!
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Heaven Come My Way - Abandon Kansas
“Heaven come my way, come my way. I’ll go through the storm if I can hear You say, ‘Help is on the way, on the way.’ It can’t be that far, take me to the stars.”
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Learn - Abandon Kansas
“Oh God I knew You somewhere before I left things undone Thereʼs so much to do before I go. Help me control the river of my soul.”
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