The Holy Spirit is an essential enabler in the work that God has given the Church!

Luke 24:49 And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high."  ESV

For us to engage our world with 'life changing' influence, we must first be 'influenced' by the Holy Spirit! When Jesus was challenging his disciples to Change, He gave them these imperatives!

Be changed yourself, then

Effect Change in others (Influence)!

Many times, His Church isn't His Church! We have 'stolen the identity, co-opted the control, dominated the agenda, and determined the direction that was intended to belong to the Holy Spirit. When we are in charge, He is NOT! When we are navigating, He CANNOT! Do we give Him the credit for our 'decision-making' then blame Him if things don't go as planned? The Holy Spirit never gets it wrong! Perhaps we have not been as 'changed' as we would like to believe.

Acts 1:8  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."  ESV

What do we need?  HOLY SPIRIT POWER!

What will He do? REDIRECT OUR FOCUS!

Ephesians 3:20-21   Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21  to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. ESV

May the Holy Spirit take control of our lives and of the CHURCH!



Where is God?

Many times it seems that God is hiding. A TV talk show commentator recently ridiculed our Vice President for saying that God talked to him.  I have had that experience as well, but many times He is silent.  God does talk to us in many different ways. He speaks through His Word, He speaks through others, and He also speaks to us inwardly. It would be beneficial to all of us to listen intently for His voice!

The Scripture lets us know that He wants to be found, but not as a by-product of our living our lives.  He wants us to let other, unimportant(temporal) things go by the wayside that we might 'find' Him. Jeremiah 29:13   You will seek me and find me. When you seek me with all your heart,  ESV

If finding God is not the most important pursuit of your life, you probably won't discover Him.  A God that isn't worth everything isn't worth anything! God gave His all to find us and expects no less love and determination from us.  He is waiting there just to be found.  How serious is our search for Him?  Have we given up anything? NO! Everything!

He is the greatest treasure we could ever discover and His Love knows no limit! Matthew 13:44  "The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.  ESV





Facing Uncertainty

God is in the uncertainty business! God told Abraham to leave his hometown with all the comfort and security of family. He did NOT tell Abraham where he would end his journey, how he would arrive, or when his journey would be completed!

The fear of the unknown is real! We like to know where we are going, how to get there and how long it will take, before we leave. It would be much easier if we had a 'LIFE' GPS to let us know the destination, the most safe route and the fastest way to get there, but that does not happen.

A friend of mine wrote a song called "Daily Bread" (Joe McCutchen). One stanza of the song says, "Daily Bread, coming down from Heaven every morning, like He said, He gives us what we need to keep us going, but not so much that we don't come back and need Him every day..."

Trust is required, not the knowledge of the trip, its difficulties or any short-cuts. What we need for this 'once-in-a-lifetime' trip is the trust that comes from the knowledge of the One who created us, directs us, ensures our success in His purpose for our lives, and Loves us more than anyone else could ever love us. Only then can we have peace about the uncertainty of the journey.

Have a good Trip!

What should I do when the tests come!

James 1:2-4 ESV   Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

PASS THEM! God does not allow these situations to come into our lives to destroy us, but to build us up! God knows our make-up(He created us), and He knows where we are in our relationship with Him and...1 Corinthians 10:13 ESVNo temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.               God will provide an escape hatch or the wisdom to fight through it to victory!  James 1:5 ESV   If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

God does not send tests our way to show Him our development, but to show US our development.

If we didn't have a test, we are likely to assume that we are better developed than He knows us to be.  So God is saying, 'see how much more you need to trust me!'  Secondly, God keeps us from self-righteousness by allowing, in the test, a revelation of our weaker character traits! God is faithful to prevent us from feeling smug about our relationship with Him. Thirdly, He wants us to develop our spiritual 'muscles' so that we will become everything He knows and created us to be for His Kingdom's sake.



God is

In a topsy-turvy world

1 Corinthians 3:11 For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.   ESV

Our Hearts, our Homes, our Communities, our Nation, our World is being challenged as never before.  We are told that up is down, right is wrong, in is out, black is white. When everything is in transition and there is nothing under us that is solid, it is easier to give in to the tide that is sweeping us off our feet than to hold on to something solid. This is the time that the unchanging Christ can provide the foundation that keeps us from being swept away.

No one else can provide us a safe, sure footing in this life! When we are saving food and money for disaster; Storm shelters, physical, financial and emotional are being prepared, Jesus rises above the fray and shines. God allows the lawless, disruptive influences in our world so we will see our need for the stability that only Christ can give.

Hebrews 12:25-29   See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. 26 At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens." 27 This phrase, "Yet once more," indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, 29 for our God is a consuming fire.     ESV


The Holy Spirit

God has promised us that if we would come to Jesus, we would not be cast aside! The Gospels declare that Jesus Lived, Died and Rose from the dead! The events that give us the promise of salvation. The salvation that Jesus promised is both present and future. 

He wants us to obey and follow him right now, today!  There is a much ignored aspect of our salvation today that is calling us to Christ, that is the fact that if we would be friends with Christ, we must submit to His authority, and surrender our will to His.

It is the work of the Holy Spirit to help us conform to the pattern that Christ provided us by His life here on the earth. We, as His children, are in the process of 'becoming like Him.'  The Bible tells me that we cannot become like Him by our own effort.  We need the Holy Spirit!  We need all He has promised us.  God is not in the business of giving us senseless gifts that have no value. If we are to be successful in 'becoming like Christ,' we must receive this 'God Promised' gift. Thank God for the enabling gift of your Holy Spirit.

But He has also promised us that we will be in the Father's presence with Him when we die or He returns. We look forward to that event that will take us into the presence of the Father never to be separated from Him again!

The Church

While we are a part of a larger Human Organization, It is not Who we are! We are a part of that organization to facilitate our higher calling, namely the building of God's Kingdom.  To that end, we must subject everything we do, not to our brothers and sisters in the human organization, but to the mandate of Jesus Christ in the Scriptures!

God has called us, not to any organization, but to his purpose and plan! While we value the opportunities and relationships in our organization, we realize that they are only a means to an end, and not an end in themselves.

Jesus Christ is clear,

      Matthew 28:19-20 ESV Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.

To accomplish that task, He further stated that we must have more power than our human ability provides.                                                                                                                                          As He instructed His followers,

Luke 24:46-49 ESV and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead,  47 and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.  48You are witnesses of these things.  49 And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high."

To accomplish His Mission, we need to be clothed with the power of the Holy Spirit!  Here at New Vision, we are committing ourselves to the pursuit of God's Supernatural enabling so that we can be successful in fulfilling His calling for each of us individually and New Vision corporately.


The Witness

I want proof! I'm sorry, but I don't want to have to 'take your word for it.'  Opinions are a 'dime a dozen;' Pictures don't prove anything and hearsay isn't good enough. I want to be there personally, see it for myself, Make my own decision. 

In our search for meaning and purpose for existing on this ball of dirt we must search until we find and NOT settle for less.  Some have looked around and, without looking everywhere, have come to the conclusion that life has no overriding purpose and we are the result of some cosmic accident.  Until we look everywhere, we cannot support that opinion as factual.  In our society today, there is an aversion to making an all-out search for God.  Perhaps we are afraid of what others might say, or what we might discover. 

God makes this promise to us...'you will find me when you look for me with ALL your heart.'   I have discovered in my journey that the quality of my discovery has been predicated on the seriousness and intensity of my search!  To be good at anything, we have to pursue our goal with a persistent inquisitiveness. Halfhearted efforts almost always lead to disappointment. Give it all you've got, God wants to be found, but doesn't want to be trivialized by lackluster searching. God promises to give us an internal surety(an personal witness) that He is real; a surety that will last in the face of opposition and ridicule.