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The PASSION Blog

This blog is a place where I share quick reflections on faith, life and the Bible. Be encouraged and blessed.


The PASSION Prayer Squares
January 9, 2021

We have created a simple tool to help us all in our prayer and devotion times with God. It is called the PASSION Prayer Squares.

It will help us to give thanks to God for His many blessings, to pray for ourselves and others, and to be open to God to speak to us. It also has a place to record our daily Bible readings and any reflections we may have.

If you are interested you can the PDF and instructions here.

Blessings,
Dave


Three focus verses for 2021
January 1, 2021

I have decided to have three focus verses for 2021. These verses are to guide my year and keep me on track in the things I feel called to do.

This year I am using three different versions as the versions use slightly different wordings to bring the meaning out.

Proverbs 3:5-6 TPT - Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, and he will lead you in every decision you make. Become intimate with him in whatever you do, and he will lead you wherever you go.

2 Timothy 2:15 AMP - Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.

1 Peter 4:10 NLT- God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.

My heart in 2021 is the trust God and His leading, to study hard and rightly use God's Word, and to use my gifts for the good of others.

I hope and pray 2021 is a great year for you. It is my hope that you will be blessed by God and you will know His peace and favour this year.

Blessings,
Dave


But when you
December 23, 2020


Matthew 6:1 says “Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven”.

We can see by this verse that we need to be careful of how we do things and check our motives for doing them. Further on in chapter 6 Jesus talks about three things we can do that get us public praise. I call them the “but when you” statements.

1. But when you give

Verse 4 says “But when you give to the needy...” This can be something we can do privately or we can do publicly and make a big show of it. Jesus said not to let our left hand know what our right hand is doing.

2. But when you pray

Verse 6 says “But when you pray...” Again when we pray we can make a big show of it or we can do most of it privately. Jesus told us not to be like the hypocrites who grandstand with our prayers in the church or on street corners.

3. But when you fast

Verse 17 says “But when you fast...” Fasting is about giving up things for God, usually food, and pressing in to Him for breakthrough in some area. Jesus tells us to keep it quiet and not seek praise from others for doing it. Fasting is about you and God.

Of course these verses are not saying that we should never let anyone know what we are doing. There are times when we should tell people what we have done in a testimony sense because it will encourage them on to greater things in their own life.

But most of the time these things should be done in secret with no show or expecting praise from others. It is about the heart attitude we have before God and our motives for doing it.

Blessings,
Dave


Contrasting the humanity & deity of Jesus
December 16, 2020


One of the key tenants of the Christian faith is that Jesus was both fully God and fully man. He left the glories of His heavenly home and was born into this world as a child.

One of the things I really noticed this week in my Bible reading is the contrast of Jesus’ humanity and His deity in some of the gospel stories. Here are a few
examples.....

1. During the storm on the lake (Mark 4:35-41)

After spending the day preaching to the multitudes we read that Jesus was tired and fatigued. He fell asleep on the boat. Then the storm blew up and the disciples cried out for help. He stood and calmed the storm. In His humanity he slept, but in His divinity He controlled the forces of nature.

2. At the death of Lazarus (John 11:1-44)

Jesus’ friend Lazarus had died and he had been placed in a tomb for four days. Jesus arrived, spoke to the sisters and wept at his friends death (v35). He then prayed, called Lazarus to come out and he was raised to life. We see Jesus’ humanity in His pain, but His divinity in raising Lazarus to life.

3. In the Garden of Gethsemane (Luke 22:29-51)

In the Garden Jesus was extremely distressed at the thought of going to the cross. We see His human emotion and stress at what He faced. Then as He is about to be arrested one of His followers cuts off the ear of one of the guards. Jesus then stands and heals his ear (v51). His power and divinity again shine through.

In these three great stories from the gospels we see the contrast of Jesus’ humanity and His deity. He was truly man in that He experienced all the pain, fatigue and anguish we suffer, but He was truly divine in that He showed God’s power to control nature, raised people from the dead and heal those in need.

Jesus truly understands us as He lived in this world and He experienced many of the things we experience. And because of His divinity He also has the power to save us.

Blessings,
Dave


The importance of love
December 8, 2020


1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:1-3‬ ‭says, “If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.”

This passages talks about the importance of love in our lives and in our service to God. There are three reminders in it about love.

1. We can speak heavenly languages, but if we do not love others it is likened to a noisy gong.

2. We can speak words of prophecy and understand God’s plans, but if we do not love others we would be nothing.

3. We can give everything we own to the poor, but if we do not love others we have gained nothing.

If you are like me and feel that you need to be more loving towards others, you can join me in praying this prayer.

Prayer

Dear God, please help me to understand the importance of love in all I do. I pray that when I pray, when I prophecy or when I give, that love is my ultimate motivation. I pray that I will love You and love others more and more each day. Amen.


The compassion of Jesus
December 1, 2020

The Bible tells us in numerous places that Jesus was full of compassion. Psalm 103:8 tells us that “The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love”.

As I dwelt on this compassion I came to realise that compassion needs to have action attached to it. It can’t just be a noun or describing word, it needs to be a verb or a doing word.

As I looked through Scripture I found four ways in which Jesus showed compassion to those He came in contact with. Here they are...

1. He became people’s teacher – Mark 6:35 says, “When Jesus got out of the boat, he saw the large crowd that was like sheep without a shepherd. He felt sorry for the people and started teaching them many things”.

2. He fed people – In Mark 8:2 Jesus said, “I feel sorry for these people. They have been with me for three days, and they don’t have anything to eat.” He then multiplied the fishes and the loaves.

3. He raised people to life – In Luke 7:13-15 we see that Jesus had compassion on a widow who had just lost her only son. He walked up to the young man, raised Him to life and gave him back to his mother.

4. He healed the sick – Matthew 14:14 says, “When Jesus got out of the boat, he saw the large crowd. He felt sorry for them and healed everyone who was sick”.

Jesus had compassion in all of these examples. His compassion was not just in thought, but in deed. He was moved to action.

It is my hope and prayer that I will not only have Jesus’ compassion in my life, but it will be a compassion that moves me to action. How about you?

Blessings,
Dave


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