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Reaching Your World Archive

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Series: Luis Palau | Thanksgiving

During this Thanksgiving week on “Reaching your World with Luis Palau,” Luis focuses on heart attitudes and thankfulness. We sometimes face stressful situations at this time of year, so let’s make sure we have our hearts and minds settled in the right place. 

Adopted by God Friday, November 29, 2019

A person can spend a lot of time watching videos on the internet, but one particular kind of internet video can really make you feel good. In one of these videos, a young woman gives her father a present. After he unwraps the box, he finds some papers inside – adoption papers. The young woman explains that while he has acted as her father for many years, she would like him to officially become her father. The man breaks down in tears and grabs his daughter, hugging her tight. You can find other videos where children find out they are being adopted by their foster families, and videos where young men say they want to change their last name to match the man who fathered them in the absence of their biological father. In each of these videos, the surprised party begins to sob in gratefulness and joy. We see the creation of a new family, a family that has already been in process but now will be recognized officially.

God wants to adopt us into His family, as Ephesians 1:5 says. We have biological fathers, but He wants to be our heavenly father. He wants to give us His name, His identity, His family. Then we belong to Him, because He has chosen us. What joy comes with accepting God as our Father and being welcomed into His family! God wants to adopt everyone into His family--let’s spread the news so we can gain brothers and sisters in Christ.                 

This is Andrew Palau.

Celebrate with Gratitude Thursday, November 28, 2019

What are your holiday traditions? Do you make crafts with your kids and decorate the house? Do you take a trip to visit family? Or maybe you host everybody and spend hours preparing a special meal. I’ve got 12 grandkids so I know these traditions can be fun, building memories and helping us focus on all the blessings of life.

But sometimes, especially as adults, it’s difficult to list what we are thankful for. If you’re struggling this Thanksgiving, I want to encourage you. You don’t have to be outwardly smiling all the time to be celebrating this Thanksgiving with gratitude. I understand how that can feel. Two years ago, I was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. I was given months to live and I truly didn’t think I’d be alive today to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family here on earth this year. Some days the update from the doctor is encouraging, and some days I’m honestly amazed I wake up in the morning. But I understand that some days can be hard for you, and being thankful isn’t always easy.

A heart of gratitude means more than just saying “thank you.” It means believing God is who He says He is. Believing that He is good. That God is love. That He is on our side – protecting us, blessing us, and comforting us even on the hardest of days in this fallen world.       

This is Luis Palau.

Stressful Relationships Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Do you have a family member whose personality clashes with yours? Are you anxious about spending time with them this holiday season? Conflict in relationships is not something that should surprise us—or make us feel ashamed. 

The question is not whether conflicts will come, but how we will handle them. Prepare yourself this week as you approach any stresses or conflict during your holiday events. How will you respond when you’re insulted? When you feel unappreciated or unloved?

Proverbs 15:18 reminds us “Hot tempers cause arguments, but patience brings peace.” Continue being patient and offer grace whenever you can. Seek peace where you can by addressing any tension you have with other people. And remember that this is where God does his deepest work in our lives. In the tough times. In the hard conversations. The painful relationships. This is when the light of grace shines brightest and makes us more like Jesus.

I want to leave you with this verse from Ephesians, chapter 4 (verses 31-32). It says: “Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults, no more hateful feelings of any sort. Instead, be kind and tender-hearted to one another, and forgive one another, as God has forgiven you.”

This is Luis Palau.

Fruit of the Spirit Tuesday, November 26, 2019

At Thanksgiving, we celebrate the harvest of fruits, vegetables, and other good things that God has provided. The early American pilgrims and pioneers were very thankful for God’s goodness—and we should be too.

But did you know about the special kind of fruit we’re given as children of God? “The fruits of the Spirit” as they’re called are the characteristics of the Holy Spirit. If you’re a believer, the Spirit is living inside of you, eager to make you a better person every moment. These fruits are: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. 

We don’t often see these characteristics playing a significant role in our society today. Even though the Holy Spirit lives inside of us, it takes an active cooperation with the indwelling Holy Spirit to let these characteristics lead us in decision making and how we treat others. 

The Gospel reminds us that we can never have love, joy, peace, patience, or any fruit - apart from the Holy Spirit at work in us. God doesn’t want you to work hard to be all these things to be loved—but rather to display the love that He has freely given to you and share that love with others.

Seek the fruits of the Spirit in your life today.  You and I will reach our world as we are more like Jesus.  You will leave a legacy of love.                   

This is Luis Palau.

Life-giving Words Monday, November 25, 2019

During this Thanksgiving week and as we approach the holiday season, there’s one gift that everybody would love: a sincere compliment.  Proverbs 18:21 tells us “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” Have you ever been on the receiving end of life-giving words? Then, at other times, has something cruel or unkind been spoken to you, where the words lodged in your brain, bringing you sorrow each time you recalled them? A study by Harvard University claims it actually takes more than five positive comments to outweigh a negative comment.

In a world of so much negativity, I hope you will do all you can to bring life with your words today. I’ll never forget one of the first mentors I had who encouraged me as a teen saying to me one afternoon, “I know God has great plans for you; worldwide plans. I believe in Christ’s power in you.” His confidence in me gave me the courage to do scary things that I knew God was calling me to do.

Just recently, I wrote a book titled A Life on Fire, honoring some of the most influential people in my life—the ones who believed in me and spoke encouraging words to me that truly changed the course of my life.

You have the ability to make a big impact on somebody’s life with your words. Be an encourager today.     

This is Luis Palau.

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This Weeks Offer

Articles

Articles

Luis has many online resources available for you which can give further teaching and inspiration.  Our website is www.palau.org.  There, go to “Resources” and then “Articles.”  You will find such titles as “God’s Promises for You," and "Why I’m Excited for Heaven."

Reaching Your World: Next Week

Go Share the Gospel

Have you ever felt nervous about sharing the Gospel? This week on “Reaching Your World with Luis Palau,” Luis discusses why and how to share the Good News in our everyday lives.

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