Find God and Get a Second Birthday (Born Again!)

By Dianne Neal Matthews:

When born again as children of God, we become part of his family.

 

Image by tiverylucky / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image by tiverylucky / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Recently I celebrated my birthday. I’m certainly not the only one to celebrate that. It’s estimated that approximately eleven thousand babies are born each day in the United States alone. Estimates of the birthrate for the entire world go as high as 370,000 daily. On any given day of the year, there are thousands of people receiving cards and gifts, enjoying dinners and parties with friends, and blowing out candles on cakes.

While I annually celebrate my physical birth, I also acknowledge a much more important anniversary—my spiritual birthday. Jesus told a teacher of the law that in order to be part of God’s Kingdom, we must go through a second birth. Confused, Nicodemus asked how an old man could be born again, since he was unable to enter his mother’s womb (John 3:4). Jesus replied,

“I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” John 3:3 (NLT)

Jesus explained that this second birth is of the Spirit, not another physical birth. When we accept Jesus as our Savior and Lord, God places his Spirit within us. We are then born again as children of God, and we become part of his family. That moment in time marks the beginning of our new, eternal life and transforms us into a brand-new creation.

Everyone who has ever lived has a birthday on which he or she received the gift of life. Believers have a second, greater birthday—the day they chose to receive the gift of eternal life. So when I’m spending time with family or friends and enjoying the blessings of the day on my birthday, I’m most grateful for the gift I received on the day I was reborn!

© Dianne Neal Matthews. Dianne is a freelance writer and the author of four daily devotional books. This material is adapted from On This Day: 365 Meditations on Holidays and Historical Events. Visit Dianne at her website, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

Enjoy the beautiful imagery and song “Born Again” in this video from Third Day:

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Finding God by Faith and Not by Sight

By  Karen O’Connor:

walk by faith and not by sight

As I look back on my life, I did just the opposite of what the apostle Paul taught in the Bible.

“For we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7 New Testament.)

Finding God by faith and not by sight, took me by surprise when I committed my life to Christ at age 42, because I had lived by sight for so long. All my choices and decisions had been based on what I felt, what I noticed, what I heard and saw in the world. And I held my own point of view in high regard.

That is, until the crisis of an unwanted divorced knocked me down. I lay there as still as a stone. I had no resources, no help, no answers–until a counselor friend asked me a disturbing question. “How are you and God getting along?”

What kind of a question is that? I wondered. I hadn’t even thought about God except when I said a mere ‘thank you’ before a meal. But that question would not let go of me. It started a journey that led me to Jesus Christ––his teachings, his promises, his friendship––and to the knowledge that to walk with Christ, is to live by faith, not by sight, in marriage, in parenting, in relating to everyone I encounter, and to ask for His grace when I fail.

I started attending church, enrolled in a Bible study, and made friends with people whose faith-walk I admired. The sermons of Charles Spurgeon, one of the great Christian preachers and writers of the 19th century, led me to a deep and personal relationship with God. Check out his Sermon #677: Faith Versus Sight one of many he preached at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London.

According to the history of the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Spurgeon (19 June 1834 – 31 January 1892) began preaching in 1853, before he was 20 years old.

“Charles H. Spurgeon pastored the church for 38 years, founding a pastors’ college, an orphanage, a Christian literature society and The Sword and the Trowel magazine. Over 200 new churches were started in the Home Counties alone, and pastored by his students. His printed sermons (still published) fill 62 volumes.”

“During Charles Spurgeon’s ministry tens of thousands were converted to God under the preaching of the Word.”

He once preached to 23,654 people at once– at The Crystal Palace in London.

I hope you will take time to read his Faith Versus Sight message with so many interesting insights.

I also like this quote from author Peter De Vries:

“It takes a lot more faith to live this life without faith than with it.”

Finding God by faith, not by sight is a journey you won’t regret.

©Karen O’Connor. Karen is an author, writing mentor, and frequent contributor to the Finding God Daily blog. Visit Karen on the web at www.karenoconnor.com, on Facebook or follow on Twitter: @karenoconnor

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Find God in Scripture

By Karen O’Connor:

Bible image

A popular cliché says: “When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.”

How much better would it be if the tough went to the Bible, to find God in Scripture?

It doesn’t get any better than this:

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you” (Deut. 31:6).

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1).

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze” (Isaiah 43:2).

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid” (John 14:27).

God speaks to us in such personal and reassuring ways through Scripture. Instead of looking for a dose of daily news, how about a dose of daily Bible verses to see us through and to inspire us in all our ways?

Sign up now for a bible reading to come to your inbox each day by clicking HERE. It couldn’t be simpler than this to find God in Scripture. 

Be inspired by this YouTube video with encouragement for daily Bible reading.

©Karen O’Connor. Karen is an author, writing mentor, and frequent contributor to the Finding God Daily blog. Visit Karen on the web at www.karenoconnor.com, on Facebook or follow on Twitter: @karenoconnor

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