Chosen By God’s Grace

Paul and Barnabus we’re preaching the gospel to the Gentiles.

“When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and honored the word of the Lord; and all who were appointed for eternal life believed.” Acts 14:48 (NIV)

Matthews Henry’s Commentary states the following about Acts 14:48:

Those came to Christ whom the Spirit made the gospel call effectual. It is called the faith operation of God: “having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.” Colossians 2:12 (NIV), and it is said to be wrought by the same power that raised up Christ.

God gave this grace to believe to all those among them (them meaning Paul and Barnabus), who were ordained to eternal life: “And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.” Romans 8:30 (NIV) or, as many as we’re disposed to eternal life, as many as had a concern about their eternal state and aimed to make sure of eternal life, in whom God hath treasured up that life: “And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.” 1 John 5:11 (NIV), and who is the only way to it; and it was the grace of God that wrought in them.

“Grace is the unmerited favor of God. Every good thing in this life is by God’s grace. All our accomplishments are by His grace alone. Without His grace you wouldn’t be able to breath!”

“Grace is not simply leniency when we have sinned. Grace is the enabling gift of God not to sin. Grace is power, not just pardon.” – John Piper

“Grace means that all of your mistakes now serve a purpose instead of serving shame.”

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life].” 2 Corinthians 5:17 (Amplified Bible)

If you wish to give your heart to Jesus, please click on the link below:


In † His Service, Susan Osten

Sources: Matthew Henry’s Commentary and Excerpts from Bible Reason/Grace.

Silence is Power & A True Faith Will Control the Tongue

“The wicked is snard by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble.” Proverbs 12:13-14 (KJV)

“With his mouth the godless man destroys his neighbor, But through knowledge the righteous will be delivered.” Proverbs 11:9 (KJV)

“If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.” James 1:26 (KJV)

“Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be SWIFT to HEAR, SLOW to SPEAK, SLOW to WRATH. For the wrath of a man worketh not the righteousness of God.” James 1:19-20 (KJV)

Study Notes: In James 1:19-25, James condemns, dormant, unapplied knowledge. He calls for people to listen to a message of truth and then live consistent with that message, and he offers guidelines for what that might look like. The pressure that trials create may make believers quick to react in anger; James says act differently. These verses are a key for the letter because they point to a faith that results in changed behavior.

“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” James 1:27 (KJV)

James says one’s religion is worthless if it is without fruit. James 1:26

The following quote jumped out when I read it because I spend quit a lot of time in solitude and silence. Most days, when my husband goes to work, I turn off the TV and do my housework, read my Bible, and pray in Silence and Solitude.

The quote is a follows:

“Very few of us know the secret of bathing out souls in silence. It was a secret our Lord Jesus Christ knew very well.”

A W Tozer

Following is an excerpt from Jesus’ Solitude and Silence by Bill Gaultiere:

“The priority of Jesus’ solitude and silence is everywhere in the Gospels. It’s how He began His ministry. It’s how He made important decisions. It’s how He dealt with troubling emotions like grief. It’s how He dealt with the constant demands of His ministry and CARED FOR HIS SOUL. It’s how He taught his disciples. It’s how He prepared for important ministry events. It’s how He prepared for His death on the cross.

Sometimes silence shows our power more than anything else will.

Whatever can elicit a response from you is what has power over you. That’s why bullies teas and try to rile the other kids up. If they can get the other kids mad, sad, or even fighting, the bully feels powerful because he is forcing the other kids to do what he wants.

As Jesus showed us, silence is sometimes the greatest display of power. Jesus showed His power in many ways, and one of those ways was through His silence.”

Following are some scriptures showing some of the times Jesus chose Solitude and Silence:

Matthew 12:19; Isaiah 53:7; Acts 8:32; Matthew 15:23; Matthew 26:63; Matthew 27:12; Matthew 27:14; Mark 14:61; Mark 15:5; Luke 23:9; John 19:9; John 14:30; John 19:10; Mark 3:7; Luke 6:12-13; Mark 3:13; Matthew 13:1-3; Mark 4:1

May Jesus bless each one of you who read this blog, with a revelation of this POWERFUL TRUTH about Solitude and Silence!

In † His Service, Susan Osten

Sources: The KJV Study Bible, the study notes are adapted from the Layman’s Simplified Commentary Series & Jesus’ Solitude and Silence by Bill Gaultiere

Susan Osten’s Testimony 

I was fifteen years old, when I realized that I loved God, and I wanted to serve Him. I decided to ask my dad about becoming a Nun. He told me there were many ways to serve God, and he handed me a Bible. He told me the Bible would answer all my questions about God. Some nights, I would read the Bible my dad gave to me under one of the lamp posts, near my house. 

I didn’t follow through with my desire to serve God. Instead, I succumbed to peer pressure and I began to hang around with a group of godless teenagers: thereby, I also became a godless teenager. I used drugs, disobeyed my parents, ran away from home, skipped school, etc. My life “ethically” spiraled out of control.

It wasn’t until I was nineteen years old, that things started to fall into place regarding my relationship with God. It was Spring time, and I remember, driving down the highway looking at all the beautiful flowers, while at the same time, wondering, “What could I do to feel as pretty inside, as those flowers looked outside.” I felt so dirty! After I became a Christian, I realized that “Dirty” feeling was the conviction of the Holy Spirit.

It was nighttime, and I was ironing and watching Pat Robertson, the Host of the 700 Club on TV. Pat asked a question that immediately, got my attention. He said, “Is there anyone in our audience, that has not asked Jesus Christ to come into their heart, and forgive them for there sins?” Then he turned his attention to the TV audience and asked that the same question. He then asked all those who wished to ask Jesus into their hearts, and receive forgiveness for their sins, to pray with him. I prayed, with Pat! When we were finished praying together, Pat encouraged all those who prayed, to call somebody that they knew, or to call the 700 Club, and tell the person who answers the phone, about the decision to follow Jesus Christ.

“For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:10 (NIV)

I called the 700 Club, and told the lady who answered the phone, about my decision to follow Jesus Christ. She was happy for me, and then, she asked me a question…Would  you like to receive the Holy Spirit? I asked her to, “Please send me more information about that subject.”

As the days passed by, I began to read my Bible regularly, and I learned that I needed to be baptized in water.

Water baptism is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer’s faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Savior, the believer’s death to sin, the burial of the old life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus.

I had no church affiliation, and I didn’t know what church to call, to baptize me. I decided to open the telephone book to Churches, close my eyes and point. (No one should ever do this!!) When I opened my eyes, my finger was on a church called: Full Gospel Fellowship, which happened to be just a few miles from my home. I called that church and asked the Pastor Gary Wood, to baptize me in water. He was happy to do so, and he told me when and what time, to be at the church service for the baptism. When I went into the church, the people were very friendly. I was baptized and afterwards, I decided to join the church. Not long after I joined Full Gospel Fellowship, Richard Ford and Tena Ford were given the position as pastors.

Pastors Richard
and Tena Ford

It had been several weeks, since I joined Full Gospel Fellowship Church (which is now called Family Worship Center, located in Stafford, Texas). One day after one of the church services, Tina, the wife of Richard Ford, an Elder at that time, asked me, if I would like to have a Ladies Bible Study in my home? I had a hunger to learn more about God’s Word, so I said Yes!  About a week later, we had a Ladies Bible Study, in my home. At the end of the Bible Study, Tena asked me a the following question, “Have you received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, since you believed?” I told her, no and she asked me, “Would you like to receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit?” I was a little embarrassed, because I didn’t know what to expect, so I declined.

After everyone went home, I began to think about Tina’s question. I concluded, that if God had more to offer me: I wanted it! I got down on my knees and asked God to baptize me with the Holy Spirit. God answered my prayer. I was so excited! I went to the telephone to call one of my friends and tell them the Holy Spirit was real! I picked up the receiver, and my legs buckled: I dropped the receiver and slid down the wall, to the floor.

After everyone went home, I began to think about Tina’s question. I concluded, that if God had more to offer me: I wanted it! I got down on my knees and asked God to baptize me with the Holy Spirit. God answered my prayer. I was so excited! I went to the telephone to call one of my friends and tell them the Holy Spirit was real! I picked up the receiver, and my legs buckled: I dropped the receiver and slid down the wall, to the floor.

The Baptism with the Holy Spirit is a blessing from God which causes ordinary people to become extraordinarily, effective witnesses for Jesus Christ.

“For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, LORD, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”  Acts 1:5-8 (KJV)  

By it, God equips believers today with the same power we read about in the New Testament. Since the Day of Pentecost. Please read the second chapter of Acts.

After a while, I found that many of my friends weren’t as happy for me as I thought they’d be; but that didn’t slow me down. I had more “ZEAL” than knowledge of God’s Word, and I didn’t know anything about being led by the Holy Spirit. I began to witness for Jesus, and I suffered some major bumps and bruises. Even so, “Praise God!” I was able to lead some people to Jesus.

God’s plan has been to supernaturally equip every believer, so that the ministry of Jesus Christ may continue through us.

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.”  John 14:12 (KJV) 

His ascension into Heaven: 

“And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.”  Acts 1:9 (KJV) 

It did not mean that Jesus’ ministry on earth stopped, but rather it was an essential step which released even more of His ministry. As the Head of His Church He now directs growing multitudes of Spirit-empowered men and women to carry His Gospel around the world:

 “Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.”   Luke 24:45-49 (KJV).

The Baptism with the Holy Spirit is the impartation of this necessary power so that God’s servants can carry out their calling.

“They have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony. And they did not love their lives so as to shy away from death.” Revelation 12:11 (NIV)

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:” Matthew 7:7 (KJV) 

“The LORD says, “I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help. I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for me. I said, ‘Here I am, here I am!’ to a nation that did not call on my name.”  Isaiah 65:1 (NLT)

Barnes’ Notes: God states in general that he had called another people who had not sought him, and extended the blessings of salvation to those who had been strangers to his name Isaiah 65:1. This is evidently intended to show that many of his ancient people would be rejected, and that the blessings of salvation would be extended to others, Romans 10:20. 

The blessing of salvation is being extended to you, the reader. If you haven’t met Jesus Christ, and you wish to ask Jesus to forgive your sins and ask Him into your heart, please click on the following link:

In † His Service, Susan Osten

The Great Commission!

My Mom’s Miracle

My mom passed away on April 12, 2011, at the age of 78 years old, from a rare, debilitating disease called Scleroderma.

My mom was nineteen years old when she contracted Tubercula Meningitis on the brain. My mom laid flat on her back for one year. She told me she stayed alive by eating everything she could get her hands on. When she was finally able to get out of bed, she had to learn to walk again. Thank you Jesus, for sparing my mom!

In † His Service, Susan Osten

God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the wise. 1 Corinthians 1:27

Consider for a moment just how incredible it was that God chose David to fight the giant Goliath. David was just a young boy when God called him. He was so young in age and immature in physical development that the Bible says, “And when the Philistine looked about, and saw David, he disdained him: for he was but a youth, and ruddy, and of a fair countenance” (1 Samuel 17:42). Goliath took it as a joke when he saw who had been sent to fight with him. The giant laughed when he saw whom God had chosen! First Samuel 17:43 tells us what Goliath said: “…Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.” Who would have ever dreamed that God would select a young, inexperienced boy like David to bring down this giant? It may have looked laughable in the eyes of the world, but this young boy who fearlessly faced Goliath in battle was the exact person God had chosen! With that in mind, consider what Paul says in First Corinthians 1:27: “But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty.”

In † Christian Love, Susan Osten

Source: Daily Devotionals By Renner