Daily Word Archives

What Open Door posts on Facebook - May 2013




We readily recognize that development takes time (and effort) - both naturally and spiritually. Even the things that might be said we have a natural talent in will take work, practice and diligence in order to be more than just average.


We know in the natural there are ways to do things that bring the good result that we want. We do not tell somebody on the job - just do it any old way and that is good enough. You'll never experience any excellence like that. So we endeavor to learn from foundational principles, moving on to deeper things, getting around those who are experienced and getting their advice and counsel, and finally there is the learning by doing. We step out at the level we are and get to work.


We understand that there is work to this, but we trust God to see fruit of our labor that will be pleasing to Him and a blessing both to others and ourselves. We remind ourselves again of God's wonderful work in us through Jesus Christ:


For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. ~ Ephesians 2:10




We are blessed to join with countless others on this National Day of Prayer. We encourage everyone to participate in some way - and do it with zeal and passion. The day reminds us that we are not looking to ourselves but to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.


We pray for God's mercy, wisdom and power on all of us in America - we especially lift up our leaders in this regard.


We are reminded of these words from I Samuel 12:23


Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way:


We know it is often difficult to pray fervently for some situations and some individuals when that which is wrong is promoted. If you read the context of the scripture above, you will find out that Samuel was not very happy with his people. He notes their sin and wickedness but tells them: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart; ~ verse 20.


Thus we ask God to instill in us the determination to continue following Him, to stand up and be counted for that which is right, and may we bear fruit for our lives and others.




Yesterday's focus on prayer reminds us of the words of Jesus:


And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; ~ Luke 18:1


When Jesus faced the climax and ultimate test of His mission on earth - And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground. ~ Luke 22:44


If the average person could have viewed this scene and the next 24 hours, they may have come to the conclusion that Jesus' prayers did not work very well. But we know the whole story now.

Sometimes the 24 hours after we pray may not show the results we would like, but that 24 hours is not the whole story.


We take both comfort and courage in the words of Jesus to always pray and not to faint.


"...The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." ~ James 5:16




We comment on a familiar scripture today:


Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. ~ I Timothy 6:12


How many of us wake up in the morning and think "I am ready for a good fight"? While we should not go out looking for someone or something to fight with, we should recognize that we do have an enemy. In this day and time it seems that living a life for Jesus that is bold and vocal will get the attention of the enemy and those that side with him.


If you do a study on spiritual warfare from the New Testament you do see the word "good" used more than once. It has been said that if you are forced to fight, make it a good one.


Take some time to meditate and pray about how God would have you wage a good warfare ~ I Timothy 1:18.


May the Holy Spirit guide us in this area, remind us that we wrestle not against flesh and blood (Ephesians 6:18), and show us the way to always triumph in Christ Jesus (II Corinthians 2:14)




Our last two posts mentioned the warfare we are in and particularly it is the fight of faith. We also noted that this fight is described as "good" in more than one place.


We perhaps can get a better perspective on it being "good" when we remember this verse:


For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. ~ I John 5:4


Heavenly Father, help us to remember this verse and walk in it more fully as we gather to worship this morning.




As we participated in communion yesterday, we were reminded of this verse:


For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come. ~ I Corinthians 11:26


We know the resurrection is important as it was the Father's seal of approval on the sacrifice of Christ, but partaking of communion specifically shows forth the death of Christ.


This is rejoicing ground for all people - the sacrifice for sin has been made that God accepts. We too accept that sacrifice and put our faith in that - not any works of righteousness that we have done.



Do you remember the "three crosses" movement years ago. Do you still see those today? They are a great testimony but not much is said about them or if it is continuing. Check out the site and particularly the history if you are interested. According to the site, Virginia has 131 clusters of them.






We rejoice with those in Cleveland regarding the women who had been missing for 10 years. We pray concerning all the things that will now need to happen in light of this. Regarding prayer in this matter we note this verse:


Ye also helping together by prayer for us, that for the gift bestowed upon us by the means of many persons thanks may be given by many on our behalf. ~ II Corinthians 1:11


Paul here talks about those helping him and his team with their prayers. If Paul had not written this, do you suppose the people who had prayed for him would have realized that they were doing something to help? Do we realize today how much prayer helps?


The situation mentioned above reminds us how much we need the Spirit's leading in our prayers. Would it surprise us if we found out that prayer was instrumental in the escape of those women? May we take the time and effort to seek the mind and wisdom of the Lord in praying about so many desperate, dangerous and life-threatening situations that are happening in our world.


We determine to be a help in prayer.




Yesterday we noted the verse containing the words "helping by prayer". We cite the following verses just to show the attention of the spiritual realm when prayer is made:


The angel Gabriel appeared to Daniel in regards to his prayer ~ Daniel 9:20-27

In the next chapter we note the spiritual realm very involved in Daniel's prayers and the answer he would get ~ Daniel 10:9-14


In Act 12 we see Peter thrown in prison and prayer was made without ceasing by the church for him. We see angelic intervention and nothing physical could hold him in jail ~ Acts 12:5-17


When Paul and Silas were in prison they prayed and sang praises to God. All bands were loosed and all doors opened ~ 16:23-31


May these verses and others raise our level of level of faith to determine to be effectual and diligent in our praying and learning to pray - that good and God-honoring results might follow.




We could all spruce up


The short definition of spruce up is essentially to make smart and trim. Regardless of whether we are talking about our personal appearance, our home (because company is coming), the overall perception of our business, the image our community presents, or our teenager's room - we understand what it means to spruce up.


We could say that to spruce up is an all-out assault on sloppiness. Certainly there are times of informality and we can "let our hair down" on occasions. Yet it brings a sense of accomplishment, improvement, and fulfillment when we knock that sloppiness out and we demonstrate quality and respectability.


Christians especially should recognize that the outward presentation is often a reflection of inward reality. On the inside we can be anything from "dumpy" to "excellent". That is why constant maintenance is required. The Old Testament tells us to guard our heart because out of it flow the issues (forces) of life ~ Proverbs 4:23.  Jesus in the New Testament explained that people out of the good treasure of the heart bring forth good things and vice versa ~ Matthew 12:35.


We are often appalled at how standards have dropped, quality is hard to find, and good behavior and manners are rarely demonstrated. Each of us can start where we are to change this and spruce up a little. We could call it a good spring cleaning.




Do you remember this song:


It only takes a spark to get a fire going
And soon all those around can warm up in the glowing
That’s how it is with God’s love
Once you’ve experienced it
You’ll spread His love to everyone
You’ll want to pass it on


Did you sing it in youth group or as a special? It brings back a lot of memories for many people.

Can you recall the other verses:


What a wondrous time is spring
When all the trees are budding
The birds begin to sing
The flowers start their blooming
That’s how it is with God’s love
Once you’ve experienced it
You’ll want to sing, it’s fresh like spring
You’ll want to pass it on

I wish for you my friend
This happiness that I’ve found
You can depend on Him
It matters not where you’re bound
I’ll shout it from the mountain top
I want the world to know
The Lord of Love has come to me

I want to pass it on


May we remember especially to "Pass It On"!




We give thanks to God today for our mothers. We pray they have a blessed and joyous day.

May the love of God continue to be reflected in the eyes and hearts of mothers - we rise up today and call you blessed ~ Proverbs 31:28




We know that yesterday was a special day for mothers and Mother's Day was a central theme of activity. We can be a special blessing to mothers by remembering them regularly.


Let us take time to find out how we can lighten a load or bear a burden in the lives of our mothers. We would honor them and demonstrate we care when we do something extra on a consistent basis. May this become our habit and lifestyle regarding our mothers and for others!




Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. ~  Philippians 3:13-14


Many have commented that through Christ, both Paul and the rest of us can put the bad things of the past behind us. That is true but it can also apply to things we may consider good or positive. We cannot rest on the laurels of yesterday - though they may continue to bear fruit and we rejoice.


But today needs tending to with God-given responsibilities - we need our daily bread. We need to continue to press on as Paul writes above. We decide daily to live the Christian life, be a doer of the Word of God, and desire "That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;" ~ Colossians 1:10


We are grateful that we can leave our bad behind, we are thankful for any good foundation we have laid in the past, but today and each day ahead we determine to "...run the race that is set before us" ~ Hebrews 12:1


There is no time like the present to either begin or continue this journey with God.




Many are familiar with the "full armor of God" verses in Ephesians - through sermons, dramas, VBS themes, and reading it on our own. We often tend to leave out the last part.


We readily recognize things like helmets, shields and swords. After we take the helmet and sword we see in verse 18: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;


Perhaps this is a reason we are not very successful in our wrestling that we are told about in verse 12. Praying is very much a part of our weaponry, a way of using our sword as a means of attack. We are reminded of what Jesus said in regards to dealing with a certain evil spirit: This kind does not come out except by prayer and fasting ~ Matthew 17:21 and Mark 9:29


We ask God give us wisdom in the use of this part of our armor - our praying!




Let Us Continue


By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. ~ Hebrews 13:15


These verses remind us to continue::


Jesus said to continue in His word ~ John 8:31


(John 15:9)  As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.


(Acts 13:43 KJV)  Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God.


(Acts 14:22)  Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.


(Rom 11:22 KJV)  Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.


(Col 4:2 KJVContinue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;


( (Heb 13:1 KJVLet brotherly love continue.


All of these things we are to continue and as David said, His praise shall continually be in my mouth.




Most Sunday school classes for children and youth groups emphasize memorization of scripture. Let us not stop this practice just because we are adults. We still note:


Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. ~ Psalm 119:105


Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. ~ Psalm 119:11




Yesterday's post emphasized the word of God giving us guidance, being a light to our path, and keeping us from sin. We note that words have determined the path that all of us have followed in one way or another.

Words (or ideas if you like that term better) have come to us and we have embraced them. We have determined our careers from them, where we have decided to live, if we chose to marry, the activities we have become involved with, etc.


We have shaped our lives around the words we have embraced. It is a powerful demonstration of why we should put the word of God first place.




Many learned this at Vacation Bible School:


Holy Bible, Book divine,
Precious treasure, thou art mine;
Mine to tell me whence I came;
Mine to teach me what I am.


We remind ourselves of this precious treasure God has given us as we gather to worship this morning.




For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. ~ II Corinthians 10:12


Notice the interesting beginning: We dare not do this...  It is a strong admonition.


How well we know this comparing ourselves among ourselves is something our young people particularly struggle with. Older adults often have seen the folly of doing such and hopefully it is less of a temptation. Yet it is good word for people of all ages.


We can certainly admire and thank God for people who may stand out for a Godly reason. But we also know that anyone can slip, and our standard of both conduct and true admiration is the Lord Jesus Christ. Our goal is to please Him and also to let our light shine so that others may be drawn to our Lord.


It has been said that when neither praise nor criticism can shake our foundation and determination to serve the Lord with our best, we are well on our way to walking in maturity and humbleness of mind. May we desire to be His vessels of honor.




~ Food for thought and action


A good leader usually develops his skill while being a good servant


He that cannot obey, cannot command. ~ Benjamin Franklin

You cannot do everything, but you can do something. Therefore, intentionally do something good for someone today.

Aren't you glad Jesus gave 100%

Lord please show me what is most important for my life today.




We know this time of year is one of rejoicing for many - graduation! It is a time to recognize accomplishments and looking forward to the future.


We pray all the graduates would act responsibly especially with parties and activities that come after the graduation ceremonies. To parents: Even though your graduates may think of themselves as adults, step up and continue to be parents during this time to keep them safe,


We rejoice with our graduates and pray you have a safe and enjoyable celebration - may you fulfill God's calling in your life with joy.




With so many people hurting, may we take the time in some way to show we care. One of the easiest ways to do this is to take our time and use it to help others. Let us give our time to help meet a need of someone else.


As we are preparing for Memorial Day weekend, it would be particularly fitting to do something for a veteran or someone currently in the service. May we do something to show them that they are appreciated.




As Memorial Day weekend is here, we note a scripture talking about Cornelius:


And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God. ~ Acts 10:4


It is interesting what brings "memorial" status with God ~ prayers and alms. Alms are not just money; it is the giving of ourselves, our abilities and time to others and Godly causes. All of us can do these things.


We do not necessarily do these things to build or warrant any type of memorial, but it is nice to know that God is watching and would remember them on our behalf.


Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free. ~ Ephesians 6:8




As we gather together this morning and remember those who have sacrificed so much for others we note the words of Jesus telling His disciples to love one another and then the verse that He would fulfill:


Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. ~ John 15:13


May we determine to do this in any way in order to glorify our heavenly Father.



We are so grateful to all who serve to protect us. We enjoy the freedom today to have picnics, music and fellowship because our men and women continue to provide it for us.


From scripture we are reminded to: Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. ~ Galatians 5:1


We know this verse is talking about our spiritual freedom that Christ has provided. But out of this has come the freedom we enjoy in the United States. We certainly need to stand fast in this liberty that we have been blessed to enjoy in America.




We know that Memorial Day is generally considered the kickoff to summer. It is a time of fun around the water with swimming, fishing and boating. May we all exercise good judgment and common sense that there be no accidents or tragedies.


We are thankful heavenly Father for recreation and that You have given us: richly all things to enjoy ~ I Timothy 6:17. We ask that You watch over us, keep us safe, and that we make wise decisions.


We pray that Jesus Christ be Lord over our summer and give us opportunities to be a blessing.




When we show others that we are good listeners, we demonstrate our care and respect for them. At times we may not agree with their point of view, but we can respectfully listen. How can we properly respond if we do not take the time to hear their position?


We communicate a lot by the way we listen - perhaps as much as we communicate when we are speaking.


We are told to be ready to always give an answer for the hope that is within us ~ I Peter 3:15. We are better able to give a good answer if we will first listen.




A well-respected speaker recently discussed the topic of "urgency". He began with the statement: It will either come from the outside or the inside.


We know things can come in this world at a moment's notice - a phone call, someone at the door, a situation when you are in your vehicle, out with the children, etc. These things can take all the attention, demand action, and can often stress our emotions.


As Christians, we should know that God may put something on our hearts that He wants done "with urgency". It may be an unction to pray, to check on someone/something, or to implement a course of action.


One of the best things we can do is to ask God to help us deal wisely with any urgency that comes. We know that it can be something new and something we have never dealt with before.

Lord help us not to fall apart but give us a plan to deal with things successfully.


We are reminded of so many uncertainties in this life. May we always rely on the One who is sure and steadfast, remember He has given us the Spirit, He has promised to never leave us or forsake us, and He loves us perfectly.




A recent post by Kirk Cameron was entitled: Victory Begins At Home


The article talks about the battle for the minds of our children and how that must begin at home.


The title of the article took us in another direction. For those of us who are married, we know that when things are not right at home it is difficult to function well.


There is no place like home we are told. When things are not right there, especially between husbands and wives, we sense very little victory in our lives and it is hard to concentrate on anything else.


This should help us recognize how important the marriage relationship is. It should also motivate us to do everything thing we can to keep things victorious.


May each one of us now think of a way to especially bless our spouse today. If you are not married, you could think of something to do that would especially bring a blessing to your home.




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