Category: <span>thoughts by John Grant</span>

Think about it. Is your faith unsinkable?


By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” Hebrews 11:7

Much has been written about the sinking of the Titanic on its century anniversary. A lot has been true and some folklore. One story tells of a crewman who told a passenger upon embarkation that, “No one could sink this ship, not even God.” The liner went down on April 15, 1912, carrying 2,223 passengers. The sinking caused the death of 1,514 of them.

Then there was the documented story of Baptist preacher John Harper, which is chronicled in the book The Titanic’s Last Hero by Moody Adams.

“That Baptist minister actually ran around the deck shouting ‘Women and children and unsaved people, get aboard the lifeboats,‘” says Adams. “He even took off his life vest and gave it to a man who was not a believer in Jesus Christ. He said: ‘Here, take this. I don’t need it. I’m not going down — I’m going up!'”

Harper did not stop evangelizing to a non-believer he encountered while enduring the frigid waters of the Atlantic.

“And Harper’s last words were ‘Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.’ A few weeks later in Hamilton, Ontario, that same man said I listened to Reverend Harper’s last message and became a believer in Jesus Christ with two miles of water beneath me.”

When she set sail, there were all kinds of classes and degrees of people on board: — upper class, middle class and lower class!! — But after she had sunk, there were only two classes; — Saved and lost!!

Think about it. Is your faith unsinkable?  When your physical boat sinks, are you going up or down?

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

   The Powerful Reality by Ruth Calkin

 Guardian Angels Watching over Us

•  Salvation Explained


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I will praise the LORD according to his righteousness: and will sing praise to the name of the LORD most high.” Psalm 7:17

Recently, I was praising and thanking God for something he had done for me that very day, but He said what about last week, last month, last year? How soon do we forget?

I must plead guilty to a prayer life that is too tilted in the direction of my current prayer needs and not enough in thanks for all he has done. Just think about what God has done for us as Christians…. His righteousness and holiness, all his marvelous works, our physical bodies, His guidance and instruction for us, our salvation, the hope He has given us, the joy of being in his presence, His answer to our prayers for help and the list goes on.

These are general things applicable to all of us. But what about the things he has done specifically for us? I have been making a mental list of things God has done for me, some decades ago. He has always been there for me. While I am thankful for the things he has done for me, I am especially thankful for the things He has kept from happening, even things I very much wanted at the time, which looking back would have been an ultimate disaster.

When I was growing up, one of my favorite television shows was Father Knows Best. While it was about a family, the title has spiritual connotations. Our Heavenly Father knows best as well.

Over these past days, I have tried to examine every year of my life and think of what God did for me, even before I was saved. It has brought to mind things I had long ago forgotten and regrettable probably never thanks God for, at least not recently.

When was the last time you made a ‘thank-you’ list?

Try it today. Recall the prayers God has answered recently, the needs He has provided for, spiritual victories you have enjoyed and last but not least, the faithful character of our Lord. Then begin thanking God for each item on your list, and your faith will grow stronger.

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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FURTHER READING

•  The Supernatural Power of Praise

•  Lord, because of you….

•  Salvation Explained


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“Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad.” Proverbs 12:25 (ESV)


I enjoy being a devotional writer, a ministry I started for my Bible fellowship class nearly twenty years ago, and have continued each week since then. My mailing list has grown over the years and several publishers re-direct to their audiences in the thousands over six continents.

I am humbled with the feedback I get from people I have never met and never will, but whose lives I have impacted. One in particular, a man named Stephen in Bangalore, India writes me faithfully each week. His notes are such an encouragement to me.

Several years ago, I received a note from a man in Kenya. He said he was a new Christian and had been asked to lead the village’s weekly Bible study. He said he didn’t know what to use until he read my weekly Thoughts on Life and then used it to share with those in the village.

I am amazed that in this new world of international electronic communication that I can sit at my desk and reach the most remote places in the world for Jesus. With humility, I thank God that I can do this ministry.

My only goal is to encourage others in their faith and they in turn encourage me. Encouragement is one of the greatest powers in the world. We all need it. Sharing a kind or positive word, paying a compliment, giving a hug or a pat on the back, recognizing someone for a job well done. These are all powerful ways to boost the mental and spiritual state of those around you.

The writer of Hebrews says it well.

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)

Encouraging others is a way to stir them up to love and perform good works. That’s pretty powerful stuff especially in a world that seems geared toward tearing us down. Encouraging Someone Is easy, but powerful. It just doesn’t take much to encourage others.

How much effort is it really? Drop a note, send an email, publicly praise someone. None of these take much time, money or effort. Yet they can stir us up to love and good works.

Encourage someone today and be prepared to receive back even more. In addition to making others day, it will make you feel so good when you are in a mood of encouragement.

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•  Why Worry Yourself Sick? – by Muriel Larson

•  Suffering – Spiritual principles to meditate on during hard timese

•  Salvation Explained


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We have to live Biblically in a world or system that is intrinsically corrupt, immoral and un (or even anti) Biblical.


Sin whispers to the wicked, deep within their hearts. They have no fear of God at all. In their blind conceit, they cannot see how wicked they really are.”  Psalm 36:1-2

I have to fight it every day. You see, I don’t have a personal identity crisis. I have a sinful identity crisis. It comes as standard equipment with the human package. Even with Christ in my heart, I still have whispering sin in my head.

As living humans, we are all broken in various ways, absent Christ in our lives and even then sin doesn’t easily surrender.

Psalm 36 does a great job of taking this full circle: The wicked have no fear of God and in their blind conceit, they cannot see how wicked they are. They make no attempt to turn from evil.

The sinful man listens to himself rather than to God. He convinces himself that sin is what he wants and he orients himself to take advantage of every sinful opportunity. He has no desire nor does he make any attempt to turn from evil.

The mind plots. The will sets the desire. The emotion does not despise evil. Life, like this psalm would be hopeless if it ended here, but it doesn’t have to.

God can rescue man from sin and eagerly awaits every opportunity to do so. His position remains steadfast and he is not blown by the winds of cultural change. His love is as vast as the heavens and His faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds. All humanity can find shelter in the shadows of His wings.

Our modern culture has made sin so acceptable that it is becoming politically incorrect to speak out against some kinds of sin. We, as Christians, are drawn to examine our own hearts, lest we are swept away by the sinful culture around us.

The miracle of God’s grace is that our view of sin reveals our view of scripture and my view of scripture reveals my view of myself.

We have to live Biblically in a world or system that is intrinsically corrupt, immoral and un (or even anti) Biblical.

Only with God’s grace can we rise above that. Through Christ alone we can be overcomers. Righteousness equals Jesus Christ and nothing else.

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney.


Further Reading

•  The Powerful Reality by Ruth Calkin

•  Stepping Into a Personal Revival

•  Salvation Explained


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What are you holding onto that bogs you down and hinders you in your walk of faith?


“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”  Hebrews 12: 1-4

While looking for something I had carefully put away so that it wouldn’t get lost, I realized that I forgot where I had put it. As I went through drawers and closets, unopened in no telling how long, I was amazed at what I found, most of it filled with the unwanted and unneeded, some of it even unopened, I came to the conclusion that we were just “over stuffed” with needless stuff everywhere.

I have just finished reading my third book on the adventures of Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton’s 1914-17 expedition to Antarctica. It is fascinating. It was one of the greatest survival stories of all time. When he advertised for recruiting twenty six crew members, more than five thousand applied, notwithstanding the fact that the advertisement read, “chances of survival slim.”

Perhaps you remember the story. They sailed from Buenos Aries on the Endurance across to the Wendell Sea. Endurance became trapped in ice and was eventually crushed by the expansion of thousands of tons of ice. The crew was faced with spending the winter on the ice and then sailing lifeboats to Elephant Island and ultimately to South Georgia. It was one of the greatest tests of human survival ever and under Shackleton’s leadership, all survived.

The scene in the movie was so vivid when they salvaged what they could from the endurance and set out towing sledges across the ice. They needed everything they needed to survive. They could not afford to take anything that was not necessary for survival. Shackleton took gold coins out of his pocket and threw them in the snow, as an example for others to follow. He said that if they made it out safely, they would not need things like that and if they didn’t, they would be of no value.

There’s a spiritual parallel here. The writer of Hebrews 12 tells us: let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.

What are you holding onto that bogs you down and hinders you in your walk of faith? What ultimately meaningless “stuff” are you hoarding that holds you back in your spiritual growth? Whatever it is, get rid of it so that your life may be full and your spiritual walk unburdened with the things of this earth?

by John Grant
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Further Reading

•  Pressing the RESET button on our lives 

•   Keeping Yourself in God’s Love – even during painful times in your life

•  Salvation Explained


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Do you sometimes get irritated with the detours in your life?


Nor did I go up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before me, but right away I departed to Arabia, and then returned to Damascus.” Galatians 1:17

Recently while on a multi-state trip in my newly acquired vehicle, a notice appeared on the navigation screen advising me of a traffic jam caused by an accident ahead on my route. It asked if I wanted to be re-routed around the accident and I verbally said yes and instantly a new route screened and I was able to avoid the delay and be on my way.

At first I was irritated because the alternate route took me off the interstate highway I was on and took me through rural roads with small towns with lower speed limits, but in the end, I still saved time.

Do you sometimes get irritated with the detours in your life? Do you realize that sometimes God has a purpose?

Look at some prominent detours in the Bible. Detours, when we get off the main road, can be frustrating and time consuming. Yet in the spiritual life, God seems to allow us to be detoured. One of the longest detours of all time happened to the children of Israel in the wilderness. What should have taken them eleven days to enter the Promised Land turned into a forty-year detour in the desert.

That detour was due to their deplorable lack of faith in God’s conquering power. On the other hand, there were those who may have thought they were being detoured by God, but who later found they were on God’s perfect road of blessing all along.

Consider: 1) Moses was detoured into submission. Those forty years in the wilderness tending sheep were not a waste, but actually a training ground for tending Israel later on. The desert experience took all the trust in the arm of flesh out of Moses.

Consider: 2) Paul was detoured into learning. “I went into Arabia…then after three years I went up to Jerusalem” (Galatians 1:17,18). Those years were good for Paul, so that he might learn of Christ and be trained for service.

Consider: 3) Philip was detoured from many, to one. He went from winning multitudes, to winning one man, the Ethiopian eunuch; from a great revival to a singular witnessing experience. This story shows the Lord’s estimation of the value of one soul.

Consider: 4) Enoch and Elijah were detoured into heaven (Genesis 5:24, II Kings 2:11).

Is today the day we will experience an unexpected and seeming inconvenient and direction changing experience in our lives? If so, remember that God sometimes gives us detours for us to grow and be strengthened for work in His Kingdom.

by John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•   The Package! Dealing with Unexpected Circumstances

•   Life’s Lessons can Come from Unexpected Places

•  Salvation Explained


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“So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” 1 Peter 5:6-7 (NLT)

If you are struggling or stressed with life’s obstacles, look to scripture to feel God’s love and gain His perspective on the situation. The Bible is full of scriptures that show God’s unfathomable love for us, and discovering that His love is everlasting is the most important of them all.

The Bible tells us that His love is far greater than any human love imaginable. Nothing we do (or anyone else does to us) will ever separate us from the love of God. (Romans 8:37-39)

He loves us so much that He gave His only son, and promises, that whoever believes in Him shall have eternal life. (John 3:16)

When we were dead in our own sin, through His mercy and grace He has made us alive together with Christ. By grace we are saved. (Ephesians 2:8) While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

Not only does God love us, He also cares for us and wants to reveal Himself in the midst of all our troubles. He invites us to cast all our cares on Him. (1 Peter 5:6-7)

He is a God of mercy and grace, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. (Psalm 86:15)

No person can love or even understand the depth and breadth of God’s love, but we can accept it.

No matter what our circumstance may be or how great our sin, God’s love is always unconditional and His Power is always available to help make us more like Jesus.

Father I don’t fully understand Your love, but I freely accept it as a gift of Your grace and mercy. Thank You for loving me no matter how badly I stumble. I cast my cares on You and accept all the love You have for me. Amen.

Seek to understand and experience the love of God more deeply. Write some of the verses from today’s devotion on sticky notes. Then post them around the house in obvious places (the fridge or cupboard door, your night table, mirror, etc.) Then let the truth sink deeply into your soul each time you read the verses. God loves you so much!

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•   God Is…

•   Have You Forgiven Yourself | by Katherine Kehler

•  Salvation Explained


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Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!2 Corinthians. 5:17

The old year is gone and the new has come.

It is a blank slate. Last year is history and this year is a mystery. Who knows what the New Year will bring? God does! Perhaps your best act would be to place the right foundation on the face of the New Year in your life. That foundation is the Gospel message plain and simple.

God so loved the world He created that He gave sinful man a second chance by sending His only Son as our Savior, not only for us, but for the whole world.

  • God has a plan for our lives in this coming year and for all years to come. His plan is for us to believe in Him and have everlasting life.
  • Not only does He have plan, but, He has a provision. He sent His only son as a provision for us. We can take that to the redemption center at the foot of the cross and have everlasting life, gloriously in eternity.
  • Lastly, He has a promise. We all make and break promises, especially at this time of the year, but God’s promise of eternal life is written in blood and cannot and will not be broken. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. (John 3:17)

No other verse in the Bible so succinctly summarizes God’s relationship with humanity and the way of salvation than does John 3:16 revealing God’s plan, provision and promise. Some consider John 3:16 as the “theme verse” for the entire Bible. John 3:16 tells us of the love God has for us and the extent of that love—so great that He sacrificed His only Son on our behalf. John 3:16 teaches us that anyone who believes in Jesus Christ, God’s Son, will be saved. John 3:16 gave us the glorious hope of eternal life in heaven through the love of God and death of Jesus Christ.

There is no more powerful way to deliver this message than to let John 3:16 speak for itself. God so loved the world (you and me) that He sent His only begotten Son so that all who believe shall not perish, but have everlasting life.

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•  The Names of Jesus – A study

•  How to Spend a Day With the Lord

•  Salvation Explained


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A black hole. That’s what it seems like at times in our personal lives.


I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him. Psalm 40:1-3

A black hole. That’s what it seems like at times in our personal lives.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) defines a “Black Hole” as “A place in space where gravity pulls so much that even light cannot get out. The gravity is so strong because matter has been squeezed into a tiny space. And because no light can get out, people can’t see black holes. They are invisible.”

That’s it. That’s what life seems like at times—pulled and squeezed at every possible point, with not a bit of light anywhere, darkness all around and deep within. Even the “invisible” part of the definition fits—finding it hard many times to identify what it is causing the darkness in our lives and hearts.

David, even as King David, felt that darkness, those black holes at times enveloping his life and inner being. Running from his own mistakes, running from others and hiding in caves, wondering all too often where God was, crying out to Him and asking why God had forsaken him.

That’s it. We’ve all felt it and been there. All.

Then add the stuff going on in the nation and world around us this past year and more. And we have an even blacker hole, if such a thing is possible. No light. Squeezed tight. Pulled every which-way but what’s right. And not at all sure of the way out.

But that same David, in his better moments—where and when he sought out, leaned toward and waited patiently for God—found the light that was always there for him. Even through the black holes in his own life.

The light from the Lord who lifted him out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; and set his feet on a rock giving him a firm place to stand, putting a new song in His mouth. A hymn of praise to his God.

When David waited patiently for the Lord—when he sought the Lord first—the Lord turned to him and heard his pleas for help and guided him out of and through the black holes and darkness he faced in life.

That’s it. Facing whatever we face. Black holes and more. Squeezed tight and pulled in every direction.

‘Wait patiently for the Lord to hear our cry, and to lift us out of the slimy pit, and set our feet on a rock. And then put a new song in our mouth,’ a hymn of praise to God. Our Light. Sounds about right. Pastor Scott Whitaker

By John Grant
Used by Permission
John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•  Life Can Bring Joy out of Sorrow by Norma Becker
•  Fully Surrender to the Lord
•  Salvation Explained


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Stay spiritually fresh. Stay connected with God. Keep your spiritual batteries charged.


“…be prepared in season and out of season…” 2 Timothy 4:2

For some time, we have known they were coming, but when the first one in town opened this week across the street from my office, I just stood and stared. I am referring to an electric car recharging station. They take major credit cards and all you have to do is plug in until fully charged, however long that may take.

I have never driven an electric car, but I guess it has a charge gauge on the dash much like my car has a fuel gauge. When it gets below a quarter of a tank I know that I need to stop and fill up. The gauge is a constant reminder that if I let the tank (or now batteries) run down, I had better have some good walking shoes.

Our spiritual lives are much the same!  If we’d take time each day to re-charge our spiritual batteries by spending a few minutes with God…in His Word, in prayer…we’d worry less because we would know God is in control; our minds would be renewed with the promises of God which offers us much reassurance…especially in crisis; and when we let God order our day, our focus is on His will rather than our to-do list!

Like most, I travel with an extension cord because many hotel rooms don’t have enough outlets for all the devices I have to recharge on a daily basis and for some I even carry a spare battery to get through a sometimes heavy use day.

Should I do anything less to keep my spiritual batteries charged? God doesn’t come and go. God lasts. He’s Creator of all you can see or imagine. He doesn’t get tired out, doesn’t pause to catch his breath. He doesn’t need to get re-charged, but we do!

But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles. They run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind. God’s Word tells us to “be ready in season and out of season.” (2 Timothy 4:2) If our spiritual batteries are not kept charged, we won’t be ready when an opportunity or need comes our way.

Stay spiritually fresh. Stay connected with God. Keep your spiritual batteries charged. If only I had a spiritual charge meter to tell me when I have only one bar left like on my phone. But if I charge my phone daily, I never have to count the bars. Charge your spiritual batteries daily and you won’t have to keep track of the power bars on your spiritual screen either.
( a thought on life from John Grant )

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•  Why I need to Press the ‘Reset Button’ – confessing sin is like a reset button in our relationship with God
•  Overflowing with Life!
•  Salvation Explained


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Some are called to serve and some to support. What is your mission?


When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up–one on one side, one on the other–so that his hands remained steady till sunset.” Exodus 17:12

Amalek came and fought against Israel at Rephidim. Moses told Joshua to choose the men to fight the battle and go out and fight. He said that on the following day, he would go up on a hill with the staff of God in his hand.

So then the next day, when Moses held his hand up, Israel prevailed. When his hand went down Amalek prevailed. But after a while, Moses hands became physically exhausted, as did his whole body. Just then his attendants placed a stone under him for his to sit on and Aaron and Hur each held up a hand until the sun went down. As a result, Joshua overwhelmed Amalek.

Some are called to serve and some to support. What is your mission? Some are chosen to fight on the battlefield and some are called to stay behind and support. Leaders get tired and need support and with none at their side, the bigger mission will fail.

Like a well-staffed orchestra, no part is too significant. Everyone wants to play first part, but with no second part, there is no harmony.

When Paul was in Damascus, the Jews were out to capture and kill him. Several faithful supporting me came to his aide and placed him in a roped basket and lowered him to safety over the city walls in the darkness of night. Because of those rope holders, Paul went on to be the greatest missionary of all time.

Are you called to be a battle soldier or a rope holder? Both are essential ingredients of victory. At the end of the battle, the private in the foxhole is as important as the general in command as to who wins. Each has a part and none is more important than the other.

The important thing is not how important we are in the eyes of the world, but whether we do what we are called to do in the role in which we are called to do it.

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•  Why I need to Press the ‘Reset Button’ 
•  Fully Surrender to the Lord
•  Salvation Explained


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“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. “  Romans 12:2


There is a mighty battle going on for control of your mind. Heaven and earth intersect there and the tugs of both spheres influence your thinking. God created us with the capacity to experience foretastes of heaven, but we have to shut out the world and focus on His presence in order to experience it.

The world exerts a downward pull on our thoughts. Media bombards us with greed, lust and cynicism. We must pray for protection and discernment. We must stay in continual communication with Jesus as we walk through the wastelands of the world.

Refuse to worry, because this form of worldliness will weigh you down and block awareness of His presence. We must remain on guard, stay alert and recognize the battle being waged against our mind as we look forward to an eternity free of strife-free living reserved for us in heaven.

Paul tells us in Romans 8:6 that the mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace. 1 John 2:15,17 tells us to not love the world or anything in the world because the world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.

How are you doing in your battle? Who is winning …. the way of the world (Satan) or the way of heaven (Jesus)? Electronic communications, the media and the grip of Satan on the world around us makes this a fierce battle and all the more difficult for those not grounded in the Word of God. It is daily. It is constant, but for those of us who have professed Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we know who will win in the end.

By John Grant
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John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

Practicing the Presence of God

Prayer – Asking Specifically

•  Salvation Explained


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Have you experienced the futility of trying to produce spiritual fruit by your own efforts?


Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corinthians 5:17

The state where I live is known for producing citrus fruit. There are thousands upon thousands of acres of all kinds and varieties. While there’s incredible crop diversity, most have one thing in common: they grow on sour lemon stock.

The best way to produce good quality fruit is to grow seedlings from sour lemon stock and then attach, by budding or grafting, material from trees that are known to be good producers.

While sour lemon stock may produce hearty trees, the fruit it produces is not edible. But when a graft or bud from sweet fruit is grafted just above the surface, sweet fruit begins to blossom. The old is gone and the new has come.,

In the same way, Jesus does this when we accept Him. We become a new creation. Life takes on new meaning and we begin to blossom into the people God created us to be. The more we engraft God’s Word into our hearts, the more we grow in Christ.

Have you experienced the futility of trying to produce spiritual fruit by your own efforts? If you redirect your energies to “engraft” Scripture into your life and meditate on it day and night, God’s Word will successfully bear good fruit in your life.

Lord, I am not what I used to be, but I’m still not what You created me to be. Help me to be engrafted to You through Your Holy Spirit so I may be more like You. Amen.

By John Grant
Used by Permission
John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

Understanding more about the Holy Spirit
•  Spiritual Oxygen: Are You Getting Enough?
•  Salvation Explained


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Someone once described suffering as God’s fertilizer for spiritual growth.


If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength.” – Proverbs 24:10

Either we are in adversity, just getting over it or about to go into it, or perhaps, all three at once. Living in this world is not easy and trouble comes with it. The issue is not whether we will experience it, but how we will respond to it.

There are a number of reasons why you or I will experience adversity during our lifetimes. Some segments of the church today have been wrongly taught that adversity is a sign that God has removed His blessing. Nothing could be further from the truth.

The Scriptures clearly teach us that trials are a part of a walk with God. No man or woman who has achieved much in the kingdom has been spared some form of trial or adversity. God gives specific reasons for some of our trials. Other times the purpose is to identify with the cross of Christ. We must view adversity as God does–as a means to conform us to the image of His Son. Making us more Christ like is the ultimate goal of all of our experiences with God.

Adversity is God’s workbench where He conforms us to His image. Someone once described suffering as God’s fertilizer for spiritual growth. No matter what God does in our lives, we know that nothing happens without His foreknowledge and His planning. Sometimes we fall into the trap of thinking that God is not aware of our circumstances.

Certain calamities simply cannot be explained adequately to allow rational defense of the events. These are better left unresolved until we come before God and He can quiet our hearts.

Suffering and adversity are parts of our heritage as sons and daughters of God. They come with the territory as parts of God’s refining process for every believer. Consider every major character in the Bible, and you will see that their lives had adversity. God never said we would not suffer as Christians.

Throughout Scripture God encourages us not to put too much emphasis on the here-and-now life, but to emphasize our future life in heaven. Whatever trials we will encounter here will not compare to the glory He will reveal when we get to heaven. Earth is a mere watering hole on the way to eternity. Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him (James 1:12).

So keep looking up, no matter how bumpy your road of life gets. Things could get worse and probably will, but for those saved by Christ, eternal glory is just around the bend.

By John Grant
Used by Permission

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Further Reading

•  Life Can Bring Joy out of Sorrow by Norma Becker
•  Fully Surrender to the Lord
•  Salvation Explained

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The Jews replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?But the temple he had spoken of was his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the Scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken. John 2:20-22

Over twenty years ago, I watched it being built over a number of months and I remember attending the grand opening. It was a building not far from where I live. It has been occupied by more than one business and most recently been vacant.

On my way to the office one morning, I noticed some equipment around the building and several trucks. When I returned, later in the day, more than half the building was gone and by the next day the site where the building once stood was void of any trace of building and was a vacant parcel of property, scraped clean to the bare earth.

I pondered about how long it takes to build a building and how quickly it can be torn down. I thought of the passage of Scripture where the Jews challenged Jesus on his statement that he would tear down the Temple and rebuild it in three days – a structure that took forty-six years to build. He, of course was talking about a different kind of Temple.

I thought about how this applies to my life and recalled 1 Corinthians 6:19-20. “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”

As I contemplated that Scripture, it occurred to me about how long it takes to build up my body to be worthy and reflective of being a vessel of the Holy Spirit. It includes building character, integrity, trustworthiness and respect. It takes years to firmly ingrain those traits in a body created in sin.

But then consider how quickly our bodies can be torn down. We are tested by Satan and tempted by sin. Sometimes just one stumble can in a moment wipe out years of character building and Satan baits us when we are least expecting it and when we are most vulnerable.

We must all be careful to not stumble on sin and in an instant erase what God took years to build.

by John Grant
Used by Permission
John Grant is a former Florida State Senator and is a practicing attorney

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Further Reading

•  Random Acts of Kindness it is amazing how random acts of kindness affect those around you.
•  Encouraging Word
•  Salvation Explained

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