"Call to me and I will answer you, and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. " Jeremiah 33:3

Friday, March 30, 2012

"For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ." Philippians 3:20 NASB

Several years ago I traveled to China on business on two separate occasions. I flew into Hong Kong and then traveled by train into mainland China. The customs area going into China was enormous, it was a sea of people as far as you could see, I will never forget that. Like other custom areas there were lines for citizens and for visitors and the lines were very long. As I stood in line I glanced at the people and took note of their passports, there was green, dull red, many other colors and of course mine was deep blue. I remember how proud I was to be standing in line with my dark blue passport that had the seal of the United States of America and those words on the cover! I was not the only one standing in line that day checking out passports for soon I was in conversation with citizens from the United Kingdom, we had an immediate connection because we speak the same language even though we sounded totally different, I love English accents.

Do you realize if you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ that your true passport reads HEAVEN and the seal on the front signifies the Holy Spirit of God? (Ephesians 1:13) It is true, we are; expatriates, aliens, sojourners, living in the world but not of the world for our citizenship is in Heaven!

Our true passport is blood red because the only ones that can carry this passport are those that have had their sin debt paid for through the blood of Jesus Christ alone, who gave His life on the cross that we might be reconciled to God. You can't purchase this passport for any amount, you can never ever earn it or work for it, it is a gift from God to all who believe and confess with their mouths that Jesus Christ is Lord and that God raised Him from the dead! This passport is the only way into Heaven, without it you will never clear customs!

Do you stand out in a sea of people because of your blood red passport? Are you proudly holding it in plain sight so that all can see?

Do you engage with others in line that have a different passport? Or are you ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ? How can we stand in line side by side knowing that the passport that they carry and have put their trust in, will never clear customs into Heaven and never say a word to them about Christ the Way?

We must enter through the narrow gate, the broad gate which is used by most will never get you into Heaven. Please don't be deceived; "There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death." Proverbs 16:25.

Remember Jesus words to the Father on behalf of His disciples and to all of us who would believe; "They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth. As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world." John 17:16-18 NASB.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

"Keep fervent in your love for one another. Be hospitable to one another without complaint. As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God." 1 Peter 4:8-10 NASB

One of my all time favorite movies, is It's a Wonderful Life. In it the lead character, played by Jimmy Stewart is in despair and attempts to commit suicide and a strange little man shows up and thwarts the suicide. The little man's name is Clarence, he is an angel who is trying to earn his wings. The movie depicts what would happen if Stewart's character had never been born. It is amazing how many lives were affected by his life. Being able to view how his life had helped so many others totally transformed Jimmy Stewart's character and Clarence got his wings!

So today I pray that as you consider your life in light of the questions below you too will be encouraged this day. God bless you all who read this, and please ask the Lord to help you answer the questions and try not to be so critical of yourself.

Do you have children? If you were never born, they would not have life. Consider your children's lives, and how they have blessed so many people beginning with their parents. Of course your grandchildren would not be here either, and only God knows how they would have blessed the world just by being alive and living their lives according to God's purpose for them! Be encouraged by your children and grandchildren, I am because they encourage me.

Have you ever shared Christ with another? Then you have a part in their salvation which has eternal ramifications! You were sowing the seed and Scripture says that some seed this is sown will yield a crop of one hundred fold. What if you shared Christ with the future Billy Graham? Or what if all of the hundred shared Christ with just one, but their one had a hundred fold return, think of the people that would be affected by your little involvement in kingdom work!

Have you ever prepared a meal for another that was in need? Have you ever visited someone in the hospital or in prison, or a nursing home? Have you ever given possessions or money to another in Jesus name? Have you ever shown kindness to a child, or love or provisions? Then you are blessed because Jesus sees and knows about every time and He even said it is as though you have done it unto Me.

Have you ever sponsored a youth to go on a mission trip, or church camp? Have you ever sent a card just to let someone know you care and that you reached out to encourage them. I'm talking an actual card that you put a stamp on and mail it via snail mail. So much more personal than tweets, text, Facebook or email. Have you given rides to people for medical appointments, or taken them to the grocery store or other errands?

Have you ever prayed for another and faithfully lifted them up to the Lord? Have you prayed for people and they didn't even know it? Have you ever prayed for total strangers? God knows who, what, where and when you prayed, every time! I believe when we are in heaven that we will know fully just as we have been fully known. 1 Corinthians 13:12. And we will know who has prayed for us and they will know that we have prayed for them. Wow what a blessing that will be!

Are you a teacher? Okay let me define teacher, do you have influence over another person? In the home, in the workplace, in volunteer work, in church, in Sunday school, in cell groups, study groups, and yes; grade school, middle school, high school and college. I think that probably covers most of the human race and classifies them as teachers. If you teach truth, compassion for others, responsibility for one another, forgiveness, or scriptural values then you have touched another for good!

I could go on and on but this is a blog post not a novel. I pray that you were encouraged today on the value of a single life...yours! And I pray that this would be an encouragement to do even more for that is the affect it has had on me as I wrote it.

One last thing, who made a difference for good in your life? Let them know today, encourage them and thank them.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

What does full surrender to the Lord look like?

Full surrender of our lives is not for the timid or the meek, you don't test the waters with your toe and ease in gradually. And it isn't for those who think they are doing just fine in running their lives. And it definitely isn't for those that are content to sit on the sidelines watching others living the surrendered life.

So for those who are willing, imagine yourself diving head first into an infinity pool of Divine liquid love, can you feel the exhilaration as you are enveloped with warm liquid?

All you see with your eyes are the prisms of light reflected in every droplet, of course this water is over-flowing with light, after all Jesus is the Light of the whole world!

Now, listen very closely, can you hear the quiet? This stillness is to remind you to be still and to know that He is God, there is absolutely nothing that is beyond His control, for He is Sovereign over all! Relax as you are supported wholly by the strength of His love for you personally. Close your eyes and float without fear because you are in the grip of the Lord God Almighty. Be anxious for nothing for you belong to the Prince of Peace, the Lion of the tribe of Judah. Nothing can ever come close to the peace that Jesus gives you.

Now child do you feel the warmth of the Son on your face? You are reminded of the Scripture that says His eyes are ever upon you, for you are precious in His sight. Spend time daily in His presence drink deeply from the river of His delights and then follow where He leads you every day.

Can you picture yourself here? Are you ready to dive in, total surrender to His will for your life? Rest assured that there is no way you would ever even begin to imagine the good life He has for you!

Don't let anything or anyone keep you from surrender to Jesus Christ, He is waiting with open arms to catch you. Dive in with total abandon, filled with trust in the One who loves you and gave Himself for you. Easter is coming when we celebrate the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus who with total abandon surrendered His life willing on our behalf.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

"Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed? They said to him, No, we have not even heard whether there is a Holy Spirit." Acts 19:2 NASB

When I was a child we attended a church that closed each service by singing the doxology that ended with "praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost." I remember thinking who is this Holy Ghost and why is he included with the Father and the Son, it just seemed kinda spooky to me. It wasn't until much later that I learned that the Holy Spirit as He is now called, was with the Father and the Son at the beginning; "And the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters." Genesis 1:2.

Much later the Lord began to open my eyes and give me understanding through His Word as to the person and actions of the Holy Spirit as revealed in the Word of God. I will provide all of the Scripture references at the end so you can look them up for yourself.

Jesus told His disciples all about the Holy Spirit for the time of His departure from was drawing near. Here is what He said;

Jesus called the Holy Spirit the Comforter, or Helper and He told the disciples that the Spirit abides WITH them but would abide IN them forever! He called Him the Spirit of truth and said that the world could not receive Him for they neither know or seek Him.

The Spirit will teach us all things and He will bring to your remembrance My Words. Wow what a promise, The Spirit teaches us and guides us into all truth which is the Word of God and He is the one that helps us today to remember and recall the Word of God!

The Spirit does not draw attention to Himself, He testifies about Jesus. The Spirit is the One who convicts the world of sin, righteousness and judgment. We cannot come to Jesus or even know that we are sinners in need of the Savior Jesus without the work of the Holy Spirit. Again Jesus says, the Spirit will guide you into all truth, will give us discernment regarding false teaching. He will speak what He hears from Jesus just as the Father spoke to Jesus and He proclaimed the Father's words. They are always in perfect agreement; Father, Son, Spirit, the Word.

Do you know that God knows that we do not know how to pray? He doesn't condemn us for that, He gives us the Holy Spirit who because He is God, knows the will of God, so He can help us in our prayers! Scripture says that the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words according to God's perfect will! Wow! How comforting is that? So we pray with our minds which are limited and we pray in the Spirit in Whom there are no limitations.

In the Old Testament the sign of the covenant between God and His people the nation of Israel was circumcision. In the new covenant, which is ratified in Christ's blood which was poured out on the cross for the sins of the world; so that all believers in Christ for redemption of sin are sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit.

Every believer receives the Holy Spirit when they are born again. Yet we are told in Scripture that we are to be continually filled, with the Holy Spirit, which means in part that we are under control of the Spirit, dependent on Him to lead us, to empower us, to impart wisdom and discernment as we need it, to guide us into all truth in the Word and bring it to our remembrance. The Holy Spirit will also disclose to us the things that are yet to come and how important is that in the life of a believer living in this time in history, for truly we may be the last generation living before the Lord Jesus comes again. By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.

So important is the role of the Holy Spirit in the world and in the life of a believer that Jesus Christ told His disciples not to do anything at all until they received the Holy Spirit of God. How much more do we need the Holy Spirit today, at this very special time in history?

Oswald Chambers who wrote My Utmost For His Highest has the following verse on His tombstone. "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him." Luke 11:13.

This is just a little scratch of the surface regarding the Spirit of God but I hope that what was shared will become real in your life experience. All of the scripture quotes come from the NASB; Acts 19:2, John 14:16-17,26, John 15:26-27, John 16:7-14, Romans 8:26-27, 1 John 4:13, Ephesians 1:13,5:18, Acts 1:8.

Monday, March 26, 2012

"For you ignore God's law and substitute your own tradition." Mark 7:8 NLT

In today's title verse Jesus is talking to the Pharisees who ignored the commands of God in Scripture to practice the traditions that man came up with. Jesus went on to say in verse nine; "You skillfully sidestep God's law in order to hold on to your own traditions."

Least we look down our noses on the Pharisees, every religion in the world no matter what or where they are has there own church doctrine that men created. Jesus called them the traditions and precepts of man, they are things that are added apart from Scripture.

Whether or not you realize it you are very affected by these doctrines, traditions and precepts, truth is many of us know more about church doctrine than we know about the Scriptures. Even if you have never been part of a brick and mortar church, you too are a product of the traditions and yes doctrines that exist for those people that have rejected God and formal religion. Among whom are atheists and agnostics to name but a few.

So why was Jesus upset with the Pharisees? Because their traditions were overriding the commandments of God as found in Scripture. If people hear something all of their lives usually from childhood on, they tend to believe what they are told without ever questioning it. On one occasion Jesus entered into the synagogue and a man was there with a withered hand. And the Pharisees were just waiting and watching to see if Jesus would heal the man on the Sabbath so they could accuse Him! "After looking around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart. He said to the man, Stretch out your hand, and he stretched it out, and his hand was restored." Mark 3:5.

I am convinced that because so much of church emphasis is placed on activities instead of the Scripture, or doctrines taught more than the Word of God. That we have generations of believers that do not know the Word of God! Now the responsibility of seeking God in His Word is up to the believer! The church can preach God's Word and proclaim it as truth and encourage daily time spent in the Word,but the doing is squarely on us!

If we don't know God's Word, we don't know Jesus Christ, we don't know who we are or what we are to do. No wonder so very few believers share their faith, witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ to others. Church traditions and lack of knowledge of Scripture have convoluted the message and the gospel, no wonder people are fearful of sharing Christ!

We need to get in the Word daily, stay in the Word and let it be our guide, our only authority especially when it comes to the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is not convoluted, it is simple, so simple even a child can understand it! Jesus said in Matthew 18:3; "I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven."

Maybe its time for us to get back to basics, this time building our foundation on the Word of God, seeking the truth for ourselves and then doing it. Walking in fellowship and obedience to our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Jesus Christ is Lord

Hi everyone this is just to let you know that going forward the posts will every Monday through Friday. No more weekend posts. Thank you for reading, thank you for your comments!

Friday, March 23, 2012

"Obviously, I'm not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ's servant." Galatians 1:10 NLT

Have you ever noticed how fickle most fans are? One minute they are so supportive, raving about the latest and greatest movie star or athlete or singer and then when they are thru with them or tired of them or bored with them they delight in watching their idols fall apart. Idols come cheap in North America and all over the world. Really they never even stand a chance, there is always someone waiting in the wings, waiting for them to fail so they can take their place. There will always be someone who is more beautiful, who can sing better, who can play better, someone who is just more talented, someone who is intelligent, when you are an idol, there is always someone looking to knock you off of your tenuous perch. What drives an idol? Easy, money, fame, power and most enticing of all the applause of men and women.

People today quickly admit to being people pleasers. You can even see it in young children, many try so hard to make their moms and dads love them or be proud of them. And sadly many live their whole lives trying to please someone, mate, peers, bosses, teammates or friends.

Jesus knows what is in mankind, He knows that we have that tendency to want to please others and He warns against it. He desires that we concern ourselves with pleasing God alone, the One who made us, is the One we are to serve and please. Pleasing people will hinder us from coming to God.

"Many people did believe in Him, however, including some of the Jewish leaders. But they wouldn't admit it for fear that the Pharisees would expel them from the synagogue. For they loved human praise more than the praise of God." John 12:42-43 NLT.

Many people of other faiths around the world believe in Jesus but fear of parents, other family members is keeping them silent. Some are fearful of being murdered, and others have already died for their faith.

Jesus warned us about doing good to be seen by men rather than God in Matthew 6:1 NLT; "Watch out! Don't do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven." The same verse in the MSG reads like this; "Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don't make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won't be applauding."

We are to give our gifts in private, and our Father, who sees everything will reward us. The same way when we pray, go away be yourself, or shut yourself in a closet and pray to the Father and He will reward you. When we fast don't make it obvious to be seen by people to gain their admiration. Fast in private where only the Father sees and He will reward you.

When we do "good deeds" to be seen by others, God who knows our hearts, has warned us that the applause of man is the only reward we will get, because our Father wants no part of that charade. It's time to get real with ourselves, with others and most of all with God.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." 2 Timothy 4:7 ESV

Don't you think most believers want to be able to say the same thing that the Apostle Paul said in today's Title scripture? I know I sure do.

The beginning of my race was a mess, I struggled getting out of the gate. I gave my life to Christ and asked Him to forgive my sins and come into my life, I meant it and I know He heard my prayer. What made my beginning a mess was that I was not in church and I was not in the Word of God. I don't mean to make excuses but strange as it may seem I didn't know how important both of those things were to growing and maturing in Christ.

Believing in Jesus Christ for salvation is the beginning, not the end!

Thank God I was never disqualified or yanked out of the race, the Lord took care of that even though I didn't know or realize it at the time. He is always faithful even when we are not. And it was His loving kindness that drew me to His Word and that changed everything! I know I write all the time about how critical it is to read the Word of God and spend time with Him everyday and I make no apologies for it because if you aren't in the Bible you don't know Jesus, you don't know His plan for you, you are ignorance of His promises and His ways!

God gave us His Word, to enlighten our minds, to bring us out of darkness into His glorious light, to speak truth so that we would know the truth and His truth sets us free from the power of sin in our lives.

"Every Scripture is God breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, and for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God's will in thought, purpose and action), so that the man of God may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work." 2 Timothy 3:16 AMP.

Back to the race, Jesus never gives up on His own, once you are wearing His colors and you belong in His stable, you belong to Him forever and no one can ever take you away from Him!

I have no idea when my race will end, none of us do, but I have made up my mind to finish this race well! I want to delight the Lord Jesus because of His everlasting love for me, His care, mercy, forgiveness and faithfulness take my breath away. I want to "excel still more every day remaining in the race set before me and I will for God is with me!

I realize it would have been easier to follow if I had made it a people race, but what can I say, I've always loved horses.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

"Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights..." Isaiah 42:1 NASB

Delight, there's a word you don't hear very much in 2012. At lunch today ask your friends or co workers how they would define delight. I asked that question in bible study last night and one lady said, "a baby", great answer! Because we associate innocence with a baby and their smiles, the way they discover their little toes, almost everything delights us about a baby. Here is how Websters defines it; Delight, a high degree of pleasure or enjoyment; joy; rapture; something that gives great pleasure; to give great pleasure, satisfaction, or enjoyment to; please highly.

In today's Title verse we read that God says His soul delights in His Chosen One, the Lord Jesus Christ! Scripture has much to say about what delights God but also what delights believers. As you read them remember the definition of delight.

Psalm 1:2 NLT; "But they delight in the law of the LORD, meditating on it day and night." Gods Word delights the ones who meditate on it day and night! This meditation is not eastern religious meditation, if any of you have ever worried, you know how something just keeps turning over and over in your mind, that is what is meant to meditate on the Word, you read it and through out the day and night you think about it over and over.

In Psalm 119 all 176 verses speak of the wonder of the Word of God! The word delight is used nine times. This is a sampling; I shall delight in Your statutes, Your testimonies also are my delight, Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, for I delight in it, Your law is my delight, If Your law had not been my delight then I would have perished in my affliction, Trouble and anguish have come upon me, yet Your commandments are my delight.

Jeremiah 9:24 reveals three other things the Lord delights in. "Let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the LORD." How blessed are we the our Lord delights in these things?

Are you aware that the LORD delights in you, His child? He does! "He brought me forth also into a broad place; He rescued me, because He delighted in me."

God's love, holiness, justice, righteousness, mercy, grace, peace, and joy are all over the top effusive!! He delights in pouring these out on His own, so is it any wonder to know that God has a river of His delights? Psalm 36:8; "They drink their fill of the abundance of Your house; And You give them to drink of the river of Your delights." That scripture thrills my soul and every time I read it I smile, just imagine drinking of the river of His delights!!! Our God is unequivocally amazing, praise Your name O LORD!!!

The following verse is a source of comfort to believers everywhere. "When my anxious thoughts multiply with me, Your consolations delight my soul." Psalm 94:19. Isn't that great?

I want to close with one of my favorite scriptures, a favorite because of what God did in my life. Psalm 37:4; "Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart." When I set my mind and heart to seek the LORD and to delight myself in Him, He gave me the desire of my heart, imagine my surprise to discover that He, the Lord Jesus Christ, IS the desire of my heart!

What is the desire of your heart? Are you delighting yourself in the Lord, and in His Word? Please begin today to seek the Lord in His Word, are you thirsty? He will meet with you there and give you a drink from the river of His delights! Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

"There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven." Ecclesiastes 3:1

Psalm 139:16 NLT says; "You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in Your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed." God knew you before you were born, He knows the length of your life and He has it recorded in His book. That's right, your name, and the number of your days and God has them recorded, and all of that took place; before you were born!

"We need to be energetically at work for the One who sent Me here, working while the sun shines. When night falls, the workday is over." John 9:4 MSG. Since no one knows the day that holds their last sunshine how much more should we, like Jesus, concern ourselves with the work that was given us to do? Night time could be closer than any of us think and once it comes, we are out of time to do or say anything! The time for you and me to complete the purpose God has for our individual lives. See Jeremiah 29:11.

As I take some time to meditate on what could be remaining to do in my life and I know what it is because God's Word tells me. His revealed will is applicable to all of us who have believed on His name regardless of our individual purposes. So here goes, if as you are reading this you knew that today was your last day what would you do?

* Have you delayed asking Jesus Christ to forgive your sins, to come into your heart and be Lord over your life? Today is the day and if you hear His voice, do not harden your heart! Ever other decision you will ever make pales in comparison to this one.

* Is there anyone that you have not forgiven? It doesn't matter what they did, it isn't important if they never asked for forgiveness...forgive them now, today just as Christ forgave you for all of your sins.

* Is there someone in your life past or present who has made an impact for good in you? It might be a family member, coach, teacher, pastor, friend, or even a total stranger. If you haven't yet thanked them, do it today, while you still can. Reach out to them and encourage them as they encouraged you.

* Don't leave this earth without pouring out love (the love of Jesus that was poured into your heart by the Holy Spirit)to every family member, husband, wife, sons, daughters, their mates, grandchildren, to other believers. Jesus loves us unconditionally and Jesus within us enables us to love that way to His glory.

* Most important of all don't go before the presence of God empty handed. Fulfill the great commission as found in Acts 1:8. Share the gospel of Jesus Christ with someone who is lost, pray with them to be saved and born again. Don't put this off for another day, for today may be your last day or theirs. Be obedient to God now, before it is too late.

The life application that is burning in my heart right now is the importance of immediate obedience to do what God tells us to do, when He tells us to do it! Remember, He has all of our days written down in His book, He alone knows the years, months, weeks, days, hours, minutes and even seconds remaining in your life and mine. So, when He prompts us to go or to do or to say, do it now while we have breath remaining in us and the sun is still shining...

Monday, March 19, 2012

"So take everything the Master has set out for you, well made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way." Ephesians 6:11 MSG

My mother always laid out my father's clothes for him, not because he was incapable of putting together an ensemble, she just liked doing things for him. My parents were married 58 years before the Lord called my father home. My aunt still does the same thing for her man and they in three weeks will celebrate 63 years of marriage! Hum, makes you wonder if laying out your husbands clothes has anything to do with longevity in marriage!

One of the ladies that attends my church does the same thing for her husband. And several years ago a tsunami hit Indonesia and medical personnel from many countries went to help in the relief efforts, my friends husband was among those that went. She shared that while he was away she obviously could not lay out his clothes so she dressed him every day in the armor of God! And God returned her husband to her.

We put so much effort in choosing what we should wear everyday and yet many neglect the armor that God has supplied to each one of His children. Why do we need armor? Isn't that for soldiers going into battle? Yes, it is for soldiers and that is precisely why we need it! Yet our battle is not with some nation or even flesh and blood...

"For we are not fighting against flesh and blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12 NLT.

"We are human, but we don't wage war as humans do. We use God's mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ." 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NLT.

What is this armor that God has supplied it consists of a helmet, a breastplate, a belt, shoes, a shield and a sword. These are figurative, but what they represent is very real!

"Therefore, put on every piece of God's armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God." Ephesians 6:13-17 NLT.

Note there is only one offensive weapon, and that is because it is so powerful we don't need another, the sword which the Word of God! What is the condition of your sword is it sharp, is it ready to use, or is it still in the scabbard? Jesus used the sword against Satan when He was tempted in the wilderness, Jesus said; "it is written" each time using God's Word to soundly defeat the enemy.

You may think it's a little silly to lay out your husbands clothes, besides you have your children's clothes to pick out and get yourself dressed, but please dress your family in the armor of God by faith in prayer everyday. The world is evil, so dress for the battle and don't kid yourself, if you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ you are in a battle, that is becoming more and more visible everyday.

"Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world." 1 John 4:4 ESV.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

"For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways." James 1:7-8 NASB

The Word of God explains to us today's Title verse regarding a double-minded man it says; whatever we ask God for we must ask in faith without any doubting, do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind! Is there anything more unstable?

Double-minded believers can't expect anything from God because to be double-minded is to have a divided loyalty and that will never be acceptable in God's sight. This truth is all over the Word of God, we are going to look at four examples.

God says that if we love the world, we will not love Him! "You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God." James 4:4. The worlds ways and Gods kingdom way are diametrically opposed to one another. They repel one another like magnets. The world is attractive to the flesh and the flesh is hostile toward God. Read Romans 8:7-8.

"Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier." 2 Timothy 2:3-4. As a born again believer we are not to get entangled in the affairs of everyday life, entangled is the operative word here and in the Greek it means; to weave into. We are in the world but Jesus says we are not of the world, we are sojourning now, don't allow the worlds ways to weave you in!

A perfect example of getting entangled by the world is found in the parable of the seed as written in Luke 8:14 NLT; "The seeds that fell among the thorns represent those who hear the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity." Cares, worries, riches and pleasures of this life, (the world) be very careful not to get caught up in them for if you do you won't ever mature as a child of God. And why would you ever settle for less that the abundant life God promises while we are still in the world?

This last example is the same as one example of thorns we just read about, but because this is so insidious, so deceitful, it warrants another mention. Jesus makes it very clear in Luke 16:13 when He says; "No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money." Wow! The world trusts in money, riches, possessions and Jesus said in Luke 12:34; "Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be." Money has the world convinced that it is the source of their security, that is a lie!

That is why God asks us to tithe, He does not need our money, He does that to break the entanglement that money has on people! And before you tithe you feel the pull for and against it, that is the hold it has on you, once you are obedient to do what Jesus says, the hold is broken! Money is not evil, the love of money is because of the bondage it places on us. God alone is our trust, our security and provider, once you tithe your eyes are opened to that truth, and you are set free!

Friday, March 16, 2012

"They were glorifying God because of me." Galatians 1:24 NASB

This morning in my quiet time the Lord drew my attention to today's title verse and as I considered the verse the Spirit brought other scriptures to my mind that gave me clarity and understanding of today's verse. Would you please read the title verse and ask yourself what I asked myself; is my life causing anyone to glorify God?

Is that what our lives are supposed to do, bring glory to God? Well, yes! "Bring all who claim Me as their God, for I have made them for My glory. It was I who created them." Isaiah 43:7 NLT.

Now that we know that we were created to bring God glory how do we do that? Jesus answered that question in Matthew 5:16; "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven." We must be careful of how we let our light shine that is what the "in such a way" refers to.

Jesus came down hard on the Pharisees because they did works to be seen by men, to receive glory unto themselves from men! There is a verse in Matthew 6:1 that warns about this attitude and in the Message it reads like this; "Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don't make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won't be applauding."

Do you realize that you are priceless in God's eyes? You are priceless because God bought you for Himself and He paid an exorbitant price for you with the death, burial and resurrection of His only begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ! And what that means is you and I don't belong to ourselves, to live for ourselves, we belong to God and we live in and for Christ. "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NASB.

We also bring glory to God when we, in obedience to Him, do what He tells us to do! "...they will glorify God for your obedience..." 2 Corinthians 9:13.

"Fear God," he shouted. "Give glory to Him. For the time has come when He will sit as judge. Worship Him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and all the springs of water." Revelation 14:7 NLT.

Amen. Glory to God!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

"Thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live." 1 Thessalonians 5:18 MSG

We must choose to put our tongues to good use because the default position consists of murmuring, complaining, anger, etc. If you doubt the truth of this statement ask the Lord to make you aware of what is coming out of your mouth and He will show you, He showed me. Everywhere I have ever lived people complain about the weather, complain about prices, complain about politics and complain about their jobs. I know what you are thinking, so what, that's harmless, ah, but that is not true, for every murmur about the weather, prices, politics, jobs, there are many more unspoken complaints in our hearts and minds. Matthew 12:34; "For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart."

What would our day be like if we deliberately put a guard on our mouth not to complain but instead our mouth spoke; encouragement, praise to God, and thanksgiving? First of all our day would be much better because our focus would shift from us to God, our focus would shift from what we don't have, to the blessings we do have.

Much like the child that is given so much at Christmas or for "just because", none of it matters because we trained them to have a sense of entitlement! Then they grow up with that belief that they deserve the best and they deserve it now! This country is drowning in credit card debt for many reasons not the least of which is the idea that possessions bring happiness. How else can we explain lifetimes filled with endless shopping sprees?

Just for fun take a piece of paper and write down a list of the top 25 things you are truly thankful for, take some time to do this. The things that didn't make it to your top 25 do you really need any of them, did they meet the need inside of you? Or were you already craving something else before you even unloaded the must haves from your car? The items on your top 25, were children on it, your health, and your friends?

I don't remember where this quote came from but I've never forgotten it. What if tomorrow morning all that you had was gone, EXCEPT for the things that you had told God you were thankful for yesterday? What would you have left? Who do you think would have the most the next day, the super rich, or the one living paycheck to paycheck?

Every good thing in your life and in mine, yes every good thing, comes down from the Father of lights. James 1:17 MSG; "Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light..."

Father God, forgive me for my murmuring and complaining, give me a thankful heart for all the blessings You have provided, and deliver me from greed and prideful entitlement.
In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

"Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven." Luke 6:37 NLT

Several years ago a very dear friend of mine and I had a discussion about today's Title verse. We also discussed how dangerous gossip about others is in any group let alone in the body of Christ. As a result of that conversation I wrote a satire on judgmental attitudes, unforgiveness, gossip and slander in the church. The name of it was Rebel Ram and Ego Ewe.

Two sheep who amuse themselves every Monday by discussing the latest gossip they picked up from the prayer requests that were mentioned in their Sunday school classes. Sadly some prayer requests are thinly veiled items of gossip the sheep want to spread.

Rebel and Ego, as their names reveal are very critical about the other sheep, they mock the way they dress, if one sheep shows up on Sunday morning wearing Jimmy Choos hoof covers, they judge them for spending all that money that could have been given to the benevolence fund!

They mock the sheep that speak up in Bible Study, while gossiping about the ones that never speak up! Their tongues speak death, gossip, and lies where ever they go. They are so unhappy in their own wool that they put every one down thinking that will make them feel better. But of course all that does is make them more miserable, you can't spew all of that hate and jealousy without it destroying you from within.

Fortunately for Rebel Ram and Ego Ewe they began reading God's Word and they saw themselves as they truly were, and they didn't like it! God's Word does that, it is a mirror that does not lie! James 1:23-24 says "For if you listen to the Word and don't obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like."

But Rebel and Ego listened to the Word, Romans 14:4; "Who are you to condemn someone else's servants? Their own master will judge whether they stand or fall. And with the Lord's help, they will stand and receive His approval." They were convicted by this Word and others and they repented and sought forgiveness.

These two sheep saw themselves and the Word of God transformed their minds. We are each one sinners, saved by the grace of God believing in the Lord Jesus Christ! And Christ is the only Judge and when He returns the second time He will judge the whole earth. We as His sheep are to love one another, build one another up, forgive each other, worship and serve God in unity!

We are to pray for one another, give to one another as each has a need and so fulfill the command of Jesus Christ. "This is My commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command." John 15:12-14.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

"There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven." Ecclesiastes 3:1

In Psalm 139:16 NLT says; "You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in Your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed." God knew you before you were born, He knows the length of your life and He has it recorded in His book. That's right your name, and the number of your days and God has them recorded, and all of that took place; before you were born!

"We need to be energetically at work for the One who sent Me here, working while the sun shines. When night falls, the workday is over." John 9:4 MSG. Since no one knows the day that holds their last sunshine how much more should we, like Jesus, concern ourselves with the work that was given us to do? Night time could be closer than any of us think and once it comes we are out of time to do anything! The time for you and me to complete the purpose God has for our lives. Jeremiah 29:11.

As I take some time to meditate on what could be remaining to do in my life that I know because God's Word tells me, that His will is applicable to all regardless of our individual purposes. So here goes, if as you are reading this you knew that today was your last day, what would you do?

* Have you delayed asking Jesus Christ to forgive your sins, to come into your heart and be Lord over your life? Today is the day if you hear His voice do not harden your heart.

* Is there anyone that you have not forgiven? It doesn't matter what they did, it isn't important if they never asked for forgiveness...forgive them now, today.

* Is there someone in your life past or present who has made a difference for good? It might be a family member, or a teacher or a pastor, or friend, or even a total stranger. If you haven't thanked them yet, do it today, while you still can. Reach out and encourage them as they encouraged you.

* Don't leave this earth without encouraging someone yourself. Be an agent for good in someone else's life. Encourage your grandchildren, your sons or daughters and their mates, your husband or wife.

* Most important of all don't go before the presence of God empty handed. Fulfill the great commission as found in Acts 1:8. Share the Good News of Jesus Christ with someone who is lost, pray with them to be saved and born again. Don't put this off another day for today may be your last day or the last day of the person God wants you to share Him with.

One thing that is burning in my heart right now is the importance of immediate obedience to do what God tells us to do when He tells us to do it! Remember, He has all of our days written down in His book, He knows the years, months, weeks, days, hours and minutes, even seconds remaining, so when He prompts us to reach out and do any of those things listed above or any other thing, do it now while you have breath remaining in you and the sun is still shining...

"My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts. says the LORD. And My ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so My ways are higher than your ways and My thoughts higher than your thoughts." Isaiah 55:8-9 NLT

I'm not really sure when God first revealed the Title Scripture to me but it became the foundational nugget of truth that led me to the realization that the times that I doubted God were the times that I was bringing Him down to the level of my brain and its understanding! If God is small enough to fit into my brain no wonder I had doubts!

Let me explain, our brains are wonderful of course, for God created them! But they are finite, God is infinite!! Our brains are limited to understanding and relating to the things we can see, hear, taste, smell and touch! Our brains are also capable of going above and beyond those five senses into belief in God, and His Son Jesus Christ through the avenue of faith.

But it cannot stop with belief in God, we must seek Him in His Word to know Him and His ways, if we don't do that then we are limiting God with boundaries that only exist in our minds! What a dangerous and foolish way for a believer to live! Is it any wonder that so many people that call themselves Christians are living way below what God has planned for them, they don't know the Scriptures and so they remain as they were when they got saved. How sad, they don't have much of a prayer life because they have no idea what God can and will do!

There are certain passages in Scripture that are "must reads" for those believers that long to know and see God as He truly is. Of course we can never know Him completely, but we have enough revealed to us in His Word, that if we studied those passages it would be enough to conquer all the doubt, fear and anxiety in everyone of us!

Is your idea of God small enough to fit into your brain? Do you run to the Internet for information rather than seek the One who put wisdom into the mind of man? Do you base your decisions on the advise of man rather than the One Who made you, the One Who has a plan for your life? Then please seek God in the following Scriptures and allow His truth to permeate your mind and saturate your soul. If you meditate on Him as revealed in just the following two portions of Scripture you will find and discover that your God is Amazing, Glorious, All Powerful, Magnificent, Majestic and Holy!!!

Job chapters 38 thru 40 I read at least 12 times a year. Those chapters are great to share with your children, everyone can relate to a sunrise, sunset, and ocean waves, but who is Sovereign over them? The LORD!! Learn about various animals in Job 39 and 40, Who made them, Who cares for them, Who is constantly observing them?

Isaiah 40:3-31 reveals the greatness of God; "He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in." Isaiah 40:22. Read the first sentence again, He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth...The book of Isaiah was written over 700 years before Christ, close to 3000 years ago. When Columbus discovered America in 1492 people of the world still believed that the earth was flat! How big is your God now...

Monday, March 12, 2012

"The LORD directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives." Psalm 37:23 NLT

The longer I serve the Lord the more convinced I become that God is more interested in the "little" acts of kindness shown to others in our daily lives than in the so called big things we do that are public. Matthew 6:1; "Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven."

Today's Title verse says "God delights in every detail of their lives." God is intimately involved in the details of our lives; He sees and hears you in prayer for others, He watches as you write a card of encouragement to someone He put on your heart. He listens as you speak His Word to another to strengthen them, to remind them of God's faithfulness, as you encourage their heart. He watches as you give your tithe, as you give to needs that He has made you aware of. He carefully observes as you share the gospel with the lost. And the angels of heaven rejoice when a lost soul is saved. God watches when no one else does! God eyes are on you when you tell your children about Jesus Christ, when a husband loves his wife, when a wife shows respect for her husband.

Jesus said in Matthew 10:42 NLT; "And if you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of My followers, you will surely be rewarded." Matthew 25:37-40 "Then these righteous ones will reply, Lord, when did we ever see You hungry and feed You? Or thirsty and give You something to drink? Or a stranger and show You hospitality? Or naked and give You clothing? When did we ever see You sick or in prison and visit You? And the King will say, "I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these My brothers and sisters, you were doing it to Me."

The other day I read a previously recorded interview of Mother Theresa. The interviewer asked how she could live day in and day out among the dying poor in Calcutta? She replied, when I lift a homeless leper in my arms and carry them to our home, I begin to take off their filthy wraps and clean what is left of their hands or feet or face and as I am doing this, all the while I know that it is blessed Jesus that I am touching!

That is the key to any service public and private, we are prompted by the love of Christ and with the knowledge that to reach out to another in His name is to touch and minister unto Him. Then, with eyes only on Him it removes the temptation to spotlight yourself, it strips us from craving the applause of men, because our motivation is to please God alone. Complaints that all too often accompany service fall away because we no longer expect anything from anyone else, least of all praise.

Be faithful in the small details, in the hidden service, satisfied with the knowledge that as you touch others in His name, one by one you are touching Him.

"God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another...Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to Him forever and ever! Amen." 1 Peter 4:10-11.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

"The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners." Isaiah 61:1 NASB

Liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners, this is the heart of God revealed, to set His people free, liberating those who are held captive; literally as well as emotionally and physically! And He tells us all about this liberty in His Word. "Sanctify them in the truth, Your Word is truth." John 17:17. "If you continue in My Word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free." John 8:31-32. Praise God!!!

Freedom is a good gift from God! I love the fact that He will never stop until every shackle, every bond, every lie has been destroyed in our lives! Read the following examples of liberty.

Freedom from physical bonds. A woman who had suffered for 18 years, bent doubled over, came into Jesus sight; "When Jesus saw her, He called her over and said, "Dear woman, you are healed of your sickness!" Then He touched her, and instantly she could stand straight. How she praised God!" Luke 13:12-13 NLT.

Freedom from anxiety. "Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful." John 14:27.

Freedom from sin (including addictions). "But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life." Romans 6:22.

Freedom from fear. "Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10.

Freedom from evil and the Evil One. "Now after He had risen early on the first day of the week, He first appeared to Mary Magdalene, from whom He had cast out seven demons." Mark 16:9. Read for yourself the account as written in Luke 8:27-28, 33 & 35. "You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world." 1 John 4:4.

Freedom from fiery furnace. In Daniel 3, three young Hebrew men were cast bound into a fiery furnace, the preincarnate Jesus joins them in the midst of the furnace and the three walked out of the furnace, free of shackles, not a hair singed, not even the smell of a fire was on them, they were free! (Daniel 3:21,23-25)

Freedom from prison. The apostle Peter; Acts 12:5, 7, 11. The apostle Paul and Silas; Acts 16: 23-26.

Thank You Lord for freedom and liberty that are found in Your Word, that are ours in Jesus Christ! Don't stop until we are totally free to be Your bond servants!!!

Friday, March 9, 2012

"Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart; for I am called by Your name, O LORD, God of hosts." Jeremiah 15:16 NASB

Today's Title verse is my life verse. For my Lord leads me to His Word and I devour it. And now His Words, Scripture, is the joy and delight of my heart! I am so thankful to be called by God, not because I earned it, far from it, but because it pleased God to do so! Speaking of me, one godly young lady in my church told her husband, when she talks about the Word she is absolutely giddy! Guilty as charged!

Today I was thinking about how I would like my life to look in the remaining time that I have left on planet Earth. It has nothing to do with age, the truth for everyone of us is, before we were born God wrote down in a book the number of our days, Psalm 139:16.

Billy Graham has been quoted as saying; "Finding God's purpose for your life and doing it is one of life's greatest joys!" Amen!

God has a plan for each person that is born, and just as none of us is alike, so too are His plans all unique to us. "For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11 NLT.

First and foremost I desire to keep the greatest commandment and the second. "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Matthew 22:37,39.

A life characterized by confessing Jesus Christ as Lord to all, saved and lost alike. Sharing the Good News of the gospel of Jesus Christ thus fulfilling Jesus last spoken command on earth; "You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses..." Acts 1:8.

Always striving to "excel still more" 1 Thessalonians 4:1,10. Filled with zeal in keeping His commandments; Ezra 7:23. On fire for God in serving Him; "Never lag in zeal and in earnest endeavor; be aglow and burning with the Spirit, serving the Lord." Romans 12:11 Amplified.

My prayer is to live a life that is obedient to Christ and to His commands. "If you love Me, you will keep my commandments. He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him." John 14:15,21.

My goal is to be able to say as my Lord Jesus said to His Father, the words of John 17:4; "I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do."

John 17:4 is also my prayer for each and every member of my family for I know that if they glorify God and accomplish the purpose He has for their individual lives that they will have lives full of meaning, purpose, joy, peace, sacrifice, grace and goodness!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

"Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me." Romans 15:30 NASB

I just love the title Scripture for today! The words paint a beautiful visual of someone who is weak and struggling, a little bent over, shuffling along and then one by one others come along side and grab hold of the struggling one and they support them with their strength, the ones that go behind the weak one protect them from attack, and the ones in front remove obstacles from their path. Each one is a prayer prayed for the one in need.

I don't know anyone who cannot identify with the weak and struggling one at some point in their life and blessed is the one who knows Jesus as Lord and is a member of a Bible believing church, for they will have many who will join in their struggle by coming along side them and join them in their struggles through their prayers to God for them!

My Mother was what is known in Christian circles as a prayer warrior and she without even being aware of it taught me many life applications. For instance, we lived in different states and spoke on average once a week, yet without fail if I was going through difficulties, Mom would call and tell me that God woke her up in the night to pray for me! Many times I would respond that everything was alright even if it wasn't because I didn't feel like talking about it. She never pressed but we both knew that she knew that the Lord was never wrong, His timing is always precise, so she faithfully continued to pray for me. It was the same way with my brother and later with her grandchildren. This side of heaven I will never know how much her prayers influenced and intervened in all of her prayers on behalf of our family. I thank God for her faithful prayers. And I thank God for His watch care over me and my family!

I was blessed to be with her during the last two and half years of her life and I learned so much from her; if someone asks you to pray for them, don't just say, I will, pray for them right then, no matter where you are or what you are doing! This life application is infectious, the people that you pray for with them, many of them are now doing the same for others. Many times we can forget to pray for someone, certainly not intentionally it just happens. So pray right then with them it will surprise many and bless everyone, including you!

On several occasions over the past ten years I have asked the Lord to teach me to pray. And I can tell you right now that I am still very much a work in progress, I have so much yet to learn. Yet, I want to share some things that are such blessings in my life regarding prayer. First and foremost God helped me to hear His voice and trust in His voice and obey His voice then and there.

Let me give you an example; one time a believer named Theresa and I were studying the Word in my home and I heard God's voice in my mind (never have I heard God's voice audibly) and I knew I was supposed to stop right then and call the person He told me. I shared with Theresa and she began to pray for this person that we both knew while I called her. When she answered she was crying, she suffers with a disease that causes extreme pain and it was so bad right then she said she just cried out to God, if You are there, if You love me at all, help me now! And the second the words left her mouth she heard the phone ring and Theresa and I lifted her up in prayer over the phone and God of course heard and answered our prayer (the prayer that He had orchestrated)and touched her and the pain left immediately and completely!!

God blessed all three of us that day, He built the ladies faith that cried out to Him, by showing her how much He loved her, and was intimately involved in her life. He reinforced the truth of His Word that says "My sheep follow Me because they know My voice." John 10:4 and that truth was burned into me that day. Theresa was blessed by having her intercession for the lady answered in such a glorious way! Faith increased and praise and glory to God was proclaimed all around!

"I love the LORD, because He hears my voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live." Psalm 116:1-2 NASB.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

"To whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory." Colossians 1:27 NASB

Christ in you...what does that mean to you? What are the implications within that truth? Truth, if indeed you have been born again, through a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Truth, if you have believed in Jesus Christ to have your sins forgiven, if you surrendered your life to Him. If you have confessed with your mouth Jesus is Lord and you believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, then according to the truth of God's Word you are saved! When a baby is born, we rejoice at this birth knowing it is the beginning of his or her life here on earth. In the same way when we are born again our life in Christ, Christ within us, it is just the beginning!

Christ in you means that your old life is over, you were crucified with Christ and it is no longer you who live, but Christ lives in you and the life that you now live in the flesh you live by faith in the Son of God who loves you and gave His life for you. Galatians 2:20.

Christ in you means that you will never face a storm that will overcome you, you will never face an enemy that is stronger than Christ, you will never ever be alone again! Christ in you means on the darkest of days the Light of the World is within you, when you don't know what to do or where to turn, look within to the One who embodies Wisdom, the One who directs your steps! God is for you, who or what can ever prevail against God to harm you? No one and nothing!

In those times when it feels as though the world is caving in all around you, look to , Jesus, focus your mind and thoughts on Jesus words; "I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have perfect peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer (take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted!) For I have overcome the world. (I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.)" John 16:33 Amplified.

Christ in you means you have the Source of wisdom, the Prince of Peace, the Wonderful Counselor, and Almighty God! What can you think of that you lack? Nothing!

The most amazing thing is that, in Christ we who were once separated from God because of our sins have been washed clean, sins forgiven through the shed blood of the Lamb of God; Christ Jesus and we now have access into the very throne room of grace. We have peace with God in and through Jesus Christ!!

Until you understand what having Christ in you means, you don't yet know Him as you ought. You will never know Jesus better than you know the Word of God! Begin today to read God's Word every morning, meditate on it and obey it and in doing so you will grow in the wisdom and knowledge of Jesus Christ, and in the wisdom and knowledge of His will! That is the abundant life; Christ in you!!!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"For the Lord disciplines those He loves, and He punishes each one He accepts as His child." Hebrews 12:6 NLT

Let's read the following two verses that appear after today's title verse. "As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as His own children. Who ever heard of a child who is never disciplined by its father? If God doesn't discipline you as He does all of His children, it means that you are illegitimate and not really His children at all." Hebrews 12:7-8 NLT.

How many times have you heard a child of God say when they were going through some tough times, I am really under attack from the enemy? Or have you ever wondered why God wasn't answering your prayers, at least not the way you wanted Him to? Ever opened the Word of God and nothing spoke to you, you couldn't even remember what you just read? Or you prayed and you felt like your prayers didn't get beyond the ceiling or maybe not even that high? We have all experienced these things!

Could we be experiencing the discipline of the Lord? Yes! What brings on the discipline of the Lord? As with everything else we find those answers in the Word of God. Read the following and perhaps in one or more of the examples you will be convicted by the Holy Spirit within you.

There is never an acceptable reason for refusing to do what the Lord is telling us to do in Scripture. And as in the laws of our land, ignorance of the Law of God is no excuse! God gave us an incredible gift, His Word, Spirit breathed and useful for everything pertaining to our lives, Jesus Christ is on every page and He will reveal Himself to those who seek Him in its pages and to those who do what He commands.

What are some of His commands that many refuse to acknowledge let alone obey? Tithing, fasting, forgiveness, love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your mind, and all your soul, and love your neighbor as yourself, be good to those who mistreat you, and do not seek revenge, for vengeance is Mine, says the Lord. Seek first the kingdom of God, do not have any idols, do not serve money or you will be a slave to it.

Attitudes of the heart can bring much needed discipline from God; pride, rebellion, liars, lovers of the world, judgmental attitudes, and hardened hearts to name a few.

Almighty God did not give us the Bible to be ignored or treated as though it was a cafeteria, where we can grab a tray and pick out what pleases us and ignore what we don't want to do, or that our church says is for another dispensation! Only to load up on the desserts, those promises and blessings of God! And then we wonder why God feels so far away, seriously?

Lord may 2012 be the year of daily feeding on the "whole council" of the Word of God not picking or choosing what we feel like doing but rather doing what Your Word tells us to do, knowing that You are a Good God and everything You tell us to do is for our good. True wisdom is found hidden in Christ Jesus and blessed, joyful, peaceful and fulfilled is the child that plumbs the depths of Jesus love!

Thank You Father for Your divine discipline, help me to recognize when I am being disciplined so I can repent of my sin and be cleansed from all unrighteousness.

Monday, March 5, 2012

"That they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me." John 17:21 NASB

On one occasion a well known evangelist was asked how had he changed after serving the Lord so faithfully for so many years. He answered that he loved people more now than he ever had! 1 John 2:9; "The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now." And 1 John 4:20; "If someone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen." Finally, John 15:12; "This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you."

The test of a true disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ is, do I love others, not just the body of Christ but do I love those who are lost, do I have the Father's love for the unsaved in the world? And in reality that is a test as to whether or not we truly love God, by the way we answer the previous question.

The longer I walk with the Lord I realize more and more that my heart attitude towards the lost reflects the truth of a believers maturity in the Lord! How can we call ourselves believers in the Lord Jesus if we ignore or worse yet, judge those that do not yet know Him? Can we really convince ourselves that it is okay to never lead another soul to Christ, when Jesus commanded all of us to be His witnesses? Jesus' love can be heard in these words from Matthew 23:37; "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling." Do you hear the love and compassion for the people of that city, for the same people that would later, with hearts full of hate, cry out over and over again "Crucify Him"!

The believers that love the unlovely in the body of Christ do so because they are so aware of how unlovely they themselves are! Anyone can love the lovely, anyone can love those who love them back, anyone can love those who are useful to them, so what? Even the lost do that!

Jesus loved, touched, and embraced the lepers of His day, He loved His disciples when they denied Him, when they argued amongst themselves as to who was the greatest, He loved them, He never stopped, He prayed for them. And we who are disciples in 2012 look and act the same, yet Jesus loves us, and He will never stop loving us and He is praying for us in Heaven! Hebrews 7:24-25 NLT; "Because Jesus lives forever, His priesthood lasts forever. Therefore He is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through Him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf."

Father, forgive me for not loving as Jesus does, create in me a clean heart O, LORD a heart like His, full of love, mercy and compassion for others. A heart that knows that none of us deserve Your love, I didn't deserve Your love but while we were all sinners Christ died for the sins of the whole world, including mine! May I walk in His love today. In Jesus name. Amen.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

"Dear friends, don't be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot do any more to you after that. But I'll tell you whom to fear. Fear God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, He is the one to fear." Luke 12:4-5 NLT

If a person has a physical problem there are a plethora of doctors who are experts in their own fields; pediatrics, orthopedics, obstetrics, plastic surgery, geriatrics, gastrointestinal, and I'm stopping now because I think I may have misspelled some of these already and I'm sure you get the picture anyway. Sometimes all we need to do to start feeling better is to exercise, get moving and that not only helps physical problems but emotional problems as well. The Lord taught me that one time in my life when I was emotionally shot, I started exercising and it truly helped my outlook.

Beautiful music and beautiful words can touch our minds and hearts for good. Unfortunately, hate filled music and lustful words can do great harm in our minds and hearts. That is why we are told in Scripture, Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things."

When it comes to a persons soul health well, God alone has purview over our soul. Our soul is spirit and it is that part of us, that is created in the image of God, for God is spirit. And at death the body dies, and that which was dust returns to dust. But the soul of man lives forever, it never dies. If you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, then you will spend eternity with Him! Even if you reject Christ your soul will live forever but you will spend eternity separated from Jesus, in Hell. Because you made the choice to reject Him.

In the Psalms we read over and over that the Lord restores our soul. In Isaiah chapter 58 He revives our soul. Psalm 142, He brings our soul out of prison, in Psalm 143, my soul longs for the LORD. The LORD strengthens our soul, He delights our soul, He fills our soul with joy, He fills our soul with hope and peace.

Fear and hold in reverent awe He that creates a soul, who alone can save a soul, or cast it away from Him forever. The LORD God is His name!

Friday, March 2, 2012

"He then asked, "And you-what are you saying about Me? Who am I?" Peter gave the answer: "You are the Christ, the Messiah." Mark 8:29 MSG

Jesus'disciple, Simon Peter knew that Jesus was the Christ, the Messiah, that prophets of old had prophesied about for over a thousand years. Peter knew because the heavenly Father had revealed that to him. It got me to thinking how would I respond to Jesus question, "Who do you say that I am?" Jesus has many diadems, and many titles most of which I could name off the top of my head. But how many of those titles do I "know" Him as, meaning that I have personally experienced? This is a wonderful exercise for any believer in Jesus, because with each title that you have personal experience of you have that reason to praise and thank Him.

In my life God has blessed me abundantly! I have personal experience with Jesus Christ as; Savior, Redeemer, Deliverer, Lamb of God, Healer, Provider, Almighty God, Good Shepherd, Teacher, Friend, Potter, Vine Dresser, Emanuel, Wisdom, Comforter, Shield, Mighty Fortress, Wonderful Counselor and Prince of Peace! Thank You Lord, I will praise Your name now and forever through out eternity!!!

I have received from Him; lovingkindness, mercy, forgiveness, love, tenderness, grace, discipline, righteousness, hope, peace, joy, strength and every good gift in my entire life! Thank You Lord, I will praise Your name now and forever through out eternity!!!

God is my Rock, He is the desire of my heart, He is God and there is no other!

Of all of God's commands none can be better that this; He has given to believers the privilege and responsibility of telling the Good News, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with everyone all over the world. All we have to do is to confess Jesus as Lord and share with others what Jesus has done in our lives, that is our testimony. Then we take them to Jesus through the Holy Word of God. For example this is my favorite Scripture to go to when sharing Christ for it was these very verses that drew me to Him for salvation! Romans 10:9-11, 13!

"If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, "WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED." for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED."

Well,what are you waiting for...

Thursday, March 1, 2012

"So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace."" Romans 8:6 NLT

Here are the next two verses that go with today's title scripture. "For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God's laws, and it never will. That's why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God." Romans 8:7-8 NLT.

Another word for sinful nature is the flesh. One day the Lord really opened my mind and He gave me understanding of Romans chapter 8:1-14. At least what walking in the flesh looks like as compared to walking in the Spirit of God.

Walking in the flesh comes naturally since we are all born into the sin nature, it is like a default setting. Walking in the flesh is easy; my thoughts, actions, eyes are all focused on Me. I am the center of my universe. I'm living life my way, just like the song, its funny before I was born again and walking in the Spirit of God I really loved the lyrics of that song because it seems so appealing, being on the throne of my life sounded good but like all things of the world it wasn't as it seemed, it is another lie that ends up making us feel empty inside. Pursuit of wealth, power, prestige, also fall into that smoke and mirrors category.

When I am walking or being led by the Holy Spirit my thoughts, deeds, eyes are all focused on the Lord and being obedient to follow where He leads. As the Lord was showing me He made it simple so I could understand and I will attempt to share what He showed me.

The lesson involved revealing to me the way I interact with people, not just other believers but the unsaved people in my life. Generally speaking a life in the flesh is so self absorbed that there is very little room for other people except family members or unless you need them to achieve your own goals. If you are useful to me, I can be charming, if not I don't even see you. That sounds harsh but it is reality. There are two examples that I believe we can all relate to, the workplace or the grocery store. How often do you get involved with other shoppers or co-workers only if you need their assistance?

Walking in the Spirit is like all of a sudden instead of seeing people in shades of gray it is like they are all in living color! You are actually seeing people and you have a desire to reach out to them, as you are shopping, you notice a puzzled look on someone's face and you ask if you could help them, the person in the power cart is struggling to reach a shelf and you just hand it to them, or standing in line you help the person behind you unload their cart, you ask the cashier how they are doing and really listen, you offer to pray for them, in the parking lot you help an older lady to unload her cart into her car and put up her cart. The examples could continue, what has happened is that God is giving you His eyes for others! In the work place it is even easier, it is acknowledging others, encouraging and assisting people that can't do a thing for you or for your career. It is giving someone praise in front of their peers, or it is offering to pray with a co-worker that is really struggling. It is taking the time to help others to achieve their goals! It's coming along side a person in need instead of walking right past them as though they didn't even exist!

Everyday that we choose to be led by the Spirit becomes a day ripe with opportunities that have eternal consequences! "For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God." Romans 8:14 NASB.