Glad Tidings Church
Lubbock, TX
by Pastor Jessica on May 13th, 2019

There has been nothing more beautiful in my life outside of my salvation,  than the birth of my five children.  Morning sickness and all, I would not change a thing.  Each one so beautiful and precious to my heart and precious in the eyes of God.  I had the privilege of being blessed with five children in four pregnancies (twins).  You would think that after the first 3 pregnancies,  I would have learned a thing or two about going into labor. With each of the previous pregnancies, I had been under great stress at the time of labor.   Whether it was job related or simply working hard the day before, I had related the stress to the labor.  So, the fourth pregnancy rolled around and it was 39 weeks and no sign of baby coming any time soon. 

I decided I would exercise a little more, climb the stairs at work a few more times and go on long walks, ultimately only wearing myself out!  When I finally decided to ask my doctor why I was not even dilated yet, he said, “Your body does not go into labor because of stress.  Your body will go into labor when your body is completely relaxed.  The baby will come when you are at peace.” What I had simply not recognized with the other births was that after each time of great activity and stress I had gone into complete relaxation mode.  All those years I had given credit to the stress, not recognizing that all the credit for the baby coming goes to peace!

Many of you are seeking God for answers so desperately and fervently and He WILL come through for you.  But the answer is going to be birthed in peace.  As we pray with thanksgiving, we are to be anxious for nothing.  He simply wants us to trust and believe that He is who He says He is and He will do what He says He will do.  Then, we must rest in the peace of God that only comes by faith in Him.  "Don't worry about anything;  instead, pray about everything.  Tell God what you  need, and thank him for all He has done.  Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.  His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 4:6-7, NLT  

I obeyed the doctor’s orders on a Thursday afternoon.  I went home and turned off my phone and put my feet up.  I rested, slept, laughed, relaxed, prayed, worshiped, watched my four children play,  (And in between, watched a John Wayne marathon – it happened to be the only thing on television decent to watch at the time).  By the middle of the day on Saturday, I began to have contractions.  It had not even been 48 hours and because of peace, my body went into labor.  Abigail Grace was born on Sunday evening at 6:30 PM.  Her birth was so peaceful and beautiful, that the nurses did not want to leave even though their shift changed at 6:00 PM.  The Lord even arranged the precious nursing staff who would help deliver her.  I will always remember her peaceful birth.  With tears in their eyes, the old shift nurses and the new shift nurses tended to my baby and me. 

This is just like the Lord.  He will surround you with His peace and will send all of the help you need if you will allow Him to rule.  His peace is irreplaceable.  The world cannot offer it to you.  You will never find it in a bottle.  You will never find it in another relationship.  There is no medicine, drug, or drink that can bring this kind of peace.  This peace that passes our ability to comprehend only comes from Heaven.  His peace is Divine.

by Pastor Jared on February 6th, 2019

Have you ever been in a car wreck?  Whether it was just a fender bender or not, it probably left your vehicle damaged.  It would be foolish for you to call the car company and complain about the dents when it originally came off the assembly line perfect.  The damage isn't any more their fault than mankind's imperfection would be God's fault. You see, God created man in perfection after His own image.  Everything was great, until man got into a wreck.  Sin, death and the curse entered the realm of man's authority -- this world. The condition that Adam received (not the condition he was created in) was passed down to each succeeding generation. We are born into a world that is cursed, that is dying and that is in a state of rebellion.  We inherited a separated condition from the perfect and righteous ways of God!  Man was the one who had a problem, and God in His mercy provided an answer.

God began His dealings with sinful, fallen man, through "the law" first given to Moses. This law could not fully fill the requirements of righteousness, but instead showed God's people that they could not measure up to God's standard and therefore needed a Savior!  Mankind needed an outsider that could repair what they could not.

God was the only one that could fix our problem. The broken cannot fix the broken.  Along came Jesus, bringing us Grace and saying things like..."under the law you cannot commit adultery, but I say if you even look at another woman to lust after her you have already committed adultery in your heart!"   He said, "under the law you cannot murder, but I say if you have hatred in your heart toward someone you have already committed murder!"  Then Jesus really went straight to the heart by saying, "be perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect!"  Huh?  What?  Is He kidding?  How is that even possible?  I don't need a little repair work, I need to be completely re-made!

Jesus said you must be BORN AGAIN!  My first birth brought me into sin, failure, guilt and death. My second birth IN CHRIST is a spiritual birth that re-connects me with real life, a new life, eternal life!  Now there is a new nature that resides in me, a right nature, a righteous nature from the One who is righteous. 

My first birth was in the flesh, and my second birth is in the Spirit. The New Testament writers spent a lot of time explaining the fact that believers have two natures. The flesh is at war with the spirit, but the spirit is at rest in the finished work of Jesus Christ! The Apostle Paul said in Romans 8:14, that those that are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God! He says in verse 9 that we are "not in the flesh", but in the Spirit.

Grace is a popular subject today in much of the church, and it should be!  Over the years I have heard some very confusing teaching on the subject. In Romans 6,  Paul asks a question:  "Should we continue in and be satisfied with living in sin? No," he says, "don't you understand that the sinful nature is dead and it should no longer control you?"  In other words,  Paul agreed with Jesus! 

Jesus came along and told us that we don't need more laws, but a heart change. Jesus spoke directly to the heart. When we are born again, grace changes our heart and this changes everything. You and I were so "messed up" that our only answer was a DEATH!  In Romans 6:3-7, Paul tells us that the old man and the old nature of sin is "dead" in Christ and should be buried in Christ and our new life is in the likeness of His resurrection! The best thing to do with something that is dead is to bury it!  Leave the dead past, the dead sins, the dead fears, the dead failures, the old man buried -- dead -- gone -- in the past! 

Paul said in Philippians 3:13-14, that the one thing he consistently did was forget the past and continually press forward in the Grace, Mercy, Strength and Power of God in Christ Jesus! It's time to rise up, shake off the grave clothes and get moving in the things of God!  God's Grace is sufficient! 

by Pastor Jessica on December 19th, 2018

“There is not a reinforcement which the prince of darkness can order up from the profoundest depths of his dark domain for which those who believe God’s Word are not more than a match; not a poison gas manufactured in hell which the breath of God will not dissipate; not a fiery dart which the shield of faith will not quench; not a pestilence which the precious blood boldly displayed on the lentil and door posts of our dwellings will not avert. No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper...(Isaiah 54:17).”  Healing From Heaven, Dr. Lilian B. Yeomans.

God’s Word is binding. It is irrevocable. It is resolute. Satan will challenge God’s Word in your life because he knows that if you ever fully realize the power that you have at your disposal, his strategies against you will be crushed. By having faith in God’s Word and what it says about who Christ is and who we are in Him, and the unmatchable redeeming power of the blood of Jesus, and the authority that we have in the Name of Jesus in this earthly realm — you will steadfastly be victorious!  

Faith in God‘s Word will cause you to become impregnable— unable to be captured or broken. Your life in Christ will be lived out in a fortified position and there will be nothing that the enemy can do to defeat you or destroy you.  “They that trust in the Lord shall be as Mount Zion which cannot be removed but abideth forever.”  Psalm 125:1

Take some time to read your Bible today and believe it!  Our God is our refuge and His promise is that He will never fail us.  Pray in faith according to His Word because "Whatsoever God doeth, it shall be forever!"  Ecclesiastes 3:14

by Pastor Jessica on December 18th, 2018

If you or someone you love are dealing with depression, I want you to know that THERE IS HOPE.  Your story does not have to be written with the pen of sadness on the pages of sleepless nights and days that you wish would quickly come to an end.  Your situation may not change overnight, but your emotions and state of mind can.  The Bible says that the "joy of the Lord is our strength!"  God will give you the strength that you need to overcome.  He will not fail you.  Jesus died on the cross and paid the price for our freedom -- even from depression.  Have faith today in the One who has given us power to overcome through the precious blood of His Son, Jesus Christ!  

When you are facing the struggle with depression, you do not need just any kind of hope -- you need the kind of hope that will anchor your soul.  Hope that is found in Jesus Christ is the only hope that will keep you. This kind of HOPE is the true antidote! An antidote is a substance that can counteract a form of poisoning.  Depression poisons the mind with shame, guilt, fear, sadness, loneliness, anger, frustration, and suicidal thoughts.  Jesus shed His blood so that we might be free from this kind of poison! Through the power of His blood and the Word of God, you can be free from DEPRESSION.  You must acknowledge everything that Jesus did for you on the cross and meditate on what the Word of God says about the hope He has provided for you.  Take some time today and read these scriptures out loud over your life...

​Psalm 33:20-22 We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone.
Psalm 39:7 And now, Lord, what do I wait for? My hope is in You.
Psalm 62:5 My soul, wait silently for God alone, For my expectation is from Him.
Psalm 25:3,5 Indeed, let no one who waits on You be ashamed; Let those be ashamed who deal treacherously without cause...Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; On You I wait all the day.
Psalm 33:22 Let Your mercy, O Lord, be upon us, Just as we hope in You.
Psalm 37:9 For evildoers shall be cut off; But those who wait on the Lord, They shall inherit the earth
Psalm 42:5 Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him For the help of His countenance.
Psalm 52:9 I will praise You forever, Because You have done it; And in the presence of Your saints I will wait on Your name, for it is good.
Psalm 65:5 By awesome deeds in righteousness You will answer us, O God of our salvation, You who are the confidence of all the ends of the earth, And of the far-off seas;
Psalm 71:14 But I will hope continually, And will praise You yet more and more.
Psalm 119:74 Those who fear You will be glad when they see me, Because I have hoped in Your Word.
Romans 15:13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (NKJV) I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. (NLT)

Now meditate on these scriptures and when your mind and heart want to regress into a state of sadness, say them out loud again.  Say them until they become engrafted into your heart.  YOU WILL OVERCOME!   I want to encourage you to pray this prayer with me today:

“Precious Heavenly Father, I thank you for the blood of your Son, Jesus Christ and for the cleansing, healing power that is found in His blood. My faith is in You. By the stripes of Jesus I am healed. I ask You to cleanse my mind from the poison of depression. Today, I put my hope in the Lord. You are my help and my shield. In You my heart rejoices and I trust in Your holy name. Lord let Your unfailing love surround me and take away my pain. My hope is in You alone! In Jesus’ Name, AMEN.” Psalm 33:20-22, NLT and I Peter 2:24

by Pastor Jared Baker on August 24th, 2018

Have you ever tried to get on an airplane without your personal identification?  You can't even get through the security check line without first showing proof of your identity.  You could tell the officer who you are and that you promise that is your name, but that doesn't matter to the TSA officer.  They will tell you to come back when you have a government issued I.D. with you!

​Your "Identity" is so important!  In the Roman empire during the time of Christ, it was common practice for the government to issue someone with blindness or an individual that was lame or an invalid an identification of a "legal beggar". Many times that identification was literally a "beggars coat". This coat gave them the legal right to beg for money on a daily basis at the side of the road.

There is a story of a blind man found in Mark 10:46-52.  Mark states that Bartimaeus was on the side of the road leading out of Jericho begging.  The Gospel writer says that Bartimaeus had "heard" that Jesus was passing by.  He cried out to Him..."Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me!"  Verse 49 says that Jesus stopped in His tracks!  This blind beggar that the world had kicked to the side of the road, had just gotten Jesus' attention.   Jesus was leaving Jericho on His way to Jerusalem, where in just over a week, He would be crucified and pay the price for the sins of the world!  I'm sure that Jesus had plenty to think about at this moment, but something makes Him stop and pay attention to someone crying out above the noise of the crowd.  It was Bartimaeus crying out with a loud voice, "Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me."  This shows that Bartimaeus recognized Christ's true identity!  He was calling Jesus the Messiah! 

​​This man had been given the identity of a blind beggar by the world.  This man was told by the world, "here, wear this beggars coat, this is who you are."  The government had said this is who you are and nothing will ever change!  But Jesus stopped and called for blind Bartimaeus. Verse 50 says that he "throws" the coat off.  Why would Mark even mention such a thing? I believe it is to simply show us a powerful symbol of this man's faith.  Bartimaeus was saying, "I won't need this identity anymore, I'm about to receive my sight!"  This man is brought to Jesus and Jesus asks him what HE WANTS!  He doesn't ask for money or any other temporary fix for his life.  He asks for the one thing that will change his see again!  Jesus then says that his faith has made him whole.  BARTIMAEUS WAS HEALED!  He then follows Christ from that moment on.

Do you see the beautiful picture here? I believe Bartimaeus was saying "I am throwing off this old beggars life.  I believe I am about to receive my sight!  I believe this old way of life is ending and I'm ready!  I'm not going back!  We are all born into a sin sick, cursed life of darkness, pain and suffering.  Only Jesus can free us from the bondage of sin and the curse of death itself!  Only Jesus can truly change our identity.  Bartimaeus recognized that his identity was about to change.  2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us that we are created new in Christ when we are born again.  Does your identity come from that old man of sin, doubt, fear, failure, weakness, pride and darkness?  Or does your identity come from a relationship with Christ and His Word?  

Ephesians 4:22-24 (paraphrased) says to "strip off or throw away that old man...and put on or dress up in that new man In Christ."  ​The devil and the world may want to identify you with a beggars coat, but in Christ, it's time to throw that coat off once and for all.  You have been given a new coat, a new identity.  Get in the Word of God today and dress up that new person in Christ!