Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Ten Years' Strong. Galen's Liver Transplant. You have overcome. You have persevered. You have fought the good fight. Finish your race and keep the faith. 2 Timothy 4:7 I am as proud of you as a father could possibly be. Be the man of God. www.jeffhoracek.com | #2timothy4:7
Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Wedding Ring of the Lamb. He's waiting for you at the altar. He wears this ring for you. Revelation 19:7-9 Be ready! I'm praying for you. www.jeffhoracek.com | #brideofchrist #weddingsupperofthelamb
Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.) Then the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!” And he added, “These are the true words of God.” Revelation 19:7-9 NIV
Sunday, June 3, 2018
Water is the essential component for the existence of life, and the conditions under which it can exist are very narrow and specific. It is highly improbable that we will find the existence of liquid water anywhere else in our universe. Life here on earth is a unique phenomenon brought about by the spoken word of our Creator.
Just as water is required for our physical survival, so too is the spiritual living water that flows from Christ through us. Without His living water flowing within and through us, we would be spiritually wasting away, dying, and ultimately, spiritually dead.
Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:13–14 NIV
On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” John 7:37–38 NIV
If you’re spiritually running dry and desiccating in the desert sand, then you need to come to the ever-flowing river of living water and drink deeply of Him. It is there, with Him, that you yourself will become a living spring of water that flows into others.
For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’ ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’ Revelation 7:17 NIV
Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Monday, May 28, 2018
“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, [the valley of the shadow of death] I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4 NIV
Just as God goes before you in battle to conquer the giants in your promised land, He also is with you to take you through the darkest valleys of turmoil, pain, and despair. Evil lurks everywhere in our fallen world because the fullness of God’s holiness is not manifest because of our sin and rebellion. Yet the Holy Spirit resides in you and His holiness will deter all evil. Evil may tempt you and evil may speak lies to you and evil may try to influence you, but evil cannot control you nor harm you eternally. You have God’s seal of the Holy Spirit within you. No weapon of the enemy will prevail nor can deter your entrance into your promised land. God goes before you. God is with you. And God is inside you. Enter into your promised land of victory. Your land of milk and honey awaits.
“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4 NIV
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Sunday, May 20, 2018
Giants are in the land. Giants are in our minds. And giants are in our hearts. We all have giants to face and overcome in the world around us and from the depths within. The giants are unlikely to totally disappear, but we choose to either address them, ignore them, or relinquish and succumb to them. Fighting the giants is not easy, for the battles and wars may rage daily. In our own strength, victory is unlikely. With God, victory is more likely, and if not total victory, perseverance. Remember, God doesn’t always remove the thorn, but His grace is sufficient to give us all the more strength to carry on and enter into the promised land.
“Then they told him, and said: “We went to the land where you sent us. It truly flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. Nevertheless the people who dwell in the land are strong; the cities are fortified and very large; moreover we saw the descendants of Anak there. Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.” But the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we.” There we saw the giants (the descendants of Anak came from the giants); and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.” Numbers 13:27–28, 30–31, 33 NKJV
“If the Lord delights in us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us, ‘a land which flows with milk and honey.’ Only do not rebel against the Lord, nor fear the people of the land, for they are our bread; their protection has departed from them, and the Lord is with us. Do not fear them.” Numbers 14:8–9 NKJV
The Lord is with you. He is ready to take you into the promised land. Giants are there but do not fear. With God, you will overtake them. Your land flowing with milk and honey is waiting. Go! Go with God!
Wednesday, May 16, 2018
Sunday, May 13, 2018
As difficult as the journey of this life is, rest assured that you are not an afterthought or here by accident. God certainly has a glorious and wonderful plan specifically for you. Sometimes, this plan may be obscured by the trials and tribulations that this life will certainly bring. But know assuredly in your heart that God is working in you and through you to bring about His good and perfect will. You can ask for none other than that. God’s ways are higher than our ways and His ways are perfect.
If you are struggling just to make it through the day, just ask yourself, “Am I making a positive difference and having a positive influence in the lives of others?” If you are, then you are walking down the path that God has prepared for you. Most importantly, remember, God often uses the difficulties in our lives to help those who are similarly struggling. Why me? We never know. But we can be sure that the Potter is molding and shaping us into a most beautiful heavenly ornament. Behind the scenes in the invisible spiritual realm, God is always working for us, and one day truly we will perceive the grand and glorious plan that God worked out in us and through us and for us, and we’ll see all those we’ve helped along the way.
“However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived”—the things God has prepared for those who love him—these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 2:9–10a NIV
“Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him. You come to the help of those who gladly do right, who remember your ways.” Isaiah 64:4–5a NIV
Wednesday, May 9, 2018
Sunday, May 6, 2018
In Greek, the word bema meant an elevated step or platform that orators would speak from or courts of law would be held. This is very similar to our courts where you stand before the judge who’s seated on an elevated platform.
The Bema is the Judgment Seat of Christ, when all believers after being taken up to heaven at the Rapture will stand before Christ to give an account of what they’ve done to further the kingdom of God using all the spiritual gifts, talents, resources, and abilities that Christ through the Holy Spirit has given to them and empowered within them. This has absolutely nothing to do with saving salvation for you are already saved and in heaven and all your sins are fully forgiven at the Cross. This is all about your sanctification and what you’ve done with all that Christ has given to you to use in His service. You are not penalized at the Bema, but you do risk losing additional rewards that Christ has prepared for you if you were a faithful servant doing the Master’s business here on earth.
“For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is [already] laid, which is Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). But if anyone builds upon the Foundation, whether it be with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, The work of each [one] will become [plainly, openly] known (shown for what it is); for the day [of Christ] will disclose and declare it, because it will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test and critically appraise the character and worth of the work each person has done. If the work which any person has built on this Foundation [any product of his efforts whatever] survives [this test], he will get his reward. But if any person's work is burned up [under the test], he will suffer the loss [of it all, losing his reward], though he himself will be saved, but only as [one who has passed] through fire.” 1 Corinthians 3:11–15 AMP
If your good works for Christ and the kingdom are “gold, silver, or precious stones,” they will survive Christ’s test of fire and you will receive additional rewards. If, however, the best that you have done in the Master’s service only equates to “wood, hay, or straw,” then your works will be burned in the test of fire and not be worthy of additional reward. You are still in heaven’s glory, but you will realize all the opportunities that you missed in your willingness to serve the Lord. You have arrived in heaven, in other words, scathed by the test of fire, but you made it by the skin of your teeth. Still a better place to be than the alternative lake of fire!
Jesus makes all this quite clear in the Parable of the Ten Minas (Luke 19:11–26) and the Parable of the Talents (Bags of Gold) as seen below. This parable is quite lengthy, but your success at receiving your reward at the Bema may depend upon reading and understanding it.
“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. “After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The man who had received five bags of gold brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five bags of gold. See, I have gained five more.’ “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ “The man with two bags of gold also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two bags of gold; see, I have gained two more.’ “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ “Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’ “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest. “ ‘So take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags. For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. Matthew 25:14–29 NIV
It’s your choice. Make the best of what God’s given you and take advantage of every opportunity to serve Him and others. What words will you hear at the Bema standing before Christ, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” or “You wicked, lazy servant!”?
Wednesday, May 2, 2018
Sunday, April 29, 2018
In the race of life, you’re not running against the competition, you’re running for your personal best—God’s best for you. It’s not about how much money you end up with or your net worth according to the world’s standards, it’s about your eternal account with God. And God is in the business of people. It’s about finishing the race that God has set before you and finishing that race with your personal best. It’s about running to win your race and bringing as many people with you as you can. It’s not simply about personal achievements and accomplishments, it’s about doing what God has asked you to do and doing it with your best.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,” Hebrews 12:1 NIV
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7 NIV
You must not dwell on the accolades and successes of others. They’re running their own race; and if they’re not running for God, they’re running in vain. Run your race. With blinders on, if necessary, so you are not distracted by the others running too. They are running a different race, even if it’s on the same track. Run your race. Run to win. Run for your personal best. That is what pleases God. And that is what will earn you a crown at the finish line.
“I went in response to a revelation and, meeting privately with those esteemed as leaders, I presented to them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. I wanted to be sure I was not running and had not been running my race in vain.” Galatians 2:2 NIV
“Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.” Philippians 2:14–16 NIV
Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Sunday, April 22, 2018
The Bible speaks of five specific crowns of reward for believers. Which crown or crowns will be yours?
The Imperishable or Incorruptible Crown—For victorious lives of purity.
“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.” 1 Corinthians 9:24–25 NIV
The Crown of Exultation or Rejoicing—For soul winners.
“Therefore, my brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, dear friends!” Philippians 4:1 NIV
“For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy.” 1 Thessalonians 2:19–20 NIV
The Crown of Righteousness—For those who love and long for His return.
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:7–8 NIV
The Crown of Life—For those who persevere and endure/martyrs.
“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” James 1:12 NIV
“Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victorʼs crown.” Revelation 2:10 NIV
The Crown of Glory—For faithful servants.
“To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.” 1 Peter 5:1–4 NIV
Run your race. Run to win. Christ has a crown waiting for you.
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Sunday, April 15, 2018
Christ wore the crown of thorns, so you could wear the laurel crown of victory.
“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” 1 Corinthians 9:24–27 NIV
Before the horror of the crucifixion, Jesus was viciously flogged to near death, beaten, spit on, mocked by putting a purple robe on Him and then tearing it off His torn and bleeding flesh, a crown of thorns mashed onto His head, and beaten with a rod given to Him as a mock scepter. He endured all that for you.
We might think of the crown of victory as a gold, star-pointed crown covered and inlaid with precious jewels. But the true ancient crown of victory from the Greek and Roman eras was the humble crown of the living shoots and branches of the bay or cherry laurel or sometimes the wild olive, twisted into the memorable Olympiad crown of victory that we still see today. This was the crown of honor and victory and achievement and the highest accomplishment. This was a crown that was alive and vibrant and fresh and new. Not anything like the degrading and sorrowful crown of thorns.
Run the race of this life to win. Run to get the prize. Train yourself each day in such a way that you will win. Do not stop and become disqualified and do not rely upon your past successes to sustain you into tomorrow—that’s “resting on your laurels”—and the race your running isn’t over yet. You can do this. You can run your race and win. Christ has your crown wreath of laurel waiting for you at the finish line because He wore the crown of thorns for you.
Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” Revelation 4:4, 10–11 NIV
Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Sunday, April 8, 2018
Is your spiritual GPS working correctly? Do you truly know the path that you are on and where it leads? Are you wandering through life aimlessly, or following in the footsteps of your Master, who has blazed the trail and prepared the way for you?
Matthew 11:28–30 AMP
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. [Jer. 6:16.] For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good–not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.
Jeremiah 6:16a Thus says the Lord: Stand by the roads and look; and ask for the eternal paths, where the good, old way is; then walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.
“Two roads diverged in a wood and I - I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”
Matthew 7:13–14 AMP
Enter through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and spacious and broad is the way that leads away to destruction, and many are those who are entering through it. But the gate is narrow (contracted by pressure) and the way is straitened and compressed that leads away to life, and few are those who find it. [Deut. 30:19; Jer. 21:8.]
John 10:9 AMP
I am the Door; anyone who enters in through Me will be saved (will live). He will come in and he will go out [freely], and will find pasture.
Enter through the Door, the Narrow Gate, the eternal path where the good way is—this is the path that goes through the Cross—this is the path of victory, of true success, of wholeness and wellness, the path of life and rest for your weary soul. Walk in it. Walk this way.
Wednesday, April 4, 2018
Saturday, March 31, 2018
The Last Supper, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday have arrived once again this year. But what does it all mean? What was it all for? And why does it matter to me? Hundreds of years beforehand, the prophet Isaiah foretold of this ominous, yet glorious day for all humanity.
Isaiah 53:2–6 The Amplified Bible
2 For [the Servant of God] grew up before Him like a tender plant, and like a root out of dry ground; He has no form or comeliness [royal, kingly pomp], that we should look at Him, and no beauty that we should desire Him. 3 He was despised and rejected and forsaken by men, a Man of sorrows and pains, and acquainted with grief and sickness; and like One from Whom men hide their faces He was despised, and we did not appreciate His worth or have any esteem for Him. 4 Surely He has borne our griefs (sicknesses, weaknesses, and distresses) and carried our sorrows and pains [of punishment], yet we [ignorantly] considered Him stricken, smitten, and afflicted by God [as if with leprosy]. [Matt. 8:17.]
Matthew 8:16-17 When evening came, they brought to Him many who were under the power of demons, and He drove out the spirits with a word and restored to health all who were sick. And thus He fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah, He Himself took [in order to carry away] our weaknesses and infirmities and bore away our diseases. [Isa. 53:4.]
5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has made to light upon Him the guilt and iniquity of us all. [I Pet. 2:24, 25.]
1 Peter 2:24–25 He personally bore our sins in His [own] body on the tree [as on an altar and offered Himself on it], that we might die (cease to exist) to sin and live to righteousness. By His wounds you have been healed. For you were going astray like [so many] sheep, but now you have come back to the Shepherd and Guardian (the Bishop) of your souls. [Isa. 53:5, 6.]
That’s what Easter is all about—the Passion of Christ—His love for you. His body broken; so that you could be healthy and whole. His blood shed; so your sins forgiven, would now bring you home. Wellness and wholeness await you here, and Paradise with Jesus is your forever home. Gaze upon His Cross and believe.
Thursday, March 29, 2018
Sunday, March 25, 2018
“Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:7b–10 NIV
The Bible is replete with examples of personal perseverance and overcoming adversity against all odds and becoming individuals of power, authority, and greatness by the hand of God. Moses overcame his stammering speech to become a powerful leader of a new nation; Joseph, sold into slavery by his brothers, became a powerful administrative official over all of Egypt; Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego) survived the blazing fiery furnace to bring glory unto their God; and Daniel survived the lion’s den when God closed shut the lion’s mouths. And on the stories go.
Oh! And there was that certain New Testament individual named Paul who overcame just a little to bring forth the Gospel to the Gentile world:
“I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.” 2 Corinthians 11:23d–27 NIV
We all have trials, tribulations, and trauma in our lives to overcome, but take heart and know that it does not escape the watchful eye of God and that He has greater things prepared for you. Persevere. We are ordinary people being prepared for an extraordinary destiny.
“Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.”
2 Corinthians 6:4–10 NIV
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Embrace your trials and tribulations as preparation for the awesome power of God to manifest through you. Persevere. I'm praying for you. 2 Corinthians 12:7b-10; 2 Corinthians 11:23d-27; 2 Corinthians 6:4-10 www.jeffhoracek.com | #paulsthorn #powerperfectinweakness
Sunday, March 18, 2018
“For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’ ” Matthew 13:15 NIV
If your heart has become hardened and calloused by the world and your life’s circumstances, then there is a high probability that you have boxed God and all spiritual awareness and understanding completely out of your life. We are all by nature a stiff-necked and belligerent generation. If left to ourselves, we will certainly be our own undoing.
Jesus tells us in the Scripture above that the key to healing, wholeness, and understanding is to turn. Turn from the wiles and ways of the world, turn from your past and past mistakes, and most importantly, to turn from yourself and turn to God. To truly be well in every way is to embrace the first and greatest commandment: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ ” (Mark 12:30 NIV).
Shift your focus off yourself and the world and instead onto Jesus and your blindness will be cured, your eyes will be opened, and you will spiritually see and perceive even into the invisible. Shift your attention from your past and clearly hear the words of Jesus resonating into the deepest chambers of your being, beckoning you onward. And as you now see and hear clearly, you must embrace the Lord your God with your heart and receive His full understanding.
Turn. And let your healing and well-being begin.
Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Monday, March 12, 2018
“The defining characteristic of pessimists is that they tend to believe bad events will last a long time, will undermine everything they do, and are their own fault. The optimists, who are confronted with the same hard knocks of this world, think about misfortune in the opposite way. They tend to believe defeat is just a temporary setback, that its causes are confined to this one case. The optimists believe defeat is not their fault: Circumstances, bad luck, or other people brought it about. Such people are unfazed by defeat. Confronted by a bad situation, they perceive it as a challenge and try harder.”
“One of the most significant findings in psychology in the past twenty years is that individuals can choose the way they think.”
—Martin E. P. Seligman, Learned Optimism
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8–9 NIV
To a large degree, you can train your mind and patterns of thinking, just as you can train your body with proper diet and exercise. Truly, the battlefield of this world is the war waged and won in your own mind. Whereas being always positive is probably impossible, overcoming negative thoughts is not. Put everything into its proper perspective. Do not dwell on negative thoughts for any length of time, and do not let them overtake you. Take control of them by shifting focus on what’s been learned, how that can be positively applied, the better possibilities that certainly exist, and take steps to move forward to the next better thing.
Philippians 4:8–9 has the formula for us: think about such things, put it into practice, and the God of peace will be with you.
Wednesday, March 7, 2018
See your hope, your riches, your glorious inheritance; and experience Christ's incomparably great power in your life! Just believe. I'm praying for you. www.jeffhoracek.com | #eyesofyourheart #believeinchrist
Sunday, March 4, 2018
The popular praise and worship song, Open the Eyes of My Heart, written by Paul Baloche, is all about seeing, spiritually perceiving, and fully experiencing the holiness of the Lord in all His glory. Though our mind is the true center of our emotions, character, personality, and data bank of experiences, it is our heart and precious blood that keeps us alive and vibrant. Hence, in ancient times and even into today, we equate our heart with the center of life itself and the wellspring of our soul.
To see is to perceive and to understand and fully know. And our life-center must be spiritually connected to our Life-Giver. Ephesians 1:18–19a (NIV) says, “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.”
Open the eyes of your heart that you may be enlightened and fully understand and live in the hope and the incomparable power that Christ has already given you as an inheritance. See. Perceive. Understand and believe. Live in His hope and His power.
Wednesday, February 28, 2018
"For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known."
Sunday, February 25, 2018
“I have a point of view. You have a point of view. God has view.”
—Madeleine L’Engle, A Wrinkle in Time
Another fascinating fact of the eye is its ability to fast focus from very distant objects to very close objects almost seamlessly and instantly. Accommodation is what allows the eye to accomplish this in less than 350 milliseconds. When looking at distant objects, the crystalline lens of the eye, which sits behind the pupil (the iris) is considered to be at rest and in focus. However, when we look at close objects, more magnification power is needed to put them into focus and the crystalline lens responds by changing its shape by means of ligaments attached to a muscle, which increase its curvature and ability to focus at near. As we get older, our accommodation ability decreases (presbyopia) and we begin to need eyeglass lenses to help us focus at these close distances.
Despite our amazing ability to fast focus at so many differing distances, we all have a singular perspective and point of view. So too, it is, with our experiences and journey through this life. We all have our unique perspectives and points of view. With God, however, His view is all-encompassing and complete, seeing everything throughout eternity—past, present, and future—perfectly from every angle and perspective. Nothing escapes His watchful eye and He already knows the end from the very beginning.
Take heart in knowing that He is always watching over you and is just waiting eagerly to pour out bountiful blessings upon you. Here is a comforting psalm, Psalm 121, a psalm of God’s watchful eye and protection covering you:
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you—the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.” Psalm 121:1–8 NIV
Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Sunday, February 18, 2018
“Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.” 1 Corinthians 15:51–53 NIV
“In a flash, in the twinkling of an eye.” The twinkling of an eye is simply an antiquated way of saying a blink or a wink. And fast it is, indeed. The orbicularis muscle surrounding the external eye is responsible for closing the eyelids and the levator muscle of the upper eyelid is responsible for elevating or opening the upper eyelid. Those two muscles (and a few others) working synergistically together are some of the fastest twitch muscles of the human body. In fact, the typical blink lasts only 100–300 milliseconds. That means you could potentially blink almost four times in a second, and that brings a whole new meaning to “batting your eyes”!
We blink primarily to resurface the tear film on the eye, which is critical for not only clarity of vision but also for the health of the ocular surface. On average, we blink about 17 times per minute (once every 3.5 seconds), but that drops to about half that when we are reading or concentrating on a computer screen. That’s why our eyes can get so dry during those particular activities. Blinking is also obviously a protective mechanism. (That’s why your eyes always close when you sneeze!)
When Christ comes to take home all believers at the Rapture, it happens in midair in the blink of an eye. When Christ comes, He brings with Him the souls and spirits of all believers who have died and were in heaven with Him. In midair, the dead bodies of all those believers are instantly resurrected and reunited with their souls and spirits in a new glorified perfect body to live out the days of eternity. Next, those believers who are alive at the time of the Rapture will immediately be caught up in the air with Christ and also be transformed into glorified bodies. Yes! Some of us will never taste death! Then we are all ushered back home to heaven till we come back down to earth with Christ at His Glorious Appearing!
Now that’s a blink I can’t wait for! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!