When I’m Rich!

Many who find selfish ways to spend all of their income (and even more in some cases) openly claim they’d love to give to God’s work, if they only could “make it rich.”  The truth is that rarely happens.  When people are selfish with a little, they’ll be even more selfish if they have plenty.  The opposite is also true–those who are generous with what little they have are always much more generous if they have extra.  The poorest people in the world give a much larger percentage of their income to God’s work than those who are wealthy.  It’s a simple but undeniable fact.  So, if you’ve only got a little, thank God for what you have and give generously to His work.  You might just find that the less you care about money the more He may be able to trust you with.  You may also find that He uses what He teaches you on earth to prepare you for managing heavenly wealth.

“Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.  So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?  And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own?”  Jesus of Nazareth (Luke 16:10-12)

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Christian Living

Servant Witness?

I was browsing through some Bible commentary the other day and discovered something I hadn’t noticed before.  The Hebrew word sometimes translated “witness” can also be translated “servant”.  Interesting, I thought, since they are quite frankly the exact same thing and because I’m so quick to forget it.  What we do says much more than what we say, and what we say has a lot to do with how the world watches to see if we’re servants.

“Now get up and stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen of me and what I will show you.”  Acts 26:16

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Christian Living

It’s Too Dark!

heaves open

Just for a moment, imagine yourself in total darkness.  Maybe you awoke from a dream but it’s like the your still dreaming–there is absolutely no light available and you cannot see even your own hands.  You don’t know what happened, but you begin to realize you also cannot feel anything outside of yourself.  There seems to be nothing above you or below you that you can touch.  You swing your fists and kick your feet, but there is nothingness and total darkness encompassing all that you are. This is how it is for a soul that does not know the Lord.  They live in darkness, blinded by Satan and the desires of the flesh.  So what are we to do?  Most Christians take exactly the wrong approach when dealing with darkness.  They dive into it and join in with it!  In their ignorance they become just like those lost souls kicking and punching at darkness.  They join in with the joking, cursing, and other sinful behaviors.  Friends, darkness is never defeated that way!  The only way to gain territory from darkness is by introducing light.  Diving into blackness is meaningless unless you bring the Light with you and are prepared to introduce it into the darkness.  As you do, even the darkest night becomes lighter around you, and those lost souls can clearly see you’ve got the only answer to what ails them!

“the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”  Matthew 4:16

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Christian Living

Baby Tigers!

red sunset

Have you ever seen those cute little baby tigers the zoos always put in their advertisements.  They are so cute!  I think the totally white ones are cool, but the orange and black ones are awesome because they look so much like real baby tigers.  Either way, they’re kind of like house cats in the way they play with things and paw at everything.  It’s like you could just take them home and keep them in your room as pets.

And such is the case with “little” sins.  A lot of people (of all ages) like to toy with little sins.  They can be fun when you get right down and think about it.  Even the Bible admits that sin can be pleasurable for a while, but then it becomes like one of those little Bengal tigers that was so cute.  It starts to grow up and before you know it the things weights 600 pounds, eats raw meat and lives in your bedroom.  Oh… and guess what you’re made of!?

“By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.”  Heb 11:25

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

 

Posted in Christian Living

I’m Important?

How important are you in your school, sports team, or other group?  Are you one of those people who are immediately the most valuable player, or are you one who has to struggle for any recognition at all?  As sad as it may seem, there are teens who take their own lives each day because they don’t feel like they fit in–that they are somehow less important or valuable than those around them.  On the other side of the coin, there are teens that always seem to find ways to point out just how valuable they are.  Some of them never seem to shut up about how good they are at this or that!  Either extreme is wrong from a biblical perspective.  We ARE valuable, because God made us and gifted us with talents and abilities to serve Him and others.  Because we each are incredibly valuable in our own right, we don’t need to be prideful about it.  The truth is that many of the people who talk endlessly about their worth are the ones that doubt it the most.  Practically everything they do is in an effort to convince themselves.  So, no matter what everyone else says about you and no matter what you may think about yourself, you are an incredible work of art!  God says so, and that’s all that matters!  With that settled, spend the time you once spent on that subject investigating what He wants you to do with the life He gave you!

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?  Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father.  And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.  So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”  Jesus of Nazareth (Matthew 10:29-31)

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Encouragement

Criminal Record?

heaves open

When I was a young teen I got myself in some trouble and even spent one very long day in jail.  I admit there are a lot of people who would look at one day as some pretty light time for stealing, but being locked up even for a few minutes can be a life-changing experience.  It sure was for me!  For years I remember applying for jobs and having to indicate on applications that I had a criminal record.  When I went into the military I actually had to get a waiver just to have them consider allowing me to enlist.  Until I turned 23 my “sins” were available for anyone in law enforcement to pull up on the screen.  It was a terrible feeling.

On a spiritual note, for about 25 years I always felt like I had a criminal record with God–that He would never even consider allowing me to “apply” for entrance into His presence.  And then I learned that we all–every human on earth–also has a criminal record with God.  And along with it, I learned that through Christ, the Father is ever ready to erase it from His memory.

“This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.  Jesus of Nazareth (Matthew 26:28)

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Grace

It Hurts!

“But it hurts so bad!”

Have you ever tried to comfort someone and had them cry those words on your shoulder?  Have you ever spoken those words in a tearful slobber?  I’ve done both, because life just isn’t fair at times!  People are wicked to each other, and frankly, few seem to care!  Oftentimes, even those who care don’t seem like they’ve really ever been through the same things you’ve been through.  How could they really understand unless they’ve been there?  We can take great comfort in knowing that Jesus lived through every type of pain possible, and did it all without striking back at His oppressors.  He too cried, but not for Himself.  He cried for those who would murder Him, and for those who needed comfort.  There is nothing man or beast can do to you that Jesus cannot understand.

“I, even I, am he who comforts you.  Who are you that you fear mortal men, the sons of men, who are but grass, that you forget the Lord your Maker, who stretched out the heavens and laid the foundations of the earth, that you live in constant terror every day because of the wrath of the oppressor, who is bent on destruction?  For where is the wrath of the oppressor?  The cowering prisoners will soon be set free; they will not die in their dungeon, nor will they lack bread.”  Isaiah 51:12-14

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

 

 

Posted in Encouragement

Please, Trust Me!

“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?  Tell me, if you understand.  Who marked off its dimensions?  Surely you know!  Who stretched a measuring line across it?  On what were its footing set, or who laid its cornerstone–while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?”  Job 38:4-7

If Jesus is your Savior, then you’ve believed and accepted that He died for your sins on that cruel Roman cross.  If He is your Lord, then He is in charge of your life–you’re bought and paid for!  Essentially, you are a willing disciple–a slave–doing the will of your master at every turn.  Does that sound like any Christians you know?  Does it sound like you?  I believe the Savior part is easy enough to accept once the scales are removed from our eyes–the Spirit witnessing all the while.  The harder part is submitting to God’s authority on a daily, or should I say “secondly” basis.  Often, we just don’t trust God to handle it in our best interests.  Let me ask you this rhetorical question…  If God could speak the world into existence, cast the stars into the sky, and give us breath and life… why don’t we believe He can take care of the minute details of our lives?  Why don’t we take Him at His promises?  He said to bring Him EVERYTHING!  Need we be reminded that the only one who gains when we are rendered unfaithful is our old adversary, Satan himself!  Sure, we’re saved… but are we worth a nickel to our Master?

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:6-7

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby@Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Christian Living, Encouragement

ME!

Probably the most difficult thing to do in this life is to deny one’s self.  Interestingly enough, I believe self-denial is the most important ingredient in any relationship that’s worth a nickel.  Can you imagine a place where everyone was exclusively interested in pleasing themselves–to the detriment of everyone around them?  Now, imagine a place where everyone is exclusively interested in pleasing those around them, especially those with less means, and expecting nothing in return.  The first place sounds like hell to me… the second, like heaven above!  If you want to have close friends, relationships that are meaningful, or even a strong walk with the Lord, you’ve got to deny yourself each and every day… there’s not one single day where you won’t be tempted at some point or another to do things your own way, or for your own gain.  Know this my friends… as long as we inhabit these earthly vessels, we all in this one together.  If you’ve got a friend like the one I’m describing, don’t let this day go by without thanking God for them, and then make sure to let them know just how much you appreciate them.  And… don’t forget to thank God for the most important relationship of all!

“Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.  No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”  1 John 4:11-12

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Christian Living

Smooth Sailing?

Think back for a moment.  When was the time you grew the most in your walk with the Lord?  Was it during a time when everything was going just fine, or was it at a tough time in your life?  As for me, it’s always been the tough times.  I once heard a  pastor say, “It hurts when God stretches us, but that’s the only way we grow!”  I guess that’s right too.  If I had things MY way, I’d just cruise on day-to-day with things going perfectly.  God thinks otherwise, however!  Just today I was engrossed in my Bible, turning page after page of Scripture that I completely agreed with and that I felt 100% comfortable with in my life.  Just then, a paragraph or two hit me like a brick!  “I don’t do well here,” I thought… and then I thanked God for the slap!  Now that’s something I never thought I’d do!

“In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.  But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.”  2 Timothy 3:12-15

In Christ,

PastorJimKilby @Kilbin8er

Jim@JamesKilby.com

Posted in Christian Living