Monday, February 23, 2009

Morning Has Broken

Morning has broken.. like the First Morning! Isn't that picture amazing? It reminds me of new beginnings in such an awesome way!

I look at a scene like this and want to laugh and cry at the same time. God is so good to give us new beginnings in our own lives just as beautiful.

Last Thursday (Feb 18th) I received a letter from ISI "officially" inviting me to join their Campus Staff. I am very excited to begin the process by going to New Staff Orientation, March 8-14th. I have a lot to do, think about, and pray about. God has brought me a long way. From having no desire to stay in this country at all, to believing God's purposes for me and having joy in the prospect of helping Int'l students and their families. He is chipping away my independence and my pride, and giving me joy! What a mighty God we serve!
Please continue to pray for me as I begin the search for partners in ministry to serve along side me prayerfully, financially and voluntarily!
Please feel free to comment and send me your prayer requests and praises!

Monday, February 16, 2009

John 15

I AM the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser.

2Any branch in Me that does not bear fruit [that stops bearing] He cuts away (trims off, takes away); and He cleanses and repeatedly prunes every branch that continues to bear fruit, to make it bear more and richer and more excellent fruit.

3You are cleansed and pruned already, because of the word which I have given you [the teachings I have discussed with you].

4Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in Me.

5I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing.

6If a person does not dwell in Me, he is thrown out like a [broken-off] branch, and withers; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire, and they are burned.

7If you live in Me [abide vitally united to Me] and My words remain in you and continue to live in your hearts, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.

8When you bear (produce) much fruit, My Father is honored and glorified, and you show and prove yourselves to be true followers of Mine.

9I have loved you, [just] as the Father has loved Me; abide in My love [a]">[a]continue in His love with Me].

10If you keep My commandments [if you continue to obey My instructions], you will abide in My love and live on in it, just as I have obeyed My Father's commandments and live on in His love.

11I have told you these things, that My joy and delight may be in you, and that your joy and gladness may be of full measure and complete and overflowing.

12This is My commandment: that you love one another [just] as I have loved you.

13No one has greater love [no one has shown stronger affection] than to lay down (give up) his own life for his friends.

14You are My friends if you keep on doing the things which I command you to do.

15I do not call you servants (slaves) any longer, for the servant does not know what his master is doing (working out). But I have called you My friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from My Father. [I have revealed to you everything that I have learned from Him.]

16You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you and I have appointed you [I have planted you], that you might go and bear fruit and keep on bearing, and that your fruit may be lasting [that it may remain, abide], so that whatever you ask the Father in My Name [as b]">[b]presenting all that I AM], He may give it to you.

17This is what I command you: that you love one another.

18If the world hates you, know that it hated Me before it hated you.

19If you belonged to the world, the world would treat you with affection and would love you as its own. But because you are not of the world [no longer one with it], but I have chosen (selected) you out of the world, the world hates (detests) you.

20Remember that I told you, A servant is not greater than his master [is not superior to him]. If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word and obeyed My teachings, they will also keep and obey yours.

21But they will do all this to you [inflict all this suffering on you] because of [your bearing] My name and on My account, for they do not know or understand the One Who sent Me.

22If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin [would be blameless]; but now they have no excuse for their sin.

23Whoever hates Me also hates My Father.

24If I had not done (accomplished) among them the works which no one else ever did, they would not be guilty of sin. But [the fact is] now they have both seen [these works] and have hated both Me and My Father.

25But [this is so] that the word written in their Law might be fulfilled, They hated Me without a cause.A)">(A)

26But when the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Advocate, Intercessor, Strengthener, Standby) comes, Whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of Truth Who comes (proceeds) from the Father, He [Himself] will testify regarding Me.

27But you also will testify and be My witnesses, because you have been with Me from the beginning.

What would you have "highlighted"? What message is the most important in this passage? Leave a comment and I will compile the answers in a later post for all the learn from.

The Lord Jesus has given us a precious gift in the Holy Spirit. Listen to Him. Let the truth ring in our hearts as we ignite more of the Holy Spirit's truth in our lives. We are God's. Let that be made obvious. Let us truly love one another. Live and breathe and function in the Vine!