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Posts Tagged ‘forgivness’

You’ve probaly heard it a million times…. “God loves you.”

You’ve probaly seen it at a football game or learned it as a kid… John 3:16

You can believe it to be true and still have feel you lost the awe, the wonder, and the passion of that love… that truth… and how it changes everything… or should…

Join us as we take a deep look at John 3:16 and the surronding verses from a fresh perspective! No cliches. No broad brush strokes. Just the truth and heart of a God who loves you so very much… no matter what.

As part of our study, we will be hosting a dear friend who will share about what God’s love means to him. He is leaning into a new life foundation while moving out from a struggle with drug addiction. Drug addiction and substance abuse is becoming a big problem in the states, if you are addicted or know someone who needs help, please visit this article about how to help someone suffering from substance abuse on Fist Step.

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Lead Pastor Tom Hypes’ message will be focusing on Jesus’ best friend here on earth, Peter. He was a man who had a lot of great moments as He followed Jesus but he also has a list of mistakes and failures a mile long. If you are not perfect, none of us are. You are not alone. Peter’s story will be one you can relate to and be encouraged by.

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As we come into our last study in our series, we get a chance to respond….

What has the Spirit been putting on your heart lately? What areas does God want you to move in new ways in faith? Is it a time of celebration or struggle? Is a time of struggling with illness or a lingering sin? What are you to do?

Even if you have not been part of this study, you can easily walk into this one as an invitation to meet God where you are today for grace, freedom, and power.

theshepherdsfellowship.org

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We are spending some time studying the Bible in a particular way. We are reading smaller segments but spending more time on reflecting on the Word and praying through what is laid on our hearts and minds.

For instance, today I spent time reflecting on 1 Timothy 1:15-16 and I thought I would share some of it with you.

As Paul is writing to a dear friend and disciple of his, he shares this “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.  But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.

As I broke it down on paper, there were some good truths there that still stand true for us today. Let me give you a short version of my notes as I share.

He starts with a “trust worthy” statement that is “deserving full acceptance” that “Christ Jesus came into the world” “to save sinners” “of whom (Paul) is the foremost

In other words, we can fully know and accept that Jesus decided to sacrifice heaven to come to this earth. He decided to sacrifice the throne for the common place.. He decided to sacrifice the fullness of all things to enter the muck and the mire of the fallen creation. Why in the world would He ever take that huge of a loss?

Paul tells us his motive is to save the lost! He came to save sinners! He came to offer us salvation from what this world has to offer and what we give to ourselves. Paul tells us in his letter to the Romans that if we just acknowledge Jesus is the Son of God with our mouths and believe in out hearts that He died and rose again, we are saved. This is not a casual statement since believing such things means changing your life and submitting to Him but it leads to the life you were created for and an intimacy with God.

Now many pastor types would stop right there. They would present the global message of salvation putting it on you alone but Paul goes a step further. He personalizes the message. He realizes the sin in his own past as Paul was one messed up man before coming to Christ. He says before this section that he was a blasphemer, persecutor, and an insolent opponent of Christ and this is true. If we are honest with ourselves, in our own sin and actions, we can see the same in our pasts and maybe even our present state. This should drive us to start to ponder what this means to us personally instead of keeping “Jesus came to save sinners” as a truth that we hold at arm’s length.

But I received mercy!” and “for this reason, that in me” “Jesus might display his PERFECT patience as an example to those who would believe for eternal life“.

Everything changed when Paul received God’s mercy and the same is true for you and for me. I did a word study on mercy before (just means I looked it up in the dictionary to see what implications the different definitions might have and I found this….)

Mercykind and forgiving treatment of someone who could be treated harshly, help to someone in a desperate situation, compassion shown to an offender, compassionate treatment of those in distress.

That’s what God offers to you today and what He has given me countless times over in my life. This is a loving act for several reasons including the new start He wants to give to you in freedom. However, He also wants to show through you, what He will do for others if they turn to Him.

Many people are only interested on how to get their “get into heaven” card but He invites us to more. His purpose is deeper. It is to give us freedom through His ways and heart today while also sharing our stories with others so they are reached as well.

– Have you accepted Jesus as Leader and Forgiver in your life? Do you mean it and let it impact you? Does it drive you as you follow Him? Grow in Him? Is there some new decisions you can be making today for freedom’s sake? Do you need to plug into Christian community through a church to get support? Where is new life and mercy trying to come to you today?

– Are you living in such a way that people see that change and find it attractive for themselves as well? Are you telling people about the mercy Christ has given to you and how it impacts you? Are you leading people to Jesus or pushing them away?

I am so thankful that God has given me forgiveness in spite of my short comings, my unworthiness, and my sins. I am so thankful for the life He breathes through me. I am so thankful that His hand is upon me and life is more abundant than I ever have had before.  I am so thankful for MERCY!

If you are struggling or hurting and want what you see God is doing in my life. If you want salvation from sin and the day-to-day grind also… touch base with me. I’d love to share more with you about the victory that Christ brings into your life!

Read the Word
Reflect on the Word
Pray over the Word you Received

Pastor Tom Hypes
theshepherdsfellowship.org

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“He gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6

Grace is one of the words that we could spend hours trying to define fully. It just seems that saying it means unmerited forgiveness and love that brings a new start is not enough. When we choose to humble ourselves to the Lord, He gives us more grace. It might be the first time you come to Him to accept Him as Leader and Forgiver in your life (Romans 10:8-11) or it might be the third time today that you came back to Him after messing up, but He gives more grace to the humble.

We love that side of grace. We marvel at how God can be so patient, so loving, and so life giving. The challenge comes when it’s our turn to give grace to another.

Who are we if we accept God’s grace but not willing to give it to another who is humbled? I’m not talking about the repeat offender you most protect yourself from who has learned by saying “I’m sorry” that you’ll stay for another day of abuse. I’m talking about the person humbled before you that has messed up and is now repentant.

The reality is they have hurt us. It may be hurt through lies. It may be hurt through a stabbing in the back. It may be hurt through harsh words. With that hurt, comes anger. Anger threatens to choke out grace.

I know in my life, I have someone who has not forgiven me for an offense from over 20 years ago. They are locked up in anger towards me. I get that. I hurt them in a personal way. How I wish they could have freedom through grace though.

I know in my life, I don’t have many but I do have a short list of those I still struggle to give grace. I am a protective person of the people I love and when you hurt them, you anger me. However, I have made some strives in grace through Christ and continue to head that way in Him.

What about you? Is there someone in your life that has angered or hurt you? Have they come to you humbled but you are still struggling to give grace? It’s normal. It’s understandable. However, can I encourage you to lean into the power of the Holy Spirit to afford the same grace given to you to those who are repentant and looking for new life again?

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” I Corinthians 1:3

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As we come together to celebrate Father’s Day (by honoring men who have made a positive difference in our lives), we go deeper by looking at the place of showing honor in our lives today.

Who do we honor? What keeps us from doing so? Is there power in our lives by honoring others? What difference does this mean in our spiritual lives?

There’s a lot of questions that most of us have not even thought of asking. Dig into the Bible with us and see what we find together.

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I haven’t said much on the whole Gov. Blagojevich thing since I do believe in the presumption of innocence and that anyone can look guilty or innocent depending on how the media wants to paint it. Now that his first trial is over and he was found not guilty on most of the charges but guilty on one, he is back on the interview trail and I’m a little more willing to chat.

This morning, I watched him being interviewed on the Today show and I saw more of the same that I have seen from him before. He appears to be the stereotypical politician with a gift for spin, repeating pre-practiced answers, and ignoring the interviewer’s questions to just spew what ever message he is bent on portraying. At the same time, I realized he was also just a guy who made some mistakes and is dancing so he doesn’t have to accept responsiblity for it. I would have so much more respect for him if he just said “The truth is I made some mistakes and I am sorry. You can get caught up in this game and the junk that happens in politics but when it comes down to it, I only had control over what I did or did not do and I could have done it better.”  Then follow it up with a tangible change in life and make a difference instead of years of being on the defense.

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