Sunday, September 11, 2016

The Value of Level Ground

by Gregory A. Johnson

We experience ups and downs throughout our life. The peaks are only fleeting moments. Oh, how I long for level ground. It’s on level ground where we can do our best work for the Lord. We need God to lead us to level ground on a daily basis.

Running on level ground in my first marathon - Gregory A. JohnsonI learned the value of level ground from running marathons. I have run marathons on both hilly and level terrain. Like most runners, I prefer level ground because running uphill expends a lot of energy, and running downhill is hard on the quads, especially in miles 20 through 26.2. It’s hard enough for me to make it on level ground!

Some of the hills we encounter in life are unavoidable, but many are caused by us. When we go our own way and do our own thing, ignoring God as the Lord of our life, we put ourselves on a hilly course.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Kingdom Love

by Gregory A. Johnson

Kingdom Love, by Gregory A. Johnson"Soon afterward he went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a great crowd went with him. As he drew near to the gate of the town, behold, a man who had died was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow, and a considerable crowd from the town was with her. And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her and said to her, 'Do not weep.' Then he came up and touched the bier, and the bearers stood still. And he said, 'Young man, I say to you, arise.' And the dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus gave him to his mother. Fear seized them all, and they glorified God, saying, 'A great prophet has arisen among us!' and 'God has visited his people!' And this report about him spread through the whole of Judea and all the surrounding country" (Luke 7:11-17).

In Jesus' day, there were neither life insurance benefits nor government provision for widows. Widows were to be taken care of and provided for by the children of the family, and Scripture specifically tells us here that this dead man was the only son of this widow. I imagine there were many who attended the funeral and were in this procession that said things like, "I feel so sorry for her." There is a big difference between feeling sorry for people and being able and willing to do something about their condition.


Saturday, May 14, 2016

Moved with Compassion

by Gregory A. Johnson

Moved with Compassion, by Gregory A. JohnsonDictionary.com defines compassion as "a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is
stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering."

As Jesus walked this earth, He revealed great compassion for both the individuals and the crowds of people around Him. At the very core of that compassion was His love for all people. Every person—those He taught, touched, healed, fed, delivered and set free—experienced the love of the kingdom.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Something Worth Repeating

by Gregory A. Johnson
Something Worth Repeating, by Gregory A. Johnson

I love the Lord’s salvation. The Lord is great!

The Lord’s salvation is not a random act because we sinned. The Lord planned to save us before the foundation of the earth was even formed. In His foreknowledge, He knew that His creation would sin, but He created us anyway. Why? Because we are His inheritance, and He desires to spend eternity with us. The Lord is great!

While we were still sinners, God put His plan into action and sent Jesus to die for our sins. We are cleansed by the blood of Jesus. He has given us the Holy Spirit to make us holy. The Lord is Great!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Why You Should Never Stop Asking

By Gregory A. Johnson

Why You Should Never Stop Asking, by Gregory A. JohnsonWhen my daughter was young, she kept asking me for the same thing over and over again—she wanted a cat. I kept putting her off, but she never gave up. Every year for Christmas, she would ask for a cat. As a ten-year-old, she must have thought that she would never get what she was asking her father for, but she never wavered. Believe me; she was persistent with her asking!

As I was leaving my office one evening, I noticed a sign across the street at the veterinarian’s office. It read, “Kittens for adoption.” It was the first time I had noticed a sign there. As I read the sign, immediately my daughter’s persistent request for a cat came to my mind. I decided I would surprise my daughter that evening with a little kitten. I walked over to the veterinarian’s office and adopted a little calico kitten for my daughter. I took Princess home that evening and gave her to my daughter. Kelsey Ann was so surprised and filled with joy.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Cure for Oppression and Trouble

The Cure for Oppression and Trouble, by Gregory A. Johnson
by Gregory A. Johnson

At various times throughout our lives, we all find ourselves oppressed. Trouble abounds in our day. May we constantly run to the LORD, for He is our safety!

Beloved, run into the arms of our loving LORD. He will take care of you today and forever.

Scripture: “The Lord is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble” (Psalm 9:9, NLT).

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Top Ten Posts of 2015

by Gregory A. Johnson

Top Ten Posts of 2015, by Gregory A. JohnsonReaders from 97 countries read and hopefully was encouraged by what I have written and shared in 2015.

I am always humbled by the number of people who take time to read what I write. I simply share what God lays on my heart, finding that God often allows me to be transparent, writing from a life that has experienced not only joy and peace, but also pain, hardship, hurt, trials, and tribulations on my journey as I follow Christ. I pray for the Spirit of God to encourage and inspire each reader as they read each word.

Please allow me to share with you the top ten posts read in 2015:

Friday, December 18, 2015

How Can I Love My Enemies?

How Can I Love My Enemies, by Gregory A. Johnson
by Gregory A. Johnson

It's easy for me to love my wife. Becky is a great mother to our children, a hard worker, full of wisdom, abundant in faith, and loving toward me regardless of all of my faults. She has been with me through thick and thin, standing by my side, encouraging me along the way. I would die for Becky. I have no problem with that and wouldn't even have to think about it, but my enemies who have lied about me, ridiculed, and persecuted me—how could I die for them?

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Three Words That Melt the Heart

by Gregory A. Johnson

Three Words That Melt the Heart, by Gregory A. Johnson
My wife, Becky, and I have been married for over thirty-three years, and my heart still melts at three words she says to me: “I love you.” She does more than tell me that she loves me; she shows me her love for me through her actions—she is a woman of faith, full of wisdom, a hard worker, a wonderful mother to our children, a marvelous cook, and a meticulous housekeeper. I’m a blessed man.

I have three words for you today—you are loved. Jesus loves you so much that He died for you on an old, rugged cross. He desires to be your strength today and always.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Secret to Understanding the Kingdom

The Secret to Understanding the Kingdom, by Gregory A. Johnsonby Gregory A. Johnson

When Jesus walked this earth, He revealed His Kingdom to us through His words and His actions. The secret to understanding the Kingdom and living as its citizens is found in the life of Christ. Jesus and the Kingdom are the same; He is the Kingdom embodied.

Jesus gave us the first hint into what His Kingdom is all about when He preached His first sermon in His hometown of Nazareth.

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written,

Saturday, September 5, 2015

How to Get Everything You Need

by Gregory A. Johnson
How to Get Everything You Need, by Gregory A. Johnson

Food, shelter, and clothing are the basic necessities of life, and Jesus tells us not to be anxious about them. Jesus will give us all that we need as we follow Him and continue His point-of-need ministry in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Throughout our ministry, God has provided my wife, my children, and me with food, shelter, and clothing. The first church we pastored paid us fifty dollars a week. The second church we pastored paid us one hundred dollars a week. We never went hungry, homeless, or naked during those years. We obeyed God, and He miraculously provided for our needs, and still does today. I thank God for the people He sent to help us, for second-hand stores, and for my wife, who is an expert at couponing.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

He Is No Longer a Babe in a Manger

He Is No Longer a Babe in a Manger, by Gregory A. Johnson
by Gregory A. Johnson

Jesus left glory and all of its riches to come into our world and reveal His Kingdom. Theologians
refer to this emptying process that Jesus willingly went through as "kenosis." After the resurrection, the opposite of kenosis took place—Jesus was re-glorified. Jesus is now back in His original state of glory.

John, secluded on the island of Patmos, received a revelation of the re-glorified Christ. He testifies: "When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand on me, saying, 'Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades'" (Revelation 1:17-18 ESV).