September Month 2009
September 18th, 2009
"Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended he afterward hungered." -Luke 4:1-2
Jesus had just been baptized by John the Baptist. He heard the father say that he was His beloved son in whom he was well pleased. However, afterwards he fasted and prayed for 40 days. The scripture says he was hungry, which suggest his physical body was week.
The text is tailored to teach us that when we deny ourselves and focus completely on the will of the father, he will strengthen us in weakness. Jesus knew he would face Satan but he was not concerned about his physical weakness he was prepared because of his faith in the Father. When you fast and pray, your body may be weakened but your spirit man will be able to handle all things because of Christ which strengthen you. Always prepare yourself in the lord, with preparation that works.
Pastor SP Courtney
"But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope." - 1st Thessalonians 4:13
Pastor SP Courtney
One day, I woke early in the morning to watch the sunrise. Ah! ... the beauty of God's creation is beyond description. As I watched, I praised God for His beautiful work. As I sat there, I felt the Lord's presence with me. He asked me, "Do you love me?" I answered, "Of course, God! You are my Lord and Saviour!"
Then He asked, "If you were physically handicapped, would you still love me?" I was perplexed. I looked down upon my arms, legs and the rest of my body and wondered how many things I wouldn't be able to do and thought about the things that I take for granted. I answered, "It would be tough Lord, but I would still love You."
Then the Lord said, "If you were blind, would you still love my creation?" How could I love something without being able to see it? Then I thought of all the blind people in the world and how many of them still loved God and His creation. So I answered, "It's hard to think of it, but I would still love you." The Lord then asked me, "If you were deaf, would you still listen to my word?" How could I listen to anything being deaf?
Then I understood. Listening to God's Word is not merely using our ears, but our hearts. I answered, "It would be tough, but I would still listen to Your word." The Lord then asked, "If you were mute, would you still praise My Name?" How could I praise without a voice? Then it occurred to me, God wants us to sing from our very hearts and souls. It never matters what we sound like. And praising God is not always with a song, but when we are persecuted, we give God praise with our words of thanks. So
I answered, "Though I could not physically sing, I would still praise Your Name." And the Lord asked, "Do you really love Me?" With courage and a strong conviction, I answered boldly, "Yes Lord! I love You because You are the one and true God!" I thought I had answered well, but God asked, "Then why do you sin?" I answered, "Because I am only human. I am not perfect." "Then why in times of peace do you stray the furthest? Why only in times of trouble do you pray the earnest?" I had no answers ... only tears.
The Lord continued. "Why only sing at fellowships and retreats? Why seek Me only in times of worship? Why ask things so selfishly? Why ask things so unfaithfully?" The tears continued to roll down my cheeks. "Why are you ashamed of Me? Why are you not spreading the good news? Why in times of persecution, you cry to others when I offer My shoulder to cry on?
Why make excuses when I give you opportunities to serve in My Name?""You are blessed with life. I made you not to throw this gift away. I have blessed you with talents to serve Me, but you continue to turn away. I have revealed My Word to you, but you do not gain in knowledge. I have spoken to you but your ears were closed. I have shown My blessings to you, but your eyes were turned away. I have heard your prayers and I have answered them all. Do you truly love me?
I could not answer. How could I? I was embarrassed beyond belief. I had no excuse. What could I say to this? When my heart had cried out and the tears had flowed, I said, "Please forgive me Lord. I am unworthy to be Your child." The Lord answered, "That is My Grace, My child." I asked, "Then why do you continue to forgive me? Why do You love me so?" The Lord answered,"Because you are My creation. You are my child. I will never abandon you. When you cry, I will have compassion and cry with you. When you shout with joy, I will laugh with you. When you are down, I will encourage you. When you fall, I will raise you up. When you are tired, I will carry you. I will be with you until the end of days, and I will love you forever." Never had I cried so hard before.
How could I have been so cold? How could I have hurt God as I had done? I asked God, "How much do You love me?" The Lord stretched out His arms, and I saw His nail-pierced hands. I bowed down at the feet of Christ, my Savior. And for the first time, I truly prayed.