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“He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30 The two most important truth contained within this Scripture is when Jesus is truly recognized, it is His influence and not our own that must take precedence. We are given influence in order to influence others to see and know Him. Some may not remember us, but that is not the most important thing. If they are enabled to see Him and be led by Him, the work of God is complete and the reward in heaven awaits us. Secondly, our moment in the sun is temporary. Ours is to prepare the way for those who will take our place. A good spiritual leader must maintain his sight on eternity yet recognize the continuing work in time. Who will be our successors, and will they exceed us in effectiveness? Fathers must pass the baton or torch to their sons to run the relay race excelling beyond the old record that was previously set. Records are set to be broken. As the knowledge of Jesus Christ increases, there will be a generation that will reach cultures and penetrate places beyond our abilities. But we must train them for the task that lie ahead….

“Let Your work appear to Your servants, and Your glory to their children. And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands for us; yes, establish the work of our hands.” Psalm 90:16-17 To see with our eyes what God is doing is a blessing beyond measure. God allows His servants to see where He is in the midst of confusion and apparent hopelessness. He is there working His plan even when all appears to be still or falling apart all around us. Not alone does His servants see His works, they are used by the Lord to participate in what He is doing. His works are established through His servants as evidence that He is in fact the same yesterday, today, and forevermore. He seeks those who would fully avail themselves to Him. Why should our lives be filled with clutter that works against His plan? Our greatest joy can be found in pleasing Him through reflecting His will on earth as it is in heaven. Oh that Christ might be seen today through those who earnestly and exclusively seek Him as the only stability in these uncertain times.

“And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:19 The keys unlock the doors to the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. With one key, the largest and the most difficult door can swing open on the hinges of faith. Peter was given the keys to unlock every door existing there. The possessing of keys is essential, but their proper use is still required. Peter received from the Father the revelation of the Person of Jesus Christ accompanied with the relationship that exists between them. The revelation that He is the Christ provides the keys given to man in order for him to correspond and commune with God. Now it takes spiritual growth and experience to know what things we should ask for thus aligning ourselves with the will of the Father. When earth reflects the will of heaven, then earth will have upon it an instrument that will use the keys as a means of having God’s kingdom to come, and His will to be done on earth as it is in…

“If the ax is dull, and one does not sharpen the edge, Then he must use more strength; But wisdom brings success.” Eccl 10:10 The energy and strength exerted by the man who tries to figure things out on his own is constantly exerted. Yet the results are minimal because it is only mind challenging matter. The mind cannot achieve all that is believed when the axe is dull. But when God sharpens the edge, His Spirit begins to work and the prayer on earth is answered from heaven. God sharpens our axe in order to allow us to work with wisdom guiding us along the way. The Eternal God uses His faculties seeing the end before the beginning. He knows what it takes beforehand for the children of God to accomplish His will. We have a sharper cutting edge when we pray continually and do not lean to our own understanding. Then when His Word is spoken, it is sensible because the heart has been prepared to make room for the truth. Each moment must count with eternity in view. The wise seeks after wisdom and more is given to him. But the fool thinks that he has already…

“As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near.” Matthew 24:32 One major sign of the return of Christ will be the renewed courage and strength among those who carry the testimony of the Lord. As it was in the days of the prophets and later the apostles, so shall it be among individuals who will stand for truth without compromise. They will be among a people who have relented to casual Christianity, but will not allow the pressures brought to bear against them to discourage them nor diminish their faith. There will be new life within the Church as both young and old will boldly face persecution if required, for righteousness sake. The sign will be an awakening spreading to the ends of the earth. The Kingdom of God will be their message, the cross will be their standard, and zeal of the Lord will totally consume them. Professor Martin Scharlemann of Concordia Seminary said, “As soon as the missionaries are no longer welcome to do their work and their host countries begin to expel them, look up.”

“No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:44 The Father does a work by way of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of all who are responsive to His love. None can take the credit for the saving of even one soul. We do our part, but must wait on God to arrest the hearts and wills of those who would otherwise be eternally lost. Our prayer must be a constant ascension of incense, the aroma of our passion and desire to experience an environment where the deepest need within each heart may be realized. Our petitioning His Throne will set the atmosphere for the Divine will of God to be given expression that can reap much greater benefit than the striving of individuals and groups of people who think that their efforts can save the world. We are powerless without Him. Not His work in conjunction to our efforts, but rather His work through us as His initiative and not our own. God alone can do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that we could ask or even think. So why should we…

“By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” 1 John 3:16-17 The love of Jesus Christ is expressed by what He gave, not by what He gained. The power of the mighty may attain for them both position and privilege, but none of our trappings of success are sufficient enough to endear their heart with passion. One may even know that God is good and be impressed with His benevolence, but he is only left with an impression of love but may never know it. To know His love is to know why His death was a necessity. Our sins ran deeper than surface adjustments would satisfy and required more than a courteous and casual approach towards duty could ever fill. Jesus was fully aware of what pleases the Father thus He also knew what displeases Him. To know love is to know and desire what pleases God alone. True love frees one to obey without compulsion or coercion. Our lives are hidden in Christ thus His love flows through us to others. We cannot give too much because nothing is exclusively ours….

“Later a few religion scholars and Pharisees got on him. “Teacher, we want to see your credentials. Give us some hard evidence that God is in this. How about a miracle?” Matthew 12:38 Those who appear before men as authorities in relation to God’s order seldom recognize the fact that He refuses to restrict Himself to their expectations. Formulas and theorems of success do not work. He will withhold from them what they expected, but show forth the unexpected. These few that approached Him thought that He would be anxious to validate Himself before such an impressive crowd. But Jesus had nothing to prove. He was as sure of Himself then as He was when Satan tempted Him on the pinnacle of the Temple requesting Him to show off His divine powers. When we are asked to prove ourselves to be what we have been called by God to be, we must first recognize who it is that requires of us evidence. If not God by way of His Spirit, a prophetic word is sufficient. We live by what God has said and it serves as the basis for all He is now saying. If not by the Word of…

“Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.” James 3:13 It appears to be a misnomer to use wisdom and meekness in the same sentence. Wisdom often elevates the pride of many who become even wiser in their own eyes. Godly wisdom is always to be accompanied with meekness for those who receive wisdom from God are constantly aware of its source. Whenever we lift our intellect to a level above that which requires simple faith, true knowledge would be eclipsed by vanity. Strong and convincing arguments may be impressive, but causes the mind to erode into believing a lie when the truth cannot yet be proven. The meek of the earth are teachable and can learn in order to participate with God in what He is doing. The wise and the prudent cannot even see it as being important, thus live their lives as contradictions even to their own beliefs. God will bring both beliefs and lifestyles into one. We can then live and speak what we truly believe.

“But from this day I will bless you.” Haggai 2:19 Forward looking or the outlook is much brighter than the past for the children of the Most High God. Even though many of the things promised have not yet come to past, God is still true to every one of them. The seed is still in the barn. The seed that is to be planted must be scattered before the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate, the olives tree is able to yield its fruit. The laborers must sow in the time of sowing before the reapers can come and reap in the harvest. There is a future ahead of us that only God is able to bring to past. Yet each of us must diligently work in the season that is to be rightly occupied by those who are fully aware of times and seasons. While we may be waiting on God, God is waiting on us!