Daily Word Archives

What Open Door posts on Facebook - September 2013




We should remember that it does not surprise God when we do not get it right. There will likely be flaws in whatever we set out to accomplish. He first wants to see our hearts - do we desire to get it right or do we just shrug it off?


When we see our children striving with all they have to please us and obey, it is very easy to heap mercy, grace, and good instruction on them. When we see the opposite, we know that primarily they are hurting themselves.


This natural example helps us in our relationship with God our Father. He reminds us to: Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. ~ Proverbs 4:23


May we check our hearts daily.




We thank everyone for their work, efforts, support and participation yesterday in our baptism service and fellowship afterward. We pray God's special blessing and guidance on those who were baptized and for their commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ.


We so appreciate everyone for all they do for our church, school, outreach ministries, and for our community. We pray you enjoy this day in light of your labors.




On this 3rd day of the month we remember Psalm 3. We are grateful that there is indeed help for us in God:


A Psalm of David, when he fled from Absalom his son. LORD, how are they increased that trouble me! many are they that rise up against me.


Many there be which say of my soul, There is no help for him in God. Selah.


But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head.


I cried unto the LORD with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy hill. Selah.


I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the LORD sustained me.


I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, that have set themselves against me round about.


Arise, O LORD; save me, O my God: for thou hast smitten all mine enemies upon the cheek bone; thou hast broken the teeth of the ungodly.


Salvation belongeth unto the LORD: thy blessing is upon thy people. Selah.




Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. ~ Matthew 7:13-14


In the natural we understand that there are certain ways to do things that bring the desired results. If we deviate from the directions or mandates given, there is failure. This can involve the instructions to putting something together or operating our new Smartphone.


There is no use in having a tantrum or getting angry - just follow the directions. Certainly we have all been there when this is easier said than done.


Our point is: there are directions, qualifications, and specifics for doing and enjoying almost everything in this life.


So also are the things of God. There are things we must do to come to God, be born again, and become a part of the family of God. The good news is that anyone can do it - just follow the directions.


There are a number of scriptures that tell how to do this. The proclamation of the gospel should always include giving these directions to people.




Here is a good question: If you were to do something perfectly, what would that mean?


This question takes a little time to really consider. Further, who would decide whether it was perfect?


The question is raised in light of the fact that in this world things are constantly changing. If there was something perfect, would it be perfect a few weeks from now? Was the perfection just a particular act, a thing created or done, a plan, blueprint, or something that fixed a problem?


Hopefully you can see that the concept of perfection in this natural world is hard to nail down. We do not expect people to be perfect, but we appreciate when they give their best.


We are back to the attitudes and motives of our hearts. We note the zeal that the Apostle Paul exhibited in his service to the Lord. We further note his words:


            And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving             thanks to God and the Father by him. ~ Colossians 3:17


            And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; ~ Colossians 3:23


May we demonstrate this attitude in our service and in the things that we do - whether to the Lord or to our fellow man. This would be a great testimony to the Christ in us the hope of glory




And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. ~ Luke 19:13


With whatever God has given you, be the best occupant you can be.




This past Sunday we sang a hymn many learned while growing up in church. It still challenges us to embrace, live, and share its message:


Years I spent in vanity and pride,
Caring not my Lord was crucified,
Knowing not it was for me He died
On Calvary.



Mercy there was great, and grace was free;
Pardon there was multiplied to me;
There my burdened soul found liberty
At Calvary.


By God’s Word at last my sin I learned;
Then I trembled at the law I’d spurned,
Till my guilty soul imploring turned
To Calvary.


Now I’ve giv’n to Jesus everything,
Now I gladly own Him as my King,
Now my raptured soul can only sing
Of Calvary!


Oh, the love that drew salvation’s plan!
Oh, the grace that brought it down to man!
Oh, the mighty gulf that God did span
At Calvary!




Isaiah 40:31 ~ But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength


In our society today, we often do not like to wait. We want things done quickly.

The scriptures say a lot about having patience yet we may not show it very much.

As we come before the throne of God, we should not have the attitude of zipping in and out.


We come to fellowship, to grow and develop, to mature in the things of God, to be refreshed and enjoy His presence, to ask for His touch, to minister unto Him with praise and worship.


This is waiting on Him and giving Him first place. The time we give is up to us - yet it should demonstrate the importance we place on our time with our heavenly Father.




Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; ~ I Peter 1:18


It is interesting that Peter says silver and gold are corruptible things. The world often considers these precious. Peter then tells us what is precious in verse 19:


But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:


What can wash away my sin - nothing but the blood of Jesus. When we realize this we will recognize that the blood of Jesus is indeed precious.


Have you been to Jesus for the cleansing power

Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb

Are you fully trusting in His grace this hour

Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb


And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, ~ Revelation 1:5


It is difficult to find a place to stop when you start looking at the blood of Jesus.




I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, ~ Ephesians 4:1


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


That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory. ~ I Thessalonians 2:12


The path that these verses talk about is not one that we are just going to stumble upon. It is one that will take effort both to locate and stay on.


This speaks more than just being saved and saying I am the family of God.  They speak of more than just existing as a child of God.


Biblical Christianity challenges the way we behave, how we live, and the way we walk and conduct ourselves.


May we accept the challenge and live like we desire to please our heavenly Father.




We remember the attack on our country that happened 12 years ago today. We pray for those still personally affected by it and still dealing with it in any way. We continue to pray for our nation's protection and for leadership that would guide this country in the right way.


As Christians we can desire to both remember and to help in any way that we can. All of us likely have vivid memories of that day and the aftermath.


Remembering will have its greatest benefit if it helps us both do better and be better because of or in spite of what happened. But we cannot allow ourselves to live on the 9/11 date - it should in no way define us.


Jesus said there would be tribulation in this world - we will deal with, see, and experience things we would rather avoid. It is a sobering reminder of the consequences of sin.


Therefore we are thankful for the good things and good times we do enjoy in this life and look forward to all God has promised us in the future. May God help us to more effectively share this with those around us and bring the light of the glorious gospel to those who are hurting.


There is a power that comes from God

A strength He gives within

It brings a joy and courage to face

A world of darkness and sin.


May Christ in you the hope of glory

Empower your life each day

To be a witness of the wonderful story

Of the Lamb of God Who took our sins away.


This life will pass a vapor as the Bible says. Through Jesus we can look forward to an awesome eternity.




God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah. ~ Psalm 46:1-3


The day after the attack, 12 years ago today, the sun rose and all of us in some way faced the demands of another day - regardless of what happened the day before. It almost does not seem fair - whether we are talking about 9/11 or the recent tragedies in other places.


This natural life keeps going and it does not seem to budge even when we are grieving. Therefore we look to the God of all comfort and the peace that Jesus said He would give us. We are much more able to deal with the difficulties of life when we are at peace. That has to come first on the inside.


As we all face the days ahead with different circumstances, we remember the chorus of the song:

God of My Days:


You're the God of my days, King of my nights
Lord of my laughter, sovereign in sorrow
You're the Prince of my praise

The love of my life
You never leave me You are faithful
God of my days


We trust that every moment is in His hands.




Perhaps nothing makes us feel worse than when we act (or react) in an unchristian way.  Bad behavior should concerns us and we should want to make such things right.


One thing we can do is to work on ourselves and honestly take stock on the types of things that push our buttons. We can begin by working on the "not too intense" areas and situations first. It helps when we can see even a little progress and results.


May God help us all to keep a watch over our mouths ~ Psalm 141:3


Here is a good verse for all of us:


Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: ~ James 1:19




Have you ever built a house, had one built, or been involved in such a construction adventure? For many it is one filled with stress, financial pressure, and a lot of time-consuming activities.


Building a home is one that requires a lot of planning and attention to detail. But from a Christian standpoint we remember:


Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. ~ Psalm 127:1


We remember also that there is the building of the house and then there is the building and establishing it as a home. Both are important.


The point we want to emphasize is planning. There should be a lot of that in our lives as opposed to haphazard decision making. Please remember to pray and seek the wisdom of God particularly in all major decisions. We can also pray to walk in good common and spiritual sense in our everyday activities.




We pray God help us see opportunities that He makes available to us - especially to help or be a blessing to others. As we gather in church this morning, this would be a great place to look.




Each congregation has its own outlook and beliefs toward the music ministry it presents. It is fascinating to look at what has happened with praise and worship in the church over the last 50 years. The tools are available to make it just about any way you would - from simple to elaborate.


We are thankful for all of it that would honor God and be a blessing to the people. Yet in all the elaborate, complex and even awe-inspiring things that technology allows us to do, we have found that people connect still with the music and songs that present the truth in a straightforward and simple way. Songs like:


Jesus love me this I know, for the bible tells me so....


Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me...


Or this chorus:


To be like Jesus, to be like Jesus

My desire is to be like Him

All through life's journey

From earth to glory

My desire is to be like Him


It is exciting to delve into the deep things of God, but it also comforting to know the power, the blessing of God, and the Christian life in the simple things.




We were reminded Sunday of how important joy is in the life of a Christian. We will have tribulation in this world as Jesus said, but it should not define us or dictate our response. Jesus told us to be of good cheer and prayed that His joy be fulfilled in us. Other verses on joy:


For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. ~ Romans 14:17


Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost. ~ Romans 15:13


Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand. ~ II Corinthians 1:24


What an interesting description of an aspect of ministry - to a be a helper of someone's joy. We understand helping in general, we understand trying to comfort and be a blessing. May we also understand how to bring joy in addition to the other things. When we go our separate ways, let us do our best to leave the other person/people in joy.




When we had sport's teams at our school, a constant challenge was to instill Christian aggression into players - how to beat your opponent with skill and a Christian attitude. That is not easy, especially when players were the target of aggression that was not Christian. Granted - our players could get over on the other side as well. This was just a part of the learning process as teenagers.


Whether you are a parent or a leader of a team, being able to instill the right kind of aggression (or initiative) is a true art. Some of us adults are still working on this.


As Christians we have high standards to maintain as we engage the culture and aggressively live and present the gospel.


May God help us to learn the skills to do this in the right way. 




Yesterday we spoke about giving our children guidance in what we called "Christian aggression" - whether in athletic competition or everyday life. How can we demonstrate Godliness in our effort to be outgoing, standing up for what is right, and confronting that which is wrong?


We know we need God's guidance and we are reminded of the verse which tells us to speak the truth in love ~ Ephesians 4:15


We consider an offshoot in our post today. As we lay  down guidelines and tell our children the way we want them to act and respond, are we demonstrating the things we are asking of them? Are we living the same standards?


This is a question for each of us to answer, look into, and ask for God's help to be doers of the word we are giving our children.




Most of us have likely heard the saying: Don't sweat the small stuff. Because our lives are so busy, many can relate to this admonition. We have to choose what is most important and the things we should deal with at the moment.


Jesus said we should make sure not to strain at a gnat an swallow a camel ~ Matthew 23:24.


We would make the following general statement: Whatever you would intentionally do or commit to should have a good purpose or goal in mind. Sometimes things happen that we must deal with - we have no control over these types of events that may come.


But if we decide to do something or go a certain route, it should be for a good reason or anticipated result. We could also ask the question - How easily can I get out of or change what I started should I need to?


We believe this is one good way to look at decisions and opportunities that come before us.




Yesterday we posted that we should have a good reason for the things that we purposely get into or do. On the other side, we should also have a good reason when we say "no".


Of course there are daily decisions that may not have long-lasting consequences - I am not wearing that today, we'll not go tonight but probably tomorrow night, or I just cannot handle that particular thing this week.


But the things that we say "no" to because of principle, because of our faith, or because of our standards of right and wrong should be ones that we are ready to defend. Many of us know that if we have teenagers, that is a great skill to learn. The reasoning "because I say so" does work, but we should desire better than that in teaching our children.


May God help to give a good and right answer about why we say "yes" and why we say "no".




What if, just for any reason, this was our last day in church. If we think about it, we should attend and participate like each service could be our last. With that in mind, let us make the most of today.




Our opening hymn yesterday was an old favorite: 'Tis so Sweet to Trust in Jesus


We are so grateful that we do not have to trust in our own works or what we have done to be acceptable to God. But we do trust in the works of righteousness that Jesus has done and now we can be accepted in and through Him (Ephesians 1:6)


In verse 13 of that chapter, Paul writes that after hearing the gospel, having trusted in Christ, we have been sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.


Who better to trust for both today and eternity than the Lord Jesus Christ.




Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine - what a wonderful thing to be able to say.


Acts 17:31 ~  Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.


Col 2:2 ~ That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;


1 Thessalonians 1:5 ~ For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.


Heb 6:11 ~ And we desire that every one of you do show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end:


Heb 10:22 ~ Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.




For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness. ~ Psalm 84:10


Whatever the circumstances, our desire heavenly Father is to be with You. May the plans we make and the paths we take be ones that You approve and ones You are with us in.


We trust in You with all of our heart and we acknowledge You in all our ways - thank you for directing our paths ~ Proverbs 3:6




An interesting scripture about grace in the Old Testament:


Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it. ~ Zechariah 4:7


Please read the whole chapter to see the entire concept and be blessed. Suffice it to say that Zerubbabel had run into problems. What would we do: rebuke the devil?, bind principalities and powers?, ask God why this is happening to me?, call a special meeting for prayer and fasting? ...


There is nothing wrong with anything in the list above yet God gives us a little insight into the power of grace and speaking it forth in regards to a situation. Here is something for us to meditate on and gain greater understanding.


In whatever situation we find ourselves, we can ask God how we can use, partake of, and demonstrate the grace of God. If God's grace was sufficient for Paul in all he dealt with, surely it can work and make an impact on whatever we are dealing with.


There is nothing wrong with shouting Grace!




On this 27th day of the month we remember a helpful verse:


A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished. ~ Proverbs 27:12


In this day and time, we pray God especially help us foresee any evil in our path. May we recognize that which is wrong especially when it has the appearance of being right. Someone who is trying to do something wrong will usually endeavor to hide it or portray it as right. May we have Godly skill to know the difference.


But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. ~ Hebrews 5:14




As Christians, one of our goals each day is to live out the new life that is within us and make a difference for the kingdom of God. Sometimes our days are such that we cannot envision or develop something exciting or particularly noteworthy.


We remember the words of Jesus:


That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. ~ Matthew 6:4


The things we do need not be open, public, or something that makes a big noise. When we look to just do something for someone else - meet a need or lighten their load, we are sowing good seed into their lives, our life and into the kingdom of God.


So we do not have to look far in order to consider: Who can I do something for today?




In thinking of the difficulties in this life we know the following:


1. We do not have the answer to every question

2. We do not know all the facts

3. We do not know the exact stand to take every time


The point is that we face a lot of uncertainty. In every such situation we could say the following:


I side with Jesus - I'm with Him. The WWJD movement put that out to the world. Now WWYD - what would you do?


While we may not always know exactly what to do, our words and actions should demonstrate that we are on the Lord's side. May God show us how to do this effectively.




It is hard to believe that we are three-fourths of the way through the year. A great challenge we have each day is where to allocate our time and decide what to be involved in.


May God help us to use our time wisely - and to acknowledge and honor Him in all our ways.

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