Tag Archives: Dad

Forgiveness in “Failure” 6/40

You are invited to join us for The Propel Fast! Please review Propelled To The Next Level and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement!

After the revelation of the importance of The 40, it seems necessary to remind ourselves who God is.  I have always been hardcore and radical about everything I do, and some people may mistake my intensity for harshness.

Exodus 34:6-7 And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, 

Here, God tells Moses He would show him His glory, and this is what happens.  The nature of God that he saw was mercy, grace, patience, goodness, truth, and forgiveness.

During The 40, it is quite probable that you may mess up or give in to temptation at some point.  I have even had a dream that I was eating meat.  In the dream, I was horrified because I was supposed to be fasting.

Remember this, God looks at and judges your heart. When your heart is to commit yourself to Him in love and obedience, He forgives the mistakes and rewards your intentions.  In contrast to this, the enemy will try to make you feel like a failure and use this tactic to pull you out of The 40.  There is forgiveness in “failure” and grace in the mistakes.

If your heart is set to seek The Lord, do not let anything hold you back from seeking Him:

Hebrews 12:1-2 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

We are looking to Jesus in the middle of our struggles, sins, and failures; and He will reward our hearts.

I think it was two years ago that my Dad was having a lot of pain in his knee and was thinking about getting it replaced. God prompted me to volunteer to fast and pray with Him for healing.  My Dad was a little reluctant and told me he wanted to pray about it first.  About a month later, I found out that from that time, he had no more pain or trouble with his knee.  This was a blessing for me to see how God honored my heart. Even though I did not really want to go through the fast, I was willing, and God worked because of that willingness.

I share this story as an encouragement to you that in the event any mistake might be made.  Press on!  Keep going!  Do not give up on The 40!  God forgives completely and can cause you to walk in the fullness of The 40 if your heart is to press in and please Him. 

Please know, this also applies to those who are not physically able to go The 40.  If you started on only water and have to shift your fast because of health issues, keep your heart right.  In doing this, God will help you continue in the same power of The 40 even if it has to change. 

Jesus, bless us with success and bring forgiveness for what others may see as failure.  Help my heart to be set totally to praise, honor, and glorify You!

Practical – 

  • Ask God to reveal any area of weakness and to strengthen you with His mercy.
  • Any area of supposed failure to keep The 40, ask God to forgive you and recommit to press in to Him.
  • Walk The 40 in full assurance that God is with you to help, strengthen, and even restore you if you fall.

May you be blessed to fully complete The 40 whether by God’s strength and sustenance or by forgiveness and restoration!!!

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Busy For the Kingdom

A couple days ago, we got to preach and minister at my friend Sam Douthwaite’s church (http://www.gatewaynewcastle.org/).  We were able to do the kind of ministry that everyone sees and appreciates.  After that, we were at St. Lukes for a Christmas Carol service and were able to pray and encourage several people there as well.  Sunday morning and evening at the church, this is what immediately comes to mind when we we think of ministry.

The very next day, we were able to do ministry of a different sort.  Some may not call it ministry, but it is what Followers of Christ should be doing all the time.  We set out with the intention of buying some Christmas presents at the local shopping center for my Sister and her Fiance.  We will be visiting them this weekend and celebrating Christmas a little early.  While we were here, we had two encounters that could have easily gone by us if we were too busy to take the time.

The first happened mainly because of me.  As we were passing an Apple store, I wanted to go in and look at the new Ipad Air.  This was an extremely silly thing for me to do, because I do not have the money, nor could ever justify it if I had the money, to buy one.  I just thought I would look at it.  Well, while we were in this shop, we ran across Steve who we had met at church two weeks ago.  He works for Compassion International helping others to learn about how they can be a part of change in the lives of needy children.  We were able to talk with Him a little more and meet his wife and almost 2 year old son.  This was an encouragement to me and I believe was good for them as well.  If we were busy or just attending the business at hand, we would have very quickly passed by and never taken the time to chat with these wonderful people and make that valuable connection with them.

A little later, as we struggled through the increasing crowd, we were stopped by a man named Carlton.  He had a sleeping bag thrown around his shoulders and was obviously a homeless man.  We could have easily passed him by like so many others, but we stopped and talked with him.  We even got the opportunity to pray with him and just talk about the Lord.  Even though we did not have the time and not really any money to give him, we were able to be an encouragement to him just by talking to him and giving him our time.

As the busy Christmas season is around us and we are attending parties and buying presents and fighting the madhouse of crowds just to get to wherever we are going, lets be conscious of where God is moving.  Let us never be to busy to join Him in His work.  My encouragement to you, is to not be busy!!!  Busyness means that what I am doing is more important that what you are doing and causes us to lose track of the One who is really important.  One of my earliest and favorite memories of Christmas is my Dad singing “Jesus is the reason for the season, Jesus is Lord Emmanuel.  He can’t get the glory without the story, Jesus is Lord Emmanuel.”

Always remember that Jesus is the reason for the season.  If we get so busy that we do not even take time to do what Jesus did and bless the people that need it most, with time, money, just talking to them, or something more, how can God ever get the glory?  Let us put away the busyness of the season that says me and mine are more important than anything and lets put on Jesus who humbled Himself and became obedient, looking out for the wellbeing of others rather than Himself.  We cannot be selfish with what we have if we truly recognize what Jesus gave up just so that we could live!!!

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!