Why fear?

February 16, 2015 — Leave a comment

In Matthew 10:28-31 we’re commanded to not fear. The reasoning behind this command is that nothing in this (temporary) life can ever touch your (eternal) soul. So even if you are at risk of death, you don’t fear because the worse-case-scenario is death of your body, and it’s going to to die eventually anyway.

The passage further reassures us against fear by letting us know that God knows his children. He knows their name and their location and even the number of hairs on their heads.

Fear melts when there is someone who can remedy any situation. As a child, I never feared the dark when my father was with me.

Well child of God, your father is with you. So live without fear. Cast your cares upon him. Refuse to be paralyzed by fear and instead run your race with endurance.

“Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell. What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows. (‭Matthew‬ ‭10‬:‭28-31‬ NLT)

Obey without delay

February 3, 2015 — Leave a comment

After the wise men were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother,” the angel said. “Stay there until I tell you to return, because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.” That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother,

When Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt. “Get up!” the angel said. “Take the child and his mother back to the land of Israel, because those who were trying to kill the child are dead.” So Joseph got up and returned to the land of Israel with Jesus and his mother. (‭Matthew‬ ‭2‬:‭13-14, 19-21‬ NLT)

Joseph was quick to obey. When God gave an order there was no argument. When God said, “Take Mary as your wife,” he did. When God said, “Go to Egypt,” they packed their bags. When God said, “It’s safe to return,” they went home.

We should be as quick to obey, but too often we struggle and resist. We make excuses or try to convince God of our plan. Sometimes we just disobey. I am all for praying and asking God for what you want. I believe in praying to be sure you know his next step for you. But once we hear his word for us, we must obey without delay.

God is in control

February 2, 2015 — Leave a comment

All those listed above include fourteen generations from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the Babylonian exile, and fourteen from the Babylonian exile to the Messiah. (‭Matthew‬ ‭1‬:‭17‬ NLT)

In Matthew 1:1-16 we get what is called “Matthew’s Begats.” A listing of the ancestors of Jesus. I am always struck by verse 17 though. 14 generations from Abraham to David. 14 generations from David to the exile. 14 generations from the exile to Jesus…

If you ever doubt that God knows what is going on in your life or that he is sovereign over the universe, read that verse again. Nothing was by accident. God sees order in the chaos. God knows right where you are as his child and he is always working to see His will come to be.

And one day, we too will see his timing in our waiting and his plan in our frustrations and ultimately his will being done on earth as it is heaven.

When this vision came to me, I, Daniel, had been in mourning for three whole weeks. All that time I had eaten no rich food. No meat or wine crossed my lips, and I used no fragrant lotions until those three weeks had passed. (‭Daniel‬ ‭10‬:‭2-3‬ NLT)

We’ve been fasting intentionally for three weeks. This is the 21st day. Some of us have been on a Daniel Fast as described in the verse above, while others have been fasting in different ways.

Our purpose was discipline, focus, clarity and dependence upon God. Daniel fasted so he could know and understand the Word of the Lord. I hope you’ve found some clarity and direction over the last three weeks.

Today as we conclude our fast, let us thank God once again for his provision, love and goodness to us. Let’s continue to cry out for spiritual renewal and a deeper commitment. Let’s not stop praying for lost friends and family members. Let’s always lift up our families. Let’s pray for our church and for God blessing upon our work for his Glory.

I hope you’ll join me today, January 31st at 4pm, for a special time of prayer and worship at the Verge Church building to conclude our 21 days together before God.

I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me. (‭John‬ ‭17‬:‭21‬ NLT)

Jesus prayed for our unity. He prayed that we would be united like the he and Father are united. This unity will be a witness to everyone around us that Jesus is truly the Son of God.

Today, pray that we as believers will be unified. Pray specifically for unity within the body of Verge Church.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. (‭John‬ ‭3‬:‭16-17‬ ESV)

God loves people. So much so that he held nothing back in sending Jesus. He didn’t come to condemn, but save all who would repent.

Let’s love people like that. Ask God in prayer to give you his heart for people who need forgiveness and new life.

And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness. (‭Acts‬ ‭4‬:‭29-31‬ ESV)

They prayed not for deliverance from the threats, they prayed for BOLDNESS to continue witnessing and preaching the gospel. And when they prayed, the place was shaken and God answered their prayer by filling them with his Holy Spirit.

Let’s pray for boldness.

You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong. (‭Hebrews‬ ‭5‬:‭12-14‬ NLT)

We all come to a place in life where we realize that we need to grow up. For some, you seemed to mature just as intended and your parents were thrilled to see you spread your wings and fly. For others, you didn’t get it that easily (maybe you still haven’t) and difficult conversations or life events force this realization upon you.

In Hebrews 5, the author is having a difficult conversation with his readers. It’s time to grow up. You’ve been walking with Jesus long enough and you should be leading and teaching others by now.

What I know is that if you are a few steps ahead of me in your walk, you can help to lead me at least that far. You don’t have to know it all and understand every facet of the Bible to share with those who know very little or nothing at all of the goodness of the gospel.

Here is my prayer challenge for us today. Pray that we will grow and mature in Christ. That we will grow up and step up and become the people God is calling us to be.

“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost? And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn’t wander away! (‭Matthew‬ ‭18‬:‭12-13‬ NLT)

Jesus came for the one that is lost. It is easy to focus on our needs, our struggles, or even our fellow believers, but today lets pray for the lost among us. Pray for your friends, family members, coworkers and neighbors who desperately need to be found by the saving power of the Gospel.

If you’d like me to pray with you for someone specific I would love nothing more. Send me a message at cary@caryweaver.com

Then Jonah prayed to the LORD his God from inside the fish. (‭Jonah‬ ‭2‬:‭1‬ NLT)

God had Jonah right where he wanted him. After his rebellion, God has pursued him and cornered him because he loved him.

We may find ourselves at rock-bottom with nowhere else to turn, but in those moments we are probably exactly where we need to be for God to work in us and with us.

Let’s let our prayer be like that of Jonah in the verses following this passage: confession, praise, repentance, commitment.