On the Porch of the Lord

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A place of refreshment, the porch of the Lord…
Pull up a chair, take in spiritual air.
Jesus always has time, and His is the power–
Receive there His touch in this end-time hour.
Like Mary, take time to sit at His feet;
Come to His porch for relief from life’s heat.
Only one thing is needful and truly can please–
His Word and His presence, felt on each breeze.
He offers living water, quenching everyone’s thirst;
And that’s yours there daily, by seeking Him first.
There’s joy on His porch, with your sisters and brothers,
As you find your needs met while caring about others.
The healing and peace which only Christ can bring
Are found there at all times—an everlasting spring.
Taste there His love, so generously poured;
Your “cup will run over” on the porch of the Lord.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, ‘Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.’ And Jesus answered and said to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things; But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.'” Luke 10:38-42 NKJV

“But one thing is needful…” verse 42, KJV

A Glorious Choice

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First Easter by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

First Easter by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

Jesus Christ of Nazareth had taken His destined place
On a cruel cross upon a hill–for the task He’d been born to face.
His sinless life had made Him the chosen Lamb of God–
Though now He sits at God’s right hand and bears a Shepherd’s rod.
Three days after Christ’s burial, and just at the brink of dawn,
Some, in love, had come to the tomb and had found that His body was gone.
But the pain of their grief concerning His death had then given way
To amazing angelic tidings on that glorious Resurrection day!
Jesus, the Man on the center cross, on the hill of crucifixion had been
The focus of God’s judgement upon all of mankind’s sin.
But now, with joy, the angels reminded that just as He had said,
Jesus, God’s Son, had risen in victory, up from the dead!
His Father’s gracious plan of redemption for all people had been met;
And all of their faults or sins, a holy God could now forget!
There’s just one requirement remaining; and it’s your choice–
To believe in your heart He’s Savior, and confess it with your voice.
Angels rejoice in heaven over one sinner who’ll repent,
And put their faith in Jesus Christ–the One Whom God has sent.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
Romans 10:10 (New King James)

“In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
Luke 15:10 (New American Standard)

“For He says: ‘In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped you.’ Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”
2 Corinthians 6:2 (New King James)

“Therefore, I will divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong, because He poured out His soul unto death, and He was numbered with the transgressors, and He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”
Isaiah 53:12 (New King James)

Resurrection references: Matthew 28; Mark 16; Luke 24; John 20

Christ and the Rich Young Ruler

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Christ and the Rich Young Ruler by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

Christ and the Rich Young Ruler by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

A rich young ruler, with eternal concerns, made a mental list–
Then sought out Christ to see if there was anything he’d missed.
In contemplating heaven, he hoped he’d done God’s will
By following His laws, from his youth, but wondered still.

He addressed Christ as a good teacher, but didn’t realize
That Christ wasn’t just a good teacher, but God before his very eyes.
He asked the Lord what he could do to aid him on eternity’s quest,
And Jesus confirmed that to keep the commandments is best.

The young man replied he’d done that from as early as he could recall–
Then Jesus told him of his need to follow Him and surrender all.
His wealth and possessions had become too strong of a hold
And kept him from seeing the purity of God’s desires–true gold.

With sadness, the ruler left because he couldn’t see the reward.
He hadn’t yet grasped the higher life offered through Christ, the Lord.
You see, making Christ your Lord doesn’t actually cost–in fact, it pays,
With dividends of God’s blessings throughout all your days.

The greatest blessing of all is getting to know God as you should–
A loving heavenly Father whose care and plans for you are good.
Then, committing your life and resources, in faith, as He leads
Will help you to reach exactly those He knows of who have needs.

God knows that when possessions become your highest treasure,
You’ll fail to find the things that He knows are of greater measure.
Christ looks for our faith and love for Him and where our loyalty lies;
Let’s not fail to see that investment in His Kingdom is certainly wise.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now behold, one came and said to him, ‘Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?’ So He said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But, if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.’ He said to Him, ‘Which ones?’ Jesus said, ‘You shall not murder; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; honor your father and your mother; and you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ The young man said to him, ‘All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?’ Jesus said to him, ‘If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.’ But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.”

Matthew 19:16-22 (New King James)

A Father’s Love

The Prodigal Son, a parable Jesus told….

Once there was a man who had two sons fully grown,
and the younger asked for his inheritance to go off on his own.
So the father divided his wealth and the younger son went away,
while the older one was loyal to his father and knew that he would stay.

In a distant land, the younger squandered all of his part of the estate.
He lived in a wild and unwise manner, and poverty became his fate.
A famine occurred in that country, and he couldn’t get ahead;
he was hired to take care of swine and longed to eat what they were fed.

At that time, he came to his senses and remembered his father’s care–
even his father’s servants had always had meals that were generous fare.
So he thought out what he would say about the restoration he desired.
“I’m no longer worthy to be my father’s son–I’ll just ask to be one who’s hired.”

He then traveled back to his home, and the father saw him when still far away–
then ran to embrace and kiss him, before even hearing what he had to say.
The son repented of all he’d done, telling all that had been on his mind;
and there he found compassion and a heart that was only kind.

The father called to his servants to clothe the young man with all of the best–
the best robe, ring, and sandals—even with a banquet, he’d be blessed.
A celebration was called for everyone, for this was a time to rejoice!
But out in the fields, the older son stopped, having heard his father’s voice.

At the sound of the merriment, he inquired of the servants of what had just transpired. They told him that his brother was home, and that a celebration was what his father desired. He became angry then and wasn’t willing to even go inside, but his father came out to entreat him–he wanted him to be alongside.

The older son said, “…For so many years I’ve been serving you, and I’ve never neglected a command….” He complained that he felt what his brother deserved was his father’s reprimand. “My child, you have always been with me, and all that is mine is yours,” the father said. But they needed to rejoice for this son now lived. “This brother of yours was dead–

He was lost and has been found,” he said–much like a Shepherd rejoices to find
a lost sheep that had strayed far from the fold but had always remained on His mind.

P. A. Oltrogge

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From Luke 15:11-32
“I am the good shepherd and I know My own, and My own know Me, even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father, and I lay down My life for the sheep.” words of Jesus in John 10:14-15

Ascended with Christ

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We praise You, Lord Jesus, and push away any gloom,
for You are the Victorious One who was raised from the tomb.

You give hope that’s not wishful thinking but is joyful expectation.
We’re more than conquerors always because of Your dedication.

You’re seated at the Father’s right hand—the place that was due
to the One who was so obedient to Him—He calls You Faithful and True.

We’re “above” any circumstances, not “under,” because Your power
and the name of the Lord Jesus is our shelter and strong tower.

P. A. Oltrogge

“But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come, He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” Ephesians 2:4-7

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy, He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ….” 1 Peter 1:3 (NIV)

“But in all these things, we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.”
Romans 8:37

“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.”
2 Corinthians 2:14

“…we have such a high priest, who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the majesty in the heavens, a minister in the sanctuary and in the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, not man.” Hebrews 8:1

“(The Coming of Christ) And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war.” Revelation 19:11

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous runs into it and is safe.” Proverbs 18:10

Scriptures NASB

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Photos/Unsplash

Living in Expectancy

Contemplating further the theme of this poem, you would be blessed to view the message, “Increasing the Level of Your Expectancy” at http://www.jerrysavelle.org
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“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16 NKJV

Dear Father in Heaven,

You’ve told us that we should be bold in coming to Your throne of grace;
so, Father, as Your child, I come boldly to that place.

Jesus taught us to pray, and we thank You for our daily bread;
yet there’s something I’d like to add for the hours in the day ahead…

“Give us this day our daily”…miracles, is that for which I ask.
You’re a miracle-working God; I know You’re more than up to the task!

“On earth as it is in heaven,” is prayed for Your will to be done,
which is an appeal to see Your goodness, as stated perfectly by Your Son.

I wonder if a day went by, when Jesus was ministering on earth as a man,
where His disciples didn’t see the miraculous within the day’s span.

If so, it might have been because of a lack of faith to expect.
To be expectant of daily miracles, is something I shouldn’t neglect.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits, The God of our salvation! Selah” Psalm 68:19 NKJV

Matthew 6:8-13 The Lord’s Prayer

“There are only two ways you can live: by faith or by sight.”
Quote/Keith Moore

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Triumphant Hope in Jesus

“In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:6, 7

“Now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now we know in part, but then I shall know fully, just as I also have been fully known.” 1 Corinthians 13:12

(A poem on renewal of hope after experiencing loss or a setback to faith.)

You came through difficult days–at times you felt vulnerable and disappointed.
But, remember, you’re a child of God, and you’re still very much anointed.

Philippians 4:13 says you can do all things you’re called to do–
Just keep your eyes fixed on Jesus–that’s Hebrews 12:2.

God is totally for you–His Word has made it clear.
Don’t let past adversities cause you to doubt or fear.

We don’t fight against flesh and blood, but it’s a spiritual battle we wage;
Holding fast to your confidence is vital–it’s not time to disengage.

“Onward Christian soldiers, marching as to war,
With the cross of Jesus going on before.”

That’s an old familiar hymn sung down through the years;
And you have carried on so bravely, though sometimes there were tears.

As you continue in God’s Word, it will be a lamp unto your feet
And a light unto your path, bringing fellowship that’s sweet.

In studying the Bible, you’ve come to understand
That all that is good is from the Father’s hand.

Jesus went about healing, showing the Father’s true heart.
He commanded the waves to be calm and the winds to depart.

The Old Testament account of Joseph tells of much that he withstood;
But from what was meant for evil, God brought forth only good.

So keep listening to the Holy Spirit and using God’s Word as you pray;
It’s the trustworthy sword of our armor–don’t let the enemy have any other say.

Plead the blood of Jesus…For our well-being, He was scarred;
Stay strong in your precious faith in His Word, knowing it will guard.

A beautiful chapter of promise is Psalm ninety-one;
We can claim it at each daybreak and even when the day is done.

Surely, you’ve gone through a hard place; but you’ll find by remaining bold
And confident in the Lord, Jesus Christ, your faith will be greater than gold.

“In the world you have tribulation, but…I have overcome the world,” Jesus said.
Stand firm in that truth and you will find that God has wonderful things still ahead.

P. A. Oltrogge

“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

“Therefore, everyone who hears these words of Mine; and acts upon them, may be compared to a wise man, who built his house upon the rock. And the rain descended, and the floods came; and the winds blew, and burst against the house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded upon the rock.” Matthew 7:24, 25

“…rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer.” Romans 12:12

“This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.” Hebrews 6:19-20

“Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation, or shifting shadow.” James 1:17

“Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God, who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge.” 2 Corinthians 1:21-22

“But thanks be to God who always leads us in His triumph in Christ….”
2 Corinthians 2:14

Psalm 91 (entire Psalm)

“that being justified by His grace, we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:7

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Breakthrough over the Blues

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Photo/Porch of the Lord

Perhaps you’ve experienced disappointments…
I know that others and I have, too.
But when I recall precious moments I’ve had,
I can no longer stay feeling blue.

Realize this old world with its trials
can’t keep you from all that delights.
Disappointments may occur, but some very nice gifts
will come through from the Father of lights.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” James 1:17 KJV

On Any Night or Day…

Before reading this poem, “God is Good, All the Time,” I want to recommend a most encouraging true account told in the book, Healed Overnight by Amy Keesee Freudiger. You can read an overview of her book when you visit Amy’s website at http://www.HealedOvernight.com

God is Good, All the Time

…from Luke 13:10-17

In this account, Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues; and it was on a Sabbath day.

A woman was there who, for eighteen years, had had a sickness caused by a spirit—she was bound by Satan that way.

She was bent double and was totally unable to straighten up at all.

But she made her way over to Jesus, upon His invitation and call.

“Woman, you are freed from your sickness,” He said, laying His hands upon her—immediately she became erect.

She began to glorify God that Jesus’ ministry had had such a powerful effect!

But due to rigid adherence to the Torah, a synagogue official could only “see” the Law.

Jesus should not have healed on the Sabbath, he indicated. All he could see was this “flaw.”

In the face of such a miracle, he still, obviously, wasn’t persuaded.

His only desire seemed to be that Jesus’ act of love should be degraded.

Jesus then called him a hypocrite, saying that he, and the other synagogue officials, would untie their own oxen or donkeys on the Sabbath to lead them to some waters.

How much more, then, was it right for Him to heal, even though on a Sabbath, this woman, who was one of Abraham’s daughters.

After Jesus had said these things, his opponents were put to shame…

while, for the glorious things He was doing for others, the people were giving Him great acclaim.

As believers, we, too, are heirs of Abraham; and on any night or day…

the Lord, who never slumbers or sleeps, will hear and answer us whenever we pray.

P. A. Oltrogge

“And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.” Galatians 3:29 NASB

“…He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” Psalm 121:3-4 NASB

 

The One Who Sent Jesus

When you believe in Jesus Christ and have settled that He’s the God who is true, you will not simply be believing in Him, but in the One who has sent Him, too. Jesus came into the world as God’s Light, so that darkness would be dispelled–that none should miss knowing their God, nor have their salvation withheld.

God desires to be a loving Father to all, but His justness will require judgment one day; Jesus did not come to judge but to save, and to teach us to be followers of His Way. All Jesus ever said or that He did, were things only from His Father that He’d heard. A blessed life now and eternally are the gifts of which a Christian can be assured.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Jesus shouted to the crowds, ‘If you trust me, you are trusting not only me, but also God who sent me. For when you see me, you are seeing the one who sent me. I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark. I will not judge those who hear me but don’t obey me, for I have come to save the world and not to judge it. But all who reject me and my message will be judged on the day of judgment by the truth I have spoken. I don’t speak on my own authority. The Father who sent me has commanded me what to say and how to say it. And I know His commands lead to eternal life; so I say whatever the Father tells Me to say.’” John 12:44-50 (NLT)

“Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and He will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for Him.” Hebrews 9:27-28 (NIV)

“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.” John 5:24 (NKJV)

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (NASB)

“Philip said to Him, ‘Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.’” John 14:8-10 (NKJV)

Even in this, Jesus said, ”Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.” Luke 6:22-23 KJV

Photo by Porch of the Lord

To Pray and not to Faint…

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Photo by Porch of the Lord…
Sunset at the Pitons Anchorage, St. Lucia,
Caribbean

“And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint…” Luke 18:1 KJV

“Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart…” NASB

Thoughts from a guest contributor:

Pray always without being weary. Do not stop or give up. Do pray, even when you feel tired from or distressed about a problem. Do pray when you wake up or before you fall asleep.

Keep praying, always looking for the Holy Spirit in action all day. Keep God on your heart and thank Him throughout your day.

Receive the Lord’s Peace

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Are you facing difficult problems which seem insurmountable at length?
Then it’s time to agree with God that, “The joy of the Lord is my strength.”

You may not, initially, feel joy and strength when you’re first confessing it,
but this affirmation can build in your life as the Lord Himself is blessing it.

And, “Peace be with you,” were the words that the risen Savior said
when He amazingly appeared to His disciples after His resurrection from the dead.

In His message of the beatitudes, Jesus listed ways that we can be blessed.
Therefore, be a peacemaker, even to yourself…and, in Jesus Christ, find rest.

P. A. Oltrogge

“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

“…Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” Matthew 5:9

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28

“Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’” John 20:19

“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27

“…But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.” 1 Samuel 30:6

Scriptures NKJV