Picture Jesus

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“…keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.”
from Hebrews 12:1-2 NLT

In peace or in a storm, picture the Lord…
If “walking on water,” keep your eyes toward
the Master who is out there, encouraging you to “Come.”
He’s the author of our faith–where it is from.
He’s the perfector or finisher of our faith, too.
If you feel your faith falter, He will yet see you through.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary.

Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, ‘It is a ghost!’ And they cried out for fear.

But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.’

And Peter answered Him and said, ‘Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.’

So He said, “Come.’ And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid, and began to sink. He cried out, saying, ‘Lord, save me!’ And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, ‘O you of little faith, why did you doubt?’ And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.

Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him, saying, ‘Truly You are the Son of God.'”

Matthew 14:22-33 NKJV

“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” Romans 12:3 KJV

“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17 NKJV

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14 NKJV

“…looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith….”
from Hebrews 12:1-2 NKJV

Though Peter’s faith had faltered and his Lord he’d denied,
he ultimately came to the place where all doubt was defied.

“Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6 NKJV

Breakthrough Over Blues

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

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Photo by Porch of the Lord

Opportunity to grow in faith at Southwest Believer’s Convention this week at http://www.bvovn.com. “So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17 KJV

Heritage of Protection

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Conservatory Photos by Porch of the Lord

Like having a protective “umbrella” over my head,
You guard me, Lord, as I’m being spirit-led.
You’ve given me this heritage, for I reverence Your name.
Thank You for protection, one of the benefits I can claim.

P. A. Oltrogge

“From the end of the earth, I will cry to You,
When my heart is overwhelmed;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I.

You have been a shelter for me,
a strong tower from the enemy.
I will abide in Your tabernacle forever;
I will trust in the shelter of Your wings. Selah

For you, O God, have heard my vows;
You have given me the heritage of those who fear your name…”

Psalm 61:2-5 NKJV

“But whoever listens to me will dwell safely, and will be secure, without fear of evil.”
Proverbs 1:33

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.”
Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT

“My people will dwell in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.” Isaiah 32:18

“I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.” Psalm 18:3 KJV

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.” Psalm 103:2

Psalm 68:19
Psalm 116:12
Psalm 23
Psalm 91

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His Tender Mercies are Over You

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Conservatory Photo by Porch of the Lord

“The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.” Psalm 145:9 KJV

“Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; he crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies.” Psalm 103:4 KJV

“Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies and thy lovingkindnesses; for they have been ever of old.” Psalm 25:6 KJV

And Jesus demonstrated that tender mercy during His life and ministry and still does so today.

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” Hebrews 13:8 NKJV

Expectation

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Caribbean Photo by Porch of the Lord

Recently, I heard a minister express an important thought–
which was that storms don’t last forever but eventually come to nought.

So if you’ve been walking through a storm, be encouraged by what he said.
As you continue to walk by faith, expect a rainbow to come out instead.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. And while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.” Romans 5:1-6 NASB

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in His holy people, and His incomparably great power for us who believe.”

“That power is the same as the mighty strength He exerted when He raised Christ from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under His feet and appointed Him to be head over everything for the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills everything in every way.” Ephesians 1:18-23 NIV

the name of Jesus…like the fragrance after rain…

Meditation

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Photo by Porch of the Lord

God has given us instruction that’s meant to keep us from being uptight,
which is to meditate upon His Word throughout the day and night.

If you find you’re feeling troubled, with thoughts that need to be curbed,
think, instead, upon His promises, so your peace won’t be disturbed.

Just as Jesus immediately encouraged Jairus when others said his daughter had died, we need to immediately hear His voice–over ones which say victory’s been denied.

People, thoughts, and what is felt and seen may “say” otherwise than what is said in God’s Word. If we’ve meditated upon it, however, other voices won’t discourage what, through God, we’ve already heard.

P. A. Oltrogge

“How blessed is the man…(whose) delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night.” (from Psalm 1:1-3 NASB)

“Great peace have they which love Thy law: and nothing shall offend them.” Psalm 119:165 KJV

“While He (Jesus) was still speaking, they came from the house of the synagogue official (Jairus), saying, ‘Your daughter has died, why trouble the Teacher anymore?’ But Jesus, overhearing what was being spoken, said to the synagogue official, ‘Do not be afraid any longer, only believe.'” (from Mark 5: 21-24 and 35-43 NASB)
(…and Jesus went on to the home of Jairus and raised his daughter up.)

“…and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to Him!'” (from Matthew 17:1-8 NASB)

Nothing Halfway

Our Lord Jesus doesn’t do things for us in a manner that’s halfway.
We need to keep that in mind in regard to that for which we pray.

Just as He provided Peter with a net-breaking, miraculous catch,
or made a few fish and loaves into an enough-for-a-multitude batch…

and as He healed the blind man who first saw men as trees that were moving,
Jesus went on to heal the man’s sight totally, His “completion” power proving.

Still today, He’s with us always, not doing things by half-measure;
but He desires to see us whole, for that’s always His will and pleasure.

And for any kind of “answer to prayer” that doesn’t seem quite right,
we wait upon the Lord for His very best, for His is the power and might.

Remember the wedding banquet, where the best wine served was the last.
It was Jesus’ miraculous touch that caused the first wine to be outclassed.

Let’s be assured He will answer our prayers in a way that’s truly complete,
thereby displaying to all, once again, that Jesus secured the devil’s defeat.

P. A. Oltrogge

See Mark 8 for the feeding of thousands and the instance of the blind man receiving full sight.

“But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:8 NLT

“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you with all joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ….” Philippians 1:3-6 NKJV

And Jesus’ words on the cross, “It is finished!” were words of completion of the will of God and His Father’s calling upon His life.

“But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it. In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” Romans 8:25-27 NASB

For more on praying in the spirit: http://www.awmi.net
Look for teaching articles on the Holy Spirit

A Psalm to Take to Heart

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Photo by Porch of the Lord

Psalm 91 NASB

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most high will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!”

For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper, and from the deadly pestilence.

He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.

You will not be afraid of the terror by night, or of the arrow that flies by day;

Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness, or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.

A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not approach you.

You will only look on with your eyes, and see the recompense of the wicked.

For you have made the Lord, my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place.

No evil will befall you, nor will any plague come near your tent.

For He will give His angels charge concerning you, to guard you in all your ways.

They will bear you up in their hands, lest you strike your foot against a stone.

You will tread upon the lion and cobra, the young lion and the serpent you will trample down,

“Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name.

“He will call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him, and honor him.

“With a long life I will satisfy him, and let him behold My salvation.”

The Power and Authority of the Creator in the Name of Jesus

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“God, who at sundry times and in divers manners,
spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son,
whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person,
and upholding all things by the word of his power,
when he had by himself purged our sins,
sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high:
Being made so much better than the angels,
as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.”
Hebrews 1:1-4 KJV

How impressive and powerful are these words that we read about God’s Son, who has been “appointed heir of all things,” and “by whom” God’s creation of the worlds was done!

How awesome to think that Jesus is the brightness or reflection of God, the Father’s, glory–and that He is His express image, as was demonstrated in many a true Biblical story.

He upholds all things by the word of His power, yet He humbled Himself to purge us of sin. Then He “sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.” Thus, it’s through faith in Jesus that we win.

Being made so much better than the angels, the greatness of His Name is inherited from the Father, a Name more excellent than theirs. And it’s every believer’s inherited right to use the Name of Jesus, to receive answers to their prayers.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 NKJV

Written after reading a devotional on this topic by Kenneth E. Hagin, founder of Rhema Bible College, Tulsa, OK