Blessed 2020

17 thoughts on “Blessed 2020

  1. “…And you will be given a new name by the LORD’s own mouth.”
    Isaiah 62:2 NLT

    So often Satan has given us a name that may have boxed us into a negative way of life. Negative names like unwanted, liar, cheater, bad, poor, ugly, fat, dumb and many others. Some of these names may have stayed with us since a young child.

    Yet, Jesus through His Mercy at Calvary and Grace at our new life through the confession and repentance of those negative names heard Jesus’ whisper when He called us by our new name.

    This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. “The old life is gone; a new life has begun.”
    2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT

    When we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, we are made new–no longer identifying with the person we were, but transforming into the likeness of Christ. Just glorious news. If you haven’t heard your healing name ever or maybe you did and ‘the old’ circles the mind, listen, respond and made 2020 a year of new and exciting beginnings.

    Blessed 2020!

    1. “When we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, we are made new-no longer identifying with the person we were, but transforming into the likeness of Christ.” For me, it is encouraging to see the word, “transforming“, I think 🤔; that is, if I understand transforming is “ongoing, not complete, work in progress, etc. ?”

      1. 2 Corinthians 3: …17) Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18) And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into His image with intensifying glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” Berean Study Bible
        Transforming….
        Tammy, my understanding, which I’m sure is only a tiny portion of such a life giving truth, has been when we become a child of God through the blood sacrifice of His Son, Jesus, by faith we are transformed into a new creation. We have a new nature and new name. We could look at this though nature…if we become a fig tree we will produce figs. Never pecans. We will grow into a large, healthier, more productive fruit bearing tree. Others can judge us by our fruit.

        Then we have fig tree parables or stories where Jesus has issues with fig trees not producing fruit.

        Transformation takes place often from a farmer/agricultural seasons of events. Never an issue with transformation when we settle who the Vine is and ‘the whose” of the branches. Without the vine, no fruit could ever result. Branches are utterly dependent upon the vine.

        Yes, we go from glory to glory because the vine and we should always show our brand.

        Blessings to all branches in 2020!

      2. Fruit the children of God should all have: “…the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (See Galatians 5:22-23.)

        We are often asked by leaders to evaluate or judge ourselves by asking ourselves, “How has the fruit of the Spirit led you to action?”

  2. Sara, what a wonderful and encouraging teaching you shared with us above! Just to know that we don’t have to stay “boxed…into a negative way of life.” is good news indeed!

    Your words above prompted me to go on a search to find some people whose names had been changed by God in the Bible. I found that:
    Jesus called Simon (one of his 12 disciples) blessed when he answered correctly about who He was. Jesus then gave him his new name, Cephas (which means Peter); and Peter means rock). Matt 16:17-18; John 1:42

    Jesus named James and John, “Sons of Thunder”. Mark 3:17

    Jesus called Nathanael a “true son of Israel” and “an honest man”. John 1:47

    Jesus referred to the women with an issue of blood that touched the hem of his garment in faith to be healed, “Daughter”. Luke 8:48

    Zaccheus, known to the people as a ‘notorious sinner’ and a tax collector, was referred to by Jesus as “a true son of Abraham” because he responded to Jesus request to open his home to Him, and repented of his sins before Him. John 19:9

    Jesus changed Saul’s name (meaning asked for, prayed for) to Paul (meaning small or humble) after Acts 13:9

    God changed Jacob’s name (the deceiver or supplanter) to Israel, which means ‘having power with God’ after he wrestled with the Angel. Genesis 32:28

    Also, your teaching reminded me of an allegorical book I read by Esther Walker, titled, ‘High Pasture” that you gave me a short while ago. In the story there is a lost little lamb, initially referred to by the Shepherd as ‘little creature’. However, when this lamb got in bad trouble and needed rescuing, and then made a feeble call followed by a grateful response to the Shepherd who rescued him, the Shepherd changed his name to “Precious.” Another lamb in the story, Hungry’, who was owned by a hireling was also rescued by the Good Shepherd. She appreciatively and lovingly followed Him closely after that and was renamed, ‘Satisfied’.

    1. Debi, your research of God’s mercies poured out upon the needy gives hope to all. Think of how it would be for others or ourselves to be referred to as just a little creature. A no body. Ouch! So, our behavior mimics a little creature. Then we secretly call or bleep and the Great Good Shepherd responds with my precious child I’m here to enlighten you to your worth.

  3. While holding my grandfather’s Bible this morning, I read all his read lined passages. The Bible was not read by him for most of life. His name would have been Town Drunk. My grandmother went to church faithfully.

    His children knew him as a drunk and mean as they worked the cotton fields and the money was drunk up by their dad.

    One day it seemed to be like just any other day. Rise, drink, and fall. But one day he rose, drank and then God….. intervened and changed his name. Deuteronomy 14: 1 “Ye are children of the Lord your God….”2. For thou art an holy people unto the Lord…” many places in his Bible he had red lined “repent” one such scripture was Acts 3: 19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord” Afterward his encounter with God, he studied Billy Graham’s studies and became a caretaker at his church. We called him “Grandpa”.

    1. Rena, A grand story of “Grandpa”! A living story of name truth. When Jesus calls your name its the sweetest whisper ever to be heard. And, then we respond like Grandpa. Makes me think of this song, chorus
      “But the angel called Him Jesus, born of a virgin.
      Mary called Him Jesus, but I call Him Lord.
      But the angel called Him Jesus, born of a virgin.
      Mary called Him Jesus, but I call Him Lord.
      But the angel called Him Jesus, born of a virgin.
      Mary called Him Jesus, but I call Him Lord.
      Jehovah, Messiah is lord”

      The first verse….
      “ Master, Redeemer, Savior of the world.
      Wonderful, Counselor, Bright Morning Star.
      Lily of the valley, Provider, and Friend,
      He was yesterday, He’ll be tomorrow, Beginning and End.”

      What do you call Him? I call Him Lord! ❤️

      1. Thanks for sharing your story about “Grandpa”. Looks like he not only got a name change but God gave him a job so he could serve Him. Really great!

    1. “There is something Jesus said that I want you to think about. Jesus said to those who followed Him: “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35).”

      Thank you for asking us to think about this, Sara, and for sharing Dr. Graham’s sermon. Your words above and his words delivered long ago, “This might cut some of us to the heart. It is going to probe down deep, because one thing that the church of Christ in America lacks is the demonstration of love, and Jesus said, “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35)”, intersect to penetrate the heart like an x-ray beam.

      The need to think about this important fruit is further reinforced by Dr. Graham’s words: “The greatest demonstration of the fact that we are Christians is that we love one another” and “God is love”.

      Both his word, ‘demonstration’, and your word, ‘action’, speak to me as a requirement ‘to do’. Not think about it, wish it, talk about it, but do. We are told in his sermon, “God looks after you, and you are to look after others, the Bible says.” That sure speaks action.

      And yet, the probe goes deeper when Dr. Graham’s sermon says, “…but if the motive were not divine love, it means nothing in the sight of almighty God.”

      You ask, Sara, “How has the fruit of the Spirit led you to action?”
      Dr. Graham said, “We have it (‘love’) demonstrated in 1 Corinthians 13.” To help us determine if we have put love in action.
      And we had some excellent advice on ‘kindness’ in the Sept 4, 2019 blog “Be Kind” https://thedailylily.com/2019/09/04/be-kind/#comments; and the June 9, 2019 blog “What are good works” https://thedailylily.com/2019/06/09/what-are-good-works/#comments to give is a ruler to measure our do’s and fruit by.

      And Pastor Reggie’s diligence in preparing and completing all the lessons in the study of Judges and Amos on the Lily, along with June’s timely shares of the lessons, and Sara’s unswerving follow-through in posting them all sure exhibits the fruit of ‘faithfulness’.

      1. Debi, your post begins with love and ends with faithfulness. It gives me recall to my first understanding of the fruit of the spirit from Galatians 5 which we have shared here…the 9 characteristics of the fruit is like naming 9 nutrients in an apple. It’s all in the apple! The benefits for us is when we eat the apple and gain the nutrients. Our human body becomes healthier and our health makes His Body healthier. But, we must remember Jesus is the Head of the Body of Christ.
        I was thinking this am how the world loves singing New Years Eve,
        Verse 1)
        “Should old acquaintance be forgot,
        and never brought to mind?
        Should old acquaintance be forgot,
        and old lang syne?
        (Chorus)
        For auld lang syne, my dear,
        for auld lang syne,
        we’ll take a cup of kindness yet,
        for auld lang syne.“

        Are we guilty of not bringing to mind our relationship with Jesus and enjoying Him and the mysteries He alone brings to His friends.

    2. Dr. Billy Graham sure spoke truth, and one the church (followers of Christ) does; indeed, need to think about and put into action. Heavenly Father, help us to obey Your Word . 🙏

  4. We as believers pause in our calendar of events, Advent to Epiphany, to take deep breathing spiritual breaths so we can marvel at another mystical part of our new creation/name. I just love this time of year as it calls our memory to a refresher course of our marvelous gift of eternal light to shine for the world to be enlightened.

    ”IN BAPTISM WE become part of the body of Christ. We are incorporated into this process of discipleship that moves throughout history and around the world. Our baptism took place in a specific place, from which we may have long ago moved; yet, our baptism is into the body of Christ, a mystical event that transcends our place and our time.”—George H. Donigian, In Days to Come: From Advent to Epiphany

  5. Thank you God for bringing Billy Graham’s sermon to Sara’s attention. With so much happening here and abroad we certainly need to hear from God – “LOVE”.
    Of course, He speaks of a Devine Love!

    What is Devine love?
    Billy Graham says, “The Bible says that you know nothing about this love if you are outside of Christ. It is impossible for you to have this divine love, because it is a gift of God only to those who love Christ. At the moment you receive Christ into your heart. God will give you this supernatural love until you love the whole world.

    We who say we love Jesus, receive God’s love continually filling up our heart, to be poured out to others in love.

    This reminded me of a song – Pass It On
    Verse 1
    It only takes a spark
    To get a fire going
    And soon all those around
    Can warm up in its glowing
    That’s how it is with God’s love
    Once you’ve experienced it
    You spread His love to ev’ryone
    You want to pass it on
    Verse 2
    What a wondrous time is spring
    When all the trees are budding
    The birds begin to sing
    The flowers start their blooming
    That’s how it is with God’s love
    Once you’ve experienced it
    You want to sing it’s fresh like springI
    You want to pass it on
    Verse 3
    I wish for you my friend
    This happiness that I’ve found
    You can depend on Him
    It matters not where you’re bound
    I’ll shout it from the mountain top
    I want my world to know
    The Lord of love has come to me!

  6. One of Billy Graham’s Gdaughters on a National TV show said recently, “if you wantto know what Billy Graham believed study his teachings/sermons.”

    As I have been reading this sermon from 2011 by Billy Graham, over and over I find so many nuggets that comes from a depth of truth and given in the simplest form. To me it’s like, take an aspirin for an ailment….I don’t know the complete history and ingredients of an aspirin but it’s been tried and proving for it’s use I’m told by the medical field. I feel like Dr Graham presents capsule truth in this form.

    I was reading this sermon on how to rightly love according to the Word of God and I found this right in the middle of his sermon, “Here in this country, [USA I added for clarification] we give billions of dollars away, but sometimes I wonder if our motive is not selfish. We are always asking the other nations and the other people, “What return is America going to get?” This sure awaken me to my prayers for our Nation.

    Our Nation is facing an impeachment trial at this very time against the President of the USA for this very thing. Asking another Nation to investigate his political opponent for his good if they want the millions of dollars appropriated by Congress for war to save lives.

    This sure gave me much to ponder before I open my smallness in heart and big prayer mouth in prayer.
    Philippians 2 New Living Translation gives these instructions, “Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear.”
    Philippians 2:12 is about working out the desire and power we have because of our salvation to do good works. In other words, God is telling us to “work out” or exercise our salvation. He is saying, don’t just sit there being saved and do nothing to help others.

    I pray that I am not caught up in political fervor but in the perfect love of the Lover of my soul. He is Judge, Priest and King. He is Lord of Lords! King of Kings! Coming Messiah!

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