Saturday, May 3, 2014

True Transformation

Today’s Bible readings are Judges 17:1-18:31, John 3:1-21, Psalm 104:1-23, & Proverbs 14:20-21

John 3:1-4
There was a man named Nicodemus, a Jewish religious leader who was a Pharisee. After dark one evening, he came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi,” he said, “we all know that God has sent you to teach us. Your miraculous signs are evidence that God is with you.”
Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”
“What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?”

What is it exactly that the gospel is intended to do to our lives? What is the purpose of the good news? We start to see the plan of God unfold in this exchange between Jesus & Nicodemus. Jesus begins to explain the purpose of the gospel.

He says: “unless a man is born again”.  This shows us the intent of the gospel. It is to bring TRANSFORMATION into our lives. The gospel is meant to change everything about our lives & cause us to become new creatures.

Many people hear the gospel, & even respond to the gospel, but never experience true transformation. This is not the way that it is supposed to work. I want to make one point very clear; IT IS NOT THE GOSPELS FAULT!!!

The gospel still carries the same power that it did when Jesus preached it when He walked the earth. The problem is that many don’t let that gospel into their lives the way that it is meant to work. We want the good news that will make us feel better. We want the good news that we like. But we tend to blow off the rest of the message that can really lead to changed hearts & changed lives.

The gospel is an entire message. It teaches us to love, live, & forgive. It also teaches us to walk in victory, power, & truth. It teaches us to say no to ungodliness, evil, & wickedness. It teaches us of grace, mercy, & faith. When we take these things in their entirety we experience transformation.

Transformation occurs in our families, our relationships, our finances, our emotions, our minds, our attitudes, our bodies, etc… It begins to affect every area of how we live. This is the TRUE intent of the gospel. It is meant to transform us into new creatures!!!

How does this occur? It starts by taking in the Word. The Word is a seed that will produce God’s plans in us.

Isaiah 55:10-11

10 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,
11 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’s Word puts in us the things that are needed in order for us to experience transformation. As we receive His Word it gives life & truth to us so we can see the way life is supposed to be in Christ. This leads to us living that life by faith. This is transformation.

If there is an area of your life that has not experienced transformation, open up your heart to the Word of God. Begin t search the scripture to see what it says about your situation. As your get the GOOD NEWS about that area, let it transform you in to the new creature that you truly are. Le the gospel affect every area of your life in Jesus Name!

Pastor Richard Schlotter

Friday, May 2, 2014

My Sins Are Gone

Today’s Bible readings are Judges 15:1-16:31, John 2:1-25, Psalm 103:1-22, & Proverbs 14:17-19

Psalm 103:11-12
11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. 12 He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.

How many times have you stood feeling condemned? How many times has something from your past come up to accuse you? How many times have you beat yourself up over a mistake that you made? How many times have you thought that something in your past is unforgivable? How many times has the thought came that God could never forgive you for something that you have done?

These are the kind of thoughts that plague so many in the body of Christ. We all are way too familiar with our past failures & sins. The memory of past failures & sins keep us stuck. They even keep us sinning.

I want to clarify that last statement. Some people may wonder how that is possible. When we continue to carry the past sins & failures around with us in our minds, it kills our right standing with God. As long as we see ourselves as failing sinners, we don’t think we have the right to go to God for help. This kills our confidence. So we live in a defeated state of mind. This leads to us being weak & defeated in life, which is where sin gets it power. All this leads to a cycle of us failing & sinning continually.

The Good News is this: 

 1.      God’s love is greater than any of our failures.

2.      God has removed our sins from us.


This is so awesome when we get a revelation of it. God has truly removed our sins from us. When He looks at us He doesn’t see our past failures & sins. He sees us clothed in the righteousness of His Son Jesus, in whom He is entirely pleased!  There is no hint or trace of our past in God’s mind. He has cast it into the sea of forgetfulness. He remembers it no more. Our problem is not that God remembers our past, it is that we do.

Satan is a master at bringing up the past. He does it in such a way that we don’t even realize it is him. As he sets those thoughts of the past up in our mind, we have to make sure to cast them down. We MUST confess that we are removed from our sins & sin is removed from us. It is like my pastor, George Edgerly, use to say, “When satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future.”

There is this old song that we use to sing in church when I was younger that speaks about this topic very well.

When Satan comes to tempt me and tries to make me doubt,
I say, "My sins are gone;
You got me into trouble but Jesus got me out,
I'm glad my sins are gone."
They're underneath the blood on the cross of Calvary,
As far removed as darkness is from dawn;
In the sea of God's forgetfulness, that's good enough for me,
Praise God, my sins are gone.

God wants you to know that you are released from your past. You are released from sin. Now go & be the new creature He has saved you to be. You no longer have to believe the accusations that come about your past. God says:  “Your sins are gone!”

Pastor Richard Schlotter

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Instruct Us To Raise Our Children

Today’s Bible readings are Judges 13:1-14:20, John 1:29-51, Psalm 102:1-28, & Proverbs 14:15-16

Judges 13:8-12
Then Manoah prayed to the Lord, saying, “Lord, please let the man of God come back to us again and give us more instructions about this son who is to be born.”
God answered Manoah’s prayer, and the angel of God appeared once again to his wife as she was sitting in the field. But her husband, Manoah, was not with her. 10 So she quickly ran and told her husband, “The man who appeared to me the other day is here again!”
11 Manoah ran back with his wife and asked, “Are you the man who spoke to my wife the other day?”
“Yes,” he replied, “I am.”
12 So Manoah asked him, “When your words come true, what kind of rules should govern the boy’s life and work?”

Parenting is not an easy thing to do. Most parents have no clue when we first get started. We have a bunch of different people trying to tell us what we should & shouldn’t do. Yet, we soon find out that our child may be different than other kids. They may respond different to the way we are trying to instruct them. It can leave a person scratching their head wondering if they will ever get it right.

I have 6 children. Each one of them is different. We have noticed that certain forms of instruction work well with certain kids but not with others. It can be very frustrating at times. There have been moments when we have thought we were never going to figure out how to teach certain things that needed to be taught. There have been other times when we didn’t even know exactly what we were supposed to be teaching to help our kids in the areas that they were struggling with.

I find courage in the father of Samson. He was a man much like me. Manoah didn’t have a clue about being a dad. He wanted to raise his son well. He wanted to make sure that his son fulfilled the call that was on his life. Yet, he didn’t know what to do to ensure that this would happen.

I have been there. I know that God has a plan & a purpose for each of our children. I can see that call on them. Yet, there are days when I don’t know what I need to do to help them notice & respond to that call. It has left me feeling confused & discouraged many times.

As parents, we can spend a lot of time stuck in these moments of life. There is a solution. It is the path that Manoah shows us. He cried out to God to instruct him how to raise his son. He didn’t know what kind of rules to implement. He didn’t know what values to stress the most. He had no experience. He was new at this. Yet, he knew that God was the greatest Father ever & He was there to help.

Manoah cried out to the Lord for help. In a matter of time, the Lord came & spoke to him. The Lord gave him instructions on how to raise Samson. They were very specific instructions that were for Samson alone. Those instructions helped Samson understand his anointing & call. It opened up a door for the Lord to begin to stir him.

This is always the best thing that we can do as parents. If we can turn our ear to the Holy Spirit & wait for Him to instruct us we will succeed as parents. He will speak to us about those things that baffle us. He will show us how to call out the gifts that are in our children. He will teach us what is the best way to raise each individual child that has been entrusted to our care. As we follow His instructions, we will put our children in a much greater opportunity to hear from God for themselves & accept His call. This is the goal & hope of every born again parent.

I know it seems like we always come back to this same point, but that is because it matters so much; THE ANSWER WAITS IN PRAYER.

1.      It is through prayer that we get the words that we need to better equip us.

2.      It is through prayer that we get answers.

3.      It is through prayer that we bear our heart to God.

4.      It is through prayer that God bears His heart to us.

Never forget that even in the everyday things of life, parenting for instance, the Holy Spirit wants to lead. We give Him permission to do so as we ask for His help. This all starts with us going to the place of prayer.

Make sure to check in with God when you don’t know what to do. He always knows what is best. He is always ready to teach us if we will just ask.

Pastor Richard Schlotter

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Unleash Your New Nature

Today’s Bible readings are Judges 11:1-12:15, John 1:1-28, Psalm 101:1-8, & Proverbs 14:13-14

John 1:10-13
10 He came into the very world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him. 11 He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. 12 But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. 13 They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.

Have you ever felt weak? Have you ever felt powerless? Have you ever had a time when you didn’t think that you could do what needed to be done? Those are feelings that we all wrestle with. These thoughts come from the enemy of our soul. His purpose is to convince us that there is nothing we can do in those situations. If he can get us to agree with him then he can keep us in a defeated state.

Well I have some good news for you. You are born of God! That is center of what it is to be a Christian. You are no longer what you use to be. You have God’s seed living in you. His seed will produce His life in you. His seed has placed His power in you. His seed has placed His ability in you. His seed has placed His nature in you.

We talk a lot about the idea that God is our Father, but I think that few people ever really stop to consider what that means. If God is our Father then His DNA is in us. It makes us like Him. Check out this verse:

1 John 3:9 (AMP)

No one born (begotten) of God [deliberately, knowingly, and habitually] practices sin, for God’s nature abides in him [His principle of life, the divine sperm, remains permanently within him]; and he cannot practice sinning because he is born (begotten) of God.

Have you ever thought about that? You are TRULY a new creature. Your old nature is gone & your new GOD-LIKE nature has come. God’s seed is in you.

God’s seed causes you to have:

1.      Overcoming power

2.      Unending joy

3.      Unceasing victory

4.      Peace that passes all understanding

5.      Victory over sickness

6.      Strength over sin

7.      Wisdom for living

The enemy constantly uses the circumstances that surround our lives to beat us down to a place where we doubt in the seed of God that is in us. It is that seed that that causes us to rise above satan & his attacks. If we doubt in the reality of that seed, we cut ourselves off from the life giving power that flows from it. We need that power to maintain victory & walk in freedom.

One of the best ways for a person to come alive to this truth is to begin to speak God’s Word concerning this matter over your life. Here are a few verses that I want each of you to confess daily over your life. You MUST speak these out loud as an open confession throughout the day when thoughts of defeat come. This will help renew your mind to the TRUTH of who you have become in Christ.

1.      Christ’s power is at work in me. (Eph. 3:20)

2.      I am born of God & guard myself from sin so the wicked one can’t touch me. (1 John 5:18)

3.      The greater One lives in me. (1 John 4:4)

4.      I am being changed into Christ-likeness. (2 Cor. 3:18)

5.      I am a branch of the Vine of Christ. (John 15:4-5)

6.      I am God’s child. (Gal. 3:26)

7.      I am a new creation. (2 Cor. 5:17)

These verses will help strength your faith to the awesome reality of who you are as a believer. That truth will change the way you live. As you come to see that you are more than a conqueror, you will live your life out of faith in that truth. That truth will produce a conquering life-style for you.

It is time for you to discover what is living in you. You have a new nature just waiting to be unleashed. Open up your heart to this truth & enter into the supernatural realm of your new life in Christ!

Pastor Richard Schlotter