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John Shirk

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Why Jesus Died Part One

john : May 11, 2010 9:36 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – When we draw attention to the Bible verses that highlight why Jesus died, we may at times be emotionally moved by the reality of God’s amazing grace. If ever there was an expression of true, unselfish love, it would be at the cross of the Christ.

First Thessalonians 5:9 and 10 says, “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him.”

The community of believers will have their day in heaven, when we will be in His presence, seeing Jesus face to face. Right now, Jesus is with us too through the gift of the Holy Spirit. The message of the cross teaches us that through faith in Christ, we are not alone. The Lord is with us to love us, help us, and guide us in the truth. God’s presence is a precious gift, and this treasure will only grow on the believer as the believer grows in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

That’s today’s Mission Statement for representing Jesus in the world today.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Adding delight to duty

john : May 10, 2010 10:02 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Philips Brooks once said, “Duty makes us do things well, but love makes us do them beautifully.”

Sometimes duty gets a bad rap, because of the drudgery that comes from doing things out of a sense of duty. However, having a sense of duty shows that we own up to our responsibilities. What would happen if we put delight into duty? Is that possible?

In 2 Corinthians 9:7, the Apostle Paul was encouraging the church in Corinth to offer gifts to Christians who were in need in Jerusalem. He said, “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

If our giving comes only from a sense of duty, we will focus mainly on what needs to be done. We will be bound by the thought, “I have to do this.” We will be motivated by guilt and obligation. This is an unsustainable track for victorious living. If, however, our giving is with delight, we will be freed by the thought, “I get to do this.” We will be moved by love to give with joy. This is a sustainable track for victorious living. We can be a cheerful giver by delighting in the Lord and in His generosity toward us through the gift of Jesus.

That’s today’s Mission Statement for representing Jesus in the world today.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Whatever happened to Sheila Walsh?

john : May 7, 2010 4:32 pm : John Shirk

Sheila's Biography Image

JOHN SHIRK – I have always enjoyed the music of Sheila Walsh, from her new wave albums to her tender ballads.  Which songs from her are most memorable for you?  Here are some of my favorites: “Jesus Call Your Lambs”, “Christian”, and “Hope For the Hopeless”.  Curiosity led me to her web site to find out  what she is up to today.  As it turns out, Sheila Walsh is highly gifted beyond just the music realm.  She is active as an author and speaker as well. She is a featured speaker with America’s largest women’s conference “Women of Faith”. She also recently wrote a book called, “Beautiful Things Happen When A Woman Trusts God.”  The book includes a woman’s Bible study.  You can learn more about Sheila Walsh at the link below:

http://www.sheilawalsh.com/

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Encounters with God-Noah

john : May 7, 2010 3:51 pm : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Noah is not quoted much in the Bible. He is not a man of many words, but he is known by his faith and by his obedience to the Lord’s word. He was warned that a worldwide flood was coming. He took heed and prepared for that day by building an ark.

Genesis 7:5 says that “Noah did all that the LORD commanded him.”

Noah and his sons and his wife and son’s wives entered the ark to escape the waters of the flood. They also brought animals into the ark.

On the day that the heavens opened, the door to the ark was shut, with Noah’s family safely inside the ark. There was truly no place for the living creatures on earth to hide. For forty days the flood kept coming on the earth, and as the waters increased, they lifted the ark high above the earth.

Second Corinthians 6:2 says, “Now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.” Jesus extends His grace with open arms to the person who will receive His pardon. His saving grace becomes our reality when we confess our need for Him to be our Savior and Lord. Grace is kind of like that open door to the ark before the flood that says, “Whoever is hungry for the righteousness of Christ may come in.”
But Noah’s story is not just history. It will play out again some day in a different sort of way. Jesus says, “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.” This day is an opportunity to know the security of His grace, to be spared from God’s wrath, and to live in peace with God, with the promise of eternal life.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Prayer-For Such A Time As This

john : May 6, 2010 9:45 am : John Shirk

John Shirk – Nahum 1:7 is this year’s verse for the National Day of Prayer. “The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him.”

If there is one significant reason why we can trust in the LORD, it’s because He cares for us. He invites us to cast all our anxiety on Him. These are anxious times. Whatever our specific needs, we can take our concerns to the throne of grace through prayer.

In prayer, we are invited to confess our sins, seek God’s wisdom, ask for His help, thank God for His blessings, praise Him for His attributes, and pray for others who need God’s help. A day like today reminds us of God’s will that we pray for our nation’s leaders.

Prayer is an opportunity to lean on Jesus and build a vibrant relationship with Him. In prayer, we learn to see Jesus more clearly in the midst of our troubles, with the assurance that He is greater than our troubles. Whatever our concerns about this nation, this is a good day to take refuge in His grace, and pray for His name to be honored in our land.

That’s today’s Mission Statement for representing Jesus in the world today.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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A Spiritual Health Exam for the choices we make

john : May 5, 2010 10:39 am : John Shirk

John Shirk – Sometimes we go to the doctor for a physical check up to measure how healthy we are.  The Bible encourages us to examine our spiritual health.  Lamentations 3:40 says, “Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the LORD.”

It takes a humble heart to do an honest evaluation of ourselves.  There are a number of questions we can ask ourselves to find out if our decisions are honoring God.

The Purity Test.  Can I do this to the body where Christ dwells?  First Corinthians 6:20 urges us to honor God with our bodies.

The Partner Test.  Could I invite Christ to do this with me?   Colossians 3:17 says, “Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.”

The Presence Test.  Would I want to be found doing this at the return of Jesus?  First John 2:28 says, “And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears, we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming.”

These are some helpful questions we can ask ourselves to assess the wisdom of our daily choices.

That’s today’s Mission Statement for representing Jesus in the world today.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Guess which Classic Christian band is getting back together

john : May 4, 2010 1:40 pm : John Shirk

They’re baaaack….The original members of the Classic Christian rock band Petra have been reunited. Jesus Freak Hideout reports that the original members are back together. Greg X. Volz, John Lawry, Louie Weaver, Bob Hartman, and Mark Kelly. They are reported to be entering the studio this summer, recording a CD of previous hits from previous albums. Classic songs like “More Power To Ya”, “Judas Kiss”, “Adonai”, and “Beat The System” will be revamped with a modern production edge. Read more at the links below:

http://www.classicpetra.com/

http://www.jesusfreakhideout.com/news/2010/05/02.CLASSIC%20PETRA%20LINEUP%20ANNOUNCE%20TOUR%20AND%20NEW%20RECORDING.asp

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How God works in us

john : May 4, 2010 10:59 am : John Shirk

Today’s Mission Statement focuses on the work of God in our hearts.

Philippians 2:13 tells us that it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.

The purpose of God for our lives is to make us mature in the faith and productive witnesses of the Gospel.  We need the Lord’s help to grow in these ways.  Here are some of the ways that God works in the believer’s heart.

He refreshes us.  Acts 2:19 says, “Repent then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.

He also purifies us. In Psalm 51, in the midst of confessing his sins, David prayed, “Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Create in me a pure heart, O God.”

He equips us through His Word. 2 Timothy 3:17 tells us that all Scripture equips the man of God for every good work.

He also mobilizes us. He sends us out for ministry. In John 20:21, Jesus said to His disciples, “As the Father sent me, I am sending you.”  He refreshes us, purifies us, equips us, and mobilizes us to live out His good purposes right here and right now.

That’s today’s Mission Statement for representing Jesus in the world today.

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And the mission goes on…Will you join?

john : May 3, 2010 11:05 am : John Shirk

Today’s Mission Statement focuses on the spread of the Gospel.

In Acts 1:8, Jesus said to His disciples, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Jesus had taken a group of ordinary, unschooled men and trained them to become movers and shakers for the Gospel.  The Good News would start in Jerusalem, and spread to the world from there.
This work was not a man-made initiative.  This was God’s idea, and He would provide the power for their witness. 

Followers of Jesus are continuing this journey of being His witnesses to the ends of the earth.  We can share the Gospel in a number of ways.  First, look to the Lord and His strength.  Commit each day to God and ask Him to give opportunities to represent Jesus to other people.  As we commit ourselves to God in prayer, we can anticipate that God will give us witnessing opportunities.  He can touch others through our witness with deeds of love, words of truth, the attitude of humility, and the example of godly living.

That’s today’s Mission Statement for representing Jesus in the world today.

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Whatever Happened to….James Ward?

john : April 30, 2010 2:43 pm : John Shirk

We heard his music in the 1980′s.  Songs like Pray, Pray, Pray, Faith Takes A Vision, and Good Advice. He has also made appearances at recent Creation Festivals.  Today, James Ward resides in Chattanooga with his wife Beth.  They have two grown-up children. Currently, he serves full-time at his home church, New City Fellowship. He has served in ministry there since the church’s beginning 30 years ago. You can catch up or get acquainted with this Christian music pioneer at his website:

http://jameswardmusic.com/

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