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Leaving a Legacy Ministries with Codi Gandee

Using the Word to Encourage Others

Month

April 2014

Traveling Forecast

Matthew 7:13

Isaiah 35:8-9

Sounds were coming from every direction.

HONK! HONK!

Then a collective gasp.

Followed by a sigh of relief.

Finished up by the pounding of our hearts.

Driving on a highway can be pretty intense.

My friends and I had been traveling to conference a few hours away. We encountered some close calls. It seems that for the most part drivers on the road are mostly concerned with themselves. Selfishness and pride seem to reign. Being courteous to others seems to go out the window in the fast paced lanes.

Just the same as manners and hospitality in the day to day life. Walking the roads of this world can be pretty daunting. We can become caught up in the moment and collide because of poor judgment. Often times lack of wisdom causes mass chaos all around.

But not on the Highway of Holiness.

On this highway evil has been banished. Sinful nature doesn’t exist.  Everyone traveling it is going the same direction, happy for the traveling companions all around.  It is a path where all who walk upon it stand righteous before the King.

This highway is one where you never lose sight of your destination. It’s just a one way street with no turns, no stops, and no confusion.

Let the Highway of Holiness be the route you choose to travel.

The Resurrector

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John 6:63

Matthew 9:18-19 & 23-25

The father approached Jesus. His daughter laid in her bed, seemingly dead to all of those around her. Only one thing could bring her back to life: Jesus.

Jesus went to her and she rose up again.

Do you feel like your dead on your feet?

Like the hope you once lived for isn’t worth much to you at all anymore?

Are you in need of a spiritual resuscitation?

If so I have a a suggestion for you: Jesus; The Word made flesh.

Jesus speaks of The Word being “spirit and life”.

So by contrast to not have The Word is death.

If you’re in need of spiritual CPR read your bible. Study it. Listen to music that is based upon it. Meditate upon it. Apply it’s truths to your life. And then be prepared for the feelings of life to resurface again.

Reservations Under Love

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I John 4:19

John 21:4-14

“Momma you are the best cook in the whole world.”

Strangely enough, I tend to receive these compliments on a semi-regular basis.

(Although occasionally it is given as a reassurance when I make something that turns out a little “golden brown”.)

But mostly my husband and children just brag on my cooking skills as we enjoy a simple dinner together.

So what then has elevated me to “five star chef status” in my family’s minds?

I started thinking on Jesus and a few meals that He has been associated with. Two came to mind.

First I was reminded of the bonfire in which Jesus served fish and bread.

I’m guessing that the disciples were still raving over their breakfast when dinner time rolled around. Surely they chalked it up to being the best meal they had ever taken part in. Maybe Jesus’ culinary skills came into conversation but I bet the focus of their chatter was the greatness of their love for Him and the love they felt from Him. And what it was like just to be in His presence at the meal.

Fish sandwiches have never sounded overly appetizing to me but you can be assured that I too would have eaten it since Jesus was the one that had prepared it.

Then I began thinking on the meal that He began preparing for us thousands of years ago: the Marriage Supper of The Lamb.

Our Jesus, the Master Chef, began preparing this meal the moment He left heaven to walk upon the earth that He had created. As a man, born of a virgin, He chose to live a perfect life so that He could be our spotless sacrifice on the cross of Calvary. In victory He rose up out of the grave, defeating death, making a way for us to live eternally with Him. And now He is finishing up the final touches on the meal He has gone to prepare for His children.

So how is it that burnt grilled cheese sandwiches get rave reviews? Or that fish and bread can become the meal of a lifetime?

The reality of the words spoken around my kitchen table began to sink in.

My family isn’t necessarily blown away by my “amazing” cooking skills as much as they are just proclaiming their love for me because they can feel the love I have for them.

Nor was it about the food at the bonfire. Instead it was about the love in which it was served and consumed.

And love is the reason that we want to be in attendance at the marriage supper of the lamb. Becoming part of the bride that Jesus returns for is only possible if we choose to reciprocate the love He has offered us.

Love has the power to defy odds in altering my family’s tastebuds. And maybe even in the disciples.

But most importantly Love has made it possible for us to share in the greatest meal of all eternity.

Allow it to reserve you a seat at the Heavenly Feast.

A Calm Midst the Chaos

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Philippians 4:7

Joshua 3:14-17

Probably most people like to wake up with the thought of having a predictable, peaceful day ahead of them.

I do.

But over the past couple of days almost everything that I’ve encountered hasn’t gone the way I’ve planned.

The amazing thing is what I felt through this time: God’s presence which translated into peace. I knew that He was with me and that He was going before me. I knew that He was in control, even though the current situation wasn’t looking too good. I could feel His presence.

Just like the children of Israel as they went to cross the Jordan River.

As they stood on the banks of the river, ark in tow, I’m getting the sense that they weren’t stressing over their situation. Even as the priests’ feet dipped in the brim of the water I would say they that they still felt the presence of God around them. And they allowed His presence to be the source of the peace and calmness they were experiencing.

Then their God showed out and made a way for them. Their feelings of peace were warranted. God had been in complete control the entire time.

Certainly they were thankful for the extraordinary event that had just taken place in their life. It was through this experience that their faith in God had been strengthened. This God filled moment provided them with a sense of security and built a bridge for future generations to be reminded of the glory of their God.

Allow Jesus’ presence in the midst of your chaos overcome you. When you do not even a rushing river will be able to drown out His whispers of peace.

The Battle Field

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Proverbs 18:19

The man stood in solitude.

A familiar noise filled the air. He looked to find the source of it. On the horizon he saw an army of people coming toward him.

In disgust he turned his back on them and walked away.

These were the people that had wronged him. They were the ones that had made him feel unimportant, useless, unintelligent and unloved.

“Why would they be coming at me again?” he wondered. “I want nothing to do with them.”

A hush fell over the crowd that was pursuing him. He turned to look.

The Captain appeared from within their midst. He was walking toward him.

Immediately the man recognized Him.

“I’m coming to you in love, on their behalf, for your good. They’ve repented for the way they’ve treated you. They’re sorry for the way they’ve made you feel. They are seeking you’re forgiveness.”

The man stood speechless. It had been years since he had been wronged. For years he had been ignoring their plea of repentance. He had never even given it consideration.

Until now.

Now, as the captain spoke, something within him gave way. The man felt the bars he had put up begin to crumble. Finally the bitterness began to subside. Relief started to trickle over him as forgiveness filled his heart.

He was tired of denying these people. Tired of refusing the plea from their captain. Sick of the burden that had taken an ugly toll on his life.

He could stand it no longer.

The man fell into step with The Captain and went to meet the army in love.

Reconciliation had been won. Both sides were declared victorious.

And so goes the battle for an offended brother.

The bible teaches that an offended brother is harder to be won than a strong city.

But upsets happen all the time.

Keep praying. Keep consulting The Captain, our Lord, on their behalf. Ask others to join you in the fight for their soul. And let Jesus lead the battle.

Freedom Granted

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Romans 8:1

Zechariah 3:1-8

Joshua stood before The Lord awaiting the sentence. He had just been put on trial, prosecuted by Satan himself. As he anxiously awaits the verdict he knows it doesn’t look good. The arguments made against him were valid. He had made many mistakes in the past.

His head dropped as he realized that his future hung in the balance and that his end was coming up short.

Satan was silenced as the Judge spoke, “This man will not be tried based on who he once was.”

The sentence was given: freedom to move forward.

Joshua’s head jerked up as he stared at the Judge.

“Joshua has been forgiven of all his past sin. I no longer hold him accountable. He has been awarded a fresh start.”

Satan stood beside Joshua defeated.

Joshua stood before The Lord sinless, without fault.

And in this we see a picture of ourselves.

Christian, remember that when Satan stands beside you, buffeting you, that Jesus is standing before you, calling you to freedom. He no longer holds you accountable for past sin. Don’t allow the Naysayer deter you from living a life of victory.

Reach out to Jesus instead of falling into step with the enemy.

Gratefulness

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I John 4:19

“Why do they call it Good Friday then, Mom? It should be called Sad Friday.”

Tears stung my eyes as I thought on what my little girl had just asked.

“Well, because it was good for us. Without Jesus’ death on the cross there wouldn’t be a way for us to go to Him in Heaven.”

The back seat was quiet as gratefulness filled our vehicle.

Gratefulness for Jesus’ sacrificial love that He showed us by dying on the cross all of those years ago.

Gratefulness for His blood that He shed for me, my husband, my children and you.

Gratefulness for the power that He possessed to defeat death, hell and the grave once and for all.

And gratefulness that I am His and He is mine.

Value

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Matthew 20:28

Matthew 27:3-5

The bag that they handed Judas was heavy.

Immediately he probably felt a bit of hope or relief. “Maybe” he thought, “maybe they decided to give me more than just thirty pieces of silver. Maybe conspiring against Jesus will be worth it after all.”

But just as quickly as the thought came the moment of hope was diminished. Because in his heart, without even opening the bag, he knew that no amount of money could ever make up for the guilt he felt.

Sickeningly he opened the bag. He fell to his knees as the silver spilled on the ground. Reality dawned on him. This was the price that he put on his soul.

He ran back to the chief priests and begged for them to take back the money…for Jesus to be released.

They all but laughed in his face. Judas’ soul was just the means to their goal.

Judas was helpless. In an angry tirade he threw the money in the temple. Coins scattered everywhere. People stopped to stare. But he was oblivious to it all. Shock and regret poured over him.

Life as he knew it was over.

In hatred and remorse he hung himself.

I took a little bit of liberty in retelling the story of Judas’ betrayal. But can’t you imagine that those emotions were probably real? Maybe you’ve experienced them yourself?

The sickness that a believer feels when they betray their Jesus is enough to make us want to hole up never to be found again.

And that’s exactly where Satan would have you to stay.

But instead of hiding from Jesus run to Him.

He is waiting.

He has already put a price on your soul and paid it in full on the cross of Calvary all of those years ago.

Troubling Truth

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Matthew 27:46

As a little girl I tried to allow myself to believe that Jesus didn’t actually suffer on the cross. I tried to convince myself that since Jesus was God’s only begotten Son that He probably had some sort of super power that allowed Him to go through the motions numb, without any feeling, both emotionally and physically.

But in my heart I was afraid that Jesus really did experience all of that pain and agony for me. I had an inkling that that was the truth. I went to my mom for wisdom on the matter.

Her answer solidified my fear. In that moment the illusion that I had created was gone. At that point I was broken hearted.

Jesus’ suffering was real.

So here I am, years later remembering the conversation I had had with Mom. As I studied the scripture this morning the Spirit showed me again how emotionally and physically invested Jesus was on the cross of Calvary.

The bible teaches that he CRIED with a LOUD voice, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” which means: My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Again I feel guilty. My Savior wasn’t just acting a part or going through the motions. He was completely invested. Physically, yes. Emotionally too. Upon that cross Jesus was brutally tortured for me. For you.

And He felt it all.

Jesus never just went through the motions. Sadly, we often times do. We allow our walk with Him to become a habit. Maybe because in the flesh it’s easier that way. If we don’t feel then it is easier to deny His will in our life. If we aren’t attentive to the Spirit we can easily drift into numbness.

But I encourage you to become revived in The Lord. Stop just going through the motions. Become emotionally invested. The intensity and intimacy with Him will strengthen your relationship.

Be real with Jesus.

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