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  • 7 hours ago
    Posted by Dion Todd
    The Comforter from Refreshing Hope Ministries on Vimeo. Today I want to talk about the work of the Comforter. Before Jesus’ crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension, He promised the disciples that He would send Someone else to them. He knew that His time on Earth would soon be completed and...
  • 13 hours ago
    Posted by Dion Todd
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  • Sat at 3:01 AM
    Posted by Dion Todd
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Stop Making it Difficult

  • For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay no greater burden on you than these necessary things: that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality, from which if you keep yourselves, it will be well with you. Farewell. Acts 15:28 WEB

    After Jesus ascended to heaven and the gospel began to spread, gentiles (non Jewish people) heard the message and some came to Jesus. They started out joyful and free, so glad to be saved, but soon men came that taught them: 'Unless you are circumcised and keep the law of Moses, you cannot be saved.' This became such a sharp dispute that the Apostles had to meet in Jerusalem to resolve the matter. The letter above was their verdict. The Apostles said: 'We should not make it difficult for those turning to God' (Acts 15:19).

    That is an interesting statement for the first church to have penned: 'We should not make it difficult for those turning to God' for some people were. There seems to be an invisible force, like a gravitational pull, that draws the church back toward legalism. In Acts 15, it was legalistic Christians telling those who had just came to Jesus, that they were not saved at all unless they became like them; But we cannot earn our salvation with good works, it is a free gift that we only have to accept.

    I once went on a road trip for forty days with a preacher, mentor of mine, and he sometimes preached twice a day. I carried his bible and books and luggage for him and ran errands as needed while we visited town after town, and church after church. I never spoke. I just observed. Some of the churches we visited seemed too 'holy' for a sinner to visit at all. Many were filled with an aging population. Actually, they were not filled at all, they were mostly empty.

    The members often seemed to feel like they were 'Super Christians.' They had to pay their dues over the years and a newcomer could only be one of them when they had done likewise. It is like they have God locked in a box, and they will only share Him with whom they deem worthy. It was so strange, because the last little church we left thought God was locked in their box as well.

    Yet God always appears outside of our little boxes for He is not a pet. So many times, I have watched God start using a sinner that just got saved, while the 'holy ones' sat on the bench and watched. Some will tell you that you need to get your life in order first, then you can join the church. When in reality, if you will just come to the Lord Jesus, He will give you the grace to clean your life up and then guide you through living it.

    If you are a follower of Jesus, make it easy for others to come to know Him as well. Drop the rule set and focus on introducing them to a Friend. He will ultimately decide who goes to heaven, not us, so the pressure is off our shoulders. If you are not a follower of Jesus: accept my apologies for the way that He has been presented. For Jesus is much more forgiving, loving, considerate, warm and kind than His followers.

    Prayer: Heavenly Father I pray that You fill my life with abundant grace and help me see beyond the traditions of men. Send Your rain on my life, make me moldable, and teachable. I want to be a part of what You are doing today and to know You in a deeper way. Do not pass me by Lord, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

    Note: "if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land." (2 Chron 7:14). If you have a prayer need, we are here for you! We and the prayer team are ready to lift you up at our private prayer page: RHM Prayer Network


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21 comments
  • 1
Cathy Webb
Cathy Webb Send Your rain on my life, make me moldable, and teachable. I want to be a part of what You are doing today. Thank you, Lord!
Aug 14
  • 1
Marisa Jackson
Marisa Jackson

Amen!!

Aug 14
  • 1
Deborah Alexander
Deborah Alexander

Amen, Amen, & Amen again

Aug 14
  • 1
Schalk  de Beer
Schalk de Beer

Amen Lord

Aug 14
  • 1
Yvette York
Yvette York

Amen

Aug 14
  • 1
Perry Robertson
Perry Robertson

Amen

Aug 14
  • 1
Kay Collinsworth
Kay Collinsworth

Amen Father!

Aug 14
  • 1
Mari Kaufmann
Mari Kaufmann

Do not pass me by Lord. You are the hope of my life. Thank you God. Praise God. Amen. 

Aug 14
  • 1
Dave and Sue Earlywine
Dave and Sue Earlywine

Do not pass us by Jesus,we live for all your glory, Amen 

Aug 14
  • 1
Ed Frye
Ed Frye

Amen Lord! This is a powerful message Pastor Dion!

Aug 14
  • 1
Yada (Wendy)
Yada (Wendy)

 Gravity? Isn't it the constant variances between the seemingly often "seductive" things the synagogues of today often say compared to what the bible says that manifests this dynamic? Then some look and consider and humbly seek assistance understanding, but it seems no leader leading has prepared themselves enough or been prepared for them yet to answer the questions but The One who was supposed to have taught us in the 1st place? Isn't the dynamic then propelled and supported within the text itself indicating only a few will hear Him and understand? (Mt13/purpose of parables) ... and then even more so desperately when the one who hears and perceives, realizes they still can't really hear and understand?... Do you see the logs you're perceiving are crammed in their eyes? Are you able to remove them? John 6.29 ... John 1 points out a punn for Jesus found in Genesis 1. Jesus' Words are full of them. They can be found like hidden treasure by following Him wherever He goes in scripture and seeking understanding about His rhymes. Should someone who thinks he's able go ahead of them to help them or discourage them from hearing? They can't listen to you. The ones who do are only collecting alibis. It says Jesus showed them The Way through. It says He spoke everything to them with His Sayings. You can see them scattering without a shepherd like prophecy says. I just don't understand why leaders don't see them and look deeper and hear all the things He says.

Aug 14
  • 2
Linda Clark
Linda Clark

In jesus name  amen !

Aug 14
  • 2
Wanda Pennington
Wanda Pennington

Amen Jesus. Send your rain on me and make me moldable and  teachable.  

Aug 14
  • 2
Lynn Brown
Lynn Brown

Thank You Jesus, Amen!

Aug 14
  • 2
Jose Simo
Jose Simo

Dear Father I thank You for all You have done for us, that Your grace always touches us to eliminate those traditions that are keeping us from having You as our guide to lead us from temptations, in Jesus name I pray. Amen. Lord You are our guide. 

God bless you Pastor, excellent devotional. Praise the Lord. 

 

Aug 14
  • 2
Liesel  aka  Lisa Wardle
Liesel aka Lisa Wardle

Amen and Amen!!!  Mold me and make me after THY will, oh Lord, my God, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen!

 

Aug 14
  • 1
Wesley Paulus
Wesley Paulus

Amen!

Aug 14
  • 2
Jim Jarrell
Jim Jarrell

Amen! I have found this writting to be true in my life. The only thing I would add is Jesus is more patient with us than I know how to express! That is why you see me say Thank You Lord so often.

Aug 14
  • 1
Joseph Adams, Jr.
Joseph Adams, Jr.

Amen

Aug 14
  • 1
Kathie Byram Lopez
Kathie Byram Lopez

Amen

Aug 15
  • 1
Dana Rozell
Dana Rozell

Amen.

Aug 17