Abba, Father

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Have you experienced some wounds that are deep?
Trust your Abba, Father–His promises He’ll keep…

He redeems you from distress or any kind of destruction.
Look to Him and listen for His wisdom and instruction.

He’s stated that He’s numbered even the hairs upon your head.
He’ll give to you renewed hope as you seek to be Spirit-led.

With love and with compassion, He heals the brokenhearted;
His faithfulness to care for His children has never departed.

Cast all your care upon Him–then, you’ll have nothing to fear.
As you draw close to Him, He’s promised to also draw near.

God’s plans for you are of well-being, and not of things bad.
He’s your loving Abba, Father–the very best Dad!

P. A. Oltrogge

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” Psalm 34:18 NLT

“Every word of God is flawless; He is a shield to those who take refuge in him.” Proverbs 30:5 NIV

“For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us.” 2 Corinthians 1:20 NKJV

“But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all your works.” Psalm 73:28 NKJV

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you….” James 4:8 NKJV

“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God; that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:6-8 NKJV

“For I know the thoughts that I have toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13 NKJV

“Jesus said, ‘Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.’” Matthew 19:14 NIV

“And He said, ‘Abba, Father, all things are possible for You. Take this cup away from Me, nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will.'” words of Jesus to His Father in Mark 14:36 NKJV (His obedience to and trust of His Father’s plan brought us eternal life.)

“For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, ‘Abba, Father.'” Romans 8:15 NKJV

“Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, ‘Abba, Father.’” Galatians 4:6 NIV

“But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: Ye are of more value than many sparrows.” Luke 12:7 KJV

“Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and He saved them out of their distresses. He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! Let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare His works with rejoicing.” Psalm 107:19-22 NKJV

“Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the Lord.” Psalm 31:24 NKJV

“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:21-23 RSV

“…For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.” Romans 5:5 NLT

“For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 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 4:15-16 NKJV

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor, he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.”
words of Jesus Christ in Luke 4:17-19 KJV

Train Ride

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I was traveling on a train that had many stops it would be making…
but I knew my destination and which stop that I’d be taking.

I thought I’d ask the traveler next to me where he was going to go;
then, surprisingly, he said it wasn’t something he could know.

I thought that that was rather odd, for one needs to be quite sure,
for travelers can’t ride indefinitely on a never-ending tour.

I’d researched my destination, having heard it was a beautiful place;
but my fellow traveler’s plans were vague and uncertain in his case.

Eventually, he’d need to get off—there would come an end to the trail.
It reminded me of those who travel equally vaguely, but on a spiritual rail.

They think that any exit will get them to a final place of peace,
but they haven’t secured the ticket to where God’s love will never cease.

Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life…don’t travel until it’s too dark.
Secure your ticket by taking Him as Savior—then you’ll KNOW where you will disembark.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’” John 14:6 NKJV

“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” John 14:2 NKJV

For those who like to have a good book along to read on a journey,
the Holy Bible is the very top of the list. An inspiring one
also is Living a Life of Fire, the autobiography
of Reinhard Bonnke, bearer of good news to Africa and the world.
Available at http://www.christianbook.com or other book sources.

A Word of Encouragement

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“And He (Jesus) said to them, ‘What are these words that you are exchanging with one another as you are walking?’ And they stood still, looking sad. And one of them, named Cleopas, answered and said to Him, ‘Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem and unaware of the things which have happened here in these days?’” Luke 24:17-18

“And beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.” Luke 24:27 (NASB)

(from the account, after Jesus’ death and burial, of the walk to Emmaus by Cleopas and another, who met the risen Lord on their walk, verses 13-32)

There’s nothing like ENCOURAGEMENT when the way seems hard–
There’s nothing like its bolstering to keep a day (or life) from being scarred.

A word of praise can be depended upon to keep enthusiasm or creativity flowing,
causing a downcast countenance to be one that’s actually “glowing.”

There’s nothing like a caring friend who sends a note or gives a call.
There’s nothing like an encouraging word to keep us from a downfall.

There is an enemy in the world, who wants to ruin God-given potential,
which is why a word of praise from someone is often vital and essential.

Cleopas, while on the road to Emmaus, was talking with his friend
about the recent discouraging facts–on Christ’s life having come to an end.

Then later, when they were joined by Jesus, the Lord opened up their eyes
to the truth of His resurrection–likewise, we need the truth that God supplies.

Of course, the Lord is always there for us, speaking by His Spirit and His Word–but through friends or even strangers, He can also often be “heard.”

So, as you look around to start your day, be attentive if God is showing to you
someone who needs encouragement–let His supportive words be flowing through you.

P. A. Oltrogge

Like the wind that fills the sails of a boat, enabling it to glide upon the sea, a word of encouragement in our lives is so important to you and me.

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

“Yet in all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” Romans 8:31 and 37 (NKJV)

Painting/Robert Zund

Your Stronghold in Times of Trouble

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If a dream of your heart has fallen apart, and you can only see the rubble,
remember the Lord is a refuge for you and a stronghold in times of trouble.

Hold firmly to Christ, your Redeemer, who Himself was resurrected.
Regarding that which concerns you, God has promised it will be perfected.

As a Christian, you have a covenant with God, by the blood of His dear Son. Give the matter over to Him, in faith, knowing that His resurrection power has begun.

P. A. Oltrogge

“The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.”
Psalm 9:9 NIV

“The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, oh Lord, endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.” Psalm 138:8 NKJV

“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21 NKJV

“…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

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV

“The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you.” (the believer) from Romans 8:11 NLT

See God’s Words Despite the Circumstance

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“My son, give attention to My words;
Incline your ear to My sayings.
Do not let them depart from your eyes;
Keep them in the midst of your heart;
For they are life to those who find them,
And health to all their flesh.”
Proverbs 4:20-22
and all of chapter 4

When the devil says, “Can’t you see what has occurred?”
we can say, “I only see the promises in God’s Word.”

Yes, there are times when we must “see” through faith’s eye,
but we’re confident of our God–it’s impossible for Him to lie.

No matter the problem or how it came about,
we trust in God’s love and in His ability to work things out.

He’s faithful to keep His Word–its integrity is absolute.
There’s no Word of scripture that any person, or the devil, can ever refute.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For example, there was God’s promise to Abraham. Since there was no one greater to swear by, God took an oath in his own name, saying:

“’I will certainly bless you,
and I will multiply your descendants beyond number.’

“Then Abraham waited patiently, and he received what God had promised.

“Now when people take an oath, they call on someone greater than themselves to hold them to it. And without any question that oath is binding. God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind.

“So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal High Priest in the order of Melchizedek.”

Hebrews 6:13-20 NLT

“My eyes are awake through the night watches, that I may meditate on Your word.”

Psalm 119:148 NKJV

“Then the Lord said to me, ‘You have seen well, for I am ready to perform My word.'”

Jeremiah 1:12 NKJV

“Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not with corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever….”

1 Peter 1:22-23 NKJV

http://www.awmi.net for testimonies–
currently featured Vonya Currey,
and emphasis on the Word

“Believe Me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves.”
Spoken by Jesus in John 14:11 NKJV

Turn Your Losses Around

“But God’s free gift is not at all to be compared to the trespass…For if many died through one man’s falling away–his lapse, his offense–much more profusely did God’s grace and the free gift (that comes) through…Jesus Christ, abound and overflow to and for (the benefit of) many.”
(Romans 5:15 The Amplified Bible)

…written by Kenneth Copeland:

If you ever need someone to tell you how to turn things around, go to God. He’s an expert on the subject. He’s suffered more losses than anyone who’s ever lived.

Just think about it. He lost Lucifer, His top-ranked, most anointed angel. And He lost at least a third of His other angels as well when Lucifer fell. Then He lost the man and woman He had created; and because He’d given them dominion over the earth, when He lost them, He lost it too. Any way you figure it, that’s a lot of real estate down the drain!

Yet, in spite of all that, God is no loser. He’s the greatest winner of all time. Do you know why? Because He knows how to turn the losses around. He knows how to use the law of giving and receiving to transform losses into gains.

“Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over” (Luke 6:38).

Isn’t that staggering? He had every option that exists to choose from to redeem the things He’d lost. He had all wisdom and all power available to Him. Out of all that, the law of giving is what He chose to use.

He gave the most irreplaceable thing He had: His only Son. Then He backed that gift with His own faith. And when the law of giving and receiving had done its work, the Almighty Father God received not only His first begotten Son, but millions of other sons as well.

Don’t despair over your losses. Redeem them the same way God redeemed His. Give, and put the most powerful principle in the universe to work for you.

Scripture Reading: John 3:12-21

Reprinted with permission from Kenneth Copeland Ministries

From the book,
Faith to Faith (www.kcm.org)

An Awakening to Love

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Using scripture passages, such as that below, Pastor George Pearsons spoke on Sunday regarding the love and value we should always have for one another.
If you’d like, see http://www.emic.org for the entire service or scroll to the message.

Loving One Another

“Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

“God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

“Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.”

1 John 4:7-12 NLT

During Sunday’s service, a hymn from out of the Welsh revival of 1904, “Here is Love, Vast as the Ocean,” (William Rees) was sung at the end of the message by the worship team.

Here is love,
vast as the ocean…
lovingkindness as a flood,

when the Prince of Life,
our ransom,
shed for us His precious blood.

Who His love will not
remember? Who can cease
to sing His praise?

He can never be forgotten
throughout heaven’s
eternal days.

On the mount of crucifixion,
fountains opened
deep and wide.

Through the floodgates
of God’s mercy,
flowed a vast and gracious tide.

Grace and love,
like mighty rivers,
poured incessant from above,

and heaven’s peace and
perfect justice
kissed a guilty world, in love.

In Your truth, You will direct me
by Your Spirit,
through Your Word.

And Your grace, my need is meeting
as I trust in You,
my Lord.

Of Your fulness, You are pouring,
Your great love
and power on me,

without measure,
full and boundless,
drawing out my heart to Thee.

Consider the Birds and the Lilies

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Look at the birds of the air…
They don’t sow, reap, or gather
their needed food into barns,
but are dependent upon God, rather.

Consider how the lilies are clothed…
They toil not, nor do they spin,
but to the heavenly Father’s care
they’re blessed to give in.

Yes, consider these,
and consider giving in,
to the message of Christ’s love
above this world’s din.

Partake, through the Bible, from God’s table
of spiritual food fit for a King’s heir–
and be clothed in the love of Jesus,
the finest thing you could wear.

Consider the children,
so gentle and so tender.
What kind of faith
to them will you render?

One that speaks dislike
and contempt of others—
or one that speaks love
and draws all men to be brothers?

The heavenly Father gave Jesus
to tell of God’s care and to guide.
When we take Him as Savior, He gives love
for all others for whom He has died.

So just like the lilies
or the birds of the air,
may people of all nations be blessed to give in
to Jesus—the way to the Father God’s care.

P. A. Oltrogge

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“But I say to you who hear, love your enemies….” Luke 6:27

“And He said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment. And a second is like it. You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.’”
Matthew 22:37-40

“For this reason I say to you, do not be anxious for your life, as to what you shall eat, or what you shall drink, nor for your body, as to what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body than clothing?

“Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And which of you by being anxious, can add a single cubit to his life’s span? And why are you anxious about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory did not clothe himself like one of these.

“But if God so arrays the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more do so for you, O men of little faith? Do not be anxious then, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink’ or ‘With what shall we clothe ourselves?’ For all these things the Gentiles eagerly seek; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
Matthew 6:25-34

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

Out of the Ashes

The following was written some years ago but is certainly applicable today.
by Guest Contributor, J. Vetter

Only a year ago, a tornado swept through our town, and trees became missiles of destruction. They slammed against houses, fences and vehicles with an angry vengeance.

This morning I took the time to investigate the new walking trail that was built in our area. Joy crowded into my heart and it overflowed with gratitude as I recognized that the pathway had been created with the remains of those fallen trees. Then, at the end of the trail, the joy that I felt gave birth to overwhelming revelation of new life! There, amidst the trees, an outdoor chapel had been built. There was a simple wooden cross, a pulpit, and there were six wooden benches.

Even though no one was standing behind the pulpit, I heard a message spoken loudly and clearly into my spirit. It was “Never give up! Never give up!” In spite of what may look like devastation, God declares, “There will be new life – trust Me! Learn to expect the good, for I know how to bring it about. Take your eyes off the distraction of loss and begin to expect the beauty of renewal.”

The Lord has much to say about being one who overcomes. I personally believe it thrills God’s heart when we choose to allow Him to rebuild what has been devastated or broken. It may not look the same; but in fact, often it can be even better. I’m thinking, for example, of the times people have had a water pipe break or some other kind of flooding. At first, it’s just a mess, and not very many people start out being thankful. However, after the insurance company pays for new flooring and restoration, it’s easy to forget the sense of frustration about the incident.

If only we could always see a snapshot of the finished project! But wait…God has something to say about that–how about, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)

I remember reading about a woman whose son was severely injured. She was praying for his healing and happened to look up and out of her kitchen window and saw a vision of him riding his bike over the lawn. Time went by, and he was healed. One day, she actually saw that exact picture of him on his bike, just as she had seen in the earlier vision.

Many a person, when keeping faith in the Lord, has found that the loss of a job has yielded an even better one or a new situation that is more satisfying for them.

Sometimes, as in a personal experience of my own, a loss can be very hard–the loss of a precious loved one. Yet, I can give thanks for having had the joy of having known and loved that one, knowing the comfort that he is with Jesus; and I have found peace through Him, which passes all understanding.

If difficulties strike, I believe we can keep our hearts from being overwhelmed. In Psalms we read, “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.” (Psalm 61:2) From the vantage point of that “Rock,” our Lord Jesus Christ, we are able to rise above any negative circumstance.

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All’s Right with my World

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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 conquerors through Him who loved us.”
Romans 8:37 NKJV

“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters….Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” Psalm 23:1, 2, and 6 NASB

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee; because he trusteth in Thee.” Isaiah 26:3 KJV

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