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Family Christian

  • Sound Doctrine

    Posted on April 28, 2012 by Family Christian

    “He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.”
    Titus 1:9

     

    Doctrine is a belief system that is accepted as authoritative. For followers of Jesus Christ, the Bible contains Christian doctrine that is believed, understood, and lived. Doctrine is critical because what you believe can be the difference between heaven and hell; it is critical because it determines your behavior.  Doctrine is valuable because it provides structure around faith, bolstering and encouraging you toward a lifetime of growth and learning. Doctrine is not to be feared but accepted as a support for abundant living.

    Doctrine helps you understand what you believe in a logical fashion, so you in turn, can explain it to others inside and outside of the faith.  Yes, doctrine can be abused, used as a club to knock others into line. But doctrine is not designed to discourage, but to encourage. Doctrine is not meant to be an intimidator. Rather, it is designed to lovingly lead disciples toward the ways of God. Your motive for understanding and learning doctrine is that you can know God more deeply and intimately. Doctrine is not an end in itself. If your desire is to simply gain more knowledge then doctrine will work against your Christian maturity. Sound teaching also helps you discern false teachers.

    The Bible says, “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming” (Ephesians 4:14). Indoctrinate your children at an early age with God’s belief system so that they can begin lifelong learning. What better way to mold their tender and teachable hearts than with the doctrine of the Christian faith?
       
    Some of the doctrines of the Christian faith are the Deity of Christ, His death and resurrection for man’s redemption, and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the life of believers. God is your loving heavenly Father who judges fairly. Traditional tenets of the faith are the inerrancy of the Bible, the second coming of Christ, salvation by grace through faith in Christ, and the reality of heaven and hell. Other compelling truths are eternal rewards, God’s ownership of everything, and the power of prayer.

    Allow your mind and heart to marinate in these and other doctrines. Let them become the foundation of your belief and behavior. Read about them, learn about them, and let them give you confidence that God has laid out a logical and inviting explanation for living and dying. This applies equally to His followers and those who still need Christ. Be sure doctrine has been distilled into a life change for you. This is evidence of authenticity in disciples.

    Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples” (John 8:31b). The major teachings of the Christian faith are clear; camp out there and do not be confused over other distracting issues. Make sure your doctrine leads you to evangelism and discipleship as it exists for your encouragement and defense of the faith.  Above all, keep doctrine from feeding your pride and boring others. Use it wisely and do not abuse it.

    Taken from April 29th reading in the 365-day devotional book, “Seeking Daily the Heart of God”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: Humble disciples distill doctrinal teachings into personal life change. #doctrine #disciples

  • Love Strangers

    Posted on April 27, 2012 by Family Christian

    “He administers justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the stranger, giving him food and clothing. Therefore love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” Deuteronomy 10:18,19, NKJV

     

    Strangers can seem strange and distant, but they are still human beings created in the image of God. They may smell different, look odd, be eccentric, and speak unclearly, nevertheless their heart longs for encouragement and acceptance. It is out of a strange place that a person can find their heavenly Father and begin their journey of knowing Him. The Holy Spirit daily directs His disciples to be a conduit for a stranger’s salvation.

    Therefore, we have an opportunity every day to expose unfamiliar people to a picture of God’s grace. If they know Jesus, our act of kindness emboldens their belief. If faith living is foreign to the new acquaintance, our generous gratuity may solicit their soul to ask why. We love strangers, because we were all once strangers to Christ’s intimate love.
    Love goes to strange places, for strange people, so they are no longer strangers to God.

    “I was a father to the needy; I took up the case of the needy.” Job 29:16

    Do you rush across the path to an unfamiliar face, or do you look for divine encounters? Is your momentary prayer kept just for yourself, or do your prayers seek unknown souls? Hospitality and generosity for those who are without is your bridge to invite them into a relationship with you. Maybe a single adult just moved into your apartment complex or a new family visited your church for the first time; if so, see them as a candidate for your care. Your initiative to invade another’s aloneness illustrates Christ’s caring community.

    Remember the strange and uncomfortable feeling of being a stranger in a new place? Then look for those lost in their unfamiliar surroundings. A new mom may need your mentoring. A new employee may need your apprenticeship. A new Christian may need your discipleship. A new father may need your wisdom. Strangers will not remain strangers after you invest in their lives. Love welcomes guests as new friends.

    “For I [Jesus] was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in.” Matthew 25:35

    Prayer: Lord, who can I reach out to that is lost in their strange circumstance? 

    Related Readings: Leviticus 25:35; Job 31:32; Psalm 119:19; Hebrews 11:9

    Post/Tweet this today: Love goes to strange places, for strange people, so they are no longer strangers to God. #love #missions

  • Ambushed by God

    Posted on April 26, 2012 by Family Christian

    “Then the man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.” Genesis 32:28

     

    God does not let go of His children; in fact there are times that a faith exercise feels like a wrestling match. Life can be good and uneventful, then all of a sudden change ambushes a Christian with a surprise attack. It could be the mental gymnastics of doubting God when a very committed Christian friend seems to be trapped in an unfair circumstance. Or, out of the blue, the deep depression blues can assault the most ardent saints.

    Indeed, when we wrestle with the Lord there is a blessed outcome. It is not a contentious engagement but one of comprehending Who is really in control. If we fight against God conducting the course of our life, His loving pressure increases—even to the point of intense pain. If, however, we recognize His loving face during these pressure points, we patiently rest in this close proximity to Christ. He energizes our exhausted, feeble soul.

    “From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the LORD his God. He said: “In my distress I called to the LORD, and he answered me. From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, and you listened to my cry.” Jonah 2:1-2

    Has the Holy Spirit surprised you with a detour in what you thought was God’s will? Have you asked Jesus what blessing He wants to bestow on you and your family? Your spiritual struggle is not without spiritual significance. Blessings are birthed from friction and a feeling of resistance in your faith. Thus, embrace your confrontation with Christ and others as a prayerful process to build your character. His love will not let go of you!

    Stay engaged with the Almighty and experience His relentless favor. His desire for you is a partnership of prayer that produces a fulfilling life. Change is inevitable as you grow in your intimacy with the Lord. Like the secure sensation of a roaring fire in a fireplace, the closer you get to the heat of the Holy Spirit’s heart, the more He will warm you to His ways. When you feel ambushed by God, see it as your “burning bush” blessing of glory!

    “So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” When the LORD saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.” “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” Exodus 3:3-5

    Prayer: Lord, thanks for not letting go of me and for giving me your blessing of glory.

    Related Readings: Genesis 32:27-29; Mark 1:13; 2 Corinthians 11:16-33

    Post/Tweet this today: The closer we get to the heat of the Holy Spirit’s heart, the more He will warm us to His ways. #Holy Spirit

  • Humility Not Hubris

    Posted on April 25, 2012 by Family Christian

    “This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.” 1 Timothy 1:15

     

    Humility is modest and respectful; hubris is proud and arrogant. Humility practices an egoless attitude; hubris exhibits an egocentric persona. Humility has a proper perspective of its capabilities; hubris is overconfident. Humility depends on God and others; hubris thinks it is self-contained. Humility is an aspiring virtue; hubris is a venomous vice. 

    We cultivate humility in our hearts when we remember how far the Lord has brought us by His grace. We are sinners saved by God’s grace, kept by God’s grace, and empowered to live the Christian life, by God’s grace. Our humble living sacrifice to Christ is all of grace or none at all. We need not forget where we came from, less we lose our fiery faith.

    “Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” 1 Peter 5:5b

    Do you daily dress yourself in the clothes of humility? Consider a hat of submission to authority, a t-shirt of trust, a blouse of belief, a collared shirt of care, pants of prayer, a dress of dependence, a belt of boldness, socks of service, and shoes of gratitude. Humility lived out for the Lord requires intentionality in your body, soul, and spirit. Hubris hopes you dismiss humility as a strategy for the weak, but humility gives you access to grace.

    Perhaps you take the lead in doing chores around your house, or schedule a 24-hour silent retreat to get quiet before the Lord and listen to His gentle voice. Your humility checkmates hubris when you are intentional in your behavior and instructional in your beliefs. Jesus emptied Himself of self so His heavenly Father could fill Him with grace.

    Hubris says quiet times are electives, humility says they are required. Hubris says prayer is passé, humility says there is nothing more relevant. Hubris says personal achievement is the ultimate goal, humility says it’s for the glory of God. Your position of power and influence at home and work is a platform for humble service. See your role in life as a conduit for Christ and His kingdom. Your humility is heaven’s leverage in other’s lives.

    “Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Philippians 2:5b-8, NASB

    Prayer: Lord, teach me to walk in the humble steps of Your son Jesus.

    Related Readings: Exodus 10:3; 2 Kings 22:19; Daniel 5:22; Romans 12:3

    Post/Tweet this today: Are you dressed daily in the clothes of humility? #humilty

  • More than Conquerors

    Posted on April 24, 2012 by Family Christian

    Filled with gritty resolve and a special measure of God’s grace, Marvin Sapp’s newest record (and life) reminds us that we can defeat any obstacle through Christ.

    FC: What was the biggest inspiration for I Win?

    Marvin: I titled this CD I Win because I want to affirm for myself and for others that the winning is in the enduring. People have a perception that the winner is the one who crosses the finish line first – but I maintain that winning is not a destination but an attitude. I discovered the song I Win at a pastor’s conference a while ago – a young singer named Brittney A. Wright co-wrote and performed it. I was so very impressed by the song I asked her if she would allow me to record it, and a year and a half later I did.

    Family Christian: To date, your live albums have been recorded in your hometown of Grand Rapids, MI. What led to choosing to record this album near Washington D.C.?

    Marvin Sapp: I recorded the album near D.C. at Evangel Cathedral, simply because that was one of the first places I ever did a concert when I first started in the Gospel music industry some 22 years ago. I was in Commissioned and one of our first concerts was [there]. I’ve had a great relationship with that church for literally 22 years. As bad as I wanted to do the new recording in Grand Rapids where I’ve done all of my live recordings, it was just too close of a reminder of having buried my wife. She was always a part of my recordings because she managed my career. So, since I wasn’t going to do the recording in my city, the only place I could think to take it was to [the] family that’s not here, and that was Evangel Cathedral.

    FC: Your Twitter page includes the quote “I’m a preacher that happens to sing, not a singer that happens to preach.” How do you balance these two distinct roles?

    Marvin: I always say that I don’t balance, I prioritize. Because, when you try to balance or juggle, something inevitably is going to fall. The call on my life is to preach. I started preaching when I was 22 years of age, and that is what I prioritize. The music is an extension of my ministry, it is a gifting, but I keep it in its rightful place based on God’s call on my life. The gifts come without repentance. I’ve learned that you can be gifted and anointed and live like the devil. In order to be successful in your call, though, you have to tap into the Source. The only way that you can maintain being connected to the Source is you have to live a life that’s holy and acceptable in the sight of God. That’s one of the things we don’t talk about anymore in the church, and that’s trying to live holy. I challenge people who live close to me, next to me, with me that they have to learn to strive to live holy at all costs. Everything else springs forth from that.

    FC: Your life took an unexpected turn in 2010 with the loss of your dear wife. How has that affected your approach to ministry/music?

    Marvin: One of the blessings was that all of my contracts were negotiated by MaLinda already so it hasn’t affected my business at all. My booking office still does what it does. I’m still turning down a bunch of different dates… Opportunities are still there because we built a great staff so it hasn’t been difficult to move forward. Musically, I continue to record songs that I connect with because I know that those are the songs that will connect with people. MaLinda also laid out in great detail how things would move forward at our church, where she was the administrative pastor. So my approach in both ministry and music has been to adopt a motto that MaLinda had and said all the time:  “keep it moving.” That is what she wanted me to do.

    FC: What helped you through that time?

    Marvin: For me, prayer, praise and worship absolutely sustained me through the bereavement of my wife. I know I would not have been able to endure that great pain without God.

    FC: What is your favorite moment/song on the record, and why?

    Marvin: A standout moment was definitely the “Hymns Medley.” I grew up on hymns and my mom kinda taught me almost every hymn I know. When we were doing the recording, the “Hymns Medley” just happened. We were transitioning between songs and I just started singing hymns. At first, it wasn’t even supposed to go on the record. We were going to drop it and then the staff was like, “No, this is unbelievable. It’s gotta stay.” So, we just ended up putting it on the record - but I was just singing things I grew up listening to from traditional hymns to Andrae Crouch. And [so] we just went back and forth and people were blessed by it and I enjoyed doing it. Hopefully, people will love it when they hear it on the record.

    FC: For all of the recognition you’ve received over the years – is there a specific honor that has meant the most to you? And if so, why?

    Marvin: [laughing] The BET Award for Best Gospel Artist – because my kids were so excited about that! Honestly, every award and recognition is a very humbling experience.

    Click here to experience the passionate Gospel-energy of I Win.

  • Plan Ahead

    Posted on April 24, 2012 by Family Christian

    “Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest”. Proverbs 6:6-8

     

    Wisdom works hard now, but is wise about planning for the future. Planners have an innate discipline that prevents immediate urgent matters from distracting them as they stay focused on important issues. Their discipline determines what choices they make during the day; always keenly aware that their actions affect their future. The best planners take the time to process through assumptions and the implications of best and worst case scenarios.
     
    Self motivated and disciplined planners do not require rigid management and control. They thrive in autonomy, but still submit to the accountability of authority. Wise planners save time and money because there is a decision making filter in place that results in more no’s than yes’s to good opportunities. The Holy Spirit works through a prayerfully crafted plan to guide you into God’s best, so stay aligned with the plan.
     
    “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21

    Ants are small in stature but, with the unified effort of many, are large in results. A clearly defined, well-executed plan brings your team together producing outstanding outcomes. A plan creates creditability giving courage to those who carry it out. So be sensitive to your season of strategic service. If you are in the preparation phase, be patient and focused on the plan.

    If you are in the execution phase, remain diligent and focused on the task at hand. As you harvest success make sure to save for the future. Abundance is not meant to be spent all at once, but to be saved for the down times. Use your church, business, or home as a platform of provision for others in need. You plan ahead so that you can be an ambassador for Almighty God.

    “Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous, and ready to share, storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.” I Timothy 6:18-19

    Prayer: What opportunities do I need to put on hold so that I stay focused on implementing the current strategic plan with excellence?

    Related Readings: Genesis 41:28-43; Job 12:7-8; Luke 14:28; Hebrews 6:12

    Post/Tweet this today: A plan creates creditability giving courage to those who carry it out. #plan #courage

     

  • Tested Faith

    Posted on April 23, 2012 by Family Christian

    “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” Luke 22:31-32

     

    Satan is always on the prowl to discredit the faith of sincere disciples. He asks the Almighty if he can flush out the mercenaries who only see Jesus as a means to their own end. The Lord does give the devil permission at times (like with Job) to strain His children with temptation and trials. However, the enemy learns quickly that Jesus increases the intensity of His intercession for those being badgered by Satan’s schemes.

    A tested faith is an opportunity to grow from inspiration to transformation. We may deny Christ at times, but He does not deny us. We may lose faith, but He remains faithful. In our weakness, He is strong. Stumbling in our faith provides an opportunity for faith building. Emotional expression converts to willful commitment—post our predicament. Out of our tests of faith He brings success, so that we can help other followers of Jesus.

    "Does Job fear God for nothing?" Satan replied. "Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face." (Job 1:9-11 NIV)

    Are you ready for God's next step? Have you prayerfully prepared? Indeed, God may have a small step of suffering for you before your next significant step of faith. See a temporary delay as a divine detour to build your faith before your next move. As you spiritually spar with Satan, be brave, since your Savior prays for you. Your inner strength forged in spiritual fights becomes energy to effectively engage your external challenges.

    Like a trusted trainer who cares for and instructs a boxer who collapses on a stool in his corner, so Christ soothes your emotional cuts and bruises with His loving grace, He teaches you with wisdom. However, the Lord strengthens you so you can strengthen those whose faith is sputtering. There is a tear in every church pew—a dear saint who is waiting for a Christ follower like you to share from caring eyes your own liquid love. Your tested faith transformed by the Holy Spirit welds heaven's salvation to save souls!

    “And with many other words he [Peter] testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.” Acts 2:40-43, NKJV

    Prayer: Lord, whom can I strengthen in the faith by the strength You have given me?

    Related Readings: 2 Corinthians 13:5; Hebrews 11:17; James 1:3; Revelation 2:10

    Post/Tweet this today: There is a tear in every church pew waiting for you to share from caring eyes your own liquid love. #tears #compassion

  • Chosen by God

    Posted on April 22, 2012 by Family Christian

    Know that the Lord has set apart the godly for himself; the Lord will hear when I call to him. Psalm 4:3

     

    God chooses His children for Himself. Our relationship with our Lord is all about Him. It is all about His desires, His pleasures, His vision, His goals, and His will. When we came to God we came empty handed, clinging only to the cross of Christ. So in our surrender to our Savior, we emptied ourselves and received Jesus. We went from self-sufficient to God-dependent. We went from flesh patterns to spiritual habits.

    We went from ungodly to godly. We went from an impersonal relationship with a distant God to an intimate relationship with our heavenly Father, up close and personal. God chose us for Himself. Now in our engagement with eternity, we want what God wants. Our passions have been changed from the temporal to the eternal. We get excited over what excites God.

    Furthermore, He wants us to know and not forget these basic tenets of Christianity. He knows we need to know. He knows that we need to know because we forget and revert back to beliefs that rival God’s ownership of our lives. Because He owns us, He owns everything about us. You may be struggling with traveling overseas for the sake of His cause. But Jesus’s commands are clear that we are to go into all the world and make disciples.

    You may be too busy to build a relationship with your neighbors. But our sensitive Savior implores us to love them. Our words may say one thing, but our behavior brands us. What can we do today to set ourselves apart as His? Our distinctive may be to reflect a patient attitude, a caring comment, or sinless anger toward hypocrisy. We are at His disposal to carry out His desires. This is His expectation.

    Moreover, God offers a clear channel of communication for His children. He hears when we call to Him. Prayer is not passive for our heavenly Father. He is interested in our intense circumstances and our heartfelt fears. Because we are His, He listens to and answers our prayers. It is not always the answer we expect it to be. He defines His will for us as much with his answers of “no” as He does with His answers of “yes.”

    Our prayers are a response to the love, respect, dependency, and trust we have in our heavenly Father. Because we are His, we come to Him often, as does a child in a healthy relationship with his or her parent. We have no need to fear, for our heavenly Father is near. He is near to listen and to love. He is near to forgive and heal. He is a prayer away.

    The more we constantly converse with Christ, we will surely speak all the more boldly to men. Prayer is a purging and a preparation. It is God’s platform to launch us into fields that are ripe for harvest. It is a preparation for engagement in the lives of people. Prayer fills us with love so we can be emptied of love. God chooses us, and what He chooses He makes holy. We are godly because we are God’s. It is holiness that makes us fit to live with holy God forever. Without holiness we cannot see our Savior (Hebrews 12:14). Boldness follows seeing Jesus. Because He was poured out, we are sold out.

    Taken from Reading #3 in the 90-day devotional book, “Seeking God in the Psalms”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: Our words may say one thing, but our behavior is what brands us. #behavior

  • Remain Faithful

    Posted on April 21, 2012 by Family Christian

    “This calls for patient endurance on the part of the saints who obey God’s commandments and remain faithful to Jesus.” Revelation 14:12

     

    Faithfulness tends to be practiced by the few. However, for all committed followers of Christ, the clarion call is to remain faithful. He is the object of your adoration and your obedience, and He deserves and desires your faithfulness. It should be easier to remain faithful when the object of your faithfulness is as pure as the driven snow.

    There is nothing about Jesus that doesn’t elicit faithfulness. His fairness invites faithfulness; His grace and generosity generate faithfulness; His love longs for faithfulness; His holiness inspires faithfulness; His compassion creates faithfulness; His forgiveness foretells faithfulness; His judgment motivates faithfulness; His life models faithfulness. Jesus remained faithful to the very end and, in Him, so can you.
       
    Is there anything about Jesus that keeps you from remaining faithful? Who else can you go to for eternal life (John 6:68)? Faithfulness to Jesus is par for the Christian life. He is the standard by which you live. Even under the onslaught of illness, you remain faithful. As circumstances around you crumble, you remain faithful. When people mistreat and misunderstand you, you remain faithful.

    If you lose your job, you remain faithful. When a close friend lets you down and rejects you, you still remain faithful to Jesus. Faithfulness to Jesus is the chorus of Christian living. Moreover, His faithfulness to you is the measure of your capacity to remain faithful. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit’s power in your life provides you with the capability to remain faithful.
       
    Remaining faithful to people is a natural byproduct of remaining faithful to Jesus. People can be disappointing and downright disturbing. But your faithfulness may be the very thing that draws them to Jesus. Certainly, your remaining faithful will give them pause to reflect on your radical love and forgiveness. Faithfulness reminds people of truth. Paul said, “I am sending to you Timothy, my son whom I love, who is faithful in the Lord. He will remind you of my way of life in Christ Jesus…” (1 Corinthians 4:17).

    Therefore, make it a goal to remain faithful to an “undeserving” relative or friend. This becomes a magnet attracting them to God, and not a detour to the devil. You may need to dissolve a working partnership, but you can still salvage the relationship. You can remain faithful even when the other party doesn’t. Let your faithfulness, not your feelings, be the gauge for your giving, your service, your forgiveness, and your love. Above all else, remain faithful to Jesus, for He is the Faithful One.

    Taken from April 19th reading in the 365-day devotional book, “Seeking Daily the Heart of God”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: Remaining faithful to people is a natural byproduct of remaining faithful to Jesus. #faithful

  • Spirit-Filled Leaders Love

    Posted on April 20, 2012 by Family Christian

    “Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them.” Acts 6:3

     

    Leaders, full of the Spirit of God, represent the Lord well in how they serve others. A leader led by the Lord loves well. They look beyond what a person can do for them, and seek to understand what they can do for their colleagues. Love asks what motivates others to feel appreciated. Is it time off, a kind word, an unexpected bonus, or just knowing they are cared about? A spirit-filled servant of the Lord loves well, as a boss under God’s authority. 

    Furthermore, we may find ourselves in a position of responsibility to choose leaders at our church, in our community or for civic duties. This process of wisely qualifying a leader cannot become a popularity contest concerning charisma, charm, and who communicates the best. We are wise to prayerfully select those who serve for the pleasure of the customers or the constituents. Look for leaders who lovingly look out for others first.

    “If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing right. But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers.” James 2:8-9

    How are you doing as a leader who loves well? Yes, creating job opportunities is a good first step, but what about creating a culture of love? Not a workplace of mediocrity, but one of loving accountability. Team members are not made to believe in Jesus, but everyone is expected to behave like Jesus. As a leader do you model treating everyone with dignity? Janitors and Junior Associates alike receive your same respectful response.

    So, how do you remain consistent in leading a Spirit-filled life? It is a daily surrender to your Savior Jesus and death to self. You are a leaky vessel that needs the Lord’s infusion of grace to fill you back up to the brim. Yesterday’s filling cannot compensate for today’s empty feeling. Engage your faith in humble confession for the Spirit’s fullness and He will fill you to overflowing. Like a sprinkler refreshes grass, the Spirit waters your soul, so seek His fullness. Spirit-filled leaders love in the power of the Lord’s love.

    “The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life.” John 6:63

    Prayer: Lord whom are you calling me to love and serve in Your name?

    Related Readings: Job 32:18; Ezekiel 37:1; Luke 10:21; Acts 11:24

    Post/Tweet this today: Yesterday’s filling cannot compensate for today’s empty feeling. #Spirit #filled

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