Intro for the week of 2/27/2012

Hi this is Dorette Schaal with an Encouraging Word for your day.  This week we’re continuing to explore how we can love more like Jesus.  When Jesus invited us to love like Him, He not only told us how to love, but He demonstrated it by how he lived.  As we near the end of this month, we will continue to discover how we can connect more deeply with Jesus, and be transformed into His image.   I hope you are realizing that you can change! He is being formed in you.  Here is your encouraging word for today.

Loving Like Jesus Sunday

I read a quote once that said this, “Not everyone can be famous, but everyone can be great through serving.”  If we want to be great in the kingdom of God, we have to have the heart of a servant.  Jesus definitely lived that!  He also showed that to be a servant, we do have to put our flesh under.  One important dynamic to both of these qualities is selflessness.  In a world where it is easy to boast about our accomplishments, Jesus lived what he taught about, not letting the right hand know what the left hand was doing.  Probably even those who were closest to him had no idea of all the kind things He did to those He came in contact with.  Jesus realized that living the best life is all about giving, and releasing the desire to have things my own way.  In reality, Jesus path was harder than we can ever imagine.  He chose to yield to the Father’s will.  Instead of saying I will be, I will do or I will decide, Jesus chose to yield to God.  What God wills is what I will be, I will do or I will decide.  With that emphasis, we do become more like Christ.  We are saying our will doesn’t have more precedence than God’s will.  A statement by Jennifer Kennedy Dean says it so well.  “When the flesh life in the soul has been crucified, the soul is free to live in resurrection power.” And consider this, the same power, that conquered the grave, LIVES IN YOU!

Eword for kids Saturdays

I bet you like to get new clothes every once in a while.  When you do get something new, it is a good idea to give something old away.  We started doing that when my kids were young, and it keeps us from getting way too much stuff.  But what if you got something new, and then went to school with your new clothes on, but forgot to take a shower, or comb your hair, or even brush your teeth.  Putting something new over something that isn’t clean, isn’t a good idea.  Do you know when we gave our heart to Jesus, he gave us brand new clothes to wear.  They are called robes of righteousness.  But not only did He take care of the outside, he washed us clean on the inside!  So when we get our new clothes of righteousness, we don’t look half dressed.  We are clean from the inside out.  When it comes to loving like Jesus, we are made to be like Him, so we have everything we need to begin showing the love of God to those around us.  We can love like He does, because we are changed from the inside out.  How cool is that!

Loving Like Jesus Friday

What do you think heaven on earth looks like?  From a Christian perspective, I think we can have a taste of what heaven is like when we decide to be self less and put to death the works of the flesh.  We get to experience what heaven is like.  Can you imagine no selfishness, no self-centeredness, no narcissism, no obsession with who will be first, or whose name will be in lights.  In heaven, it is all about Jesus.  If we want heaven on earth, our lives need to be all about Jesus.  All the benefits of heaven will invade our lives when we make Jesus our central focus.  Jesus prayed that God’s will would be done on earth as it is in heaven.  Can you do more of God’s will on earth?  Yes! Will it make you experience more of heaven on earth?  Yes!   To make your earth walk more heavenly, walk with Jesus every day.  Spend time with Him every day.  Obey his word, every day.  Worship Him every day.  Share His love with others, every day. When being a Christian is more than a Sunday thing, and really becomes what the word Christian means, which is “Christ like ones”, we will have a greater impact in our world, starting right where we live, in our homes.  So be Jesus today.  Love like Jesus today.  He is changing you from the inside out.

Loving Like Jesus Thursday

When you think of dying to self, there is probably no better picture in your mind than that of Jesus hanging on the cross.  He took dying to self to the very nth degree for us.  The days and weeks leading up to Jesus’ death on a cross show us that he took dying to self seriously, and that it was a way of life for Him.  Looking in John 13 we see Jesus washing the feet of His disciples.  Foot washing was work that was left for the slaves, but Jesus lovingly and carefully washed the disciple’s feet.  It was the ultimate ac t of humility just hours before his trial and crucifixion.  Why do you think Jesus could submit to his disciples in this manner?  The most obvious answer is that He knew who He was.  He came from God, and He would return to heaven, but He lived on earth confident of His identity.  He lived as if God was with Him, and that is the way we are meant to live.  Daily we have God with us!  Daily we are who He says we are.  We are believers, that is what we are and that is what we do!  Think about that.  Believers believe.  When we are confident of who we are, dying to self isn’t an issue.  It becomes an outworking of God within us.  Jesus came to serve, we do the same.  Jesus came to love, we do the same.  Jesus died to self, we do the same.  Our focus and life emphasis totally changes from that time on.  What a wonderful way to live.

Loving Like Jesus Wednesday

We don’t often talk about death to self, in a world where it is all about looking out for number one.  But the Bible tells us to recon, or consider, ourselves dead to sin, and to put off the old man, and to put on the new man, which is created in righteousness and true holiness.   The unredeemed soul expresses itself by being self centered , self worshipping, self involved, and self focused.  The redeemed soul should do just the opposite!  So death to self can look like this:

We no longer have to insist on our own way

We no longer have to be concerned about what others think about us

We no longer have to try to get people to notice us

We no longer have to think that we always have the right answer

We no longer have to defend ourselves, or get defensive

We no longer have to look to others for affirmation

We no longer have to be focused on what is mine

When we begin to put our focus on others, and keep our eyes on Jesus, dramatic changes can happen in our lives that will affect our world.  If we got everyone doing that, what a different world we would live in!  Let’s begin to live selflessly.  Let’s make changes that will last a lifetime!

Loving Like Jesus Tuesday

God is not pushy!  We have a God who is a gentleman.  Jesus demonstrated this and the Holy Spirit also doesn’t push us either.  God gives us some great big hints that He wants us to choose Him and choose Life and choose to live daily for Him, but he has given us a free will that gives us the opportunity to make up our own mind.  This quality of our God shows his servant’s heart.  He will give us the opportunity, but ultimately, His desire is that we choose the right way on our own.  Can you think about ways that God has given you opportunities to experience his goodness in your own life in even hidden ways?  I know there are times in my day, that I know God has laid out little jewels for me to encourage and strengthen me.  They are sweet surprises that happen that can be as simple as getting a close parking spot at Costco, or running into someone at a store or the office who has an encouraging thought or word for me.  It also happens quite often that I am reading the Word, and some phrase or sentence will connect with something that is going on in my world today.  God has a way of “sneaking” those little miracle moments into our lives to be a blessing to us.   Those divine appointments and God moments can be the little nudge from God that He’s got you on his mind.  What a wonderful way for God to be incognito in our lives! Today, look for ways you can choose God in every decision you make, and then keep your eyes open.  There are some jewels from Jesus hidden somewhere for you today.

Loving like Jesus Intro

Hi this is Dorette Schaal with an Encouraging Word for your day. This week we’re going to be exploring how we can love more like Jesus. When Jesus invited us to love like Him, He not only told us how to love, but He demonstrated it by how he lived. During this journey we have been discovering how we can connect more deeply with Jesus, and be transformed into His image. Here is your encouraging word for today.

Loving Like Jesus Monday

This week we will be talking about 2 other attributes of Jesus that we can become more like.  He was a servant leader and He was able to put his flesh under, and die to himself, to obey the will of God.  I read a quote once that said this, “Not everyone can be famous, but everyone can be great through serving.”  If we want to be great in the kingdom of God, we have to have the heart of a servant.  Jesus definitely lived that!  He also showed that to be a servant, we do have to put our flesh under.  One important dynamic to both of these qualities is selflessness.  In a world where it is easy to boast about our accomplishments, Jesus lived what he taught about, not letting the right hand know what the left hand was doing.  Probably even those who were closest to him had no idea of all the kind things He did to those He came in contact with.  Jesus realized that living the best life is all about giving, and releasing the desire to have things my own way.  In reality, Jesus path was harder than we can ever imagine.  He chose to yield to the Father’s will.  Instead of saying I will be, I will do or I will decide, Jesus chose to yield to God.  What God wills is what I will be, I will do or I will decide.  With that emphasis, we do become more like Christ.  We are saying our will doesn’t have more precedence than God’s will.  A statement by Jennifer Kennedy Dean says it so well.  “When the flesh life in the soul has been crucified, the soul is free to live in resurrection power.” And consider this, the same power, that conquered the grave, LIVES IN YOU!