God is delighted when you delight in Him

For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He adorns the humble with salvation.  Let the godly exult in glory, let them sing for joy on their beds.  (Psalm 149:4-5)

God doesn’t get the most glory out of the submission of slaves, but from the celebration of sons and daughters.  His greatest desire isn’t that people would obey Him out of the fear of punishment, but that they would worship Him out of delight at the reward of His pleasure.

He is a loving Father who wants the greatest good and the deepest joy for His children, and He knows that these things only come when we walk in fellowship with Him.

So, let God Himself be your treasure today, and as you do, you can have confidence that you’re pleasing Him because of this truth.

God is delighted when you delight in Him.

–Pastor Phillip

More than Mary

As [Jesus] was saying these things, a woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “The womb that bore you and the one who nursed you are blessed!”  He said, “Even more, those who hear the word of God and keep it are blessed.”  (Luke 11:27-28)

Some traditions venerate Mary, the mother of Jesus.  They speak of the favor she had with God, the righteousness she had before God, and the blessing she received from God.

Yet, Jesus says that if you follow Him faithfully, hearing His words and obeying His commands, something incredible can be said of you.

You are more blessed than Mary.

–Pastor Phillip

Jesus shares His glory with the faithful

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.  But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when His glory is revealed.  (1 Peter 4:12-13)

Trials are tests of our faithfulness.  They are a mechanism by which God gives us the chance to overcome earthly struggles to gain heavenly rewards.

This is the same road Jesus endured.  He was loved and cherished by the Father, yet was given a path to walk that was full of struggle.  But, it was that very struggle that qualified Him for the fullness of glory on the other side. (See Hebrews 5:7-10, 12:2)

Now Jesus offers the same to you, an opportunity to join Him in suffering so that you may also join Him in receiving glorious rewards.

This is not about salvation or eternal destiny.  That question was settled once and for all at the cross and made available by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.  This is about blessing and glory and the hope of reward for all who are faithful in following Christ.

Are you hurting because of your stand for Jesus?  Are you struggling because of your commitment to God?  Are you being persecuted because you choose to walk with Christ rather than follow the world?

Take heart!  Hang in there!  Stand strong, and as you walk in faithfulness, take courage in this hope-inspiring truth.

Jesus shares His glory with the faithful.

–Pastor Phillip

God saves you for his glory

God’s Hope for Your Heart from Psalm 79

GOD SAVES YOU FOR HIS GLORY

Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of Your name; deliver us, and atone for our sins, for Your name’s sake!  (Psalm 79:9-10)

There is an order to all creation, a cosmic balance in the physical universe that was designed to work in harmony.  When that balance is disturbed, chaos ensues.

The same is true in the spiritual world.  There is a sequence, a balance, a divine order of priority that God established, and when things are in their rightful place, there is harmony and peace.

This is why it is so vital to remember the preeminence of the glory of God.

He is not a selfish tyrant seeking an ego boost.  He is a loving Father who knows how His universe and His people will best flourish, and that only happens when all things are focused on bringing glory to God.

As you pray for help and deliverance, let your heart and mind be tuned to the thing that matters most.  You will find your greatest peace when you follow this guiding principle: God saves you for His glory.

-Pastor Phillip

God chose you for glory

God’s Hope for Your Heart from 2 Thessalonians 2

GOD CHOSE YOU FOR GLORY

God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.  To this He called you through our gospel, so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.  (2 Thessalonians 2:13-14)

Christian, never forget that God chose you.

You did not draw His attention by your efforts; He simply loved you by His grace.

You did not earn His favor by your merit; He simply called you by His mercy.

You did not convince Him with your potential; He simply pursued you because He loves you.

This means that in Christ, there’s nothing to earn, nothing to prove, and nothing to fear!

Not only that, but God saved you for a good purpose and a great destiny. He chose you to become not a slave, but a son or daughter, not a laborer, but an heir of the Kingdom.

So, if you’re in Christ you can rest in this liberating truth: God chose you for glory.

-Pastor Phillip

God wants to make an example of you

God’s Hope for Your Heart from Psalm 67

GOD WANTS TO MAKE AN EXAMPLE OF YOU

May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face to shine upon us, that Your way may be known on earth, Your saving power among all nations.  (Psalm 67:1-2)

The God of the universe has one primary goal above all others: the display of His glory.

Through His works in creation, He displays the glory of His power.  Through His offering of redemption through Christ, He displays the glory of His grace.  Through His blessings to His children, He displays the glory of His love.

Your life was redeemed and positioned for blessings because God loves you, yes.  However, the reasons for His grace go much deeper, and your life has much greater purpose than just passively receiving.  God has chosen you to actively display His glory to the rest of humanity!

So, let your heart and mind and hands and mouth be devoted to showing and telling the glory of God to the world around you.  Focus your life on bringing Him glory in all things, and watch as your Heavenly Father brings all sorts of blessings into your life to show His glory to the world.

As you focus on His glory, you’ll be able to see opportunity in whatever circumstances come your way.  As you do, you’ll find you can always have hope because of this truth: God wants to make an example of you.

-Pastor Phillip


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Jesus wants you to be rich in him

God’s Hope for Your Heart from 2 Corinthians 8

JESUS WANTS YOU TO BE RICH IN HIM

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, so that you by His poverty might become rich.  (2 Corinthians 8:9)

Jesus was not rich in silver or gold, but in power, in glory, and in love.

He was infinitely adored in heaven, yet came to earth to be despised and rejected by men.  He was infinitely glorious in heaven, yet came down to be born out of wedlock, a poor peasant from a backwater town.  He was infinitely powerful in heaven, yet came here to have His rights stripped away and let Himself be mocked, beaten and killed.  All these riches and more, Jesus chose to give up.  Why?

So that you could receive them by grace through faith in Him.

You were created for the purpose of displaying the glory of God.  Yet, sin stepped in and hijacked your life, turning it in on itself instead of up to God where it belongs.

So, glory you received was focused on you.  Power you attained was wielded for you.  Love you gained was hoarded by you.  Even good deeds you did were ultimately about you, and a self-focused life is a poor one, indeed.

But Jesus wants something better for you!

Jesus let Himself be unloved by men so you could receive the love of the Father.

Jesus gave up full use of His power so you could be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus gave up His heavenly glory—for a time—so that you could become glorious in Him and thus bring great glory to God.

Through power and provision, glory and good deeds, Jesus wants to do great things in and through your life.  That’s why you can have hope in this incredible truth: Jesus wants you to be rich in Him.

-Pastor Phillip


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When you lift God up, He lifts you up, too

God’s Hope for Your Heart from Romans 4

WHEN YOU LIFT GOD UP, HE LIFTS YOU UP, TOO

He grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God.  (Romans 4:20b)

In the midst of impossible circumstances, Abraham’s faith stayed strong.  In the face of unbeatable odds, Abraham’s confidence in God only grew.  While those around him said the promise was too good to be true, Abraham knew the One who promised was too good for it not to be.

How did he do it?  How did Abraham remain steadfast in his faith when it was so dearly tested?

He gave glory to God.

No matter how bad your predicament appears, you can stand strong as you give glory to God.  Prayer, praise, testimony and thanks — these are tools that will strengthen your faith in any circumstance, and as you use them, you’ll discover the hope found in this truth: As you lift God up, He lifts you up, too.

-Pastor Phillip


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Jesus heals for the glory of God

God’s Hope for Your Heart from Matthew 15

JESUS HEALS FOR THE GLORY OF GOD

And great crowds came to him, bringing with them the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute, and many others, and they put them at His feet, and He healed them, so that the crowd wondered, when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled healthy, the lame walking, and the blind seeing.  And they glorified the God of Israel.  (Matthew 15:30-31)

Jesus loves to heal!

We see this all throughout the Gospels, as again and again we read that when people brought their sick and hurting loved ones to Jesus, He healed them all.  But Jesus’ first priority isn’t healing.  It’s the glory of God.

Jesus loves people!

We see this in the compassion He showed for the hungry, the hurting and the lost.  He provided food and fresh hope to many people.  But Jesus’ first priority isn’t people.  It’s the glory of God.

Jesus loves you!

Throughout the Scriptures we see that our God is seeking Savior, looking for and desiring that people everywhere be saved and redeemed.  Even though He dealt often with large crowds, Jesus repeatedly showed His love for individuals by spending one-on-one time with them in their hour of need.  But Jesus’ first priority isn’t you, and it isn’t me.  His greatest desire isn’t you, and it isn’t me.

It’s the glory of God, and this is a wonderful thing!  Why?

Because when we understand Jesus’ desire for the glory of the Father, it frees us from the weight of having to make sure we’re good enough to earn His healing compassion and love.

He’s not seeking to bless you for your sake, but for the glory of God, and that means the pressure’s off and you can simply receive the blessing.

As you wait for God’s perfect methods and timing for your healing, may you rest in hope as you remember that you’re off the hook of earning the right to be healed.  Why?  Because of this truth: Jesus heals for the glory of God.

-Pastor Phillip


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Jesus shares His glory with the faithful

Scripture Notes on 1 Peter 4

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when His glory is revealed. (1 Peter 4:12-13)

Trials are tests of our faithfulness. They are a mechanism by which God gives us the chance to overcome earthly struggles to gain heavenly rewards.

This is the same road Jesus endured. He was loved and cherished by the Father, yet was given a path to walk that was full of struggle. But, it was that very struggle that qualified Him for the fullness of glory on the other side. (See Hebrews 5:7-10, 12:2)

Now Jesus offers the same to you, an opportunity to join Him in suffering so that you may also join Him in receiving glorious rewards.

This is not about salvation or eternal destiny. That question was settled once and for all at the cross and made available by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. This is about blessing and glory and the hope of reward for all who are faithful in following Christ.

Are you hurting because of your stand for Jesus? Are you struggling because of your commitment to God? Are you being persecuted because you choose to walk with Christ rather than follow the world?

Take heart! Hang in there! Stand strong, and as you walk in faithfulness, take courage in this hope-inspiring truth.

Jesus shares His glory with the faithful.

-Pastor Phillip

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