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.

Life’s Uncertainty Teaches God Can Be Trusted

Posted on: June 6th, 2013 by Jon Walker | Tags: , ,

We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God. John 6:69 (NIV)

Because the well runs dry, we know Jesus is the river of living water (John 4).

Because the storm rages, we know Jesus is the Lord of the storms (Matthew 14).

Because the floods overwhelm, we know Jesus is the rock on which to build (Matthew 7).

Because the foundation shivers, we know Jesus is the cornerstone that will not move (Matthew 21).

Because sickness comes, we know Jesus is the healer (Matthew 4).

Because we’re bankrupt through the debt of sin, we know Jesus is our redeemer (Galatians 3).

Because we grieve, we know Jesus is the voice calling from the shore, “Friends, haven’t you any fish?” (John 21).

Because we’re full of doubt, we know Jesus is the nail-scarred palm inviting our touch (John 20).

Jesus taught in the “nasty now-and-now” because he knew disciples with focused faith are never made in the classroom; we’re made in the uncertainty of life as we come face-to-face with “I can’t, but God can.”

If we will allow it, our circumstances drive us deeper into the heart of God, and we change because we have believed and come to know the Holy One of God (John 6:69).

 

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.

What prevents you from greater Christian maturity?

Posted on: June 3rd, 2013 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , , ,

“But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.’” (Luke 15:22 NIV)

In the story of the prodigal, we identify with the younger brother, seeing ourselves as prodigals returning to God.

Some of us even identify with the older brother, realizing we’ve sinfully harbored resentment when God shows grace to others who, in our wrongful judgment, are “less Christian” than ourselves.

But have you ever thought God wants you to identify with the prodigal’s father, who “keeps no record of wrongs” as he scans the horizon, always hoping for the return of his son (1 Corinthians 13:5 NIV)?

Consider that we’re on a journey, through Jesus, to become like the heavenly Father, where we become one with his heart, one with his mind, and one with his other-centered focus. We are called to become Christ-like, and when we resemble Jesus, we resemble the Father (John 10:30).

People will see the family resemblance in us; as sons and daughters, they’ll see the maturity of our Father working in and through us. Our objective is to become a father or mother of the faith, a living representation of the Father’s compassion for others.

To be honest, the idea of becoming a father of the faith is as alien to me as it may be for you to believe you could mature into a mother or father of the faith. In fact, it seems impossible; yet, it’s what we are meant to become.

What prevents you from growing into greater Christian maturity?

To echo Oswald Chambers, “Do you not want to be a saint, or do you not believe God can make you one?”

(The idea that we can mature into fathers and mothers of the faith is presented in Henri J. M. Nouwen’s book, The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming.)

 

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.

Faith involves taking risks

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

“Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24 NASB)

As we follow Jesus, he will move us deeper into faith by asking us to take risks. But they are never the proverbial “leap of faith” into darkness; rather they are specific risks that Jesus tells us to take. He asks us to do this because each risk, taken in faith, shows us that Jesus will take care of us, just as he has promised.

Each time we take a step of faith, it moves us further away from living by sight, independent from God, and closer to living a life of faith, where you truly believe you are secure in God’s promises. “Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass” (1 Thessalonians 5:24 NASB).

When we do not live by faith, we live faithlessly — because any decision made independent of God is a faithless decision, no matter how good or right it may appear. Jesus is simply guiding us to the same deep intimacy he has with the Father: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (John 5:19 NIV).

  • What is your natural reaction to taking risks?
  • What are some steps you believe God is telling you to take that seem risky?
  • How will you move forward in faith?

Praise for Breakfast with Bonhoeffer

Best Christian book this year!! – I don’t usually write reviews but this book is so exceptional that I just have to share my thoughts. Jon Walker has managed to share his real life struggles and apply them to the biblical words and understanding of Bonhoeffer. The way he weaves the words of his own story of brokenness with the words of salvation from Jesus Christ teaches us all where our true treasure resides. Mr. Walker shares how he lost his family, financial ruin, and all the while battled mental health demons as he hit bottom. In between anecdotes he gives us Bonhoeffers biblical guidance to inch closer to God, to focus on God, and make God the center of his life. I am buying this book for many of the people I care about for Christmas this year. By jc via Amazon. (Thanks jc!)

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.

Give thanks, for God is at work

Posted on: November 27th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: ,

“Another one of his disciples, Andrew, who was Simon Peter’s brother, said, ‘There is a boy here who has five loaves of barley bread and two fish. But they will certainly not be enough for all these people.’” (John 6:8-9 TEV)

We’ve been talking about how our ability to give thanks to God is based on our ability to see his involvement in our lives and to understand things do not come to us through coincidence.

Was it a coincidence that Andrew met this specific boy among the crowd listening to Jesus? Was it a coincidence that the boy had “five loaves of barley bread and two fish”? And are we any different from Andrew in that he looked at the bigness of the problem instead of looking at the bigness of Jesus?

Here’s one more God-story to help you focus today on the many ways God provides for you. When I sold my home for a huge loss, I knew what was left was “certainly not enough” to even rent a one-bedroom apartment. Surely this was even too big for God.

And then God connected me with friends of friends. David and Susan Moffitt had moved to a new home and not sold their old one. They were letting someone live in the house, but that person would be leaving soon, and Susan suggested I drive by to see if I’d be interested in living there. She said, “It’s a little rough, but if any house has character, this one has it.”

So I drove through a neighborhood of older, upscale homes, down a street lined with trees, creating the kind of entrance effect you might find as you enter the grounds to an old Southern college. At the end of the road, I could see a white house with a white picket fence. It looked as if it was sitting in the middle of the road, but, as I got closer, I could see it was a visual effect because the road took a sharp turn to the right just in front of the house.

The Moffitt house was the last holdout from the parceled progress that turned a plantation and some farms into just another neighborhood. It was an old 1940s farmhouse sitting like a two-acre oasis in the middle of suburbia. I pulled into the dirt driveway and drove up to the front, next to the white picket fence.

Just as I stopped the car, three deer walked out from behind a large hedge and stood a few feet away from me. And — I kid you not — right on cue, Amy Grant’s version of “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” started playing on the radio.

Later, I called Susan and told her I’d like to talk about moving into the house. I hesitated and then asked, “How much are you planning to charge?” She said, “Oh, we weren’t planning to charge anything. We’re glad if we can bless you.”

How has God provided for you this year?

Ask God to show you the things in the last year that you’ve written off as coincidence but were actually God at work in your life.

This devotional was adapted from my 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.

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

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.

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.

Why would God NOT be involved in your circumstances?

Posted on: November 22nd, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: 

“Jesus, worn out by the trip, sat down at the well. It was noon. A woman, a Samaritan, came to draw water. Jesus said, ‘Would you give me a drink of water?’” (John 4:6-7 MSG)

This week give some thought to this question: Is there such a thing as coincidence?

In Kingdom reality, there simply cannot be. Random doesn’t happen in God’s Kingdom. Oswald Chambers says God is the Great Engineer, creating circumstances to bring about moments in our lives of divine importance, leading us to divine appointments.

Was it a coincidence that Jesus came upon the woman at the well? Was she just a random woman who walked into a discussion of God’s grace and omnipotence and then told a whole village about God’s forgiveness? Would God have left that all to chance?

Would he do any less in the details of your life?

The Bible says God actively works within our circumstances. And so we cannot judge our situation apart from God’s wisdom.

In other words, we must leave it up to God to interpret our circumstances. Only he is capable of understanding all the facts, and only he sees the significance of every detail.

This is a critical question to answer in your life: Is God active in your current circumstances or not?

Think about this —

  • Why would God NOT be involved in your circumstances?
  • If you believed God had your best interest at heart, how would you view your current circumstances differently?

 

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.

Don’t give up: Look for what God can do

Posted on: November 15th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , ,

“His disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.’” (John 9:2-3 NIV)

As Jesus and his school-in-motion moved through town, they came upon a man who’d been blind since birth. The apostles started a prosecution-of-blame: “Maybe he’s blind because he sinned? Maybe he’s blind because of something his parents did?”

Eugene Peterson suggests that Jesus’ response could be paraphrased, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do” (John 9:3-4 MSG).

Instead of finding someone to blame for your difficult situation, look instead for what God can do through you and for you!

Look to what God can do through his power, strength, and majesty. Get your eyes off the things below and look to what God can do right now through you because the “night is coming,” when you’ll no longer be able to work (John 9:4 NIV).

We don’t have time to figure it all out. Instead of asking, “Why me?” we need to ask, “What do you want me to do in this situation, Lord?”

The apostle Paul says, “We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body” (2 Corinthians 4:10 HCSB). In other words, we carry Jesus’ death in our bodies, and then God resurrects the life of Jesus within us.

God uses our tragedies like an involuntary surgery that causes fear and even greater pain, but on the other side we are stronger, on the way to recovery from our disease of faithlessness.

And even though it may be difficult to see how God can do that or to even see God at work, we grow more confident that he is moving us toward a peaceful future (Romans 8:28; Jeremiah 29:11).

How have you seen God use a difficult situation in your life for good?

How do you think it’s possible to be confident in God’s power at work even when we are going through a crisis?

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. “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.

You Bring Joy to God

Posted on: November 13th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , ,

“His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure.” (Ephesians 1:5 NLT)

Say the following as a prayer.

In faith, I know this to be true:

God is in love with me, and when he thinks of me, it brings him joy.

It was his good pleasure to create me, and he created me so he could love me and his glory could shine through me. He chose me “in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight” (Ephesians 1:4 NIV).

In his love, he determined to adopt me into his family, and, even then, he planned for my redemption through Jesus’ blood, bringing “the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on [me] with all wisdom and understanding” (Ephesians 1:7–8).

His love for me is continuous, so that I can say with confidence and joy, “When I awake, I am still with you” (Psalm 139:18b).

By his Spirit, I can live a life worthy of the Lord, and I am able to “please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:10).

Jesus teaches me this confidence in God’s love, so that the same joy that is in him will be in me and so my joy will be complete, centered wholly in God (John 15:11).

  • What would it feel like to be “lavished” with God’s grace?
  • How does it feel to know God is pleased to have you in his family?

 

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.

Don’t give up: Look for what God can do

Posted on: November 12th, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , ,

“His disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.’” (John 9:2-3 NIV)

As Jesus and his school-in-motion moved through town, they came upon a man who’d been blind since birth. The apostles started a prosecution-of-blame: “Maybe he’s blind because he sinned? Maybe he’s blind because of something his parents did?”

Eugene Peterson suggests that Jesus’ response could be paraphrased, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do” (John 9:3-4 MSG).

Instead of finding someone to blame for your difficult situation, look instead for what God can do through you and for you!

Look to what God can do through his power, strength, and majesty. Get your eyes off the things below and look to what God can do right now through you because the “night is coming,” when you’ll no longer be able to work (John 9:4 NIV).

We don’t have time to figure it all out. Instead of asking, “Why me?” we need to ask, “What do you want me to do in this situation, Lord?”

The apostle Paul says, “We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body” (2 Corinthians 4:10 HCSB). In other words, we carry Jesus’ death in our bodies, and then God resurrects the life of Jesus within us.

God uses our tragedies like an involuntary surgery that causes fear and even greater pain, but on the other side we are stronger, on the way to recovery from our disease of faithlessness.

And even though it may be difficult to see how God can do that or to even see God at work, we grow more confident that he is moving us toward a peaceful future (Romans 8:28; Jeremiah 29:11).

  • How have you seen God use a difficult situation in your life for good?
  • How do you think it’s possible to be confident in God’s power at work even when we are going through a crisis?

 

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.

Each step of faith we take leads us to deeper faith

Posted on: November 1st, 2012 by Jon Walker | Tags: , , ,

“Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24 NASB)

As we follow Jesus, he will move us deeper into faith by asking us to take risks. But they are never the proverbial “leap of faith” into darkness; rather they are specific risks that Jesus tells us to take.

He asks us to do this because each risk, taken in faith, shows us that Jesus will take care of us, just as he has promised. Each time we take a step of faith, it moves us further away from living by sight, independent from God, and closer to living a life of faith, where you truly believe you are secure in God’s promises. “Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass” (1 Thessalonians 5:24 NASB).

When we do not live by faith, we live faithlessly — because any decision made independent of God is a faithless decision, no matter how good or right it may appear. Jesus is simply guiding us to the same deep intimacy he has with the Father: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (John 5:19 NIV).

So what do you think

  • What is your natural reaction to taking risks?
  • What are some steps you believe God is telling you to take that seem risky? How will you move forward in faith?

 

My new book, “Breakfast with Bonhoeffer” is structured like a novel, in hopes of showing the reader how God works through our often messy and inconsistent faith. It is a message of hope for anyone longing for another chance at finding life as God created it to be.

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.

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.

pastors.com