Do you wonder… Why did Jesus die on the cross? The simple answer is, He died for you! You are the reason Jesus endured the agony of the cross. He died because He loves you and He wants to spend eternity with you. So, focus your eyes on Jesus and trust in Him. He has already done the hard part. All we have to do is believe. If you still have questions about what it means to accept Jesus as your Savior, click on the picture below and it will take you to a page that will get you started. Blessings to you!
I fully intended to write a lighthearted blog post this week about the carefree days of summer. All of the fun activities we look forward to all winter long while we’re stuck inside, swimming, hiking, boating, grilling. But Jesus just wouldn’t let me do it. The longer I tried to write that post, the more He pulled at my heart. When I started this blog a few years ago, I worried that I wouldn’t know what to say or that my words wouldn’t be good enough. I compared my writing to all of those other blogs out there whose writers have beautiful, flowery words that I don’t have. I spent a lot of time praying about how I should approach writing this blog and God’s answer was very clear to me. He said, “You don’t need flowery words, you need honesty.” His words set me free and I began writing with a new found confidence. I will always write the truth about God’s word even when honesty is hard. His truth isn’t carefree, it’s straightforward and in your face. We all have times when we don’t want to hear the truth because it holds a mirror up to us that isn’t always pretty. But the truth is what we need to hear and it is what God has asked me to write. So with that, I mind, I yield to His plan for this blog post.
The Parable of the Fig Tree
People often ask, ”Why did Jesus teach in parables”? And the answer is simply this, we can all relate to these parables. After two thousand years, the meaning is still the same. No matter where we come from or what stage in life we are in, the story is something we can all understand.
Jesus Christ is coming back! And the Parable of the Fig Tree is a call to all Christians to be ready when He does. Just like we would prepare ourselves for a summer vacation by booking a flight and packing our bags, there are things we can do to prepare for the second coming of Jesus:
#1 Recognize the Signs.
Now learn the parable of the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near—at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
When we see the leaves budding on the trees and the flowers blooming, we know that summer is just around the corner. If we are familiar with Scripture and know what to look for, we will recognize the signs that Jesus is just around the corner too. We should be immersing ourselves in God’s word every day. And when we do that, the signs that the coming of Jesus is near should be as plain to us as the coming of summer.
Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would watched and not allowed his house to be broken into.
We should always have an eager expectation that Jesus could come back at any moment. And that expectation should be reflected in our lives. If we knew that someone was getting ready to break into our house and take everything we have worked so hard for, we wouldn’t just go to bed and pretend that the thief wasn’t coming. We would be sitting up all night waiting, ready to catch him in the act. This is the kind of eager expectation we should feel for the second coming of Jesus. We should be sitting up waiting for Him to come through the door like a thief in the night. It’s easy to become complacent and forget that He is coming soon. We get caught up in other things that seem so important at the time. But we can take this time to refocus and start watching for Him to come back because it could happen at any moment. While we’re watching and waiting for Jesus, we should be telling other people about Him, so that they could be saved too.
#3 Be Ready.
Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
We don’t know when Jesus is coming back. It could be today, or it could be years from now. It doesn’t matter when it happens, just that we are ready for Him when He comes. What will He see when He gets here? Will He be pleased by how we are living our lives? Are there things that we need to change to make our lives acceptable to Him? These are the questions that I am asking myself today.Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Matthew 24:44 #Summer #BibleStudyClick To Tweet
This blog post is about my heart and mind as much as it’s about yours. Today God hit me with a hard truth. Am I ready to see Jesus coming? What do I need to change in my life? I know that I need to be better prepared… to understand the Bible fully, to be ready to answer any question about my faith and to be watchful of His return. I pray that you will take the time to become prepared for Jesus to come back and that God will bless you greatly for it. Be well friends, and God bless you!
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Have you ever gone on a walk with ankle weights on? Do you remember the relief of taking them off when the walk was over? The burden of sin weights us down just like those ankle weights. And sin separates us from God keeps us from doing all that He has for us. In this Bible verse from Hebrews 12:1, the Apostle Paul tells us that we can set down the weight of our sin. Then and only then will we be able to run the race of the Christian life. So, drop the weight of your sin at the Savior’s feet and run fast friends. Keep your eyes on Jesus!
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The day wasn’t turning out the way I had planned. My to-do list was getting longer not shorter. I felt stressed and overwhelmed. Then, a dear friend sent me a random text in the middle of the day. She asked me to read Habakkuk 3. I immediately sent her a text back and said “OK”, with a smiley face emoji. But I had no intention of reading it, at least not right then. Maybe later when everything else was done. I was right in the middle of a project and I wanted to get it finished.
But God pulled on my heart strings and whispered, “You need to read it”.
I answered, “Okay, I’ll read it later tonight when things calm down”.
God whispered to my heart again, “You need to read it now”.
I sighed as I resigned myself to God’s plan for the day, grabbed my Bible and started to read…
Though the fig tree may not blossom,
Nor fruit be on the vines:
Though the labor of the olive may fail’
And the fields yield no food;
Though the flock may be cut off from the fold,
And there be no herd in the stalls-
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength;
He will make my feet like deer’s feet,
And He will make me walk on my high hills.
Wow! I felt like I had been struck by lightning! All of these years later, Habakkuk can still cut straight to the point. It’s easy to praise God and find joy in our salvation when things are going great in our lives. It’s so much harder when life isn’t going our way. But no matter what situation we are in, God knows what we need even when we don’t.
Habakkuk knew that his people would soon face hard times. They were going to be without the basic necessities they needed to survive. There would be no food and no water to sustain them. But Habakkuk had confidence that if they put their trust in God, He would see them through.
If Habakkuk could find joy in God under such dire circumstances, then surely I can too. There’s an old saying that we all know, “Into every life a little rain must fall”. Well, when it feels like it’s pouring outside, instead of feeling defeated I’m going to praise God. He is the one who gives me strength to get through the difficult times. So this is my promise to Him for all that He has done for me.
Even though the bills are piling up, and it seems that there will never be enough money to pay them all…
I will praise You!
Even though my house is filthy, company’s coming over and there’s not enough time to clean…
I will praise You!
Even though my health may be failing and I feel weak…
I will praise You!
Even though I’ve lost a loved one and my heart is broken…
I will praise You!
I’m so grateful that I have a friend who would point me to God during difficult times. Even though there’s no way she could’ve known what was going on in my life that day or that I needed these words spoken into my heart, she followed God’s lead and sent me the text. But God did knew everything that was happening. And He used a seemingly random text to take away all of the stress and overwhelm I felt that day. He replaced it with a song in my heart and praise on my lips. God is good! And He is worthy of our praise! So, that’s how a random text taught me to praise God! I pray that it will do the same for you!
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May God bless you greatly!