Tuesday, March 25, 2014

I Believe in Aliens

It is said of born-again believers who follow Christ that “We are in this world, but we are not of this world!” What does that really mean?

True believers know that this world we live in is really not our home, but its only a temporary dwelling place. The scriptures verify that we live in this world as “sojourners and pilgrims.” (I Peter 2:11) The Bible meaning of a sojourner and pilgrim is one who is an alien, or resident foreigner, or stranger. (parepidemos—Greek)

The dictionary defines an alien as, “one belonging to another country or people, or foreigner.” This doesn’t mean that we are a creature from outer space. It means that we have an authentic citizenship in another country. God never intended for this earth to be our home. He intends for us to make heaven our home.

How then does God intend for us to dwell here on earth temporarily? We are called to bring blessing upon this earth that is cursed to darkness and destruction. That blessing comes out of our lives that He has blessed with love, mercy, and forgiveness. Though we ourselves are aliens to this world of darkness, God does not want us to alienate ourselves from touching the lives of those who are leprous with sin and lost in darkness.

We must continue to invite others to join us on our journey from this earth into glory. We are to become beacons on a hill that shines as a light to the world. We are told not to put our light under a basket but to shine before men that they may see the good we do and recognize that it is God working in us.

The light that the man of this world thinks he has is darkness. (Matthew  6:23) Darkness and decay go together. Because there is spiritual darkness, there are many cults and religions, even churches decaying, because of moral darkness. The quality of human life has decayed. The world is in darkness and no one but true Christians can give any knowledge or insight. By presenting ourselves “blameless and innocent children of God in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, we shine as lights in this world.” (Philippians 2:15)

We are not children of the dark. We are alien to the darkness of this world. We have God’s power to live a fruitful life! Our greatest joys are ahead. “An abundant entrance has been provided for us into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” (2 Peter 1:11)          

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

A Father’s Legacy Brings A Blessing!

Malachi 4:6: “And he will turn the hearts of the Father to the children and the hearts of the children to their Fathers!”

Fathers have left the family in droves over the last few decades. According to the 2013 Census, 25 million children lived in single parent homes. That is over one quarter of all the children in the US and of those, 84% were not living with a father. If the father is not in the home he cannot be a constant influence on his children.

Many fathers that remain with their family also drop the ball when it comes to modeling a godly walk with Christ. Faith should be handed down like a cherished family heirloom. The only thing you can take to heaven with you is your children. If they see Christ modeled by their fathers, they are more likely to take Him as their Savior.

What will be your legacy if your children only learn of God through their Sunday school teacher? How can you  leave a lasting godly legacy to your children and beyond?

As we assemble today, we remember a man who left a legacy, Walter Amundson - Pastor Amundson’s father. A man after God’s own heart. A man who followed God’s example from his childhood. A man who was a father, grandfather, great grandfather and loving husband. A man who set an example to not only his family, but also to the church as an elder for over 60 years, as well as to the community.

Walter Amundson left a godly legacy that stretches far and wide! We are all so thankful for his life. He will be missed greatly and remembered forever. Thank you Mr. Amundson for leaving a legacy that has brought many blessings and will continue to do so for generations!

Many thanks to Rose Amundson for sharing Walter all of these years! God bless you!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Kingdom Motivation

Living in God’s will is an incredible life, and it is God’s desire that we live it to the fullest! The definition of kingdom from the Webster’s Dictionary: A country whose ruler is a king – The spiritual world of which God is king – The eternal kingship of God – The realm in which God’s will is fulfilled. Interesting considering this is from non-theological material. Walking in the will of God involves a very interesting lifestyle. I love what Romans 12:11 says, “Not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord!” Listen to what the NTL says, “Never be lazy, work hard, and serve the Lord enthusiastically!”

Walking in God’s will means working hard, diligent in all we do, going the extra mile as though we are working for the Lord, which we are! Working hard builds character, Godly character. Working hard bring fulfillment, peace, joy, contentment, and excitement! Never being lazy, notice the Bible puts the two together because a person cannot be lazy but still not work hard. You can be busy, and yet not work hard, but when you combine the two, they are the power twins! The last part of the verse involves putting these two into action: serving the Lord, serving Him with all of our heart! Serving the Lord means both serving God and man. Jesus came to earth as savior and servant! When we seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, this is the lifestyle it will lead to! This is what changed my life and I will forever be thankful to my Lord and King, Jesus!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Who is Your King

The view that the Bible gives of man is that every one of us is intended to be a king over a kingdom. The whole purpose of the Lord Jesus coming into our lives, which is the theme of the Bible, is that we might learn how to reign over the Kingdom of our lives in God-given authority and victory. It is this that makes human life full and complete and fascinating when we learn to walk in God’s power. One of the overworked phrases constantly talked about in Christian circles is “the victorious Christian life.” Unfortunately that has been abused, distorted, twisted, and perverted so many times that it has lost much of its meaning for us.

But if you take it in the freshness of it’s original intention, that is exactly what God has in mind for you—to learn how to walk in victory as a king over the kingdom of your life and so find its intended fulfillment. God called aside the nation of Israel; He marked it out as His own people. He made, in a sense, a stage of the land of Israel. He bid the whole world to look upon that nation. What went on in that land is a portrayal of what is going on throughout the whole course of human history, and individually going on in each of our lives. If we see the Bible like this, it takes on a tremendously intense meaning and purpose in our lives.

For instance, in the Book of 1 Kings we see the secret of success in reigning over the kingdom of your life. It is the secret of learning to be submissive to the authority and dominion of God in your own life. In other words, man can never exercise dominion over his life unless he first subjects himself to the dominion of God. If you yield to God’s dominion, you are given reign over the areas in your own life. On the other hand, if you refuse the dominion of God in your own life, you cannot under any circumstances or by any means fulfill your desire to be in authority over your life. It is impossible! That is why the spotlight is on the throne! It is the king that is the important one – for as the King goes, so goes the nation. In your life your will is king. What your will allows to enter in to control your life determines how the kingdom of your life goes. Authority must come by the gift and hand of God. We cannot reign except as we are established by God. When we give ourselves to the authority of God, it becomes His responsibility to bring every circumstance and every enemy and every rebellion that would otherwise threaten our reign, under control. Who is your King? “And as for you, my Lord, O King, the eyes of all Israel are on you, that you should tell them who will sit on the throne of my Lord, the King after him.”1 Kings 1:20

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The Family of God

One of the most important parts of the church is its family-like aspect.

1 Timothy 3:15: “But if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth!”

The family is possibly the most attractive simile describing the church. Being a part of the family of God is a great blessing! We all realize how important a family is. The family of God is a safe haven for those who are a part.

We marry, have children, rear them and cry when they leave. Why? Because of the importance of the family. I am personally closer to the family of God than my own blood family and I am so thankful for them! What are some of the elements of the family that make it really work?

1. In a family we find expectations. Jesus has given different talents to different people and He expects those talents to be used. He wants us to grow; He wants us to mature; He wants us to realize our potential. He expects us to do our best.

2. In a family we have forgiveness. Jesus is willing to forgive everyone in the family who repents. He expects us to forgive one another. If we harbor unforgiveness, then God can not and will not forgive us.

3. In a family there is encouragement. Jesus wants us to encourage one another. How can we encourage one another? By properly spoken words, togetherness, cooperation, and manifested love! John 13:35: “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

1 John 2:9-11: “He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes.”

Praise the Lord for the family of God!