5 Habits - Dec 8 & 9

FIVE HABITS FOR LIFE CHANGE

THE HABIT OF SEEKING GOD

“… he asked him, ‘Of all the commandments, which is the most important?’” Mark 12:28b NIV 

“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31 NIV

A BIG QUESTION TO CONSIDER: WHAT IS GOD LIKE?

“In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being…” Hebrews 1:3a NIV

“If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” John 14:7-9 NIV

JESUS’ DISPOSITION TOWARDS PEOPLE IS THE SAME AS GOD’S DISPOSITION TOWARDS PEOPLE

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” John 3:16-17 ESV 

TWO BENEFITS OF WORSHIP

1)    WHEN WE WORSHIP GOD WE GIVE HIM WHAT HE DESIRES.

“But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.” John 4:23 ESV

 2)    WORSHIP IS A LIFESTYLE THAT RELEASES SUPERNATURAL POWER.

“Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have ordained strength, Because of Your enemies, That You may silence the enemy and the avenger.” Psalm 8:2 NKJV

“When I cry out to You, then my enemies will turn back; This I know, because God is for me.”  Psalm 56:9 NKJV

“But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s chains were loosed.”  Acts 16:25-26 NKJV

THREE SIMPLE HABITS YOU CAN PRACTICE IN YOUR WORSHIP 

1)    PRACTICE PREPARING YOUR HEART FOR WORSHIP.

“These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules.” Matthew 15:8-9 NIV

2)    PRACTICE PUTTING GOD FIRST.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:33 NKJV

3)    PRACTICE SURRENDERING YOUR TO GOD.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.” Romans 12:1 NIV 

WORSHIP CAN HAVE MANY EXPRESSIONS, BUT TRUE WORSHIP ISN’T A STYLE. IT’S OUR RESPONSE TO THE VALUE WE PLACE ON GOD’S WORTH.

5 Habits - Dec 1 & 2

FIVE HABITS FOR LIFE CHANGE

THE HABIT OF SHARING CHRIST

“Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come.” 1 Timothy‬ ‭4:8‬ ‭NLT‬‬‬‬‬‬

PRACTICING THIS HABIT TAPS INTO THE UNLIMITED POWER OF GOD

“If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord — and he will repay you!” Proverbs‬ ‭19:17‬ ‭NLT‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

THE GREATEST GIFT YOU CAN EVER GIVE SOMEONE IS THE GIFT OF CHRIST

“God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him may not be lost, but have eternal life.” John‬ ‭3:16‬ ‭NCV‬‬‬‬‬‬

GIVING THE GIFT OF CHRIST IS OUR MISSION

‘’Jesus said to his followers, “Go everywhere in the world, and tell the Good News to everyone.”” Mark‬ ‭16:15‬ ‭NCV‬‬‬‬‬‬

“For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”” Romans‬ ‭10:13-15‬ ‭NLT‬‬‬‬‬‬

“After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go. Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”” Luke‬ ‭10:1-2‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬

4 EXERCISES TO HELP US SHARE THE GOSPEL.

1) MAKE A PRAYER LIST

“Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved.” Romans‬ ‭10:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” 2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬‬‬‬‬

2) BUILD BRIDGES WITH PEOPLE

“Jesus told his disciples: “There was a rich man whose manager was accused of wasting his possessions. So he called him in and asked him, ‘What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your management, because you cannot be manager any longer.’ The manager said to himself, ‘What shall I do now? My master is taking away my job. I’m not strong enough to dig, and I’m ashamed to beg— I know what I’ll do so that, when I lose my job here, people will welcome me into their houses.’ So he called in each one of his master’s debtors. He asked the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ ‘Nine hundred gallons of olive oil,’ he replied. The manager told him, ‘Take your bill, sit down quickly, and make it four hundred and fifty.’ Then he asked the second, ‘And how much do you owe?’ ‘A thousand bushels of wheat,’ he replied. He told him, ‘Take your bill and make it eight hundred.’ The master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly. For the people of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their own kind than are the people of the light. I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.” Luke‬ ‭16:1-9‬ ‭NIV‬‬‬‬‬‬

“When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. I do everything to spread the Good News and share in its blessings.” 1 Corinthians‬ ‭9:22-23‬ ‭NLT‬‬‬‬‬‬

3) BE PREPARED TO SHARE THE GOSPEL

“… Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” 1 Peter‬ ‭3:15‬ ‭NIV‬‬‬‬‬‬

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Colossians‬ ‭4:6‬ ‭NIV‬‬‬‬‬‬

4) INVITE THEM

“And Nathanael said to him, ‘Can anything good come out of Nazareth?’ Philip said to him, ‘Come and see.’” John‬ ‭1:46‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬

“Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ?” John‬ ‭4:29‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

5 Habits - Nov 24 & 25

Habit Of Serving God by Serving Others

You Were Created For A Purpose

“Before I made you in your mother’s womb, I chose you. Before you were born, I set you apart for a special work.” Jeremiah 1:5 NCV

“In the same way that you gave me a mission in the world, I give them a mission in the world.” John 17:18 MSG

  1. I MUST ABANDON ALL DISTRACTIONS

“Anyone who lets himself be distracted from the work I plan for him is not fit for the Kingdom of God.” Luke 9:62 TLB

4 of the biggest distractions that will cause you to miss God’s plan for your life:

I. Fear

“Go wherever I send you and speak whatever I tell you to. And don’t be afraid of the people, for I, the Lord, will be with you and see you through.” Jeremiah 1:7a-8 TLB

II. Wallowing In Your Past Mistakes and Failures 

III. Worrying About What Other People Think Of You

“The only person you should try to be better than is who you were yesterday.”

“Let everyone be sure that he is doing his very best, for then he will have the personal satisfaction of work well done and won’t need to compare himself with someone else.” Galatians 6:4 TLB

IV. YOUR PLANS ARE A DISTRACTION

“Turn me away from wanting any other plan than yours…” Psalm 119:37a TLB

“Let us strip off anything that slows us down or holds us back, and especially those sins that wrap themselves so tightly around our feet and trip us up…” Hebrews 12:1b TLB

1.      How badly do you want to be what God has created you to be?
2.   What are you willing to remove in order to get it?

“You aren’t willing to receive from me the life you say you want. John 5:40 MSG

2. I MUST ADOPT GOD’S PURPOSE 

“… give yourselves completely to God—every part of you… you want to be tools in the hands of God, to be used for his good purposes.” Romans 6:13 TLB

3. I MUST ANTICIPATE GOD’S HELP

“He will always give you all you need from day to day if you will make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.” Luke 12:31 TLB

 

 

5 Habits - Nov 17 & 18

FIVE HABITS FOR LIFE CHANGE

 “Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8 NLT

  •  THE HABIT OF SEEKING GOD: WORSHIP

  • THE HABIT OF BELONGING TO GOD’S FAMILY: MEMBERSHIP

  • THE HABIT OF GROWING UP SPIRITUALLY: MATURITY

  • THE HABIT OF SERVING GOD’S FAMILY: MINISTRY

  • THE HABIT OF SHARING CHRIST: MISSION

 HOW DO I DEVELOP THE HABITS THAT HELP ME GROW UP SPIRITUALLY?

 “For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was aware and loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren.” Romans 8:29 AMPC 

“There is much more we would like to say about this, but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen. You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong.” Hebrews 5:11-14 NLT

I) SPIRITUALLY FIT PEOPLE START THEIR DAY SPENDING TIME WITH GOD. 

“My voice You shall hear in the morning, O LORD; In the morning I will direct it to You, And I will look up.” Psalm 5:3 NKJV

“Worship GOD if you want the best; worship opens doors to all his goodness.” Psalm 34:9 MSG

“... in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Psalm 16:11b ESV

II) FOUR THINGS TO PRACTICE WHEN SITTING IN GOD’S PRESENCE. 

1) PRACTICE BEING THANKFUL.

“Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.” Psalm 100:4 NKJV

“This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24 NKJV 

2) PRACTICE CASTING ALL YOUR CARES ON HIM IN PRAYER.

“Casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 ESV

3) PRACTICE LETTING HIM KNOW ALL YOUR HOPES AND DREAMS.

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God…” Philippians 4:6 NKJV 

“Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 NKJV

4) PRACTICE THINKING ON HIS PROMISES.

“I’ve banked your promises in the vault of my heart so I won’t sin myself bankrupt.” Psalm 119:11 MSG 

III) SPIRITUALLY FIT PEOPLE SPEND TIME FEEDING ON GOD’S WORD

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness…” 2 Timothy 3:16 NIV

GOD’S WORD IS….

  • FOUNDATION FOR MY LIFE                MATTHEW 7:24-25

  • ROAD MAP FOR SUCCESS                   JOSHUA 1:8

  • SWORD FOR PROTECTION                  EPHESIANS 6:17

  • FOOD FOR STRENGTH                        MATTHEW 4:4

  • OUR TEACHER                                     2 TIMOTHY 3:16

5 Habits - Nov 10 & 11

The Habit of Belonging To God’s Family: From Isolation to Insulation

Psalm 133:1, 1 Corinthians 6:12, Hebrews 10:24-25, Acts 2:42, Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, Job 1:13-21

"Habit is either the best of servants or the worst of masters." - Nathaniel Emmons

“Everything is permissible for me,” but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible for me,” but I will not be mastered by anything.” 1 Corinthians 6:12 (CSB)

 “What then is Apollos? What is Paul? They are servants through whom you believed, and each has the role the Lord has given. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s coworkers. You are God’s field, God’s building.” 1 Corinthians 3:5-9 (CSB)

1. I am wanted and I belong.

“He came and proclaimed the good news of peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access in one spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with the saints, and members of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone. In him the whole building, being put together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you are also being built together for God’s dwelling in the Spirit.” Ephesians 2:17-22 (CSB) 

2. Jesus Knows My Name.

“He entered Jericho and was passing through. There was a man named Zacchaeus who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich. He was trying to see who Jesus was, but he was not able because of the crowd, since he was a short man. So running ahead, he climbed up a sycamore tree to see Jesus, since he was about to pass that way. When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down because today it is necessary for me to stay at your house.” So he quickly came down and welcomed him joyfully. All who saw it began to complain, “He’s gone to stay with a sinful man.” But Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, “Look, I’ll give half of my possessions to the poor, Lord. And if I have extorted anything from anyone, I’ll pay back four times as much.” “Today salvation has come to this house,” Jesus told him, “because he too is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost.”” Luke 19:1-10 (CSB)

“Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up; but pity the one who falls without another to lift him up. Also, if two lie down together, they can keep warm; but how can one person alone keep warm? And if someone overpowers one person, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not easily broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 (CSB)

3. Generate Habits That Serve You Well.

“And let us watch out for one another to provoke love and good works, not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.” Hebrews 10:24-25 (CSB) 

“One day when Job’s sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, a messenger came to Job and reported: “While the oxen were plowing and the donkeys grazing nearby, the Sabeans swooped down and took them away. They struck down the servants with the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you!” He was still speaking when another messenger came and reported: “God’s fire fell from heaven. It burned the sheep and the servants and devoured them, and I alone have escaped to tell you!” That messenger was still speaking when yet another came and reported: “The Chaldeans formed three bands, made a raid on the camels, and took them away. They struck down the servants with the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you!” He was still speaking when another messenger came and reported: “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house. Suddenly a powerful wind swept in from the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It collapsed on the young people so that they died, and I alone have escaped to tell you!” Then Job stood up, tore his robe, and shaved his head. He fell to the ground and worshiped, saying: Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will leave this life. The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” Job 1:13-21 (CSB)

5 Habits - Nov 3 & 4

FIVE HABITS FOR CHANGE

HAVE YOU EVER THOUGHT ABOUT YOUR HABITS?  

“I don’t mind repeating what I have written in earlier letters, and I hope you don’t mind hearing it again. Better safe than sorry—so here goes.”  Philippians 3:1b MSG

 THE HABIT OF SEEKING GOD: WORSHIP
THE HABIT OF BELONGING TO GOD’S FAMILY:
MEMBERSHIP
THE HABIT OF GROWING UP SPIRITUALLY:
MATURITY
THE HABIT OF SERVING GOD’S FAMILY:
MINISTRY
THE HABIT OF SHARING CHRIST:
MISSION

DEVELOPING SPIRITUAL HABITS TAKES TIME AND EFFORT.

“Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come” 1 Timothy 4:8 NLT

WILL POWER ALONE ISN’T ENOUGH.

“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do… For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it… What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.” Romans 7:15, 18-20, 24-25 NIV

1) SOMETHING FAR GREATER THAN WILL POWER IS PURPOSE POWER.

“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” Ephesians 3:20 NKJV

“Without prophetic vision people run wild, but blessed are those who follow God’s teachings.”  Proverbs 29:18 GW

2) THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND ITS POWER COME AS A SEED.

“Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”” Luke 17:20-21 NKJV

“And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”” Mark 4:26-29 NKJV

WHAT IS A KINGDOM SEED?

IT’S A THOUGHT
THAT BECOMES A DESIRE
THAT MOVES US TO ACTION
BECOMING A HABIT
PRODUCING A HARVEST

“And the desire of the righteous will be granted.” Proverbs 10:24B NKJV

“Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 NKJV

WHAT IS A HABIT?

IT IS A SMALL THING YOU DO DAILY WITH GOD’S HELP UNTIL IT BECOMES POWERFUL IN YOUR LIFE

“Then He said, “To what shall we liken the kingdom of God? Or with what parable shall we picture it? It is like a mustard seed which, when it is sown on the ground, is smaller than all the seeds on earth; but when it is sown, it grows up and becomes greater than all herbs, and shoots out large branches, so that the birds of the air may nest under its shade.”” Mark 4:30-32 NKJV

GRACE - Oct 20 & 21

DARING GRACE

“I thank my God always concerning you for the grace of God which was given to you by Christ Jesus…” 1 Corinthians 1:4 NKJV

CAN WE THANK GOD FOR HIS

SIMPLE GRACE ·       THE GRACE THAT SAVES US

CONSTANT GRACE ·       THE GRACE THAT SUSTAINS US

COMFORTING GRACE ·       THE GRACE THAT HEALS US

FEARLESS GRACE ·       THE GRACE THAT GIVES US BOLDNESS

SELFLESS GRACE ·       THE GRACE THAT THINKS OF OTHERS

DARING GRACE . ·       THE GRACE THAT MOTIVATES US TO STEP OUT OF OUR COMFORT ZONE TO SHARE GOD’S GRACE WITH OTHERS  

“And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus…” Ephesians 2:6-7 NIV

“And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.” Acts 4:33 NKJV

 THREE THINGS YOU CAN DO TO STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE

1)     STOP BEING AFRAID TO EMBARRASS YOURSELF

“For Christ's sake we are fools…” 1 Corinthians 4:10a GNT

2)     GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION TO START BEFORE YOU THINK YOUR READY

3)     HANG OUT WITH OTHER DARING PEOPLE  

HOW CAN I GROW IN DARING GRACE? 

1)     ASK GOD TO DEEPEN YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF HIS LOVE.

“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord…” 2 Peter 1:2 NKJV

“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge...” Ephesians 3:16-19a NIV

2)     STEP OUT IN FAITH AND LIVE ON MISSION.

“In the same way that you gave me a mission in the world, I give them a mission in the world.” John 17:18 MSG 

“I don’t care about my own life. The most important thing is that I complete my mission, the work that the Lord Jesus gave me—to tell people the Good News about God’s grace.” Acts 20:24 NCV 

“But before people can ask the Lord for help, they must believe in him; and before they can believe in him, they must hear about him; and for them to hear about the Lord, someone must tell them; and before someone can go and tell them, that person must be sent. It is written, “How beautiful is the person who comes to bring good news.” Romans 10:14-15 NCV

“So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 2 Corinthians 5:20 NLT 

3)     STEP OUT IN FAITH AND LIVE ADVENTUROUSLY.

“He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.” 2 Corinthians 5:15 NLT

“I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10b NKJV

 

 

GRACE - Oct 13 & 14

THE FIFTH FACET OF GOD’S GRACE IS SELFLESS GRACE

“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Philippians 2:3-4 NKJV

WHAT IS SELFLESS GRACE? THE GRACE THAT CAUSES ME…

  • TO THINK OF OTHERS

  • TO SERVE OTHERS

  • TO BE GENEROUS 

“And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us. So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you— see that you also excel in this grace of giving.” 2 Corinthians 8:1-7 NIV

FOUR BENEFITS OF GIVING

1)    GIVING BRINGS JOY IN MY TRAILS.

“In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity.” 2 Corinthians 8:2 NIV

“… remembering the words that the Lord Jesus himself said, ‘There is more happiness in giving than in receiving.’” Acts 20:35b GNB

  • Believe, believer and believing

  • Pray, prayer and praying

  • Love, lover and loving

  • Give, giver and giving

“…who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross.” Hebrews 12:2b NKJV 

2)    GIVING INCREASES THE FAVOR OF GOD IN MY LIFE.

“For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own…” 2 Corinthians 8:3 NIV

“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8 NKJV

 “The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:25 NLT

“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Luke 6:38 NIV

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” 2 Corinthians 9:6 NIV

3)    GIVING HELPS FREE ME FROM SELFISHNESS AND MATERIALISM.

“They urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us.” 2 Corinthians 8:4-5 NIV

“Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7 NIV

“Tell people who are rich at this time not to become egotistical and not to place their hope on their finances, which are uncertain. Instead, they need to hope in God, who richly provides everything for our enjoyment. Tell them to do good, to be rich in the good things they do, to be generous, and to share with others. When they do these things, they will save a treasure for themselves that is a good foundation for the future. That way they can take hold of what is truly life.” 1 Timothy 6:17-19 CEB

4)    GIVING HELPS BRING THE COMPLETION TO GOD’S GRACE.

“So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part.” 2 Corinthians 8:6 NIV

“As a result of your ministry, they will give glory to God. For your generosity to them and to all believers will prove that you are obedient to the Good News of Christ. And they will pray for you with deep affection because of the overflowing grace God has given to you. Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words!” 2 Corinthians 9:13-15 NLT

 “I am not commanding you to do this. But I am testing how genuine your love is by comparing it with the eagerness of the other churches. You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.” 2 Corinthians 8:8-9 NLT

“But generous people plan to do what is generous, and they stand firm in their generosity.” Isaiah 32:8 NLT

GRACE - Oct 6 & 7

EXPERIENCING GOD’S GRACE

WHAT IS FEARLESS GRACE?

““Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.” And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.” Acts 4:29-31 NKJV

"And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.” Acts 4:33 NKJV 

GREAT GRACE IS
A DIVINE INFLUENCE UPON MY HEART
PRODUCING A MANIFESTATION IN MY LIFE

HOW DOES GOD’S GRACE HELP MAKE US FEARLESS?  

1)    FEARLESS GRACE MOVES ME TO SEARCH OUT OTHERS.

“One day David asked, “Is anyone in Saul’s family still alive—anyone to whom I can show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?” He summoned a man named Ziba, who had been one of Saul’s servants. “Are you Ziba?” the king asked. “Yes sir, I am,” Ziba replied. The king then asked him, “Is anyone still alive from Saul’s family? If so, I want to show God’s kindness to them.” Ziba replied, “Yes, one of Jonathan’s sons is still alive. He is crippled in both feet.””
2 Samuel 9:1-3 NLT

FEAR CAN BE CRIPPLING

·      FEAR OF ABANDONMENT

·      FEAR OF BETRAYAL

·      FEAR OF ABUSE

·      FEAR OF SHAME

·      FEAR OF FAILURE

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:29-31 NIV

2)    FEARLESS GRACE GIVES ME THE BOLDNESS TO MAKE NEW FRIENDS.

““Where is he?” the king asked. “In Lo-debar,” Ziba told him, “at the home of Makir son of Ammiel.” So David sent for him and brought him from Makir’s home.” 2 Samuel 9:4-5 NLT

“A man who has friends must himself be friendly...” Proverbs 18:24a NKJV

“Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Philippians 2:4 NKJV

“Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another…”
Hebrews 10:24-25a NLT

3)    FEARLESS GRACES MAKES ME MORE GENEROUS.

““Don’t be afraid!” David said. “I intend to show kindness to you because of my promise to your father, Jonathan. I will give you all the property that once belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will eat here with me at the king’s table!” Mephibosheth bowed respectfully and exclaimed, “Who is your servant, that you should show such kindness to a dead dog like me?”” 2 Samuel 9:7-6 NLT

“But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you —see that you also excel in this grace of giving.”
2 Corinthians 8:7 NIV

“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.” 2 Corinthians 8:9 NIV

4)    FEARLESS GRACE MAKES ME MORE CAPABLE.

“Then the king summoned Saul’s servant Ziba and said, “I have given your master’s grandson everything that belonged to Saul and his family. You and your sons and servants are to farm the land for him to produce food for your master’s household. But Mephibosheth, your master’s grandson, will eat here at my table.” (Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.) Ziba replied, “Yes, my lord the king; I am your servant, and I will do all that you have commanded.” And from that time on, Mephibosheth ate regularly at David’s table, like one of the king’s own sons.” 2 Samuel 9:9-11 NLT

“For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.” 1 Corinthians 15:9-10 NIV

“Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:6-7 NKJV

GRACE - Sept 29 & 30

 

Week 1 Simple Grace: The grace that saves us

Week 2 Constant Grace: The grace that sustains us

Week 3 Comforting Grace: The grace that equips us

“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” James 1:2-4 (NLT)

1.     God is the source of my comfort. 

“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort.” 2 Corinthians 1:3

Source (noun)

  • anything or place from which something comes, arises, or is obtained

  • origin: the beginning or place of origin of a stream or river.

“God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.” Psalm 46:1 (NKJV)

2.     God is equipping me to comfort others.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV)

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Paul’s Concern for the Corinthians

“I have made a fool of myself, but you drove me to it. I ought to have been commended by you, for I am not in the least inferior to the “super-apostles,” even though I am nothing.” 2 Corinthians 12:11 

3.     Opposites attract.

 “Come near to God and he will come near to you…” James 4:8 (NIV)

“What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39