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“Rooted” With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on March 3, 2019 – 7:50 am -

Billy Huddleston

Billy Huddleston

Psalm 63

My God

Nightfall has come upon the desert of Judah. David stands in the opening of his tent…a rough, battered, common tent. Not one fit for a king. He looks at how the moon reflects off the dry sand in that barren land. As he stands there, he had every right to think of how he’d been wronged, to be angry and bitter, to think how he could punish his son and get his kingdom back. Though the events of that day could easily have consumed him, he set his heart on something different…

The past faithfulness of God.

When our hearts break, when we’re lonely and soak our pillow with tears, we don’t focus on the things that are good, do we? Oftentimes, we think of the sin we’ve done, we think of how unworthy we are, how this trial has seemed to have consumed your life. But you know what? We’re going to encounter problems in our lives, but those problems shouldn’t separate us from our Lord. Why? Because He’s not caught by surprise.

In Psalm 63, David bursts forth in song in the midst of betrayal, loss and heartbreak. What does David say? He sings out, “Oh God, Youare my God!” David believed that God was his personal God – his Conqueror, Strength, Miracle Worker, Companion, Friend. Likewise, our comfort and praise can be just like David’s when we come to the place when we believe, truly believe that God is on the throne, in control and has not, nor ever, forsake us…

Trust Him.

Life changes when you have the confidence that He is your God.

 


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“Rooted” With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on February 17, 2019 – 5:17 am -

Billy Huddleston

Billy Huddleston

Riches and Poverty

Mark 10:22-31

A rich man came to Jesus seeking eternal life. There are some things that money can’t buy, and eternal life tops the list.

Eternal life is fellowship with God. A man cannot know the only true God until he forsakes every false god. This man’s money seems to have become his god, so Jesus called him to renouncethe idolatry of things in order to become a disciple. Unwilling to part with mammon, the rich man parted with Jesus and left His presence sorrowful.

Then, Jesus spoke to His followers, “How hard it will be for those who have riches to enter the Kingdom of God!” (v. 23). Peter replies, “We have left everything and followed you,” so Jesus assures him that true discipleship brings great rewards in this life and the next.

Let’s notice two things about this passage.

First, Jesus warns of riches that impoverish. Those who have riches will find it hard to enter the kingdom of God. These words caused the disciples to be amazed. The had the mistaken notion that wealth was evidence of God’s favor. God must love a man greatly to bless him so abundantly – so they reasoned.

The way of salvation which has been made by Jesus can only be entered by those who disavow their false gods – who forsake their trust in riches. If a man clings to his riches, saying no to the invitation of Christ, then his riches will impoverish and rob him of the only enduring wealth – that fellowship with God in Christ which is eternal life. Anything that would keep you from following Jesus is not worth the bargain. Riches can impoverish. The unsaved man is a pauper, whatever his bank balance!

On the other hand, Jesus speaks of a poverty that enriches. Whatever it costs to be a disciple of Jesus, the gains are far greater than the losses. What we receive is so much more than what we give.

Eternal life in the Father’s house, eternal fellowship with Jesus is the wealth that endures. There are riches that impoverish, but there is poverty that enriches. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:3).

We must renounce our trust in things, to become poor in spirit, to recognize our dependence upon the mercy of God!


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“Rooted” with Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on January 13, 2019 – 6:03 am -

Billy Huddleston

Billy Huddleston

Unbelief

Mark 6:1-6

“. . . And, He marveled because of their unbelief.”

Mark 6:6

There are two things that caused Jesus to marvel. One was faith and the other was unbelief.

Perhaps you recall the faith of the Roman army officer. The centurion displayed such faith that it moved Jesus to action. The officer’s faith was marvelous.

But todays passage is different. Jesus marvels, but it’s in response to their lack of faith. Kingdom work is hindered because of their unbelief.

Do you remember the setting?

Jesus has been about Kingdom business. He was preaching the Kingdom to the people of Galilee. As the Kingdom is proclaimed, lives are changed. Lepers are cleansed. Lame people walk. It’s exciting to watch as the power and possibility of the Kingdom is revealed!

Today, Jesus has gone to His hometown. This is the place where He was born and raised. He had played in the streets. He worked with Joseph in his carpenter shop. They knew his family and they knew him . . . He was a home. And, this was the problem. You do realize that when someone has changed your diapers, you’re always the little mess that they cleaned up. It just seems you never outgrow that. Because Jesus was ‘home’, they rejected Him. After all, He was just one of them. How dare He claim to be anything more? It’s the old story of a prophet honored by strangers by rejected own. Tragic.

Their logic was condemned by their own history. God had raised up deliverers in Israelfrom humble families and obscure places. Think about Gideon. And, what about David? Aren’t you thankful that God is not impressed by human pedigrees and wealth? He reveals Himself to the lowly and longs to use the humble to accomplish His purposes. It’s frightening to think of how many blessings we might have missed because we failed recognize the humble messenger in our own pride and arrogance!

The tragedy is this: Because of their unbelief, Jesus was unable to do any mighty works there. Stop and read that again: Because of their unbelief, Jesus was unable to do any mighty works in Nazareth. Maybe it’s better stated like this: In the absence of faith the Lord does no mighty work. His challenge to all who seek His help is whether or not we believe that He is able to do in our lives what needs to be done.

Do you believe?

He would even ask that question of those who sought His touch. We’re faced with that same question over and over on our Christian walk. And, our response – how we live – will oftentimes determine outcomes. (There’s so much that could be said here. Maybe we’ll visit the subject another time.)

Jesus response is this: According to your faith, be it unto you.

It’s easy to point out the lack of faith in Nazareth. What about us? In our hearts, in our homes, in our churches, is Jesus able to do His mighty works? I wonder, does He marvel at our faith or at our unbelief?


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“Rooted” With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on January 6, 2019 – 5:53 am -

Billy Huddleston

Billy Huddleston

The Life-Changing Word

Mark 2:2

“. . . And, He preached the word to them.”

How you ever noticed the power words? Words can build up and words can tear down. They can be used for good or they can be a tool for evil. We’ve all been victims of words. I remember as a child the old rhyme:

Sticks and stones may break my bones –

But words will never hurt me.

I’m not so sure about that . . .

Words matter. Words have caused armies to march into battle. Words have shaped the course of history. There’s no other way to say it: Words are powerful. And, when the Word speaks the word, things happen! We see that in our text today.

The healing of the paralytic is a familiar passage of scripture. Mark records this incredible event in chapter two of his gospel. We remember how friends carried this man to Jesus . . .

tore a hole in the roof . . .

​​and, lowered him down.

It’s interesting to remember what Jesus was doing while the crowd had gathered. He’s preaching the word to them. The Word is doing what He came to do (see Mark 1:38). And, things happen when the Word speaks! The paralytics life is changed forever. In fact, there were tremendous changes that to place in his life. A man that was lowered through the roof now walks – or, maybe dances – right out the front door. Jesus spoke a word of forgiveness that not only cleansed heart, but also his emotions and conscience. But nothing changed until Jesus spoke to him. It was the power of Jesus’ words that made all the difference.

So, what’s the big deal?

I thought as we begin a new year (by the way, can you believe it’s 2019?!) I would remind you of a few things that we need to remember:

Jesus still speaks today

The risen Christ, present among us by His Holy Spirit, can change life’s today. He is the Living Word, revealed through the written Word that will bring us into the resurrected Words power!

Jesus speaks words of forgiveness

There is nothing more freeing than receiving the forgiveness that only He can give. Nobody is ever too far that they cannot receive! Have you received this forgiveness today? There’s nothing more soothing, satisfying than to know that there is nothing between our souls and our Savior!

Jesus speaks words of healing

When Jesus spoke words to the paralyzed man, the words flowed through his body as a healing force. He still speaks healing words today. He can speak healing in our emotions, our relationships, our finances, and yes, our bodies.

His word, His voice is life-changing. Whatever our need, it can be found in Him. By His Spirit and through the Scriptures, Jesus is speaking today.

Are you burdened down with guilt? Receive the forgiveness that He can speak to your life today. Are you sick? Listen to Him as He speaks words of healing.

As we face a new year let’s make it our purpose to cling to His life-changing word!


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Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on November 11, 2018 – 4:16 am -

Billy Huddleston

Billy Huddleston

No Comparison!

Psalm 73:18-28

 

   

16 When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me; 17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end. 18 Surely thou didst set them in slippery places: thou castedst them down into destruction. 19 How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment! they are utterly consumed with terrors. 20 As a dream when one awaketh; so, O Lord, when thou awakest,

 thou shalt despise their image.

21 Thus my heart was grieved, and I was pricked in my reins. 22 So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee. 23 Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand. 24 Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. 25 Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. 26 My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever. 27 For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee. 28 But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, that I may declare all thy works.

  

  

          There’s no greater realization than God is enough. Outside of that understanding, one will never find true satisfaction. But, once realized, it is far more valuable than anything the world can offer.

Asaph had allowed himself to become distracted by the prosperity of the wicked people of his day. He questioned why they seemed to have more than they needed while God’s people only seemed to struggle. They were strong, powerful, wealthy, and arrogant. In the world’s economy, their good fortune seemed to have no limit. However, God’s economy is different – there is no comparison!

Only when Asaph regained this perspective was he freed from the comparison game: A game that can’t be won. Before, he was allowing others to define his worth rather than embracing who God created him to be. It was when he settled within himself that God was the singular desire of his life that he discovered true, lasting satisfaction.

It’s easy to become distracted by things that seem to be important. But remember: God’s people are not of this world. They live by a different standard. So, when invited to play the comparison game, refuse the invitation. There’s no comparison!

 

 

The world behind me, the cross before me;

No turning back, no turning back

.

I Have Decided to Follow Jesus

Anonymous

 

 

Decide to focus on Him!

 

 

 

 

 


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Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on November 4, 2018 – 5:04 am -

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

The Long Road Home:

He Knows Where You’ve Been

Exodus 13:17-18

17 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt: 18 But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Red sea: and the children of Israel went up harnessed out of the land of Egypt.

Israel had been in Egypt, at this point, for some 430 years. They had not been dragged there in chains. Rather, you’ll remember that a famine had forced their migration.

It was the story of Joseph. You remember . . . The dreamer. God had given him big dreams. But it seems he also had a big mouth. His father doting over him caused animus between he and his brothers. This ultimately would find Joseph in a pit, sold into slavery, in a palace, in prison, and finally at Pharaoh’s side. He remained true to God through it all – and, God was pleased and blessed Him. This blessing would lead to the deliverance of his brothers and family from the famine. So, they found themselves in Egypt. (That was a very quick and poor telling of the story. Maybe you’ll want to revisit it in your personal bible study time!)

Time passes, and things change. For the children of Israel, things begin to fall apart. Exodus 1:8-11 shows us how things can change. Out of fear – a pharaoh that had no loyalty to Joseph, didn’t even know of him – chose to enslave them. So, for years, for generations they are looked upon as inferior. They are no longer esteemed guests. Now they are despised, disgusting forced labor. Slaves.

Can you imagine the impact of those generations?

If you are told something enough – you begin to believe it. Whether it’s true or not, it becomes your truth. Propagandists know this. Our media knows this. I could illustrate this very simply: If you (mom and dad) tell your child repeatedly that they can’t do anything right . . . They’ll grow to believe it.

So, all those years they’re treated as inferior.

Their perspective is weakened.

Self-confidence was gone.

They had been broken.

Therefore, God would be the One to restore what the enemy had taken.

We don’t have enough time here to go through the story of Moses. However, it was all woven together to bring them out of bondage and into the promise of God. But as we said last week: When deliverance came, God didn’t take them on the shortest route.

He took them on the long road home.

Because He knew.

He knew where they had been, how they’d been affected, how they felt.

Do you realize it’s the same for us?

I know there are things that happen in our lives that we don’t understand. Some of us carry weight around that we have never told anyone. We’ve been wounded in ways that we think no one could understand. Or, even if they did it would change the way they felt about us.

I want you to know this:

God knows where you’ve been.

He knows how you’ve been affected.

He knows your greatest hurts.

And, because He’s good you can be sure that He will use all those things for your good.

But, most importantly, for His glory.

So, why not give it to Him.

Just trust Him.

He knows where you’ve been.

It doesn’t end there . . .

We’ll pick up the journey next week.

 


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Rooted with Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on October 14, 2018 – 6:15 am -

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

The Long Road Home

Exodus 13:17-18

 

17 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt: 18 But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Red sea: and the children of Israel went up harnessed out of the land of Egypt.

Ernest W. Blandly wrote the hymn, ‘Where He Leads Me I Will Follow’. It’s a song that I’ve known all my life. Or, at least as long as I can remember. You remember the refrain:

Where He leads me I will follow,

I’ll go with Him, with Him all the way!

We sing it.

But, do we mean it . . .

. . . even if it means rough waters?

. . . what if it takes me to the Garden of Gethsemane?

. . . not to mention, if it leads to dark Calvary?

. . . I’ll go with Him . . . All the way.

 

Have you noticed that following God’s plan for your life isn’t always easy? Hey, if we’re honest, life isn’t easy. And, it’s not even always fun. But, we know that God is always good, so we can trust Him while we follow Him on this journey. There’s no better illustration of this reality than when God led the children of Israel out of Egypt during the Exodus.

 

Remember, it took the Israelites 40 years to get to the Promised Land. In reality – it should’ve only taken them a few days, or a couple weeks. And then, when they get there because of their fear they didn’t enter in for another 40!

 

There is no doubt that it wasn’t God’s initial plan for it to take them that long to receive the promise. However, God did delay the plan. Not for years. But, He didn’t lead them on the shortest route. You could say that He led them on the long road home . . .

 

That’s what I want us to look at over the next few weeks.

 

To many of us, it seems as though we might be on the long road home. What I want us to understand is this:

 

The God who redeems and delivers His people,

will also guide and protect them.

We need to be reminded of this. And, as we journey with the Israelites on this road we’ll see that God chose this path:

 

Because, He knew where they had been.
He also knew what they would face
The long road home was necessary to prepare them for what was to come
And, to remind them of His constant, faithful Presence with His people

 

These are lessons we all must learn.

 

So, will you join me this month?

 

Whether you are on the long road or not . . . We all need to be reminded of God’s faithfulness on this journey.

 

Grab your bags.

 

It’s time to hit the road . . .

 

 

 


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Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on October 7, 2018 – 10:57 am -

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

What’s in Your Basket?

Mark 8:19-21

“When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand,

how many baskets full of fragments did you take up?

They said to him, “twelve” . . . So, He said to them,

“How is it you do not understand?””

 

They were there.

    When the leper was completely restored.

    When a lame man began to dance.

    When a withered hand was straightened.

    When a demoniac was set free from his chains.

    When the storm was stilled.

 

They were there.

    They had gone out and preached the Kingdom.

    They experienced the power of the Kingdom.

    They touched the sick and they were made well.

    They saw broken minds were restored.

 

They were there when five thousand people were fed with five loaves and two small fish. And, despite all the proof – they just didn’t seem to get it. With every new challenge, doubt seemed to arise.

 

Somehow, they just didn’t remember all He had done.

 

Are you facing new challenges this year?  

 

If you said, “yes,” you’re in good company.  Everyone will face something as the years go on.  But the good news is, we don’t have to let those things defeat us.  Let’s take a brief look at anotherexample from the Gospel of Mark:

 

“And when He had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, He looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to His disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided He among them all.  And they did all eat and were filled.  And they took up twelve baskets full of fragments, and of the fishes.” – Mark 6:41-43

 

The disciples had a physical basket that reminded them that God was able to do what needed to be done.  But more than that, when the physical basket was gone they would always have a figurative basket of remembrance to carry them through the rest of their days.  Whenever they began to face something that seemed impossible, they could look back on that day and remember how their Master was able to make the impossible, possible.    

In the Word of God, we are told to remember His works.  Not so we long for that former place, but to remind us that the character of God is unchanging.  If today, you’re facing the storm, an uncertain future or a bad health report, here is the question I want to ask you – What’s in your basket?

 

Don’t rush to answer that question.  

 

Carefully ponder it and write down the blessings of God on a sheet of paper because the answer to that question will give you confidence to believe that what He has done in the past, He will do again.  The Word says that Jesus is “the same yesterday, today and forever.”  That means that what He has done, He is continuing to do right now and because He is moving in this moment, we can mark it down that bigger and better things are in store for the future!

 

I want to live my life remembering my basket!

 

Do you remember? How has God been good to you?

 

What’s in your basket?

 

 

 


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Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on September 23, 2018 – 5:50 am -

Billy Huddleston

Billy Huddleston

Hear the Call…

There is a scene in the gospels where the disciples are arguing over who will be the greatest.  Unfortunately, even today we wonder, “Am I good enough? Surely, the pastors and evangelists are of more value to the Kingdom than me…”  Can I remind you what the Lord did in this situation? Let’s look at the three gospel accounts of this story and see how this scene impacted the disciples who later on wrote the gospels.

 

“And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them…” – Matthew 18:2

Remember, Matthew is the one writing this scene – Matthew – the tax collector.  In the Jewish culture of that day, a tax collector was hated. (Even more so than today!)  He was employed by the enemy and considered the lowest of the low. Matthew would have been on the same level as murderers and rapists. You can easily imagine that someone like Matthew would not have been welcome to learn from a rabbi or enter a synagogue.

 

But Jesus stopped before him and said, “You, follow Me.”

 

The one who was not welcome, Jesus called.

 

“And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them: and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them…” – Mark 9:36

 

Jesus took the child and embraced him.  Can I remind you that Mark was a quitter?  (In Acts, Mark was with Paul and Barnabas, but walked away from the ministry.)  Maybe, when Mark was writing his gospel and came to this scene, he remembered his restoration to the ministry and how Jesus will even put His arms around a quitter. He shows us that we are embraced by our Father and held in His arms.

 

“And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a child, and set him by him…” – Luke 9:47

Being beside someone in the Bible is a symbol of favor and friendship.  It’s a place of purpose. You are somebody. You have a purpose by His side.  Luke was an outsider who wrote his gospel to outsiders. What we see in this object lesson is this: the one who was once on the outside is now on the inside.  Luke, a gentile, was an outsider no more.
Friends, when other people see no purpose or hope in you, Jesus has called you.  He has called you to Himself. To all the rejected like Matthew, hear the call; to all the quitters like Mark, experience His embrace; to those who feel like you don’t belong, as Luke once did, come in by His side. This is what the Kingdom is about – if you are tired and weary, come to the truth and find relief!

 


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“Rooted” With Billy Huddleston

Written by scoopsnews on September 9, 2018 – 4:53 am -

 

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Rooted With Billy Huddleston

Everything I Need

Psalm 63:1

O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;”

Psalm 63 will always be a very special passage to me. It was during one of the most difficult times in my life that God brought this scripture to me. I’ll give you a brief background.

 

It was December 2005. You could say that I was on top of the world. I was 33 years old and everything seemed to be going my way. God was blessing, and I was excited. But, while I was on the mountain top looking ahead someone snuck up behind me and yanked the rug of my world right out from under my feet.

 

I was devastated.

I was mad.

Mad at people.

Mad at circumstances.

Mad at God.

 

I actually wanted to quit – even tried to quit. But, God refused to quit me. (I’m so thankful that’s the kind of God we have!)

 

Then I heard the words of a preacher: God, Youare MY God!

 

It’s important to remember that Psalm 63 was authored by King David. Actually, at the time he penned these words he wasn’t the king. Instead of living in the palace, he was dwelling in the desert. No longer dining at the palatial table, he scavenged whilst on the run. Rather than sleeping in the kingly featherbed, now his bed was sand and his pillow a stone. He was actually running from a son that wanted him dead. This was a son he had shown mercy. And, now this is what he gets in return.

 

So, when we find David singing these words, he’s in a cave. Listening for the steps of an enemy that wanted him dead. Betrayed and broken by his own blood.

 

Isn’t it odd that he isn’t singing the blues?

Or, isn’t it amazing that he isn’t cursing his circumstance or even his God?

 

Instead, these are his words:

God, You are my God!

 

That’s simply incredible.

And, it’s beautiful.

 

It’s beauty is found in that even though he is overthrown, on the run, and likely soon to face his death . . . He still acknowledges that God is everything he needs. He’s not seeking his position, power, or revenge. Instead, in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water, he’s seeking God. He knows everything he needs is found in Him. And, oddly, this brings him satisfaction.

 

Can I ask you this: Do you realize everything you need is found in Him?

 

So often I’m guilty of being consumed by the things of life. I mean – we live in a real world, with real problems, that bring real worries. (Can I be that honest?)

 

When we realize He is everything we need, then we can be satisfied. Even, dare I say, if we find ourselves in the desert. God is just that good. And, that satisfying.

 

I pray that you’re living in that reality.

 

I know I want to.

 


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