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Our prayer are that these blogs help you welcome Jesus into your life. Thus, having a better relationship with Him and having life to it full. If you find these blogs encouraging and help you welcome Jesus into your life, feel free to share them with your friends. Help them to learn that when they welcome Jesus they welcome life.

Initial Contact

by: Joshua Golightly

04/26/2019

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A lot of things happened in the days that followed Jesus' resurrection from the dead. In many of the cases Jesus appeared to people and they did not recognize Him because He hid Himself.

The first contact that Jesus had with others was the day of His resurrection. Mary Madalene and Mary went to look at the tomb where Jesus was buried. Although to their surprise, and astonishment, Jesus was no longer in the tomb. An angel came to them and spoke with them about what Jesus had said while He was still on the earth.

There are two accounts in the… read more

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A lot of things happened in the days that followed Jesus' resurrection from the dead. In many of the cases Jesus appeared to people and they did not recognize Him because He hid Himself.

The first contact that Jesus had with others was the day of His resurrection. Mary Madalene and Mary went to look at the tomb where Jesus was buried. Although to their surprise, and astonishment, Jesus was no longer in the tomb. An angel came to them and spoke with them about what Jesus had said while He was still on the earth.

There are two accounts in the Bible that talk about this event. One is found in Matthew 28:1-10 and the other is found in John 20:11-18.

While these two accounts speak of the event differently we can see one thing that they both have in common. Jesus appeared. He may have done it in two different ways, according to the accounts, but He appeared to Mary Magdalene and Mary.

He spoke with them and told them to go back and tell the disciples that they had seen Him. He told them to tell the good news that He was no longer dead.

Both accounts also mention angels. They speak about how the angels spoke with the women and told them not to be afraid because Jesus had risen from the dead. He is no longer dead but alive.

When Jesus made the initial contact with the women they were afraid. In Matthew's account they fell before Jesus and worshipped Him. And in John's account Mary Magdalene was standing outside the tomb alone, and crying, when Jesus came to her looking like the gardener. She was crying because she had thought that he had done something with Jesus' body.

All these things can take place when we first meet Jesus in our own lives. We can get afraid. We can bow down in worship. We can hear that still small voice speaking to us and letting us know that we should no longer look for the living among the dead. When Jesus appears in our lives He does not want us to be afraid. He wants to show us that He is alive! And then He wants us to tell others!

I remember the first time that I met the living Jesus. It was at teen camp. I did not believe in God. So when the speaker prayed for me I was very skeptical of everything, but that was when I encountered the living God. It was in a moments time that all my sins flashed before my eyes. I was afraid. I didn't know what to do. So I did the only thing that felt right. I worshipped. My life has never been the same.

Jesus told the women to go back and tell the disciples what they had just seen. They saw Jesus. They met a man who was dead and is now alive. This man appeared to them and changed their lives.

Our initial contact with Jesus, a true contact, will change our lives. It does not happen because you are reading this blog. It does not happen because you go to church on Sundays and listen to the speaker talk about Jesus. Our lives are changed when we have contact with Jesus. When we talk to Him personally through prayer. When we read our Bibles in personal devotional times.

When we do these things we receive the life that Jesus now has. He takes away the sting of sin, death, and gives us eternal life with Him. He does this through the Holy Spirit living inside us. When we have the initial contact with Jesus He will change you and give you life.

When you welcome Jesus, you welcome Life.

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It Is Finished

by: Joshua Golightly

04/19/2019

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Today is Good Friday, well that is what Christians call it at least. It is the day that our Lord, and Savior, Jesus Christ willingly went to the cross to die and pay the ultimate price for our sins. So in once sense we get that as a good thing, hence Good Friday, and in another we can see that as a lot of pain that someone endured. The Good thing is that Jesus endured that pain so that you would not have to. He paid the price of sin that cost Him His life. And He did it to… read more

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Today is Good Friday, well that is what Christians call it at least. It is the day that our Lord, and Savior, Jesus Christ willingly went to the cross to die and pay the ultimate price for our sins. So in once sense we get that as a good thing, hence Good Friday, and in another we can see that as a lot of pain that someone endured. The Good thing is that Jesus endured that pain so that you would not have to. He paid the price of sin that cost Him His life. And He did it to give you the life that He has always wanted you to have.

We all love test don't we? I mean the pressure when we have a certain amount of time to complete something and if we don't complete the task in that amount of time we could get into trouble. The adrenaline rush that you get because you want to finish the task in the fastest amount of time possible. (Oh, that may just be me that I am talking about.)

We all can start a test. But how we start a test doesn't mean anything. It is how we finish the test that counts. It is the outcome that matters the most. Have you ever had to do a test that required nothing from you?

Let's face it, our whole life journey is a test. But can you imagine someone finishing that test for you?

The verses that we are going to read about for today's post are short but very important. They are important because it speaks about a test Jesus finished for us.

Jesus has just gone through a lot of torture. He has just endured a lot of pain. He was nailed to a cross. I cry when I stub my toe on something small, and Jesus went through a lot more pain than me by going to the cross. Jesus was following the instructions that were written out for Him to complete.

All of scripture points to Jesus. All the commandments and prophecies, every part points to Jesus. He was in the beginning and He will be with us till the end of time. In these verses Jesus was finishing the test, He was finishing His journey, that was laid out before Him.

John 19:28-30

Today this would be something similar to just plain finishing school. Stop and thing about something, you are in school for majority of your life (depending on how old you are now, but back when you were young...) between the ages of 6-18. So for 13 years you are doing school work. Whether be home school, private school, or public school. You are doing test after test after test. As an adult, we are still doing test after test after test.

Back to school... When will the madness ever end?! Until one day it does. It is your senior year in high school and you are about to graduate. All of those tests and homework assignments have finally paid off and you are finishing school.

You followed all the instructions given to you by the teachers. You helped with projects with your peers. Is all of this starting to sound familiar? Jesus did this. He was tested by the Pharisees and the teachers of the law. He was questioned and tried, even to the point of death. He healed people. He helped people. He taught His disciples. It is now His senior year and He is completing everything that He has worked towards.

Jesus death on the cross was not for Himself, but rather His death was for us. Jesus was perfect. He never committed any sin. He never did any wrong. Imagine being the parent of Jesus; life must have been really easily.

Jesus' death was meant to finish the test that was ours to take. His death was to bring us back into the relationship with our heavenly Father. For years the prophets would proclaim a coming Messiah who would rescue His people from slavery. The prophets were talking about Jesus and Israel but God meant for ALL PEOPLE to be His children.

Jesus is the start and finisher of our salvation. He was with God at the beginning of time. Right when Adam and Eve did what they were not suppose to do Jesus was there. He is the one that loves us so much that He wanted to fulfill every word that the Bible teaches about Him. The three simple words, "It is Finished." are powerful to hear. He is finishing a test to bring us back into a right relationship with God.

Jesus finished sin. He defeated the power that sin has over us. "It is finished."

Everyone reading these words, Jesus gave up His life for you. He did this so that you can have joy. He did this so that you can have peace. He did this so that you no longer have to live the life that you have been living.

Jesus died on the cross so that you can welcome true life into your life. He finished a journey to teach each of us how to truly live and love one another. He did this out of mercy and grace.

Today as we celebrate Good Friday remember all the pain that Jesus endured to finish a test that was our to take. He died to bring us back to Him. He died so that we no longer have to live a life of sin. He died, and said "It is finished." to give us life. When we welcome Jesus today we welcome life.

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The Accusation Trap

by: Joshua Golightly

07/11/2018

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Have you ever accused someone of wrong doing or accused someone of something that they may not have actually done? Have you ever looked at someone and thought to yourself, "At least I am not as bad as that person."? Once these thoughts start to enter your mind you have already began accusing that person of wrong that they have done. You have accused that person of being beneath you.

We all want to make ourselves look better then we truly are. We desire for people to see only the best of us. We don't want them to see the worse… read more

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Have you ever accused someone of wrong doing or accused someone of something that they may not have actually done? Have you ever looked at someone and thought to yourself, "At least I am not as bad as that person."? Once these thoughts start to enter your mind you have already began accusing that person of wrong that they have done. You have accused that person of being beneath you.

We all want to make ourselves look better then we truly are. We desire for people to see only the best of us. We don't want them to see the worse of us because then we can't accuse them of their wrong doings. We can't tell them what they have done wrong because then they can turn it around and tell us what we have done wrong. It then becomes a two way street.

The Bible had people who did the same thing. The Pharisees and the teachers of the law always wanted to make themselves look good. They held themselves up in very high regard. They always wanted to be seen as the most popular and holy people. Now I am not saying that we are all Pharisees. No, I am saying that we all have those thoughts and sometimes those actions. We are human. Selfish thinking is human nature.

After Jesus was around for some time the Pharisees and the teachers of the law started to not like Him very much. They did not like Him mainly because He made them look bad. No longer were they the most popular people, now Jesus was the most popular. No longer did people go to them; now everyone wanted to go to Him for things. Jesus was also teaching the people things that, to them, contradicted the Law of Moses. So they decided to come up with a plan to trap Jesus. And they did this by accusing Him of breaking law.

John 8:2-6a (NIV)

After reading this part of the scripture we can start to think, "What sort of trap are we talking about here?" There are at least two traps that the Pharisees were trying to get Jesus to fall for.

The first was: They used the Law of Moses saying that this woman should be stoned, basically put to death, because of her actions. They knew if Jesus would have stood up and said, "Stone her" they could turn him into the Roman officials because he had no right to put someone to death. Only the Romans had that right.

The second trap was: If Jesus would have stood up and said, "We do nothing to her." Thus avoiding sentencing her to death. The Jews would have been upset because Jesus was not obeying the Law.

This put Jesus in a very tough spot. One that I do not know how I would have gotten out of, without getting into some sort of trouble with someone. However, we will get to that in another blog post.

What we want to focus on right now is how the Pharisees and the teachers of the law were trying to make themselves look good. We need to avoid this in our lives. We need to avoid having the Pharisees mindset of, "I am not that bad, look at so and so". If this mindset is taken on, this is where we start accusing people of their wrong doing.

Now the thing about this woman was that she was caught in the act of adultery. In other words, they were not accusing her but rather telling everyone what she had done. But isn't that what accusing is, telling others what they have done wrong? Majority of the time we tend to not accuse people of doing something good but rather accuse them for doing something wrong. They want to make this woman, and Jesus, look bad. This made them feel better about who they were.

We start to run low on grace and humility when we start to stand in a crowd accusing others before we accuse ourselves. Bottom line. We think that we are doing the right thing, and we may be doing the right thing depending on the circumstances. However, when we are only doing it to make ourselves look good then we are not showing any humility or grace.

Jesus came into this world to show us humility and grace. We are to be like Jesus. When we are like Jesus and are welcoming Him then we receive and give more grace. That is the life that Jesus wants for everyone. When we welcome Jesus we welcome Life.

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