Horizons Unlimited July 15, 2018 - July 23, 2018
HORIZONS UNLIMITED

Sunday July 15, 2018: A Miracle Child out of Control Judges
Monday July 16, 2018: Sons of Light, Daughters of Day
Tuesday July 17, 2018: Value in Dying to Self
Wednesday July 18, 2018: Endure--Don't Yield to Temptation
Thursday July 19, 2018: Self-Control
Friday July 20, 2018: Concern Yourself Not
Saturday July 21, 2018: Walk Worthy of the Lord
Sunday July 22, 2018: Heaven, Home of All Saints
Monday July 23, 2018: Step Out of the Boat - Shore Is Nearby

Horizons Unlimited PDF Archive


Sunday July 15, 2018
A Miracle Child out of Control Judges


Judges 16:28, NLT: Then Samson prayed to the LORD, "Sovereign LORD, remember me again. O God, please strengthen me one more time so that I may pay back the Philistines for the loss of my eyes."

Samson was a miracle baby born to a barren mother to help fulfill God's plan to destroy the enemy of His people (Judges 13:5). Though God called him, gave him a mission to fulfill, and anointed him to do supernatural feats, Samson was carnal, lustful, and weak in his flesh.

Samson had everything necessary to please God, but he appeared to be accountable to no one. Samson was a loner who thought he could do anything without the aid of advisors, an army, or his parents' wisdom.

His father had asked the Lord's angel what kind of rules should govern the boy's life and work. He was certainly raised right. But what happened? He not only ate forbidden food from the carcass of the dead lion but also gave some to his parents (Judges 14:9). This first act of deception and disobedience began a downward spiral, which deeply plummeted when he met Delilah (Judges 16:4).

This miracle baby with supernatural gifts and upright teaching did what so many do today. He failed to practice self-control. He did not know that with all his strength, he was no match for a nagging woman. He died a hero; but even in his final prayer, he was unconcerned about his misdeeds. He only wanted revenge for others' taking his eyesight.

God told me once, "It does not seem to matter what I do for My people-how much I anoint, bless, increase, and provide miracles for them-they still seem to fall in one of the three following areas: distortion, corruption, or compromise."

Samson was dedicated to God as a Nazarite from birth until death. But his life was cut short because of disobedience, evil associations, yielding to temptation, carnality, and lust.

It is not good enough to have a noble beginning or a life full of miracles and the power of God in manifestation. Will our end be a sad commentary on what we could have been if we had stayed in control? Learn from Samson's mistakes and turn from distortion, corruption, and compromise, bringing God the glory till the very end.



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Monday July 16, 2018
Sons of Light, Daughters of Day


1 Thessalonians 5:1,2, Message: I don't think, friends, that I need to deal with the question of when all this is going to happen. You know as well as I that the day of the Master's coming can't be posted on our calendars. He won't call ahead and make an appointment anymore than a burglar would.

None of us knows the exact time of Jesus' return. However, God's sons and daughters certainly should know the season because it should be spiritually discerned so that those of us who are serious about a life with Him will not be caught unaware.

Many Christians seem confused about studying to show themselves approved versus living to show themselves approved. What is the good of knowing the history and future events of the Bible while there is little or no effort to live the Bible on a daily basis? What benefit is it for us to be able to answer others' questions concerning past and future happenings while neglecting to imitate the life of Jesus and conform to His image? I believe the Spirit is showing me at this stage of my life that it is more important to study to show myself improved rather than approved. When we allow the Spirit of Christ in us to influence and direct us, our concern or interest as to His appearing will occupy very little of our thought life.

When are we going to learn and apply the principle of staying ready to go, and not getting ready? E-tickets and express check-in won't work when the Father looks over to the Son and says, "Go." Let's not sleepwalk like others, but believe the Lord to keep our eyes open and our spirits sensitive to spiritual things.

Let's listen intently for the sound of His voice telling each of us what He wants of us. I don't have to tell my legs or my arms what to do because they are a part of my body. They know what must be done and when.



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Tuesday July 17, 2018
Value in Dying to Self


Psalms 116:15, KJV: Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of His saints.

Several years ago, the Spirit had me read the verses that came before and after this verse. I heard in my spirit that this was not speaking of the physical death of God's children; rather, it was speaking of His children crucifying their flesh and keeping it under at all times.

God is not pleased when His children die and leave the earth. It is valuable in His eyes when His children die to self and kill their old desires, appetites, and passions.

Using an illustration from marriage under the Law, Paul wrote this in Romans 7:4-6 (NIV): "So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God. For when we were controlled by the sinful nature, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in our bodies, so that we bore fruit for death. But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code."

Dear heavenly Father, help me keep under my flesh because a carnal nature is never pleasing in Your eyes. I may not be able to keep the Law, but I can certainly live by the same Spirit who raised Christ from the dead. I believe that I receive my daily portion of Your grace, which is sufficient for me.



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Wednesday July 18, 2018
Endure--Don't Yield to Temptation


1 Corinthians 10:13, KJV: There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

There is a temptation designed with your name on it, but don't go there. The price is higher than you'll want to pay.

The lust of the flesh is not always sex. Sometimes it is food--just ask Eve! The lust of the eyes makes the very thing God has told you to leave alone so pleasant that you'll compromise and then justify your right to have it. The pride of life makes you pursue whatever it takes to make you a cut above others. And whatever is desirable to make you wise, apart from a daily dose of God's wisdom, usually steals your time away from prayer, worship, and the study of God's Word.

Let's get real. Most of us have not been resisting the temptations of life. Our training has been to "do it if it feels good." Oh, we quickly claim our victories concerning "the big stuff"--sexual sins, smoking, drinking, stealing, etc. But all of it is small stuff to God.

The little foxes are the ones destroying your vines. God can't trust you with the bigger plan until He is satisfied that you are in control of the "little stuff." So focus your eyes on Jesus; direct your attention to Him. He will help you win every time. That's a promise.



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Thursday July 19, 2018
Self-Control


Galatians 5:22-23, NKJV: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…

Though all of the above are fruit of the Holy Spirit in us, they will not be manifested and enjoyed by others if we fail to yield to His prompting. Another way to say it is, "These are all fruit that are released for the benefit of others as we submit to the leading of God's Holy Spirit in us. You'll know us by our fruit."

Without purposing in our hearts and requesting God's help in assisting with the harvesting of His fruit, we will not have the necessary resources to cultivate these glorious attributes. Let's look at self-control.

When we walk in the Spirit of God, He gives us what is necessary to control ourselves. God does not control us; we have to submit to His Spirit in us to be in control. All of us are capable of "a case of the uglies" without the Spirit's help in controlling how we think and what we do. The Spirit provides the power so that we can control ourselves. It is up to us to take hold of the power rather than to let loose of whatever wants to take over. We are in charge. We can choose to do right or wrong, good or evil.

The difference between the world and us is the choices we make. The world is motivated and urged to do the same things we, at times, want to do. However, we have a voice inside reminding us that we have been given power to resist rather than being negatively influenced.

I can't control you and neither can the devil. Only the individual person can control himself or herself. Even God does not control us. He will attempt to influence us; but the ultimate choice is ours. "Choose today what He decided yesterday, then walk in His benefits tomorrow." This was given to me by the Lord sometime ago. I can tell you it works every time, all the time. Self-control is my responsibility.



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Friday July 20, 2018
Concern Yourself Not


I believe the Lord is saying, "Concern yourself not with the things of this world. Have I not abundantly provided for your every need? Did not I make available to you the very desires of your heart? My child, I desire only your whole heart. The division of your heart is a stench in My nostrils. You are no longer your own. I paid a high price for you. Come unto Me often, for My wisdom is at your beck and call. I know the beginning from the end. Why waste time trying to comprehend that which I already have resolved?

"Seek Me early; seek Me late; seek Me often. My words to you are always 'yea and amen.' Inquire of me before you make a move. You, My beloved, can never make Me weary with your inquiring. That is your old nature trying to limit your accomplishments by telling you to not bother Me. But you will not listen to that old nature, for you have learned to recognize My voice.

"Commit to completing those things I have assigned for you to do. Do not doubt My will for your life. You may lack education, but never wisdom, for you have My supply. I have work for you that you know not of. I have thoughts for you that come only from above, so do not hesitate to go forth. Never wait unless I say 'halt.' The time is too short to ponder the next move. I am coming so quickly, and there is still much to be done.

Seek Me early and often, and do not concern yourself with things that have no place in My master plan for your life.

"You are loved. You are blessed. You are set apart from all the rest to do that which I have called you to do. Give Me the glory and the praise for all things, and together we will soon accomplish the task and rejoice together.

"Keep looking. I am coming soon."



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Saturday July 21, 2018
Walk Worthy of the Lord


1 Thessalonians 2:11,12, NKJV: As you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children, that you would walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.

The greatest sermon we can preach is the one that allows us to live the Gospel in front of all humankind. This is not just being in His kingdom. It also is having Him share His glory with us, which helps us to be all pleasing and faithful in every good work while we increase in the knowledge of God (Col. 1:10).

God gives us, His children, detailed commandments that must be obeyed. But, instead of a bunch of rules and regulations, His Spirit in us allows us to voluntarily live the principles of the Bible because of who we are in Christ.

Walking worthy of the Lord is without reservation or doubt, obeying what His Word teaches us, then showing our respect and appreciation by becoming His example to others. God has given us everything. The question is what are we returning to Him for His investment in us?

What He has provided for us requires that our manner of life and conversation honor Him at all times with the same quality and quantity He offers when He serves us. Unless we catch a glimpse of God's love toward His creation, we cannot understand that apart from God's grace and His affection and determination to bring us to where He originally intended for Adam to go, we would never comprehend our need to draw closer to God. It is He who makes us worthy to be considered in the same breath as our Father and Creator.

As I have said in times past, God never created us to keep Him company; He created us to run His company. We must learn the art and secret of walking worthy of His confidence in us.



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Sunday July 22, 2018
Heaven, Home of All Saints


James 4:14, NKJV: Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.

I once had to repent for some plans that I was making a year in advance.

I believed the Lord had asked me to invite a certain person to speak to us at the 25th anniversary of the church and I did. What I forgot to do was say, "If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that" (James 4:15).

Too often we set aside the truth that all of us are like vapor, the morning fog, and we forget that none of us has a guarantee that we will be here tomorrow, let alone next year. It is His will to regulate our departure or our continuance. To make plans for tomorrow is both arrogant and evil, and is considered by God boasting (James 4:16).

That kind of choice clearly is a sign we have abandoned consulting with the Lord concerning His plan for our future and are leaning to our own understanding.

Psalm 39:5 reads, "Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths and my age is as nothing before You; certainly every man at his best state is but a vapor." It grieves me when Christians become so distraught over the passing of a loved one. Death begins at birth and the only way I know to avoid death is to never be born. Since death is more sure than taxes, each of us should ask for the grace of God to live each moment and day as though it were our last.

The important thing for us to remember is to try to encourage others to believe, as with Jesus, they have a season here and a work to be done during that time and there isn't any need to stay once their task is complete.

Don't spend your life heaping up riches and not knowing by whom or how they will be spent. Keep your hope in the Lord who hears every prayer.



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Monday July 23, 2018
Step Out of the Boat - Shore Is Nearby


John 21:8, NCV: ...They were not very far from shore, only about a hundred yards..

How often have our provisions been so close, but we missed them because we would not get out of the security and comfort of our boat? After fishing in the flesh, the disciples caught nothing. But Jesus told them what to do, and the fish heard His voice and swam to get into their net! Jesus did not have to wait for their catch; He showed them that He was able to provide for them regardless. There is no indication that Jesus had anything to fish with, yet the disciples saw fish cooking over the fire once they got out of the boat.

Too many times, we fail to see what the Lord has for us because we neglect to come ashore to be with Him. Peter became so excited when he heard it was the Lord, he jumped overboard and swam to Him. He remembered that walking on water had not completely worked for him, so he did what he knew to do: swim. Once we stop dwelling on our past failures and mistakes and continue with the Lord in what we know to do, we'll reach Him. The object is Jesus and being in His Presence by whatever means works for us to achieve that goal.

Never permit your boat to get so comfortable that you miss what the Lord is saying to you. He may ask you to go fishing for a season. However, at some point, He is expecting you to get out of the boat and come ashore. How else can He show you how He wants to reward your obedience? Going fishing is a test. Shore is nearby, and the blessing is there awaiting your arrival.



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