OFF THE MAP

Following Jesus wherever He may lead…


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Rick Botelho – Finished Well

SCRIPTURE: But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.” (Acts 20:24 NLT)

OBSERVATION: Paul was a man of purpose & passion. He knew that the course God was leading him on was one of great trials & yet he encouraged himself by the meaning of his life. Paul knew that Jesus had called him to communicate the good news of the gospel. Paul had encountered Jesus while leading the efforts to destroy Christianity. Jesus literally showed up & changed his life in an instant, giving Saul a new name, Paul, to communicate Gods word to people. Now Paul was passing the baton to the church elders acknowledging the beginning of the last lap in his race of life. He was laser-focused to finish well!

APPLICATION:My friend & brother in Christ, Rick Botelho, passed away early Sunday morning. I received a phone call from his wife Racie, that he was ready to go home. Cancer had spread & he knew it was his time to finish this race & begin eternity in heaven. While I was finishing speaking my message @ church, Jennifer had taken a picture on her cell phone & sent it to Racie sending our love & support. Seconds later Racie Called back and told Jennifer the news that Rick had passed away hours earlier. Rick had finished his race and finished well.

It’s difficult to see a friend go. Tears & sadness swell up…but soon rises up the reality that Heaven is for real & we will see our loved ones again when we too cross our finish line. This week is emotional for me. I’ve been thinking through the chapters of my life in such a way that I can say in confidence that I’m living my life as I’ve been created to do. Just like Paul, Rick & I have received the call to be bible communicators. Rick finished the race as a husband, father, pastor & friend. Well done my friend…

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, may You encourage many through Rick’s legacy. May You continue to bless many through the life that Rick lived for You. </

Rick giving the toast @ our vow renewal in Hawaii. He always knew how to make us laugh!

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“Stand the Pressure?”

SCRIPTURE: “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. I am the L ord your God. So do not act like the people in Egypt, where you used to live, or like the people of Canaan, where I am taking you. You must not imitate their way of life. You must obey all my regulations and be careful to obey my decrees, for I am the L ord your God. If you obey my decrees and my regulations, you will find life through them. I am The Lord . (Leviticus 18:2-5 NLT)

OBSERVATION: On the way to the promised land, God warned His people to no act like Egypt nor Canaan. Their past & their future did not depend on culture. Their future & hope depended on following wholeheartedly after their God.

APPLICATION: So many rules were given to the Hebrews as they were roaming the dessert roads on the way to the promised land. No one expected this journey to take 40 years. But it took an entire generation to finally submit to Gods ways. And in so doing preparing a people to withstand the pressures of society.

My past & present is not subject to anything nor anyone, but I can find myself being an assimilator if I don’t have clarity on who I a, & where I’m going. One of the marks of a mature believer is to be able to be in the world yet not become like the world. The pressure must be greater within me than the outside pressures…otherwise I will implode like a submarine that has gone too deep in the ocean!

PRAYER: Lord thank You for Your word lighting a way for me to live. I want my life to be a foundation for legacy. I want the Robison family to live for You boldly with people instead of apart from them. May Your presence become even greater within me today from spending time with You in your word, so I may withstand the pressures that come my way. </

http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=FkhBPF4yfkI&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DFkhBPF4yfkI

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“Trust even in your Trials?”

SCRIPTURE: And behold, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter’s side and woke him up, saying, “Get up quickly.” And his chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” And he went out and continued to follow, and he did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. When they had passed the first and second guard, they came to the iron gate that leads into the city, which opened for them by itself; and they went out and went along one street, and immediately the angel departed from him. When Peter came to himself, he said, “Now I know for sure that the Lord has sent forth His angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.” (Acts 12:7-11)

OBSERVATION: In jail with no way out, God sent an angle to rescue. But Peter thought he was dreaming from the time the angel woke him up until he realized he was standing on the street a free man! This wasn’t just a good dream, it was a miracle!

APPLICATION:Sometimes when all is lost or impossible…God makes his move so that no one would question that God was the reason for the breakthrough. When people are expecting my demise and then see a miracle provision, things happen. People either get really angry or ecstatic at seeing God show up. I want my life to be like Peter’s…one that gives God the glory at dead end roads. With God all things are possible. He is faithful to make a way where there is none.

This morning we just experienced the answer to our dead end road. We have a financial deadline by tomorrow with no way to make it on our own. We saw God provide after a morning of prayer & journaling, Jesus made a way where there was none! Once again, The Robisons have Jesus to thank for providing for our needs. Because the answer came only an hour ago…I can truly say that it’s worth it to trust Jesus in your trials.

PRAYER: Jesus, may You be my source of peace in the midst of my challenges. I choose to trust You in the midst of situations that seem hopeless. May my simple faith of trusting You at Your word be enough to position me to see miracles in my life. Trusting You today.</

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