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John Shirk

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The Value of Rest for our Mission

john : May 20, 2010 8:31 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Jesus said in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

You might wonder what the connection is between rest and mission. It’s actually quite simple. We need energy to be effective in our mission. God does not call us to service to the point of burn out. Jesus is talking to those who are weary and burdened, and he invites us to find rest in Him. He is gentle and humble in heart. His teaching is true wisdom. His love is real refreshment. His forgiveness is authentic freedom from guilt.

He invites us to spend time with Him daily, to learn His ways, and follow His example. Then, with a clearer focus of Jesus, the Lord will define our mission and show us how to express our love for Him to a world that desperately needs Him.

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

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Faithfulness in the little things

john : May 18, 2010 10:16 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Jesus said in Luke 16:10, “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.”

In the little things, big statements are made about our character.  We might look at someone else’s talents and be tempted to say, “If only I had so-and-so’s ability, I could do great things for God.”  But the big question is “what are we doing with what we have?”  Anne Graham Lotz has said, “Don’t concentrate on what you lack, concentrate on what you have. Then give it all to Jesus for His use.”  That is the first step toward faithful management of our resources.  Commit them to Jesus for His honor and glory.  Some examples of faithful service are found in Romans 12:8:  Those gifted in the area of contributing to the needs of others are to give generously.  Those gifted in leadership are to govern diligently.  Those who are gifted in showing mercy are to do it cheerfully.  As we are faithful in what we have, don’t be surprised to find God entrusting us with more.  Perhaps more resources or perhaps a bigger platform, as we are faithful to God with what we have been given.

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

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Why Our Work Matters to God

john : May 17, 2010 12:59 pm : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Recently, on Probe, Sue Bohlin asked the question, “Does our work matter to God?”  Through eyes of faith, we see our vocation as more than a 9 to 5 routine.  We learn to see the value of work beyond the paycheck.

Here is what Sue Bohlin said, “Through work, we serve people. Through work, we meet our own needs. Through work, we meet our families’ needs.  Through work, we earn money to give to others. Through work, we love God.  We bring glory to God by working industriously, demonstrating what He is like, and serving others by cooperating with God to meet their needs. In serving others, we serve God. And that is why our work matters to God.”

Because of Jesus, our work for Him has a redemptive purpose. What does He have for you to do today?  Perhaps your work for God is related to your vocation, perhaps your labor is as a volunteer. Either way, God is glorified in the work of a faithful believer. First Corinthians 15:58 says, “Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”

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 the Sweet Comfort Band?

john : May 14, 2010 9:26 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Born New Year’s Eve 1972, the Sweet Comfort Band consisted of Rick Thompson on drums and vocals, Kevin Thompson on bass, and Bryan Duncan on keys and vocals.  Later in 1976, Randy Thomas would join the band on guitar and vocals. They put together some memorable Christian albums in the days of vinyl, like “Breaking The Ice”, “Hearts Of Fire”, and “Cutting Edge”. The band went their separate ways in 1984, but then reunited for a special concert at the Creation Festival in 2001.  What may surprise you is that they are planning to get together in 2010 to record a new album with some new songs. One of their goals for this album is to benefit Kevin Thompson, who according to ASSIST News, is now a quadriplegic.  He is facing his disability with a sense of joy and new ministry.  Check out the links below for more details on the Sweet Comfort Band:

http://www.sweetcomfort.com/

http://www.assistnews.net/Stories/2009/s09060009.htm

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Why Jesus Died Part Three

john : May 13, 2010 9:30 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – First John 4:9 and 10 says, “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Only through Jesus can we be restored to a right relationship with God, the Father. According to the Bible, the message of the cross is the source of God’s power to the Christian. (First Corinthians 1:18) Through Jesus we live and move and have our being. He is our source of strength, by which we can do productive things for God. Without Him, we can do nothing. (John 15:5) The message of the cross humbles us to rely on God’s strength instead of depending on our own.

By faith in Jesus Christ to save us, we have the reality of eternal life and the power to live a productive life that brings glory to His name.

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

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Why Jesus Died Part Two

john : May 12, 2010 9:50 am : John Shirk

JOHN SHIRK – Second Corinthians 5:15 says, “And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised again.”

It is tempting for man to put himself at the center of his own universe. There was a time when most people believed the earth was at the center of our universe, not the sun. When Galileo challenged that way of thinking, he was branded as a heretic. Sometimes, there is personal cost involved for speaking up for the truth.

Spiritually speaking, the death of Jesus challenges our self-centered view of the world, and gives us a cause to live for outside ourselves. Instead of living for selfish desires, the cross teaches us to live for the glory of God. We can find greater fulfillment in this life and life with Jesus beyond the grave with a responsive heart to the Gospel. Jesus gives us meaningful purpose and direction through the expression of His love. He paid our debt of sin, so that we could live in freedom and for the honor of His name.

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

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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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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