ALL

As a child I remember hearing my mother say, “If you pick up ALL your toys before we go to the store, we can stop for ice cream.  Of course I was excited and wanted to do that. When she entered the room and pointed out a couple toys that I missed, I was anxious to quickly put them away. I couldn’t fool mother and we can’t fool God. Unlike mother, God is Omniscient, meaning He knows everything. He is Omnipresent, everywhere at once, and He is Omnipotent, all powerful with unlimited authority. Omni is a Latin prefix meaning ALL. The Lord should be easier to follow than our earthly parents; still we tend to resist Him more, even though He has ALL of our best interests at heart.

 

Although God knows everything about us including our hearts attitudes towards Him, He is respectful and doesn’t push His way into our lives. He has designed us to have a free will, a mind to go our own way if we choose to do so. Even though He could be in All of our hearts, He won’t come in and dwell there unless we ask Him to. Revelation 3:20 gives us a clear indication of that, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in and dine with Him and He with me.”  There are several drawings picturing Jesus on the outside of a home knocking on a door. It gives us a clear illustration of God knocking on the heart doors of our lives. Every picture omits the door handle and door-knob. That’s because Jesus doesn’t barge into our lives, he is graciously asking us to let Him in. John 1: 10-12, “He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came unto His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the power to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.” Once again, He made the offer; it’s up to us to accept or reject His generous offer.         

 

In the Strong’s Concordance several pages and columns list the word ALL in the Bible, they appear over 5,000 times. Many of them start a sentence using the word ALL. Some of them include the promises from God. Some point to our indifference to God while others refer to judgments that occurred to those that lived throughout many periods of time.

 

Of course we can’t study ALL of the verses, so lets begin with how God looks at ALL  of us, not just a few.  Isaiah 53:6 starts out with “ALL we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us ALL. That verse starts with ALL and ends with ALL. The Lord is God in the verse and He laid on Him (Jesus Christ the iniquity, or sins, of us ALL). Romans 3:23, “But ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”  There is no wiggle room here; ALL means every one of us. That puts us at odds, without our having a healthy relationship with God and His Son Jesus Christ. Still there is hope. Romans 6:23 explains, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”   

 

Once we have recognized we have a need and can’t save ourselves, and we are open to His work and plan in our hearts a whole new world will open up to us. We can begin to understand the relevancy of Gods Word today in our every day lives.  2 Timothy 3:16 shows us that, “ALL Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”  There is a lot to be said about each part of that verse, most is clear to understand. What might not be so understandable is how the verse starts out. “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God.” Inspired is God breathed; an earthly example is like a sailboat that is guided by the wind. God used over 40 different authors over a span of 1,400 years to bring us His written word. Each one had their own personality and occupation still they blend together and all compliment each other. Peter was a fisherman while Luke was a doctor. Ruth might have been poor while Solomon was wealthy, still each contributed greatly to the writing of Gods word.       

 

Even though various writers were used, much of what was written by them wasn’t understood at the time. Some writings are prophetic and haven’t taken place even in our lifetime. Examples of that is the book of Revelation written by John on the Island of Patmos. It tells us much about Heaven and what will take place after Christ returns to the earth and takes His believers with Him. That is what is called the Second Coming. Many of the Jewish people were looking for a King. They wanted someone to rescue them from the bondage of the Roman Empire.  Yes, someday He will come back as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, but in order to accept him as your King; you first have to meet Him as your Savior. One cannot have one without the other.  

 

Another prophetic passage that has been fulfilled is Isaiah 9:6, “For unto us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” That was prophesied around 740 B.C. over 700 years before Christ death burial and resurrection as written about in Matthew 26- 28. Here Isaiah was led to write things that would not take place in his lifetime.

 

Getting back to our word ALL. Regardless of cultural differences and a different period of time, God tells us in Psalm 100:5, “For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endureth to ALL generations.”  There are times we may suffer some in this lifetime, but in James 1:2 we are told,” Count it ALL joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete lacking nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to ALL liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”  Life is a process that at times can be discouraging. We do however have a Savior who can guide us and help us make the right decisions with everything we might face in life.

 

Gateway Baptist is here to answer any questions you might have about the Bible. We can also show you how it has answers for any struggles you might be going through. We would love to have you visit us. Lets get to know each other and  together we can follow Gods plan for each of our lives.   



God is Good

We know God is love, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16. But God commendeth (demonstrated) His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”  Romans 5:8. Yes, He loves us, but what about His being good? “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Fathers GOOD PLEASURE to give you the Kingdom.” Luke 12:32.

 

Ever since God created the heaven and the earth, He made comments about it being good. Starting with the first book of the Bible, Genesis mentions the things He had made and He said they were good. In verse 31, the conclusion of chapter one, “and God saw everything that He had made, and behold it was very good (abundantly excellent). In that chapter He made man and woman and considered us very good. So if God is good, why do bad things happen to good people? That’s a legitimate question. Looking at our lives through Gods perspective, He sees from the beginning to the end. We can only see the here and now. Most of Gods plan for our lives can’t be seen and experienced at the beginning of a trial.  We can understand more clearly when a trial is ended; sometimes we won’t know the reason until we get to heaven.

 

There are numerous examples all through out the Bible and many just with Joseph. At the time several events in his life didn’t seem to make sense to him. For the sake of time and space, let’s focus mainly on Joseph and his father Jacob. We know his brothers threw him in a pit to die without water. They stole his coat of many colors dipped it in blood and showed it to their father. Jacob thought his son had died, tore his clothes, dressed in sackcloth, and mourned for several days.  He was lied to and felt nothing good could come out of this bad situation. Genesis 37:31-34.

 

In the meantime Joseph overheard his brother’s talk of killing him, they changed their minds when they saw some Ishmaelite with camels on their way to Egypt. Rather than plotting to kill Joseph, they felt they could make a few dollars by selling him so they did for twenty pieces of silver.  Joseph had no idea what would happen to him next, but God knowing the future made sure he ended up in Potiphar’s house. He was Pharaoh’s officer and captain of the guard. A lot more events happened and he was falsely accused. What is important is Genesis 39:2 says, “And the Lord was with Joseph.” It’s repeated again in verse 21. So all during this time God knew how He was going to use Joseph, but this young man didn’t have a clue.

 

Time went by and Joseph, now 30 years old, was thrown into a dungeon. He was falsely accused for something he didn’t do. He had to be thinking, first a pit, now a dungeon, and all I’m trying to do is serve the Lord. Not only was he left to die once again, he was also forgotten. That had to hurt, what we would call today, his self esteem. It wasn’t until the Chief Butler and the Chief Baker had a dream and his saying in Genesis 40:8, “Do not interpretations belong to God?” It was a pivotal point that Joseph was now beginning to see how he could be used. In Genesis 40:14, after interpreting their dreams, that Joseph asked, “But think on me when it shall be well with thee, and show kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me to Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house.”     

 

Then two years later Pharaoh had a dream and none of all the magicians of Egypt nor all the wise men could interpret it.  “Then spoke the Chief Butler unto Pharaoh, saying, I do remember my faults this day.”, recorded in Genesis 41:8 and 9. He then began to tell his dream and how Joseph was able to interpret it. Pharaoh being anxious in verse 14 did the following, “Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him hastily out of the dungeon.”  So Joseph was forgotten for two years then all of a sudden God used him. The very fist thing that he told Pharaoh is found in verse 16, “And Joseph answered Pharaoh, saying, it is not in me; God shall give Pharaoh an answer of peace.” So God got the Glory and credit for the interpretation of Pharaoh’s dream. 

 

Since Joseph didn’t waver, and in every situation most of us would be discouraged about, God elevated him to be Pharaoh’s right hand man and in Genesis 41:48 and 49, “He gathered up all the food of the seven years, which were in the land of Egypt, and laid up the food in the cities:  the food of the field, which was round about every city, laid he up in the same. And Joseph gathered grain as the sand of the sea, very much, until he ceased numbering; for it was without number.”

 

My observation in reading about Joseph is that no matter what roadblocks were put in front of him, he kept faithful to God and made the best of every situation. His desire was to be used of God and he was used in ways that were humanly unimaginable. He couldn’t see the future, but trusted the Lord in all circumstances. He worked hard and helped those that believed totally different from him. His integrity and testimony was event in all that he did, so much so that Pharaoh couldn’t praise him enough as found in Genesis 41:38-44. In verse 38, “And Pharaoh said unto his servants, Can we find such an one as this is, a man in whom the Spirit of God is?’  As a result, he not only was prepared and gathered the needed food supply to get the whole region though the famine, but he was able to help his own family as well.   

 

There is so much more to tell, but I want us to understand the test Joseph’s father Jacob and he were facing. Benjamin, Joseph’s youngest brother was born in the meantime. Naturally Joseph wanted to see him. He told his brothers when they came back for grain again to bring Benjamin. His father thinking Joseph was dead and feared what would happen to Benjamin was reluctant to do so, but by faith conceded to let him go. He wanted his family to stay united and Joseph wanted the same. Neither of them knew God’s overall plan, they just had to trust God for the results and recognize He had their best interest at heart.

 

Recently our church was flooded. Folks from all over came to help us out. Not everyone looks at the Bible the same way we do never the less they were there to assist us and in so doing we established a relationship that would not have happened if this tragedy had not occurred. We worked well together and were taught some valuable lessons. God is still on the throne and knows exactly what He is doing. Our faith will be broadened because of what we are going through. It will be interesting to watch how God brings all the pieces of this puzzle together and how the physical as well as the financial needs will be met. His goal as well as ours should be how He will get the greatest honor and glory in the process and how our church will become stronger and more outreaching in the future.

 

In the book of Proverbs 3:5 and 6 we are told to “Trust in the Lord with ALL thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He will direct thy paths.” We are given several promises. Our goal should be to try and maintain an attitude like Joseph did, give God the glory and in everything be thankful as stated in 1 Thessalonians 4:18, “In everything give thanks for this is the will of God concerning you.” Then we can have the hope that Romans 8:28 will be played out in our lives, “And we know that ALL things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”

 

We will keep you informed as to the progress of Gateway Baptist Church, what is going on with the property and where we will be meeting from week to week. We would love for you to visit us and realize our hope and strength comes from the Lord Himself. He’s still in charge of our lives and He can be for you as well.

Jim Yerkes



Meeting a King

Prior to the funeral for my mother in March 2005 in Seminole, Florida, I left North Carolina to meet my sister from Alabama at Kinko’s. The purpose was to duplicate pictures of her 89 years with us. While there, we met a lady that could hardly contain herself. Although we were complete strangers, she felt compelled to tell us the story of what happened to her the day before.

 

She got on an elevator with a friend and was wearing a sweatshirt with a picture of a Leopard on it. A man asked her if she had bought the sweatshirt in Seminole or in another country. She said in Florida. He then politely said where I come from you can see many Leopards. He offered to give her the royal treatment if she visited his country. He told her to tell anyone she meets to tell them that Ron invited her. He wanted to make sure she wrote the name of his country correctly, so she took out a pen and wrote BIFFECHE. He asked her to pull the name up on the internet when she got home.

 

My sister and I had to write it down and find out for ourselves. That led us to a site under The King and Aristocracy of Biffeche, and then sure enough there was a picture of Ron wearing a Kings crown. What really touched my heart was reading what they believe. You need to click on the Epic Song of Biffeche. It starts out like what you were probably taught in Sundayschool; “In the garden, Adam had no troubles, Adam had a wife named Eve. Everyone knows the snake told the secrets to Eve.” From there on the story is very different. They believe the snake has all the power as well as the Great white Leopard.

 

It is my prayer that someone reading this will be lead to that country and share with them the truth. If the Kings life is changed, then his whole country could be open to Gods Word. There is another reason why I’m writing this article. Let’s suppose this fellow Ron told the lady he was a King, what kind of reaction would she have had? What if he wore his crown in the elevator? Would have anyone believed him?

 

After hearing that story, I began to understand what it must have been like for Jesus walking here on this earth and why He spoke in parables. For those that were receptive to what He had to say, He made sure they understood more, and many believed. For those that tried to suppress the truth, He didn’t force Himself on them. Some did believe, but others wanted to stone Him.

 

Christ came to earth as God in the flesh for the purpose to die for our sins. He’s also a living Savior that reigns in the hearts of those that have put their trust in Him. Due to the hardship the Jews were facing, they were looking for a King to free them, and that’s understandable. Someday, I’m looking for the Kings return, but unless we accept Him as our Savior first, He cannot be our King. Hebrews 9:27 says; “It’s appointed unto man once to die and after that the judgment.”  Our home on earth is important, but someday it will be left behind. What is most important is our eternal home. We would love to have you visit us at Gateway Baptist. Why not give us a try?

Jim Yerkes

 

Extra references: John 1:11&12, 8:31 &32, 10:25-30, 12:44-50, 14:1-6



Overcoming Fear

 

While serving in Viet Nam, we had to face the enemy on more than one occasion. One particular time we came upon a large group of Viet Cong and amidst the incoming fire we couldn’t seem to flush out a machine gun aimed in our direction. We found a fairly secure position in a hollowed out trench, keep as low as we could, and since we called in airstrikes north of us, felt in a matter of time we would overcome our enemy.  The battle lasted two days, some of the airstrikes helped and we could tell damage to their side was high because we overcame much of their fire power. Still one particular machine gun was too close to us and several of our lives could have been lost if an airstrike was permitted to come any closer.  

 

Thinking in a matter of time he would run out of ammunition or someone would apprehend him; I kept busy with my radio communication that I was trained to do. Part of my responsibilities was to inform others higher in command as to our situation. In turn they would assess the information and develop a strategy that would hopefully place us in a better position to conquer the enemy as well as minimizes our causalities.  I wouldn’t call that being in a comfort zone exactly, but it was better than what I was about to be asked to do next.

 

The Captain said to me, “Jim we have quite a few causalities of our own, and many of our wounded need to be evacuated to where they can get medical attention. I want you to crawl up closer to the front, find them, and get them to follow you back. We are then going to call in a Huey (Helicopter).  He will land behind us and fly the wounded out.”

 

Soldiers are trained to follow orders regardless of the risk to their own lives, so without thinking twice, I obeyed. He didn’t have to tell me to crawl; I was hugging dirt the whole way.  At times I went trough thick brush which shook and drew attention to my movement. When that happened short blasts of machine gun fire went over my head. I waited a few moments and then proceeded with my crawl. The enemy was hunkered down as well and apparently couldn’t get the proper angle on his weapon to take me out. Was I in God’s hands?  The answer is clearly yes or I wouldn’t be writing this article today. Was I where I should be at that point in my spiritual life? The answer was clearly no.  I had placed too much faith in our abilities, the strength of our soldiers, and superior weapons we had. Of course I prayed and trusted God, but He was just one of the tools I thought of at the time.  

 

We finally conquered our enemy, the wounded were evacuated, the machine gunners were captured and taken prisoner and I was able to take home a Viet Cong flag.  To all of our surprise there were two of them hidden very well, one girl and one boy that didn’t look to be more than around 14 years old.  Our enemy was using whatever they had in the way of weapons and using children in warfare.  While thinking back on this I couldn’t help but think of my granddaughter Kyleigh today; who is now 18 and will be well trained to carry out her duties as a Military Doctor. She has excelled in basic training, medical training at Fort Sam Houston, will be in ROTC and four years of college at Furman University in South Carolina. After graduation she will attend another four years learning medicine and medical training and then become a resident Doctor at a VA hospital for another two years before becoming a surgeon of her own. So a lot of time effort and training are put into our American soldiers to carry out special tasks.

 

So is training and education is all that’s needed?   What about technology?  On January 24th, 2010, sixteen old Abby Sunderland of Thousand Oaks California set off for a solo sail around the world; she wanted to be the first of her age to master the trip. After leaving Marina Del Rey, California, she got as far as the open sea between Australia and Africa. She was experiencing extreme adverse weather conditions. Her rigging was down, and the engine was giving her trouble, still she remained upright. She lost satellite phone contact with her family and set off emergency beacons, triggering a recue effort by theUnited States, Australian and French authorities. The Australian Search and Recue team came to her rescue. We are glad she was found to be ok and that the GPS technology devises were able to pin point her exact location. I’m sure much prayer was going up for her from family, friends, and perhaps hundreds around the world. I’m all for being prepared when facing adverse conditions, but if we didn’t have the resources we’ve been discussing and our only defense was the Lord Himself, would our reliance on Him be totally different?   

 

A couple of months ago my wife and I decided to tent camp on a well known lake in Nebraska. It was within 300 yards of the beach in a somewhat secluded area under some shade trees. It was also 100 yards or less away from a public restroom and near the entrance where one checks in. We didn’t think about it at the time, but when it became dark the workers at the entrance left for the day. There was no gate, surveillance cameras or other devices that could assess the coming and going of vehicles.  On one hand many of us like our freedom while at the same time want to feel protected from anyone that might want to harm us. At the very least a Park Ranger roaming the area could deter some trouble or let a perpetrator be aware that they are in the area, but they weren’t around.

 

At 12:30 A.M. I needed to use the restroom and proceeded to walk to it carrying only my flashlight. According to the Park rules it is supposed to be quiet after 10 P.M.  On my way to the site a large pick-up truck, raised high, with oversize tires circled the entrance booth and sped down a dirt road to the other side of the inlet, probably a quarter mile away. At the time I thought he was just another camper. After returning, I decided to check my cell phone for messages, which had been placed in my locked car; that took less than three minutes. It was dark, but one could see my dome light a quarter mile away. When finished I went back to bed, my wife was already asleep.

 

It was a little after One A.M., when our nightmare began. All of a sudden we heard the roaring of a truck going at great speeds coming towards us across the sandy beach. At first I thought he would just pass by. Instead he stopped within a few feet of our tent and shined his bright lights directly on us. Music was blasted high, but we heard voices from a couple more people. Our car doors were tried, but they were locked. We also heard sticks being broken. Many things went through our minds such as: “Do we get up and confront them? Our thoughts were no, they were looking for a fight.” ”Were they going to run us over?” Were they going to set the sticks they broke on fire, throw gasoline on us and burn us out?  Perhaps they were on drugs, were running out of money and thought we would be an easy prey. Thinking all of these thoughts plus the fact that with the headlights, they could see us, but our eyes couldn’t adjust fast enough to see them. We were clearly at their mercy; our only logical choice was to trust the Lord and Him completely; so that’s what we chose to do.

 

Of course we prayed, but this time it was totally different. It wasn’t a simple prayer to plead with God to have them leave us alone. We used Scripture and recognized our warfare was really from the spiritual realm. The first thing I wanted to make sure of was that there was not any unconfessed sin in my life. We both prayed silently and didn’t speak until the event was over with. I remembered Psalm 66:18, “If I regarded iniquity in my heart the Lord will not hear me.” I knew I belong to Christ, I trusted Him as my Lord and Savior many years ago. That relationship can’t be broken, but my fellowship with Him could be, so I wanted to make sure our relationship was where it needed to be. Next was to thank him for the many years He has allowed me to live and if there would be more gain in my death than life, He could choose to do with me as He wished. 1 Corinthians 6:20, “For ye are brought with a price; therefore, glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

 

There were other Scriptures, but one that stuck out in my mind in particular was Ephesians 6:12, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” It was if a light went on in my head. I realized this was a battle between good and evil and between the Lord and Satan or at the very least some of his helpers. So in my prayer I quoted Scripture and then asked God specific requests which I knew He could do, “Lord help them to be confused in what they are trying to do. Rather than move forward in their plan they retreat.” “Make one of them question the leader why they are doing this and in so doing leave us alone.” “Help them get distracted or interested in doing something else.” And other prayers like that. It not only brought us peace, but after 15 minutes they just drove off. At that time we were thankful and Praised God for His power and taking care of the problem.

 

So whatever you are facing or might yet face, let the Lord handle your battles. By leaving Him out of the picture we may have been taken to our Heavenly home. If you are not sure your faith is strong and you want to become more trusting of Christ or have never met Him personally, why not take the time to visit us at Gateway Baptist and let us show you what He can do for you.
Jim Yerkes



Idols?

When thinking of idols the first thing that comes to mind is the little statues natives worship in Africa, India, or some remote island, certainly not here in America. It might be surprising to know what a lot of people worship right here at home. Many foreign religions and new ways of thinking have been creeping in to the United States for sometime. Those that are reading this article are not likely the ones that are involved in those types of idols. So the real question is what are idols?  Can we come up with a clear definition of them?

 

According to 1 Corinthians 10:14 we are told, “Wherefore my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.”  In the following verse 15 it is written, “I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say.”  First and second Corinthians was written by the apostle Paul around A.D. 56 and 57. The letter was written to those living in Corinth and concerning Christian conduct, not for those outside the faith. That’s why he spoke to them as dearly beloved and he was warning them to stay pure and forsake idologrity. He also addressed them as wise men. He was encouraging them to forget their former life and lay a new foundation that was new to many of them. In 1 Corinthians 3:11 Paul told them “For other foundations can no man lay than which is laid, which is Christ Jesus.” From verse 12 – 23 he goes on to tell us we are wasting our time and lives if we choose to build a foundation based on gold, silver or precious stones. They represent temporal values and are something we can’t take with us. Put another way, if God is not in it, or placed in the center of our lives we are just wasting His time and our efforts.

 

So can we conclude that anything that stands before God and your relationship to Him is an idol?  Exodus 20:3 tells us, “Thou shall have no other gods before me.”  Other gods is not limited to things made by someone’s hands, but reaches wider and deeper. It’s really what we worship. In America it might be an obsession with Sports, from baseball to hunting. It could be our automobiles, our home, or a hobby that occupies hundreds of hours of our time. It could even be doing good things that boost our ego such as recognition in our community, our church or among our friends. Now I’m not saying anything that has been mentioned is all bad, but how much time do we devote to those various things and have very little time left over for the Lord himself? Without Him none of these things could even exist.

 

There was a time I remember having a TV in most every room in the house. Now, believe it or not, we don’t even own one. A few days ago a fellow knocked on our door and asked, “Have you ever given any thought to having a satellite dish on your home?” He was a salesman and had a good approach. He recognized that we were one of the few in the area that didn’t have a reception disk on our roof. My answer was, “Yes, I thought a lot about it, but can’t come up with a valid reason why we need one. You see we don’t have the time now to do the things we really want. All a TV would do for us is take time away from what we feel is really important. Quite frankly, we would rather spend more time reading and learning more about God in the Bible that watching a lot of things that most likely would have a negative effect on our lives.”  We like to wake up cheerful and eager to face the beautiful world that God has made for us each day.  I asked him to wait a minute and then went to get him a tract about the love of God. I said; “If you ever get to the point of discovering what I have to say makes any sense, give me a call, perhaps we can both function without a TV.” I hope I handled it well. He was a nice fellow that was just trying to make a living. Now I’m not telling you to give up your TV, but for the fun of it see if you can go one week without turning it on and at the end of that time ask yourself this question. Do I own the TV or does that TV own me?  You might be amazed to discover how many things seem to control our lives and in short stand between ourselves and God.

 

My wife and I just read a few Psalms one evening. One that stuck out to us was Psalms 16. It is tilted “The path of life and joy.” Verse one starts out, “Preserve me, O God; for in Thee do I put my trust.”  In verse four, “Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god.” The good news is found in verse eight and nine, “I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.” “Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth; my flesh also shall rest in hope.”  We all like the positive thoughts at the end, my heart is glad and my flesh shall rest in hope. Keep in mind that can be achieved if we take on the obligation to do the first part which is setting the Lord always before yourself and not hasten after much of what the world offers. You might be thinking that’s easier said than done, and that is true. We can’t do anything in our own strength; you will need God’s help. Surprisingly, He will if you just ask Him and then allow Him to take control of those areas in your life.

 

By setting your mind to place the Lord first, I believe you will discover new heights in your walk with Him.  You’ll get a clearer picture of what it is you are here for. You’ll become more giving rather than a taker. Keep in mind that a church cannot function without those that are generous givers. Many missionaries today are cutting way back and some are leaving the field because so many think their needs are more important than God’s work. Thoughts that have been convicting me are, “Have I got enough already? Is God in heaven keeping record of how much I’ve accumulated here on earth?  I believe He is more concerned in what I am doing for Him by sharing His love and holiness than what I’ve accomplished for myself.

 

C.T. Sudd was born in 1860 and died in 1931. He was a missionary in China, India, and Africa. He is the one that wrote these words, “Only one life will soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.” I’m sure he had very little material possessions, but what he has in Heaven will outshine anything this earth had to offer him. In conclusion, “Are you giving your best to the Savior who spared you from hell by dying on the cross for you and is offering you eternal life?” Should you surrender more so that Gods work may blossom and you’ll receive that everlasting peace that only He can bring?  What I’m writing speaks volumes to my own heart.  The closer I get to the end of the roadway of life,  I’m realizing more and more that I need to decrease so Christ can increase. If this makes sense to you, why not visit us at Gateway Baptist in Loveland and let’s explore together about this loving Savior and find what He has in mind for each of us.

Jim Yerkes