Tag Archives: ministry

Leviticus 20, 21; Matthew 28

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20

A commissioning directly from the mouth of Christ…

He has authority in heaven and in earth and now He is passing on that authority to me.

GO. Make disciples. Baptize. Teach.

He will be with me forever.

As a teenager, I went on a mission trip to Guatemala. It was a life changing experience, as most mission trips are. It opened my eyes to a different world, to different customs, to different beliefs. It opened my eyes to lack – financial scarcity, shortage of love, and poverty of spirit – and to need. During that trip, a desire to serve people entered my heart. A short time later, at a Christian conference for teenagers, I felt God’s call to the mission field.

The timing wasn’t right…I was 16. I couldn’t just go. Though I applied for other mission trips, I was consistently turned down. It discouraged me and I gave up the dream. I turned away from my faith.

Fast forward nearly 15 years later. My passion for the Lord reignited, I was on fire. I went to every gathering, Bible study, or worship session I could go to. In one meeting, while Heidi Baker prayed for me, I heard the call to ‘GO’ once more. It was time.

I still didn’t know what it meant to ‘GO’. At first, I thought that it meant traveling to a foreign nation, going to an underdeveloped county in the third world. I though it meant living in a small pocket of the 10/40 window. I thought it meant going to Africa or China or India.

And, it does mean that…

But, it also means going to friends and family who don’t know Christ. It means going into my neighborhood, to the hospital, to the nearby retirement home or assisted living community. It means being a mentor to children who don’t have many quality role models. It means reaching out, giving my time, my energy, my talents, my money.

‘GO’ means loving the ‘unlovable’ no matter where I am and stopping for the one God asks me to stop for.

Yesappa, Thank You for stopping for me; for giving everything you have for my redemption, for my life. Thank You for making me holy, for separating me, and making me Yours (Leviticus 20:26). Thank You for calling me, for giving me Your authority to preach the gospel, and for sending me to Your children who have yet to recognize You as Father. Help me make disciples. Help me baptize in Your Holy Name. Help me teach Your commands. Thank You for Your strength, and for being with me forever. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Blessings – Julie (writing from Sholavandan)

Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Filed under 66 Books, ESV Through the Bible in a Year, Leviticus, Matthew, New Testament, Old Testament

1Kings 17; Colossians 4; Ezekiel 47; Psalm 103

fall tree in my backyardMy daughter turns eleven tomorrow. I sat in the kitchen with my husband on Sunday and felt the emotional lump growing in my throat as I talked about making her birthday popovers on a day with an early start and a busy pace. I would do it, and do it happily, because these years fly by–this season (motherhood) feels like it’s rushing by me.

The time before seemed leisurely. But these years after our move, time flies.

Fall’s leafy cascade across my lawn, a changing season. Time moves on.

13 The Lord is like a father to his children,
    tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
14 For he knows how weak we are;
    he remembers we are only dust.
15 Our days on earth are like grass;
    like wildflowers, we bloom and die.
16 The wind blows, and we are gone—
    as though we had never been here. Psalm 103:13-16 NLT

Today’s passages are a reminder and refrain: Make the most of every opportunity.

Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart. Pray for us, too, that God will give us many opportunities to speak about his mysterious plan concerning Christ. That is why I am here in chains. Pray that I will proclaim this message as clearly as I should.

Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Colossians 4:2-5 NLT

Paul was in prison for proclaiming the gospel, and perhaps, too, to proclaim it there. His sight is focused on opportunity–to serve the Lord wherever he finds himself.

In a different time of life, I remember treading the days, waiting with hope for a new season. The Lord would teach me to serve through the wait, that I might say even then: this is why I am here. I learned, more clearly in hindsight, to see opportunity in trial.

17 And say to Archippus, “Be sure to carry out the ministry the Lord gave you.” Colossians 4:17 NLT.

I don’t look at this season of motherhood as a prison–it is a gift, sticky and messy and loud. It is a piece of the Why I Am Here: to wake to laundry and popovers and homework to do. To trash days and chores and grocery trips. There is more to these days than the tasks I have numbered–there is a mysterious plan that I am to speak about and many opportunities to speak about it, in my home and outside of it.

Father God: Thank you for this ministry of motherhood. I pray that I will proclaim your message. I pray that I will make the most of every opportunity in word or deed. On the best days, or on the worst, let me always point to your grace and great love for the world.

Courtney (66books365)

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Colossians, Ezekiel, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, New Testament, Old Testament, Psalms

Lev. 25; Ps. 32; Eccles. 8; 2 Tim. 4

I’ll never forget going to summer church camp as a child and going on the horse trails.  Younger years there was a trainer who led as you rode, and I longed for the day when I could take the reins and ride ALONE.  Well, that year finally came and I was so excited and jumped up on my horse, named LUCKY, and I began to trot off.  I tried to turn the horse left, he wanted to go right. When I made attempts to slow down, he sped up going off the course causing the saddle to come loose and me to fall off.  Thankfully the only injury was my ego! Someone retrieved Lucky and helped me back on, showing me  the proper way to lead him.  When the trail ended, we were handing the horses to the next riders and I handed over the reins and said, “If you are as lucky as I was on Lucky, then you will definitely be taught a thing or two!”

In Psalms 32:8-9 it says: “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.  Do not be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control.”

My horse had a bit and bridle, but it was me who was out of control with my thinking–requiring a spiritual bit and bridle to be put upon me to keep my pride in order. I love how we are promised that God will guide us along every pathway and watch over us. He does not need us to plan our own routes and hold tightly to the reins.

Life-changing moments stand out: the horse’s saddle, and the old, wooden, splintery pew in an outdoor open chapel service at the camp that same week.  For that is where I released the control of the reins of my life and heart over to the Lord.

Ecclesiastes 8:17 “This reminded me that no one can discover everything God has created in our world, no matter how hard they work at it.  Not even the wisest people know everything, even if they say they do!”

Lord, I ask that when I start to believe that I have it all under control and know everything, I pray that you knock me off the saddle again and help me to willingly hand back the reins and give you the control of my thoughts, actions, words and paths I take in life.

Leviticus 25:20-21 “But you might ask, ‘What will we eat during the seventh year, since we are not allowed to plant or harvest crops that year?” “I will order my blessing for you in the sixth year, so the land will produce a bumper crop, enough to support you for three years.”

BOUNTIFUL BLESSINGS OVERFLOWING! He doesn’t owe me an answer, but I’m thankful that He always does give one IN HIS TIMING and I’m working harder each day at having more  faith that when He says GO LEFT I will GO LEFT, even if I really  think going right would be better! Sitting down in a seat of Faith will provide for me a better pathway paved!

2 Timothy 4:3-5 “For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to right teaching.  They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever they want to hear.  They will reject the truth and follow strange myths.  But you should keep a clear mind in every situation.  Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at bringing others to Christ.  Complete the ministry God has given you.”

I’m thankful for what I have been given and pray that I use it properly to help LEAD others to Christ!

Erica (guest on 66 Books)

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Filed under 2 Timothy, 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Ecclesiastes, Leviticus, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, Psalms

Joshua 10, 11,12; Luke 10:1-24

Luke 10:2

He gave them this charge: “What a huge harvest! And how few the harvest hands. So on your knees; ask the God of the Harvest to send harvest hands.” MSG

He told them, “The harvest is large, but the workers are few. So ask the Lord who gives this harvest to send workers to harvest his crops.” GW

And He said to them, “The harvest indeed is abundant [there is much ripe grain], but the farmhands are few. Pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” AMP

He said to them, “There is a large harvest, but few workers to gather it in. Pray to the owner of the harvest that he will send out workers to gather in his harvest.” GNT

Therefore said he unto them, “The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.” KJV

Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. NKJV

He said to them, “There are a great many people to harvest, but there are only a few workers. So pray to God, who owns the harvest, that he will send more workers to help gather his harvest.” NCV

He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” NIV

These were his instructions to them: “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields. NLT

Then said he unto them, `The harvest indeed [is] abundant, but the workmen few; beseech ye then the Lord of the harvest, that He may put forth workmen to His harvest.” YLT

Greek Interlinear Bible Greek Interlinear Bible

Additional translations and languages

Dear heavenly Father,

I come before you today to ask for the provision of laborers for Your harvest. Jesus explained that the harvest of people who will choose to believe You is a vast field, as vast as the surfaces of the world. There have been Gospel seeds planted in the hearts of many and yet there are so many more seeds to be planted. And, as those seeds are planted, watered, fertilized, and cultivated the need for harvesters grows greater and greater. As the end days grow nearer and more and more untouched people hear the Good News, as more and more people obey Your call to ‘Go,’ the fields are getting fuller and bearing more fruit. Lord, but as You said, there are not enough hands to do all of the Kingdom work that needs to be done. Father, I ask You, You who are the Master of the harvest and the Lord of the harvesters, release and commission more of those who are willing to go to all areas of the world. Release volunteers to help ministries both in their local communities and across the Earth. Let loose those who are willing to do ANYTHING for You, from cleaning a latrine to creating newsletters and websites to stuffing and addressing envelopes to living among the people who need you the most. Unleash apostles, prophets, evangelists, preachers, and teachers to impart and explain the Gospel to the lost men, women, and children. Let there be an outpouring of helpers like a flood gate opening. Let there be a supernatural unity between organizations and denominations that brings all of the laborers together in one accord with one heart, and one goal – loving people into Your Kingdom. Let there be a day when all will say, “They came out in full force, all their troops massed together—a huge army, in number like sand on an ocean beach” (Joshua 11:4). It will be an army of Your believers, mighty men, women, and children of the One True Living God, ready to fight with love. It will be an army of workhands prepared to reap the harvest for Your Kingdom. Father, only You can make it happen. Release it Lord, release it! Help us Holy Ghost! In Jesus name. Amen.

Blessings – Julie, Vadipatti, India

For more information about the ministry we do in India, please feel free to contact my husband and I at immovablegraceministries@zoho.com. We are currently working on creating our website.

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Joshua, Luke, New Testament, Old Testament

Jonah

Scripture

“I descended to the roots of the mountains. The earth with its bars was around me forever, But You have brought up my life from the pit, O LORD my God.

I knew that You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, and one who relents concerning calamity.”

Jonah 2:6; 4:2b

Observation

Most of the books written by the prophets are about their visions, their audience, their message, the outcome. But Jonah is mostly about him, about Jonah.

Only about 6 verses are really about his message and the result (Jonah 3:5-10). The rest of the book deals with Jonah’s defiance, running away, repentance, prayers about himself, reassessing life from the belly of a fish, griping that the people actually listened to him, and throwing a pity party.

Made me think . . .

Application

How often does ministry minister more to those involved in leading it than those it is directed toward? I need to be and stay involved, God’s talking to ME!

God works in ways we never expect.

God’s not finished with me, and I hope I can learn the lessons He has without needing to swim in digestive juices to listen and obey.

I need to trust God with the outcomes — good or bad.

God sometimes needs to drag me down for me to be ready to listen. (Reminds me of Amos 3:6 from earlier this week — if there’s a calamity, didn’t God cause it? If we weren’t so desperately stubborn and deaf, He might not have to shout so loud).

Prayer

Lord, Forgive me for my selfishness that keeps me from sharing You. Help me listen more readily, and share more freely. I want to always run toward You. ~Amen

Erin (5intow)

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Filed under Jonah, Old Testament