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Whole heart

2 Chronicles 25:2  “He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, but not wholeheartedly.” 

The other day a team that I am a fan of lost a very close game.  In the past there were times when a loss like this would have upset me.  My wife noticed a difference and said, “You really took that well.” I explained to my wife that I was prepared to experience a loss that night.  The team I was cheering for was greatly overmatched and it did not put my whole heart into the prospect of them winning.

Tags:  Whole Heart, 2 Chronicles, King Amaziah

From “Other” to “Brother”

Ephesians 2: 12-13  “Remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”
 
Have you ever studied a “What is the difference” picture? I love these puzzles where you look at two pictures and try to find the subtle differences in each. It is amazing how hard you have to look to notice some of the smallest changes. 
 
Tags:  Ephesians, Paul, Differences, The Cross

What Am I Hear For?

Ephesians 2:10  “For we are God’s Handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” 

A couple of months ago, Scott Foster’s wildest dream became a reality - and he didn’t see it coming.  Scott is a 36 year-old accountant in Chicago who loves to play hockey in the beer league, during his free time.

Tags:  Purpose, Ephesians

No One Can Boast

Ephesians 2:8-9 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-not by works, so that no one can boast.” 
 
I love the satisfaction of a job well done. After mowing the lawn or mulching the beds I often walk in the street in front of my house to take in the fruit of my labor. It feels good to do a good job on yard work, a school project, or in the office, but what about faith? 
 
Paul was writing to a group of believers and reminds them that there is nothing th
Tags:  Boast, Sales Pitch, Paul, Ephesians

What the Future Looks Like

Ephesians 1: 18-19 “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.” 
 
Have you ever wanted to know the future? We as humans are fascinated with the future. We try to predict it, shape it, and even control it! Many of us spend significant amounts of energy worrying about a future that never happens. So, what is next in our lives? What does the Bible say our future looks like
Tags:  Ephesians, The Future, Paul, Inheritance, Eternity

What Does God Think of You?

Ephesians 1:4-5  “For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.  In love He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ in accordance with His pleasure and will.” 

Have you ever wondered what someone else really thinks of you?  Maybe you liked someone romantically but you did not know if they felt the same way.  Or maybe you wonder if your boss really values you.  At times you may have even wondered what God thinks of you. 

Tags:  Ephesians, Paul, Child of God, Adoption

Overcoming Fear

1 John 4:18 “There is not fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.”
 
What causes you fear? Every one of us deals with fear from time to time.
Tags:  overcoming fear, John, fear, perfect love

Against the Odds

Judges 7:2 The Lord said to Gideon, “You have too many men. I cannot deliver Midian into their hands, or Israel would boast against me, ‘My own strength has saved me.’” 
 
We all love a good underdog story. Whether it is a movie like Rudy about a walk-on player who plays at Notre Dame or a movie about a boxer from Philadelphia named Rocky who overcomes all the odds to win a championship.
Tags:  Against The Odds, Underdog, Judges, Gideon

Overcoming Skepticism

John 20:25 “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” 
 
There is an old saying that goes “Seeing is believing.” But this is not always true. In scripture many people had the opportunity to see Jesus and chose not to believe. Biblical faith is a trusting response to Jesus that leads to worship. There are many reasons we doubt: our sinful nature and desire to lead our own lives can get in the way. Also, our lack of spiritual maturity: the faith of a 9 year old will
Tags:  John, Skepticism