Trust

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord , thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV

Have you ever felt like you are all alone or maybe that the storm that your in will never be over? I know that I have felt that many times. This summer I quit my job where I’ve been working for the past 22 years. Over the years the founder had passed away and then things just went downhill from there. It got to the point, during the last couple of years, where it started being mentally and verbally abusive. Though there were times, when working there, where I felt like I would never escape the punishments I would keep coming back to God praying and trusting that someday things would get better. This past summer they did when my father-in-law came up and said to me that the company he works for had an open position and the pay would be right around what I was currently making at my old job. It was a blessing from God and the hope of a better future for myself and my family that I have been praying for. So when you feel like your stuck in a situation you’ll never get out of just keep praying and trusting God. Even if it takes 22 years or more know that God has your best interests in mind and He is watching out for you and He loves you. God Bless.

Check out this video of TobyMac’s “Move (Keep Walkin’)”

The message goes along with what was said here and it’s a catchy song.

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Halloween

Ever wonder what Halloween is really about or if as Christians we should even participate in it? With this month being October and Halloween coming around the corner I wanted to share what I’ve learned over the past couple of years about this. The websites where I read about Halloween history and October 31st celebrations for this post came from the History Channel Website and the CBN Website.

Around 2000 years ago in the area that is now known as Ireland, United Kingdom, and Northern France the Celtic would celebrate Samhain (lord of death), a festival which took place on the night of October 31st which is the eve before their new year. According to their mythology this night was when the boundary between the dead and the living would thin and the ghosts of the dead would roam the Earth. They believed that while here not only did the dead damage crops but their presence let the Druids, aka Celtic Priests, to predict the future. The Celtics would also dress up and disguise themselves in costumes so that the evil spirits would think that they are one of them. They would also have bonfires where they would make food and animal offerings to their gods. In the Bible God says:

There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord , and because of these abominations the Lord your God drives them out from before you.

Deuteronomy 18:10‭-‬12 NKJV

Now you might be saying to yourself “Well that was 2000 years ago and the celebrations have just become fun and games.” but that would be wrong. People today who follow and practice Wicca believe this night to be one of two most holy nights. It’s a time when they can celebrate with and worship demons and other evil entities from the spiritual realm. Though you may not be dancing around fires and chanting, by participating in events associated with what the Celtics and Wiccian believe you are in a sense celebrating with them.

You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s table and of the table of demons.

I Corinthians 10:21 NKJV

But since it is nearly impossible to avoid this day there is another alternative. Back in the 8th century Pope Gregory III tried to help Christians be able to avoid having to celebrate demons by moving All Saints Day from the spring to November 1st. In case you don’t know, because I never heard of it until researching for this blog, All Saints Day is a day to remember those who lived their life for Christ and God and have gone on to heaven. While this is a nice gesture it unfortunately has been tossed along the way side and I don’t think many take time to remember the saints let alone know that there is a day to honor them. I checked my calendar at home and it clearly marks Halloween but says nothing about All Saints Day, the only way I knew that is still on November 1st was by googling it. Celebrating and remembering past saints and what they accomplished and taught is something that we and our families could partake in on this night instead of dressing up in costumes. In the past my wife and I would take the kids to Chuck E Cheese or a place like that for a family night but I think that maybe instead we might start taking this time to celebrate the saints and worship our Lord and Savior. Maybe this is something that you can start this year with your family. God bless.

April Fool’s Day 2018

Every year April 1st is known as April Fool’s Day in many countries. A day when you play jokes, or have a joke played on you, at school or work or anywhere else. This year, 2018, April 1st also happens to be Easter or Resurrection Sunday. Resurrection Sunday could not only be seen as the day where Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ) defeated death and rose from the grave but it could be seen as something else as well.

After Yeshua was baptised by Yochanan (John The Baptist), He went into the desert and fasted for 40 days. After this Lucifer tried to trick Him and have Him worship him. Yeshua didn’t fall for it and stayed true to God. Through the rest of Yeshua’s ministry while here on Earth, before the crucifixion, Lucifer continued to try to stop Yeshua from spreading the Good News. Then after the Last Supper Judas betrayed Yeshua and turned Him over to the priests. He was sentenced to be crucified even though He had done no wrong. This would be the ultimate win for Lucifer and his kingdom of darkness. But wait for what happens next….

“Our Savior displayed on a criminal’s cross

Darkness rejoiced as though Heaven had lost

But then Jesus arose with our freedom in hand

That’s when death was arrested and my life began”

“Death Was Arrested”

Written by: Heath Balltzglier, Adam Kersh, Brandon Coker, and Paul Taylor Smith

Yeshua defeated death and rose from the grave on the third day like He had told his disciples He would.

But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.”

Matthew 28:5‭-‬7 NKJV

The ultimate trick was played on the prince of lies, deceits, and tricks. Lucifer thought he had won only to have had his greatest defeat yet. But there is more. Yeshua will be coming back again soon to completely defeat Lucifer and bring us all home with Him to heaven.

Happy Resurrection Sunday. God Bless.

Sharing Your Faith

Talking with strangers can be difficult for some people. Sharing your faith with them can be even harder. Even if you know the person it can be difficult to start up a conversation with them about God if they are not a believer.

Back in the spring of 2000 I took a trip with my college’s Campus Crusade For Christ group to Panama City Beach Florida for spring break. Our mission was to go out onto the beaches and share our faith with those who had come to party and drink. Having given my life to Christ with my own faith just a year earlier (I grew up in a Christian home but was just living out my parents faith before then) I was still new to the reaching out to others scene. I remember talking to a few people on the beach, but I wasn’t as adventurous as others in our group. It wasn’t until a year and a half later, when I joined a group called Captive Free, where I felt confidant and courageous enough to go out and share my faith with strangers. With Captive Free I had the chance to travel through the Great Lakes area for a year in a van going from church to church spreading God’s Word to others, mostly the youth. I have to say that once I took that step outside of my comfort zone I felt more confidant with sharing my faith and telling others about Christ.

And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.”

Mark 16:15 NKJV

Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ) says that we should go out onto the world and preach the gospel. To preach the gospel not only are you sharing God’s Word but your also sharing your faith. Anyone can just read someone something, but for that reading to help change their life you also need to share your faith with them. That may even mean opening up a little more then your comfortable with and sharing about your past. Showing that you care and make it more understandable means you might have to share some of your faults it mistakes you’ve made in the past. This can seem hard or impossible but with God’s help anything is possible. If this is hard for you at first just pray for strength, courage, and wisdom. I know that you shall receive if you believe because God wants us to share His love with others. Have a great day and God Bless.

Reason For The Season

Tonight is Christmas Eve. A time when family and friends get together to celebrate the holiday and exchange gifts. This season I hope that you and your family remember the real reason to celebrate this season.

For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

Luke 2:11 NKJV

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.

John 3:16 NKJV

This season is a celebration of an everlasting gift. The birth of Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ). May you and your family have a safe and happy holiday. Merry CHRISTmas. God Bless.

Enemies

Ever have someone hurt you, wrongfully accuse you, or bully you? We have all had someone do one, if not more, of these things to us.

Growing up I was definitely not one of the popular kids. I have a raspy voice, I walk a little hunched over, had a lazy eye, and my grades were average at best. I was the kid who was one of the first targets for bullies. I’ve been called Grandpa, hunchback, cross-eye, for eyes, among other things. I would be lying if I didn’t say that these things hurt me and probably helped form me into the person I am today. Looking back to those days I’ve chosen to forgive those who were mean. I can admit it wasn’t easy, but I think the easiest part is that I live a distance from where I grew up so I really don’t see these people anymore. Working in the retail world I can also deal with people who are mean and could be considered bullies. Again it can be hard to forgive and not let it affect me, but when I do struggle I just think of this verse.

“But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you”

Matthew 5:44 NKJV

Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ) says here in Matthew to bless those who curse you. He also has said to forgive them. Does that make what they did to you or me right? Most certainly not. It just no longer makes what they did continue to control our life. When Yeshua was betrayed, beaten, ridiculed, and hung on the Cross He didn’t curse those who were doing it, He asked God to forgive them. If Yeshua can do this while suffering through all that, we can follow suit and forgive those who hurt us. It can and will still be hard at times to do so, but with prayer God will help you to bless and forgive your enemies. God Bless.

Should Christians Celebrate Hanukkah?

Hanukkah is the Jewish festival of the rededication and purification of the Temple by Judas Maccabeus on Kislev 25 (165 BC) after it had been defiled by Antiochus IV, who was the Seleucid King, three years prior. Antiochus sacrificed a pig on the alter and claimed himself a god. When the Hasmoneans looked for oil they only found one Cruse of oil that had not been contaminated. This was enough to last for only one day. While they waited to get new oil that was not contaminated this one days worth of oil miraculously lasted for 8 days. This is the reason that starting the next year and on Jews would celebrate Hanukkah for 8 days.

Growing up in a Christian home I celebrated all the usual Christian holidays. Never did I celebrate a Jewish holiday. As I got older and started a family of my own I wanted to be closer to God and be more like Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ). My wife and I started looking into and learning about the things that Yeshua did while He was on Earth. Some of the things we learned was that He celebrated Jewish holidays and practiced Jewish traditions. Leaning this we decided that part of being like Yeshua would mean partaking in the celebrations and traditions that He and His disciples followed. Though His death on the Cross did change some things, like forgiveness though Him then a sacrifice on a alter, it didn’t change everything. The Jews are still God’s people and their traditions still matter to Him. We as Christians should honor God and Yeshua and partake in these traditions. Knowing about these traditions and partaking in them will help you have a close relationship with God. I hope that even though we are in the second day of Hanukkah as this posts that you will look into Hanukkah and possibly partake yourself the rest of this season. God Bless.