Tag Archives: Max Lucado

Max Lucado – One Step at a Time

 

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Arthur Hays Sulzberger was the publisher of the New York Times during the second World War. Because of the world conflict, he found it almost impossible to sleep. He was never able to set aside worries from his mind until he adopted as his motto these five words… “one step enough for me.” He took the words from the old hymn, “Lead Kindly Light.”

“Lead, kindly Light. . .

Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see

The distant scene; one step enough for me.”

Friend, God isn’t going to let you see the distant scene either, so you might as well quit looking for it. God promises a lamp to our feet but not a crystal ball into the future. We don’t need to know what will happen tomorrow. We only need to know that Hebrews 4:16 promises that “we will find grace to help us when we need it!”

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Max Lucado -Trust God to Lead

 

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Worrying is one job you cannot farm out—but you can overcome it! And there’s no better place to begin than Psalm 23:2.  “He leads me beside the still waters,”  David declares. He leads me! God isn’t behind me, yelling, Go! He’s ahead of me bidding, Come! He’s in front, clearing the path and cutting the brush. Standing next to the rocks He warns watch your step there.

Isn’t this what God gave the children of Israel? He promised to supply them with manna each day, but He told them to collect only one day’s supply at a time. Matthew 6:34 says to give your entire attention to what God is doing right now and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes. God is leading you– so leave tomorrow’s problems until tomorrow.

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Max Lucado – Give Up Your Bag of Burdens

 

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Worry is the burlap bag of burdens.  It’s overflowing with “whaddifs” and “howells.” Whaddif after all my dieting, I find that lettuce is fattening and chocolate isn’t?  Howell we pay our baby’s tuition?”  Whaddifs and howells…the burlap bag of worry. Cumbersome. Chunky. Unattractive. Scratchy.  Irritating to carry and impossible to give away!

No one wants your worries.  The truth is, you don’t want them either. No one has to remind you of the high cost of anxiety, but I will anyway. Worry divides the mind.  It splits our energy between today’s priorities and tomorrow’s problems.  The result is half-minded living!

Hebrews 4:16 encourages us to “boldly approach the throne of our gracious God, where we may receive mercy and, in His grace, find timely help.”  God’s help is timely!  God will do the right thing at the right time.  And what a difference that makes!

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Max Lucado – Remember the Sabbath

 

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When God gave the Ten Commandments, He needed only five English words to condemn adultery; four to denounce thievery and murder.  But when he came to the topic of rest?  Listen to this:

“Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath Day of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work; you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your servants, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day…” (Exodus 20:8-11).

Wow!  One word after another… but still we object. We offer up one reason after another. We don’t like to rest. Please repeat these words after me, “It is not my job to run the world.”  In the long run we will do more by doing less!

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Max Lucado – Sleeping Trouble

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Millions of Americans have trouble sleeping!  You may be one of them. Only one other living creature has as much trouble resting as we do.  They are woolly, simpleminded, and slow…sheep. Sheep can’t sleep!  For sheep to sleep, everything must be just right. No predators. No tension in the flock.  Sheep need help.  They need a shepherd to lead them and help them lie down in green pastures. Without a shepherd, they cannot rest.

Without a shepherd, neither can we!  Psalm 23:2 says, “He, (the Shepherd) makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.”  Who’s the active one?  Who’s in charge? The Shepherd!  With our eyes on the Shepherd, we’ll get some sleep. Isaiah 26:3 reminds us of the promise,  “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You.”

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Max Lucado – Heaven, A Perfect World

 

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Try this. Imagine a perfect world. Whatever that means to you. Imagine it. Does that mean peace? Then envision absolute tranquility. Does a perfect world imply joy? Then create your highest happiness. Will a perfect world have love? Ponder a place where love has no bounds. Whatever heaven means to you, imagine it. Get it firmly fixed in your mind. Delight in it. Dream about it. Long for it.

And then smile as the Father reminds you from the apostle Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 2:9, “No one has ever imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.” No one has come close. No one. Think of all the songs about heaven. All the artists’ portrayals. All the lessons preached, poems written and chapters drafted. When it comes to describing heaven, we are all happy failures!

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Max Lucado – God’s Love is Never Failing

 

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God will not let you go. The big news of the Bible is not that you love God but that God loves you! He tattooed your name on the palm of his hand. His thoughts of you outnumber the sand on the shore. You never leave his mind, escape his sight, or flee his thoughts.

You need not win his love. You already have it. He sees the worst of you and loves you still. Your sins of tomorrow and failings of the future will not surprise him; he sees them now. Every day and deed of your life has passed before his eyes and been calculated in his decision. He knows you better than you know you and has reached this verdict: he loves you still! No discovery will disillusion him. No rebellion will dissuade him. He loves you with an everlasting love. God’s love—never failing. Never ending.

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Max Lucado – Secret of Forgiveness

 

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You will never forgive anyone more than God has already forgiven you. Is it still hard to consider the thought of forgiving the one who hurt you? If so, go one more time to the room. Watch Jesus as he goes from disciple to disciple. Can you see him? Can you hear the water splash? Can you hear him shuffle on the floor to the next person? Keep that image.

John 13:12 says, “When he had finished washing their feet. . .” Please note; Jesus finished washing their feet. That means he left no one out. Why is that important? Because that means he washed the feet of Judas. Jesus washed the feet of his betrayer. That’s not to say it was easy for Jesus. That’s not to say it’s easy for you. But that is to say, God will never call you to do what he hasn’t already done!

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Max Lucado – My Favorite Christmas Card

 

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Christmas cards. Punctuated promises! On this special day, can I share words from my favorite Christmas cards?

“He became like us, so we could become like Him.”

“Angels still sing, and the star still beckons.”

“God has given a Son to us. His name will be Wonderful Counselor, Powerful God, Prince of Peace.” “He became like us, so we could become like Him.” (Isaiah 9:6)

And my favorite:

“If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent an educator.

If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist.

If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist.

But since our greatest need was forgiveness, God sent us a Savior.”

Merry Christmas everybody!

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Max Lucado – More Than a Christmas Story

 

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The virgin birth is more, much more than a Christmas story. It’s a story of how close Christ will come to you! The first stop on His itinerary was a womb. Where will God go to touch the world?

Look deep within Mary for an answer. Better still—look deep within yourself. “Christ in you, the hope of glory!” the Scriptures say in Colossians 1:27. Christ grew in Mary until He had to come out. Christ will grow in you until the same occurs. He will come out in your speech, in your actions, in your decisions. Every place you live will be a Bethlehem. And every day you live will be a Christmas. Deliver Christ into the world…your world.

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Max Lucado – An Unlikely King

 

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In Bethlehem, the human being who best understood who God was and what He was doing, was a teenage girl in a smelly stable. As Mary looked into the face of the baby, her son, her Lord. His majesty—she couldn’t take her eyes off Him. Somehow Mary knew she was holding God. So this is He.

And she remembered the words of the angel when he said, “His kingdom will never end!” He looked like anything but a King. His cry, though strong and healthy, was still the helpless and piercing cry of a baby. Majesty in the midst of the mundane. Holiness in the filth of sheep manure and sweat. Divinity entering the world on the floor of a stable, through the womb of a teenager and in the presence of a carpenter. God came near! And Luke 1:33 says, “His kingdom will never end!” May you be a part of it.

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Max Lucado – Jesus Makes Room

 

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Some of the saddest words on earth are we don’t have room for you.  Jesus knew the sounds of those words. He was still in Mary’s womb when the innkeeper said, “We don’t have room for you.” And when He hung on the cross, wasn’t the message one of utter rejection? We don’t have room for you in this world.

Today Jesus is given the same treatment. He goes from heart to heart, asking if He might enter. Every so often, He’s welcomed. Someone throws open the door of his or her heart and invites Him to stay. And to that person Jesus gives this great promise, “In my Father’s house are many rooms…” (John 14:2). We make room for Him in our hearts. And Jesus makes room for us in His house!

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Max Lucado – Joy is a Sacred Delight

 

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The Scripture says, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor that you through His poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9).

No man had more reason to be miserable than Jesus—yet no one was more joyful! He was ridiculed. Those who didn’t ridicule Him wanted favors. He was accused of a crime he had never committed. Witnesses were hired to lie. They crucified him. He left as He came—penniless.

He should have been miserable and bitter but He wasn’t. He was joyful! He possessed a joy that possessed Him. I call it a sacred delight. Sacred because it’s not of the earth, delight because it is just that…it is the joy of God. And it is within reach—in the person of Jesus. He offers it to you, my friend– a sacred delight!

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Max Lucado – When Jesus Calls Your Name

 

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John 1:14 says, “The Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness.” He lived among us. He donned the costliest of robes, a human body. He became a friend of the sinner and a brother of the poor. He touched their sores and felt their tears and paid for their mistakes. And to all of us frightened ones, He shared the same message, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me…I will come again and receive you to Myself” (John 14:1).

And how do we respond? Some pretend He doesn’t exist. Others hear Him, but don’t believe Him. But then, a few decide to give it a try. And when He calls your name, be ready. Look up. He will reach down and take you home…when Christ comes!

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Max Lucado – His Love Covers All Things

 

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Would you do what Jesus did? He exchanged the worship of angels for the company of killers. If you were God, would you? I wouldn’t, but Christ did! Jesus humbled Himself. He went from commanding angels to sleeping in the straw. Why? Because that is what love does. It puts the loved before itself. Your place in heaven was more important to Him than His place in heaven, so He gave up His so you could have yours.

It’s time to let His love cover all things in your life. Every promise broken, every cross word, and harsh word. His love covers all things. Let it! Do it for His sake. For the peace of your heart. And do it for their sake. For the people in your life. Let His love fall on you so yours can fall on them.

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Max Lucado – The Only Name

 

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Son of God, the Lamb of God, the Resurrection and the Life, Alpha and Omega. Phrases that stretch the boundaries of human language in an effort to capture the uncapturable, the grandeur of God. They always fall short. Hearing them is somewhat like hearing a Salvation Army Christmas band on the street corner playing Handel’s Messiah.

No names do God justice. But there is one name– Jesus.  A name so typical, if He were here today, his name might be John or Bob or Jim. He was touchable, approachable, reachable. “Just call me Jesus,” you can almost hear Him say. Those who walked with Him remembered Him not with a title or designation, but with a name—Jesus! It’s a beautiful name and a powerful name. The day is coming when at the name of Jesus every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord!

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Max Lucado – Too Busy to See Him

 

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One’s imagination is kindled thinking about the conversation of the innkeeper and his family. Did anyone mention the arrival of the young couple the night before? Did anyone ask about the pregnancy of the girl on the donkey? The innkeeper and his family were so busy. The day was upon them. The day’s bread had to be made. The morning’s chores had to be done. There was too much to do to imagine that the impossible had occurred. God had entered the world as a baby.

Meanwhile the city hummed. Merchants were unaware that God had visited their planet. The innkeeper would never believe that he’d just sent God out into the cold. Those who missed His Majesty’s arrival—missed it not because of evil acts or malice; no, they missed it because they simply weren’t looking. Not much has changed in the last two thousand years, has it?

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Max Lucado – Linger Near the Manger

 

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Christianity was born in one big heavenly interruption. Just ask the Bethlehem shepherds! They had no expectations of excitement. These are sheep they’re watching. We count sheep to go to sleep!

Shepherds, however, treasured the predictable. This was the night shift. Any excitement was bad excitement—wolves, lions, poachers. Just because they wanted a calm night, didn’t mean they would get it. Luke  says, “Then an angel of the Lord stood before them. The glory of the Lord shining around them, and they became very frightened.” We always assume the worst before we look for the best. Good thing the shepherds lingered. Otherwise they might have missed the second verse. “Today your Savior was born in the town of David. He is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:9-11).

I hope you’ll do what the shepherds did—linger near the manger!

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Max Lucado – God Comes to the Common

 

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There’s one word that describes the night Jesus came—ordinary. It was an ordinary night with ordinary sheep and ordinary shepherds. And were it not for a God who loves to hook an “extra” on the front of the ordinary, the night would have gone unnoticed. But God dances amidst the common and that night He did a waltz. And the night was ordinary no more!

The announcement went first to the shepherds. They didn’t ask God if He was sure He knew what He was doing. Theologians would have consulted their commentaries. The elite would have looked to see if anyone was watching. The successful would have first looked to their calendars. But the angels went to the shepherds. Men who didn’t know enough to tell God that messiahs aren’t found sleeping in a feed trough. God comes to the common—because His most powerful tools are the simplest!

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Max Lucado – Search the Night for a Light

 

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On the night when Jesus was born, I wonder if Joseph prayed, Father, this all seems so. . .bizarre. The angel you sent? Any chance you could send another?

You’ve stood where Joseph stood. Each of us knows what it’s like to search the night for a light. Not outside a stable, but perhaps outside an emergency room or on the manicured grass of a cemetery. We’ve asked our questions. We’ve wondered why God does what he does.

If you’re asking what Joseph asked, let me urge you to do what Joseph did. Obey. He didn’t let his confusion disrupt his obedience. What about you? You have a choice: to obey or disobey. Because Joseph obeyed, God used him to change the world. Can He do the same with you? Will you be that kind of person? Will you serve…even when you don’t understand?

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