What Masters You … Defines You!

In Luke 11:21-22 Jesus tells a story about a strong man who is fully armed and able to guard his house. But then something happens… someone stronger comes, overpowers him, and disarms him. The passage here portrays how the powers of this world (Satan, the world system, and our own flesh) are domineering… but Jesus Christ comes and overpowers them all. What power are you letting influence and run your life? It is obvious when a person gives themselves to vices and sins contrary to God, life becomes debilitated and destitute. But there is another harmful influence in the world that seeks to master us. It is when we become preoccupied with seemingly good things, like achievements, gaining status, financial security, relationships…but to the point that they become the ultimate of life, and not God. When we become obsessed with them, they eventually enslave us and become our master. But not a kind and merciful one, rather one that robs our life of joy, peace and contentment. What or who are you allowing to master your life? (PMC)  Jesus also said, “If the son (Jesus) makes you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36); “I came that you may have life, and have it abundantly” (John 10:10); “Continue in My Word…you will know the Truth and the Truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32).

This thought was written by Paul M. Curtas, General Director of FCAP.

The Motive of God’s Love

There is no greater motive in this world than life expressed and lived out of love. God did just that when He sent Jesus Christ into this world to become our Savior. The true message of Christmas can only be enjoyed when the motive of God’s love is understood. God did not love us because He needed someone to love or someone to love Him.  He loved us because He simply chose to do so, and for that reason we can freely receive this as a true gift, instead of receiving it by making a deal with God.  The healthiest relationships in this world are those who live life having received love that has been freely offered and freely received. This Christmas let’s celebrate God’s greatest gift of all… His love shone to us by sending His Son Jesus.  PMC
I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people;
for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” 

(Luke 2:10-11)
This thought was written by Paul M. Curtas, General Director of FCAP.

The Continual Search…

It is amazing that through technology we can explore the world and gain knowledge about people, places and events instantly. It makes people feel smarter! But has it made us wiser in our dealings with one another and in our decisions? People are exploring the world literally or virtually online in order to find answers to solve their problems and with hopes they will define themselves better. In Acts 17:22-31, the Apostle Paul was engaged in talking with philosophers (wisdom searchers) at a place in Athens called Mars Hill. This place had a panoramic view that looked down on a sizable courtyard where hundreds of statues and idols were situated. These figures represented most of the world’s ideas and answers of that day. However, there was one pedestal with an inscription that read,  “To An Unknown God,” just in case they missed one. Paul took the opportunity to focus on the one they did not know about. He told them, the God who made the world and everything in it, is the Creator and Lord and He is not far from you. Actually, He is right before you, and you live and exist in Him. And though you are ignorant of Him… you should seek Him (v.27). The continual search for answers and knowledge today, like in ancient times, has not satisfied us as humans or changed us for the better. This will only happen when our search ends as we humble ourselves to our Creator. Seek Him! PMC  “Seek the LORD while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near. (Isaiah 55:6)

This thought was written by Paul M. Curtas, General Director of FCAP.

Acknowledging the Giver

(Due to a technical error within our web site, we were unable to post this thought as intended last week … and we did not want you to miss it.  The message certainly remains applicable as we prepare our hearts for Christmas and to begin a New Year.)
What are you thankful for?” Responses from almost everyone who is asked this question contain objects that we have received, but we cannot only be thankful for things. Most of those things are fine in and of themselves.  For example, I am indeed thankful for my family, my job, my home, and my health. We would never diminish the fact that we enjoy those things that bring us great pleasure while here on earth. But perhaps the more important question would be, “Who am I thankful to?” Here the psalmist raises our awareness to the proper reply … that it is “to the LORD” we give thanks, and to the reason why … He is good, and His loving kindness is everlasting. This reply moves us from the physical realm into the supernatural realm, and identifies characteristics of God that are eternal. And so we become even more thankful as we acknowledge the One who is the Giver.  This Thanksgiving remember to be thankful for everything, but especially for the attributes of God that lead us to repentance.  TCF

“Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, For His loving kindness is everlasting.  Psalm 136:1

 

This thought was written by Tim Files, Aircraft Systems Analyst with Delta Air Lines.  Tim also serves on our FCAP Board of Directors.

Always Employed by God

Recently I spoke at two of our FCAP groups in Europe. In attendance at one of the groups was a lady who has been very involved in FCAP over the years and served on the leadership team. Now she is retired from the airline industry. I had made a comment during my message about God’s view of our being employed… Whether we are actively employed by a company, unemployed, between jobs, or retired, with God we are always employed by HIM. She came up and told me how God has now opened new doors and is involving her in unique opportunities within her area. It started out one day when she said her coffee no longer tasted good to her. She decided to go up to the local corner café close to her apartment building. She met some people there and entered into casual conversations with them. So she decided to go back on a regular basis. Now she is a part of that “café culture” with regular people that eat there. They not only know her but also, through these ongoing conversations, doors are naturally opening up to talk with them about her faith in God. Ministry is not complicated when we are willing to make friends with people and engage in normal conversations with them. This is part of being employed by God. PMC Consider: “And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.(Philippians 1:6)

This article was written by Paul M. Curtas, General Director of FCAP.

In the Interest of Others

Could your co-workers be getting the impression that you really are not interested in them until they somehow agree with what you believe? A good friend once told me that he saw no real opportunities to share his faith with his co-workers.  I asked him to describe such a conversation when he tried to do so.  He explained that often times during these talks controversial subjects would come up, then he would let the other person know about his Christian views on the subject. Most of these conversations would turn into an argument to the point where they could no longer talk to one another. I explained that his approach was drawing an invisible line between himself and his co-worker. He was communicating to his colleague that before he would take a real interest in him, he must first agree with his views. Jesus tells us to have compassion for people, “When He saw the crowds, He had compassion for them because they were harassed and helpless…” (Matthew 9:36).  Do you tend to draw such lines between yourself and your co-workers? Why not erase them, by first finding out about them and taking interest in their needs! (PMC)

This thought was written by Paul M. Curtas, General Director of FCAP.