The Christian Resource Group

Opinion. Observation. Application.

There is a Step/Process We are Missing…

There is a step we are missing in our effort to keep people calm and encourage them during this stressful time of dealing and living through the COVID 19 pandemic.  Let’s look at the thing we are missing through the lens of two Scriptures.  Psalm 91:10 says, “No evil shall befall me and my family, nor shall any plague come near our dwellings.”  However, BEFORE WE GET THAT FAR WE MUST THINK THROUGH (on a personal scale) Proverbs 5–“For your ways are in full view of the Lord and He examines all your paths.”  The missing (step/process) emerges in 2 Chronicles 7:14–“If my people, who are called by my name, will HUMBLE themselves and pray, AND SEEK MY FACE AND TURN FROM THEIR WICKED WAYS, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.  The missing step?  REPENTANCE.  Yes.  In a rush to deal with fear or to just make each other feel better, we are forgetting the essential first step in coming to God is the (“humble yourself”) part.  “Humble” is not prayer.  “Humble” means to come to God repentant.  God wants to hear us repent of our sins and then to “stand in the gap” and be an intercessor for others.  We need to repent of the sins of our nation.  The sins of our world.  Personally, repentance is an inner change of heart that produces the fruit of new behavior.  Christians understand that Jesus is the sacrifice lamb that was slain.  Through out eternity our song will be “Worthy.  Worthy is the lamb.”  John the Baptist remarked upon seeing Jesus on the banks of the Jordan River after previously mentioning it every time his own disciples would tell him about the exploits of Jesus they had heard from others, “Behold the lamb of God.”  The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross removes our sin (and the record of our sin), HOWEVER (and there is the “HOWEVER”) FIRST–we must repent.  For this pandemic to end, we must first repent, and then we pray.  If we don’t repent our hearts become hardened and we become self reliant rather than “God” reliant.  The end result of a lack of repentance is seen in Revelation 9:20–“The rest of mankind that were not killed by these plagues did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons (their addictive behaviors), and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood (their bank accounts, IRA’s, homes, cars, toys, and “stuff”), idols that can not see or hear or walk, nor did they repent of their murders (abortion), their magic arts, their sexual immorality, or their thefts (greed).”  The reason all of these continued is because their was no REPENTANCE to begin the process.  Christian Leaders:  We can not leave out this important step.  We need to lead our people through the process of repentance.  Personal repentance.  Church repentance. Organized religion (denominational) repentance.  National repentance.  World repentance.  All through Scripture the first thing everyone did before the answer came (the healing came) was repent.  The first and most prominent thing we need to repent of is………PRIDE.  Here is my prayer….enjoin it or pray your own:  “Father, forgive me.  I get too full of myself so many times.  I think there are things I am in control of, or can control, or are on my own.  Forgive me because I need to surrender more fully to you.  I need to surrender myself, and everything I am more deeply into your care.  Forgive me of my sins.  Any sin.  Every sin.  Forgive those of us who lead others.  We need You, Your direction, Your leading, Your wisdom.  We try to operate in our own power and strength.  Forgive us.  At times like this we realize we have become self-deceived in our own  leadership.  We concern ourselves with what other’s think of us, more than honoring and glorifying YOU.  Forgive us of our self-importance.  You alone–(God)–You alone are enough.  Forgive us as a nation for so many of our sins starting with our pride.  Help us return to you, because we have lost our spiritual way.  Bring us back to you.  In Jesus’name.  Amen”

Genesis 1:2-3

Genesis 1:1

ONE YEAR AGO TODAY!

365 Bonus Days in a row!  So grateful to God and thankful for the many opportunities in ministry over the last year.  I have tied to enjoy every single moment and capture each moment I could.  The feeling I had one year ago today hasn’t gone away.  Every day is a Bonus Day.  I don’t take anything or any one for granted.  I enjoy every single moment I have with people–family and friends AND strangers. I am thankful for my ministry friends near and far.  The Board of TCRG, and the donors that support our ministry.  I am most thankful for my wonderful, loving, and helpful, wife–Marceil.  She is there for me every single minute.  She has had to endure every kind of cardiac recovery emotion and cardiac brain.  I am so thankful for every Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc

BONUS DAY #339

We spent this bonus day traveling to the funeral of a dear friend who passed away suddenly at 55 years old.  It occurred to me during the service that she was the one who was experiencing the true BONUS!  (Only her’s was the “never ending day”)….Further, the “Bonus Day” part of what I am experiencing and she is experiencing is:  CONNECTING PEOPLE WITH GOD!  Every day is another opportunity to connect more people to God.

Every day is a Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc

BONUS DAY #338

Watching my 10 year old grandson run all over the house gathering up the presents and following the clues his sister designed for him the day before, always brings me back to Jesus’ “of such is the Kingdom of Heaven.”  The heart of the child is the heart of the Kingdom of Heaven.  I have always learned a lot out about the Kingdom of Heaven from children (my own children and grandchildren) and other children I have been around.  Watching, observing, and applying the heart of a child is an important part of our own spiritual development.

Every day is a Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc

BONUS DAY #337

If a person isn’t “getting it” it probably isn’t a result of people trying to help.  Not “getting it” has to do with some kind of block a person has with in their own processing of information and input in their life.  The only thing we can do to help others is to:  1.  Be honest.  2.  Lay it out.  3.  Listen carefully.  4.  Synthesize new information.  5.  Lay it out again.  6.  PULL YOUR HAIR OUT AND SCREAM!  (Ha!  The #6 means you have done everything you can do to help).  NOW–you have to do whatever is necessary for the situation to move forward.  A person either “can’t” execute or “won’t” execute.  Either/both of these problems is solvable.

Every day is a Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc

BONUS DAY #335

Every day I am reminded how we really don’t know what someone else is enduring.  We can try to relate or even think the over-used adage, “I know what you are going through,” but we trying don’t know what someone else is going through.  Some years ago I started saying:  “Make excuses for people”–meaning–put yourself in their shoes.  Try to go best yourself and look into what other people might be facing in their lives.  Doing so will make your own life richer, better.

Every day is a Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc

BONUS DAY #334

We are getting ready to tackle a new ministry venture–Transitional Pastor.  I made up the name, while Scott Alldridge, the TCRG Board Chairman came up with the idea.  A Pastor who has all the authority of a Lead Pastor but is setting things in order of a Church (“setting” the pace and developing the vision), so that the Church is not waiting around for the next guy to do both of those things.  Churches need to obtain and maintain “traction” and it is hard to do if they are setting around waiting on the next person coming in as the Lead Pastor to do it for them.  Marceil and I appreciate your prayers as we tackle this next project.  Hopefully, it will lead to a new shift in Church development in these Last Days before Christ’s return.

Every day is a Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc

BONUS DAY #333

It is hard to know where to look or stare in a bank line that is waiting for one teller whose window is open.  Three people ahead and five, then six, then seven, then eight behind me.  I know these places have managers, but it perplexes me how certain things just get overlooked.  Is it lunch time at 2 PM?  (Lunch shifts)  It is hard to have a conversation waiting in a bank line with people you don’t know, because the transactions they hold in their hands are personal items.  Pray?  Yes, of course you can pray…pray and stare.  That’s it though, isn’t it?  Pray.  All the time–without hesitation and without complaint in your spirit–make every moment count.  Call on God.  Bring Him into the boredom of the bank line up!

Every day is a Bonus Day!

Much Love,

Marc