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Focus on God’s Goodness-Invitation

April 23rd, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Mark 1:17.

Jesus said to Simon and his brother Andrew as they were casting a net into the lake, “Come, follow me, and I will send you out to fish for people.

Jesus was inviting these two men into a new way of life that involved following Him. For Simon and Andrew, following Jesus turned them from fishermen into evangelists. Their witness for Jesus would convince others to follow Jesus too.

Following Jesus may lead us to a career change, but then again, maybe not. What is important about accepting His invitation is that we are coming into a relationship with Jesus that gives us peace with God and a higher purpose.  So, when Jesus comes to us and says, “Follow me”, that is a good time to heed the call.

The invitation of Jesus reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Sacrifice of Jesus

April 18th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Hebrews 7:26 and 27.

Speaking of Jesus, “Such a high priest truly meets our need-one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.”

In the Old Testament, the high priest offered animal sacrifices for the sins of the people. This system was in place until the time of Christ. But according to Hebrews 10:4, it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.

Where the blood of bulls and goats failed, the blood of Jesus prevailed. His sacrifice was enough to cleanse us from sin. Hebrews 9:26 says that He has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself.

The Sacrifice of Jesus reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Nourishment of God’s Word

April 17th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Isaiah 55, verses 10 and 11.

This is what the LORD says, “As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth, and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth; it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”

God is referring to the rain cycle to highlight the refreshment of God’s Word for us. Just as rain brings nourishment to the ground, so God’s Word brings nourishment to our heart. Just as rain is vital to the growth of the crops, so God’s Word is vital to our spiritual growth in the grace of God.

The nourishment of God’s Word reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Fulfillment of God’s Word

April 16th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Jeremiah 15:16.

The prophet Jeremiah said this to the LORD, “When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, LORD God Almighty.”

Jeremiah took great delight in feeding on the words that God spoke to him. Every day is an opportunity for us to fill up on God’s Word and to draw nourishment by the expressions of God’s love written there. The Bible is reliable for building our faith so that we thrive for God’s glory.

The writer of Psalm 1 described the person who delighted in the law of the LORD as blessed. He said “That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever they do prospers.”

The fulfillment of God’s Word reveals the Goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Foundation of God’s Word

April 15th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Matthew 7:24 and 25.

Jesus wrapped up the Sermon on the Mount by saying this: “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”

The word of God is foundational to a strong faith. The Sermon on the Mount is recorded for us in Matthew chapters 5 through 7. That is a great place to start for learning about God’s plan for our lives. That is where we learn about the attitudes that God is seeking for our hearts. That is where Jesus teaches us how to pray. That is where we learn about relating with others in the way of love.

As we put those words from Jesus into practice, our witness for Jesus will have a thriving influence in the world, and our faith will be firmly rooted in the word of God.

The foundation of God’s Word reveals the Goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Focus on God’s Goodness-Truth

April 12th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in John 8, verses 31 and 32.

Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Jesus linked His teachings to truth, and He linked truth to freedom. This is the pathway, then, to true and lasting liberty-by following Jesus and living according to His teachings.

As we take the words of Jesus to heart, they will transform our heart and lead us in a life-giving direction. They will move us to express faith with love.

Jesus said in John 8:36, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”

The truth of God’s Word reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Focus on God’s Goodness-Hope From God’s Word

April 10th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Romans 15:4.

“For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide, we might have hope.”

The words of the Bible have the power to provide us with hope and encouragement as we learn about Jesus.

The Bible is where we learn about His salvation for all who call on the name of the Lord. The Bible is where we learn about God’s love for us, and the demonstration of His love at the cross and empty grave.  The Bible is where we learn about the truth that sets us free. The Bible is also where we learn about heaven, and the eternal promises that God has planned for those who love Him.

The hope of God’s Word reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Direction by His Word

April 9th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Psalm 119, verse 105.

“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.”

There is a very good reason that we can trust God’s Word to guide us in the right direction.

Psalm 18:30 says, “As for God, his way is perfect: the LORD’s Word is flawless.” The prophet Jeremiah described God’s way as the good way that leads to rest for our souls.

Following the words of God will not always be easy. They are in conflict with the value system of the world, which is built on pride, greed, and lust. Not everyone will be pleased when we seek to follow the words of Christ. But we will have the applause of God and His peace as we walk by faith in Him daily.

The direction of God’s Word reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Power of God’s Word

April 5th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Second Timothy 3:14 and 15.

“As for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy, you have known the Holy Scriptures which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.”

The word of God has the power to lead us to faith in Jesus Christ. The Bible gives us the opportunity to open our heart to the Gospel.

This happened to an Ethiopian man in Acts chapter 8. He was reading from the book of Isaiah. At first, he did not understand the meaning, but when Philip used that passage to explain the good news about Jesus, that man put his faith in Jesus and got baptized into the Christian faith.

The power of God’s Word reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Enduring Word of God

April 4th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Isaiah 40, verse 8.

The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.

We can easily get distracted by putting too much priority on temporary things, which are here today and gone tomorrow.  There is more to life than the stuff of this world. There is a heavenly place, where Jesus reigns on the throne. Jesus told us to store up for ourselves treasures in heaven. That is where His Kingdom lasts forever. Worship of His name lasts forever. His love lasts forever. His grace lasts forever.

The final verse of the Bible declares: “the grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.” And so it will be for eternity. That is where God’s Word can be found on the heart of everyone who lives there.

The enduring word of God reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

Focus on God’s Goodness-Joy of Knowing God

April 4th, 2024 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Focus on God’s Goodness is found in Psalm 97:11.

“Light shines on the righteous and joy on the upright in heart.”

The light of God shines on the person who is fully devoted to the Gospel.

There is joy in walking in fellowship with God. There is joy in following Him with a faithful heart. There is joy in embracing His love for us. There is joy is sharing this good news with others. There is joy in pondering a glorious future with Him. There is joy in praising Him for who He is and the many ways He has blessed us.

Psalm 97, verse 12 says, “Rejoice in the LORD, you who are righteous, and praise his holy name.”

The joy of knowing the LORD reveals the goodness of God and is a reason to give thanks in the Year of Gratitude.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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