Finances

‘You cannot serve both God and money.’ Mathew 6:24 NIV Money is one of the things that can cause problems. If handled well, it’s useful forus living our lives and helping others. But when we get into debt, rely on retail therapy to feel better, feel like our value depends on our salary, or simply just love money rather than God, we can end up living in an ungodly way. God never says that we shouldn’t have money, and that we shouldn’t spend it, but the Bible does give us some guidelines to help us be godly stewards of our finances. Saving money is a great,…

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How it all ends

‘They shall see his face…they shall reign forever and ever.’ Revelation 22:4-5 In order to know how a story ends, we must read the last chapter. In Revelation 22, the final chapter of the Bible, we’re told what will be enjoyed by every saved child of God. First, we ‘shall see His face.’ One of the greatest joys of heaven is that we’ll see the face of Jesus, the One we love most. The Bible says: ‘Now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we…

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Listen carefully

‘Are you listening…Really listening?’ Mark 4:9 MSG How often do we really listen to others? How often do we listen in order to understand rather than remember? How often do we listen just so we can reply? How often do we say that we’re going to spend more time listening to the people in our life who matter? We need to start listening carefully to others. But how? If we want to be great at listening, there are three things we can start doing: 1) Look directly at the speaker. When someone’s talking to us we need to give them our full attention. We…

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Grace produces Godliness

‘Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?’ Romans 6:1 NIV When we don’t understand grace fully, we can be tempted to think that it means we can do whatever we want. We can act how we’ve always acted because by God’s grace we’ll be forgiven and we’re already saved. But like the Bible says: ‘Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?’ (vv.1-2 NIV). God’s grace is a gift that has saved us. He loves us so much that He wanted to…

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God’s correction

‘The LORD corrects those he loves.’ Proverbs 3:12 NVC None of us like being corrected. We all like to be right, and to have someone correct us can make us feel uncomfortable and even angry. The Bible says: ‘My child, do not reject the Lord’s discipline, and don’t get angry when he corrects you. The Lord corrects those he loves, just as parents correct the child they delight in’ (Proverbs 3:11-12 NCV). When God corrects us, we should welcome it rather than despise it. It’s never a nice experience to be corrected, but we need to see the bigger picture. Correction from God isn’t punishment or criticism, it’s…

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Let God in

‘The crowd began pleading with Jesus to…leave them alone.’ Mark 5:17 NLT The Bible says when ‘those who had seen what happened told the others about the demon-possessed man and the pigs…the crowd began pleading with Jesus to…leave them alone’ (vv. 16-17 NLT). They had just witnessed an astounding miracle, yet here they were ‘pleading with Jesus to…leave them alone’. Maybe they were afraid He’d interfere with their work, like He did with the owner of the pigs. Or they thought He was so powerful and unpredictable they didn’t want Him messing with their lives. Either way, they wanted no part of what Jesus…

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Promises

‘Your faith in God has become known everywhere…how you turned…from idols to serve…God.’ 1 Thessalonians 1:8-9 NIV When God truly turns us around, His Spirit lives in us. When that happens, we begin to see things differently. We’ll begin to notice things that we didn’t before. Our heart will start to be broken for the things that break His, bringing us more in line with His will. He will change the way that we feel, think, and operate, for the better. It has been thought by several Christian writers that, after Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and God giving the Holy Spirit to us…

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Fully commited

‘I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.’ Philipians 3:8 NKJV Nowhere in the Bible does God say He’s going to send us to safe places to do easy things. But He never leaves us to do challenging things on our own. He says He’ll always be with us (have a read of Hebrews 13:5). But in order to do life with God, and to walk in His ways, we need to be fully committed. Faced with the cross, Jesus prayed the ultimate prayer of commitment: ‘Yet not my will, but yours be done’ (Luke…

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Be ready

‘You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.’ Luke 12:40 NIV We know that one day Jesus is going to come back again. So we need to be ready for Him. He may come tomorrow, in a year, or even after our lifetime – so we need to make sure we’re prepared. Jesus said: ‘You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him’ (v.40 NIV). Jesus compares us waiting for His return to a manager who has been put in…

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Desire for God

‘Blessed are those who…seek him with all their heart.’ Psalm 119:2 NIV The Bible says, ‘Love the Lord…with all your heart’ (Deuteronomy 6:5 NIV). ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart’ (Proverbs 3:5 NIV). ‘You will…find me when you seek me with all your heart’ (Jeremiah 29:13 NIV). The key word here is ‘all’. And the question is, do we love the Lord with all our hearts? Are we trusting Him with all our hearts? Are we seeking Him with all our hearts? It can be easy to let other things into our hearts. We become distracted with work, family, even serving in…

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