How would your church respond?

August 18, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

“To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:

These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, `I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.

Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.

To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”
(Revelation 3:14-22 (NIV))

How would your church respond to this?

Since it is not all rosy, would there be a knee-jerk reaction to reject it or ignore it?

That is the problem with many churches today. It is all about public image and not necessarily about responding to God’s call or correction. Can you imagine the reaction if someone said that they would spit your church out? Think about that. When you spit something out of your mouth it is because it leaves a very bad taste. It makes you sick.

What would that say about the church this was told to? Would you listen and try to repent, or would it be brushed under the rug so no one would know?

I know that everyone, including churches, has dirty laundry that they don’t want aired. What if the dirty laundry that you are hiding or ignoring is something that would make Jesus spit you out of His mouth? What if it was keeping you from God’s full grace?

It is impossible to grow and mature in Christ when you ignore what you don’t like or what you feel is negative. Jesus did not spend His time on earth complimenting people and sugar-coating what needed to happen. Why do we think that the church must do what Jesus didn’t do?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Are you willing to suffer for Christ?

April 10, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.
(Philippians 1:12-14 (NIV))

Are you willing to suffer for Christ?

We think of Paul as a great evangelist. What we often fail to recognize is his willingness to be placed in jail for the sake of the Gospel. Paul was willing to place himself in harms way in order to further the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

When was the last time that you were willing to go across the street to do something that would further the Gospel? Have we become lazy and too self-centered to place the eternal souls of others before our own temporary comfort? Personally, I find myself falling into that category far too often. What would Paul write to us today to encourage us? What would Jesus say about our actions? Would He find us lukewarm?

So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
(Revelation 3:16 (NIV))

We need to be prepared to do as Jesus commanded.

Then he said to them all: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.
(Luke 9:23 (NIV))

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Do you have the mind of Christ?

February 18, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment:
“For who has known the mind of the Lord
that he may instruct him?”
But we have the mind of Christ.
(1 Corinthians 2:14-16 (NIV))

I read this passage and it hit home!

We think that we are spiritual and listen to God because we don’t directly rebel. We look at those who rebel against God and think that we have an inside track to God’s heart.

What is the difference between those who rebel against God and those who seek after God’s heart? What is it that makes one person claim that anything to do with God is foolishness and the one person who embraces every word that God speaks?

Do you see yourself in these polar opposites? Perhaps you see yourself somewhere in the middle. Do you find yourself thinking that God is foolishness when what He says contradicts what you want to do? Do you embrace God’s promises when they will benefit what you want?

Do you want to know the mind of God?

Do you want to be so in tune with what is on His heart that you see things as He sees them?

We are seeing things unfolding in this world that I would have never imagined happening in my lifetime. Many in our society, and in the world, are calling the things of God foolishness. They are rebelling against what is righteous. We, as the Body of Christ, cannot be in the middle.

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
(Revelation 3:15-16 (NIV))

We must fully embrace, we must fully know the mind of the Lord and accept His instruction.

We must have the mind of Christ in all that we do?

Do you have the mind of Christ?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Do you do what is right and good in the eyes of God?

January 7, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

“”Be just and fair to all,” says the LORD. “Do what is right and good . . . ” ”
(Isaiah 56:1 (NLT))

In today’s society, many people claim to do this, but there is a catch! They are only concerned about doing what is right if it benefits them. Too many people do not consider the good of other people above their own needs.

Think back throughout history.

What events and what people stand out as having the biggest impact in history?

There are two extremes to this answer. Either they were extremely egotistical and selfish and wanted to dominate the world, or they were selfless and extremely giving of themselves and impacted the lives of other people in a positive way. The world has a tendency to remember the extremes. It is easy to see where the extremes stand in perspective. What is difficult to see is where the middle ground, or lukewarm people stand. They can be easily swayed one way or another, but never really make a commitment to do what is truly right and good. They never commit to follow God. They are indecisive.

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
(Revelation 3:15-16 (NIV))

Do you do what is right and good in the eyes of God?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
Subscribe to daily email delivery


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