Archives For All Praise

Word for Your Life

This day I call the heavens & earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life & death, blessings & curses.  Now choose life, that you & your children may live. ~ Deuteronomy 30:19

A Year with Aslan from The Magician’s Nephew

We often say we “Trust in God”, but do we really?

As Aslan looks at Digory, he says …

“Son of Adam” .. “Are you ready to undo the wrong that you have done to my sweet country of Narnia on the very first day of its birth?”

Digory starts to answer .. “Well, I don’t see what I can do,” … but Aslan interrupts…

“I asked, are you ready?”  Digory says “Yes”, but the passage goes on to say that he thought about asking for a promise to help his mother, but he realized that the Lion was not at all the sort of person you could try to make bargains with.

God is less worried about your ability as He is your availability.

Quotes

A-W Tozer ~ That Incredible Christian

The typical church is composed of the few whose shoulders are bruised by their faithful labors & the many who are unwilling to raise a blister in the service of God & their fellow men.  Before the judgment seat of Christ my service will be judged not by how much I have done, but by how much I could have done. In God’s sight my giving is measured not by how much I have given, but by how much I could have given – & how much I had left after I made my gift.

Daily Walk Devotion ~ Intentional Living Center

Salvation is from the Lord and not man, but we do have a part to play.  There are Cumulative Consequences to the decisions we make.

Back in Vietnam, a lot of soldiers were exposed to Agent Orange.  They were told it was safe, but found out years later it wasn’t.  & the same thing can be true for what we’re allowing into our minds.  Society glorifies violence, promotes immorality & the love of money.  It may seem harmless now, but we’ll find out soon enough that it’s not.

That’s why 2 Corinthians 7:1 is so important.

Let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body & spirit.

Donald Miller ~ Blue Like Jazz

I can no more understand all the complexities of God than the pancake I made for breakfast can understand me.  At the end of the day I know the chances of our theology being exactly right are a million to one, but I also know it’s going to be okay – because God has things figured out.

Brennan Manning ~ The Ragamuffin Gospel

The slant of the earth, tilted at 23º, produces our seasons.  If the moon were only 50,000 miles away instead of 250,000 – the tides might be so enormous we’d all be submerged in water. & if the crust of the earth were just 10 thicker, there’s wouldn’t be any oxygen.

When we consider all that, Job 26:7 takes on new significance.

He has poised the earth on nothingness.

Matt Redman ~ Facedown

the key to a life of passionate & powerful worship comes from seeing God.  We live as worshippers of the otherly in a culture of the ordinary.  All worship, he says, is a response to a revelation.  It’s only as we breathe in more of the wonders of God, that we can breathe out a fuller response to Him.

Oswald Chambers ~ The Love of God

If we try to fight God’s battles with our own weapons, we shall fail & fail miserably.  We’re told, he says, to keep [ourselves] in the Love of God, not keep on loving God.  We can’t do that, but oh that we may be driven further & further out into the ocean fullness of the Love of God, taking care that nothing entices us out of that fullness again.

Scriptures

Zechariah 12:3

Ezekiel 1

Isaiah 40:31

1 Corinthians 15:51

John 1:1-14

Word for Your Life

God has delivered me from going down to the pit, & I shall live to enjoy the light of life. ~ Job 33:28

A Year with Aslan from Voyage of the Dawn Treader

It is the love of God that keeps him with us, but sometimes you’re hardest on the ones you love the most.

Reepicheep has gone overboard & Drinian is ticked. He says..

Drat that mouse!  It’s more trouble than all the rest of the ship’s company put together. It ought to be put in irons – keel-hauled – marooned – & have its whiskers cut off!  All this didn’t mean Drinian disliked Reepicheep.  On the contrary, he liked him very much & therefore was frightened about him – just as your mother is much angrier with you for running out into the road than a stranger would be.

I think the same is true for our Father in Heaven.  He gives us these boundaries because He loves us.

Quotes

A-W Tozer ~ Tragedy In the Church

…the Holy Spirit is to the church what our own souls are to our physical bodies. Thru the operation of the Holy Spirit, Christ becomes the life, the unity, & the consciousness of the body, which is the church. Let the soul leave the physical body & all the parts of the body cease to function. Let the Spirit be denied His place in the church, & it ceases to function as God intended.

Daily Walk Devotion ~ Intentional Living Center

One of the ways we’ll notice his Kingdom coming is when we start to define greatness differently than the world does.

Joshua Bell was a child prodigy on the violin & went on to become a world-class musician.  One day, walking thru his hometown a little kid shouted out at him “You’re Josh Bell – you’re famous.”  Joshua said “Not really”…but before he could say anything else said “Yes you are.  Your name is on every video game in the arcade with the high score.”

The world has it’s idea of great, but the Kingdom of Heaven values humility & servanthood.

Jay Millbrandt ~ Go + Do

…it’s easy to get caught up in the idea that we have to accomplish something of extreme significance.  We celebrate human achievement to a degree where anything less seems devoid of purpose.  The first thing we must realize is that it’s not about changing the world.  It’s about changing ourselves.  When we experience a personal revolution, it changes the way we approach the world.  That alone is significant.

David Watson ~ I Believe In the Church

If you want to make sure of keeping [your heart] intact, you must give it to no one.  Wrap it carefully round with hobbies & little luxuries.  There it will not be broken, but will become unbreakable.  The only place outside of heaven where you can be perfectly safe from love – is hell.

David Roper ~ A Heart of Wisdom

Aging itself is a journey away from settled & secure to endless change.  As we grow older we pass thru parts unknown, just lookin’ for a home.  Yet we can be at home in every place we dwell, for our safekeeping lies not in the place, but in God himself.  He will be our companion & friend until our traveling days are over & we reach our heart’s true Home.

Asa Phillips Randolph ~ Civil Rights Leader

Freedom is never given; it is won.

Pastor Walter Luthi ~ The Lord’s Prayer

The powers of darkness love to be without a name.  Nameless, anonymous letters without signatures are usually vulgar – but God is now writer of anonymous letters.  God puts his name on everything He does.

Oswald Chambers ~ The Love of God

Every temptation of the devil is full of the most amazing wisdom…& the lines he advocates bring success.  Christ isn’t on the line of success but on the spiritual line.  If men & women don’t continue to go with Jesus, they will begin to teach what undermines [His] kingdom.

 

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American slave

 

From my earliest recollection, I [held] a deep conviction that slavery would not always be able to hold me within its foul embrace; & in [my] darkest hours, this…spirit of hope did not depart from me, but remained like ministering angels to cheer me thru the gloom.  This good spirit was from God, & to him I offer thanksgiving & praise.

Scriptures

Matthew 10:14-15

Isaiah 57:18

Luke 23:24-25

Romans 5:17

James 1:17

Word for Your Life

Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? ~ Matthew 6:27

A Year with Aslan from Prince Caspian

We can say we trust God, but do we follow his instruction to not be afraid?

After Lucy sees Aslan, she can’t convince the others – so she doesn’t follow.  The next night, Aslan comes again & Lucy starts wondering what would have happened if she’d followed.

Aslan says ..

To know what would’ve happened child…nobody is ever told that.  But anyone can find out what will happen.  If you go back to the others now & wake them up;  & tell them you’ve seen me again; & that you must all get up at once & follow me-what will happen?  There’s only one way to find out.

That may be the most haunting passage in all the Narnia series. We may not be able to know what would’ve happened…but we can know beautiful things will happen if we follow Jesus.

Quotes

A-W Tozer ~ Christ, the Eternal Son

Probably every faithful preacher today is fencing with masters as he faces his congregation. The guard is always up. The quick parry is always ready. It’s very rare for anyone to come into the house of God with guard completely down, head bowed in silent confession.  We’ve become so learned & so sophisticated & so blasé that the clouds of glory seem to have gone from us.

Daily Walk Devotion ~ Intentional Living Center

If we’re going to ask the Lord to reign in us, it has to be all of us.  That’s what leads to Peak Living.

1 Corinthians 9:24 says…

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize?  Run in such a way as to get the prize.

We typically think of that in the context of our spiritual lives, but the same is true physically & emotionally. When we run as if to win the prize, we’re much quicker to take stock of our lives – what we’re putting into our bodies & our minds.

Remember that the enemy of better is good enough.

Francis Chan ~ Multiply

From the beginning of Christianity, the natural overflow of being a disciple of Jesus has always been to make disciples of Jesus. Jesus said “Follow me & I will make you fishers of men”  God’s design has been for every single disciple of Jesus to make disciples who make disciples who make disciples until the gospel spreads to all peoples.  Yet we have subtly taken this costly command of Christ & mutated it into a comfortable call for Christians to come & listen in one location.

Matt Redman ~ Facedown

There’s a whole lot of shouting for joy in some of our worship gatherings, but how much face to the ground devotion do we see?  In Leviticus 9:24 it says the glory of the Lord appeared & fire came out from His presence.  When the people of God saw this, they shouted for joy & fell facedown.

Donald Miller ~ Blue Like Jazz

When we worship God, we worship a Being our life experience does not give us the tools to understand.  If we could, God would not inspire awe. All the wonder of God happens above our formula.  The more I climb outside my pat answers, the more invigorating the view – & the more my heart enters into worship.

Laura Story ~ O Love of God

The only thing that comes natural to me is loving me.  But that’s really where the love of God comes in.  It’s not just that Christ’s example of love inspires us, it actually enables us to love others.  1 Corinthians 13 talks about love being patient & kind.  I’m none of those things…but I believe Christ can be .. through me.

Oswald Chambers ~ My Utmost for His Highest

When God…through His Spirit…gives you a clear vision of His will, you must “walk in the light” of that vision – even though [you] may [not] be thrilled by it.  If you don’t, disobeying will make you a slave to ideas & views that are completely foreign to Christ…& if a New Testament standard is revealed to us & we don’t try to measure up – we begin to backslide.

Scriptures

Ezekiel 34:18

Revelation 6:12-13

Revelation 4

 

Word for Your Life

As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart. ~ Proverbs 27:19

A Year with Aslan from The Lion, the Witch, & the Wardrobe

We were created to multiply the image of God in the world, but there is a point where we have to step up.

As Aslan is showing Cair Paravel to Peter, they hear Susan’s horn blow, indicating she needs help. When they show up, Susan is hanging by a thread onto a tree branch – just out of the reach of a wolf. Several of the other creatures run to take care of business, but Aslan steps in & says ..

BACK!  Let the Prince win his spurs.

Peter was probably the least likely to win victory at that time, & he didn’t feel very brave, but he fought anyway.

Quotes

A-W Tozer ~ The Counselor

He is loving & kind & friendly, the Holy Spirit can be grieved.  Suppose you had a son who began to go bad, & you were called to the police station.  Your boy & another sit there in handcuffs.  You’d feel sorry for the other boy, but you don’t love him like you love your son.  Your grief for your own son would penetrate your heart like a sword.

Daily Walk Devotion ~ Intentional Living Center

One day everyone will know what we know, but living for Him can feel at times like we’re on trial.

That was the case for David Coppedge, a lead scientist on a project for NASA. David believed in the Genesis account of creation, & because of that .. he was fired.

Those kinds of trials can face us too, but in Acts 23 the Apostle Paul says …

I stand on trial because of my hope in the resurrection of the dead.

When we believe that, we may face trials.  We should seek God, asking for his wisdom, & know that He is able to work all things together for the good.

Narrative of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave

I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, & incur my own hatred.

Tim Keller

It’s not the strength of your faith but the object of your faith that actually saves you. Strong faith in a weak branch is fatally inferior to weak faith in a strong branch.

Donald Miller ~ Blue Like Jazz

Jesus puts a song in your heart & helps you get over self-addiction.

David Platt ~ Radical

…Abraham can extend God’s glory – so God’s salvation would be made known to all peoples.  & the reason God let [Shadrach, Meshach, & Abednego] be thrown into a fiery furnace was so they’d come out on the other side without a drop of sweat on their brows, & this pagan king would know [their] God is worthy of praise.

Oswald Chambers ~ My Utmost for His Highest

The questions that really matter in life are remarkably few, & are all answered by these words – Come To Me.  If I will simply come to Jesus, my real life will be brought into harmony with my real desires .. & I’ll find the song of the Lord beginning in my life.

Scriptures

Romans 6:18

Isaiah 43:1

Psalm 51:10

Acts 12

Isaiah 53:3

Word for Your Life

The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble. ~ Proverbs 19:23

A Year with Aslan from The Horse & His Boy

Not only is God indescribable, but often so are his ways.  It needs to be okay that WE walk with Him, while other’s don’t understand.

Lavaraleen keeps trying to convince Aravis to marry this great man who everybody says is going to one of the greatest men in the kingdom, but Aravis isn’t interested.

She wants to go to Narnia with Shasta, a simple peasant .. & when Lavaraleen tells her she’s crazy, because he’s a nobody, Aravis says ..

You forget that I’ll be nobody just like him.

Perhaps one of the most difficult things to embrace is being nobody in this world – & trusting that in HIS kingdom, we’re more than conquerors.

Quotes

A-W Tozer ~ Man: The Dwelling Place of God

When we’re free to go, where do we go? In what company do we feel most at home? Where do our thoughts turn, when the pressure of work or school has lifted, what do we think of then? The answer to these questions may tell us more about ourselves than we can comfortably accept.

Daily Walk Devotion ~ Intentional Living Center

Being called out on the water, like Peter was, can be pretty crazy – especially if the winds & the waves are blowing.  Doubt can be a lot like those storms.

Doubt can be like a tsunami, but instead of tossing cars around it tosses your faith around.  & the person who allows doubt to prevail is unstable, unable to make decisions.

How do we conquer that?  James 1 provides the answer:

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault…But when you ask, you must believe & not doubt.

Matt Redman ~ Facedown

All worship, is a response to revelation.  In worship, explanation gives way to mystery – & mystery leads to reverence & awe.  Where no melody expresses it beautifully enough, & our lives become the songs – & we become awestruck.

Francis Chan ~ Forgotten God

As a church, we tend to tell people who are passionate to mellow out.  Deaden them to the work the Spirit is doing in them.  But in Acts 4, it was just the opposite.  Peter & John, having just been released from prison, went to the others – who prayed they would be even more bold.  Instead of thinking people are crazy, we should join them.

Donald Miller ~ Blue Like Jazz

We have 2 choices in the face of such beauty:  Terror & Awe.  This is why we attempt to chart God, to dissect Him.  We are too proud to feel awe & too fearful to feel terror.

John Eldredge ~ Wild At Heart

A soldier…needs to combine a strong desire for living with a strange carelessness about dying. He must seek his life in a spirit of furious indifference to it; he must desire life like water and yet drink death like wine.

Philip Yancey ~ What’s So Amazing About Grace?

Grace is everywhere, like lenses that go unnoticed because you are looking thru them.  Religious faith, despite its maddening tendency to replicate ungrace, lives on because we sense the beauty of a gift undeserved that comes at unexpected moments from Outside .. & we hope against hope for another place run by different rules.

Scriptures

1 Samuel 2:1-10

Revelation 19:12-13

2 Thessalonians 2:13

Romans 15:1-3