Roger Thrower

Inspiring Seeking Hearts to Enter the Life-Giving Presence of Jesus Christ

'Heart Thots' Posts

Father’s Affirming Love

There is a power in love. When you know that you are loved unconditionally, you not only feel safe, you feel affirmed. Affirmation leads to empowerment. The moment Jesus came up from the waters of baptism the Holy Spirit descended upon him like a dove, the heavens were opened to him, and the voice of his Father declared, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” The love that Father God had for His Son came through words affirming his pleasure in him. He spoke these words out loud in front of other people. Cool, huh! A father speaking affirming words out loud to his son in front of other people. Just so we would know how Father God felt about Jesus he said so.
Fathers that affirm their sons and daughters with loving statements empower them with a deep sense of worth. You may have heard it taught that Father God affirmed Jesus before he had done anything in ministry. Jesus had not been led into the wilderness to overcome the temptation of the devil. He had not preached or taught anyone. He had not healed any sick person or set a demonized person free. He had not performed in any regard for the affirmation he received. Father God affirmed Jesus because he loved him, not because he had accomplished anything. Yet, the source of Jesus ministry flowed from the foundation of his Father’s affirmation.
Affirming love empowers people. When you are settled on the reality that Father God loves you and you have a few people in your life that agree with him concerning your worth, you face life with a certain confidence. It is the confidence that a father gives his children. When dad says he loves you and that he is well pleased with you, well that just does it, doesn’t it? If you are a dad, be like Father God and lovingly affirm your kids.
Father God is still affirming his children today. Open your heart to him and listen. You’ll see what I mean.

Finding God’s Love Within the Pages

In the midst of leading worship with the presence of God so sweetly and powerfully flowing in and around us, I suddenly saw a picture in my mind’s eye.  I saw a gathering up of the fragments of the broken pieces of fish and each broken fragment being put into a basket.  I thought to myself, “What does this picture have to do with anything we are doing right now?”  But I know the way of the Holy Spirit with me.  I told the congregation that I had a picture in my mind of the Lord gathering up the broken fragments of fish into baskets.  Immediately the understanding came, and the next part flowed out:  “So I the Lord am gathering up the broken pieces of your life–everything that has been broken, yes, every fragment where you have felt torn apart.  I am gathering them up, because nothing you have gone through will be wasted.  To the contrary, the broken places in your life will be used to nourish others.”  Tears fell from some eyes, hope filled the atmosphere in the room, and once again God in His sovereign love and power encouraged His people.

God is doing what only He can do, restoring our deepest pains in life and then declaring that what God has restored in our lives will be used to bring restoration to someone else’s life.  Nothing is wasted when God redeems us.   In fact, God is glorified when we reveal where He has restored us.  The Holy Spirit bears witness to others’ hearts that God indeed did this and that He can help them as well.

As we “read” about Jesus as He is revealed within the pages of God’s Word, we can also ”enter” into this reality of His grace freely given to us.  The same God who declares that He will give beauty for ashes in Isaiah 61:3 reaches to heal the burned out places in your soul.  Somehow He does it.  He takes a burned out you and makes a grace-filled work of art that is beautiful to behold.  I know.  I see Him do it in those who come desiring for Him to work in their lives.  In an atmosphere of love and confidentiality, people will brave opening up their vulnerable places to God.

As you read His word, enter His presence.  Open to Jesus who is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  His love is best when resting deep within you.

Listening to God’s Voice Within the Pages

Have you ever read several books by one author? Say Jane Austin or Earnest Hemingway? Or say maybe the writings of C.S. Lewis or J.R.R. Tolkien? What I am thinking about here is this: when you read the works of certain authors you pick up their way of communicating, their writing style, their thought processes, and their approach: their voice. You get to know their heart, so to speak. If you read many of the books one auther like many have read the works of C.S. Lewis, you are in a way mentored by the mature thinking presented in the concepts, themes, and stories. It is a way of growing mentally.

The Bible is a spiritual book that was inspired by the Holy Spirit as He moved on the hearts of men of God to write in God’s behalf. When you read the Bible with a heart seeking to hear what God would say to you, His voice comes through the words to your spirit. God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. If you ask for wisdom He will give it. In fact the whole book of Proverbs is dedicated to helping the serious disciple gain a heart of wisdom.

What happens when you read the Bible daily? What happens when you desire to know God through the Word of God? What happens when you seek God for council and you have a plan to read and listen to Him so you can obey His voice? This is what happens: you gain a heart affinity with God. You become close. You rely on Him and you know that He knows you and what you need in life. You have a real relationship with God that matters to both of you. The history of God’s people becomes your history because you are grafted in to the olive tree of God’s redemptive history. You are adopted into the family of God like Ruth or Rahab. You didn’t belong and now you do; and as you mature spiritually you become a contributor to this big family by becoming like Jesus Himself.

How? By listening for His voice within the pages and obeying Him when He speaks, you will be mentored by the Lord through the thoughts, stories, history, poetry, passion, mistakes, principles, truths, and examples of those who have gone before you.

God’s Plan for Salvation

First the best news:  What God has done for us.
● John 3:16-17 –  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
● Romans 5:6 – when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
● John 1:12 – But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:

Second, the bad news:  Our condition without Him.
● Romans 5:12 – just as through one man (Adam) sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—
● Romans 3:23 –   for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
● Romans 6:23 – For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Third, the good news: What we can do to receive Him.

● Romans 10:8-10 – But what does it say? (“The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” that is, the word of faith which we preach):  that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
● Ephesians 2:8-9 – For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.
● Matthew 10:32 –   “Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven.
● 1 John 5:11-13 – And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.  He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.  These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

A prayer to receive Him and give your life to Him would be like this:
Father God, in Jesus name I come to You.  Thank You for sending Jesus to die in my place for all my wrongdoings and sins.  And Lord Jesus, because You rose again unto eternal life, I believe in my heart and confess with my mouth that You are my Lord.  I receive Your love for me and Your gift of eternal life.  Thank You for forgiving me of all my faults and failures and sins.  I give my life to You and I open to the assurance of the Holy Spirit that I am now Your child.  I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Passionate for God

People are passionate about many different things in life. In the Bible we find some people that were passionate about their relationship with God. Notice the words and actions of these men of God.
As the deer pants for the water brooks, so pants my soul for you, Oh, God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God,” sang David in a song he’d written to express his personal passion for the God of Israel.
Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me,“ declares Paul concerning his passionate pursuit of Jesus Christ.
Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of the disciples, whom Jesus loved,” states John, the Beloved, as he paints a word portrait of the Last Supper to reveal his personal passion for the person of Jesus Christ.
Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?” asked Jesus of the discouraged Peter who had failed in his commitment to Jesus. “Yes, Lord, You know that I love You,” replied Peter, who with these very words began the re-ignition of his passion for Jesus.

When we by God’s grace exit the kingdom of darkness and begin to overcome bad habits and thought patterns, we must continually connect with Jesus who gave Himself for us. We can’t just set our hearts on leaving the trouble of our sinful ways without cleaving to the person of Jesus who supplies us His pure life by His Holy Spirit dwelling within us.

David, Paul, John, and Peter believed a personal, passionate pursuit of God’s purifying presence prevents trespasses and propels us into our powerful purpose in Christ. God’s all-consuming love is our fuel for living a blessed life.

May our hearts catch the passion for the person of Jesus just like those who have gone before us!
Going for Jesus, Roger

:: Scriptures

Psalm 124:4-8

1 4 Then the waters would have overwhelmed us,
The stream would have gone over our soul;
5 Then the swollen waters
Would have gone over our soul.”
6 Blessed be the LORD,
Who has not given us as prey to their teeth.
7 Our soul has escaped as a bird from the snare of the fowlers;
The snare is broken, and we have escaped.
8 Our help is in the name of the LORD,
Who made heaven and earth.

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