Victory Vitamin Blog – Matthew 4:4

“Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.

-Matthew 4:4 NIV

At this time, Jesus was out in the desert being tempted by the devil.  Jesus did that because He came to live as one of us, and we certainly experience temptation every day.  These words were spoken by Jesus right after the devil tempted Him to turn stones into bread.  Jesus could have done it, but He replies with words that remind us what really matters.  At its core, the devil was trying to get Jesus to satisfy his physical desire.  Jesus was hungry.  As society drifts farther and farther away from God, it becomes more socially acceptable to do things that God has forbidden.  Many of them have to do with our physical desires.  We want to “feel good” so people get high, they get drunk, they “anonymously” and “innocently” peruse pornography on the internet, all in an attempt to satisfy physical desires and “feel better”.  These things, among many others, are harmful, not helpful.  The devil’s lie is that harmful things are really helpful.  Remember, it’s a lie.  Jesus reminds us that we truly live on the Word of God.  The Bible.  The Bible contains truths, not lies.  Truths that give us deep and lasting peace, contentment, and hope.  God loves you.  You are forgiven.  You have purpose.  Eternity in heaven awaits you through Jesus.  True satisfaction is found in those truths, not the devil’s lies.  We’ll never be perfect while we live on earth.  We will sin, and we will be forgiven.  That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t fight.  Jesus’ experience in the desert exhorts us to Join the resistance.  Resist temptation!  God satisfies the soul.

Victory Vitamin Blog – Luke 9:33 NIV

“Master, it is good for us to be here.” 

-Luke 9:33 NIV

 

Most of us have our special place.  A place where we can get away, a place where we would stay, if given the choice.  The apostle Peter found his sweet spot in an unlikely place.  He was up on a mountain with Jesus.  Jesus took Peter, James, and John up there and while they were there, Jesus allowed His divinity to shine through His humanity.  The text says that Jesus literally became as bright as a flash of lightning.  Then, Moses and Elijah appeared from heaven, and talked with Jesus for a bit.  That may not sound super exciting, but the sight was so sublime that Peter wanted to stay.  He said, “It’s good for us to be here.”  He then suggested that He build three shelters for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah so they could just stay and forever enjoy that mountaintop experience.  We can’t fathom the peace and calm that they experienced on that mountain.  It was a glimpse of what heaven will be like!  No wonder Peter said, “It’s good to be here.”  One day we will fully experience that peace and calm in heaven.  In the meantime we have our mountaintop experiences in church.  Again, that may not sound super exciting, but think about it.  We hear God speak through His Word, the Bible.  We see Jesus veiled in bread and wine in the Lord’s Supper.  We’re reminded that He loves us.  Our sins are forgiven.  We enjoy the presence of our brothers and sisters in Christ.  When we get together and worship, It’s a glimpse of heaven! This Sunday, as you sit and wait for the service to begin, think about the glory that will be yours one day in heaven, and then say to yourself, “In the meantime, it’s good to be HERE!”

Victory Vitamin Blog – Jeremiah 1:7

“Ah, Sovereign LORD,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am only a child.”

-Jeremiah 1:7 NIV

Excuses, excuses.  Jeremiah had just been told by God to go to the Israelites and give them a message from Him.  His response?  “Sorry God, I don’t know how to talk.”  God wasn’t having any of it.  As God enabled, Jeremiah went and did what he was told.  We’ve been told to share a message as well.  Having experienced the love and forgiveness of God, we are to let others know about it.  What’s your excuse?  We’ve all got ‘em.  God isn’t interested in our excuses.  There’s too much at stake.  He promises to be with us always (Matthew 28:20), and there are ways to share the hope that you have without making everyone uncomfortable.  What benefits do you receive from your faith in Jesus Christ?  Rehearse your answer to that question and you’ll be surprised how often you can blend it into a conversation.  We’re forgiven for our failures.  That’s the Good News we’ve got to share.  Rather than make excuses, let’s make some results for the God who so graciously forgives our failures.

Victory Vitamin Blog – John 2:7-8

“Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”

-John 2:7-8 NIV

Those servants must have been nervous.  The wedding they were working at ran out of wine. (Embarrassing)  Jesus’ mother gets Him involved and he tells the servants to fill up these huge stone containers with water.  Then He tells them to take some to the guy in charge of the banquet.  Mmm, yummy water!  But they did it.  They did what Jesus said.  That’s faith.  When the guy in charge of the banquet took a sip, he tasted some of the best wine he’d ever had.  Those guys had no reason to trust Jesus.  They didn’t know Him.  This was His first miracle so they hadn’t heard rumors about his abilities.  To the contrary, we know who Jesus is!  We know what He’s done.  Not just His miracles, but His amazing love and devotion to us.  We know He offered His life for ours so that we could be forgiven.  We know that because He died and came back to life, we will do the same.  All this through faith.  Trust in Jesus.  In fact, next time you see, or enjoy a lovely glass of Cabernet, remember that if Jesus can turn water into wine, He can certainly take care of your temporal and eternal needs as well.

Victory Vitamin Blog – Colossians 3:12

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”

– Colossians 3:12 NIV

We’re 10 days into the new year.  Have you broken any resolutions yet?  If you haven’t considered some changes in your life, it’s not too late.  This Sunday we’ll set resolutions aside, and consider a new year’s REVOLUTION!  In Colossians 3, God reveals nine life-changing attitudes and behaviors that will change your life for the better, and have a positive impact on the people around you.  Too often we become stuck in a pattern of behavior and think we’re incapable of changing.  Come on.  ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE WITH GOD!  Start with the attitudes listed above.  Draw them on the back of your hand with a marker, better yet, commit them to memory and live them.  You’ll notice the difference.  Then look up verses 13-17 in your Bible and put the rest into practice too.  We don’t do this out of guilt, or shame, we do this because we are God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved.  God loves you!  He loves you to the point of dying and rising so that your sin would be forgiven, and your eternity in heaven would be certain.  Trust Him to supply you with the power you need to live a new year’s REVOLUTION!