Posted by: Josh Gibson | May 31, 2010

Memorial Day: Twenty-Ten

May 31st Memorial Day. This morning I watched a home video of Drew Carey’s comedy tour to entertain the troops in ’04. Just getting back from the middle east myself alot of vislual images on the video are very similar to what I experienced a just weeks before, minus the war. The people, the food, the terrain all mainly the same. I just want to say that I appreciate the troops for what they do. Being over in the Middle East I experienced the heat and dehydrated conditions, and the hardship of communicating with people. The movie I watched today along with the movie called “Taking Chance” I watched last night has given me a heightened sense of awareness for what goes on involving the armed forces. Weather you support the war or not, please pray for and support the troops. Alot of people will miss the point of Memorial Day as people are off work, resting, spending time with family…but be greatful that you are not having to look over your shoulder every minute and pray for the men and women that do risk their lives and do so bravely. “God Bless America”

I recommened you watch “Taking Chance” its a movie about a military escort and his appreciation for this country as he takes the remains of a young 20 year old soldier home.

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Posted by: Josh Gibson | March 15, 2010

Amazed at a relentless GOD

Last week God used myself and 13 others from my church to go to a University in another Country to witness to the students there, make relationships and show God’s love.

4 people received a Great God to be LORD of their life. Many others were very close to excepting the Gospel and surredering to God. In HIS timing it will happen. We claim that those souls will come to God. All we did was make ourself AVAILABLE for God to use and be PURPOSEFUL about waht we did, whether sports, lunch, or random talkings. We we intent in our purpose of Evangelizing and Discipling.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Tonight at my University 38 people recieved that very same powerful God. Numerous others made the choice to quit living a warm, weak Christian life, and be focused on HIM.

We sang “Jesus Messiah” three times throught the service. So of the people that got saved are the same people I walk past each and everyday. The same ones that I say “hey, how are ya?” then go on my way.
You know what that tells me… It tells me that there is so much more that we can be doing. To be purposeful on my Campus as I was at another University in a different country. There is no difference… there are hurting and dieing people that need to be saved and have Jesus come into their live.

After seeing a truer worship that I have seen in awhile, seeing the same song (even though there were no instuments) people were focused on God and not on am I decent while worshipping or who is watching/what will they think or can i kneel or raise my hands or clap. John 4:23-25 NIV “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the TRUE WORSHIPERS will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.”“The Difference is night and day.”

Sometimes we aren’t AMAZED at a relentless God like we should be. All throughout the Gospels people were AMAZED at Jesus’ Knowledge… his teachings… at him.
Check it out…
Matthew 7:28When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching,
Matthew 8:27The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
Mark 1:22The people were amazed at his teaching, because he taught them as one who had authority, not as the teachers of the law.

ARE YOU STILL AMAZED?

Posted by: Josh Gibson | February 22, 2010

“What Must I Do…”

Acts:16:22-34
Paul and Silas in Thyatira

Acts:16:22-24 Paul and Silas were being beat for doing what God had called them to, it would have been easy to quit after this encounter or complain about the situation.

Verse 25 Is so unimaginable to most of us, singing and praising God anyways?
Think about putting yourself in Paul’s place…not only could you take the beatings, do the right thing in staying the jail, but would you/and do you have the same impact on others as Paul did on the Jailer? For him to ask, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Others are watching, by the way you live and by what you do, are others able to see God.

Jailer asks verse 29 “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
The urgency, the passion, the desire he had for God/to know him that he came to Paul and Silas seeking out what he must do.

Verses 31-24 talks of his household coming to Christ

Just think about the influence you have for a moment. Think about the people that know you, the people that see you most; do these people see Christ in you?

It’s not often that we get to come upon a person who comes to us with the need of the Gospel, praise God it happened. We have to go seek chances to share the Gospel, being intentional. Taking the Gospel to a lost world that usually doesn’t know they are dying. We need to wait upon the Lord, but not to the point that we become cold or lazy, no recognizing opportunities. Don’t just sit around waiting for doors of opportunities to be open, God has already given us commandments (not suggestions) to be doing until/if he calls us to doing something else, entrusted us to do something more.

Ask God for a time to share today, but also pray that your life would reflect God so much that others would come seeking, saying “Sirs(or mama), what must I do to be saved?”

The Love of Christ is to good to not share.
Seize the Oppertunites

Posted by: Josh Gibson | February 12, 2010

In My Father’s House

John 14

1″Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms; (Dwelling Places: NASB) (Mansions: KJV) if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 4You know the way to the place where I am going.”

-The way to the place that he prepares=
5Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
6Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7If you really knew me, you would know[b] my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”

The way to God is through Jesus Christ. It’s by the way of the cross. There are many religions that don’t believe that Jesus the messiah, and are therefore still looking for the Messiah to come.
He promised that he would go and prepare a place for us. That’s the thing that, it’s a place…what if that is all it is? I have heard many times people saying to others “I hope my mansion is beside yours in Heaven.” Ok, that is sweet and all, but does it really matter who we are beside? Or even if it is a mansion at all?

Some translations of the Bible say Dwelling Places; I like that for the sole fact that dwelling place could mean many things. What if in Heaven all we have is a dwelling place- a house or even if it’s a dorm room? Wow, what about that?

The word Mansion was used my King James because he already lived in a great house, he didn’t want anything less. What if it is just a place?

What if in Heaven, all things are perfect, there is No crime, everything is good, there is No presence of evil, No more night, No more sickness or disease, No death or crying or pain… and in the midst of all this God was not there? Would you be satisfied with that?

God is most glorified in me when I am most satisfied in him.” –John Piper

God should be what fuels us, and he should be what ultimately satisfies us; if he does, it should not matter if we have to live in a dorm room in Heaven.

Mansion or not, God is good!

Posted by: Josh Gibson | February 10, 2010

Come, Follow Me

18As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19″Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 At once they left their nets and followed him.
21Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

What is the significance of this? Well Christ called and these guys were willing to follow. –I see the Come as a command in verse 19. Christ demands our life, our all; it is a choice to respond to his calling.
–I also see that Follow is what Jesus wanted the guys to do. So many times we try and lead or tell God what we are going to do, but we need to be able to follow the direction of God.
– I see a comma between Come and Follow. This means that Jesus called them to Come then Follow, not to come and follow at the same time. To paint a picture, Jesus doesn’t call us and walk away wanting for us to follow, he gives us the chance to come and once we come in fellowhip with him, we will want to follow him. Its a choice as the Disciples had.
– I see “I will make you fisher of men.” When we become saved we don’t turn into super Christians over night, this is the process of sanctification. We can’t do things on our own God makes us who we need to be.
– I see the immediate obedience of the guys. We all know they will be disciples, but these guys were really unsure of what is ahead, they left everything they owned and knew.

Also the story of “The Rich Young Man” we see similar aspects.
Matthew (19:16–30) “If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give…come, follow me”
The man didn’t do as God called, for he possessed great wealth in his life, he went away from his encounter with Jesus pretty much depressed.

If we are willing to come and follow Christ he will make all things new.
Is God calling you to leave something behind that is seemingly the only that you know in life to follow him?

Posted by: Josh Gibson | January 18, 2010

N30X…New in 30 days

Day 5 Starting in Mark

Recap from days 1-4

Matthew chapters 1-28

Probable author -The Apostle Matthew, a tax collector
Date-early date 50s AD or between late 50s – 80s AD.

Genealogy of Jesus (1:1–17) Abraham-David-Messiah = 42 generations
His Birth (1:18—2:12)
The Beginnings of Jesus’ Ministry (3:1—4:11) –3 years of ministry
His Baptism (3:13–17) –John “He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove his sandals”
His Temptation by the Devil in the wilderness (4:1–11)
Jesus’ Ministry in Galilee (4:12—14:12)
The Sermon on the Mount (chs. 5–7) -go read this as a sermon all together
A Collection of Miracles (chs. 8–9)
The Calling of the 12 Apostles (ch. 10)
Ministry throughout Galilee (chs. 11–12)
The Parables of the Kingdom (ch. 13) –Sow and Reap, Tares and Wheat, Treasure, Pearl, Dragnet.
Jesus’ Last Ministry in Galilee (17:22—18:35)
Prediction of Jesus’ Death (17:22–23)
The Rich Young Man (19:16–30) -“…to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give…come, follow me
The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard (20:1–16) -great parable telling of
Prediction of Jesus’ Death (20:17–19)
The Entry of Jesus into Jerusalem as King (21:1–11) -singing “Hosanna to the son of David”
The Anointing of Jesus’ Feet (26:1–13) -Alabaster Box of ointment
The Arrest, Trials and Death of Jesus (26:14—27:66)
The Resurrection (ch. 28)
The Great Commission (28:16–20) -“Go and make Disciples…”

Jesus healed the sick and diseased, but there faith is Key throughout these verses/was the reason he did so.
Hope everyone is able to get involved in reading God’s word in some fashion or form. Set a schedule.

Posted by: Josh Gibson | January 13, 2010

What Sitcks, is What Matters

“Following Christ isn’t something that can be done halfheartedly or on the side. It is not a label we can display when it is useful. It must be central to everything we do and are.” Francis Chan, Crazy Love

I think that as Americans we have it too easy. We grow up no really having to fully trust or have faith to make decisions. Check this out… How many of you have had to really have faith about were you are going to get your next meal or where you are going to sleep tonight? I know that there are other things in life that seem to fill our time and worries, but how many of those are things that we brought on ourselves…with our personal desire for more. How much of that is really needed or will last when it really comes down to it.

I heard a story about a guy in seminary and a question a professor asked his class. The professor asked them “What are you doing now, that causes you to have faith?” The guy the story is about said I honestly couldn’t think of anything. He said that if he was to some how lose Christ today, his life wouldn’t change much. Most of these guys had sold out to Christ called for his purpose, but the guy couldn’t think of anything that he really had to rely on God for.

Wow, can you think of anything that causes you to have faith? Really think, not stuff like… I have faith that my car start and get me to work.
I believe we need to do some real soul searching, it all goes back to something bigger.
Faith is the essence of the Christian belief. I’m speaking to myself also, by no means do I have everyting figured out even though I write this blog. Pray that God will expand you view of having faith.
Comfort sometimes breeds contempt and contempt breeds no reliance on God.
God never promised us Contemptment (except to be in him) or Safety for that matter.

Romans 8:28
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Posted by: Josh Gibson | January 11, 2010

Blog by Terry P. Carlton

“A Plea to the Church-The God Who Is” by Terry Carlton

“I have been around the church my whole life. I love the church. I’ve seen the ugly, the bad, and the good. It’s what God has called me to be obedient to because I am his follower. I love the church because he has called me to minister to it. I want to take some time over the next few weeks and make some pleas with the church because quite frankly you are losing a lot of people. My plea today is this:

Stop focusing on the God who was and relentlessly pursue the God who is. I’ve been around the conservative movement my whole life and growing up in the late 80’s and 90’s you heard a lot about the conservative resurgence that took place in the 50’s and 60’s. There was a big wave of mass evangelism going on during this era that flooded the church. People were coming to Christ by the droves, the pews and altars were full, and people were faithful and passionate.

There is nothing wrong with looking to the past as a rich source of strength and encouragement. But if the past never compels you to do anyting in the present then you are bound for failure. “If we are not progressively moving in the present toward the future then we will be stuck in the past.” Let me flesh this out– What I find in the church is a great priority placed on what God did rather than what he is doing and can do. I respect the move of God that took place in the 60’s but I wasn’t there. The people that I minister to were not there. Thousands of people sitting in our pews were not there either. What I’ve found is that the church is putting so much emphasis on what God did back then, that we expect everything to look like it did back then as well. If our music isn’t the same, if our formalities and structures aren’t the same, if our dress isn’t the same, if our methodologies aren’t the same then God is just STUCK. Let me plead with you:

1.God cannot be put into an equation or formula-I do believe there is such a thing as irreverent worship of God but no man can tell me that A+B=THE MOVE OF GOD. Does God have boundaries and guidelines? Yes, read your Bible! My plea to you is please don’t tell me that just because God did it up big way back then that it has to look that way today. I hardly think that the worship service that took place in 1 Kings 18 at the base of Mt. Caramel remotely resembled the resurgence of 1960.

2.Generations are lost because you are stuck-I believe that the most evident stronghold that this mindset has tainted is our youth. They do not understand the logic of what is promoted within the majority of our churches. Why do you put so much emphasis on what God did, and rarely ever praise him for what he is doing? Does that mean he can’t do that now? Does that mean that he won’t use me? Does that mean that God has already done his most glorious and powerful work? Students are totally lost within the culture of this mindset because it completely ignores what God is currently doing in them. Sure, they look different, talk different, have different interests, they may even desire to worship different, but can you prove that God is not working in the midst of their lives? Does God’s Word limit every culture in every place in every time to a certain method of worship? My plea to you is to move on from the past and relentlessly pursue God today.

3.He is the same yesterday, TODAY, and forever. As I study the implications of worship in the Scriptures, I find that worship is primarily individual and internal. True worship is between the worshipper and God. If I’m not worshipping God daily and consistently then when I engage in a corporate service, I’m really not worshipping. If I’m solely stuck on what God did, how he did it, why he did it and expect that move to look just like it did way back then, my personal worship is dry and thirsty. When we remove our traditional glasses and read the Scriptures with un-biased eyes, we will find a God who never changes. The same God that brought the world into existence; the same God that walked with Enoch; the same God that brought fire down from heaven; the same God that let John lay his head on his chest; the same God that walked on water; the same God that sat in the middle of a house full of sinners; the same God that hung on the Cross and shed his blood for my sins, is the same God I have the privilege to worship and experience today. Sure, the way I experience him and the setting in which I sense his presence will be a little different than Enoch, David, Peter, Paul, and John; yet he is still the same. So I want to focus on the God of today, the God who is-not just who was. My plea is that you will do the same because I may not appreciate all that God did way back then but I know without a doubt he is waiting to do big things TODAY!”

“ Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!” Revelation 4:8

Posted by: Josh Gibson | January 8, 2010

American Idol-atry

Sometimes it seems that when we read or think about idols we picture the Old Testament, we lean toward thinking of “ancient people bowing down to carved wooden statues” as Mark Batterson put it. How silly and foolish of us to think this. Most of us are just refined or modern idolaters. Mark Batterson stated that, “I’m convinced that idolatry is our root spiritual problem. Maybe that’s why it’s the first commandment of ten?”

“In the beginning, God created us in His image. We’ve been creating Him in our image ever since” Batterson. As Americans we have settle for something less than worshiping the Creator, we have found an alternate for god, the proper sense of his name is no longer there.

And here is the complicated thing about our idols. Most idols are not inherently bad things most are good things, but those good things become idols because they become first priority in our lives, and take the place of God. Batterson stated that, “Instead of being the Ultimate End, God become a means to an end.” We want or love something/someone more than we want God and we attempt to use God to get what we believe is most important in live.

So how do you identify an idol?
Here are four idol identifiers: Written by Mark Batterson…

1) What consumes your thoughts? Your daydreams are idol clues.
-If it’s something you think about more than God then it may be an idol.

2) What bad habits do you struggle with? Your addictions are idol clues.
-An idol is something you cannot control. It controls you.

3) What do you spend too much money on? Your spending habits are idol clues.
-Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also!

4) What produces your strongest emotions? Your intense emotions are idol clues.
-If you want to identify an idol, all you have to do is identify your emotional attachments.

“Identifying an idol takes a tremendous amount of soul searching. And you have to be brutally honest. But you cannot tear it down until you name it.” -Mark Batterson

America it’s about time we return to God and allow him to have first place in our live.

The Supremacy of Christ
Colossians 1
15He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. 17He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.

http://www.biblegateway.com NIV version

Posted by: Josh Gibson | January 7, 2010

Blog by Mark Batterson

Is Your Dream Your Idol

“For years I dreamed of speaking at conferences and writing books. And I think both of those desires were God-ordained passions. But they didn’t happen for a long time. And I think the main reason is simple: I wanted it for the wrong reasons. I don’t think you’re ready until you are willing to let the dream die. And when you are willing to let the dream die, God often resurrects it.

I’m certainly not suggesting that my motives are 100% sanctified now. Not there yet. But as I look back and look forward, I realize that many of our dreams never happen for one simple reason. We want it more than we want God. God becomes a means to an end. And our dream, which was meant to be a form of worship to God, becomes our god. This is especially true of pastors. We go into ministry to serve God, but ministry can become a god. Your church becomes your idol. Is your ministry more important to you than God?

God is not a means to your dream. Yes, your God-ordained dreams will never become reality without divine intervention. And God wants it to become reality more than you do. But the dream isn’t the end. God is the end.

Is your dream your god? Or is God your God? God will not be used. God will not be manipulated. God will not be played. If you want what God wants for the wrong reasons it won’t happen. It’s not until you sanctify your motives that God will bless it.

Are you willing to sacrifice Isaac?”

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