Your Family

Theres a wonderful promise in the Old Testament that I came to understand when I was a young boy. The promise is found in Genesis 26:6. God says to Abraham, “Through your descendants all the nations on earth will be blessed.”

When I read that as a boy, I remember thinking, This is something I can pray for my own kids someday! So, as my wife and I started our family, we prayed that prayer for each of our four boys. We said, “Lord, through these boys, please bless all the nations of the world.”

Now, there were some rough years. One of our sons, Andrew, took a big spiritual hike for about 13 years. We experienced a lot of sadness. But we kept praying, “Lord, bless the nations of the world through our boys.” And praise God, Andrew did finally surrender his life to Jesus Christ!

Now, hes an evangelist – sharing the Good News all around the world. In fact, each one of our boys is serving the Lord in different capacities. Its thrilling to watch how God has answered that prayer of ours!

So, dream great dreams for your family. No matter where your kids are right now with the Lord, dont despair. Pray for your children by name, asking God to bless the nations of the world through them. The Lord will hear, and answer!

Be Patient!

If youve had the joy of leading someone to faith in Jesus Christ, you know its one of the most thrilling experiences on earth! Knowing that another soul has entered into the Kingdom of God gives you an excitement that is beyond words! And you can begin encouraging this new believer in their faith. Now, as you begin the discipleship process, its so important to practice patience. Often we want to see someones bad habits changed overnight. We get discouraged when a new believer isnt as spiritually mature as we think they should be. But even though its important to encourage a new child of God to grow, its also important to practice patience. The reality is that it takes each of us time to mature in the Lord. I accepted the Lord as my Savior as a 12 year old boy. And even though it was a very real commitment, I didnt really begin living the Christian life in its fullness until I was 17. You see, its Gods Holy Spirit that brings the growth, not you or me. In First Corinthians 3:6 Paul says, “I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow.” So yes, keep encouraging and praying for your friend. But also, let them learn, and grow, in Gods perfect timing.

Share Your Faith this Christmas

Did you know that when Christ says “I am the light of the world; whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life” hes actually talking about today? Yes, it was true 2,000 years ago. Jesus was walking on earth in a human body. But Jesus Christ is just as alive today, friends. We must never forget that! Yes, he died on the cross to forgive us all our sins. But, He rose from the dead. Death couldnt hold him.

This Christmas, talk about a Christmas of light. Tell your family and friends about Jesus. A Christmas of light is a Christmas lived in the presence of Jesus Christ, who said “I am the light of the world.”

As you go through your holiday routine, tell people about what Jesus has done in your life. When youre shopping for Christmas presents, let the cashier know that Jesus loves them. When youre making Christmas dinner, tell your family what Jesus has done in your life.

Read Luke 2 with your children. Teach them the meaning of Christmas. Dont let this Christmas come and go without focusing on Jesus Christ. During the Christmas season people may be more open to learn about Jesus. Right now is a great opportunity to tell other people what Jesus means to you.

Hope for Today’s World

These days, we use the word “hope” all the time. “I hope this year will be better than last year and I hope the market goes up and I hope my stocks do better.” Lets “hope so.” But, real hope isnt about hoping things will go better. The hope Im talking about is reality – a living expectation – squarely based on Gods revealed promises.

When you open your heart to Christ, God actually comes into your life. Thats real! Suddenly, you know God for yourself. And it isnt a religious thing. It isnt just doing the proper thing on Sunday or Christmas or Easter. Now its a deep, personal relationship with the Living God. You become a child of God. Suddenly you have peace with God. You know youre loved. You have the Holy Spirit. Youre a new person.

The Bible says, “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” And your hope keeps on growing as you get to know God more and more each day.

The miracle of Christmas is hope. Christ came to earth as a baby to bring us this hope. He died and rose again so we might have real hope, not just “hope so.” Who has God placed in your path who needs to hear of this hope? Pray, and ask the Lord for the opportunity to lovingly, respectfully, share His hope with your friends and family.

Storms of Life

Rodriguez was a young man who called me up to talk one night on our live television show. He was really having a tough time. “Everything is falling apart,” he said. “My mom passed away, my business venture collapsed, and my daughter was diagnosed with kidney failure. Whats going on?”

As we talked, it was clear that Rodriguez knew a lot about God. But he had never completely surrendered his life to the Lord. I told Rodriguez that he really needs the guidance and direction of God. Jesus Christ came to earth not just to take us to Heaven when we die. But He also came to guide us through the storms of life.

Then Rodriguez said something very interesting. He said, “Maybe these storms are Gods way of telling me to wake up.” Wasnt that insightful? It was so true! And I had the privilege of leading this young man to the Lord on live TV!

Paul tells us in Romans 8 that nothing “will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus.” Nothing – no matter how fearsome the storm might be. That powerful truth can be the catalyst for someone you know to turn their life over to Jesus Christ. So, who in your world needs this encouragement?