Saturday, October 31, 2020

Orange Moon "The Abilities of Another"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…


"The Abilities of Another"


     In modern times, life changes when homes and businesses lose electrical power.   Illumination, heating and cooling, food storage, and access to communication affect our households.  Businesses often cannot function and make the profits necessary for their success.  Such difficult times vividly reveal the blessing of electricity, and the benefit it conveys to our lives.  


    "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me" (Philippians 4:13).    


    Loss of power in natural terms directly reflects a far more important spiritual reality for born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.  God calls us to live our lives by "the power that worketh in us," namely, "Christ, the power of God" (Ephesians 3:20; I Corinthians 1:24).  We do so by faith, trusting in our Lord's indwelling and enabling through the presence of the Holy Spirit in our hearts.  Our confidence in His promise of power determines how we experience the wonder of a life lived by the abilities of Another.  Like electricity, which does not cease to exist during times when its transmission is interrupted, our Lord is always present with us.  In both the natural and spiritual realm, however, if lines are down or damaged, we may not have access to the power that helps us to enjoy and benefit from a force far beyond our human capacity.  As Matthew wrote in his Gospel regarding distrust of the Lord Jesus in His home country: "He could not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief" (Matthew 13:58).


   When electrical components properly function, we experience their benefit far more than we realize.  We flip switches and enjoy the power while rarely giving a thought to the invisible force that makes such blessing possible.  In the same manner, when we trust and submit to our Lord by faith, making choices to affirm His enabling, we often do not realize how much He leads and empowers us.  The Lord Jesus Himself lived most of His earthly life by the power of God in a manner so inauspicious, His own brothers did not know who He was when His ministry began (John 7:5).  Thus, we do well to remember our Heavenly Father does not call to a transcendent life of godliness without first supplying a power "exceeding, abundantly above all we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20).  We turn on the switch, as it were, by faith.  The power - the power of the living and true God - flows as we do, and whether we see it or not, the abilities of Another enable us to walk in ways impossible apart His presence and working.


"Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might."

(Ephesians 6:10)


Weekly Memory Verse 

   Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness."

(Isaiah 41:10)




















































Friday, October 30, 2020

Orange Moon "Only, Always, Forever!"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…



"Only, Always, Forever!"


       "He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence" (Colossians 1:18).


    Christ only, Christ always, Christ forever!  This is the heart of God regarding the centrality of His Son in His eternal purposes.  It must be our heart as well.  We are to emphasize and exalt the Lord Jesus in all things, magnifying His singular place in both time and eternity. "God also hath highly exalted Him and given Him a name which is above every name" (Philippians 2:9)


    Ponder the Apostle Paul's affirmation "that in all things He might have the preeminence." Our immediate response may well be "Uh-oh!"  We would all admit that too many areas of our lives remain in great need for growth regarding the centrality of Christ.  Our spiritual enemies continually seek to distract us from this primary reason for our existence, which empowers a life truly lived in the presence and purpose of God.  We must therefore be aware of the inevitable temptations to minimize the importance of our Savior, whether in our understanding of Biblical doctrine, or application of the truth in our hearts and lives.


   The Holy Spirit ever seeks to exalt and reveal the Lord Jesus (John 16:14; 15:26).  He works in believers to do the same (John 15:27). This is reality because everything God does in both time and eternity is devoted to "the eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Ephesians 3:11). No other emphasis aligns with such Divine motivation and determination. The more we join our Heavenly Father in this purpose, the more life will be experienced in the measure and mode determined by God, and declared by the Apostle Paul, "To live is Christ" (Philippians 1:21). Any other existence is illusion, distraction, and deception. Christ only. Christ always. Christ forever!  This is life. This is truth. This is reality. Nothing else is.


"And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, and was transfigured before them: and His face did shine as the sun, and His raiment was white as the light. And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with Him. Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if Thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for Thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye Him."

(Matthew 17:1-5)


Weekly Memory Verse 

   Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness."

(Isaiah 41:10)




















































Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Orange Moon "The Choice To Rejoice" Part 2 THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2020

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…


(Friends: this is Part 2 of the message from day before yesterday.  As in the past, I am taking the liberty of sending tomorrow and Friday's message to you early because we have weather approaching that may mean we will be without power.  Thanks, Glen).




"The Choice To Rejoice"

Part 2


       The God who loves humanity so dearly He gave His Son to the cross of Calvary for us takes no pleasure in the hardships and pains we must endure.


    "Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live" (Ezekiel 33:11)

    "Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear Him" (Psalm 103:13).


    To whatever degree we hurt when others hurt, we can be sure our Father's heart feels an infinitely greater measure of sorrow.  It remains true, however, that when born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ make the choice to rejoice in our sadness, we please His heart more than we can ever know.  Although Job mourned much in complaint regarding his sufferings, he also confessed, "Thou He slay me, yet will I trust in Him" (Job 13:15).  This led to the Lord's  clearly glad affirmation that His servant had "spoken of Me the thing which is right" (Job 42:8). 


   It is one thing to rejoice in our pleasant blessings, and quite another to rejoice in our painful difficulties.  The latter reveals our trust in the heart of God, and our awareness with Job that even if the Lord allows upon us the very worst thing we could imagine, we could still be sure that devoted love motivated and moves His hand.  As any loving father - far more than any other - our Heavenly Father's administrations toward those who trust Him move with the current of love, whether by His tendermercies or His disciplined chastening.  "His compassions fail not.  They are new every morning… Whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth" (Lamentations 3:22-23; Hebrews 12:6).


    Somewhere in this moment, a believer looks Heavenward with tear-filled eyes and a broken heart to obey by faith the command, "Rejoice in the Lord always, and again, I say rejoice" (Philippians 4:4).  Holy is the scene, and blessed the bond of devotion between our Heavenly Father and His trusting child who makes the choice to rejoice amid conflicting emotions and physical sensibilities.  We are all that believer at times during our earthly journey, granted the singular opportunity to bless the heart of God that lies before us when our hearts are hurting.  It is not easy, but it is possible to rejoice always in our Father and His truth - "as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing" (II Corinthians 6:10).  He could not ethically and morally command us to rejoice were we not able through Christ to do so.  The Holy Spirit lives within us to enable such faith, the Bible shines its encouraging light, and the example and encouragement of other believers helps to please our Father in those times when His way does not please us.  He will not disappoint us when we so trust Him, and a deep peace and joy will keep our hearts even as we bless His heart.


"I will joy in the God of my salvation."

(Habakkuk 3:18)

"My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into diverse temptations, knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience."

(James 1:2-3)


Weekly Memory Verse 

   Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness."

(Isaiah 41:10)




















































Orange Moon "With You In the Spirit"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe...    


"With You In the Spirit"


   I prayed for my first best friend Bruce as I awoke this morning, born 64 years ago today.


    I remember Bruce's birthday each year because it is close to mine on the calendar.  I haven't seen him in more than a half century, and have no idea where he is or what he is doing.  However, each year on October 28th, I pray for him that God will bless his life with the Lord Jesus Christ, be it in salvation, or in growth in the grace and knowledge of a salvation already received.  "I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men" (I Timothy 2:1).


   The ability to span space and time offers one of the greatest aspects of the gift of prayer.  We can spiritually touch others, asking God to reveal Himself, His truth, and His working in the lives of people far removed from us, but near to Him.  "He is not far from every one of us" (Acts 17:27).   Certainly, prayer draws us near to God.  However, it also draws us near to the ones for whom we pray.   "Thou I be absent in the flesh, I am with you in the spirit" wrote the Apostle Paul to the Colossians (Colossians 2:5).  We bestow a gift upon people by our intercession on their behalf, and are ourselves blessed by the uttering of names, the remembrance of faces, and the opportunity to remain involved in the hearts and lives of those once near, but now long removed from our presence.


    Wherever Bruce may be, I hope his birthday is happy.  Far more, however, I pray that he will know the Lord Jesus in this day and always, whether in the new birth, or in growth from a birth already received and experienced.  Our Lord grants to His trusting children an amazing gift, the gift of prayer, whereby we are enabled to bless those who may be but a memory in proximity, but who remain near in heart.


We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers, remembering."

(I Thessalonians 1:2-3)

Weekly Memory Verse 

   Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness."

(Isaiah 41:10)