Grace Creates

I recently learned an interesting fact regarding the history of the Omega Seamaster collection. The Seamaster and Seamaster Planet Oceans that we know today are hardy tool watches suitable for diving, James Bond, and overall feeling like high-function instruments that is made really well. You'd think these pieces started out as serious dive watches. That isn't the case actually. When the first Seamaster watches came out, Omega had other pieces in its collection that were more focused on sport. The Seamaster was meant to be a fashionable watch that one could wear up in the Hamptons while playing with their kids and not worry if it got splashed on. It was meant to be a luxury watch from day one. Overtime the Seamaster became an icon and important watch www.attrinity.com for Omega - especially as the brand continued to focus on a range of important high-intensity activities from racing to diving, and everything else where sturdy and reliable watches were needed (not to mention space travel). Flash-forward to now and we have an incredibly wide range of Seamaster watches, and its higher-end cousin the Seamaster Planet Ocean. For review I am checking out two 2011 Seamaster Planet Ocean Co-Axial Chronometer watches which well represent where the collection and brand are at today. In short the Seamaster Planet Ocean Co-Axial Chronometer of today comes in over 20 references, is available in 42mm wide or 45.5mm wide cases, and is available with blue or black dials with various color differences. Inside is an in-house made Omega movement, and it is a comfortable beauty on the wrist. The "Co-Axial Chronometer" part of the watch name replica omega Seamaster separates these Planet Ocean watches from others that do not contain the Omega produced caliber 8500 movements. The other new Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean watches with in-house made movements are the Seamaster Planet Ocean Co-Axial Chronometer Chronograph watches that contain Omega's caliber 9300 automatic chronograph movements. Those are excellent pieces, with fantastic movements, but I personally like my dive watches three-handed. For a super chrono, Omega has the Speedmaster which now also comes with the 9300 movement. I got to visit Omega and see the caliber 8500 movements being produced. Debuted in 2007, these large diameter movements are made for big watches and are amazing instruments that come from one of the most sophisticated timepiece movement assembly lines ever created. The need for such a production line is due to the fact that Omega must (relatively speaking) mass produce these - but with a very high quality output. They use a very cool automated assembly line that combines mostly human labor with robots that help with precision tasks. It takes about a full day to assemble and test just one 8500 movement. The movements are then sent to COSC for Chronometer testing, which takes another three weeks.

A Leader Who Serves or a Servant Who Leads

Posted on: May 23rd, 2013 by Jon Walker | Tags: ,

“But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:32 NIV)

When Jesus tells Peter he’s prayed for him, he explains this specific prayer was because “Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat” (Luke 22:31 NIV).

Now, to me, it begs the question: Lord, did you have to say “yes”?

There may be days when you wonder if God is letting Satan sift you. But, if that is true, we can choose to believe God is still in control and that his presence inside us is greater than the one who is in the world (1 John 4:4).

A sifting brings glory to God, such as when Job still praised his maker, even when everything seemed lost and even his wife was telling him to give up on God.

A sifting also probes your weaknesses, revealing where you’re still thinking, “I can.” A good swift sift will push you to “I can’t, but God can.”

In allowing you to be sifted, God is scraping away all the distraction and things that might hinder you from fulfilling your purpose.

The way that Jesus tells Peter about the sifting has always held a special meaning to me. Jesus didn’t just say, “Get ready for a whirlwind of hurt! I know you’re going to let me down.”

Instead, Jesus points to the future: Peter would survive the sifting. He would return humbled, but stronger, with the purpose of strengthening his brothers. In a sense, “When you turn back from your turning back, you’ll be a servant who leads.”

Thoughts:

What is the difference between a leader who serves and a servant who leads?
Discover how God can work through the worst of circumstances in Jon Walker’s new book, “Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.” Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another ‘feel good’ Christian story, this book shows how God works through the worst of circumstances, including disease, divorce, and financial downfall.

Author: Jon Walker

Jon Walker is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and a contributing editor at pastors.com. © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. Used by permission.

Truth: Sailing on God’s Spirit-Wind

Posted on: May 22nd, 2013 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , ,

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us. Ephesians 3:20 (NIV)

In faith, I know this to be true:

God wants me to succeed in my walk of faith.

He shaped me exactly how I need to be in order to succeed at my purpose in life, and he’s placed the Holy Spirit within me to guarantee I succeed.

His power works within me to do immeasurably more than I can ever ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20 NIV). He planned me to succeed at my purpose, created me to succeed at my purpose, and is now going before and coming behind me as I fulfill my purpose (Ephesians 2:10; Psalm 139:5).

In my frustration, I may see his plans as evil, but they’re actually plans full of “hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV). He is not a thief come to “steal and kill and destroy”; he’s come to give me life, a life full and complete and with purpose (John 10:10 NIV). His plan is to “make my joy complete” (1 John 1:4 NIV); his joy within me coming full cycle, completing the connection between me and him.

God enlightens the eyes of my heart so that I can see the hope to which he’s called me, “the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints” (Ephesians 1:18 NIV).

In God’s grace, I can open my faith sails, and he will blow me to his destination through his mighty Spirit-wind.

 

Discover how God can work through the worst of circumstances in Jon Walker’s new book, “Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.” Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another ‘feel good’ Christian story, this book shows how God works through the worst of circumstances, including disease, divorce, and financial downfall.

Author: Jon Walker

Jon Walker is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and a contributing editor at pastors.com. © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. Used by permission.

You are a channel of God’s love and grace

Posted on: November 28th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , ,

“May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” (2 Corinthians 13:14 NIV)

In faith, I know these things to be true:

  • God is full of love and grace, and he fills me with his love and grace.
  • God’s work within me is to clear a channel for his love and grace to flow through me into the lives of anyone and everyone I meet.
  • I may not be there yet, but I am “confident of this, that he who began a good work in [me] will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6 NIV).
  • And I know “God is able to make all grace abound [in me], so that in all things at all times, having all that [I] need, [I] will abound in every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8 NIV).
  • He will make my joy complete because I no longer live in darkness, but I now live in the truth and have fellowship with God (1 John 1:4; 1 John 1:6).
  • Through the “Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,” I am, at all times, filled with grace, mercy, and peace (2 Corinthians 13:14 NIV).
  • This is what I believe to be true and I will walk accordingly, allowing God to do his work in me from the inside out.

Who can benefit from God’s love and grace through you?

Pray this today: “Father, please do your good work in my life. I believe; help my unbelief.”

 

Praise for Breakfast with Bonhoeffer

“Powerful and painfully honest, Jon Walker’s storytelling is pitch perfect. Tempered with truth and humor, it is a poignant reminder that God’s providence does not always come wrapped in the packaging we expect. It is a melodious song of a fragile human being who learns to sing and trust in spite of anxiety and circumstances.”. Review by Kathy Chapman Sharp, author of Life’s Too Short to Miss the Big Picture for Women.

This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Jon Walker

Jon Walker is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and a contributing editor at pastors.com. © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. Used by permission.

This week stop trying to win arguments

Posted on: November 19th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , , , , , ,

“I beg you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to stop arguing among yourselves. Let there be real harmony so that there won’t be splits in the church. I plead with you to be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.” (1 Corinthians 1:10 LB)

Stop trying to win arguments.

Instead, make it your goal to love those who disagree with you. Go for the love, not the win. Jesus tells us love will always win; he guaranteed that when he walked out of the tomb.

When you find yourself in an argument with someone during holiday family visits (not saying that will happen), use these biblical guidelines for getting along:

Let mercy guide your response (Proverbs 3:3–6). In a conflict, most of us say we only want what’s fair, but God’s approach isn’t about being fair. It’s about grace and mercy (Romans 5:8).

Let God determine the truth (2 Corinthians 13:8). The truth is not determined by your thoughts or feelings (1 John 4:1) or the opinions of others. Truth is what God says it is; he is the sole authority for interpreting any situation (2 Corinthians 10:5).

The Bible says we shouldn’t rely on our own understanding (Proverbs 3:5), that what appears to be right to us may very well be wrong (Proverbs 14:12).

Look for God’s presence (Matthew 28:20). Satan wants us to believe we’re in the battle alone. Follow the example of the young shepherd boy, David, who believed God was in the fight and that the battle belonged to the Lord (1 Samuel 17:47).

Look for the conflict’s true source (Ephesians 6:12). According to God’s Word, we’re really not fighting other people; our real enemy is Satan and his “unseen spiritual forces of wickedness.”

Lay down human weapons (2 Corinthians 10:4–5). When we try to meet our own needs, working independently of God, we tend to use what the Apostle Paul called weapons of the flesh. These include: manipulation, gossip, slander, ridicule, threats, blame, nagging, deception, and silence. When we use them, we end up in an “evil for evil” cycle, and that’s like trying to fight a skunk with “stink” — everybody loses!

Learn to use spiritual weapons (2 Corinthians 10:4). The Bible tells us that prayer is a powerful spiritual weapon. After we put on the whole armor of God, we’re to “pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests” (Ephesians 6:18 NIV).

 

Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer: “Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another ‘feel good’ Christian story”.

This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Jon Walker

Jon Walker is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and a contributing editor at pastors.com. © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. Used by permission.

God covers your faults with his perfect love

Posted on: November 5th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , , , , ,

The Word became a human being and, full of grace and truth, lived among us. We saw his glory, the glory which he received as the Father’s only Son. John 1:14 (TEV)

The love of God is intimate and personal. He came up-close in Christ, and that means we cannot hide our imperfections and faults from him. He knows about them anyway.

This model from God means we need to love each other intimately and personally, looking past the faults and weaknesses of one another, seeing the handiwork of God in each one of us, knowing that we also have weaknesses and faults but that God is active in our lives, too.

When we know and believe that God is determined to love us no matter what, we can stop being concerned about our faults and conform to Christ instead of our fears (Romans 12:2). When we don’t believe that God loves us no matter what, we try to put on masks that make us look perfect in order to hide our faults. When we try to hide behind masks, we undermine God’s plan that we live together in transparent, loving communities, such as small groups.

The reality is, God’s love is perfect, and he wants to cover our faults with Jesus Christ.

God goes beyond merely diagnosing our problems or judging our faults (Psalm 103:10); instead, he steps forward to address the areas of our lives that are broken:

  • Into our emptiness, he brings fullness and completion (Colossians 2:9-10).
  • Into our deficit, he brings supply (Philippians 4:19).
  • Into our death, he brings life (Ephesians 2:1, 5).
  • Into our separation, he brings reconciliation (Romans 5:10-11).
  • Into our imperfect love, he brings perfect love (1 John 4:10).

The more we’re conscious of God’s love, the less self-conscious we become about ourselves. We spend less time and energy looking to appear perfect and have a life where everything is exactly the way we want it to be; instead, we invest more time and energy pouring ourselves into other people, who, along with us, make an imperfect community, but one infused with God’s love.

  • Ask yourself, “What is stopping me from engaging in genuine community?”

Jon Walker’s new book, “Breakfast with Bonhoeffer,” is a message of hope for anyone longing for another chance at life as God created it to be. It is a story of God’s faithfulness, even through job loss, home loss, economic uncertainty, divorce and an incurable disease. Structured like a novel, it reveals how God works through our often messy and inconsistent faith.

This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Jon Walker

Jon Walker is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and a contributing editor at pastors.com. © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. Used by permission.

One Spirit to Guide Us

Posted on: October 3rd, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , , , ,

But he who unites himself with the Lord is one with him in spirit. 1 Corinthians 6:17 (NIV)

With one Spirit guiding us, we can learn to think like Jesus. We no longer need to understand it all because we know that our perfect God is in control and that our imperfect perceptions are not based in the full reality of his omniscient plan (1 Corinthians 2:15–16; Proverbs 3:5; Proverbs 14:12).

Since we’re one with the Lord in spirit, we can rely on the holy logic of Christ and we can place the interests of others above our own (1 Corinthians 6:17).

We look to God to tell us what is true, knowing that our feelings, and even our thoughts, do not determine the truth. We look to God, knowing that the opinions of others—even a majority—do not have the final say on what is true. Truth is what God says it is and God alone holds the authority to interpreting any situation or circumstance (2 Corinthians 13:8; 1 John 4:1; 2 Corinthians 10:5).

Our courage and confidence to overcome the Devil, sin, and the fallen world is in Christ and his truth, and so Satan, the mortal enemy of Christ, seeks to discourage us by deceitfully blinding us to the reality of Christ in us, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27).

Christ crucified is now Christ risen, and Christ risen sends the Spirit to you, uniting you with him and uniting you with other Jesus-ones, like a vine unites its branches together (John 16:7; 1 Corinthians 6:17; John 15 1:8).

 

Jon’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer, is a story of God’s faithfulness during struggles with bipolar disorder, divorce, and economic uncertainty.

This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Jon Walker

Jon Walker is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and a contributing editor at pastors.com. © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. Used by permission.

Let Us Keep in Step with the Spirit

Posted on: September 11th, 2012 by Chris | Tags: , , ,

By Jon Walker

“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:25 NIV)

When we ignore the Holy Spirit, there’s little difference between the way we live our lives and non-believers who live their lives disconnected and independent from God.

“But people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means” (1 Corinthians 2:14 NLT).

Our objective is to become sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Ask God to teach you to hear his still small voice and to be sensitive to promptings from the Spirit that he’s placed inside you. Then, believe the truth that he will guide you through the decisions and details of your life.

As you learn to walk in the Spirit, God will never ask you to do anything that violates his Word. Promptings from the Holy Spirit will always line up with the Bible; however, they may not line up with your church-ianity traditions or pre-conceived notions.

For the next few weeks, keep a list of all the times you sense the Spirit prompting you. This will help you learn to be sensitive to the Spirit, but it will also strengthen your resolve to be obedient to God’s guidance as you see his constant, loving interest in the details of your life.

And what if you blow it? Remember God’s grace! If you misunderstand the Holy Spirit’s prompting or disobey it, then confess your failure to God; he is faithful to forgive (1 John 1:9). Fall on his grace and remember that you are in the school of Christ. He knows you’re learning; he sent the Holy Spirit to teach you.

Jon’s new book is Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.

Jon is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and the author of Costly Grace: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer’s “The Cost of Discipleship.”  This devotional © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Chris

Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.: “Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another 'feel good' Christian story". This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Our Witness from Within

Posted on: September 4th, 2012 by Chris | Tags: , ,

By Jon Walker

“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” Romans 8:15–16 (NIV)

Consider this:

You are sitting in a restaurant and the atmosphere is quiet until an older man gets a bit cantankerous and his loud conversation lets negativity creep into the dining room.

But just then, Mrs. Jones and some of her friends are seated. They’re in a festive mood, laughing and hugging and even cheerfully greeting diners around their table.

It’s a party, and everyone’s invited! Their joy spills and splashes across the room, and even the cantankerous old man is now smiling and laughing.

Their energy has just changed the entire atmosphere, and it leaves you longing to be part of their group.

Mrs. Jones is a snapshot of us when we let the perfect love of God drive the fear from our lives (1 John 4:18). We live in love, which means we live in God, and God’s love is complete because he lives in us (1 John 4:16).

God’s Spirit in us testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children (Romans 8:15–16). And the joy of Jesus working within us bubbles out as an unforced testimony of God’s life in us.

Our objective-in-Jesus is to embrace God’s grace until the love and joy we experience is infectious, spreading to those around us, creating a longing within them to join our family — the family of God.

Jon’s new book is Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.

Jon is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and the author of Costly Grace: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer’s “The Cost of Discipleship.”  This devotional © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Chris

Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.: “Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another 'feel good' Christian story". This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

You Can Trust God

Posted on: August 31st, 2012 by Chris | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

By Jon Walker

“For the word of the Lord is right and true; he is faithful in all he does. The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love.” (Psalm 33:4-5 NIV)

If we doubt God, the issue is not over God’s ability to support us. He clearly can do that.

God is the sovereign, supreme ruler of the universe, powerful enough to overcome any problem or defeat any enemy: “Everything comes from him; Everything happens through him; Everything ends up in him” (Romans 11:36 MSG).

God is love (1 John 4:16), so we know he is patient and kind. He’s never rude or self-seeking; he’s not easily angered, and he keeps no record of wrongs. He does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. He always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. He never fails (1 Corinthians 13:4-8).

God is always fair (Deuteronomy 32:4); he’s pure and honest (Hebrews 6:18). He cannot break a promise (Numbers 23:19), never fails to fulfill a promise (Joshua 21:45) and is trustworthy in everything he does (Psalm 33:4).

The issue, then, is not if God can be trusted; the issue is with your ability to trust.

Talk About It

What adjectives would you use to describe your attitude when you focus your attention on God? What about when you focus your attention on yourself?

God gives peace to all who trust in him (Isaiah 26:3). Pray for each other, that you would learn to trust more and receive God’s peace.

Jon’s new book is Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.

Jon is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and the author of Costly Grace: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer’s “The Cost of Discipleship.”  This devotional © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Chris

Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.: “Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another 'feel good' Christian story". This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Your Sacrifice Is a Fragrant Offering to God

Posted on: August 29th, 2012 by Chris | Tags: , , , ,

By Jon Walker

“Walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” Ephesians 5:2 (NIV)

When Mary used her hair to rub perfumed oil down between her Savior’s toes, the disciples only whiffed the aroma of waste: “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor” (Matthew 26:9 NIV).

But Jesus suggested such a great sacrifice leads to great influence: “Truly I tell you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her” (Matthew 26:13 NIV).

Perhaps Jesus could smell the sweet fragrance of Mary’s sacrifice because he knew that love finds meaning in sacrifice: “We understand what love is when we realize that Christ gave his life for us. That means we must give our lives for other believers” (1 John 3:16 GWT).

Perhaps, in Mary, Jesus could smell “a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God,” a life “poured out like a drink offering” (Ephesians 5:2; 2 Timothy 4:6 NIV).

The Holy Spirit presses us toward the realm of grace, where we are transformed into seeing opportunities to love where others see wasteful sacrifice. Instead of the odor of waste, we learn to breathe deeply within God’s bouquet of grace, where, like Jesus, we are prepared for burial, ready to be “crucified with Christ,” so that “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me” (Matthew 26:12; Galatians 2:20 NIV).

You may be hitting one of those “I can’t do this” moments, but our brother Paul reminds us that God gives us the grace required to become living sacrifices, and he places the Holy Spirit in us to make us holy and pleasing to him.

“Walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:2 NIV).

Is there a part of your life that requires sacrifice, and you find yourself resenting it? How would things change if you began to see it as “a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God”? Ask God to help you move from smelling the odor of waste to the bouquet of grace.

Jon’s new book is Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.

Jon is managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Hope Devotionals and the author of Costly Grace: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer’s “The Cost of Discipleship.”  This devotional © Copyright 2013 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author: Chris

Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer.: “Gut-wrenching honesty, real world faith, not just another 'feel good' Christian story". This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

About Jon

Jon Walker has worked closely with Rick Warren for many years, first as a writer/editor, later as vice president of communications at Purpose Driven Ministries, and then as a pastor at Saddleback Church.

He's also served as editor-in-chief of LifeWay's HomeLife magazine and founding editor of Rick Warren's Ministry Toolbox.

He is the author of Costly Grace: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer's The Cost of Discipleship. His articles have appeared in publications and websites around the world. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee.

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