10 Things: 8 His People

#8 of the 10 things God gives us on our discipleship journey to Christ Likeness 

HIS PEOPLE

God will use His People He places in your life to help you become like Jesus.

God gives you People To Teach You how to be like Jesus

Ephesians 4:11-13 gives a list of the different kinds of leaders appointed by Jesus to teach you until your life is a reflection of Jesus life (vs 13) “they will continue to teach until you are mature in the Lord, using Jesus as the standard, to the full measure of Jesus Christ.”

God gives you PEOPLE to be a GOOD EXAMPLE of Jesus to you!

In 1 Corinthians 11:1 Paul says to follow him as he followed Christ.

Jesus said: “love one another as I have loved you.”
John 13:34

Do people look at your life as an example to them of what Jesus is like?

They should see Jesus being reflected (Glorified) in everything you do.
1 Corinthians 10:31

God gives you PEOPLE Who are FAMILY or like FAMILY to show you and guide you.

God made us for Himself and for each other.
Psalms 24:1-2
John 13:34

We were created for relationship with God and for relationship with each other.
Genesis 1:27
Genesis 3:8
Genesis 2:18

The greatest influence in our lives will come from the people in our lives. 

Being in relationship with other people will bring you your greatest joys and your greatest sorrows.

God put us in families. Family relationships were created to teach us the things of God. His true nature and character. The Culture of God’s Eternal Kingdom.
Ephesians 5:1-2
Ephesians 5:21-33
Ephesians 6:1-4

God gave us PARENTS and others who become Spiritual Parents.

In 1 Thessalonians 2:11 Paul said: “we treated you as a fathers treats his children, Encouraging you. Comforting you and Challenging you to Live like Jesus.”

In 1 Thessalonians 2:7-12 Paul said we treated you like a mother treat her new born baby. We loved you and cared for you. We didn’t just teach you, we gave our live to you”

Inside a FAMILY you should see, learn, understand and experience the fruit of God’s Spirit listed in Ephesians 5:22-23

Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.

God gave us EACH OTHER to help EACH OTHER on our personal discipleship journey. 
  • SPIRITUAL LEADERS
  • TEACHERS, 
  • FRIENDS
  • FAMILY

All a part of God’s design.

You have been blessed, not by your own choosing, by God to have a mother and father that love each other and love you. Be grateful and listen to them.

To MY CHILDREN!

Teach your children about Jesus and live like Jesus as their example.
Ephesians 6:4

That’s what your mother and I tried to do.

To MY GRANDCHILDREN !

My encouragement to you is to make sure you have two or three people in your life who will personally go with you on the wonderful yet difficult and demanding discipleship journey of being transformed into the Likeness of Jesus.

Jesus said “When 2 or 3 are gathered in my name I am there with them.”

Matthew 18:29

Ecclesiastes 4:8-12 says 2 are better than 1 and 3 is even better than 2.

Proverbs 17:24 and Proverbs 13:20 tell us why choosing good friends is so important.

The Bible and life’s experiences both teach you that will become like the friends you choose!

Choose some friends who  are on the journey of becoming like Jesus and will go on that journey with you.

PEOPLE LIKE JESUS!

10 Things: 7 Prayer

#7 of the 10 things God gives us on our discipleship journey to Christ Likeness 

PRAYER
God is always available to talk.

God tell us we can call on Him, talk to Him, anytime day or night on our journey to become like Jesus.
Romans 8:29

God tell us we can ask Him about anything and everything.

In Jeremiah 33:3 God says: “Call on me and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things you don’t know about”

1 John 5:15 says when we ask God for something, He hears us.

In Psalms 91:15 God says: “Call on me and I will answer you”

In Matthew 7:7 Jesus says: when you ask, seek and knock then God will answer your prayers.

PRAY FOR……….

-SPIRITUAL UNDERSTANDING
Ephesians 1:15-19 says pray and God will give you Spiritual Understanding so you can know Him, His Son, His will, and His ways.

-FORGIVENESS
1 John 1:9 says God Will forgive us if we ask Him to.

-WISDOM
James 1:5 says if we need wisdom, ask God and He will give it to you.

-PEACE
Philippians 4:6-7 says praying to God will give you peace

-DELIVERANCE FROM EVIL
Luke 11:4 says pray and God will deliver us from evil and temptation. Also in Luke 22:40.

-WHEN PEOPLE SUFFER
Hebrews 13:3 says to pray when people are being mistreated, hurting, and suffering.

-FOR YOUR NEEDS
Philippians 4:19 says God will supply your needs.
Matthew 7:9-11 says He will supply your needs so just ask Him.

-FOR OTHERS NEEDS
1 Thessalonians 5:23-25 & 1 Timothy 2:1-2 Tells us to pray for the needs of others

Are you Listening?

Prayer is more than TAKING to God. Prayer is LISTENING to God too….

God is always speaking, teaching!

Talking and Asking is 1% of prayer! Listening is 99% of prayer!

In 1 Thessalonians 5:17 Paul said He prayed all the time. He wasn’t always talking or asking. He was always listening. 

Paul was in continual communication and conversation with God.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Prayer is not giving God your wish list.

Praying is a two way conversation.

God already knows what you need
Matthew 6:8

You really really need is to listen to Him!

Jesus Prayed

Luke 6:12 says Jesus went up into the mountains and prayed all night.

When did Jesus Pray?

Here are a few:

  • Luke 3:21-22
  • Luke 9:28-43
  • Matthew 14:23
  • Matthew 26:36-46
  • Luke 23:34

Google “show me all the times that Jesus prayed”

Jesus said He did what His  Father showed Him.
John 5:19-20

______________________

Learn to PRAY

Plan to PRAY 

Always PRAY

_______________________

Want to be like Jesus?
PRAY

God is always there!
PRAY

There’s so much more!
PRAY 

_____________________

“My prayer for you is that you become a person who prays!”

The disciples said: Lord, teach us to PRAY?
Luke 11:1

10 Things: 6 His Grace

#6 of the 10 things God gives us on our discipleship journey to Christ Likeness 

GRACE
Galatians 4:19

I’ve heard GRACE defined as an acronym 

G – God’s
R – Riches
A – At
C – Christ
E – Expense

God’s…Jesus definitely opened the door to God’s Kingdom for us through His death and resurrection.
John 10:7 & Revelation 7:10

Riches…Because of what Jesus did and because of our faith in Him, God is now our Father, we are God’s children and heirs of His Kingdom.
Romans 8:15-18 & John 3:16

At…Jesus chose to give His life for our salvation.
John 10:17-18 & John 19:16-17

Christ…We have all willing chosen to sin (disobey and rebel) against God.
Roman 3:23 & Romans 6:23
1 Timothy 1:16-17

Expense …It cost Jesus His Life to save us, it will cost us our lives to serve Him.
1 Corinthians 11: 23-26
Romans 3:24-26
Romans 5:8

“Jesus gave His life for me. I will give my life to Him”
Rachel Scott

Mercy and Grace are like the two wings on an airplane, You get one and you get the other.

Mercy is not getting what we do deserve!

Grace is getting what we don’t deserve!

I call #6 GOD’S GRACE, 

“the freedom to fail.”

If you’ve ever watched a baby learn to walk, you will watch him fall many times. His loving parents do not scold or condemn him when he falls / fails.

(i.e. “you can’t do it”, “you’ll never be able to walk”, “you’re stupid”, “you’re a failure”)

Instead, They pick him up and encourage him to try again. Keep trying no matter as long as it takes . You can do it! I will be right here with you.

God is our loving Father. He created us to be like His Son, Jesus. To walk like Jesus walked.

When we start this discipleship journey we will surely fall / fall many time.

As a loving Father, God does not condemn or criticize. He picks us up, instructs us, and says let’s try again.

(2 Peter 1:3)

Keep trying, You can do this!

(Galatians 6:9)

GOD’S GRACE is God’s way of giving you permission to fail as many times as you need, to learn to walk in the footsteps of Jesus.
(Hebrews 13:5-6)

GOD’S GRACE is sufficient for you on you journey to be like Jesus
(2 Corinthians 12:9)

The discipleship journey we’re on is a journey of becoming like Jesus.

In Luke 6:40 Jesus said, “A disciple is not greater than his teacher but when he is fully trained he is exactly like his teacher. ” Just like Jesus

In Matthew 29:19, Jesus said: “Go make disciples People like Jesus of all nations”

We’re going to explore 10 areas of our life that need to be remade, transformed, into the likeness of Jesus.

#1 A New Birth

Birth is the start of new beginnings.

Luke 1:35 says Jesus was born of the Holy Spirit.

John 3:4-5
Jesus taught unless we are born of the same Holy Spirit Just like Jesus we can not see or enter the Kingdom of God.

John 3:6-7 (NLT)
“Only humans can give birth to humans and only the Holy Spirit can give spiritual birth.”

Physical Birth and Spiritual Birth

When we are born physically, 3 things happen:

  1. We are a new person.
  2. We have a new family.
  3. We become a citizen of the country we are born in.

Just by being born!

We we are born again spiritually, 3 things happen:

  1. We are a new person.
  2. We have a new family.
  3. We become a citizen of God’s Eternal Kingdom.

This is given you just by being born again!

2 Corinthians 5:17 says when we believe in Jesus by choosing to follow Him we become a new person, a new creation. A new beginning!

Galatians 4:4-5 and 1 John 3:1 tell us when we believe in Jesus we become God’s children and members of a new family, God’s forever family.

Philippians 3:20-21 says we are now citizens of Heaven, God’s eternal kingdom.

To be like Jesus you start by being born of God’s Spirit. People like Jesus

That is the beginning of a whole new life.

1 John 5:1 Those of us who have chosen to believe in and follow Jesus have been born again.

As followers of Jesus, let’s explore what it means to be a child of God, to live as God’s children, and to be heirs to God’s Kingdom.

Luke 4:43 “The Good News of the Kingdom of God”

My prayer today is that we all choose Jesus and join God’s forever family.

The 7 Teachers: 1 God’s Voice

In over 30 years as a youth pastor, one of the top 3 questions I got was, “How can I heart God’s voice?”

It was one of my big questions as a young boy learning to follow Jesus.

Here is a couple of things I’ve learned.

God is a Spirit being. John 1:18 no man has seen God because God is Spirit. That’s why Jesus became a human being to make God know to us.

God created you as a spirit being, so God speaks to your spirit.

Sometimes, but rarely, He speaks with an audible voice 

God talked with Adam in the Garden of Eden
Genesis 3:8-9

God talked to Abraham and Abraham started the Jewish nation we call Israel
Genesis 12:1-4

God talked with Moses
Genesis 8:1

God talked with Samuel as a young boy
1 Samuel 3:10-11

God spoke to Jeremiah
Jeremiah 1:5-9

God spoke from Heaven
Matthew 3:17 & Luke 9:35

God spoke to Elijah while he was alone sitting quietly in a cave.
1 Kings 19:9-18

Make time in your life to be alone with God.

Our lives are so busy that we can’t or don’t hear His voice.

To me, this is the best way to hear and learn God’s voice. When we’re alone and quiet, asking God to speak to us.

He said “seek me and you will find if you seek me with all your heart.”
Jeremiah 29:13

Acts 17:27-28

I pray you will spend time alone seeking to hear God’s voices.

The 7 Teachers found in the Bible

We’ve been talking about how God wants to talk to us and is always trying to teach us about who He really is, His love for us, and His plans for us. His eternal purpose.

Ephesians 3:11

I’ve found 7 ways God’s teaches us. I call them the 7 teachers found in the Bible

1. God our Heavenly Father teaches us.

Psalms 71:17

2. Jesus, God’s son, teaches us.

Matthew 4:23 & John 8:2

(Jesus was called teacher 45 times in the New Testament)

3. God’s Holy Spirit teaches us.

John 14:26

4. The Bible, God’s written word, teaches us. 

2 Timothy 3:15 & Psalms 119:11

5. God’s people teach us.

Ephesians 6:1 & Ephesians 4:11 (Godly parents , pastors, and teachers)

6. God’s creation teaches us

Romans 1:20 & Psalms 19:1

7. We teach ourselves. God gave us our lives and our own life experiences teach us.

James 1:23-24, 2 Timothy 2:15. Luke 24:8, James 1:22-25, & Deuteronomy 8:11

 

He’s talking. Are we listening?

My prayer for you is that you learn to hear God’s voice and obey (that’s what Jesus did)

When you commit to read the Bible (every day if possible) the gospels are a good place to start.

I recommend three books that I have read over and over. 

  1. The gospel of Luke 
  2. The gospel of John
  3. The book of Ephesians

All the books of the Bible teach us uniquely different things and someday you will have read them all.

For me, the “New Living Bible” translation is the best way to start.

A father took the time to translate the Bible for his children to read and understand it better. It was published and called “The Living Bible”

In Ephesians 3:3-5

Paul said the mystery about God was revealed in Jesus and Paul wrote it down so when we read it we could understand.

Proverbs 2:6-7

Proverbs 3:5-6

Timothy 2:7

Colossians 1:9

1 Corinthians 2:12

God wants you to know Him and understand Him. We are not just seeking Him, He is seeking us.

I pray that as you seek Him you will come to perfectly understand everything God wants you to know.

Read It, Memorize It, Meditate on It, Study It

I want to encourage you to read your Bible and read it every day if you can. But not just read it, memorize it, meditate on it, study it. 

Your great grandmother, my mother, said that 26 verses in the Bible she read and memorized as a child helped her live everyday of her life till she died at age 94. And Mamaw lived an amazing life that impacted all of us and touched so many people.

Memorize what it says

         Psalms 119:11

Meditate on what it says

         Joshua 1:8 & Psalms 1:2

Study what it says.

         2 Timothy 2:15-17

The Bible is by far the most important book you will ever read. It is the most important book in human history. 

It has changed the course of people’s lives. It has changed the course of nations.

It will change the way you think.

It will change the way you live.

It will change you view life.

It contains everything you need to know and understand who God is, Who Jesus is, who the Holy Spirit is and who you are.

What people, throughout human history, think about the Bible has not change what the Bible says.

What the Bible says has change how people think and has changed human history.

My suggestions:

  1. Get a modern translation
  2. make time everyday to read it
  3. Find best way to start and the best place to start
  4. If you read something you like under line it
  5. If you read something you don’t understand call me
  6. If you have a question about something you’ve read, call me.

I love you and I’m praying for you today that you will have a greater desire to know and understand the Bible.

Granddaddy

Beware of Stinking Thinking

This world will try to get you to think one way. God wants you to think differently, His way.

Proverbs 23:7 says “what you think in your heart, determines who you are and who you will become.

Romans 12:1-2 says we should stop thinking the way the world thinks and start thinking the way God thinks.

Philippians 2:5 says let your (mind) thinking be just like Jesus (mind) thinking

1st Corinthians 2:16 tells us that when we give our lives to Jesus, God puts the mind of Christ in us. 

As followers of Jesus we can know and understand what Jesus thinks and why he said what he said and did what he did.

People will try to get you to think the way they want you to think. That way they can influence you or even control you. Sometimes times to get you to do the right thing but sometimes to get you to do the wrong thing.

2nd Corinthians 10:5 tells us to take all our thoughts to Jesus Christ and make sure they match up with his thinking.

Who do you think you are? Who do others think you are?

Does that match up with who God says you are.

What you think about your self is very important. It will influence:

  1. your choices
  2. how you live
  3. who your friends are
  4. how you treat others
  5. how you treat yourself.

In Mark 12:31 Jesus said “love others the way you love yourself”

I want to encourage you. Don’t just think the way the everyone in this world tries to get you to think.

Learn to think the way God wants you to think.