Sunday, May 30, 2010

Spiritual Super Bowl

Study Passages: Philippians 1:21; Galatians 2:10; Revelations 4:11; 1 John 4:4

Super Bowl Sunday is almost here. Only two teams, out of 32, will play. At the start of this season, I bet most teams had high hopes that this was their year to reach the pinnacle, the Super Bowl. Each of the coaches and their staff worked tirelessly during the season, and even off season, to find and train the best players that will take them one step closer to the goal. Can you imagine all of the man hours invested? All for one event? The Colts and Saints are excited to be in the Super Bowl, no doubt, but no one just wants to play in it - they want to win it.

We too are in a Super Bowl battle of sorts. There are only two teams and our team is not only in the game, we are focused on winning.

We have a horrific enemy who is constantly scheming and relentlessly wants to destroy us. He loves to unload fiery darts and tries to overload us with this world’s worries and cares (1 Peter 5:6-11), so that he can steal our joy (Luke 8:14).

But what a team we have!!!

Jesus Christ, our quarterback, is committed to present us to His Father as a radiant church (Eph. 5:27) and is working out His salvation plan in and through us (Phil. 2:12-13). Paul teaches us that we live in “heavenly places” which is in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3, 20; 2:6; 3:10; 6:12). The Holy Spirit lives in us (1 Cor. 6:19), as His Helper (John 14:16) and angels are around us (Hebrews 1:14). John says; "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one." (John 10:27-30, NASU). We also have armor to withstand the attacks of the enemy (Ephesians 6:13-16). What a team!!!

So the question remains, “Are we just glad to be on the team or are we ready to take our place on the field of the Spiritual Super Bowl?

Live for the glory that victory through Christ provides (Philippians 1:21; Galatians 2:10; Revelations 4:11; 1 John 4:4). We have a powerful faithful team!!!

Keeping the Unity

Study Passages: Luke 10:25-28; John 13:35; 1 John 4:7-12; Matthew 6:14-15; 18:21- 35; Philippians 2:1-5; Colossians. 3:16

A young Christian couple came to their pastor’s office confused and frustrated about their marriage. They asked the old preacher, “Why did we have so much joy together when we were dating, and now in our first year of marriage, all we seem to do is bicker and fight? Where is the friendship and companionship?”

After staring at them intently for a minute, the old preacher responded, telling them that when they were dating compassion ruled their hearts. He asked each to remember how willing they were to serve the other. Back when they dated it didn’t matter the amount of time, energy or inconvenience, each was willing to sacrifice for the other. They were willing to allow Christ to be the center of their relationship. They made time to pray, to read God's Word and serve together in the church.

Realizing how far they had drifted, the young couple looked at their preacher and asked, “What must we do?" He said, “Every plane that takes off must land, and in each case it needs a runway. Your relationship follows a similar pattern. Dating and then when you exchanged vows was the first runway, your honeymoon is like your smooth flight over the ocean and then your arrival to marriage for a life time is the second runway. Everything you did when you took off from the first runway you must repeat when you land on the second runway.”

There is no mystery in making a relationship last. We must follow God’s pattern. The joy of unity is maintained when we are willing to have compassion for one another, and serve one another (Philippians 2:1-5), and to allow God's Word to rule (Col. 3:16).

I know that this will call for sacrifice. The more we submit to Christ then the more of Christ we will experience. The more we seek to live in joy and unity, the more we will encounter God's glory. This will also allow us to have greater strength and a joy that can triumph over arguments and stress. Remember, love can last a lifetime when you allow Christ to pilot your relationship.

Keep Flying

Study Passages: John 14:16-18, 26; Romans 8:26; Matthew 28:20; John 15:1-8; 1 Peter 5:7-8; Psalms 91:1-4,11.

During World War I a plane flown by a Tuskegee pilot was badly damage during a fierce battle. The pilot struggled to maintain his altitude as he made his way back from the long mission. He held on for hours but could no longer control the plane. He radioed to some of the other pilots to say his goodbyes and to wish them well. They kept shouting back at him telling him not to give up.

Each pilot tried to tell him how he could maneuver to keep the plane in the air. But he knew he could hold on no more. Then suddenly two planes appeared at his side. He shouted at his fellow pilots to get away because he did not want to put them in danger. They did not respond; they had decided to put their wings under his wings and carry him the rest of the way. This was very dangerous because if their wings fell off, they would die with him. They determined that the danger they were facing was not greater than their friendship, so for miles they carried their friend until he landed safely.

When we make our way through life there are times when we become wounded. We do our best to hold on. We put on a smile like everything is all right. We tell everyone that everything is all right. But over a period of time, these trials find a way to wear us down. We become overwhelmed and feel like throwing in the towel. Remember that God has provided us the Holy Spirit who is our Helper, Comforter and Friend in our time of need (John 14:16-18, 26; Romans 8:26). God is so faithful that when we forget that He promised that He will never leave us, nor forsake us (Matthew 28:20), He never forgets. The only thing that we must keep doing, like the wounded pilot did, is keep flying (John 15:1-8), believing in our hearts that as we cast our cares upon Him He will care for us (1 Peter 5:7-8).

Psalms 91:1-4,11 says; “He who dwells in shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust! For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark. For He will give His angels charge concerning you, to guard you in all your ways.”

When our trials seem hard to bear, trust in the Lord and believe in your heart that God, through the ministry of the Holy Spirit and His heavenly forces, will carry you to a safe landing.

Racism Is Not in God’s Plan

Study Passages: Matthew 12:25, Ephesians 4:25-31, Psalms 90:12, Ephesians 5:15-16, Romans 14:19, Romans 15:7

There is no question that racism exists. It may not be as dangerous or as difficult as it was back in our grandparents and parents day, but it can still be painful. Racism can lead to isolationism, where different races do not live near each other or even worship with each other. This may create a sense of immediate gratification but the long-term results are a divided nation, divided neighborhoods and even divided churches. God’s Word is clear: this leads to a nation, neighborhood, church that will not stand (Matthew 12:25). In order words, they will soon be destroyed. Such division encourages hate, evil and malice which then gives Satan a foothold (Ephesians 4:25-31). The long-term results are hateful and poisonous to everyone.

Will Norton, Jr., best-selling novelist, told a story about his best friend who died when he was 25, a few years after he had finished Mississippi State University. Will was in law school, when he received a call for him to meet his best friend for lunch. While eating lunch his best friend revealed to him that he had terminal cancer. Will asked, “What do you do when you realize that you re about to die?” His best friend told him that it was really simple. You get things right with God, and you spend as much time as you can with those you love. Then you settle up with everybody else.” Then he said, “You know, you ought to live every day like you have only a few more days to live.”

This story highlights Psalms 90:12; “So teach us to number our days, that we may present to Thee a heart of wisdom.” Life is not guaranteed (Ephesians 5:15-16), but we do know that we will live forever with each other in heaven. As believers who are being transformed into His likeness (2 Corinthians 3:18) we should learn to live at peace despite the pain and frustration.

“If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men (Romans 12:18)”. “So then let us pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another” (Romans 14:19). “Wherefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God.” (Romans 15:7).

Lying as a Way of Life

Study Passage: Proverbs 6:16-19

Have you noticed how lying has become such a part of everyday life that it sometimes becomes difficult to distinguish reality from lie? For example, do reality shows depict life as it is or is it a scripted story filmed to look real? Movies, soap-operas, and even pro-wrestling programs glamorize a story line (a lie) and try to pass it off as truth.

One day a mom asked her young son, “What is a lie, honey?” He said in a serious tone, “Mother, a lie is an abomination to the Lord, but a very present help in a time of need.”*

Funny as that is, many people agree. Lying can become so common place that parents sometimes instruct their children to lie. Back in the days when kids traveled on trains to get somewhere with their parents, they didn’t charge for kids that were five or under. And so this six-year-old fellow was told by his mother, as they were carrying their bags to the train, “Tell ‘em you’re five.” The little boy frowned and he got on the train and sat down. And the conductor came by and said, “How old are you, son?” And he says, “Uhh, five.” So he didn’t pay anything. His mother paid her fare and the conductor left. The conductor came back a couple of hours later just to talk to him – rubbed his hand in the little fellow’s hair and said, “Well, how are you getting’ along?” The boy answered, “Really good.” The conductor continued their chat and said, “Let’s see, when are you gonna be six?” And the little boy said, “About the time I get off this train I’m gonna to be six.” It is interesting that a child can find it difficult to lie, yet as adults we seem to do it so easily.

Today, how many parents tell their children to do the same thing in order to pay a lower price for a movie?

“A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who tells lies will not escape.” (Proverbs19:5). To lie is seek to distort truth or to imagine things that did not occur. This is because to speak truth is to reveal a fact. Truth is to report something that has occurred exactly the way it took place or to trust that something will happen based on the creditability of the source.

Pledge in your heart today not to participate in lies, whether they are “little white lies” of convenience or really big whoppers. Living between the lines of blurred truth, as TV shows and movies often do, is the same as living in the dark.

Living a lie is like moving around in the dark. A person may get around but it is a lot of trouble that can lead to a broken toe.

*Paul E. Holdcraft, Snappy Stories That Preachers Tell.

Saturday, May 29, 2010


Welcome to the Power Walk Ministries Blog.

- Power Walk Team