Full Throttle

Colossians 1:10New Living Translation (NLT)

10 Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better.

I enjoy living life at full throttle. In my faith, driving, and riding motorcycles, I like to go at speeds that can put the hair standing up on your arms. For those of us who ride motorcycles know exactly what I mean with this description.

Living life on the edge is for some, a way of life. I have a good friend who leads the way on our Vital Biker outings. This man lives for full throttle. He makes our events fun and also gives us that sense of exhilaration in our souls.

It is also exciting to live life full throttle in my faith. Living a life to the best of my ability to always honor and please my Lord. My day always starts with getting into the Word, and then seeking the Lord in my day.

My hope in living full throttle is that my life produces fruit, every kind of good fruit. This past Saturday, I experienced that with meeting up with 3 men during my day. First, my dad and I had father, son time over breakfast. I then met with a young man who is a missionary in Brazil and had a time of mentoring. Finally, I had lunch with a single dad who is raising 3 kids, and encouraged him to stay the course.

In all three men and the time that was given, we experienced growing and learning God better. Living full throttle is what Jesus has called me to do. I am called to live in the fast lane to pursue the Lord and make disciples.

Let’s Ride!!

Strength and Courage

Michael

 

Vital Ministries News

Isaiah 43:19New Living Translation (NLT)

19 For I am about to do something new.
    See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
    I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.

Happy New Year! It is the beginning of 2017. What will it hold for our nation? What will it hold for our church? Most important, what will it hold for you? 

All of us at one time or another made or will make a New Year Resolution. Most start off good for the first week, but in 30 days or less, we fall off the wagon.

Today, I am concerned about what 2017 has for us as Vital Men. What is our direction spiritually, both as a group of men and individually. I would like for you to consider one of the following options and make it a commitment between you and the Lord. By doing so, 2017 will be enriched in the Holy Spirit’s direction for our lives.

  1. Read the Bible and commit to reading the One Year Bible.
  2. Read Proverbs. There are 31 chapters. Read one per day.
  3. Read the Vital Men Devotionals each day and offer this to other men to benefit from it.
  4. Journal and write down what the Holy Spirit is whispering to you each day.
  5. Share your faith to someone who does not know Jesus.

Step into one of these options, men. It will help make 2017 a year seeking the Lord for direction and wisdom.

Strength and Courage

Michael

 

“But a Drop”

Romans 1:20 (NKJV) For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse

Sir Isaac Newton was a brilliant man.  His mind was, perhaps, one of the greatest to inhabit a man’s head in all of human history.  A man of science whose contributions paved the way for those to follow, Newton’s works still guide and shape the thinking and understanding of most with in the scientific community yet today.  That is a remarkable statement.  What most people do not know about Newton is that he was a devout man of faith.  In fact, part of his work was devoted to an attempt at proving the existence of God through mathematics.  Surprised?  I was.

Newton was unsuccessful in that endeavor, but that is inconsequential, at least to Newton anyway.  You see he believed.  He knew the truth.  His motives were of an evangelistic nature.  He wanted to prove it to the benefit of those who couldn’t get there on their own.  Newton devoted his life’s work to understanding and developing scientific theory and law.  This life’s work, however, was not to his glory, but always to the glory of God.

In the twilight of his life, Newton was being honored for his illustrious career and contributions to the scientific community, the world really.  He was being honored for his brilliance.  When he got up to speak, his response to these accolades were as humble as I’ve ever heard.  He stated, that despite all his achievements and forward thinking, when he stands upon the seashore and gazes across the vast expanse of water, he understands that no matter how much knowledge he procures here, it is but a drop in that ocean compared to the knowledge and understanding that awaits him in his heavenly home.  

When you find yourself struggling to understand what you are reading in scripture, or are having trouble seeing the big picture and understanding the what and why of God’s plan, it’s alright.  We’re not supposed to.  As long as we draw breath and tread upon this earth, we won’t get it all figured out.  When you find yourself wrestling with that, becoming impatient and frustrated, remember Sir Isaac Newton.  Remember, that even he didn’t figure it out, but understood perfectly that he didn’t need to.  Have a blessed weekend. 

Isaiah 11:2 (NKJV) 

The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him,

The Spirit of wisdom and understanding,

The Spirit of counsel and might,

The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.
 
In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,
Scott Pace

Renew Year

When do you feel most alive?  After a near miss accident?  When home for Christmas or on vacation with your loved ones?  When you take in a small glimpse of the beauty of God’s creation?  When you lose someone you deeply love?  Sometimes it takes a major life event to wake us up to the realities of life.  To make us appreciate what we so often take for granted….life itself.  How about when you fall into the day to day routines of work and life, are there any practices that you do weekly or even daily to renew your spirit?  Things that encourage you or serve as reminders that you are truly alive and living boldly for God?

Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.  Psalm 51:10

Do you stay up late to usher in the New Year at midnight, or go to bed early and hope to sleep in an extra 30 minutes the next morning.  I have attended events where we have brought in the year with prayer and worship with thousands of other Christians, and I have done it with a small group of family and friends, or by myself – Just me and God.  I can’t say one was more meaningful than the others, but just appreciated life and where God had me at the time.  If anything, take a few moments to reflect on what has transpired over the past year and thank God for the little blessings in your life and what opportunities the coming year holds. 

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.  2 Corinthians 4:16

How often do you renew your commitment to God?  When you experience a major life event, or whenever you feel like you messed up somehow?  Maybe every morning that you wake up alive.  Some churches with a liturgical service recite many of the same things each week, even from memory.  Is this good?  It could serve as a memorized reminder of what you believe, or you could fall into a rote routine and just say words without any real knowledge of what they mean to you.  How often do you need to be reminded of what you believe or to renew your pledges?  Can you recite the Apostles Creed or the Nicene Creed from memory?  Do you believe it?  We can be prone to temptation either by routine, or lack of it.  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior.  Titus 3:5-6

So, however you bring in each New Year, or each day in your life, find some practices that help you strengthen your spirit and tune your heart to God.  Speak with Him regularly from your soul and He will direct your steps.  If you don’t already do so, find a small group or someone to meet with regularly so that you may encourage one another in your faith walk.  Celebrate life as each new day arrives and thank the One who gave us this life, one life, to live for Him. 

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.  Romans 12:2

Born again in Christ,
Clark

Death to Religion

I grew up in empty religion.  I am not blaming it on my church or my family, it was probably just me.  I knew how to talk the talk, pretend in the religious behavior, and in the public light act really righteous.  Performance was my middle name… Sunday school, church, Sunday night services, Bible quizzing, mid week service, and the annual revival. Raised hands, memorized verses, sermons listened to (never understood), and worship led often by people who couldn’t sing and sounding like something ancient.  I wanted to be seen as a good Christian boy more than I wanted to live like Jesus.

Like many others, eventually I was done with the show.  I walked away from church.  I saw it as outdated, legalistic, and empty religion.  I was tired of the rules, dressing to be someone I wasn’t, and people who I saw as fake.

Then I heard a message about knowing God like I know a friend.  I did not know this was possible.  I knew the Bible enough to see people in the Bible knowing God like a friend, but I thought they were “special” and I could not know God the way they did.  Then the pastor showed how the people of the bible were just regular people with regular problems.  He said God loved me and wanted to be my friend.  I thought if God was real, He was probably mad at me or had like 7,000,000,000 people on the planet and who was I.  Then He showed me how Jesus intentionally went after the people that were not important in the eyes of society.  He loved tax collectors, lepers, adulterers, women (property in Jesus time), and races religious people wouldn’t talk to.

This night changed my life.  Not all at once, but I began to seek God as my friend believing He wanted to know me and me to know Him.  Over time, I learned to hear His voice, understand what He like, and trust Him with the deepest parts of me.  He became the Person I went to when I was lost, hurting, afraid, needing council, or just wanted to be filled up.  My time with Him is not religion at all, there is no pretending and certainly not earning of any kind.  I have screamed, cried, cussed (not proud of this), laughed, and rested.  I have found true love, hope, joy, freedom, and a friend.  When I miss a day spending time with Him, I do not feel guilty just that I missed out on the best and most important time of my day. 

xuhlr2w5cdu-gary-bendigPsalm 42:As the deer longs for streams of water,
    so I long for you, O God.
I thirst for God, the living God.
    When can I go and stand before him?

Go get alone with Holy Spirit and let Him fill your cup.  Don’t get religious or do it out of duty.  Just go read scripture, journal, listen, worship, cry, laugh, go on a walk, draw… Go do what you like to do with Him and let him fill your cup!

Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus

Brandon Sereg

Every Sunday at 8:30 AM

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