And Nicodemus Came Also

The Porch of the Lord

“Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Him by night and said to Him, ‘Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.’ Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ Nicodemus said to Him, ‘How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?’ Jesus answered, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit…

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The Blessing of the Animals

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Photo by Porch of the Lord

In this world of great variety, the Lord’s signature is made very plain,
from the spots upon a leopard to a majestic horse’s mane.
He made many creatures to live on land, while others need the seas.
Some soar high into the skies, but seek to nestle in the trees.

Many animals need a caretaker and a home on ranch or farm–
cattle or sheep, as examples, need protection from outside harm.
They’re among God’s provisions for man, and there’s also the ocean store.
Fishermen find their livelihoods there, off of any good coast or shore.

And getting a glance of sea creations, like the dolphins or the whales,
is a rewarding sight to be appreciated on an outing in a boat that sails.
Children are eager to tell you of their enjoyment of the animals at a zoo–
elephants, giraffes, lions, zebras, monkeys, and bears–just to name a few.

Horses largely have been tamed, but have run wild upon some plains.
Many a man, woman, or youth has loved holding a horse’s reins.
Some people still need and appreciate them for the work they can perform,
while others love to race them and see their ability to “outperform.”

Dogs of a great many varieties are true companions, or work as aides
to people who have special needs, and to police, fire, or military brigades.
Down through the years there have been stories that often can astound
of a dog’s relationship with its master and how their love and loyalty abound.

Kittens are enjoyed, especially, by children who love to watch them play.
Cats are company, as well, with their own distinct character and way.
Then there are the smaller things, like the bees, bugs, or butterflies–
Beauty is in their fine details, and the study of them can be wise.

Those who love the animals may be fond of one particular kind,
or they may be the type who likes almost any animal that comes to mind.
So greatly we appreciate all the many creatures that we know–
It’s hard to think that there’s just one to call God’s “Best of Show.”

P. A. Oltrogge

“A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast….” Proverbs 12:10 KJV

“The righteous care for the needs of their animals….”. (NIV)

In Him, we are strong…

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Photo by Porch of the Lord

A cross that’s fashioned of gems will remind
of Jesus, God’s “gem,” who died for mankind.

He was the Light of the world, yet was crucified.
We, too, become lights when in Him we abide.

The sparkle of light from a jeweled cross
speaks of light and life gained and not of loss.

For Christ’s death on the cross, as His Father planned,
became victory, by the Savior seated at God’s right hand.

At the cross, Satan was conquered–a soundly defeated foe.
This is shining light and truth from the cross’s glow.

In Jesus Christ, we’re strong and have good news to tell.
We thank you, Lord, for victory won over darkness and hell.

Eternal life is ours, and you showed us how to live–
a life turned to thoughts of others and a life where we always forgive.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen”

Matthew 6:9-13

Ephesians 1:18-23
Ephesians 2:4-10
Or see archived post,
“Seated in the Heavenly Places”

Jesus and New Realities

The Life Project

Matthew 10:32-42

As Jesus wraps up His instructions to His disciples before sending them on their mission to bring in the harvest, He moves into some disturbing territory. Remember that He has just told them of the opposition they will face, and given them some comfort using the lowly sparrow as an example; now He sums up the point He has made:

Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven. (10:32-33)

I have a suspicion that these words were ringing in Peter’s head on that fateful night when He denied knowing Jesus not once, but three times, as they might ring in our minds from time to time. The disciples are being sent out to preach the Kingdom and Jesus; there will be pressure to keep quiet, and…

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All’s right with my world…

The Porch of the Lord

Photo by Nicoles Raymond Photo by Nicoles Raymond All’s right with my world, my life every day
because You are in it, dear Lord, to stay.

When storms crash around me, I command them to cease;
and if faith takes some battering, I still have your peace.

Whatever the circumstances, I count it all joy;
I’m more than a conqueror whom this world can’t destroy.

The blessing of God is mine now and forever;
I’m secure in a covenant that cannot be severed.

The Lord is my Shepherd, the pastures are green–
With my mind stayed on Jesus, my life is serene.

P. A. Oltrogge

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:2-4 NKJV

“Yet in all these things we are more than…

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Your Harvest in Due Season

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Pixabay

If you’re experiencing a problem that’s keeping you from sleep,

remember, then, God’s promises, so trustworthy and deep.

In following the Lord, if you faint not, in due season you’ll reap

from the seed of God’s Word planted in your heart, a harvest that’s steep.

P. A. Oltrogge

“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap if we faint not.”  Galatians 6:9 KJV

“It is the blessing of the Lord that makes rich, and He adds no sorrow to it.” Proverbs 10:22 NASB

Biblical advice from Kenneth and Gloria Copeland…Let the Word enter your ears, keep your eyes upon it, let it go into your heart and out of your mouth.  www.kcm.org

Also:
http://www.jerrysavelle.org

I Was Wondering

The truth is…wondering is wavering…

Instead, God’s Word be favoring.

Then, when you’re no longer wavering,

your victory you’ll be savoring.

For in favoring God’s Word over wondering,

we prevent the enemy from plundering

that which God has already sent our way.

God is watching over His Word to perform it each day.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Then the Lord said to him, ‘You have seen well, for I am watching over My word to perform it.'” Jeremiah 1:12 NASB

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.” James 1:5-7 KJV

“But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples were saying to him, ‘We have seen the Lord!’ But he said to them, ‘Unless I see in His hands the imprint of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.'”

“After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ Then He said to Thomas, ‘Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believe.’ Thomas answered and said to Him, ‘My Lord and My God!’ Jesus said to him, ‘Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.'” John 20:24-29 NASB

“Jesus said to him, ‘All things are possible to him who believes.’ Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, ‘Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!'” Mark 9:23-24 NKJV

“…But the just shall live by his faith.'” Habakkuk 2:4 NKJV

“For in it (the Gospel of Christ) the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, the just shall live by faith.'” Romans 1:17 NKJV

“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23 NKJV

“…according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him.” Ephesians 3:11-12

Encouraging teaching/testimonies at:
http://www.awmi.net

Have the Heart of Ruth…

The Porch of the Lord

We read in the Bible that Ruth, of Moab, had a loyal and loving heart.
So upon the death of her Hebrew husband, she felt that she couldn’t part
from Naomi, her beloved mother-in-law, who had urged her to make her way
back to Ruth’s own parent’s home; but, instead, Ruth begged to stay.

She shared her heart, stating that where Naomi went, so, in fact, would she;
where she lodged and the God she worshiped–these would also be
what she desired for her own particular life, even to her day of dying.
To stay with her late husband’s “family” was the future on which she was relying.

Naomi allowed Ruth, then, to go with her on her Bethlehem-Judah return;
there Ruth would find a special blessing that only God could have discerned.
For there was a kinsman-redeemer through Naomi’s husband’s line,
whom Ruth would meet, while gleaning in his…

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Be Rich Towards God

The Porch of the Lord

Photo by B. Oltrogge Photo by B. Oltrogge

Please, dear friend, be rich towards God, thinking not only of your own pursuits; But think about turning your heart to Christ and others, putting down good spiritual roots. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, but forfeits his own soul? Helping others spiritually and in tangible ways is God’s plan, in which we’re all to have a role.

Have you spoken to Jesus in a personal way today, or do you just run out to meet the day? A relationship with Him makes a difference for the better–it’s wise to take time to pray. One day Jesus will be coming back in glory and will repay His saints for selfless deeds. Not only for that reason, but for the joy that’s returned, ask Him to show you another’s needs.

God’s not against your having enjoyment of certain things…
But doesn’t…

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Is Anything Too Hard For God?

The Porch of the Lord

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:29-30

Since Jesus said His yoke is easy and that His burden is light,
I shouldn’t let things that seem worrisome keep me up in the night.

I need to cast on Jesus all of my worries and cares instead,
for He lovingly said that He has numbered the very hairs of my head.

If I’m worrying, I am saying that God isn’t really big enough
to handle or resolve problems that, to my mind, seem so tough.

Can’t He who created your own brain know better what to do?
Consider that and believe that it’s His ability that will see you through.

Why not fully release to God the things that you’ve prayed…

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