When Daddy Comin?

For the past two weeks, I have been home with my family celebrating our new arrival! Since there is only so much I can do for our new baby, most of my time was spent playing with and taking Read more

Angel Tree

When I was a child, my family fully embraced the traditions of Christmas. We decorated our home with the most cherished ornaments, lights, and bows. We handmade or purchased gifts with much thought about the receiver. We made plans Read more

Begin with Jesus

The autobiography of G. Stanley Jones is titled A Song of Ascent, and it’s considered to be a spiritual classic. Jones was a great man: a missionary to India, a friend to Gandhi, a tireless world traveler, and a Read more

Weeds

Have you ever been responsible for a task you didn’t particularly enjoy? Perhaps you can relate to one homemaker who developed a unique perspective on some of her less enjoyable household duties. She said: I don't do windows because I Read more

New Each Day

Patrick Henry, whose primary contribution to the history books is the phrase "Give me liberty or give me death," made another memorable statement. He said, "I know of no way of judging the future but by the past." Repeat this before Read more

Does Keenan Know God Loves Him Like Crazy?

Posted on by Mike Fortune in Articles | Leave a comment

Keenan Cahill is far from your average high-schooler. For one thing, he has overcome incredible adversity, suffering from a rare genetic disorder called Mucopolysaccaridosis (MPS-6) since birth. For another, at the young age of 15, Cahill has already achieved international superstardom from behind a webcam in his childhood bedroom no less by lip-syncing todays top 40 hits. It was his cover of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” that first threw Cahill into the spotlight earning 36 million views on YouTube and a legion of adoring fans including Katy Perry herself.
But it was Keenan’s honesty about his condition that inspired a Chicago news team to ham it up in his bedroom helping him remind others that talent, no matter how much adversity its presented, can overcome all obstacles. I don’t know if Keenan knows God loves him like crazy, but I’m sure He does!!! And I think God thinks it’s pretty cool how one sick kid could inspire 36 million people without leaving his bedroom!!! WTG Keenan!!!


Move

Posted on by Graceroots Movement in Video | Leave a comment

God is a God of action. Where is God calling you to move? Go out today and VOTE!

MOVE from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

Saving Grace

Posted on by GODencounters in Articles | Leave a comment

Have you ever felt like you had limited resources and support, working on your own on a lonely uphill battle?

In my personal devotional time, I was reminded of an aspect of God’s grace that gave me just that little bit more encouragement to continue pressing forward. It comes from an unlikely place: Judges chapters 6 & 7

It was a time of great disparity among God’s people. Many professed to be followers of the truth, but few did more than just go through the motions of the lifestyle of a believer. The people had placed their priorities on many other things than God and the furthering of His ‘church.’ They had compromised and placed their money, energy, support, and time in religious ventures that did little to grow the kingdom.

As a last-resort way to help His people realize just how far they had gone from their mission, God withdrew some of His shielding power from them. All of a sudden, they were faced with the reality of the world they were living in, and times were hard.

Every day they lost countless new ‘harvests’ to the surrounding world. Everyday, it became increasingly harder to survive as a people of God.

Then one young adult, nicknamed Jerub-baal (or JB for short), decided to take a stand after an incredible GODencounter. He immediately set out to return the priority of spirituality to the one true God and His mission for his people. He took a stand and went against the focus of the religious ‘church body’ he was a member of. He destroyed the fruitless tradition of his family’s religion and acted on the challenge he received from his encounter with God.

Soon JB felt the call to undertake something so monumental, his ‘church’ organization had no clue how to even begin to fight against. God had called him to attack and defeat the enemy that had been stealing so much of the life force of his people. JB laid grand military plans, and talked to thousands of people to gain support.

However, out of the hundreds of thousands of people in his ‘church,’ only 32,000 actually volunteered to fight against the combined forces of the more than three nations gathered to war. Most were not even fully committed. JB was alone, working uphill, with next to no resources. But he continued on.

The day finally came when JB set out to meet his ‘church’s’ opponents. And here is where I saw the lesson of God’s grace anew. That morning, as JB set out with his 32,000 volunteers (a fraction of what would have been needed for the task ahead), God stopped him and reduced his resources even further! At first I was taken back by what He did. Why would God seemingly make it impossible to succeed? Then it all made sense as God explained:

“You have too many warriors with you. If I let all of you fight the Midianites, the Israelites will boast to me that they saved themselves by their own strength. Therefore, tell the people, ‘Whoever is timid or afraid may leave this mountain and go home.’” (verse 2-3 NLT)

You see at this moment in time, God wanted to show His saving grace. And it’s a bit hard to save someone, when they’re busy trying to save themselves. God wanted JB to fight with limited resources, not because he wanted to make his life miserable, but because He wanted to show saving grace to His ‘church.’

Eventually, JB was left with 300 volunteers: less than 1% of his original fractional team. And God showed up in a big way! In fact, victory for JB (aka Gideon) was as easy as breaking pottery!

God has many kinds of grace: sustaining grace, keeping grace, providing grace, forgiving grace. But the greatest grace of all is his saving grace. God wants to save us, and He wants to save His church as well. In a story of oppression, insurmountable odds, war, and victory, I found a God willing to do whatever it takes to save His own. Sometimes, accomplishing that goal means diminishing ours to make us ever reliant on Him. Do you find yourself alone, underfunded, unsupported, facing an insurmountable ministry goal?

“God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it” (Eph 2:8-9 NLT, emphasis added).

In this same way, and in the same way He worked for the Israelites through JB, God wants salvation for all his family. Take courage! Stay true to your calling! God’s saving grace is already in play.

Previously serving as a worship leader and youth pastor in the South Pacific and North American Divisions, Kasper Haughton, Jr. is currently a Masters of Divinity graduate student at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, Andrews University. You can follow his blog atkasperjr.wordpress.com