“But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” 2 Corinth 11:3 NKJV
1. PREFER PRESENCE OVER PRESENTS!!
“Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” Matt 2:2 NKJV
“Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a fatted calf with hatred.” Prov 15:17 NKJV
2. TAKE A STAND AND OFFER THE PLEASING GIFT OF WORSHIP!!
“And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him…” Matt 2:11 NKJV
“When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me...
GOD DOES THE UNEXPECTED TO REVEAL HIS “OUT-OF-THE-BOX” NATURE
But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both well advanced in years. (Luke 1:7 NKJV)
But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John.” (Luke 1:13 NKJV)
1. JESUS WILL SAY THE UN-THINKABLE TO STRETCH OUR FAITH
So it was, on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise the child; and they would have called him by the name of his father, Zacharias. His mother answered and said, “No; he shall be called John.” (Luke 1:59-60 NKJV)
2. BREAK THE CURSE OF THE TYPICAL BY DEFENDING THE UN-THINKABLE PROMISE OF GOD
But they said to her, “There is no one among your relatives who is called by this name.” So they made signs to his father—what he would have him called. (Luke 1:61-62 NKJV)
And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, saying, “His name is...
HAVING A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!
“The Light Side Of Christmas”
“For my eyes have seen Your salvation…A LIGHT OF REVELATION TO THE GENTILES, and the glory of Your people Israel.” (Luke 2:30 & 32 NASB)
JESUS DIDN’T JUST APPEAR, HE WAS BORN
“ ‘Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him’.” (Matthew 2:2 NASB)
1. DON’T TURN TO DISTRACTIONS
“Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4 NASB)
2. STAY OUT OF THE CURRENT
“In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night.” (Luke 2:8 NASB)
“…an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them… ‘I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:9-11 NASB)
GRATITUDE: The heartfelt expression of appreciation of the grace that was given to you.
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NKJV)
1. GRATITUDE TURNS ORDINARY MOMENTS INTO BLESSINGS.
INGRATITUDE: Not appreciating or valuing what you have, or have been given.
“…are they really his children? They are a deceitful and twisted generation. Is this the way you repay the Lord, you foolish and senseless people? Isn’t He your Father who created you? Has He not made you and established you? Remember the days of long ago; think about the generations past. Ask your father, and he will inform you. Inquire of your elders, and they will tell you.” (Deuteronomy 32:5-7 NLT)
2. CHOOSE TO REMEMBER THE GOODNESS AND FAITHFULNESS OF THE LORD.
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord...
MAKING LIFE WONDERFUL
TRAINING BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD
CHOOSE TO BE TRAINED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD, NOT BY CIRCUMSTANCES
A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher. (Luke 6:40 NKJV)
A few mentions on how the Holy Spirit trains us:
1. THE SPIRIT OF GOD TRAINS OUR EYES TO SEE WHAT THE FATHER SEES
He who diligently seeks good seeks favor, but he who seeks evil, evil will come to him. (Proverbs 11:27 NASB)
2. THE SPIRIT OF GOD ADJUSTS OUR ATTITUDE FROM GROSS TO GRACE
But he answered and said to his father, “Look! For so many years I have been serving you and I have never neglected a command of yours; and yet you have never given me a young goat, so that I might celebrate with my friends; but when this son of yours came, who has devoured your wealth with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him.” (Luke 15:29-30 NASB)
And he said to him, “Son, you have always been with me, and all that is mine is yours. B...
“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.” (Deuteronomy 6:5, NKJV)
The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman: Acts of service, Words of affirmation, Gift giving, Physical touch, and Quality time
1.) SHOW YOUR LOVE FOR GOD BY ACTS OF SERVICE
“Serve the LORD with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing.” (Psalm 100:2, NASB)
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” (Romans 12:1–2, NKJV)
2.) SHOW YOUR LOVE FOR GOD BY SERVING WITH THE RIGHT ATTITUDE
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” (Colossians 3:23-24, ESV)
“Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another.” (Ephesians 4:25 NKJV)
“Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary.” (Ephesians 4:29 NKJV)
“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. (Ephesians 4:31 NKJV)
1. RELEASE AND RELOAD BEFORE YOU SPEAK.
“A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45 NKJV)
2. SLOW YOUR ROLL AND LISTEN.
“So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
(1 James 1:19 NKJV)
3. COMMUNICATE BY CONNECTING HEART-TO-HEART.
“Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you...
“Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.” Phil 4:11-12 NLT
CONTENTMENT: (n) a state of happiness and satisfaction.
1. UNDERSTAND AND ACCEPT WHO’S IN CONTROL!!
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phil 4:13 NASB
“Take your staff, the one you used when you struck the water of the Nile, and call some of the elders of Israel to join you. I will stand before you on the rock at Mount Sinai. Strike the rock, and water will come gushing out. Then the people will be able to drink.” Exodus 17:5-7 NLT
2. LEARN TO ADJUST AND ADAPT TO EVERY SEASON!!
“As Paul reached the stairs, the mob grew so violent the soldiers had to lift him to their shoulders to protect him. And the crowd followed behind, shouting ‘Kill h...
But the father said to his servants, “Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.” And they began to be merry. (Luke 15:22-24 NKJV)
HOME IS WHERE YOU CAN FEEL UGLY AND STILL BE LOVED