Wednesday, September 29, 2010

BEAUTIFUL FEET


SHEPHERD TO SHEEP

BEAUTIFUL FEET

(Rom 10:15) …“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!”

Most people don’t like their feet. When you ask them why they will comment about some feature that “stands” out to them. They’re too big. They’re so small. I have flat feet. My toes look so weird. And on and on. But the human foot is amazing! Consider these interesting facts about your feet:

The 52 bones in your feet make up about one quarter of all the bones in your body….The average person takes 8,000-10,000 steps a day with their feet, which adds up to roughly 115,000 miles over a lifetime. That's enough walking to circle the earth four times!...There are approximately 250,000 sweat glands in a pair of feet, and they excrete as much as half a pint of moisture each day…Your average foot gets two sizes longer when you stand up…Your feet may be as much as 5 to 10 percent larger at the end of the day. Foot problems occur in women four times more than in men.

But the greatest fact about our feet comes from God’s Word. The apostle Paul tells us that every time we share our faith our feet are beautiful! That’s because they take the good news of Jesus to the lost so they can walk with the Lord! (Col 2:6) As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him.

Sharing our faith is all about walk and talk. First we have to walk with the Lord. Our life has to match our witness. Notice how the Word says to walk in Him. It’s not crawl or run. Walking is the most natural movement there is. It’s also what doctors recommend the most when it comes to getting fit. Are you walking with the Lord? Then you’ll be ready for when Jesus comes! (Gen 5:24) And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

A little girl described to her mother what she learned at Sunday school. She said, "Teacher told us about Enoch and how he walked with God." Her mother said, "Well, what about Enoch?" And the little girl put it something like this: "It seems that every day God would come by and say to Enoch, 'Enoch, would you like to walk with Me?' And Enoch would come out of his house and down to the gate, and he'd go walking with God. He got to the place that he enjoyed it so much that he'd be waiting at the gate of his house every day. And God would come along and say, 'Enoch, let's take a walk.' Then one day God came by and said, 'Enoch, let's take a long walk. I have so much to tell you.' So they were walking and walking, and finally Enoch said, 'My, it's getting late in the afternoon, I'd better get back home!' And God said to him, 'Enoch, you're closer to My home than you are to your home; so you come on home with Me.' And so Enoch went home with God."

After we walk with God then we talk for God. And what do we share? Good news! Everyone loves good news. Every day people are inundated with bad news. When we approach people and ask them if they have heard the good news they’re all ears! It’s the good news of peace. Peace with God (Rom 5:1) and the peace of God (Phil 4:6-7). And it’s glad tidings of good things. (Luke 2:10) Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.

Some people can’t walk and chew gum at the same time. But when our walk and talk get together then that makes for beautiful feet. (Eph 6:15) and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace. Time to get our gospel shoes on and tell someone about Jesus!

Louie
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

CLINT PICKENS AT CCNORCO

Clint Pickens is a GO! missionary serving in Wales, United Kingdom. He is a pastor of Calvary Chapel Swansea. He spoke last Thursday night at our midweek study. Listen to this brief video with a weighty message in the Lord.

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(Isaiah 50:4)
“The Lord GOD has given Me The tongue of the learned, That I should know how to speak A word in season to him who is weary. He awakens Me morning by morning, He awakens My ear To hear as the learned.

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

AUTUMN


SHEPHERD TO SHEEP

AUTUMN

Ahhh, autumn is here. Summer is over and the weather becomes cool. The kids are in school and it’s time for the color of leaves to change and eventually fall one by one in their seasonal dance. It’s a time of harvest and thanksgiving and brilliant orange sunsets. It’s holiday plans and baking pies and the World Series. It’s football season and long sleeve shirts and getting that jacket out of the closet. It’s so many wonderful things and a favorite season for so many. Let’s take the occasion to let autumn teach us some spiritual truths. Observe them as leaves falling and alighting at your feet on the pilgrim pathway. Study their detail and marvel at the wonders of our God.

- THE FALL: The fall reminds me of Adam and Eve and their fall in the garden. Spiritual gravity took them down in a nasty spiral to the ground. Would man ever recover? Yes! Jesus came and died on a tree! Man is now forgiven through the work of Christ on the cross. (1 Pet 2:24) who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.

The fall also reminds me of when a Christian stumbles along the way to heaven. It’s something we all can relate to. We don’t intend to but the next thing you know we are flat on our face. What do we do then? We get back up by the grace of God and move forward in our walk with the Lord. (Pro 24:16) For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again…

- HARVEST: The Bible talks about lost humanity as a harvest that needs to be taken in before it is all lost and ruined: (John 4:35) Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest! We are to pray for workers for the harvest: (Mat 9:37-38) Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” How sad it would be for one soul to be lost: (Jer 8:20) “The harvest is past, The summer is ended, And we are not saved!”

- HALLOWEEN: It’s unfortunate but Satan has his holiday in the midst of autumn. But I guess it fits into the fall! But notice Satan’s gradual descent and fall into hell. First he gets kicked out of heaven (Isa 14:12), then he gets kicked down to earth (Rev 12:9), then he is bound in the abyss (Rev 20:1-3), finally he is cast down into the lake of fire forever! (Rev 20:10). That’s Hallelujah…not Halloween!

- THANKSGIVING: The Bible says to be thankful: (Col 3:15) …and be thankful. That’s because we tend to complain so much: (Phil 2:14) Do all things without complaining and disputing. God has done so many things for us. We are to acknowledge them and to be grateful in our hearts (Psa 103:1-5). We are to give thanks even in hard times because they are working for our good: (1 Thes 5:18) in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Louie

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Friday, September 17, 2010

DAY 5 IN HONG KONG

Yesterday the conference ended so after breakfast today we sent Sharon off for the airport back to Thailand. You can somewhat see her but be assured she was radiant in the Lord. Back to serve the Lord and give all for the call!

(Psalms 34:5) They looked to Him and were radiant, And their faces were not ashamed.

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After we said goodbye to Sharon we made our way over to Hong Kong Island to Victoria Peak. We took the bus, then this ferry, then a taxi, then the tram, and finally we were there! It's a shopping mall that has many escalators for many stories of shopping. Then on the top is the famous lookout over Hong Kong. It was a fun day we had together before we go home tomorrow.

(Eccl 9:9) Live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of your vain life which He has given you under the sun, all your days of vanity; for that is your portion in life, and in the labor which you perform under the sun.

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(Eph 5:15) See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,

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(Phil 1:6) being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;

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(Mat 7:13) “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.

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Here is a table set up out on the street with free bags that say Jesus loves you in both Chinese and English. These believers put inside the bag evangelistic items such as tracts, DVD's etc. We encouraged them in the Lord. Let's reach the world for Christ...together!

(1 Cor 3:8) Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor.

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

DAY 4 IN HONG KONG


Pastor Mike Loudermilk of Calvary Chapel Korea weaves humor into an insightful message on the life of Joseph.

(Psalms 126:2) Then our mouth was filled with laughter, And our tongue with singing. Then they said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”
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This is GO! Missionary Peter White who serves with Horizon Christian Fellowship in Macau, China. It's the Las Vegas of Asia with many casinos and proves to be a challenging but rewarding place to serve the Lord.

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Ladies' Street Market. It's fun to barter!

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Crossing the street in Hong Kong. We are not in Norco!

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Shopping district and greetings from Sharon, Susan, and Cheryl.

(2 Cor 13:13) All the saints greet you.

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This is Susan Staples you just saw in the above video. She is one of our GO! missionaries serving the Lord in north Thailand among Hmong children.

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Adventures in dining!

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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

DAY 3 IN HONG KONG

Morning view outside our hotel window. Never made it outside today as it was a full day on the conference schedule.

(John 1:16) And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.
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Pastor Bob Caldwell from Calvary Chapel Boise, Idaho delivers a great message. Bob's mission emphasis is in India and Europe.
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Neal Pirolo teaches the men's workshop. Neal heads the ministry of Emmaus Road International based out of San Diego.
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The brother's praying for one another.
(Gal 6:2) Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
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Pastor John Chubik teaches the evening session. What a great Bible study!
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Missionaries are being encouraged and refreshed in the Lord. It's so good to be here and see what God is doing. The potter is shaping our hearts and making us vessels of honor for Him!:

(Isa 64:8) But now, O Lord, You are our Father; We are the clay, and You our potter; And all we are the work of Your hand.
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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

DAY 2 IN HONG KONG


Well, here is our happy group from all over Asia serving the Lord and doing what God has called them to do.

(1 Cor 1:26-29 ) For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory in His presence.

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Pastor Dave Rolph of Calvary Chapel Pacific Hills speaks on 2 Peter 1:5-7 with the title I coined as "The Dance of the Virtues."

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Tonight we enjoyed some ice cream and walking around the shopping/pedestrian section of Hong Kong. Notice the joy of the Lord on these missionaries faces!

(Psa 100:2) Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing.

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Foot massages are very popular here in Hong Kong. These signs are everywhere. It reminded me of this passage that fits our missionaries: (Rom 10:15) And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!”

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Raisin' some praise to the Lord!!

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HANDLES MESSIAH


SHEPHERD TO SHEEP

HANDLES MESSIAH

Many people have used classical music to bring a calming influence to their lives. And that’s no surprise because many of the masters were able to write so as to transport people to heaven when their compositions are performed. But what do you do when as a Christian you face a crisis? How do you handle life and get a grip? Here are some handles you can hold on to when the ride of life gets really scary.

- GOD LOVES ME. You might not understand what’s going on but it’s senseless to try and figure it out. Ours is to trust. God has our best interest in mind. (Jer 31:3) The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying: “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.

- GOD’S STRENGTH WILL SUSTAIN ME. I am weak but He is strong! (Psa 18:1-2) I will love You, O LORD, my strength. {2} The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

- I WILL COME THROUGH THIS. 176 times in the Bible the phrase “it came to pass” is used. Your situation will come to pass. You will walk through the valley and come out on the other side. (Psa 23:4) Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…

- GOOD WILL EVENTUALLY COME OUT OF THIS. God has promised to take the worst and turn it into something good. It might look bleak now but eventually things will turn around and work for you. (Rom 8:28) And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

- I HAVE THE HOPE OF HEAVEN. Things might be tough now but think of the glories of heaven that God has promised us. The weightiest of problems now will be like a feather in comparison to what lies ahead. (2 Cor 4:17) For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.

- I WILL LEARN SOMETHING BENEFICIAL FROM THIS. In crisis, all you feel is pain, not growth. That comes later. Life’s best lessons are learned in times of tragedy and sorrow. (Isa 48:17) …“I am the Lord your God, Who teaches you to profit, Who leads you by the way you should go.

- I WILL BE ABLE TO USE THIS EXPERIENCE TO HELP OTHERS. What you go through is not only for you but for others as well. That’s called getting double for your trouble. (2 Cor 1:3-4) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, {4} who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

Louie

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Monday, September 13, 2010

LOUIE AND CHERYL IN HONG KONG

Hey everybody...Cheryl and I are at the Calvary Chapel Asia Conference in Hong Kong this week. It's great to be with missionaries from all over Asia. It's a tough place to serve but these guys are doing it!

(Phil 4:13) I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
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Here we are at KFC in Hong Kong with Sharon Porterfield and Susan Staples both serving the Lord in Thailand.


Ready to be in the Word!

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This is Phil Twente who serves in the mission's ministry at Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa. He has been to Calvary Norco to teach at our Misson's Training School.



Praying for one another after the Bible study. I don't know anyone who works harder than the missionary. Many were encouraged.


(2 Tim 2:6) The hardworking farmer must be first to partake of the crops.

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What a great start! I wonder what God has in store tomorrow!!


(1 Cor 2:9) But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

THE 10/40 WINDOW


SHEPHERD TO SHEEP


THE 10/40 WINDOW

(Mat 9:36) But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.

Thoughts from the Taipei, Taiwan airport: The old saying states that when there is a window of opportunity we should seize it because it might not present itself again. We as Christians have a wonderful window of opportunity as we seek to climb into the 10/40 Window and win multitudes for Christ.

What is the 10/40 Window? The 10/40 Window is an area of the world that contains the largest population of non-Christians in the world. The area extends from 10 degrees to 40 degrees North of the equator, and stretches from North Africa across to China. Two-thirds of the world's population -- more than 4.4 billion people -- live in the 10/40 Window. 90% of the people living in the 10/40 Window are unevangelized. Many have never heard the Gospel message even once. The strongholds of Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism, and pagan animism are also centered within the 10/40 Window.

Unless something changes soon, most of these unreached people will never hear the Gospel. Why? Because it has estimated that only about one and a quarter percent ( 1.25% ) of Christian mission giving is going to missions work in the 10/40 Window. Open evangelism is difficult and even impossible because of governmental restrictions in many 10/40 Window countries.

We have so much Christianity in the West and then we hear of the 10/40 Window. Something’s not right about this disparity. "No one has the right to hear the gospel twice, while there remains someone who has not heard it once." (Oswald J. Smith) So what can we do?

- First we can pray: (Matthew 9:36-38) But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary[a] and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. 37 Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. 38 Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”

- Next, we can support the missionary enterprise there. We can get behind a missionary or a missionary organization that serves in this region. Perhaps one of us will be called to go?

- We can also visit a missionary there and see the work of the Lord firsthand. Maybe we can even do a mission project there. Our dollars can go a long way to help out. There are needs in education, fighting poverty, fresh water, medical, teaching English, and the list goes on. Let’s make the 10/40 Window our window of opportunity to serve the Lord and rescue the perishing!

Louie (Job 35:9-10; Psa 41:1-3; Eccl 4:1; Rom 10:13-15)

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Friday, September 3, 2010

SHED YOUR SKIN


SHEPHERD TO SHEEP

SHED YOUR SKIN

(1 Cor 13:11) When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

Isn’t’ it funny how when you’re young you want to be older and when you are old you want to be younger? What’s up with that? You ask a young child how old they are and they say their next age almost a year from now. And an older person will leave out their birth year on their profile! And then think about all those products that take away the gray and the wrinkles. And how about the plastic surgery advertisements that we ponder about?

I’ve been talking to young people lately graduating from high school and entering those college age years. Many of them are afraid of what lies ahead. They want to stay in those free and easy high school days where they were taken care of and their parents did everything for them. Then on down the road when you get married and start having a family you’re still young and can pull off being cool. The young people’s clothing and shoes still look good on you and you feel like you still got it! Then midlife hits and a woman starts to look at herself aging in the mirror of reality. The man’s hair starts turning gray and falling out. Then when you are a senior (and for Denny’s that starts at 55!) you look down and ask who’s old person’s hands are those?

The Bible dignifies maturity. Getting older brings a wisdom of years that the young can benefit from. (Pro 20:29) The glory of young men is their strength, And the splendor of old men is their gray head. As time moves on we are to shed our skin. We are to give up the old and embrace the new. As we lose our Youth we choose the Truth. Life is all about growing up and moving forward. Youth is preparation for the future. We are to embrace the phase we are entering or are already in. Why do we hold on so tenaciously? I believe it’s because we are uncertain about what’s ahead. We hold on to our blanket and pacifier when it’s time to go to school and learn about real life. Because of insecurity we mock maturity and resist what we are being called to.

What about you? Are you fighting the future? Are you trying to hold on to the past? Things can’t always be the same. Perhaps there has been change in your life lately and it brought about a feeling of unsettledness. That’s probably the Lord calling you on to what lies ahead. Embrace it! Don’t hold on to the past. That’s not a safe place…it’s a prison. You’ll be locked up in history and you won’t be free to interface with what the present is offering you.

Dear soul, the path ahead of you leads to eternal life. God loves you and the future is good! We are going to see Jesus face to face! Go forward with confidence. Shed your skin!

Louie (Phil 3:12-14)

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