Do Not Despise These Small Beginnings

Small things

Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin (Zechariah 4: 10)

It is the little words you speak, the little thoughts you think, the little things you do or leave undone, the little moments you waste or use wisely, the little temptations which you yield to or overcome—the little things of every day that are making or marring your future life.—Selected.

 

URGENT NEWS! Soldiers Forced To Buy Their Own Ammunitions

Soldiers Forced To Buy Their Own Ammunition!  Are you outraged?  How can this be?  How can the American people allow such a thing to happen in a rich country such as the United States?

 Relax, our government is not doing this, but the Church of Jesus Christ is!

Do you remember the beginning of the Iraq wars?  Many soldiers were injured or killed due to lack of proper protection for themselves and their vehicles.  The American people were outraged and the government began to make immediate improvements to better supply our soldiers in harm’s way.  So what am I talking about?  I am talking about American Christian Soldiers:  Missionaries to other countries!

So many missionaries today are being forced to buy their own supplies and buy their own way to the mission field.  However, this is nothing new, sadly it is the norm!  I have read the history of such missionaries as Hudson Taylor, missionary to China in late 1800 and George Muller, German missionary to England in the late 1800’s.  They were both forced to live in extreme hardship due to the lack of support for their missions. 

Can you imagine seeing our brave American soldiers coming home and delivering pizzas or doing odd jobs to go and purchase their own weapons to go back and fight for our American freedom and liberties? The American people would never stand for such atrocities as this.  But Christianity has allowed this to continue for centuries.  Why is this acceptable to the Church of Jesus Christ, where the greatest example of giving is ultimately shown by our God and Lord Jesus Christ when he was sent to die for us on the cross?

John 3;16: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

If you never thought of this, Jesus was a missionary to our world.  He came from Heaven to a very hostile and violent world.  It is the same today as missionaries go to front lines in this world, where there are very violent and hostile people around them.  Many are being sent not only to hostile environments, but they are also inadequately supplied to do what God has called them to do.

The “spiritual Christian” at this point might say: “God shall supply all  your needs.”  While this is true in a general sense, I feel that this is not God’s intent nor desire.  I have seen missionaries having to take sabbaticals just to go home in order to earn enough money to spend in their mission field.  I have also witnessed other missionaries using their life savings or their retirement checks to offset their lack of support.  Then there is the worst: many Christian missionaries give up after just ONE tour of duty! How sad is that, but it is a reality being played over and over on the mission field, even though they come from the richest Christian nation in the world!  I do not believe this is God’s desire or intent!

I want to confess before I go any further, I was the same as most Christians are today.  Unaware of this horrible condition, or worse yet, I found that I was just not paying attention to the Christian world around me.

I was a youth pastor for over 18 years in 2 small independent churches.  Every year our churches would be visited by missionaries and tell us of their work in foreign fields.  My heart would go out to them and I would always give in the offering basket.  But after they were gone, I simply went back to my work and soon forgot them in my thoughts, prayers and my WALLET!

I was no different!  As I rationalized, I wasn’t rich and I was barely making it just taking care of my own family and my own bills.  This did not stop me from buying coffee every morning at the local convenient store, or buying lunches, renting movies, taking my family out or ordering pizza every Friday.  But, when you add this normal lifestyle (luxury) up, how much did I spend a month not even considering how I could help keep a family on the mission field.

Adding up this expense, I calculated that I was spending $31.25 a month.  That was for $1.25 coffee, what does a cup of coffee cost today?  Now add up the movie rentals and other weekly habits we just take for granted.  I realize now that I was simply not paying enough attention to our Lord’s call to each and every one of us.  I was no different than many Christians today that also attend church every Sunday.  Then God got my attention!

How did God get My Attention?

God called me to be a foreign missionary. After years in the field and living in a different culture, when I came back to the United States my eyes were opened to my own sins of the past.  

I have now come to see how many in our churches and even our pastors do not show concern for the American Christian Soldiers Missionary.  Why do I call us “soldiers?”  Some of us are sent to the front lines of very violent and dark countries, where the work of the devil is fierce.  Risking our lives for the gospel of Jesus Christ.

In these countries, I have seen poverty at levels not known in America.  I’ve seen families sell their daughters into prostitution just to feed the rest of the family.  Then I come back to America and people tell me how hard the economy is as they buy their new cars and upgrade their homes. We are a consumer nation. We are actually deceived money that we make is really ares as Christians. I write more on that in the upcoming blogs.

Do you also know most Christian today spend more on their pets than on missions?  We also spend more money on Christian seminars, books and several different translations of the Bible.  Christians in America are no different than Christians elsewhere in the world when it comes to our entertainment, in fact, we may be worse as we have more opportunity.  We spend millions and millions of dollars on Christian music and concerts.  I was reading that one famous Christian Artist is worth around 10 million dollars.  That is just one artist and not counting his record label.

We are spending more money on Television Evangelists and TV ministries who are grossing hundreds of millions of dollars a year.  We are giving more money to them than our own local churches and missionaries.  

On the day when we face the Lord what will we say as He opens up our checkbook of life and shows that we spent more of His money on our pets than we did for reaching a lost world for Jesus Christ.

I have come to believe that every Christian in America not only should support their local church (currently only 2-3 percent actually tithe) but we should adopt a missionary too.  But unfortunately, we think this is the responsibility only of our Pastors and a local church.  (Where do you think the local church gets its money)?  How wrong I believe we will be when we face the Lord.

I have nothing against Television Evangelists, but do they come and pray for your family, marry and bury you, visit you in the hospital? Our hard working Pastors do this!  Do these TV Evangelists go to foreign mission fields and sell everything they have accumulated in their life?  Do they risk their lives to spread the Gospel where no one wants to go?  Do they live in deplorable, dangerous conditions?  No, of course not – they are too busy raking in millions of dollars!

But American Christians are just like like the rest of the secular world,  we pay sports stars and rock stars more than we pay our soldiers, police, firefighters and teachers.  We want our entertainment and we gladly shell out millions of dollars to be entertained.

I admit I would have died, unaware of this condition if the Lord did not call me to the mission field, and one real reason is…. We as missionaries are trained not to talk about this and we are simply to trust in the Lord for his provision.  To a degree, I agree but why are so many missionaries coming home dejected, depressed and defeated.  They are unable to make a real and lasting impact in the area where God called them.

This is an area where the body of Christ is dropping the ball.  Christians have lost their fervor and we are losing the war to such religions and sects as Islam, Mormonism, and others.  Do you know one of the best missionary forces for their sect is Mormonism?  They have the best trained and best facilities on the mission field.  They are organized and well supported in their efforts.  Islam is also in every  European country, and now in America.  They are taking over due to their well thought out plan to convert the world to Islam.  We Christians in America are the richest and most influential people in the world and 97 percent of all of the Lord’s money is spent on us!  This leads me to my upcoming blogs: “Living in the Laodicean Church in America in the End Times”

I pray that this article not only upset you but also convicted you to look at your life and how you are spending the Lord’s money.  Are you being a faithful steward or are you just another American consumer? So please ask the Lord today to open your heart and your finances to see if you are obedient to Him.  It is better to ask now and repent than at the judgment seat of Christ.  He will look to you and ask this question?  What did you do with what I have given you in your Christian life?  Will you be prepared and have a good answer?

Written by Dennis Stauffer

Edited by Gary Green (Omega House)

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USE WORDS ONLY WHEN NECESSARY

At All Times Preach the Gospel if Needed Use Words:

Being a missionary to a foreign country, where I do not speak the language very well, this came in useful and how much more in the United States, where I do speak the language!

Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Matt.5;14

Lamps do not talk, but they do shine. A lighthouse sounds no drum, it beats no gong; and yet far over the waters its friendly spark is seen by the mariner. So let your actions shine out your religion. Let the main sermon of your life be illustrated by all your conduct.—Charles Spurgeon.

 

Have I Not Commanded You?

Joshua 1:9  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

“Have I Not Commanded You”?  To do what God calls us to do, we must remember that being “strong, courageous and not being afraid is a COMMAND, not a FEELING.  We must be obedient to follow His directions.

Because if it is really God who called you; YOU WILL NEED THIS VERSE! He only calls us to do what He can do, not what we can do on our own.

Draw Near

Delay not, delay not, O sinner, draw near. The waters of life are now flowing for thee; No price is demanded, the Savior is here; Redemption is purchased, salvation is free.

Delay not, delay not, the Spirit of grace, Long grieved and resisted, may take His sad flight, and leave thee in darkness to finish thy race, to sink in the groom of eternity’s night.

Thomas Hasting (1784-1872)

Fresh Manna

Exodus 16:4 Then said the Lord unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day……

21 And they gathered it every morning, every man according to his eating:

What worked Yesterday does not mean it will work today!

Go get fresh manna!

Let God supply you according to each new day’s needs.

Need Help in Overcoming FEAR?

As I sit here today planning and WORRY about my returning to Guatemala on Christmas Day. The fear of the future started grabbing at my heart. I turned to prayer and God gave me this from the “God Calling” book.  I do believe Jesus spoke to these ladies. This book has ministered to me for years in this same manner. It never fails, when I am faced with something overwhelming, I turn to the Bible and this book and I  always find my answer. May this devotional encourage you today!

Perfect Love

Our Lord, give us that Perfect Love of Thee that casts out all fear.

Never let yourselves fear anybody or anything. No fear of My failing you. No fear that your faith will fail you. No fear of poverty or loneliness. No fear of not knowing the way. No fear of others. No fear of their misunderstanding.

But, My children, this absolute casting out of fear is the result of a Perfect Love, a perfect Love of Me and My Father. Speak to Me about everything. Listen to Me at all times. Feel My tender nearness, substituting at once some thought of Me for the fear.

The powers of evil watch you as a besieging force would watch a guarded city — the object being always to find some weak spot, attack that, and so gain an entrance. So evil lurks around you, and seeks to surprise you in some fear.

The fear may have been but a small one, but it affords evil a weak spot of attack and entrance, and then in some rushing despondency, doubt of Me, and so many other sins. Pray, My beloved children, for that Perfect Love of Me that indeed casts out all fear.- Jesus

Intimacy; Learning How To Talk to God Part IV

This is my favorite part!  In the past 30 years, I have learned to do one thing right and that is I have learned how to communicate with God.  When I was first seeking God, as I shared in my testimony in Part III, I learned how to throw out a lot of religious practices and did it my own way without all those religious trappings.  I want to share some of what I learned, what to do and what not to do.  I hope I can give you some insights to being intimate with God.

God is a Person

I shared that God is a person in my last article but I wanted to go over it again.   This concept is huge and it is where most people mess up.  Again, God is a person and if we take away all the religious trappings, and approach Yahweh, as you would any other person, you will go a lot further.  I have a feeling most people believe they have to approach God as in the scene from the “Wizard of Oz.”  In that scene there is a loud intimidating voice with smoke and flames coming up, then Dorothy squeamishly goes forward to meet the great Oz.  However, we do not have to approach God in such an intimidated manner.  The Bible gives us a much better way to approach God.

Hebrews 4:16; Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
God wants us to come boldly without fear, as a child comes to their own dad.  When I began praying, I just simply threw all the old stuff away and began to talk.  There was no more religious stuff.  I just came and told God; “I would like to get to know you.”  I really wanted to know for myself if all the things I had heard about God were true.  This was the only way I knew to figure this out.  If He was real I would approach Him as I would any other person and meet Him.
I became, in a way just like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, she just had to meet him so she could go home.  I had to find God in order to survive this addiction that had me for so long.  I did not want to learn second hand.  So for 6 months I was persistent and faithful to talk to God and listen.  I was on a search and I searched for Him like He was gold and limitless treasure.
Psalm 63:1  O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;
PRAYER

With today’s technology, we should have no problem understanding prayer.  We are the generation with Skype, Messenger, What up apps, and Facebook to name a few.  We certainly should understand how to communicate via long distance.  Today we can chat instantly with anyone around the world, even if you cannot see them or hear them.

Well, that big religious word “prayer” simply means to communicate with God.  That is all it means and yet we unnecessarily complicate it in the church and the world.  Please do not get me wrong there are different types of prayers written in the Bible, but for our purposes here I want to simplify it as much as possible.  The reason for that is if you do not get this one down, the rest is useless or will lead you to some religious bondage that will only frustrate you in the long run.

Another big mistake people make is thinking prayer is a monolog.  That it is a one-way street, or it is some pre-learned prayer, we recite over and over again.  Prayer is a dialogue, which means it is a two-way conversation.

We are not designed to do all the talking.  God would love to speak, but most of the people I have watched only say their part and then they are gone out the door.  That leaves God sitting there wanting to answer, but those praying are already gone.  So to speak we have already hung up the phone.

This is the biggest reason so many in the church have never heard Him.   They rattle off their wish list or petitions and say in the name of Jesus and then hang up.  God is on the other end saying; “hello, hello, well they must have hung up, and I was going to share with them about their request.”  So we go through life believing either God does not answer our prayers or believing that hearing God is only for the super-elite Christians.  Let me share how I heard God even before I asked Jesus into my life and became born-again.

So all prayer is communication – a two-way dialogue.  The bible tells us to “pray without ceasing.”  When a religious person hears that, they automatically think that it is a lot of work and dedication.  They think they need to dedicate their life to prayer.  They think it will take years to learn how to stay in the mode of prayer.  Let me reassure you, it does not.  Think about when you used to talk for hours on the phone with your new boyfriend or girlfriend.  Think about how much time we spend on text messages?  We can spend hours on those things, if we think the person on the other end is worth it.  Let me share this, GOD IS WORTH IT AND HE LOVES TO TALK TO YOU ALL THE TIME!!!

When I pray, if you could hear me, you would think I was talking to my best friend.  Othertimes it might sound as if I was talking to my dad. Then there are times I just include Him in my day while riding in the car, at the mall or at a restaurant when I am alone and I want someone to talk to.  Do not get me wrong, I am not nuts and I do not sit there talking aloud to an empty chair.

If you read my last article, I shared that during the evening of June 10 I first talked to God in the physical realm.  Later that evening, God told me to go and sleep in my broken down Mustang.  As I sat there and tried to fall asleep, I began to talk to Him about how to fix my car and how to find a place to live.  To make a long story short, every time I asked God for something, even something as simple as the need for a blanket, one showed up.  Then I said I needed some money to get my car fixed and at 3 o’clock in the morning a woman I knew knocked on my car window and gave me a blanket and lent me enough money to get a car part.

As God began working mysteriously in my life, I was so happy that I thought all I needed now is a vehicle to go get that car part.  The same woman who gave me the blanket and cash, now showed back up and offered me her car.  The next day I bought the part and the car was fixed but I was still homeless.

I then went to the Lord and asked what am I to do with my homeless situation.  God said,”I was to humble myself and reconcile things with my sister.  I then went to her house and knocked on her door and she hugged me so hard because she thought I had gone back to drinking.  We finally became reconciled that day.  Later that day I told God, “I need to sell my stereo, so I can relocate from my home town and get a new life started.”  Within one hour a friend called and asked; “if I was still interested in selling my stereo.”  I sold it to Him that day.

Ever since that day I have been talking to God.   There are times I do the talking and there are times He begins talking to me about my life.  There are also times that I have even had a passing thought on something and I would share these with God.  If I needed something, it would show up.  I figured out later on that God knew and heard my thoughts and prayers.  God let me know that He wanted to bless me.

Why did God answer those five thoughts or prayer requests I had on my mind that night?  To thwart the devil!  He knew the devil would come in and try to steal that experience from me.  The devil loves to whisper,” it was only a dream, it was not real.”  I know that, because He tried over and over again but every time, I remember how I asked those 5 things and God responded, in a very real way.
Persistence
Learning to communicate like I have learned to do takes persistence and time.  During my first six months as a new believer I began seeing consequences in my life as I talked to him, but I never heard His voice. I saw results as if I was watching the wind.  Although I cannot see the wind, I can certainly see the results from the wind, like the leaves of a tree blowing or grass moving. It was like that at first and at times still is.  Now years later, after learning how to quiet myself and listen, I can often hear God, but even now it is not all the time.  However, it is most of the time.  There are times when I might be working and not even thinking of God, and then He begins to talk or show me something I might have mentioned earlier in our times together.
Have you ever seen the movie: “The Matrix?”  When Neo or one of the other members of the team went into the real world and they had to learn something, the man on the sub would load a program and they would learn it instantly.  In one example the female character needed to learn how to fly a helicopter, so they downloaded it to her and she knew how to fly it immediately.  The reason I shared this is because this is how God sometime downloads information from His Word to me.  There are times I feel that I just received a download and now understand things from scripture I never knew or understood before. Jesus let us know that the Holy Spirit would be our teacher.  I am convinced that sometimes He downloads these cool revelations to me. It is really fun, and I highly recommend that you too plug into God.

 Our Daily Bread

God taught the Israelites, who just started out with him in the desert, an important lesson;  

They were to gather manna once a day and only for that day except for the Sabbath.  They were not to collect a weeks worth, or a months worth because it would spoil.  God wants us to learn that we need to come to him for a fresh provision every day.  So many Christians think they can go collect their manna and their other spiritual needs only on Sunday, instead of meeting with God daily.

I have heard so many say on Sunday; I need to go to church to recharge for another hard week.  You do not need to recharge if you stay plugged in all week.  Then they wonder why their life is spoiled and rotten and nothing seems to flow right in their week.  If your life moves like a rusted joint, then oil it every day.  When Jesus taught us to pray He said we are to ask for our daily bread not our weekly bread!

Intimacy with God is not going to happen with a quick cup of coffee and a donut as you rush off to work or drop off the kids at school, and then think you’re going to get your prayer time in as you fight traffic.  I know what you’re thinking, I am so busy!  Jesus was busy too!  Jesus taught, preached and healed whole towns full of sick and demon possessed people and in addition fed the masses.  He also walked everywhere He went, but every morning, He got up and spent time with God before “every man wanted to see Him”

The Prayer Closet

Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
This is one of the misunderstood verses in the Bible.  I have seen and heard about Christians building a closet or going in to a closet to pray. There is not a thing wrong with this, if that is the only way to get alone with God.  But this was not the point Jesus was driving home.
He was doing a comparison to a man who wants to be intimate with His wife.  He was pointing out when a man wants to make love to his wife, he does not do it in public.  He does not make a public showing out of it!  He takes her into the closet (in the greek “bedchamber”) and has intimacy with her.
God wants us to know if we really want to have intimacy with Him we need to treat our prayer time the same as the example above and not pray in public.  People often pray in public to get people’s approval or for others to see their great spirituality.  Instead, our prayer time this should be when we desire and need intimacy with God.
You might think I am contradicting myself from earlier statements.  However, let us do what Jesus did.  We can learn this by looking at an example from marriage.  When I want the most intimacy with my wife, we go and be alone, but it does not end there.  Do I only speak to my wife in the bedroom?  No, we interact all day.  The same concept should apply with God.  If we want a deep intimate relationship with God, we need to steal away time and shut off the television and stereo, even worship music at times.  Get away from everyone and everything, be quiet and still.  Then we can open up that spiritual channel to only hear God.
I once heard that God is like a radio station that broadcasts 24 hours a day, but if you never tune into that station, you will never hear him.

 

Intimacy, How To Draw Near To God Part III

In my last article I showed you that God is real and He can and wants to be intimate in your life, just as He has done in mine.  I share this verse from the Book of James:

James 4:7-8;  Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

This takes away the notion or any religious idea that God expects us only to be His subjective servants.  Rather, He desires to draw us into an intimate relationship with Himself.  But like I said; “the first move has to be ours.”  We and only we determine how close of a relationship we have with God.  So in this article I want to remove religious trappings and notions that hinder our relationship with God.

God is a Person

God is a person, a real living person.  He is not “the force be with you” or some substance that is floating around out there, somewhere in the universe.  He is a real living being!  I want you to remember and take note of this: We are created in the image of God!  We are the off-springs of God.  This is important because the wonderful attributes that are in us, are from Him.

The ability to love, to communicate, our desire to have and be in a family, all the good that is in man is from God.  Unfortunately, the overwhelming evil we possess is from our fallen nature.  I point this out because we are created in His image – not vice-versa!  We do not make God conform to our image!   When we attempt this, we try to mold Him into our fallen nature. (Exodus 32)

My goal for this article is to take away all the religious trappings and make God’s reality so familiar and understandable that anyone can apply this to their life.

Once again God is a person!  I repeat this so we can move to our first step!  His name is not God, that is His title, such as Mr. President.  If you met Barack Obama, you would not say good-morning Barack, you would say good-morning Mr. President.

My point is, and this is not trivial: in relationships there is always an introduction, either from yourself or from another person.  The first thing you do is learn the name of your new acquaintance.  So if you have never been introduced to God, let me have the pleasure in doing so… Yahweh or Jehovah (if you desire); this is my reader.  Yahweh or Jehovah is God’s proper name.  It is more personal and intimate than saying good morning Mr. God.  Try saying it; good morning Jehovah, it is nice to meet you.

God takes this even further.  God understands who we are and He knows our limitations.  The first time we meet God can be very intimidating and overwhelming, Jehovah knows that.  Therefore, He has supplied a solution to this intimidating introduction.  When God first introduced Himself to Israel at Mount Sinai, that first introduction did not go so well.  Israel could not deal with the over-whelming presence of Him.  So God supplied us a solution so we would not freak out when He appeared:

Jesus

His name is Jesus, Emanuel (God with us).  God became a real breathing living man!  In that human body dwelled Jehovah, Yahweh, our God.  When we watch Jesus throughout the gospels, He manifests two magnificent and wonderful things: First: He is “Son of God” as I described above.  (Do not get stuck on son, He is God)  When we read the gospels we can see God in action.  His likes and His dislikes.  What He does and how He deals with various issues, His attitudes towards life.

Do you want to clear up your confusion and have an understandable way to decide what your doctrine should be?  Simply read and do what Jesus said and did!  He is Jehovah.  Jesus would not do anything outside His nature.  Just following Jesus would clear up most if not all denominational differences.  In addition we would then know how to be perfect ambassadors to the nations.  What did Jesus say and how did He handle issues on Earth?  Various issues such as :

  • Sin and the world
  • Healing and sickness
  • Holy Spirit and baptisms
  • Cultural issues

We need to learn what Jesus did and said about every issue and make that our mission and purpose.  We as the body of believers would be a lot further ahead in leading people to Christ if we followed Jesus and His teachings.  This leads me to the next attribute of Jesus.

Second He is the “Son of Man,” He not only mirrored what God looks like but He also shows us what we, as Spirit-filled people of God should look like.  Too many people write off what Jesus did because He was God, but I believe, and scripture shows that every miracle He did, He did as a man.  He never used His own deity for the miracles.  He did what His Father told Him to do and then relied on the power of the Holy Spirit to fulfill all the miracles he preformed.

This is all important; because if we want to get close to God, we have to see Him for who He is really is, not what the religious legalists portray Him to be.  If you are involved in sexual sins and tend toward the wild side, read about how he dealt with the woman caught in adultery (John 8).  If you have a business and are struggling with business integrity or at times feel low or down and out, then read about Matthew, his disciple (Matt. 9) and Zacchaeus (Luke 19).  If you feel like an outcast and feel as though you do not fit in, read about the woman at the well (John 4).  If you tend toward legalism and find yourself at times prideful because of your righteousness, read how Jesus dealt with those that demonstrated religious pride, the Pharisees and Saducees.  They thought of themselves as special because of their positions and their education with regards to religious affairs.  Jesus spoke of these people, the Pharisees and Saducees throughout the Gospels.

As a side note, you will find that these last two groups, the Pharisees and the Saducees, were the only people that Jesus did not shower with Mercy and Compassion.  Jesus never condemned others because of their sexual lifestyle, corruption, divorces and or failures, but Jesus dealt with these religious people differently.

I say all this because no matter what situation you find yourself, good or bad you can always come to Jesus as you are.  Nicodemus, the Pharisee came to Jesus seeking truth and found expectance in His presence.  The woman caught in adultery most likely was dragged into the town circle naked or maybe with a blanket on her, however she also found acceptance with Jesus.  She was never told by Jesus to go get dressed and cleaned up before I help you.  Jesus probably looked at her lying there and reached out his hand and said; “who is here to condemn you”?  No one and NEITHER DO I?  GO AND SIN NO MORE!  

So what is your excuse for not coming into His wonderful and loving presence?

Time

With regards to relationships there are two parts to time, one being the time spent to get to know someone, the second covered later, is the actual time spent with someone after you get to know them.  It is very hard to get to know someone if you never have time to be with that person.  God is no different and in His case, it is even more difficult because you can’t see or hear him very well at first!

When we first meet a new person, what draws us to that person?  It is usually because they are attractive or they have a great personality.  Jehovah has both, but it take awhile to develop your spiritual senses.  If you are not familiar with this, you have five human senses but you also have five spiritual senses.  But unlike your natural ones, your spiritual senses have to be developed.  I used this verse in the last article:

Matthew 13:15  For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
If you read this you will understand that the people of Israel were hearing and seeing all that Jesus said and did, however, Jesus said they were dull of hearing and their eyes were shut.  What was He talking about?  He was referring to their spiritual ears and eyes.  How could the Pharisees see and hear Jesus raising a man who has been dead for three days and not get it?  Then they watch Him feed the multitude with a few loaves of bread and some fish and also calm storms.  But they still did not get it, this is because they were deaf and blind spiritually. (Matt. 23:16-23)  So not to be like them and the unbelievers, we need to take time and develop our spiritual awareness to His presence.  Then we need to be able to recognize the difference between His voice and the voice of Satan the deceiver.
The second part to time is “time in itself,”  this demonstrates how much importance you place in that person.  Imagine if all the intimacy in your marriage was a quick kiss out the door in the morning with a cup of coffee in your hand and then a quick dinner after work while you watch your favorite television program.  If this was the most interaction you had, you would not demonstrate that you placed much importance in the person.  Then to follow that off, imagine that the only time for real intimacy was an hour or so on Sunday morning?  But you say we had to cut it short or rush because we wanted to get to the lunch buffet before the crowd or your favorite team was playing that day?
The above scenarios describe many Christians and their “intimate time with God”.  Once a week and a quick hello God and “help me make everything go my way today prayer” as we fly out the door or sit in traffic.  You cannot have quality time in the car with God watching for traffic and dropping off the kids at school.  This does not create intimacy and depth in your relationship with God.
Simply put, if it would not work with a physical human relationship it will not work in the spiritual realm which requires even more effort and stillness.  Your spouse, your children and your friends need your quality time and attention.  Like I have shared before, Jehovah is no different.  Remember He is a jealous God and He refuses to share you with your idols, sins or your busy lifestyles. 
Remember if you draw near, He will draw near!  
In Christianity we call this alone time “Prayer and Meditation”, this will be covered next week.
If you need salvation or are not sure if you are, please press this link to :  How Do I Receive Eternal Life?
Written by Dennis Stauffer
Edited by Gary Green (Omega House)

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God Bless

Dennis Stauffer  (Founder/President and writer of DSI Ministries/Hands In Action)

Gary Green (Editor for DSI Ministries)