Lord, Lord

Luke 6: 46

And why do you call Me “Lord, Lord,” and do not do what I say?

Jesus is the most kind, most compassionate person any of us know, yet He is not afraid to tell it like it is. And this is pretty plain language. Jesus is not impressed with lip service. A person can bow and kowtow all he wants. He can say Jesus is his Lord until the cows come home, but none of that matters to Jesus. The proof is in the pudding, as they say. What are you doing?

In John 14: 21 Jesus said, “He who has My commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me.” In other words, show your fealty by obeying His commands. Do what He has said. Did He say love one another even as He has loved us? (John 13: 34). Hasn’t He said, give generously and judge not (Luke 6)? Then those words should guide our actions. Jesus is the Word (John 1). Are we doing what the Word says?

Now just in case Jesus had not made himself plain enough in Luke 6, listen to His words in Matthew 7: 21, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.”

Jesus wants us to honor Him by doing what He says to do. He doesn’t want us just to tell Him how much we love Him, but rather to demonstrate it by doing what He says and by loving others. Being a deacon at the church doesn’t buy you into heaven. Following the Words of Jesus is what matters. Do you want to please Jesus? Do you want to be one of the people of whom Jesus says, “He/she loves me?” Then follow His words.  Obey His commands.

Action Thought: What one area can you improve in today?


Philippians 2: 9 -10

Therefore also God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth.

Verse eight of Philippians 2 tells us that Jesus humbled himself by becoming obedient even to the point of death. Therefore, God highly exalted Him. Jesus has been given the name which is above all names and the name to which every knee will bow.

Now as soon as some people read that, they chafed against those words. They may not admit it aloud, but they do not like the idea of bowing their knee to anyone. It is even hard to admit to oneself that the idea causes an internal tension. We really must allow ourselves to release our ego to our Father. It was this very thing that caused Jesus to be so highly exalted. He was able to humble himself to the point that His will no longer mattered. Obedience to the Father is all that really mattered. That is not to say that it is easy. It wasn’t even easy for Jesus, but we are able. Jesus fought the temptation to serve His own interest. We can and should do the same. Why? Because God would like also to exalt you.

And truly there is no joy greater than obeying the Father. I do not say that it is always easy, but I do say that there is great gratification in it. We often think that God is trying to get something from us, but it is just the opposite. He is trying to get something to us. If we will really learn humility; if we meditate on what it truly means to be humble and others centered, then we will find great revelation in the Father and in what He can do with us, and nothing is more fun than working with the Father. This week give time to the ideas of humility and obedience. Let yourself ponder what it means to be humble and ask the Father how you can be more obedient. I can promise you will have a very good week if you do.

Honoring Your Name

Psalm 86: 11 – 12                  TPT

Teach me more about you, how you work and how you move, so that I can walk onward in your truth until everything within me brings honor to your name. With all my heart and passion I will thank you my God!

I hardly know what to write about this passage. This is a prayer from David, and it sounds like it, doesn’t it? I was first attracted to the section about teaching us to move like Him, work like Him but then I am over-taken by David’s entreaty that God teach him so that everything about him brings honor to God’s name. Oh my! How short I fall of that goal. What if I made that a cry of my heart, to live my life, to follow my Lord so closely that everything within me, everything about me brings honor to my Lord? What a life that would be!

And why not? Why not set that as a goal, but it really isn’t about it being a goal or setting this before us as a goal. It is about the cry of a heart which longs to know God so precisely, so intimately that every thought, word and deed reflects an all encompassing passion for the Father.

It is a good thing to want to know how the Father works, how He moves and I have prayed that for years. Now, though, I ask myself why. I believe the answer is out of a desire for success. If we do things the way Father does then we are assured of being successful, right? Perhaps, now, I am growing up and because of that bringing honor to His name impassions my soul.

God was good to David and David trusted Him explicitly. However, it seems that David loved God for more than just what God could do for him. He knew how to trust God for daily provision. He knew how to believe God for rescue even in the most dire circumstances. Above all else, though, he loved God for who He is and he longed to honor Him and give Him praise. I want to be like David. I want to walk in truth until everything within me brings honor to His name. That is an aspiration for a life eternal.

Honor and Respect

Psalm 105: 15, Isaiah 49: 25, Genesis 12: 3

Do not touch My anointed ones, and do My prophets no harm. For I will contend with the one who contends with you. I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse.

These three verses come together to make one big point, don’t mess with God’s anointed. First, I think of our pastors. God has called people out of other professions they might have chosen to apply themselves to His work. The pay scale is not typically commiserate with what they could make in the secular world. They often have limited budgets and limited personnel to work with but despite all the limitations they are expected to be miracle workers. I believe the expectation is even reasonable. Where I think we have a problem is in our respect for those God has called.

It is very easy to criticize the pastor. We live in an egalitarian age which I believe is good but that does not entitle us to demean anyone much less our spiritual leaders. It is in our best interest to honor our pastors because our own blessing is included in our homage and respect to them. God Himself says He will contend with those who oppose or denigrate His called ones. This should be a loud warning to us. People aren’t perfect, not even our pastors but they are called by God and anointed by Him. His protection is on them so we criticize them at our own peril.

It is important to note that you are God’s anointed to. That means these protections extend to you also. All of God’s children are ministers of God’s grace and called to carry the gospel to the world but His teachers, pastors, prophets, etc. are appointed to prepare us to take the good news into all the world. So even though we are all ministers, and all loved by the Father, He still does not allow us to run down those He has chosen to minister to us and to Him.

Heed this warning, because God has said and intends to honor and protect his elected. Stay in the blessing by blessing those God has given you.

Jesus is Lord?

Romans 10: 9         NIV

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

Do you call Jesus Lord? Do you worship him as Lord? Do your daily behaviors reflect his lordship? Do you obey him as lord?

The first question is easy, but I find each subsequent one gets harder. First, I must ask myself what it means to worship him, obey him and reflect him as Lord. We do not live in the feudal Europe of the past, so the idea of lordship is a bit foreign to us. Add to that the high value we place on individuality and independence and we become even further removed. Yet, we are called upon to serve him as our lord. In fact, wasn’t it a prerequisite of your salvation? Didn’t we accept him and confess him as our lord?

The best tool I have is movies. I think about the medieval era movies I have watched and that adds texture to my thoughts. Jesus’ obligation is to care for me. He is to defend me against my enemies and I owe him fealty. I owe him obedience, respect and honor. In return, all my problems become his. I am his responsibility.

Jesus is certainly our brother and our best friend, and we should not lose sight of that, but he is also Lord. His lordship is weighty and should be. He takes his responsibility towards us seriously. We must bear our responsibility towards him just as soberly. His commands are life and death. They are not just wishes. He gives them to us to impart abundant life to us, but obedience is a value unto itself. We should hearken to his word even when we do not understand. His having spoken should be enough.

What is Jesus saying to you today? What has he told you in the past? What are the goals and directives he has given for your life? Has he given you something to do that is yet undone? We are all given this day to begin anew. Each day we have the opportunity to improve upon yesterday. Each day is new and carries new promise. We are not called into condemnation but rather reevaluation. Are we where we want to be in our walk with Jesus? What does he wish to speak to us? Where is he leading us?

Jesus is Lord. He is our leader. His word is command even though it is also blessing. He is a benevolent lord and that is a worthy statement. He is worthy of honor and service. We should enter his court with high praise. He is our lord and our king.

Honor and Esteem

Isaiah 43: 4

You are honored and I love you.

This quote is part of verse four. I left out the word “since” because it is italicized which means the translators added it. There is another part I left out which I really do wish to share with you. It reads that you are precious in God’s sight. So, let’s see if we can really take this in. God is saying to each one of us that we are precious, honored and He loves us.

At some point you have to wonder why the ruler of the universe would even stoop to say such crazy stuff to us. Why does He really care? I mean, look around. Are we really such a great prize? You would think that the guy who made everything we can see, the one for whom miracles are common place could do much better than us.

At one level, He loves us because in the beginning He chose to. He made a decision and He hasn’t backed off of it. Are we worthy? No way! But God knew what He was doing. He knows, even now, who we will become. When we finally see His face, we will be transformed and we will become the family He has long desired. He sees who we are on the inside and He knows the journey we are on. There is no mystery to Him. We may be stumbling around now but He will lead us in the way and we will finally see in ourselves what He has seen all along.

There is something about you that made you worth sending Jesus into the earth as a ransom. God loves us. It sounds silly when you really think about it but the sooner we can accept it, the better for us all. If we are honored and precious, it is because of whose children we are and in the end, our love for Him will shine like the sun, perhaps even like the “son.”

God knows you and even so, still loves you. He sees how precious you are. He sees in your heart and you are a delight to Him. Okay, we mess up routinely but He knows we are growing and we will outgrow all of this foolishness. We have been made completely worthy, even as we are now, in Jesus. There is nothing more precious than the blood which has redeemed us.

Today, start this week as the honored, precious and highly esteemed child of the Lord. Let Him raise you up in your own eyes, not because of anything you have done but because of who you are – His child. Be humble, but be accepting. Let God love on you. I tell you the truth, if you will let His love permeate your being, you will grow and you will find His manifested presence with you constantly. If you have been looking for the secret, this is it. Let God love you. Accept His love. Believe in His lovingkindness towards you. There is no greater power in the universe than His love and nothing better you can do to live in power than to surrender to His uncompromising love. Go, highly honored, precious child of the King, and have a great life.

Wisdom’s Fruit

Proverb 8: 32 – 36

Now therefore, O sons, listen to me, for blessed are they who keep my ways. Heed instruction and be wise, and do not neglect it. Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at my doorposts. For he who finds me finds life and obtains favor from the Lord, “but he who sins against me injures himself; all those who hate me love death.”

The speaker in this passage is wisdom. Wisdom was in the beginning with God and by her He founded the earth. “Long life is in her right hand; In her left hand are riches and honor” (Proverb 3: 16). In her are blessing and life, so if we want either those or riches, we should seek wisdom. She promised that those who diligently seek her will find her (Proverb 8: 17). This book of the proverbs is her book. She discloses herself here and the fruit of seeking her.

One of the first things I noticed from this excerpt from the eighth proverb is that we must heed instruction. That, I believe, creates a rather large stumbling block. To receive instruction requires humility and we are loathe to humble ourselves before anyone, even sometimes God. God gives wisdom to people on earth and they are meant to share it with others. However, one cannot share what others will not receive. However, wisdom teaches us that it is in our own self-interest to seek and receive the offerings of wisdom.

Another fruit of receiving wisdom is favor from the Lord. I like to think of God’s favor as the grease on the wheels of life. As you enjoy the Lord’s favor, life simply goes more smoothly. All sorts of things, both small and large, just seem to go your way. From getting a good parking place to securing a major contract for your business, God’s favor greases the way and we obtain that favor when we seek wisdom and heed her lessons.

Wisdom is calling out in the streets. She wants to be your ally. If you seek her, you will find her and one great way to seek her is in this book of wisdom , the Proverbs. Honor is with her; success is in her hand. She wants to bless you. Call upon her and receive, of the Lord, all His goodness.