Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Let Go!


Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.  Hebrews 12:1, NIV


Jesus Christ has set you and me free as surely as He raised Lazarus from the dead,
 but we have to take off the grave clothes and let them go!

The writer to the Hebrews exhorts us to throw off the grave clothes and "everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

Don't wallow in your "whys?"

Don't throw a pity-party.

Don't remain in your misery.

Understand that you may not understand this side of heaven.

Trust God to sort it all out in the end.

Blessings

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Nature's Witness


As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.  Genesis 8:21-22, NIV


In spite of the sin and rebellion that God knew lurked in the very next generation of Noah's sons and would increase with every subsequent generation, God committed Himself to spare the earth His previous judgments. While He did not remove the curse He had placed on Planet Earth following Adam and Eve's sin in the Garden, He vowed He would not increase the curse. And He promised that never again would He destroy all life on the planet as He had done during the Flood.

As evidence that He was good and would keep His promise, God pointed to the very cycles in nature. As you and I see the winter snows give way to spring flowers and the summer's heat give way to autumn's briskness, we are reminded that in back of the changes is the God Who never changes. The sun that rises every morning and sets every evening, the stars that come out in the night sky, and the moon that goes through its monthly phases-all reveal the glory of God, Who is good! How do your daily habits and lifestyle bear witness to the glory of God?

Blessings

Friday, October 26, 2012

God Is With You


I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation.  Psalm 13:5, NIV


The apostle John, suffering in exile on Patmos near the end of his life, must have prayed earnestly to be restored to his church and to his ministry. He must have begged God to get him off of the remote island so he could continue preaching and serving as a pastor and evangelist. Yet God didn't answer his prayers. Instead, John related that it was on Patmos that God drew near to him and gave him a vision of the glory of Jesus Christ-a vision he recorded for the encouragement of every generation of believers since that time in the Book of Revelation. Jesus was with him in exile on Patmos!

What is your Patmos? A place where you are seemingly cut off and exiled from ministry and family? Is it a hospital bed? Or a small home with small children? Is it a workplace where you are surrounded by politically correct hostility to Christ?

Then look up! God is with you!

Blessings

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Run from Temptation!


Flee . . . evil desires . . .and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace. 2 Timothy 2:22, NIV


Eve became dissatisfied with God's will when Satan was able to focus her attention on the one thing God had said she could not have-the forbidden fruit. The temptation that confronted Eve intensified because she tolerated it by actually talking to the Serpent about it.

But the basic problem was not what she said; it was that she said anything at all! As she conversed with the Serpent she got into deeper trouble, because he responded, "You will not surely die" (Gen. 3:4, NIV). That was an absolute, deliberate contradiction of what God did say! Eve was confronted with Satan's word against God's Word. Who would she choose to believe?

Jesus said we are to cut temptation out of our lives by severing ourselves from whatever is causing us to be tempted. (Matt. 5:29-30) The apostle Paul said we should run from it. Nowhere in the Bible does it say we are to talk about it! Unless we do our talking with the Lord. So . . . cut it out! And pray while you run from temptation!

Blessings

Monday, October 22, 2012

Energized and Strengthened


We have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God. 1 Corinthians 2:12, NKJV


The Holy Spirit Who now lives in you is the same Holy Spirit in Genesis 1 Who hovered over the formless, empty, dark blob of earth that dangled in space. As He powerfully energized and pulsated the atmosphere, He prepared the planet to receive God's Word and be transformed into a place of purpose and beauty that ultimately, in the end, reflected the image of God.

That same Holy Spirit is now powerfully at work in your life, hovering over your heart, preparing you to love God and be fully aware of His love for you. He hovers over your mind, preparing you to understand spiritual things and the truth of His Word. He hovers over your will, preparing you to make decisions that are pleasing to Him. All the power of God-the same power that hung the stars in place and put the planets in their courses and transformed Earth-now resides in you to energize and strengthen you to become the person God created you to be.

Blessings

Saturday, October 20, 2012


I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.   Psalm 13:2, NIV


King David knew that the secret of victory over adversity was a conscious choice to praise God. Again and again, as he cries out to God in prayer, we hear his choice to praise: "How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart? . . . Look on me and answer, O Lord my God. . . . But I will trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me" (Ps. 13:2-6, NIV). David, hounded by Saul and living as a fugitive for years in a nation where he was the national hero as well as the anointed king, exercised his will to praise God even when he just didn't feel like it.

Praise is the switch that turns on the light of joy in our lives even when it's "dark" outside. And the resulting "light" causes others to see the glory of God in our lives.

Blessings

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Showcase For God's Glory


You have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith . . . maybe found to praise, honor, and glory.  1 Peter 1:6-7, NKJV


Jesus described the powerful witness of a life that is different when He illustrated it as "the light of the world" (Matt. 5:14). The primary value of light is that it is so different from the darkness. When Jesus then informed His disciples that "you will be my witnesses," (Acts 1:8) it was clear that one primary value of the apostles' witness would lie in the difference of their lives from those who lived around them.

A witness that is lived can be as powerful as one that is spoken. It's not what you say but who you are that catches the attention of those around you-which is one reason God allows grievances, crises, sufferings, injustice, and hardship to come into our lives. Because problems offer us the opportunity to give silent, relevant witness to the difference faith in God can make. The problems enable us to become a showcase so that the world can look into our lives and see the glory of God revealed.

Blessings

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Our Built-In Alarm System


Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, . . . having a good conscience, that . . . those who revile your good conduct . . . may be ashamed.  1 Peter 3:15-16, NKJV


Wrong attitudes have enormous power in our lives. That's why God has placed within each of us a conscience that begins to feel guilty when our attitudes and actions are wrong.

Many of the later-model cars are equipped with theft alarm systems. The more sensitive ones can be annoying to the general public as the least bit of motion by a passer-by or the lightest touch to the car body can send off an ear-splitting siren accompanied by flashing lights and honking horn. But that obnoxious sensitivity is purposefully designed to be a protection against unwanted entry.

God has built into each of us an alarm system to warn us of the unwanted entry of sin into our lives. The alarm system is called guilt. Guilt is our friend. Without it we would go on in sin until we were dominated and defeated by it. So . . . heed the alarm and repent of your sin!

Blessings

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Jesus Finished God's Work


"My food . . . is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work."  John 4:34, NIV


At the beginning of His public ministry, after having walked all morning and talked with the woman of Samaria for the better part of the afternoon, Jesus' disciples returned with food, urging Him to eat. He resisted their urging by saying, "I have food to eat that you know nothing about." When the confused disciples wondered who could have brought Him something to eat, He explained, "My food . . . is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work."

In order to finish God's work, Jesus had to keep His focus and embrace that purpose with a single heart and mind, lining up all of His priorities accordingly. The result of finishing His Father's work would be even more deeply satisfying than food to a starving man.

If you and I are able to finish God's work, it will not be an accident. It will be because we have been focused every minute of every day of every week of every month of every year of our lives on God's purpose.

Blessings

Friday, October 12, 2012

A Quiet Miracle


Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted.   

John 6:11, NIV


When Jesus miraculously fed the crowd with five loaves and two fishes, the people weren't just given a snack or a bite to tide them over until they could get a full meal, they "all had enough to eat" (John 6:12, NIV)!

It was such a quiet, unobtrusive miracle-nothing flashy or showy or manipulative or spectacular. There had been no adequate resources to feed so many people at once, yet everyone was not only fed but also filled!

How had He accomplished the miracle? The formula is really quite simple:

The disciples gave it all.

Jesus took it all.

God blessed it all.

Jesus broke it all.

The disciples gave it all.

And the entire multitude was fed!

Blessings

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A Radical Change


"Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you."  Genesis 12:1, NIV


God promised to bless Abraham, but Abraham would not receive all God had for him unless he claimed it by leaving everything-his familiar surroundings, his comfortable lifestyle, his old friends, his values, his job, his home, and even his family-and set out on a life of faith. God told him, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you" (Gen. 12:1). Abraham did not know where God would lead, just that he was to follow. God's command was clear. Abraham was to put God first in his life if he wanted to receive God's blessing.

If Abraham obeyed God by putting Him first and by following His lead for the rest of his life, things would be dramatically different. He must have known that God was not just adding a weekend hobby or an additional commitment to an already busy life. God was describing a radical change!

Blessings

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

What does it mean to be a "CHRISTIAN"?

The word “CHRISTIAN” means “follower of Christ.”

Please, let me say this again!

The word “CHRISTIAN” means “follower of Christ.”

This “WORD” was used when Agrippa said to the apostle Paul, “ALMOST thou PERSUADEST [to convince] me to be a Christian” (Acts 26:28). Let’s hope and pray that Agrippa was later convinced to ACTUALLY BECOME a Christian, otherwise, he is in HELL right now!

Also, the apostle Peter wrote: “…if ANY MAN SUFFER as a Christian, let him BE NOT ASHAMED; but let him GLORIFY God on this behalf” (1 Peter 4:16). 

SUFFERING ALWAYS ACCOMPANIES you when you are a FOLLOWER of Jesus Christ: “…ALL that will live godly IN CHRIST JESUS shall SUFFER persecution” (2 Tim. 3:12).

“…WE MUST [that is, those of us who CONTINUE in the faith…] through MUCH TRIBULATION enter into the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22).
Believers “…were called CHRISTIANS FIRST in Antioch” (Acts 11:26), because they were FOLLOWERS of Jesus Christ.

Today, and WITHOUT MUCH THOUGHT AT ALL, Christians are referred as Catholic Christians, Protestant Christians, Orthodox Christians, Presbyterians, Baptists, Quakers, Episcopalians, Puritans, Anglicans, Lutherans and a HOST OF OTHER BRANDS of Christians! 

Have YOU forgotten what the word “CHRISTIAN” means? 

It means “FOLLOWER of Christ.”

Then, WHO are all of these BRANDS following; the SAME Jesus?

The reason for all of these BRANDS of “followers of Christ” is because of what Jesus said:

“Suppose ye that I am come to give PEACE ON EARTH? I tell you, NAY [not indeed]; but rather DIVISION [disunion of OPINION; which explains why we have all of these denominations]” (Luke 12:51).


Think of it this way:

“…from henceforth there shall be FIVE in one house DIVIDED, THREE [Baptist] against TWO [Catholics], and TWO [Anglicans] against THREE [Lutherans]” (Luke 12:52)!

Jesus said, “If ANY MAN will COME AFTER ME [meaning with ENCLITIC of direction; to LEAN toward; to incline], let him DENY HIMSELF [to deny utterly self; to disown self; to abstain self], and TAKE UP [to WEIGH anchor] HIS CROSS [exposure to death], and FOLLOW ME [which means, a road; to be in the same way with; to accompany]” (Matt. 16:24).

If you believe, from the sincerity of your heart, that all of these denominations are “…IN THE SAME WAY WITH…” Jesus Christ, you are NOT BORN of the Spirit of God!

God has already provided an explanation for this worlds’ RELIGIOUS division:

“…every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.

“IS CHRIST DIVIDED? Was Paul crucified for you? OR were ye BAPTIZED in the name of Paul” (1 Cor. 1:12-13)? YOU KNOW THE ANSWER!!!

Beloved, it is NOW TIME to “AWAKE TO RIGHTEOUSNESS, and SIN NOT; for some HAVE NOT the knowledge of God” (1 Cor. 15:34), and are “…TAKEN CAPTIVE by [THE DEVIL] at his will” (2 Tim. 2:26).

In these last days before the return of our Lord and Saviour, we are commanded to “…COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM, and be ye SEPARATE…” (2 Cor. 6:17), for HOW “…can TWO WALK TOGETHER, except they be AGREED” (Amos 3:3)?

“…knowing the TIME, that NOW it is HIGH TIME to AWAKE OUT OF SLEEP: for NOW is our salvation NEARER than when we believed” (Romans 13:11).


Blessings

Monday, October 8, 2012

Glory Follows Suffering


Glory Follows Suffering

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.  Romans 8:18, NKJV

Bad things do happen to those Jesus loves. But remember this spiritual principle: Glory follows suffering, and life follows death.

Miss Audrey Wetherell Johnson was a woman greatly beloved of God. Born in England, educated in Europe, delivered from agnosticism, and transformed by God's grace into a gifted Bible teacher and preacher, she answered God's call to the mission field in China during the 1930s.

After years of teaching pastors and church leaders in a theological seminary in Beijing, Miss Johnson was scooped up with other missionaries and placed in a Japanese concentration camp for three years of intolerable and unmentionable suffering. Yet once again we glimpse God's glory when we learn that Miss Johnson was finally released, came to America, and began Bible Study Fellowship, an international ministry that now has approximately one million men and women who use her material and format to study God's Word each week.

If something bad has happened to you, would you look forward to the glory that IS coming?!

Blessings

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Wonder of Wonders


Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.   Isaiah 1:18, NKJV


In the Old Testament, when a person sinned, he was required to take the very best, blue-ribbon lamb he could find, one without any spots or blemishes, to the priest at the temple. There, in front of the priest, the sinner would grasp the lamb with both hands and confess his sin. His guilt was transferred to the lamb. The priest would then hand the sinner a knife, and the sinner would kill the lamb so that it was obvious the lamb had died as a result of the sinner's action.

The pervasive misconception today is that since Jesus died as a sacrifice for the sins of the world, then we are all automatically forgiven. But we overlook the vital truth that we must grasp the Lamb with our hands of faith and confess our sins. We then must acknowledge that He was slain for our sins as surely as if we had plunged the knife into His heart. At that moment, the Lamb becomes our High Priest and offers His own blood on the altar of the Cross on our behalf. And, wonder of wonders! God accepts the sacrifice and we are forgiven!

Blessings

Friday, October 5, 2012

Have You Heard of the Four Steps to Friendship with God



“The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him”(for those who look upon Him with reverential awe) 

Psalm 25:14

1.  Step One

Know that God loves you with an everlasting love and wants to bless you and fellowship with you.

The Bible says that our heavenly Father has a plan for each of our individual lives.  To fulfill that plan is nothing less than ultimate success in life.  But we need to hear Him, so that He can lead us into His plan for our lives.  But to do that, we need to be connected to Him through a personal loving relationship.  All of us have a great need to hear that “still small voice” of God so that we can receive His guidance and know more about the plan He has for our lives.  We need communication with Him all through the day, allowing Him to speak to us by placing His thoughts in our minds.  We need to hear Him teach us as we read the Scriptures.  We need to seek to hear Him much as a child seeks the guidance of a parent.  As a child of God, we need to begin by receiving the love that our heavenly Father offers so unsparingly.

Why is it important to receive God’s love?

“But as many as received Him (Jesus), to them He gave the right to become God’s children, to those who believe in Him” (John 1:12).  See also Rom. 8:15b.

2.  Step Two

The knowledge that God offers His love to you every hour of every day may not be new to you; what may be new is that you have to receive Him who is love or His loving forgiveness will not become yours.

Generally, humanity gives and receives human love.  That is because most people have not received God’s love.  We cannot give something we do not have.  It is vital in all of our lives that we receive God’s love so that we can love Him back and love those around us with His love.

The essence of salvation is receiving God’s forgiveness, which is part of His love.  So all Christians begin by receiving His love.  If we are born again, we have already received His loving forgiveness.  At any time, we can open the door and ask Him to come in—even right now, you can simply tell Him that you want to know Him personally and live with Him forever—that you want to love and obey Him—that you know that Jesus paid the penalty for your sin on the cross and now offers you His loving forgiveness.  Then out of simple faith in what God has said, open the door and receive Him.  Receive His love, His forgiveness and the fullness of His Holy Spirit.  But to grow up in the Christian life, we must continue to receive His gift of forgiveness because we continue to sin.  That is difficult because humanity is difficult.

3.  Step Three

“If you will humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, in His good time, He will lift you up” (1st Peter 5:6).  See also Matt. 23:12, Luke 18:14.

Know that humility is absolutely necessary to receive God’s love—to be lifted up by our heavenly Father.

We must put aside the love and concern we have for ourselves to make room for the love of another.  God’s love is all around us all the time.  If we make room, He will surely come in.

You may ask, “How can I control this ego of mine and humble myself so that I can receive God’s love?”  Our ego doesn’t want to be dependent on anyone; it wants others to be dependent on us, so that we appear to be someone special.  But there is only One who is not dependent on anyone and that is God.

It is said that a humble person does not stoop smaller than he is; he stands at his real height seeing the reality of how small he is compared to God.  When he humbles himself, he does not have to put on an act anymore because he has the real thing.  Humility causes us to begin to fit into God’s kingdom and into the purpose He has for our lives which is fellowship with Himself.  In trusting humility, we can open the door of our hearts and receive God’s love through a real, personal, loving relationship (Revelation 3:20).  Then, through the power of His love, we have the strength to overcome our old sinful nature and love Him back.  Because He loves us first, we are able to do our part and complete an exchange of love.

Where does this exchange of love lead?

“The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him” (Psalm 25:14).  See also Proverbs 19:23, 1st Cor. 1:9, John 15:9-11.

4.     Step Four


With reverential awe (fear of the Lord), we can be a friend of God.  Through a close, personal relationship (an exchange of love), we can have loving companionship and that peace “that passes all understanding” now and throughout eternity.

The communication that comes out of this loving relationship brings us into the very presence of the Lord, and that produces the reverential awe that the Bible calls the fear of God.  Psalm 33:8 says, “Let all the earth fear the Lord—let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.”  In verse 18 of the same chapter, it says, “Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His steadfast love.”  A close relationship with the Lord produces not only His presence, but also reverential awe and hope in His steadfast love.

In a personal loving relationship with someone greater and higher, there has to be recognition of who is greater and higher right up front, and that is exactly what the fear of the Lord does.  If we humbly relate to Him with reverential awe, a balance appears—each one relates to the other exactly as they are.  God does not become lower and we do not become higher, but there is a mutual recognition of the difference.  Then the power of God’s love takes over and friends begin to fellowship.

Maintaining Friendship with God


All of our personalities are different, so there is no set way to relate to our Lord.  However, there are helps in the Scriptures.  Some of them are listed below, along with some of the Scripture references.  (All Scripture references would be too many to list.)

1.  Ask the Lord for understanding and wisdom as you read the Bible.

2.  Forgive everyone who has offended you, whether or not they ask for it.  All of us, to one degree or another, fail to forgive those who, knowingly or unknowingly, have hurt us.  It is here that we must choose to go on in the new life God has given us.  We must choose to continue to receive His forgiveness by becoming a forgiver ourselves (see Matthew 6:14, 15).

3.  Get rid of all known sin.  Pray for the conviction of the Holy Spirit of unknown sin, and receive God’s loving forgiveness.

4.  Monitor any wrong thinking and continue to receive His loving forgiveness on a daily basis as the bedrock of you relationship.

5.  Guard you mind, knowing that sin begins in the mind.  Get prompt forgiveness for sinful thoughts, especially those produced by anger or a critical attitude.  Ask the Lord for His thoughts.

6.  Turn away from the world.  Be “in the world, but not of the world.”

7.  Keep your mind “stayed on Him” by thanking Him in every circumstance of the day.  Listen to hymns and spiritual songs when you can, and hum, whistle, or sing chorus songs when you can.

8.  Refuse to be moody or depressed by asking Jesus to raise His standard (the blood of the cross) against Satan and his demons and ask for His peace and His joy.

9.  Pray that God will help you to receive His love and the filling of the Holy Spirit every day.  Knowing that leads to union with our Lord.  Pray the prayer of Jesus—that you would be in union with Him as He is in union with the Father (John 17:19-26).

10.  Commit the day into God’s hands every morning.  Be aware of any thoughts or Scripture that He may put in your mind.  Spend time in meditation with the Lord, asking Him about the affairs of the day and the things that are on your hear.  Then clear your mind and listen for His “still small voice.”  That may take time because of the resistance of the flesh.  Our old sinful nature is very persistent, but we must be more persistent.  Be aware that there are three persons that have access to our minds: God, the devil, and the flesh (ourselves)—we must sort them out using the Bible as our guide.

11.  Whenever you need answers to life’s many questions, ask the Lord to give you a word about your need.

12.  Know that you never have to be lonely; Jesus is right there at the door knocking, waiting to fellowship with you and to lead you into fellowship with our heavenly Father (see Revelation 3:20).

Conclusion


The Bible says that God has given everyone a measure of faith.  Does it not make sense to exercise the measure of faith that we already have and let it grow?  As faith increases, we receive more and more of God’s love and give Him more and more of our love.  It becomes a wonderful cycle of love and faith.  All of this is expressed in one sentence in Galatians 5:6.  It says, “Faith works through love.”  If we want more faith, we must allow it to “work” through a loving relationship with our heavenly Father.

What we have been discussing is the most important thing in anyone’s life.  It is the very reason God has placed us on this planet.  He is a loving person who has a need.  He needs the love of His children.  His love is not complete until we love Him back.  And His love is not fulfilling until we enter a continuing relationship that allows Him to bless us to the extent that we are able to fellowship with Him, which is the reason for our very existence.

It is true that there is difficulty in overcoming our old sinful nature called “the flesh,” but I suggest to you that there is no other alternative if our lives are to have meaning in this life and the life to come.  It may be that you are on this pathway of loving God; if not, you can depend on Him to lead you as you develop your relationship.

We have seen that “the friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him.”  We can all be a friend of God if we fear Him.  Most Christians love and respect David because he was a “friend of God”—just read the psalms he wrote and you will see why.  It is because in humility, he had the fear of God.

As we look upon our Lord with reverential awe, you and I, with a full measure of His forgiveness, can have the fantastic privilege of being a friend of the God of the universe—the very One who created us.

You can be part of the Alliance

This message about receiving God’s love is meant to help form an alliance of born-again Christians who see the need for revival in ourselves and in others around the world.  Genuine revival will surely come as we encourage each other to receive God’s love and love Him in return.  We can help each other as we seek God for the life-changing and world-changing effects of revival.  It is becoming very clear that revival in the Church has already begun because more and more believers recognize their need to be closer to God.

We hope that you will want to help us promote an emphasis of the way to revival which is achieving a personal, loving relationship with our heavenly Father through Jesus our Lord.


Thursday, October 4, 2012

More Consistency


"Abide in Me, and I in you."   John 15:4, NKJV


The branch is totally, absolutely, completely dependent upon the Vine, not only for fruit, but for life. Whether because of pride or fear or some other reason, we as branches seem to struggle with being totally dependent on the Vine.

In what areas of your life are you acting independently of the Vine? I can usually determine these areas by just checking my prayer life. The items I have not prayed about- the people and problems, the relationships and responsibilities, the activities and attitudes, the schedules and stress, the entertainment and exercise, the pleasures and pastimes, the decisions and dreams, the desires and diets, anything and everything-are those areas of my life where I am not dependent upon Him. If my heart's cry is for more of His fruitfulness, then one of the goals of my life needs to be more consistency in my dependency. Would you make this your goal, too?

Blessings

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Pearly Gates


The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl.   Revelation 21:21, NIV


Pearls are formed when a small grain of sand becomes embedded in an oyster, irritating it. To soften the irritation, the oyster coats the grain of sand with a smooth layer of what is called mother of pearl. As long as the oyster can feel the irritation, it continues to coat the sand with layers of pearl. What kind of irritation would have been necessary to form the pearls that make up the gates to our heavenly city when they are so large they can fit into a wall that is two hundred feet thick?! It must have been more than just irritation. It must have been horrendous, severe suffering!

I wonder . . . are the pearls a reminder, every time you and I enter My Father's House, that we enter only because of the intense suffering and death of God's Son? Do those pearly gates reflect the Cross of Jesus Christ?

Blessings