Archive for June, 2009

God Is Working In You

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test? But I trust that you will realize that we ourselves do not fail the test. 2 Corinthians 13:5-6

As we inspect and evaluate ourselves, we have to understand that Jesus is on the inside of us. “So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Philippians 2:12-13). The peril of introspection is to stop short at the “work out your salvation” part and miss the conclusion that God is working in you. The power of Jesus in us is not to be underestimated.

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21 NKJV

God is at work in you. That is how you got to this point. That is how you endured. As long as you seek God and put Him before you, you will be at an amazing advantage. Through vicious temptations and harsh trials, we have to do everything we can to press in, seeing that none of us falls short of what God has for our lives. Take hold of this “exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think” power that is available to us through Jesus.

Don’t cave in! Other people need what you have. Of course the enemy is going to bombard you, because there are good works that God has prepared you to walk in—mountain-moving, nation-changing, world-reaching, soul-saving, and Jesus-uplifting good works! “Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass” (1 Thessalonians 5:24).

Press on!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2009 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

The Value of Godly Wisdom

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

Happy is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding; for her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, and her gain than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies, and all the things you may desire cannot compare with her. Length of days is in her right hand, in her left hand riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her, and happy are all who retain her. Proverbs 3:13-18 NKJV

If you want to give your life to the pursuit of anything, give yourself to the pursuit of wisdom. Whatever your education level or cultural background, Jesus wants to give wisdom to every man, woman, and child. “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5). The Creator, the very Essence of what life is about, is inviting you to ask Him for wisdom.

[I pray] that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. Ephesians 1:17-19a

King Solomon understood that he needed a spirit of wisdom to fulfill what God had called him to do—lead the people of Israel. “Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people, for who can rule this great people of Yours?” (2 Chronicles 1:10). Because Solomon asked for wisdom instead of riches, God granted him wisdom and gave him long life and riches besides.

Wisdom is the ability to see how situations relate to the present, how to handle those situations, and how present situations will affect the future. Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God (1 Corinthians 1:30), is asking us to follow His voice instead of the voices and language of the day. When we reverentially consider what God’s heart is toward something, it will help us with everything—our job decisions, our finances, and our relationships. No success principle is better than the wisdom of God. He has the answers to questions you haven’t even formulated yet. So get in the Word and ask God for wisdom. He’ll give it to you.

Pursue Wisdom,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2009 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

JUMP 2009: Get Ready!

Monday, June 15th, 2009

“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

This past week nearly 2,500 kids poured onto the St. Louis Family Church campus for our 2009 summer day camp. The reason we do JUMP is so kids can know that God loves them and has an amazing plan for their lives.

Over 700 volunteers got here early to direct traffic, check in kids, lead groups, cut up watermelon, act in the drama, sing on the worship team, bandage elbows, and pick up trash—this is church at its finest. If we did all of JUMP to change just one kid’s life, it would be worth it!

This year the kids learned about getting ready for their future. God is calling us all, young and old, to prepare for amazing exploits ahead. Whether you are eight or ninety-eight, it’s not too early or late to adjust your heart and follow God.

Jesus is the answer for the nations—He is the hope of the world. If you haven’t talked to God in a while, take a moment to get quiet and ask Him what he wants you to do with your time on this earth. If you feel burdened with the weights of life, crack open your Bible and find wisdom for your situation. God is ready and able to help you with every area in life (2 Corinthians 9:8; Psalm 46:1). Trust Him and get ready for good things ahead!

God bless you!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2009 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

Effective in Our Moment

Monday, June 8th, 2009

We give thanks to God always for all of you, making mention of you in our prayers; constantly bearing in mind your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the presence of our God and Father, knowing, brethren beloved by God, His choice of you; for our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit . . . 1 Thessalonians 1:2-5a

This Thessalonica church impacted their world and became an example to all believers because of three things: their work of faith, their labor of love, and their steadfastness of hope. These people became imitators of Jesus and because of it the gospel went out in their city, in their region, and throughout their world.

For the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you, not only in Macedonia
and Achaia, but also in every place your faith toward God has gone forth,
so that we have no need to say anything. 1 Thessalonians 1:8

The Thessalonians had their time, but now this is our time. We’ve received the gospel message not in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 1:5a). God has called us to take our moment we’ve been given and express the love of Christ.

What I like about the Bible is it shows reluctant people, flawed people, and people with issues who were lost, but God shone His light on them and the gospel went into their lives—not just in theory, but also in power. We are not left powerless either. When Jesus ascended into heaven we received the amazing advantage of the Holy Spirit to equip us for effectiveness (John 16:7).

“The people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits” (Daniel 11:32b NKJV). God has called us in our daily life to have a heart and expectation for amazing exploits but with a willingness to serve in the daily grind in faithfulness, steadfastness, and obedience strengthened by the amazing Holy Spirit. Plug in. Stay connected. Pray. As you do that, you will be effective in spreading the good news of Jesus in this time!

Press on!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2009 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

The Race of Endurance

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. Hebrews 12:1

God has called us out of darkness and into this wonderful life (1 Peter 2:9). The Christian life is one of victory and supernatural strength. God wants us to succeed and to win the race He’s set before us. “Run in such a way that you may win” (1 Corinthians 9:24b).

You came to see a race today. To see someone win . . . But how long does that last? You go home. Maybe your dinner’s burnt. Maybe you haven’t got a job. So who am I to say, “Believe, have faith,” in the face of life’s realities? . . . I have no formula for winning the race. Everyone runs in her own way, or his own way. And where does the power come from, to see the race to its end? From within. Jesus said, “Behold, the Kingdom of God is within you. If with all your hearts, you truly seek Me, you shall ever surely find Me.” If you commit yourself to the love of Christ, then that is how you run a straight race. –Eric Liddell, “Chariots of Fire”

We serve a God Who fed Elijah during times of famine; Who first gave the power of the Holy Spirit to the early church, and those people revolutionized the world. “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). We can glory in tribulation because we have the answer that “in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us” (Romans 8:37).

Your life is not over. The future is more flexible than some have tried to tell you. Get out of a fatalistic attitude and call out to God. Remember God’s faithfulness and speak out what the Word says about your life. The God who rescued people in the Bible is the same God who wants to help you in your situation today.

Finish the Race!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2009 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.