|Posted on June 21, 2019 at 7:15 PM||comments (0)|
May the LORD show you His favor and give you His peace. Numbers 6:26
Seeking favor today Father. Not for myself but for someone dear to me. You have been with me and given me so much in this life and I know you want the same for all You call to be Your children so I come in behalf of those in need. You said by Your Word we would be “rich in favor and full of the LORD’s blessings”. This person I am praying for is just beginning to see and notice You in these ways. Just the other day you heard them say “I knew He was able but I didn’t know just how strong He really was.”
Reminding me of our ancestor Job when he said to You in 42:5 “I had only heard about You before, but now I have seen You with my own eyes.” I said to them You have always been with us we just didn’t notice it before. We just didn’t have the eyes to see You and now that You have brought us out of the darkness and into Your wonderful light we see You all around us, everywhere, every day, in everything and we walk around like children in a fascinating place wondering does everyone else see as we see. How can people not know He is here. He has made Himself known to me.
Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make Him known. Psalm 19:2
Make Your ways be known throughout the earth, Your saving power among people everywhere. Psalm 67:2
You said in Your Word “no misfortune is in your plan for us. No trouble is in store for us. For You the LORD our God are with us. You have been proclaimed our King.” Numbers 23:21 every no is not Your withholding anything good from me as the world had taught me, if anything you are holding me out for something more. Something greater than I could ask or think and like a child on Christmas morning I wait with eager anticipation where it is You will lead me for I trust in You.
He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what He has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD. Psalm 40:3
Father, as Your Word has said “my life is an example to many for you have been my strength and protection.” Psalm 71:7 You have given me a new life and shown me the wonders of Your unfailing love. Nothing can compare with all the wonderful things You have done for me. Let your people see You work again as You did in days of old.
Let Your saving power be made known. Let them know it has not weakened or failed. Let people be amazed in silent awe because I know that you are doing something new in our day something we wouldn’t believe even if someone told us. Habakkuk 1:5 I know this because my life is living proof of that promise and I want so much for it to be the same for others. The only reason I can come boldly to Your throne and even lift my head to ask these things is because my brother came before me and washed me clean of anything and everything that would separate me from Your Holy Presence. So now I ask as a child to my Father to do what we can’t do, to be who we can’t be, to take us places we never thought we could go. All glory be to You God my Father by the name Jesus gave to me, your precious daughter. Amen!
|Posted on June 20, 2019 at 10:55 AM||comments (0)|
Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. 1 Corinthians 9:24-25
I am on a mission today. I have set a goal before me that I hope to accomplish. It doesn’t make it different from every day. Each day I have a set of things I would like to accomplish before my day is done. If I get it all done Yay! If not I shall not feel defeated I will rise again and add it to my list of things to do tomorrow and try again. The LORD is so great in His mercy each day I wake He allows me to try again. To reach the prize I am aiming for the eternal prize of His presence. Whether I live here on earth or in heaven with Him. He is my goal He is what I look forward to and look for here on earth.
So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 1 Corinthians 9:26
Every hour has a purpose leading up to the winding down hours I have this day before me and I don’t want to waste it. I may not get another chance to get this day right but I will get out of bed and purposefully try to make it a good one. Try to do the things I set out to do. I will not let the spirit of distraction steal the precious time God has given me today because this is all I have been given to make the most of. To do the most with.
Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Ephesians 5:16
My day becomes a wasted day of evil when I use it doing things that aren’t pleasing to God. When I am in the fourth hour of a marathon video game or the 3rd season of a binge watching episode I didn’t get to see first run. I can make today evil or I can give this day to God. I have a choice before the day begins how I want to spend it. Like money if I don’t tell these hours what to do, what needs to be done they will whisked away in the wind and I would have nothing to show for it but a single wasted day.
Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do. Ephesians 5:17
To act thoughtlessly is not to plan ahead. To squander this time I have been given as if I have an abundance of time. Even the wealthy man takes account for every penny. If time is my wealth the words “wasting time” should not be a part of my vocabulary. As Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 3:1 “There is… a time for every activity under heaven.” What I do today, I may not see the end result of but what I do for a lifetime I may see the result of a very good life not plentiful days of evil that when added up resulted in an evil life.
My child, listen to me and do as I say, and you will have a long, good life. Proverbs 4:10
I heard it once said there is more joy to be found in a day when we had much to do and did it all than in a day where there was nothing to do and we chose to do nothing with it. Just as the sun races across the sky I must start my race soon. Take my position on the start of today. On His mark, I get ready, I am set and as soon as I hear the bell it is time to go till I have finished the tasks He set before me today. And like the sun I will set, catch my breath and rest and rise again tomorrow.
|Posted on June 18, 2019 at 11:40 AM||comments (0)|
“Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live! You can make this choice by loving the LORD your God, obeying Him, and committing yourself firmly to Him. This* (Or He) is the key to your life. And if you love and obey the LORD, you will live long in the land the LORD swore to give your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” Deuteronomy 30:19-20
From the moment I wake I have a choice between life and death. Between the Word and the world. Between serving myself and serving others. Heaven and earth are my witnesses. Silently they stand and watch every move I make from the moment I open my eyes. They see as I see they hear as I hear. Even the very thoughts that run through my mind do not go unnoticed by the world. It doesn’t matter what I drink or the food I put in my mouth (Romans 14:17) what matters is what I choose to feed my mind for breakfast? Do I seek the Word for my daily bread? Do I quench my thirst with the Scriptures? Or do I look at my phone, check my messages, play a game do I allow my mind to feed on just anything, hear anything or I am purposely intent that the first thing I will see, the first thing these eyes will see, this mind will chew on is Him in His Word.
There was a time when the first words I heard my mind speak were my feelings. No praise was found. No gratitude was given. I would hear the alarm. I would moan about how tired I was before my day begun how little sleep I felt I got. I would complain about how my body ached. I would reach for my, phone check my messages, maybe play a game to take my mind off the mundane. Read the latest headlines on the internet ticker and when I didn’t get my fill of this world I would turn on the TV. Drown out the quiet. I would turn on the radio listen to a morning show. Make me laugh DJ I need to feel joy before drudging through my day. Show me something interesting on TV fill my mind with the latest news. These people have no clue I am watching them and I had no clue I was being watched by Him. I have a choice.
I can make this choice by loving Him choosing Him first. Being more concerned of His needs above my own. Obeying His Words by committing my life to Him. Being mindful that the only reason I was allowed to open my eyes to this day is because He isn’t finished with me yet. Seeking His will for my life, asking Him what He would have me do, where He would have me go. Taking responsibility for the time I have and the life I have been given knowing that today is one day less than the day before.
This is the key to my life. He is the key to my life. Not my phone, not the internet, not the radio. Choosing to start each day with Him is what is going to make this a great day or break this day. What if I was dead? What if in my sleep I was dead to the world around me I neither saw or heard it, the world was dead to me. Those sleeping hours between darkness and the light of a new day was how the world collapsed around me burying me in a dark tomb of sleep. If He decided to snatch my breath, stilled this beating heart I was powerless to stop it, it would all come to an abrupt end. Would I complain of the lost sleep I had, would I murmur about an aching body. Or would I do as I have done and wake seeking life in His Word would I wake from my slumber and search for Him. Would my mind go to verses in my heart.
I have studied His Word and continue to study it as though my life depended on it, because I know that it does. I don’t have to have a book in front of me to know He has spoken. I don’t need to read a Scripture in front of me to know it exist. His Words are planted in my heart. This hope I have of God will be on my lips and in my mouth.
I may not be able to quote the exact address of where each Scripture is found without searching for it first. When my brother Jesus was tempted in Matthew and Luke 4:4 he didn’t tell Satan “In Deuteronomy 8:3 it says” he simply said “The Scriptures say”. So though I am alone my mouth will say never will He leave or forsake me. Though at times I feel uncared for I will say God cares for me, He carries me in His arms each and every day in His arms. Though I lay in darkness I will say The LORD is my light and my salvation, I am not afraid for God is with me. Though I am in need I will say God supplies all my needs according to His riches and glory. I have everything I need to live a godly life. Though many come against me I will say that God is for me, greater is He in me than he that is in this world, He will fight my enemies, there are more on my side than there are on theirs, this is not my battle but the LORD’s.
“But this is the new covenant I will make with people of Israel on that day,” says the LORD. “I will put My instructions deep within them, and I will write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.” Jeremiah 31:33
I will raise up a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites. I will put my word in his mouth, and he will tell the people everything I command him. I will personally deal with anyone who will not listen to the messages the prophet proclaims on my behalf. Deuteronomy 18:18-19
Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me. I am telling you these things now while I am still with you. But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative- that is, the Holy Spirit- he will teach you everything and remind you of everything I have told you. John 14:23-26
|Posted on June 17, 2019 at 11:20 AM||comments (0)|
Two by two they came into the boat, representing every living thing that breathes. Genesis 7:15
The other time the word combination “two by two” is used in Mark 6:7 “And (Jesus) called his twelve disciples together and began sending them out two by two, giving them authority to cast out evil spirits.” When I read this I think to myself that God did not want me to walk this faith alone. This way of life was meant to be shared with others not kept to myself. That I would have the companionship and fellowship of other brothers and sisters who walk with the LORD.
Search the book of the LORD, and see what He will do. Not one of these birds and animals will be missing, and none will lack a mate, for the LORD has promised this. His Spirit will make it all come true. Isaiah 34:16
A mate is not just a physical partner, a person you share intimacy with. A mate can also be a friend or companion. My favorite part of my day is when I get to share His Word with people of like mind and purpose, one on one. Listen to how God has revealed His Word to them and share the way I see it without fear of judgement just a meeting of the minds.
I have met few people on my walk since coming to know Christ that are able to speak Word to me. To hold their end of a conversation with the same passionate conviction Christ had. When I am troubled it feels more powerful to have someone speak Gods wisdom over me than empty clichés that come from this world. I want someone who can quote Scripture to me, remind me that God is with me through His Word.
…God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with His comfort through Christ. Even when we are weighted down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation! For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer. We are confident that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in the comfort God gives us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-7
|Posted on June 15, 2019 at 11:00 AM||comments (0)|
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. Isaiah 41:10
Yesterday was a roller coaster of a day…I went in it with eager expectation and as the hours past, I felt good about where it might lead. The time came to find out the long awaited news and everything seemed promising. I was elated with the news that the possibility was inevitable. Then within the next hour the mood changed. I thought nothing could hinder the progress made, we were almost at the finish line but something came up that wasn’t expected and with the news in hand we all sat at the dinner table like we had just been hit by a car. We didn’t see it coming. We had no clue. Now the only thing to do is continue to wait on an answer that could very well be no.
It took me a moment to gather up my courage. To pick up my confidence from the floor. To remember my God. Even my ancestor David had to pick himself up on the inside several times in times in Psalms 42:5-6, 42:11 and 43:5 “Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again- my Savior and my God!”… Now I am deeply discouraged, but I will remember You…
The venture we went on yesterday was not our God. The answer to our question was not our God. The hope in the expectation wasn’t even our God. God is still on the throne. God is still our God. Don’t be discouraged He said for I am your God. I am still your God. My plans for you are still good. The future and the hope I have for you still stands. It just may not be the way you wanted it to. The way you hoped it would. My thoughts are greater than your thoughts. My ways are greater than your ways. I have another way for you to be successful. I have another plan to make you succeed. When the answer is no it is not because I have lost my saving power. It is not because I am keeping good things from you.
Some times when I say no it is to save you from harm, I see things you cannot see. Sometimes it is because I have something greater in mind and what you want is not my best for you. I love you, you are dear to me, I want what is best for you and sometimes what I want for you is not the same as your want for you so the answer is sometimes no. Do not pout like little children who do not get their way. If I gave you everything you could ever wanted it would not lead you to me, it would lead you further away. Trust in me. Trust that I still hold you. That I still have a good life planned for you. Trust that my strength will sustain you and I will help you get to where I want you to be your job is to follow me. Don’t forget that I am the God who encourages the discouraged (Colossians 3:21) so do not be afraid.
|Posted on June 13, 2019 at 6:40 PM||comments (0)|
Don’t be intimated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself. Philippians 1:28
When thoughts of doubt and dread fill my thinking when defeat and discouragement come to mind like a flood it’s hard to stay consciously aware that I am feeding this negative spiral instead of saying things God said of me. Take this verse for example when doubt can be intimidating instead of standing on the promises of God I begin to play the “what if” game with every worst case scenario in my head instead of the best case outcome. I wish it was automatic for me to think what if I got the things I hoped for. What if things turned out the way I want them to but instead I think the opposite of these things.
Often times it takes me a moment to close my eyes, listen to my breathe as I breathe in His Word and out the worry with a prayer of surrender I say something like: Father, I trust in You. I trust in Your plan for my life. You know my needs. You know my wants. Your will for me is good and pleasing and perfect even if it isn’t the will I would choose for myself I know that You are with me and that is what matters. You will guide me along the best pathway for my life. This is not the end of my story You are the author and finisher of my faith. You will see to it that this Temple, this mind and body that You reside in is built up correctly. Your mercies are new each day. This is my new beginning of the life I have in You.
When I remind myself of His Word of things He said of me I don’t doubt His plan is good. I don’t dread that misfortune is part of His plan for me. I am victorious not because of anything that does or doesn’t happen. I am victorious because Christ already died for me, he tasted death and lived to say that even the worst case scenario in death is not His plan for me. I may have to go through some things that are uncomfortable. I may have to work through some things that are difficult. But they all serve for His greater good, His greater purpose for me. The Spirit cuts between bone and marrow. It separates the wants of this flesh from His Spirit in me. He wants nothing more but to make me stronger in Him, have more self-discipline, more self-confidence so I can do the things He sent me to do. This life is not for the weak, the timid, the insecure or afraid.
For every child of God defeats this evil world and we achieve this victory through our faith. 1 John 5:4
I don’t defeat the dreadful thoughts by counting on my own abilities. I don’t defeat discouraging statements by continuing to believe the negative things of me. I defeat the things of this world by speaking words of faith that God spoke over me. The stories of how my ancestors crossed rivers, took down walls, slayed giants, defeated their enemies with God. The same God that was with them yesterday is the same God that is with me today. He has not lost His saving power I just lost sight of Him when I took my mind off of His ways and thought about what if doubt,what if dread, what if defeat was in my future instead of remembering that no one ever defeated anything or anyone with that sort of mentality and I take back my thoughts and surrender them to the LORD.
|Posted on June 12, 2019 at 5:05 PM||comments (0)|
And Gideon built an altar to the LORD there and named it Yahweh-Shalom, which means “the LORD is peace”…Judges 6:24
There is a story in Judges 6 when Gideon was picked to be Israel’s Judge. It begins by saying that my ancestors did what was evil in the LORD’s sight and so He handed them over to their enemies for seven years. They were so cruel to my ancestors that they forced them to go into hiding in mountains, caves and strongholds. Slowly their enemies were starving my ancestors by taking their animals and destroying their crops till finally they cried out to the LORD for help.
In my own life there have been times when everything that could come against me was coming against me. I struggled to keep my peace at home, at work, in my family life, in my personal relationships. I couldn’t understand what was wrong. Why this was happening to me. It took me coming to the end of my rope to turn to God to cry out for His help. Just as my ancestors before me.
When they cried out, the LORD sent a prophet to tell them “I brought you out of slavery in Egypt. I rescued you from all who oppressed you. I drove out your enemies and gave you their land. I told you, ‘I am the LORD your God. You must not worship the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you now live.’ But you have not listened to me.
Some keywords that stood out for me are God brought them out…He rescued…He drove out… He gave…He warned…. And still they did not listen to His warning. I kept falling in and out of God’s grace due to my own poor decision making. Me and my big mouth or my selfish acts would get me back into trouble. I would cry out to God when I needed an answer to prayer and once my prayer was answered I went right back to sinning right back to being who I was before I needed the help. I felt like okay God I am good, I got my life from here you can leave me alone now and like my ancestors I would forget about all the good things God had done for me and turn to worship another thing in this world and wonder why I kept getting sucked back into sin, into my old ways.
The angel of God appeared to Gideon while he was in hiding at the bottom of winepress, basically a well and hiding the little food they had from their enemies. The angel said to him “Mighty hero, the LORD is with you!” Gideon was hiding from his enemies, he did not appear to be mighty or a hero yet this is what the angel of the LORD told him. What made him mighty and a hero? The LORD was with him.
Gideon challenged the angels’ response with a barrage of rhetorical questions and said “if the LORD is with us, why is all this happening? Where are all the miracles our ancestors told us about? Didn’t they say ‘The LORD brought us up out of Egypt’? But now the LORD has abandoned us and handed us over to the Midianites.”
When I learned the LORD was with me, that the LORD called me all these wonderful things I found them hard to believe, hard to accept that He would call me these things and like Gideon my response was Oh yeah if I am who you say I am why has this happened to me? Why has my life been filled with all these horrible things? Why has it felt like the LORD has abandoned me in my misery?
God didn’t answer the questions, He didn’t give a reason or even an excuse that would justify all the pain and hurt Gideon and my ancestors had suffered He gave Gideon a command to “Go with the strength you have and rescue Israel from the Midianites. I am sending you!” Fear struck Gideon and immediately he said “But Lord, how can I rescue Israel? My clan is the weakest in the whole tribe of Manasseh, and I am the least in my entire family!”
God never told me why I lived the life I lived, why I struggled as I did, why I lived through so much heartache and pain. He simply commanded me to be still and know that He was…know that He was with me. That He had been with me through everything the enemy had put me through in this life that was meant to destroy God worked out and was working everything out for good for me. I also answered with a string of reasons why I should not be chosen to share His Word, all the ways I was unqualified to speak on His behalf.
The LORD said to Gideon “I will be with you. And you will destroy the Midianites as if you were fighting against one man.”
Something about knowing the LORD is with me put all my questions to rest, sets my heart at ease. Helps me to trust that everything will be as He said. If He says I can, I believe I can. If He says I will I believe it is done. His Word supersedes any word I hear the enemy whisper to me, all the doubt, dread, discouragement fall away at the sound of His Word.
Gideon needed proof of God’s Word and went to great lengths to make sure it was God speaking to him. All the proof I needed was my own life. I could look back on numerous examples of my life and see how the LORD was with me and had always been with me. There was no doubt He is and was with me in that moment. When Gideon realized that it was God speaking to him he became afraid. But God assured him “It is alright, do not be afraid. You will not die.” I was afraid because if God had seen me in this moment that meant He saw all my moments before this. The moments I was so ashamed of. The moments I was guilty. The moments I thought I was the god of my life. How could God speak to a wretched sinner like me, thank God for Jesus!
Gideon had been taught that those who heard God were sure to die because back in Exodus 20:19 that is what they believed so that is what they taught everyone who came after that moment in time. But I know that God sent His son so that I could come boldly before the throne without a single fault Colossians 1:22 I stand before Him clean and clear and know that my sins are covered by what Christ did for me and there is an indescribable peace that comes with that. The LORD is peace. When I am at peace, when there is peace that surrounds me, I know that He is with me and I need not be afraid for as Christ said in John 14:30 “the enemy has no power over me.” I know there is power in peace.
But all who listen to Me will live in peace, untroubled by fear of harm. Proverbs 1:33
|Posted on June 10, 2019 at 5:20 PM||comments (0)|
So take courage! For I believe God. It will be just as He said. Acts 27:25
God has said my life would consist of many things in His Word at this particular verse the apostle Paul was calming the prisoners telling those who were with him that God had granted them safety from the storm however the ship would go down. Hence the take courage part of the verse. Life is like that if I am coming out of a storm I am going into one or a storm is brewing in the distance. Often times the things I sought, counted on for refuge- my job, my friends, my family, my car, my house would be shipwrecked but forty something years of life has shown me that I was granted safety from every storm I have encountered.
We’ve been experiencing a daily steady stream of storms where I live and sometimes they hit us and other times they go around us. I use to be afraid of the storms both physical and metaphorical. My phone would blow up with warnings, the clouds would turn dark and the wind would blow the trees sideways but now I just take a deep breath and face the approaching storm. I now make it a point to enjoy the calm before the storm.
I take advantage of the early morning and afternoon hours so that when the storm does come later in the day it doesn’t ruin my perfectly good day. I seek God first thing in the morning so that if I don’t get a chance to seek Him later I have already been assured He is with me and will be my shelter in any storm. I have already done my running around, already did the things I wanted to do. Had I not made up my mind to plan ahead strengthen my spiritual disciplines instead of leaving things for later in the day or when trouble comes I would feel like it was always cloudy, always raining, every single day. All I would see is the storms in my life.
When the storms of life come…the godly have a lasting foundation. Proverbs 10:25
The rain will fall whether I seek God for shelter or not but the Word equips me not to be afraid of the rain. That it is passing. It is brief and it is as necessary in my life as it is in nature. I never noticed that the storm brings much needed rain to a parched land. That a storm in life makes me turn even more toward His Word, toward Him and away from the world and people in it. I am grateful for the storms because they cause me to stop and pay closer attention to what God is doing in my life. How He is redirecting my steps. He is my hiding place from storms the storms Isaiah 4:5-6; 25:4 both in nature and in life. So I take courage and believe that life will be just as God said it would, with storms.
Rather, the land you will soon take over is a land of hills and valleys with plenty of rain- a land that the LORD your God cares for. He watches over it through each season of the year! Deuteronomy 11:11-12
|Posted on June 9, 2019 at 11:40 AM||comments (0)|
You have endowed me with eternal blessings and given me the joy of Your presence. Personal Psalm 21:6
You hide me in the shelter of Your presence, safe from those who conspire against me. You shelter me in Your presence, far from accusing tongues. Personal Psalm 31:20
Do not banish me from Your presence, and don’t take Your Holy Spirit from me. Psalm 51:11
For You have rescued me from death; You have kept my feet from slipping. So now I can walk in Your presence, O God, in Your life-giving light. Psalm 56:13
Happy are those who hear the joyful call to worship, for they will walk in the light of Your presence, LORD. Psalm 89:15
The children of Your people will live in security. Their children’s children will thrive in Your presence. Psalm 102:28
I can never escape from Your Spirit! I can never get away from Your presence! Psalm 139:7
Surely righteous people are praising Your name; the godly will live in Your presence. Psalm 140:13
This morning I was reminded how important it is to begin each day in the presence of my Father. Just bathing in His presence by soaking up a few lines of His Word a day. My favorite part of my morning is when I get to hear and share my thoughts with H. We discuss how we both see the same thing differently. I don’t believe one religious group, one person can hold all the answers. I believe that He gave a little here, a little there to everyone across the globe and that in order to worship and know Him more fully we would have to continually seek to understand Him in the way others see and understand Him.
Like the Tower of Babel story found in Genesis 11 when everyone spoke the same language. They abused that power by making a building that would reach the heavens and make them infamous. Can you imagine if one religion claimed to know all the answers. That one person in the world had such a relationship with God that God only spoke to Him and to no one else that they didn’t need the help of others. The Word says in the story of Babel God gave them different languages so that they wouldn’t be able to understand each other. There are over 6000 languages spoken in the world. I believe we are like an incomplete puzzle each holding a piece of the puzzle but we are not the whole picture we need each other to understand the whole message. And we need the Spirit of God to show us how those pieces fit.
Anyone who claims to know all the answers doesn’t really know very much. But the person who loves God is the one whom God recognizes. 1 Corinthians 8:2-3
Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and the teachers. Ephesians 4:11
Imagine if I based my entire belief of Jesus on the book of Matthew without reading the different perspectives of his life story from Mark, Luke or John. Or only read the book of Ezekiel and not Jeremiah or Isaiah. I don’t have an understanding of the Word because I heard it from one teacher or one pastor read it from one book.
I do follow one message that Jesus is the son of God. He is the only one on earth that ever died for my sins. He took the penalty of a torturous death that the world said I deserved for the things that I did. He calls me his. I am a child of God just as he is a child of God. Being born a human being makes me His child. I received the Holy Spirit of God in me the moment I truly believed in his son and what he did. That is the only reason I am able to believe in who I am. But I didn’t learn that from one person, I learned it by listening to the different perspectives of many even when I disagreed with one message I still listened to them all. Observed how they saw truth to find His truth in me.
Paul taught me that I should be of “one mind, united in thought and purpose” but not because of one religious faction. As he taught in 1 Corinthians 1:13 Has Christ been divided into factions?...did he only die for the Baptist, only died for Catholics, only died for the Lutherans. My brother died for people, he died for me, so I could have a relationship with my Father not so I could have a religion or a religious practice to get to Him. The blood of Jesus covers my guilt and shame that separated me from knowing my Father. A guilt that made me believe I was unworthy of His love. Unworthy of being called his sister, His daughter. A shame that made me hang my head and not be counted as a member of His family.
So don’t boast about following a particular human leader. For everything belongs to you- whether Paul or Apollos or Peter or the world, or life and death, or the present and the future. Everything belongs to you, and you belong to Christ and Christ belongs to God. 1 Corinthians 3:21-23
Everything belongs to me, the Word in its entirety, the apostles stories, the testimony of the many people whose lives were changed like Paul’s life was changed when he met Jesus, the pastors who study the Word and its meanings, the teachers who seek to help me gain a greater understanding. I can’t get these things from one place, one person. That would be like using the World Wide Web to check my email only when I have so much more information at my fingertips and closing my mind off to knowing anything else. How foolish that would be of me.
Wisdom will multiply your days and add years to your life. If you become wise, you will be the one to benefit. If you scorn wisdom, you will be the one to suffer. Proverbs 9:11-12
|Posted on June 8, 2019 at 6:15 PM||comments (0)|
You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of Your presence and the pleasures of living with You forever.* (In Greek You have shown me the way of life, and You will fill me with the joy of Your presence.) Psalm 16:11
I walked through a market today just to get out and enjoy the cool morning weather in the morning before the sun was at its’ highest peak. I came across a beloved character I adored in my young adult years, Tigger. They had blankets, umbrellas, pillows, stuffed animals, back packs. I was asked if I still collected Tigger items I nodded and said no and it made think of the reason why.
My Father had shown me later in my walk of faith that Tigger was an idol to me. Tigger brought me joy. Just to see a Tigger item and own it and hold it in my hand filled me with such joy. I was well into my thirties at the time. I believed before knowing Christ that if I surrounded myself with Tigger if I had an abundance of Tigger items I would be filled with the joy I was missing a joy that had not been complete or filled till I sought God. The truth is my joy now comes from knowing the LORD is with me that I am no longer alone.
Not from a stuffed animal, not from a t-shirt I wore or blanket that kept me warm. Not from the necklace or the earrings I adorned. Not from the mug, the water bottle, the child size drinking glass I drank from, the key chain or my purse. My joy did not come from these things at all. My joy came from the LORD. I still have a few Tigger things like a single coffee mug, a pen I don’t use and a thimble in my jewelry box. But to glance, to look you would never know that I was once obsessed by this cartoon character.
This verse above reminds me that my Father has shown me the way of life, it is seeking Him, being obsessed about Him, the same joy I once felt for an inanimate object that had no feeling to care or even know that I exist is now the joy I receive from my Father. A field of flowers is far greater than a bouquet. The cool breeze that precedes the rain on a warm summer day feels better than the air condition in my car. A Father that can carry me through the storm, fill me with more joy than I have ever known is better than any manmade object I could ever own.
The poor, deluded fool feeds on ashes. He trusts something that can’t help him at all. Yet he cannot bring himself to ask, “Is this idol that I am holding in my hand a lie?” Isaiah 44:20