MY FRIENDS, ARE WE GIVEN OVER TO STRONG DELUSIONS?

Sep. 11, 2017

MY FRIENDS, ARE WE GIVEN OVER TO STRONG DELUSIONS?

th“Douglas County authorities released a detailed report on the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College Oct. 1, 2015, which includes a six-page, typewritten “manifesto” in which Harper Mercer admitted he was a follower of the occult. In his manifesto, the 26 year old wrote that he is part of a “demonic Hierarchy” and will become a demon when he dies and return “to kill again and again” after possessing someone else. “You will know my work by my sign, the pentagram will fly again,” he wrote, referring to a symbol associated with the occult……….

“But for people like me there is another world, a darker world that welcomes us. For people like us this (is) all that’s left,” he wrote. “My success in Hell is assured.” A train of cars was, moving with the speed of lightning.  “The angel bade me look carefully. I fixed my eyes upon the train. It seemed the whole world was on board. Then he showed me the conductor, who looked like a stately fair person, whom all the passengers looked up to and reverenced.  I was perplexed, and asked my attending angel who it was.  Said he, It is Satan.

He is the conductor in the form of an angel of light.  He has taken the world captive. They are given over to strong delusions, to believe a lie that they train-conductor-polar-express-san-diego-christmas-partymay be damned. His agent, the next highest in command, is the engineer, and others of his agents are employed in different offices as he may need them, and they are all going with lightning speed to perdition. I asked the angel if there were none left.

He bade me look in an opposite direction, a little company was traveling a narrow pathway. All seemed to be firmly united, and bound together by the truth. This little company looked care-worn, as though they had passed through severe trials and conflicts……..But they also looked triumphant, as though their victories were nearly won.”” (E.G. White, Early Writings p.264)

My friends, is Satan taking full control of our minds, through what we watch on TV, at the theater, the video games we allow our children to watch, what we listen to, and our complacent and self-righteous attitude about the darkness of our world? And how long “before we are given over to strong delusions, and we begin to waver between two opinions before Satan becomes the victor?

Many feel because they go to church, visit the sick and feed the hungry, they are not vulnerable to a full takeover by Satan. Remember, Judas was in bo12the presence of Christ daily, in his mind he considered himself a disciple of Christ but, he never made a full commitment to where Christ was leading. Therefore, he betrayed the son of God, with a kiss which sealed his fate in perdition. My friends, Satan continues to” take the world captive and many even in the church are given over to strong delusions, believing a lie” which will eventually seal their fate in perdition.

So, How many are riding that train and will not realize it until Christ says “I know you not?” Friends, we must stay focused, stay on our knees and in God’s word while allowing God’s Spirit to make a full transformation. For, “It has not yet appeared what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” 1 John 3”2 (KJV)

MY FRIENDS, ONLY UNDER HIS WINGS WILL WE SURVIVE!!

Sep. 10, 2017

MY FRIENDS, ONLY UNDER HIS WINGS WILL WE SURVIVE!!

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!” For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with His feathers, and he-will-cover-you-with-his-feathers-under-his-wings-you-will-find-refuge-_image-by-sweet-to-the-soulunder His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.

You will not be afraid of the terror by night, or of the arrow that flies by day; Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness, or of the destruction that lays waste at noon. A thousand may fall at your side and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not approach you.” Ps 91:1-7 (NASB) My friends, those six words, “but it shall not approach you,” is where we will focus our attention.

An article in National Geographic provided a penetrating picture of God’s protection. After a forest fire in Yellowstone National Park, forest rangers began their trek up a mountain to assess the inferno’s damage. One ranger found a bird literally petrified in ashes, perched on the ground at the base of a tree. Somewhat sickened by the eerie sight, he knocked over the bird with a stick.

When he struck it, three tiny chicks scurried from under their dead mother’s wings. The loving mother, keenly aware of impending disaster, had fear_not-title-2-still-16x9 carried her offspring to the base of the tree and had gathered them under her wings, instinctively knowing that the toxic smoke would rise. She could have flown to safety but had refused to abandon her babies.

When the blaze had arrived and the heat had scorched her small body, the mother had remained steadfast. Because she had been willing to die, so that those under the cover of her wings would live. (Author Unknown) “He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings we may seek refuge.” My friends, under The wings of our Savior is that place where His promises of life eternal become real, that place where the enemy will never “be able to approach us” because, “affliction shall not rise up the second time.” Nahum 1:9 (KJV)

My friends, we must “remain steadfast, unmovable always abounding” under the cover and refuge of His wings. And one day soon His faithful will live in that city prepared for the redeemed that need no sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God will lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.” Rev 21:23 (KJV)

imagesBut we must also understand in our attempt to get to the promise land Satan will not stand by idol. Remember, he is our enemy who lays many obstacles in our path which will entice us to leave from under our Savior’s wings and follow Satan to perdition. So our focus must remain on Calvary and on our Savior’s many promises in His word and not on the things of this world.

Friends, Christ died a cruel death for our Salvation so that we may live and remain covered with His feathers, and under His wings find refuge in all situations and circumstances of our life. So let’s continue to cry out to the Master, “not my will but thy will be done” while standing firm on His promises of “unmerited and Divine favor” that He bestows and “renews upon His faithful each morning.”

MY FRIENDS, GOD SAYS MOVE OUT!!

Sep. 8, 2017

MY FRIENDS, GOD SAYS MOVE OUT!!

At times we try to follow Gods hand in determining what direction He’s leading. In our limited capacity to images1comprehend the things of God we figure we can somehow understand his ways. But, “His thoughts are not our thoughts, neither are His ways” Is 55:8 (KJV) So we panic.

Maybe it is the death of a love one, or maybe being terminated from the perfect job, or maybe your child is not the child you had raised as a Christian but now has a mind of their own and that mind has nothing to do with the God you serve. God it’s just not fair.

My friends, we live under the umbrella of uncertainty each day but as a child of God, it is God’s hand and heart that guides us. In addition, I feel at times it is appropriate to fall on our knees and ask God, what’s going on? Do you still care? I also know we will not always get an answer and if we do it may be, “my grace is sufficient.”

There is a song by Babbie Mason that says; ”when you don’t see His plan and when you can’t trace His hand thtrust his heart” the song goes on to say “like a tapestry he’s weaving you and me to someday be just like him.”

By definition a tapestry is a piece of fabric consisting of material that you bend or twist out of shape, upon which colored threads are woven by hand to produce a design. Those bends and twist are each of the Trials we face each day. But our trials must-not overwhelm us.

Remember Christ is in control through our faith. So it becomes all about God’s word and Spirit shaping us into a design that is pleasing in God’s sight as we die daily while eliminating self from who we are and where God is trying to take us.

And one day with no reservations God will say these are my children and they are “safe to save.” It is not always the perfect life that prepares us for God’s kingdom. On the contrary, it is the constraints and contentions, the mountains and valleys of despair that advance us in our Christian journey.

While at the same time we continue to yield to the will of God by the choices we make through His will, which then keeps our focus towards heaven and not on the things of this world. For the only choice that has any meaning in a child of God’s life is, our choice that we make to serve God on this journey.

hqdefault-300x225A journey in which faith, Grace, love, mercy, humility, endurance and God’s Providence leads us to His kingdom. When God called Abraham, it was a call for a commitment. And it started with Abraham’s faith in God.

“Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV) And like Abraham, for you and I, a new life begins with discipleship. But remember, discipleship is about fortitude and the stamina through God’s Spirit to endure till the end.

Hebrews 11:8, (KJV) says, “By faith Abraham, [and you and I “for such a time as this”] when we are called to move out, too a place” we must respond; by moving out through faith, while not always knowing where Christ will lead, but what we do know, final destination, life-eternal.

MY FRIENDS, CAN WE TRUST THE ONE WHO DIED FOR US?

Sep. 7, 2017

MY FRIENDS, CAN WE TRUST THE ONE WHO DIED FOR US?

th“The Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly. O Lord of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you!” Psalm 84:11-12 And blessed is the one who commits to the one who died for us. “A television program preceding the 1988 Winter Olympics featured blind skiers being trained for slalom skiing, impossible as that sounds.

Paired with sighted skiers, the blind skiers were taught on the flats how to make right and left turns. When that was mastered, they were taken to the slalom slope, where their sighted partners skied beside them shouting, “Left!” and “Right!” As they obeyed the commands, they were able to negotiate the course and cross the finish line, depending solely on the sighted skiers’ word. It was either complete trust or catastrophe.

Like the blind skiers, we must obey the commands of Christ voice as we negotiate the course on our journey to the promise land. It becomes either6a00d8341c500653ef0148c74239c6970c-225x300 complete trust or catastrophe. Every step along the way through our faith and endurance must be focused on “the One who died for us.” Because, “those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore..” Psalm 125:1-2 (ESV)

My friends, prophecy is being fulfilled, and soon this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” Matt. 24:14 (KJV) As we look at the world and the daily “breaking news” “Babylon the great,” not is fallen but has fallen…and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! ” Rev. 18:1-3 (NKJV) And soon catastrophe and then total annihilation for all who remains.

But, God’s children who trust in the One who died for us and endures till the end and keep our focus on the things above and not on the things of this world, life eternal is ours. So today we must “throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And…run with perseverance the race marked out for us” Heb. 12:1 (NIV)

My friends, Christ still extends His grace to His Children and when the winds and the rains becomes boisterous, and we begin to sink we must continue to cry out, th“Lord, not my will but thy will be done!” “And immediately Jesus will guide us to safety.

Trust and faith my friends, but we must believe that God showed his love for us in that while we were still sinners, He died.” Trust and faith, identical twins, both demanding total confidence, and mental fortitude in what an unseen being that we as Christians call God, Master, the Good Shepherd, Jehovah, can do and will do for us in all situations and circumstances of our life.

And like the three Hebrew boys who were facing annihilation in a fiery furnace, we may not always hear God’s voice, “but if” not, we must continue through God’s word and Spirit to trust in the one who died for us while never allowing the god of this world to take our focus off of the one who has secured our mansion above where His faithful will live throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity.

MY FRIENDS, WHAT GREY AREA IS WITHIN US?

Sep. 6, 2017

MY FRIENDS, WHAT GREY AREA IS WITHIN US?

thCharles M. Blow, (In Defense of the Truth,) a New York Times article that speaks of our Presidents states; to some his “lying may seem small, just another defect among many, but to me it is so much more. Honesty is the foundation of character. The truth is the common base from which all else is built. And yet, this man feels completely unbound by it. He has no respect or reverence for it.

For him, honesty is an option, one that he feels no compunction to choose. Before Trump’s bigotry, race-baiting, misogyny, corruption, bullying and vindictiveness, there is the lying. One could even argue that the lying is a core component of all the rest.”  friends let’s focus on the words “a core component of all the rest” as we go to God’s word in John 8:41-44 (KJV) Christ speaks to those Jews who claim God as their Father.

“For such a time as this,” Christ also speaks to you and I when He stated, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and I am here. I came not of my own accord, but He sent me. Why don’t you understand what I say? It’s because you cannot bear to hear my word. You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires.

He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his ownth character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” My friends, “as a liar, Satan was expelled from heaven and will never be allowed to regain residence there again.”

And if we allow Satan to continue to take us down that same path he traveled we have also decided, not God to expel ourselves from that place even our imagination is not capable of defining because no “eye has seen, nor ear has heard, and no human mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.” 1 Cor. 2:9 (NIV)

My friends, Calvary and the plan of salvation must be a-part of every breath we take. It’s crucial we understand God’s abiding love and grace that continually seeks a commitment from us that cries out daily, not my will but thy will be done. But lying is like a cancer that destroys all the good and honest traits within us.

thTY4O6F82That is why if our President has any good or outstanding traits, they are all destroyed by what comes out of his mouth 75% of the time. So we must understand, it’s the father of dishonesty that keeps “us sinking deep in sin.” But it is also the abiding grace and love of God that went to Calvary and died for us “while we were still sinners.”

My friends, there’s no grey areas in regards to the truth, only black and white. Therefore we must “Enter the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it [because they fail to realize that honesty is the foundation of their character.] In addition, narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which will lead to complete honesty through Christ because very few understand, “thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbor” “is a core component of all the” commandments.] Matt 7:13-14 (NKJV) (paraphrased)

SEP. 7, YOUR DAILY CLIMB (DEVOTINAL)

Sep. 5, 2017

MY FRIENDS, WE HAVE BEEN CHOSEN, SO WE MUST NOW STAND FIRM, STAY FOCUSED, AND ENDURE!!!

Today we can honestly say the best is yet to come in spite of what we encounter from day to day in this relentless battle Satan and His forces are waging in their vicious and maddening pursuit for each of our souls. And as children of the King we must never settle for anything less than God’s best for our life Because His promise in Matt. 7:9-11 (NIV) states, “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! My friends, It’s time we all say I am ready to put off the old man or woman, because we are no longer lost sheep, for we have decided to never stop allowing self to die daily as we realize “the Spirit who lives in you and I is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.” 1 John 4:4 (NLT)

Today we have been set apart to finish Christ work here on earth for “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.” So please my friends pledge with me today that we all will be the man or women God created us to be. Just think how great it is living in the 21st century God’s chosen generation to finish his mandate “for such a time as this.”

In addition, It is now clearer than ever before why Satan is so determine that we fall in some area of our life. and he will never stop or take one prisoner so now as we die daily through God’s word and Spirit, the things of this world that draws our attention away from Christ must become obsolete, as we lay prostrate before God in humility and with no reservations that the good work he started in us He can now “carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

Today God’s will must be complete within us as we understand now more then ever before that we are children of the King. So my friends today let’s give it all to the Master. Not tomorrow, but at this very moment let’s put on the whole amour of God and not let Satan intimidate, or discourage us any longer because we are God’s chosen His royal priesthood.

A holy nation, God’s special possession, [who will] declare the praises of him who called you and I out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Peter 2:9 (NIV) Our faith also tells us we were chosen for such “a time as this.” Oh what a honor, so we must now stand firm, stay focused and endure while only using the power of the cross to sustain us until we hear”well done thy good and faithful servant.”

So now my friends, let’s tell the world together, “Come and hear, all who fear God, And I will declare what He has done for my soul. I cried to Him with my mouth, And He was extolled with my tongue. If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear. But certainly God has heard me; He has attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, Who has not turned away my prayer, Nor His mercy from me!” Ps. 66:16-20

MY FRIENDS, IS GOD’S GRACE SUFFICIENT FOR YOU AND I?

Sep3, 2017

MY FRIENDS, IS GOD’S GRACE SUFFICIENT FOR YOU AND I?

Paul tell us, “to keep himself from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given [to him] in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass [him, and], to keep [him] from becoming conceited. Three times he pleaded with the Lord about this [pain], that it imgres3should leave. But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.

Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 (ESV) Which tells you and I that Christ unmerited and undeserving favor is sufficient for every situation and circumstances of our life.

For His power is made perfect in all of our weakness. “And It is because of  His grace we must be crucified with Christ daily until it is no longer you or I who live, but Christ who lives in us; and the life which we now live in the flesh, we live by Faith in the Son of God, who loved us, and delivered Himself up for our [salvation].” Gal. 2:20 (NKJV)

Yes, His grace is sufficient to carry us through the storms and rough terrains of this life all the way to His pure and holy kingdom which willchrist-hugging-300x216 continue throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity. Therefore, we must understand as God’s children we are all “shapen in iniquity; and in sin did our mother’s conceive us.” Ps. 51:5 (KJV)

Therefore, we are not placed in time out or given only limited access to His grace because of our sinful nature. But  through the power of God’s grace we must understand, “there is salvation in no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12 (NASB)

Consistent with this, as we look at all God has done for us, we must endure through our “weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities of this life.” And my friends, as you and I look at the plan of Salvation, With no reservation we should all be able to say; do we really believe, Our Father allowed His Son to go through all He did for our salvation, and we personally have no cross to bear?

thNo, Via Dolorosa the (“Way of Grief”) through our journey here on this earth?  But, the question we must also ask ourselves like the one “who, desires to build a tower, does he [or she] not first sit down and count the cost, whether they have enough to complete it? Luke 14:28 (KJV) So in regards to our salvation, as we count the cost, is God’s grace sufficient enough to complete God’s will for our lives here on this earth?

Or has Christ timing for a commitment caught most of His children at a bad time?  And is it at a bad time, because His standard for our Salvation seems to be out of touch with our plans at this point in our life?  “So now consider what it means to desire heaven, and yet turn away from Christ because of the conditions laid down?” So, we tell ourselves, whatever God’s unmerited and undeserving favor is, it really has to be sufficient for now?

MY FRIENDS, THE TEST OF A TRUE SOLDIER IS?

Aug 29, 2017

MY FRIENDS, THE TEST OF A TRUE SOLDIER IS?

In Judges 7:1-20 (NKJV) the narrative begins with, “the Spirit of the Lord came on Gideon, His mandate was to go to war with the Midianites. Gideon then thblew his trumpet, summoning the men of Israel to arms, 32,000 headed the call. But God told Gideon it was to many, they would only claim victory for themselves instead of recognizing that it was all God.

So then, Gideon ask if anyone “trembles with fear” or were concern about home and family can leave. 22,000 returned Home leaving only 10,000. God told Gideon, “there was still too many. His mandate was now, take them down to the water, and the final test for discipleship the Lord told Gideon, “everyone who laps from the water with his tongue, as a dog laps, you shall set apart by himself.

Likewise everyone who gets down on his knees to drink.” And the number of those who lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, was three hundred men; but all the rest of the people who got down on their knees to drink water were sent home. My friends, like the Rich young ruler only one thing he lacked which tells a child of God there is no grey areas with God, His Son was sent to demonstrate a pure character fit for eternity.

Then the Lord told Gideon, I will save you, and deliver the Midianites into your hand with this faithful few. So out of th32,000 fighting soldiers only 300 had the character that exemplified what God was looking for in a dedicated soldier. Only three hundred came battle ready. “For the Lord, knows our true Character “He examines each of us…He knows our thoughts before we think them” Ps 139:1-2 (KJV)

Also, if anyone come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever [is not battle ready] and doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. My friends, we do not determine the test that qualifies us for discipleship only God. Luke 14:26-27 (KJV)

In addition, the prince of darkness goal is not to sift the chaff for they already belong to him, because he knows there foundation is not centered on the word of God and His Spirit. But His goal is to sift the wheat who is God’s true followers, His elect, the chosen three-hundred. The one’s who searches there soul, while dying to self-daily.

600-Gideon-Trumpets100Therefore Satan will use whatever means necessary to try and destroy their Character. But God’s faithful knows they “can do all things through Christ, [because he gives each of us strength.” To defeat the enemy] Phil. 4:13. So God’s faithful endures as they continue to stay focused, and hold onto the promises of God, as there faith and passion to serve, prepares them for the kingdom.

“Therefore we must take the shield of faith with which we will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with prayer and supplication in the Spirit.” The narrative ends with Gideon, and his three hundred faithful never having to fight the battle, only holding their torches in their left hands, with trumpets in their right, while blowing, as they shouted, “A sword for the Lord and Gideon. For the battle was God’s from the beginning to win.

MY FRIENDS, THIS IS UNCHARTED TERRITORY?

Aug. 27, 2017

MY FRIENDS, THIS IS UNCHARTED TERRITORY?

“God’s tender compassion never fails for they are new every morning.” Therefore, our hope rest on the fact ththat He will Guide us through every situation and circumstances of our life. My friends, most of us have lived long enough to have seen the world as it is, but not as we would want it to be.

As kid’s we woke up daily to a brand new world where the adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and the Hardy boys would come to life within one’s imagination. Where outdoors was a world of castles and moats, that comprised of an array of trees, dogs, tadpoles lightning bugs, creeks and the woods where every trail, hill and rock would lead to one more great adventure where each step you took would be our safety net for life.

And then somewhere between our fantasy world and a world that is over saturated with television, and social media, life became real, with real issues and real choices that we all make throughout our life. Choices that determines one’s unavoidably consequences in this great controversy between good and evil, life and death.

So today it’s personal as we focus on where God is leading us in this world that at times is “uncharted or thunexplored territory.” So as God’s Chosen, the journey we are now traveling to the promise land stands on the other side of our trials that we must encounter as this controversy continues and the terrain we travel becomes unfamiliar.

But our Savior has been this way before. He knew the rough terrain would be real to us as we moved from the safety net of our homes as children to a life of strong winds and boisterous waves. And at times because it is “uncharted” we will become terrified and begin to sink.

And like Peter, cry out “Save me Lord!” “And our cries are headed as, He delivers us from all [our] fears,” Ps. 34:4 (KJV) because He knows no temptation [regardless of its source] has overtaken or enticed you or I that is not common to human experience [nor is any temptation unusual or beyond human resistance.]

But God is faithful [to His word [each morning and] He is compassionate and trustworthy,] and He will not let us [sink or] be tempted beyond our ability [to resist], but along with any temptation He [has in the past and is now and] will [always] provide a way of escape, so that we’ll be able to endure [without yielding, and we will overcome temptation with joy]. 1 Cor 10:13 (AMP)

My friends, daily we must be prepared to face that place that goes beyond the unknown, deep into an “uncharted territory”on this Journey Christ thhas us on. But because of the Good Shepherds method of preparation we can say with no reservation, that [with joy] we will exult in our sufferings.

And we will rejoice in our hardships, knowing that hardship (distress, pressure, and trouble) produces patient and endurance; and endurance, produces a proven character (which defines our spiritual maturity); and with our proven character, it will produce hope and confident and assurance [of our eternal salvation].

My friends, Such hope [in God’s promises] never disappoints us, because God’s love has been abundantly poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who [will guide us in all truth and understanding as we prepare to leave our temporary home here on earth to our permanent home with many mansions in God’s kingdom]” Rom. 5:3-6 (KJV) Paraphrased

 

 

MY FRIENDS, WHAT IS DISTRACTING US?

Aug. 26, 2017

MY FRIENDS, WHAT IS DISTRACTING US?

thMatt. 25, Jesus likens “the kingdom of heaven too ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish [complacent, and careless because they became distracted right before the Bridegroom was to arrive], and five were wise [attentive, practical, and sensible because they were prepared for His coming]…….. “Now while the bridegroom was delayed, they all began to nod off, and they fell asleep.

At midnight there was a shout, ‘Look! The Bridegroom [cometh]! Let’s go to meet him.” My friends throughout the years we have all fallen asleep throughout our Christian journey here on earth. “At times of ignorance God winked at our foolishness and complacency towards our responsibility at finishing His mandate here on earth and being ready when He comes.

Now that we have had an opportunity to have that personal relationship with Christ, how will we explain our distraction and lack of interest in eternal things after all He’s done for our salvation. In Matt 24 and 25 His message to all His disciples is, Things will happen right before His second coming so He warns us not to be distracted, for you do not know which day our Lord will come.

And you can be assured of this one thing, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been thiefinthenighton the look-out and would not have allowed his house to be broken into.  For this reason, we must be ready; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when we do not think He will.” Matt 24:42-44 (NASB)

My friends, it’s easy to lose focus but beware, when we are least expectant “the bridegroom will come, and the door will be shut. But, those who are ready will go in with him to the wedding feast, a feast that will continue throughout eternity. I’m sure we all have noticed, the higher up we go, as we look down the smaller the world below gets.

So, it is with a child of God, the Higher up or closer we get to Christ and His abiding love and grace the smaller the world gets until it’s no longer relevant, only His presence, as we continue to get closer and closer to Him through His word and Spirit. The story is told by the Golf legend Arnold Palmer. “It was the final hole of the 1961 Masters tournament.

He had a one-stroke lead and had just hit a very satisfying tee shot. “I felt I was in pretty good shape.” As I approached my ball, I saw an old friend standing at the edge of the gallery. He motioned me over, stuck out his hand and said, “Congratulations.” I took his hand and shook it, but as soon as I thdid, I knew that one distraction, took my focus off of winning.

The next two shots, I hit the ball into a sand trap, then put it over the edge of the green. I missed a putt and lost the Masters.” My friends, Are we spiritually where Christ wants us to be on this journey? And if not, why not? And what on this earth could possible cause us to lose our focus and our salvation this close to Christ second coming? Christ told the rich young Ruler, only one thing you lack. My friends, are we willing to loose it all  because there is one thing we lack?