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Fruit of True Repentance

{Verse of the Day} Week 3 ~ Wednesday!

 

Here’s a recent scenario in our house.

Mooooooooom, he’s not being niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiice.”

“Son, tell your sister you are sorry.”

“Sorry” {stated flippantly}

Five minutes pass and again the same scenario repeats…why?  Because the apology was not sincere. 

2 Corinthians 7:10 says

 ”Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but wordly sorrow brings death.”

We see it on news programs.  Famous men and women – actors, singers, politicians,  - are interviewed once they’ve been caught in some form of immorality.  To help their image, they admit their mistakes, say that they are seeing a counselor for help (or have admitted themselves to rehab) and give a formal public apology.  The world applauds.

But this wordly sorrow that comes from getting caught and a desire to clear their reputation leads to death.  Godly sorrow brings repentance and leads to salvation and life.

In today’s reading, John gives the crowds applicable ways they can display their fruit of repentance in daily life.

 Luke 3:10-14

10 “What should we do then?” the crowd asked.

11 John answered, “Anyone who has two shirts should share with the one who has none, and anyone who has food should do the same.”

12 Even tax collectors came to be baptized. “Teacher,” they asked, “what should we do?”

13 “Don’t collect any more than you are required to,” he told them.

14 Then some soldiers asked him, “And what should we do?”

He replied, “Don’t extort money and don’t accuse people falsely—be content with your pay.”

 At first glance, it’s hard to see how giving a shirt or food would be fruit of repentance.  But in our human natures – we are all selfish.  When we follow God’s two greatest commands (love God and love your neighbor) we see that giving to our neighbor is evidence that we are a child of God.

The tax collector asks what he should do and John tells him to not be greedy – which is something all unregenerate tax collectors were.  Then the soldier asks and John tells him to have integrity and be content.  Again – this was evidence that they were followers of God.  When the tax collector and soldiers start living out what John has told them to do – others will notice these men have been changed by their encounter with Jesus.

Rarely do we talk of repentance in our modern culture.  It’s not something that we blurt out to friends and family but they should see by the way we live we have repented of our sin. Others should note that our lives have been changed by our encounter with Jesus.

The gospel of Luke comes to a conclusion in chapter 24.  Jesus says in this final chapter,

46  “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”

This is the gospel. 

**Chime In: How can others see fruit of repentance in your life?  Please share your testimony of repentance in the comment section – we’d love to hear and be encouraged.

Walk with the King,

 , WomenLivingWell.org

Luke {Week 3} – Point to Jesus

 

This week we are up to Luke chapter 3 and an interesting character enters the scene – it’s Zechariah and Elizabeth’s son – John the Baptist!  This is a man to pay attention to because look at how Jesus describes John the Baptist in Matthew 11:11

 ”Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.”

Wow!

(If you cannot see this video – click here)

John the Baptist did not have a degree in theology or a influential job.  He wasn’t even ordinary. The Bible tells us he lived in the wilderness, wore camel hair and ate locusts…not exactly the “seeker friendly” type of guy!

But he pointed to Jesus - and it revolutionized the world!

His message was simple “Repent!”

But it was powerful.

We too can be used by God.

We don’t need fancy degrees or charismatic personalities – we just need to be willing to point to Jesus and give him all the glory!

So let’s do it! Let’s live lives that point to Jesus this week and be inspired by the boldness of John the Baptist.

Walk with the King,

, WomenLivingWell.org

 

 Extra Resources for study:

John MacArthur:

Luke 3:1 Setting the Stage for Jesus, Part 1

Luke 3:2-3 Setting the Stage for Jesus, Part 2

Luke 3:3 Setting the Stage for Jesus, Part 3

Luke 3:3 Setting the Stage for Jesus, Part 4
Luke 3:4-6 A Voice Crying in the Wilderness, Part 1

Luke 3:4-6 A Voice Crying in the Wilderness, Part 2
Luke 3:7-8 True Repentance: God’s Highway to the Heart- 1
Luke 3:8-14 True Repentance: God’s Highway to the Heart- 2
Luke 3:15-17 True Repentance: God’s Highway to the Heart- 3
Luke 3:15-17 True Repentance: God’s Highway to the Heart- 4

Luke 3:18-20 The Legacy of John the Baptist

Luke 3:21-22 The Messiah’s Divine Confirmation, Part 1

Luke 3:21-22 The Messiah’s Divine Confirmation, Part 2

Luke 3:23-38 The Messiah’s Royal Lineage

 

Week 3 Memory Verse:

Higher resolution download link:

KJV – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/KJV%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

KJV B&W – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/KJV%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

NIV – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NIV%20-Luke%203.jpg

NIV B&W – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NIV%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

NKJV – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NKJV%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

NKJV B&W – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NKJV%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

NLT – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NLT%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

NLT B&W – Luke 3 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NLT%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%203.jpg

We also have the image saved in a “web-friendly” format for you to save and share with your friends in your GMG groups as well.
 

 

God’s Promises

Rembrandt’s Simeon and Jesus

“for my eyes have seen your salvation
that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and for glory to your people Israel.”
Luke 2:30-32

For many years I somehow thought that Simeon was a priest who worked at the temple, but it turns out that he was just a regular old man whose faith in God caused him to be called righteous and devout. Simeon held tight to the promises of God, specifically the promise that  one would come to rescue and redeem. This coming Deliverer is what his hopes were fixed on. God gave Simeon a great gift by telling him that though he was old he would not see death until he had first seen the Christ with his own eyes. What great kindness from God! God, in his providence, orchestrated things so that on the day that Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple to be dedicated Simeon was there as well, and the minute he saw the child he knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that the child is the One. He takes the child and, holding him close, praises God for his goodness and for the work that Jesus was going to do. Boy, I wish that I would react to God and to his word in this way.  God speaks to you and me in a way just as real and life-changing as he did to Simeon. He speaks truth to us, and makes promises to us. Do we believe the promises of God? Do we even know them?

Here are some of God’s promises to us.
He has promised to give rest to the weary mom (Matt. 11:28-30)! He has promised the lonely wife that he will always be with her ( Joshua 1:9, Matt. 28:20)! He has promised the woman who wants to grow in wisdom that he will bring about her sanctification through his word (1 Thess. 5:23-24, John 17:15-17)! For those who are going through or will go through difficult times–whether it lasts a season, a week, or a day–God has promised that everything he allows into our lives is for our good and for our betterment (Romans 8)!

We are promised that our salvation is secure, that we cannot be snatched out of the hand of God (Jn. 10:29  ) and Jesus promises to intercede for us (Rom. 8:34). Our redeemer prayers for us !! You can be sure that those prayers will be heard!

We may not hold the child with our hands, but we can hold the very promises of God in our hearts, and like Simeon we should eagerly await the (second) coming of the Son of God. How will we respond? Cherishing God’s gift? Waiting anxiously for Christs return? Do we act with enthusiasm when we read the Bible or do our devotions? Do our actions and attitude toward Christ show our kids his beauty and greatness?

Many of us do not think of God’s promises in these ways because we hold them at arm’s length and only think of them in their most general form. But these are promises we should cherish and apply to our lives through faith in Jesus.

Looking to Jesus,

Moms are Modern Day Shepherds…

 {My own personal little “flock”}
{Image credit: Marie Kelley Photography}

God treasures those who the world sometimes doesn’t see.

I LOVE that God REVEALED the birth of His Son…..Jesus, to common everyday…..shepherds.

His first “birth announcement” was sent to a group of men who didn’t have “degrees”, didn’t have it “all together” and probably weren’t in their “dream job…” Yet God used them right where they were at and now, thousands of years later we are reading about this heavenly birth announcement God decided to start with them.

Shepherds, these were men who:

… held an occupation that didn’t hold respect.

… go unnamed…..yet were chosen by God to be the very “birth announcers…” the first ones to share and tell others about the “good news of great joy that will be for all people…”

God chose them, the unseen, unnamed…..to tell of the “Good News.”

I love that He sees and chooses those who no ones else does.

If God would of had a marketing committee……I think they would have laughed at His idea of sharing this important birth announcement  with these lowly shepherds……yet I love that my God’s ways are not man’s ways……for God looks at our hearts.

I LOVE that about God!

I believe God has a tender spot for those who care for His “lambs.”

Many times as moms, whether we work inside our outside the home, we feel our work done in our homes goes unnoticed.

Unseen……

Unappreciated.

Yet I know that is not the case because God sees everything!

We, as moms, women who are raising the next generation for Christ……are modern day shepherds. Our jobs, our workload, our sleepless nights may go unnoticed by some…..but not by God.

He sees it all…..

Some of us might not hold the degrees we wish we had. Some of us might think we are not in our “dream job”, yet it’s in this job, this occupation, that we learn to touch eternity as we invest ourselves into our families…..tending to our own personal “flocks.”

It’s in the tending to our little lambs, that we can help spread the “good news of great joy for all people” …..one life at a time.

Have you ever specifically considered that, in being a mom, ( or a grandma, a daughter, sister, aunt) you have been called……YOU have a calling!

Tend to the lambs who are in your flock…..you never know what God has planned for your life.

Or who one day, may pay you a visit……

{Image credit: Marie Kelley Photography}

Love God Greatly!

 

 

 

 

 

Your Adventure Begins When You Say “Yes” to God- {Luke 2}

Welcome back to week 2 of our Living Like Jesus: Luke 1-8 online Bible study!

I’m so glad you’re joining us!

Let’s get started!

One word that stood out to me as I read and mediated on Luke 2 this past week was {Obedience}.

Mary and Joseph were both obedient to God and His plan for their lives…..even when they didn’t understand the plan.

When I was a little girl, I remember wondering why God choose Mary instead of me to be the mother of Jesus. “What was so special about her?” I remember thinking. Now as a mother myself, I see one of the reasons why God choose Mary…..she was obedient. I love reading her response to the angel when he told her she would have a child…

“I am the Lord’s servant.” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.”- Luke 1:38

Mary didn’t understand God’s plan for her life at the time she said these words…..yet she trusted and obeyed Him anyway.

What is God wanting you to trust and obey Him with today? What actions can you take this week to live more like Mary and obey God with your life….walking with Him in obedience.

I firmly believe God has an exciting adventure for all of us…..but we first have to take that step of faith….that step of obedience and trust Him. Our wonderful adventures begin with one step, are you ready to take it?

My prayer for us this week is that we will put our faith into action and like Mary….obey even when we don’t see the whole plan.

As we read chapter 2, notice how obedient Mary and Joseph were, even though they weren’t perfect, God still did something mighty through them for His glory ……God can do something mighty through you too!

Here is this week’s video….I hope you enjoy!

(If you can’t see the video click here.) 

This week we will be reading Luke 2……here is our reading plan.

Digging Deeper Resources: For those of you who would like to dig a little deeper into our scripture for this week, I’ve provided some commentary links for you to read and share with the women in your groups.

John Piper

A Big God for Little People

A Savior Is Born! Glory to God, Peace to Man

Simeon’s Farewell to the World

Preparing to Receive Christ: Looking for the Consolation of Israel

Fasting for the King’s Coming

The Son of God at 12 Years Old

John MacArthur

Testifying to Jesus: Joseph & Mary

Testifying to Jesus: Simeon, Part 1

Testifying to Jesus: Simeon, Part 2

Testifying to Jesus: Anna

The Amazing Child Who Was God, Part 1

The Amazing Child Who Was God, Part 2

The Amazing Child Who Was God, Part 3

 

Week 2 Memory Verse:

Higher resolution download link:

KJV – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/KJV%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

KJV B&W – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/KJV%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

NIV – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NIV%20-Luke%202.jpg

NIV B&W – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NIV%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

NKJV – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NKJV%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

NKJV B&W – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NKJV%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

NLT – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NLT%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

NLT B&W – Luke 2 https://dl.dropbox.com/u/97605723/NLT%20B%26W%20-%20Luke%202.jpg

We also have the image saved in a “web-friendly” format for you to save and share with your friends in your GMG groups as well.
Until next time…
Love God Greatly!
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