Author: Dr. Stacy Rinehart

Stacy is the Founder of MentorLink International - a network of mentors, leaders and partner ministries with a passion to train, mentor and disciple the next generation of Christ-centered leaders.

Knowing and Reflecting Love

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This week I have been reading in 1 John. The verse below makes understanding and reflecting Jesus’ love very simple in concept.

“By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.” (1 John 3:16)

But living out this verse, truly laying down our lives for the brothers, is more than a concept. It is costly and it varies from culture to culture and person to person.

Re-read this verse and take a few moments to think about it. Pray and ask the Lord for ideas as to what this might mean for you. Then do what you and the Lord think is right to serve someone or a group.

May each of us reflect the heart and example of Jesus who demonstrated love by laying down His life for us.

Maranatha,
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Evidence of Abiding

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The Apostle John introduces us to the mandate of abiding (or remaining) in a state of fellowship with Jesus (John 15). This is a major emphasis of John’s writings.

I have long been captivated by his emphasis and find myself more focused on this as I get older.

John says this, “whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.” (1 John 2:6).

To say, “I want to walk as Jesus walked,” is not arrogance or is it unattainable. Jesus asks us to be like Him, to walk like Him. He wouldn’t ask us to do this if it was not possible.

The reality is that we cannot do this in the power of the flesh. It is not attainable by human wisdom nor by intellectual or physical capacities. It is only attainable in the power of the Holy Spirit which indwells those who walk by faith in Jesus.

Though it is a much bigger discussion, 1 John provides evidence of abiding in Jesus compared to not abiding in Jesus. For now, we are just looking at this verse (1 John 2:6). The question is, “Am I walking like Jesus did?”

Take a moment and reflect on this verse. What does the Spirit bring to mind as you ponder how Jesus lived? What might He want you to repent of so that you might walk more like Jesus?

May each of us be, lead, treat people and walk more like Jesus.

Maranatha,
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A Life of Faith

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This past week I spent a few days with some ministry leaders I’ve known for over 25 years. We worked with each other at various times over the years but regardless of our ministry affiliations, we’ve kept in touch.

While together for several days, each of us had about two hours to share what was happening in our lives, our families, our health, our ministries and some of our trials. This in-depth sharing allowed us to put out many of the real issues we face.

No two of us were alike in what we shared or what we face in our lives, ministries or families. There are many difficult things shared but what challenged me was that each of these men are attempting to live a life of faith to honor our Lord.

Major health issues, family crisis, physical limitations and capacity to minister, unexpected closed doors for ministry, and many more things were shared. I stand amazed at how each man shared how he was believing God in the midst of these issues.

One man shared that he was motivated by this verse: “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” (1 Cor. 15:58)

Hebrews says it this way, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Heb 11:1) “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” Heb 11:6)

To me, the issue for each of us is summarized with this question: How am I believing God for what is happening in my life?

Take a few moments to ponder some of the thoughts mentioned above. Pray about what the Lord brings to your mind.

Maranatha
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Be Humble

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King Josiah heard words of calamity for Judah due to the continual pattern of Israel’s rebellion and rejection of the Lord. Josiah responded in great repentance and humility. Here’s what the Lord said to Josiah.

“Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: Regarding the words that you have heard, because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before God when you heard his words against this place and its inhabitants, and you have humbled yourself before me and have torn your clothes and wept before me, I also have heard you, declares the LORD.” (2 Chron 34:26-27)

Then Peter brought these words to mind. “Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” (1 Pt. 5:5)

These and other passages provide a strong and clear mandate for our focus on and esteem of being humble. How do we do that?

Take a moment and reflect on these passages and ask the Lord to reveal how you have been proud. Ask the Lord what He wants you to do.

Maranatha
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