Saturday, July 16, 2011
"ENTHUSIASM IS CONTAGIOUS-Always Be Ready to Explain the Hope of Your Salvation"
Good Evening to All!
I have read two different devotions today, but it was "uncanny how they seemed to fit right together.
"Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."
The woman said to him, "sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty." . . .
Jesus said to her, "Go, call your husband, an d come here." The woman answered him, "I have no husband." Jesus said to her, "You are right in saying, 'I have no husband'; for you have had five husbands, and the one you now have is not your husband. what you have said is true." . . .
So the woman left her water jar and went away into town and said to the people, "Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did." . . .
John 4:14-18, 28-29 ESV
Jesus asked a woman a a well for a drink and that surprised her. Jewish men didn't speak to women, and certainly not to a woman in "her position." Most women drew water early, before the sun got too hot. This woman came in the middle of the day to avoid the other women as they would not have welcomed her.
Jesus always reached out to people shunned by others. He drew the woman into discussion, offered her living water, and revealed himself to be the Messiah. She left her water jug and ran into town to tel others, even those who had "snubbed" her, about Jesus. She was so excited about what He had said to her, and Who He was, she didn't care who she came in contact with, she just wanted to share the good news and allow them to see for themselves. This is a wonderful example of enthusiasm. The people went to see Him and invited Jesus to stay, and he visited for two days. The "woman's at the well" enthusiasm changed her community as her testimony caused many to believe.
Our words and enthusiasm for Jesus can change communities. We should tell everyone we meet about Jesus, our Savior.
Now. . . this being said, I know from experience, that we must be careful in how we present the Gospel and the love of Jesus Christ. There is such a thing as being "over-zealous" which will inevitably scare people off. I say I know from experience because I have had it done to me, and I have probably done it to others early in my Christian infancy.
While we may know what the Bible says, and we pray about what to say, we must also pray that the Holy Ghost will place the words in our hearts and in our mouths to speak. If we allow the Holy Ghost to do the talking, then we can't go wrong. I have learned to pray for several things. First I pray that God will bring people into my path that I may be a witness to . I then pray that He will prepare their hearts. I don't care how hard you try, if people are not willing to listen, and are not hungry for the truth, your voice will be falling on deaf ears.
In other words don't go up to people like a "steam roller", blurting out scriptures, passages and facts. Talk about our Lord in a loving manner, as though you are talking about your best friend (which He is). Be excited about what He has done for you and tell them about how He showed His love for you. I'm not saying tell them your life's story and everything bad that went on in your life. Just let them know how He was there for you in your time of need, and how that made you feel.
Now in 1 Peter 3:15, He says but sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to ever man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear (respect). KJV
Keep a clear conscience so that those who speak evil of your good life in Christ will be made ashamed. It is better to suffer for doing good than for doing wrong if that is what God wants.
1 Peter 4:1--For the sake of our Salvation, we need to change our lives. Since Christ suffered while He was in His body, strengthen yourselves with the same way of thinking Christ had. The person who has suffered in the body is finished with sin. (2)Strengthen yourselves so that you will live here on earth doing what God wants, not the evil things people want.
Use God's Gifts Wisely--The time is near when all things will end. So think clearly and control yourselves so you will be able to pray. Most importantly, love each other deeply, because love will cause many sins to be forgiven.
Christians have a corner on hope. Why? The basis of all hope is Knowing WHO GOD IS. There is no hope without a God who controls the universe and promises to bring us to heaven. I know that the one thing that keeps me grounded when I see this world falling apart with immorality going rampant, economy going into the tank, and weather going crazy, is that God Is In Control.
Take some time and think about how your hope might affect the heart of a nonbeliever. What should be your purpose in everything you do? Last but certainly not least, Ask God to fulfill His purpose through you. Remember that we as Christians are suppose to let God's love shine through us.
While the above are just a few points of scripture, I welcome you and encourage you to read the complete passages of scripture which I have mentioned. Every word which God has inspired to be put into these Bibles are important, and need to be taken seriously. This is not a book to be read once and put into a garage sale like other "best sellers". It is a book to continually refer back to for our whole life. I also encourage you to pray for understanding before you read it. God will open it up to you wider than you can imagine. If you have questions, talk to your Pastor or someone you know who is deep into the Word and love of God shines through them. Don't assume you know what it is always talking about. Don't just go by what your Pastor says. Read the Word for yourself. Study it. Pray about it. Live it. and Spread it. Spread your enthusiasm for God and His Word. I guarantee, there is no better feeling than when you are talking about your personal relationship with God Himself. Even though I am not Catholic, I have the utmost respect for Mother Theresa. She was and is the epitome of what God expects of His children. She constantly showed love and respect to all, no matter what their plight was. She loved as God wants us all to love. When I look at her, I see pure enthusiasm. Even though I don't see many pictures of her smiling, her actions alone show the love and enthusiasm she has for God.
Don't just be a "Sunday and Wednesday Christian. Remember, the "test" of our Christianity is outside the four walls of the church building. I watched a special on TV this evening about End-Time Prophecy. Irvin Baxter who is an expert on end time prophecy and Mark Lerner is involved with an organization of Christian lawyers dealing with Constitutional Issues were discussing what is going on right now. They were talking about the "mark of the beast" and how close it is to coming into being. The technology is already in place and the United Nations is working on getting the RFID ( Radio Frequency ID chip). They are already using it in animals and they are talking about putting it either in us humans by injections or as a tattoo. They use the guise that it will help us if we are in a car wreck and can't speak for ourselves, or if our children are lost and so forth. These are all good arguments, the problem is, it can also be used for our personal information, bank accounts and so on. So, look out world, here it comes.
This is why I am saying we need to get serious about our relationship with God, and spend some time on our knees in prayer for strength and wisdom. Only the Holy Spirit will be able to help us to discern when these wolves in sheep's clothing come to deceive us, and we need to be "Prayed up". We need to witness to as many people as possible and help them to understand how important God is and their salvation is to their eternal soul.
In case you are wondering the way my mind works, it started out thinking about the devotions of being enthusiastic about God and having it "catch on with others", then, my mind drifted to the next devotion which talked about witnessing to others about the hope of salvation and sharing our testimony about it. This brought me to the realization of being "ready" and able to stand up to the end-time prophecies which are soon coming.
I hope I was able to be distinguishable between the different "subtopics" so that it wasn't all jumbled together and that you were able to receive something from God through this post.
Good Night To All and May God Bless!