Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

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Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

Postby GingerSnap » 05pm31America/New_York()

I love Pastor Greg Laurie!!
Here's from the Daily Devotions from Harvest Ministries:

One day at the Sea of Galilee, Jesus said to His disciples, "Let us cross over to the other side" (Mark 4:35).

As they were making their way across, a huge storm came out of nowhere, which was a common occurrence on this large freshwater lake. The seasoned sailors were terrified as hurricane force winds hit and the boat filled with water.

Despite the bad weather, Jesus managed to sleep through it. But the disciples could no longer contain themselves.

Don't you care?

So they woke up Jesus, saying, "Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?" (v. 38) That is really a bit accusational, but it's the way they felt.

They were saying, essentially, "Lord, are You even aware of what we are facing right now?"

"Why are You allowing this?"

As I have said, it's fine to ask why as long as you don't expect an answer. Better to cry out in anguish to God than to turn from Him in anger.

Jesus rebuked them and the storm

Jesus woke up and rebuked the storm, but then He dealt with them too, asking them, "Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?" (v. 40) Or literally, "Why are you such timid, fearful ones?"

Jesus was saying, "Boys, haven't you learned anything here?"

You see, Jesus said, "Let's cross over to the other side!" He did not say, "Let's go drown in the middle of the Sea of Galilee!"He did not promise smooth sailing, but He did promise a safe passage.

Listen, it's better to be in a storm with Jesus than anywhere else without Him.
Or in a fiery furnace–just ask Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego. Or in a lion's den–just ask Daniel. Or in a prison–just ask Peter. Or in a storm again or even shipwrecked–just ask Paul.
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Re: Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

Postby GingerSnap » 07am31America/New_York()

From Pastor Greg this morning:

I remember when each of my sons took their first steps. Like most parents, we desperately wanted to see our kids take them. We were so excited.

Once they started walking, though, we sometimes wished we had never taught them how to do it, because we had to constantly keep an eye on them.

My youngest son Jonathan fell so many times when he was learning to walk that he had a permanent bruise on his forehead. A bruise would start to heal, and then he would fall again. He had bruises on top of bruises. We didn't recognize him without that bruise in the middle of his forehead.

The spiritual walk can be like that, especially when we are taking our first steps as a new believer. We stumble and fall. We get up. Then we stumble and fall again. It is all part of growing spiritually.

In Ephesians 4, the apostle Paul speaks to us about our spiritual walk, about how to walk spiritually.

Walking is an act that speaks of effort and of having a direction with a destination in mind. It speaks of steady motion, regularity, consistency, activity, movement, and progress. In Ephesians 4, God is telling us that it is time for us to walk in light of what we have already learned.

Prior to these verses, Paul has spent three chapters telling us what God has done for us, what God has given to us, and what God has provided for us. He has reminded us that we were all separated from God, alienated from His promises.

We were aimlessly walking through life with no purpose or direction, heading toward a certain judgment. But God loved us so much that He chose us before the foundation of the world.

Then He redeemed us. He bought us out of slavery to sin, adopted us into His family, and sealed us with the Holy Spirit.

If that were not enough, He then placed all of His resources into our spiritual bank account so that we would have everything that we need to grow spiritually.

In Ephesians 4, we learn more about what we are supposed to do for God. Notice the order. First, Paul tells us what God has done for us (as you read the Bible, you will find that the primary emphasis is just that). Then he tells us what we must do for God.

"I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called" (Ephesians 4:1 NKJV).

We may read that verse and think, "I am in trouble. How could I ever be worthy? There is nothing I could ever do to deserve God's grace." But that is not what the word "worthy" means here.

This word could be translated as, "to balance the scales." In other words, what is on one side of the scale should be equal in weight to what is on the other side of the scale. This word can be applied to anything that is expected to correspond to something else. Another way to translate it is, "I want you to live a balanced life."

But what is the balance he is referring to? Paul was telling us that there needs to be a balance between our belief and our practice, between our doctrine and the way that we live. The two need to go together.

Some people are lopsided. They may be strong in one area and weak in another. I have met people who have an incredible and impressive knowledge of the Bible. They know Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. They dazzle you with what they know. But their personal life is in shambles.

The problem is that they are imbalanced. They have the knowledge. They have the doctrine. But their life is out of balance.

Then there are those who don't know much doctrinally. They don't really know what the Bible teaches on certain subjects, but they love the Lord. They are passionate about their faith in Jesus Christ. In fact, you might hear them say something like, "Let's not quibble over doctrine. I just love Jesus."

That sounds admirable, but it is a dangerous statement. If they are not careful, they might end up loving the wrong Jesus. They might end up believing the wrong gospel, and that is where doctrine comes in.

We need the balance of having both of these areas working together. That is what it means to walk worthy of the Lord.
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Re: Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

Postby GingerSnap » 09am31America/New_York()

This is todays devotion, a continuation from the other day:

So what do you do when unexpected trouble comes your way, when you have a "shipwreck" in life?

Paul was able to survive literal shipwrecks and more. How? He knew God was with him. He belonged to God. And he was doing the will of God.

Now, one final principle: he believed God. Paul turned to the others onboard the sinking ship and said, "So take courage! For I believe God!" (Acts 27:25)

I believe God!

I love those words . . . "I believe God!" Those are not the words of a person in denial or out of touch with reality.

Paul said this while they were still in the worst of the storm with no hope. The sun was not shining, the clouds were still dark, and the seas were still rough.

It wasn't a case of "mind over matter," but "faith over circumstances!"

Paul was fully convinced of the faithfulness of God and was sustained by that conviction. He had seen God faithfully take care of him up to this point and he was confident of his future.

Jesus was "Captain of his boat"

Paul knew that God was master of all his circumstances and Captain of his boat.

Luke 5 tells the story of Jesus making one of his first contacts with Simon Peter. The Lord asked to borrow the fisherman's boat for a sermon that He gave just a few feet from the pressing multitude.

After Jesus told him to "launch out into the deep for a catch," Peter replied, "Master, we have toiled all night; nevertheless at your word we will do it . . . "

Peter used an interesting word for "Master." It means "captain of this boat."

And what was the result? Luke 5:6 tells us, "And this time their nets were so full they began to tear!" Peter fell down before Jesus, and the Lord said, "Follow me and I will make you fishers of men."

Will you let Him be the Captain and Master of your boat?

What about when my investments fail?

Is Jesus still "Captain of my boat" when I lose my job? Yes, when you lose your job.

Is He Lord when my house burns down or my investments fail? Yes, He is Lord then too.

What about when I get cancer? Yes, He is Lord when you have cancer.

What if a loved one has died, is He still Lord? Yes, even if a loved one has died. For it is then that we need our Captain who will "get us to the other side"

Jesus is there.

This world says, "You will never survive this crisis, the end has come! Even God has abandoned and forgotten about you!"

I reject that. You and I who have put our faith in Christ belong to Him.

Jesus says, "I will never leave you or forsake you." Jesus says, "Let's cross over to the other side!"

This world says, "Death is the end. This life is all there is." Jesus says, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me, though he may die, he shall live" (John 11:25 NKJV).

You may be going through a storm right now, or you too may have just been "shipwrecked." You are not alone. Let God help you now. I urge you to "believe God," like Paul.
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Re: Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

Postby GingerSnap » 10pm31America/New_York()

Choose Life!

Therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live . . .

— Deuteronomy 30:19


In making a covenant with His people, God made an interesting statement. He said, "I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live . . ." (Deuteronomy 30:19). It's amazing that some people consciously choose death. But that is essentially what we do when we decide to go against God and His Word.

I must admit to you that sin can be very appealing. Because of the short-term pleasures sin brings, we often don't think of its long-term repercussions. I ask you right now, is your sin forgiven? Or are you without that hope, without that knowledge that your sin is forgiven? Until you deal with your sin, it's as if you have erected a wall between you and your God. There is an old saying, "If you feel you are far from God, guess who moved?" God hasn't gone anywhere. But perhaps we have. Perhaps we have let our sin separate us from Him.

We may pray, we may try to draw close to the Lord, but the sin we have not dealt with must be confessed before we can find the forgiveness God wants us to experience. God does and God will forgive sin. He can and will forgive your sin. Choose forgiveness, choose life.
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Re: Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

Postby GingerSnap » 07pm30America/New_York()

Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.

— 1 Timothy 4:16


In America today, we have something that could be described as a new spirituality. It's a revival of sorts—not in the biblical sense of people turning to God, but a revival of all kinds of ancient and weird spiritual concepts and beliefs.

People are spiritually hungry. They are searching for truth. And the problem is, some of this strange theology is finding its way into the church.

We must be very careful to keep our guard up. Don't forget that when the devil misled Eve in the Garden of Eden, he did it with partial truth. He did not question God's Word altogether. Rather, he questioned if Eve properly understood it.
We must be careful of the deviant teachings that are out there today. So often when a new teaching comes along, we will get excited: a new revelation!

I hope this won't disappoint you, but there aren't any new revelations. Everything you need to know about God is already written in His Book. As it has been said, if it's true, it isn't new. And if it's new, it isn't true.

So don't go looking for new revelations. Spend your time instead in learning God's Word, and He will bring fresh understanding of it.

Years ago, the great thinker C. S. Lewis warned us, "If you do not listen to theology, that will not mean that you have no ideas about God. It will mean that you have a lot of wrong ones." I think this is especially important today.

We need to know what Jesus said. We need to know what the truth is. We need to pay attention to doctrine

/s/Greg Laurie
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Re: Harvest Ministries/Greg Laurie

Postby GingerSnap » 01am30America/New_York()

Here is a great example of how the pen (written words) are mightier than the sword!!! Really helps us to see why it's important to read the bible and meditate on it .. sink the words into our hearts so we have something to recall when in need.
------------------------------------

From Pastor Greg today:

An Example to Follow

For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.

— Hebrews 2:18


Although He was God, Jesus experienced human limitations like we do.

Not only was He hungry, not only was He sleepy, not only was He weary and lonely, but He also was tempted. Jesus felt the presence and pressure of temptation just as we do. He didn't have a sinful nature, but He experienced temptation.

Now why is it important for us to be aware of the fact that Jesus was tempted? It was so we could know that we follow a God who understands what we're going through.

As the apostle Paul wrote, "In all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people" (Hebrews 2:17).

Jesus also left us an example to follow as we face temptation. He occupied ground that we, too, can occupy.

It's important to note that Jesus did not meet Satan with His considerable supernatural power. He could have said, "I don't want to fool around with you right now. I have other things to do." And He could have disappeared. He could have called on the angels to intervene. He could have even overruled Satan because of His clear authority over him.

Instead, He met the devil with the written Word. He countered every temptation with Scripture (see Luke 4:1–13).

So when you are tempted, you also need to have Scripture stored in your mind and heart to deflect the blows of the devil. When you have memorized Scripture, when you have gotten it ingrained in your memory banks, it is there to use during times of temptation.
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