Archive for the ‘Life Changing Experience’ Category

July 4th, 2013

Freedom in Christ

“When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, Lazarus, come out!’ The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, ‘Take off the grave clothes and let him go.’” John 11:43-44 (NIV)

Death could not prevent Jesus from bringing forth life even to Lazarus, who had been dead four days. As the stench of death permeated the graveyard, Jesus called Lazarus by name to come forth from the dead. As Lazarus came out of the tomb, Jesus commanded them to take the graves clothes off and to let him go.

What is keeping you from walking in the freedom Christ provides? What kind of grave clothes have kept you bound? Release those things which prevent you from walking in the fullness of God’s provision. Let go of those thoughts and attitudes that inhibit the flow of the Holy Spirit in your life. Jesus has paid full price for your freedom. Jesus has called you forth from the dead.

  • “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient.” Eph. 2:1-2 (NIV)
  • “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36 (NIV)

Jesus left heaven and came to earth to dwell among us and ultimately give His life in death upon the cross so that we could know and experience true life. Jesus has removed the obstacles and provided the only way to salvation. Jesus is the way.

Take the grave clothes off and walk in the grace God provides.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, July 4th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Freedom, Lazarus, Life Changing Experience.
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July 4th, 2011

Freedom in Christ

“When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, Lazarus, come out!’ The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, ‘Take off the grave clothes and let him go.’” John 11:43-44 (NIV)

Death could not prevent Jesus from bringing forth life even to Lazarus, who had been dead four days. As the stench of death permeated the graveyard, Jesus called Lazarus by name to come forth from the dead. As Lazarus came out of the tomb, Jesus commanded them to take the graves clothes off and to let him go.

What is keeping you from walking in the freedom Christ provides? What kind of grave clothes have kept you bound? Release those things which prevent you from walking in the fullness of God’s provision. Let go of those thoughts and attitudes that inhibit the flow of the Holy Spirit in your life. Jesus has paid full price for your freedom. Jesus has called you forth from the dead.

  • “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient.” Eph 2:1-2 (NIV)
  • “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36 (NIV)

Jesus left heaven and came to earth to dwell among us and ultimately give His life in death upon the cross so that we could know and experience true life. Jesus has removed the obstacles and provided the only way to salvation. Jesus is the way.

Take the grave clothes off and walk in the grace God provides.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, July 4th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Freedom, Lazarus, Life Changing Experience.
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July 29th, 2009

The Potter’s Wheel

“So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.” Jer 18:3-4 (NIV)

The safest place for you to be is in the center of God’s will. The most dangerous place for you to be is in the center of God’s will. When you are living in the center of God’s will, you experience His provision and protection. However, you are the greatest threat to Satan when you are living in the center of God’s will. When you think about it, being on Satan’s radar is an indication of being a threat to his kingdom. You cannot walk in the center of God’s will unopposed.

One of my Sunday School teachers who flew an A-10 fighter jet in the Air Force used to say, “The closer you get to the enemy, the greater the conflict.” Motion causes friction. When you are living to please God, be ready for that spiritual motion to cause friction and spiritual warfare.

Jeremiah, known as the weeping prophet, experienced the painful reality of being on the potter’s wheel. God placed Jeremiah on the potter’s wheel to demonstrate His loving and corrective touch. God demonstrated the value He places on purity, holiness, and full surrender. God expects that of every generation and every nation.

Don’t resist those seasons of being placed on the potter’s wheel. Remember that God is the Potter and you are the clay. God tenderly and lovingly molds you and shapes you for His glory. God removes the impediments in your life that restrict His flow through you. Be still! Rest! Give God access to every area of your life. Allow God to shape you for His eternal significance.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
(This devotional was originally posted in ’07 or ’08. I’m taking a break from writing for a season of personal renewal.)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, July 29th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Jeremiah, Life Changing Experience, Surrender.
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July 28th, 2009

Moses’ Identity

“But Moses said to God, ‘Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?’” Ex 3:11 (NIV)

Who am I? Why am I here? These two basic questions are innate in every human being. We long to know who we are and we strive to discover why we are placed on this planet called earth. Our security is proportionate to our understanding of our identity.

God allowed Moses to experience forty years in the palace and then forty years in the desert. God wanted Moses to learn some things about his personal identity through a desert experience that he could not learn in the palace. God was preparing Moses for the purpose of delivering the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. The burning bush encounter was a life changing experience for Moses. The encounter enabled Moses to come to know God in a personal way. God revealed His holiness to Moses and then unveiled His plan for Moses to embrace.

As you can imagine, Moses could not visualize himself as the deliverer of the children of Israel. They had been slaves for over 400 years. Moses began making excuses and tried to deny his usefulness to God. Moses began to focus on what he lacked and missed the reality of God’s ability to do the extraordinary through ordinary people.

Have you ever doubted your usefulness to God? Have you ever tried to convince God that you are not fit for His plan? God is not impressed with our abilities or our inabilities. God is not limited by our limitations. Are you willing to yield to God’s control and allow Him to have His way in your life? God is willing to take you through a desert experience to prepare you for His assignment.   

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
(This devotional was originally posted in ’07 or ’08. I’m taking a break from writing for a season of personal renewal.)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Burning Bush, Life Changing Experience, Moses.
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March 3rd, 2008

Life Changing Experience (7)

“From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the LORD his God.” Jonah 2:1 (NIV)

If you spent three days and three nights inside a great fish that God provided, you would probably place that in the category of a life changing experience. Your entire life would be marked by that one experience with God. You would never be the same. Your view of God and your reverence for God would be catapulted to a new level.

  • “The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head.” Jonah 2:5 (NIV)
  • “To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you brought my life up from the pit, O LORD my God.” Jonah 2:6 (NIV)

Can you imagine Jonah, with seaweed wrapped around his head, praying to God from inside this large fish that God provided? I wonder if Jonah was kneeling, standing, floating, or treading water while he was praying. It clearly illustrates that God is willing to go to extreme measures to rescue us from ourselves and from our sin.

You don’t have to wait for God to bring you to a place of desperation to call out to Him in prayer. You have the perpetual invitation to nurture your love relationship with God in moment by moment prayer and surrender. Remove the seaweed that tends to cling to your mind and embrace the opportunity to commune with the Creator of the universe. Your life changing experience can continue as you faithfully seek God’s face in prayer.

Whether you are in the tumultuous waters within the large fish called life or on the tranquil dry ground of daily life, pray to our Living God. God loves you and His heart beats for you. You are the apple of His eye! 

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, March 3rd, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Jonah, Life Changing Experience, Prayer.
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March 2nd, 2008

Life Changing Experience (6)

“So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.” Jer 18:3-4 (NIV)

The safest place for you to be is in the center of God’s will. The most dangerous place for you to be is in the center of God’s will. When you are living in the center of God’s will, you experience His provision and protection. However, you are the greatest threat to Satan when you are living in the center of God’s will. When you think about it, being on Satan’s radar is an indication of being a threat to his kingdom. You cannot walk in the center of God’s will unopposed.

One of my Sunday School teachers who flew an A-10 fighter jet in the Air Force used to say, “The closer you get to the enemy, the greater the conflict.” Motion causes friction. When you are living to please God, be ready for that spiritual motion to cause friction and spiritual warfare.

Jeremiah, known as the weeping prophet, experienced the painful reality of being on the potter’s wheel. God placed Jeremiah on the potter’s wheel to demonstrate His loving and corrective touch. God demonstrated the value He places on purity, holiness, and full surrender. God expects that of every generation and every nation.

Don’t resist those seasons of being placed on the potter’s wheel. Remember that God is the Potter and you are the clay. God tenderly and lovingly molds you and shapes you for His glory. God removes the impediments in your life that restrict His flow through you. Be still! Rest! Give God access to every area of your life. Allow God to shape you for His eternal significance.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, March 2nd, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Jeremiah, Life Changing Experience, Surrender.
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March 1st, 2008

Life Changing Experience (5)

“So the king gave the order, and they brought Daniel and threw him into the lions’ den. The king said to Daniel, ‘May your God, whom you serve continually, rescue you!’” Dan 6:16 (NIV)

Daniel had a track record of faithfulness to God. His loyalty to God was unwavering. After the king signed a decree forbidding Daniel to pray to God, Daniel allowed his devotion to God to supersede his devotion to the king. Daniel was not willing to disobey God in order to obey the king. Instead, Daniel honored God at the expense of the king’s retribution. Daniel paid a hefty price for his obedience. He was thrown into the lions’ den.

  • “At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, ‘Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?’” Dan 6:19-20 (NIV)
  • “Daniel answered, ‘O king, live forever! My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, O king.’” Dan 6:21-22 (NIV)

Your devotion and faithfulness to God may not ever lead you to be thrown into a literal lions’ den. However, your lions’ den may simply be having others misunderstand you or criticize you for your devotion to God. Your family members may not support you in your walk with God. Your co-workers or neighbors may not fully understand your commitment to serving God. Your lions’ den may be when your peers fail to comprehend your level of loyalty to God.

Serve continually! Trust God completely! God can shut the mouths of the lions. God can redeem the hurt you endure. Allow God to use you to make an impact for His glory for every generation. Be comforted by the fact that God is all-knowing and nothing escapes His attention. God knows right where you are and He knows exactly what you need to accomplish His plan. 

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, March 1st, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Daniel, Faithfulness, Life Changing Experience, Loyalty.
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February 29th, 2008

Life Changing Experience (4)

“Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, ‘O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.’” Dan 3:16-18 (NIV)

Has your faith ever been tested? Have you ever been in an environment that provided you with an opportunity to make a bold stand for the Lord? Maybe your home is a place where your faith is put to the test. Maybe your work environment has been a difficult place for you to express your faith. Swimming upstream is always a challenge. Whenever you decide to go in the opposite direction of the cultural current, you will face resistance and opposition.

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, in the midst of impending death if they chose not to abide by the king’s command, were willing to obey God at all costs. Instead of bowing to the golden image erected by king Nebuchadnezzar, they chose to honor God even if it meant death. They demonstrated their belief in God’s ability to save them from the blazing furnace. They went a step further by declaring that even if God did not deliver them that they would not worship the image of gold.

Do you have that kind of “but even if God does not” faith? Are you willing to obey God in the face of opposition and in the face of being misunderstood by your family or peers? Even if God does not deliver you from your difficult circumstances, are you willing to obey Him and honor Him?

The good news is that God did deliver Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They would not bow, they would not bend, they would not budge, and they would not burn! God rescued them through the blazing furnace. God allowed them to go through the fire unharmed. Now that’s a life changing experience!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, February 29th, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Abednego, Boldness, Faith, Life Changing Experience, Meshach, Obedience, Shadrach.
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February 28th, 2008

Life Changing Experience (3)

“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’” Isaiah 6:8 (NIV)

Isaiah had a life changing experience. He looked up and saw the Lord in all of His holiness. Isaiah looked inward and recognized his own sinfulness in light of God’s holiness. Isaiah then looked outward and detected the sinful condition of others. In this life changing experience, Isaiah heard God’s call and responded with instant obedience. Isaiah said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Will you make an impact upon every generation? Are you willing to allow God to call you to a new level of living? God’s grace always matches His assignment for your life. Where God guides He always provides. There is never a better moment than now to obey God instantly and make yourself totally available for His use. God can do more in you and through you in the next six months than all the previous years of your life combined.

God values the work He does in you more than the work He does through you. Before God used Isaiah to make an eternal impact, God had to do an internal work in Isaiah’s life. The internal work always impacts the eternal work. Don’t bypass what God wants to do in you. Isaiah came face to face with the holiness of God in worship. Isaiah’s worship led to a personal assessment of his morality and then the morality of those around him. After God did this great work in Isaiah, He invited Isaiah to join His world redemptive activity.

You have a chance to make an eternal impact for every generation. Are you available? Look upward! Look inward! Look outward!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, February 28th, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Availability, Isaiah, Life Changing Experience, Obedience.
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February 27th, 2008

Life Changing Experience (2)

“But Moses said to God, ‘Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?’” Ex 3:11 (NIV)

Who am I? Why am I here? These two basic questions are innate in every human being. We long to know who we are and we strive to discover why we are placed on this planet called earth. Our security is proportionate to our understanding of our identity.

God allowed Moses to experience forty years in the palace and then forty years in the desert. God wanted Moses to learn some things about his personal identity through a desert experience that he could not learn in the palace. God was preparing Moses for the purpose of delivering the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. The burning bush encounter was a life changing experience for Moses. The encounter enabled Moses to come to know God in a personal way. God revealed His holiness to Moses and then unveiled His plan for Moses to embrace.

As you can imagine, Moses could not visualize himself as the deliverer of the children of Israel. They had been slaves for over 400 years. Moses began making excuses and tried to deny his usefulness to God. Moses began to focus on what he lacked and missed the reality of God’s ability to do the extraordinary through ordinary people.

Have you ever doubted your usefulness to God? Have you ever tried to convince God that you are not fit for His plan? God is not impressed with our abilities or our inabilities. God is not limited by our limitations. Are you willing to yield to God’s control and allow Him to have His way in your life? God is willing to take you through a desert experience to prepare you for His assignment.   

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, February 27th, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Burning Bush, Life Changing Experience, Moses.
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