How will you want to be remembered?


As I think about the past and focus on the future one thing that comes to mind is the word legacy. What am I and can I do to leave a legacy behind me that will provide benefits to the ones I love and to the people I have been blessed enough to rub shoulders with and work with and serve with. What can I do to ensure that people remember me in a light that points them to the light and the way and the truth? Is there anything I would need to get rid or get out of the way to make this happen? Is there anything I need to add into my day, my routine, my life to ensure that the legacy that is left behind is a godly one that glorifies God and points people to the truth that He is real? There are many times when I reflect on this subject…New Year, Birthdays (mine and my family members), and Mornings when I seek God through my time with Him and in His Word.

How will you be remembered?


This morning’s reading makes me think of the way Judas is remembered because of his actions and decisions.

3When Judas, the traitor, learned that Jesus had been condemned, he repented and took back the thirty silver coins to the chief priests and the elders. 4“I have sinned by betraying an innocent man to death!” he said.“What do we care about that?” they answered. “That is your business!” 5Judas threw the coins down in the Temple and left; then he went off and hanged himself. 6The chief priests picked up the coins and said, “This is blood money, and it is against our Law to put it in the Temple treasury.” 7After reaching an agreement about it, they used the money to buy Potter’s Field, as a cemetery for foreigners. 8That is why that field is called “Field of Blood” to this very day. 9Then what the prophet Jeremiah had said came true: “They took the thirty silver coins, the amount the people of Israel had agreed to pay for him, 10and used the money to buy the potter’s field, as the Lord had commanded me.”

~ from Matthew 27 (GNT)

Our words and our actions have an impact on how we will be remembered. He was a follower of Jesus, he hung out with him for all that time, but in the end how is he remembered? What is the legacy left behind? So we need to run this race called life to the full and to the end. We can’t let up because the devil is going to try and put up roadblocks and barriers every step of the way in order to try and make you stumble and fall. He doesn’t want you to spend eternity with God, he wants you to spend it apart from God with him who is already condemned by Jesus’ victory at the cross over death and Jesus’ ultimate victory when the final battle is won and played out. So let’s get thing straightened out now. Let’s put the past behind us and allow forgiveness to rule the day…Let’s forgive others! Let’s ask God to forgive us! Let’s ask others we have or may have hurt to forgive us! (It’s our responsibility to ask for forgiveness…in doing so we are obedient and can proceed, God will work out their part with them.) Let’s shine our light bright in this dark world! Let’s walk in LOVE to all those we encounter!

Life in God’s Service

1So then, my friends, because of God’s great mercy to us I appeal to you: Offer yourselves as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to his service and pleasing to him. This is the true worship that you should offer. 2Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God—what is good and is pleasing to him and is perfect. 3And because of God’s gracious gift to me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you should. Instead, be modest in your thinking, and judge yourself according to the amount of faith that God has given you. 4We have many parts in the one body, and all these parts have different functions. 5In the same way, though we are many, we are one body in union with Christ, and we are all joined to each other as different parts of one body. 6So we are to use our different gifts in accordance with the grace that God has given us. If our gift is to speak God’s message, we should do it according to the faith that we have; 7if it is to serve, we should serve; if it is to teach, we should teach; 8if it is to encourage others, we should do so. Whoever shares with others should do it generously; whoever has authority should work hard; whoever shows kindness to others should do it cheerfully. 9Love must be completely sincere. Hate what is evil, hold on to what is good. 10Love one another warmly as Christians, and be eager to show respect for one another. 11Work hard and do not be lazy. Serve the Lord with a heart full of devotion. 12Let your hope keep you joyful, be patient in your troubles, and pray at all times. 13Share your belongings with your needy fellow Christians, and open your homes to strangers. 14Ask God to bless those who persecute you—yes, ask him to bless, not to curse. 15Be happy with those who are happy, weep with those who weep. 16Have the same concern for everyone. Do not be proud, but accept humble duties. Do not think of yourselves as wise. 17If someone has done you wrong, do not repay him with a wrong. Try to do what everyone considers to be good. 18Do everything possible on your part to live in peace with everybody. 19Never take revenge, my friends, but instead let God’s anger do it. For the scripture says, “I will take revenge, I will pay back, says the Lord.” 20Instead, as the scripture says: “If your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them a drink; for by doing this you will make them burn with shame.” 21Do not let evil defeat you; instead, conquer evil with good.

~ from Romans 12

Let’s live different! Let’s be different! Let’s help! Let’s serve! Let’s be humble! Let’s be servants! Let’s do what is right! Let’s allow God to be God in and through our lives!


Thank You Lord for this new day and for everything within it. Help me Lord to make this day about You and all that You will be glorified and lifted up. Help me Lord to be who You have created, purposed, and lead me to be. Help me Lord daily for it is only by your grace that I am able to do and accomplish and finish the word You have set for me to accomplish. May this day be filled with things that will bring You all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.


A Song of Praise and Thanksgiving

1Praise God with shouts of joy, all people!

2Sing to the glory of his name;

offer him glorious praise!

3Say to God, “How wonderful are the things you do!

Your power is so great

that your enemies bow down in fear before you.

4Everyone on earth worships you;

they sing praises to you,

they sing praises to your name.”
5Come and see what God has done,

his wonderful acts among people.

6
He changed the sea into dry land;
our ancestors crossed the river on foot.

There we rejoiced because of what he did.

7He rules forever by his might

and keeps his eyes on the nations.

Let no rebels rise against him.

8Praise our God, all nations;

let your praise be heard.

9He has kept us alive

and has not allowed us to fall.
10You have put us to the test, God;

as silver is purified by fire,

so you have tested us.

11You let us fall into a trap

and placed heavy burdens on our backs.

12You let our enemies trample us;

we went through fire and flood,

but now you have brought us to a place of safety.
13I will bring burnt offerings to your house;

I will offer you what I promised.

14I will give you what I said I would

when I was in trouble.

15I will offer sheep to be burned on the altar;

I will sacrifice bulls and goats,

and the smoke will go up to the sky.
16Come and listen, all who honor God,

and I will tell you what he has done for me.

17I cried to him for help;

I praised him with songs.

18If I had ignored my sins,

the Lord would not have listened to me.

19But God has indeed heard me;

he has listened to my prayer.
20I praise God,

because he did not reject my prayer

or keep back his constant love from me.

~from Psalm 66 (GNT)

Who are you?


Who do people say you are? What do people say you do? Who do people think you are? What do people think you do? But who are you? What do you do? What do you believe? What do you think? How do you live? What is your purpose? What is your plan? What is your goal?

It’s interesting to reflect on these questions as the answers can be eye opening. It’s interesting to consider as it speaks to what you’ve done to create this impression. It’s interesting to consider the sources too.

Today’s reading when Jesus is being questions by the Jewish council, we get to see His response which opens the door to what they had been trying to do but at the same time spoke to His answer to their question.

62The High Priest stood up and said to Jesus, “Have you no answer to give to this accusation against you?” 63But Jesus kept quiet. Again the High Priest spoke to him, “In the name of the living God I now put you under oath: tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.” 64Jesus answered him, “So you say. But I tell all of you: from this time on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right side of the Almighty and coming on the clouds of heaven!” 65At this the High Priest tore his clothes and said, “Blasphemy! We don’t need any more witnesses! You have just heard his blasphemy! 66What do you think?”They answered, “He is guilty and must die.”

~from Matthew 26

Jesus speaks to the truth of where He is going “at the right side of the Almighty” as well as to the truth that He will be coming back “on the clouds of heaven”


I am a child of God. I am a husband. I am a dad. I am a son. I am a brother. I am a cousin. I am a nephew. I am a servant leader. I am a friend. I am an employee. I am a neighbor. I am a farmer.


Who are you?


Do you admit who you are? Do you confess who you are? Do you know who you are? Do you realize your part?

Don’t allow fear to hold you back! Don’t allow failures to hold you back! God created you for bigger purposes, so take a hold of that, accept His forgiveness and leave the past where it belongs behind you, and press forward into all that God has planned for you to accomplish.

We see this with Peter as he stumbled, but Jesus knew and spoke to it ahead of time, but Jesus also had plans to redeem Peter and allow Him to be the one to help get the church started.

69Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard when one of the High Priest’s servant women came to him and said, “You, too, were with Jesus of Galilee.”

70But he denied it in front of them all. “I don’t know what you are talking about,” he answered, 71and went on out to the entrance of the courtyard. Another servant woman saw him and said to the men there, “He was with Jesus of Nazareth.”
72Again Peter denied it and answered, “I swear that I don’t know that man!”
73After a little while the men standing there came to Peter. “Of course you are one of them,” they said. “After all, the way you speak gives you away!”
74Then Peter said, “I swear that I am telling the truth! May God punish me if I am not! I do not know that man!”
Just then a rooster crowed, 75and Peter remembered what Jesus had told him: “Before the rooster crows, you will say three times that you do not know me.” He went out and wept bitterly.
~from Matthew 26 (GNT)

God doesn’t change His mind! God knows what He is doing! So don’t lose hope and don’t lose faith! Put your hope and trust in Him!

God’s Mercy on All

25There is a secret truth, my friends, which I want you to know, for it will keep you from thinking how wise you are. It is that the stubbornness of the people of Israel is not permanent, but will last only until the complete number of Gentiles comes to God. 26And this is how all Israel will be saved. As the scripture says,
“The Savior will come from Zion and remove all wickedness from the descendants of Jacob.27I will make this covenant with them when I take away their sins.” 28Because they reject the Good News, the Jews are God’s enemies for the sake of you Gentiles. But because of God’s choice, they are his friends because of their ancestors. 29For God does not change his mind about whom he chooses and blesses. 30As for you Gentiles, you disobeyed God in the past; but now you have received God’s mercy because the Jews were disobedient. 31In the same way, because of the mercy that you have received, the Jews now disobey God, in order that they also may now receive God’s mercy. 32For God has made all people prisoners of disobedience, so that he might show mercy to them all.

~from Romans 11 (GNT)

Let’s rejoice and celebrate God!

Praise and Thanksgiving

1O God, it is right for us to praise you in Zion

and keep our promises to you,

2because you answer prayers.

People everywhere will come to you

3on account of their sins.

Our faults defeat us,

but you forgive them.

4Happy are those whom you choose,

whom you bring to live in your sanctuary.

We shall be satisfied with the good things of your house,

the blessings of your sacred Temple.
5You answer us by giving us victory,

and you do wonderful things to save us.

People all over the world

and across the distant seas trust in you.

6You set the mountains in place by your strength,

showing your mighty power.

7You calm the roar of the seas

and the noise of the waves;

you calm the uproar of the peoples.

8The whole world stands in awe

of the great things that you have done.

Your deeds bring shouts of joy

from one end of the earth to the other.
9You show your care for the land by sending rain;

you make it rich and fertile.

You fill the streams with water;

you provide the earth with crops.

This is how you do it:

10you send abundant rain on the plowed fields

and soak them with water;

you soften the soil with showers

and cause the young plants to grow.

11What a rich harvest your goodness provides!

Wherever you go there is plenty.

12The pastures are filled with flocks;

the hillsides are full of joy.

13The fields are covered with sheep;

the valleys are full of wheat.

Everything shouts and sings for joy.

~Psalm 65

Do you realize there is a higher purpose?


You have a calling on your life! Are you willing to go through to the end to accomplish it? Are you willing to do the heavy lifting required? Are you ready to go to the end in order to complete the task you have been sent to accomplish? Even if it isn’t comfortable and isn’t easy?

Today’s reading we read about someone whose calling makes a difference for eternity. It opened the door so that we could all be reconciled back to God and forgiven.

Jesus Prays in Gethsemane

(Mark 14.32-42; Luke 22.39-46)

36Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” 37He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee. Grief and anguish came over him, 38and he said to them, “The sorrow in my heart is so great that it almost crushes me. Stay here and keep watch with me.” 39He went a little farther on, threw himself face downward on the ground, and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, take this cup of suffering from me! Yet not what I want, but what you want.” 40Then he returned to the three disciples and found them asleep; and he said to Peter, “How is it that you three were not able to keep watch with me for even one hour? 41Keep watch and pray that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 42Once more Jesus went away and prayed, “My Father, if this cup of suffering cannot be taken away unless I drink it, your will be done.” 43He returned once more and found the disciples asleep; they could not keep their eyes open. 44Again Jesus left them, went away, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. 45Then he returned to the disciples and said, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Look! The hour has come for the Son of Man to be handed over to the power of sinners. 46Get up, let us go. Look, here is the man who is betraying me!”

~from Matthew 26 (GNT)

There is power in our words! Power to build up and to tear down! Power to speak life and speak death! Power that we need to be able to control. From the overflow of our heart, our mouth speaks! So we need to make sure we pure and clean heart for it is not what goes into us that makes us unclean, it’s what comes out of us! Jesus gave His all for us! He showed us the way! He cares for us! He has compassion for us!

Jesus Prays in Gethsemane

(Mark 14.32-42; Luke 22.39-46)

36Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” 37He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee. Grief and anguish came over him, 38and he said to them, “The sorrow in my heart is so great that it almost crushes me. Stay here and keep watch with me.” 39He went a little farther on, threw himself face downward on the ground, and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, take this cup of suffering from me! Yet not what I want, but what you want.” 40Then he returned to the three disciples and found them asleep; and he said to Peter, “How is it that you three were not able to keep watch with me for even one hour? 41Keep watch and pray that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 42Once more Jesus went away and prayed, “My Father, if this cup of suffering cannot be taken away unless I drink it, your will be done.” 43He returned once more and found the disciples asleep; they could not keep their eyes open. 44Again Jesus left them, went away, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. 45Then he returned to the disciples and said, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Look! The hour has come for the Son of Man to be handed over to the power of sinners. 46Get up, let us go. Look, here is the man who is betraying me!”

~from Matthew 26 (GNT)

Each of us has a purpose! God created us with purpose for a purpose! Have you ever read or heard about the great book A Purpose Driven Life? It speaks to and can encourage you through this journey!


Don’t lose hope, for you are not alone! Don’t lose hope for there is a remnant! Don’t lose hope!

1I ask, then: Did God reject his own people? Certainly not! I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. 2God has not rejected his people, whom he chose from the beginning. You know what the scripture says in the passage where Elijah pleads with God against Israel: 3“Lord, they have killed your prophets and torn down your altars; I am the only one left, and they are trying to kill me.” 4What answer did God give him? “I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not worshiped the false god Baal.” 5It is the same way now: there is a small number left of those whom God has chosen because of his grace. 6His choice is based on his grace, not on what they have done. For if God’s choice were based on what people do, then his grace would not be real grace. 7What then? The people of Israel did not find what they were looking for. It was only the small group that God chose who found it; the rest grew deaf to God’s call. 8As the scripture says, “God made their minds and hearts dull; to this very day they cannot see or hear.” 9And David says, “May they be caught and trapped at their feasts; may they fall, may they be punished! 10May their eyes be blinded so that they cannot see; and make them bend under their troubles at all times.”
11I ask, then: When the Jews stumbled, did they fall to their ruin? By no means! Because they sinned, salvation has come to the Gentiles, to make the Jews jealous of them. 12The sin of the Jews brought rich blessings to the world, and their spiritual poverty brought rich blessings to the Gentiles. Then, how much greater the blessings will be when the complete number of Jews is included!

~from Romans 11 (GNT)

So let’s press on and grab onto the promises God has given us! Let’s hold onto the tree of life! As we are grafted to the vine so that we can be part of God’s plan and purpose and family.

13I am speaking now to you Gentiles: As long as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I will take pride in my work. 14Perhaps I can make the people of my own race jealous, and so be able to save some of them. 15For when they were rejected, all other people were changed from God’s enemies into his friends. What will it be, then, when they are accepted? It will be life for the dead! 16If the first piece of bread is given to God, then the whole loaf is his also; and if the roots of a tree are offered to God, the branches are his also. 17Some of the branches of the cultivated olive tree have been broken off, and a branch of a wild olive tree has been joined to it. You Gentiles are like that wild olive tree, and now you share the strong spiritual life of the Jews. 18So then, you must not despise those who were broken off like branches. How can you be proud? You are just a branch; you don’t support the roots—the roots support you. 19But you will say, “Yes, but the branches were broken off to make room for me.” 20That is true. They were broken off because they did not believe, while you remain in place because you do believe. But do not be proud of it; instead, be afraid. 21God did not spare the Jews, who are like natural branches; do you think he will spare you? 22Here we see how kind and how severe God is. He is severe toward those who have fallen, but kind to you—if you continue in his kindness. But if you do not, you too will be broken off. 23And if the Jews abandon their unbelief, they will be put back in the place where they were; for God is able to do that. 24You Gentiles are like the branch of a wild olive tree that is broken off and then, contrary to nature, is joined to a cultivated olive tree. The Jews are like this cultivated tree; and it will be much easier for God to join these broken-off branches to their own tree again.

~from Romans 11 (GNT)

So today as we prepare for this day, let’s seek God for wisdom and direction. Let’s ask Him for boldness and courageousness in all He calls us to do! Let’s ask Him for protection as we step out so that in all we think, speak, and do, He will receive the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.

A Prayer for Protection

1I am in trouble, God—listen to my prayer! I am afraid of my enemies—save my life! 2Protect me from the plots of the wicked, from mobs of evil people. 3They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim cruel words like arrows. 4They are quick to spread their shameless lies; they destroy good people with cowardly slander. 5They encourage each other in their evil plots; they talk about where they will place their traps. “No one can see them,” they say. 6They make evil plans and say, “We have planned a perfect crime.” The human heart and mind are a mystery. 7But God shoots his arrows at them, and suddenly they are wounded. 8He will destroy them because of those words; all who see them will shake their heads. 9They will all be afraid; they will think about what God has done and tell about his deeds. 10All righteous people will rejoice because of what the Lord has done. They will find safety in him; all good people will praise him.

~from Psalm 64 (GNT)