Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 07/30/17

July 31, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Ezekiel:

He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.” (Ezekiel 37:3)

At times our spiritual life can become bone dry. For some reason we feel like we’re not connected to the Lord as we were before. We may sometimes seem to have lost our motivation to pray, to read the word, to go to church, to seek the Lord. God may seem distant or just not there. A spiritual dryness comes over us and we become dry and withered in our spirit. We may know that we need to get back into the living water that flows from beneath the throne of grace, but not how to get there. Let us begin with calling upon the Lord in repentance and in thanksgiving. Call upon the name of the Lord and recall all He has done for you in the past. Repent of any wrongs and give Him thanks for all He has done. Praise His name, sing to Him a song, pray and read His word aloud. Let His words water your soul and refresh your spiritual life.

May the Lord of glory give you grace this very day.

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Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 07/23/17

July 24, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Matthew:

Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people.   (Matt. 4:23)

Good things happen when Jesus is present in our lives. If we read and follow His word we learn what He wants us to learn and we can then teach others. Knowing His word we can spread the good news of the kingdom of God to all around us and to the ends of the Earth. And it is Jesus who changes us from who we were before we knew Him to who we are supposed to be. He heals us in all the ways we need to be healed. It is miraculous that He heals us spiritually, mentally, and physically. When we come into the Lord’s presence with praise and thanksgiving we make ourselves available for the power of the Holy Spirit to come over us to heal us and make us whole, and to make us more and more like Christ. Let us come before the Lord with prayer, praise, and thanksgiving; let us come into His presence and be healed.

May the Lord bless you with His presence.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 07/16/17

July 18, 2017

This week’s scripture is from 2 Timothy:

You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus.  (2 Tim. 2:1 ESV)

We know that God loves us, that He is for us and not against us. We are grateful for those times when He intercedes for us like when we are healed or made well, or when a difficult or seemingly impossible situation is resolved or made right, sometimes in ways that only God can do. But this is not always so. God takes the eternal view on things.

Sometimes He does not change the difficult situation in a wonderful way; sometimes He allows us to go through the fire; sometimes we or our loved one does not get well or fully recover. Sometimes God is more interested in strengthening our faith than in our current situation, for He wants us to turn to Him, to rely on Him, to find our strength in His strength, to know the depth of His grace, to bind ourselves to Christ and Christ alone, for He has said that His grace is sufficient. May it be so with us.

May the Lord bless you with His grace in your life.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 07/09/17

July 13, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Malachi:

“For I am the Lord, I change not.”  (Malachi 3:6a)

How can we be sure in a world that is ever-changing? It seems everything around us keeps changing. What is here today may not be here tomorrow. People come into our lives and people go. What we have today we may not have tomorrow. The news says this, the news says that. Yesterday it said this was true, but today it is not. Nations clash and the world is tilted on its axis. Yet there is one who does not change; He is not tossed about by the waves of time and trial. Nothing surprises Him or throws Him off-balance, ever, for the Lord is steadfast and true; He is righteous and always perfect. His timing is perfect; His word is perfect; His love is perfect. He changes not. Let us lay hold of Him who is unwavering and unchanging.

May the Lord be your rock and your righteous blessing.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 07/02/17

July 4, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Galatians:

“You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free.”   (Gal. 5:13a)

Our freedom is found in Christ alone, for in Christ we are set free from the bondage of sin and death. Christ calls us to be free by being in Christ and following Him. Let us celebrate our freedom in Christ by giving it to others. Let us follow His commandment to spread the Good News of salvation, for coming to salvation in Christ is coming into the freedom found in Christ. Let us explore our freedom in Christ by drawing ever closer to Him who sets us free, for the closer we are to Him the more free we will be from the bondage and sin of this world. Find your freedom in Christ and be free as He wants you to be free.

May the Lord bless you with the freedom found only in Christ Jesus.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 06/25/17

June 28, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Psalms:

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1 ESV)

The Lord said that troubles will come and each day has trouble enough, but God is there for us in every situation. Though our world be turned upside down, though even the earth itself give way, though nations and kingdoms rise up and fall, the Lord Almighty is with us. He will be our strength and our fortress; He is our shield. He will be there to help us in any kind of trouble. In our own lives, when trouble comes, let us remember to turn to Him who is always there for us, for He says we are to come to Him and to be still and know that He is God. He is all-powerful. He is for us and not against us, for He loves us as His children.

May the Lord bless you with His love and mercy each day.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 06/18/17

June 19, 2017

This week’s scripture is from John:

“Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”  (John 4:48)

Certainly Jesus performed signs and wonders, and many remarkable miracles, several of which are recorded in the scriptures, including feeding 5000 people with a boy’s lunch and healing the sick, the lame, and the dying, casting out demons, and even raising the dead to life. Some of us have been fortunate enough to see miracles in our own lives or in the lives of others in our time which have taken place through the power of Jesus’ blood and the Holy Spirit, but our faith does not rest in miracles or signs and wonders. Our faith, our belief, our trust rests in Him who is holy and righteous, the One who brought us salvation, the greatest miracle of all, that we might be reconciled to the Father and know Him. Christ is the greatest of miracles.

May the Lord bless you to believe.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 06/11/17

June 12, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Matthew:

“And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” (Matt. 6:13 NET)

A time of trial and testing is never pleasant, but sometimes the Lord uses such times to build us up spiritually. Such times force us to flex our spiritual muscles and thereby strengthen us to stand against temptations, against the wiles of the enemy of our soul, the accuser who continually delights to point out our failures and number our sins against us before the Lord. But there is One who sits at the right hand of the Father continually making intercession for us, who can deliver us from the evil one, for He is the One who was without sin, who sacrificed Himself that we might be able to stand and resist evil and temptation in His name and by the power of His blood. Let us not fail to call on Him in times of trial and temptation.

May the Lord bless you and deliver you from evil.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 06/04/17

June 5, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Mark:

And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” (Mark 15:16)

Let us be obedient to the Lord’s command. Let us proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ into a lost and dying world, that He is the way, the truth, and the life, that He came that we might believe, repent, and be forgiven of our sins. Let us be bold to tell others what the Lord has done, and what He has done for us. His story in your life is the greatest witness you can give. Tell others how He came into your life and what He has done in your life, how you’ve been saved and how you are living out your faith in Him. Be His witness in your life, for then the Holy Spirit will draw them and bring them to repentance and new life. Share the good news, let them hear it, for faith comes by hearing and the message is through our Lord.

May the Lord make you bold to speak the good news to others.

Strengthen and Encourage the Brethren 05/28/17

May 29, 2017

This week’s scripture is from Luke:

And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” (Luke 22:19 ESV)

Let us remember Him who gave His life for us that we might live, for Jesus came that we might be reconciled to God by shedding His blood for our sins. He paid the debt we cannot pay, for it is by His blood that we are forgiven our trespasses, and it is by His sacrifice, His body beaten and broken and bleeding, that we can live, for our sins were nailed to the cross that He died upon. He who was sinless became sin for us that we might not perish but have everlasting life with the Father who sent His one and only son to save us from ourselves and redeem us from the pit. Let us praise Him, and give thanks.

May the Lord bless you to always remember what was given for you.