Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Destroy lack in your life

During biblical times, the people had a good idea of how kings reigned and what it meant for someone to have their own kingdom. But Jesus did not come as the Kings of this world.  His method of reigning is very different.

Matthew 20:20-28
Greatness Is Serving20 Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Him with her sons, kneeling down and asking something from Him.
21 And He said to her, “What do you wish?”
She said to Him, “Grant that these two sons of mine may sit, one on Your right hand and the other on the left, in Your kingdom.”
22 But Jesus answered and said, “You do not know what you ask. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?”[a]
They said to Him, “We are able.”
23 So He said to them, “You will indeed drink My cup, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with;[b] but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared by My Father.”
24 And when the ten heard it, they were greatly displeased with the two brothers. 25 But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. 26 Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. 27 And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave— 28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

As I think about these scriptures, I imagine the disciples were taken aback by what Jesus said.  What Jesus was describing was not the life they anticipated as a disciple of the "King of kings".  They were thinking about power and status, not serving.  I think this still happens to many of us today.  Things often times don't end up looking like the way we expect them to as a disciple of Christ.  I don't think the disciples jumped up for joy at what Jesus had just said to them.  I don't think they were able to experience that serving was better than being served until years later.  It is important to allow the Holy Spirit to penetrate our value system, so we can continue to grow and become spiritually mature.  It's very uncomfortable when Christ shows you that "success" in the kingdom of God is defined differently than "success" is defined in the world and even within the church at times.  We are all guilty, at times, of having this "all about me" mentality.  We even pass that on to our kids by catering to them too much.  That makes child rearing difficult; and many couples decide to not have children because of it.   But I am just starting to realize that my getting over this "all about me mentality" will also help my kids.  Reading these scriptures today, has shown me also how important it is for me to stop revolving so much around them.  They will have way more joy in their lives, if life doesn't revolve around them.  But it starts with me and allowing the Holy Spirit to turn my "all about me" mentality on it's back.  Then I won't pass it on to my kids.  2 major things come to mind that are necessary for our success as believers in Christ:
1.  Patience - If you don't want any lack in your life (James 1:4)
         -But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
     The question is "How do you get this patience, so you can get rid of the lack in your life?"   I'm going to tell you how...................be joyful when trouble comes.  It is the way you respond to trouble in your life, that decides what you will "produce" as a result.  If you want to produce "supply" in your life instead of "lack"  be joyful when trouble comes.

2.  Hope - If you don't want your faith to be shattered by disappointments in your life (Romans 5:5)
          -Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
       The question is "How do we get this hope?" The same way we get patience, respond to trouble with joy.  How do we respond to trouble with joy?.........................Don't focus on the trouble, put your focus on the fact that you have peace with God and that you have been declared righteous because of His grace.

Now you have very clear specific instructions from the word of God on how you can destroy "lack" in your life and how to respond to your trouble in a joyful way.  Embrace these instructions and don't be offended by them.  Understand that what Christ wants to give you is eternal.  What the world gives you is fleeting and temporary.  Choose the eternal over the temporal.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Proper Placement

It's so important that we don't look at the lives of other people and compare them to ours.  We shouldn't determine our level of blessing by someone else's pain or lack.  When you are believing God for something specific in your life, don't stop believing because someone else you know believed and didn't get it.  Don't stop believing because it didn't happen for someone else.  Don't stop believing until you stop breathing.  Faith and hope is just as important as breathing.  If you are not breathing it's hard to stay alive.  If you don't have faith and hope you are dead already. Let me give you an example:  The bible says that children are a gift from the Lord and they are a reward from Him.  Do you feel like God is rewarding you by giving you children?  Do you see children as a gift?  Many of us are at places in our lives where we need a new job, more money, a spouse to change their ways, some of us just need help.  Some of us are looking for direction in business and relationships.  Some of us are looking for that special person to share our lives with.  I have found that we have to prioritize our value system.  Many times peace, joy, grace, and mercy are on the bottom of our list of things we need instead of at the top.  But I'm finding that when I allow myself to be consumed with my temporary things that I need, I start to loose the eternal things like joy and peace.  When I re-focus on the really important things I don't get stressed out.  God wants us to have peace no matter what's going on in our lives.  How many things rob us of bits of our peace on a daily basis.  If that is happening, then that means you have given some things the wrong placement in your value system.  Don't get me wrong, God is interested in everything going on in your life and He wants to bless you in all those things, but He wants those things to be kept in their proper place in your value system.  If those things can rob you or your peace and joy, then their placement is wrong.   

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Divine direction

Many times in life we question when, the right time is, to do certain things.  Many of us can have quite a few different things we are juggling at one time and if we turn our attention to something else, even for a moment, one of those balls are going to get dropped.  When there are desires and visions in your heart, it's important that you not only wait for God's timing, but trust that He will not only let you know; but He will also inspire you to carryout, whatever it is you need to carry out.  Sometimes it's not that you don't believe God will do it, but you might not know if He is leading you or not.  Well, none of us is perfect in that area.  But what I will say is that God does not appeal to the senses as much as He appeals to the heart.  His voice is a small, steady voice inside you.  Many times  during my day, I stop to listen, to see what I'm hearing inside. I have quiet meditations with my heart,  that's why God says to "guard your heart with all diligence, for out of it flows the issues of life".  Practicing quiet meditations with your heart helps you to hear the small, still voice of the Holy Spirit in your life.  I've learned to pay attention to the steady messages in my heart, instead of the fleeting thoughts I have.  Something else to remember is that, normally whatever God has shown you for His plan for your life, there has already been a witness inside you of what that plan is for years.  After I got saved 13 years ago, a supernatural aptitude concerning certain areas of life began to emerge in me.  Some of these things were active in me before I accepted Christ, but there was no witness living on the inside of me, because I didn't have the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit acts as a witness, confirming the purposes of God for you life.  The Holy Spirit adds wisdom where there is none and direction where there is confusion.

I realize I have readers from all over the world and people online like to remain anonymous a lot of the times, but I'm hoping for opportunities to pray for some of you individually.  If you are at a crossroads and/or in desperate need of God's wisdom concerning an area of your life, don't remain anonymous. Take a step of faith and send your prayer request to the email address below.  I will join with you as a prayer partner to seek God's answers for your life. My email is below

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Seasons & Spice for life

When the shift happens.  What does the current season demand?  How many ways do we fight the season we are in?  What about the Winter time, it's cold and they are not conditions that promote much recreation outside of the home. Do we try to fight that by going out anyway or do we embrace it by staying inside and out of the cold, letting God have His way with that season?  What about the springtime , when the flowers are blooming and the weather is ideal for getting out into nature?  Do we lock ourselves indoors?  Is that what God wants?  The bible says to "everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven".  This is the first time in my life where I want to sit in every season, just the way God designed it, according to God's design.  I don't want to go against the "wind" by trying to go against the weather of that season.  It's like something shifted in me where the fight in me calmed down.  It's like all the sudden I have gotten real focused and not adding a bunch of other stuff to my plate. I don't think it's God's will for us to be going at the same pace all year around.  I don't think it's His will that we be focused on the same things all year around.  If not He wouldn't of created the different seasons, and the seasons would not change the landscape of nature the way it does.

Genesis 8:22
22 “While the earth remains,
Seedtime and harvest,
Cold and heat,
Winter and summer,
And day and night
Shall not cease.

 Even animals pursue different activity during different seasons.  We are not animals, but what happens in nature does give us insight into the mind of God.  That's why Solomon became the wisest man that ever lived.  You will notice that Solomon studied nature alot.  Look at "Songs of Solomon" it is a romantic book, but the backdrop of the book is in nature and He is well studied in the ways of nature.  You will also notice that the Queen of Sheba, in the book of Kings, heard of Solomon's fame and tested him with difficult questions, of which there were none too difficult for him. 

Many times we fight the seasons of our lives, we even fight the seasons in the lives of our children.  Living out the seasons of life according to God's plan is very important for us and it's important for us to allow our children to do that as well.  Some seasons are harder than others and require more patience than others.  Bur God will provide what you need for that season.  Children at very young ages can be very difficult at times and as parents we try to avoid difficulty, fix difficulty, rush through difficulty, and even remedy difficult stages of a young child's life.  I don't know if that's the right approach.  Our culture does this, the media does it.  I think these more challenging stages are purposed by God, to accomplish a purpose in us and our children.  I even think we do the same things in our own lives as adults.  We try to rush, avoid, and remedy things that should not be rushed, avoided, or remedied.  Just something to think about.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Refreshing? Renewing? Restoration? Anyone??

Ok,, I have spent a good part of my adult life, since getting married, trying to avoid getting burnt out.  Not that it's a bad thing, but now instead of being worried about burning myself out, I can count on God refreshing me.  There are so many things in life that we never try because of the costs, but there are times where God is saying "I'll cover the costs".  For me, I hate feeling drained and burnt out and with 2 children and other things going on in life, I'm finding that I'm getting drained more often.  At the same time, I know God doesn't want me to slow my pace in the direction where the Holy Spirit is moving.  He just wants me to come to Him when I need refreshing and wait on it, to give me what I need to get moving again.  I'm finding out that God doesn't want me to run away from getting drained or try to avoid it, He wants me to embrace it knowing that He will, in fact refresh me.  There are 3 key scriptures that God has used in my life when I am burnt out or drained.  This first one is the one that I started with, when I started experiencing burn out and lack of inspiration:

Isaiah 40:31New King James Version (NKJV)
31 But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.

God has taught me so much with the scripture verse above, but I think the key thing I learned is to "wait on the Lord".   The renewing of my strength didn't happen immediately.  There was a wait involved.  When you wait, you have to make sure you are waiting on the right thing or person.  Some people wait on the "T.V" to renew their strength.  Others might wait on the "spa" to renew their strength.  While still others might wait on "alchohol" to renew their strength.  Others might wait on their husband or wife to renew their strength.  I'm not saying these things are bad, but if it's strength you need, wait on the Lord to do it.  Make Him the object of your wait.   Sometimes you think you can keep it moving and somehow you will get some strength.  I find when I do that, I am very unproductive in the work that I try to do.  Many times I have to change my pace, so I can be in a waiting posture to get what I need from God, in order to keep being productive in my life and not counter productive.  It takes faith to wait on the Lord.  We have to believe that God will give us the strenth we need.  I find that when we don't believe that God will provide what we need, we tend to hoard what we have.  Like the guy, who buried his talents in the scriptures below:

The Parable of the Talents

14 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. 15 And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. 16 Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. 17 And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. 18 But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. 19 After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.
20 “So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ 21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ 22 He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’ 23 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
24 “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’
26 “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. 27 So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. 28 Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.

This is really causing me to examine myself to see what areas I am having doubts about God providing.  Normally when we think of provision we are thinking money, or food, or something like that.  But God provides so much more.  What about peace?  What about joy?  What about healing?  What about wisdom?  What about light?  What about companionship?  

Friday, January 9, 2015

Bad language???

 When you travel to a place where the language is different than your native language, you have to learn the language in order to live there and function.  It would be very difficult to survive, much less thrive there, if you don't know the language.  If you want to live there, you have no choice but to learn the language.  Well, the same is true in the Kingdom of God.  I believe God gives much evidence to the fact that living under Kingdom rule in this world requires a different language.  The evidence of speaking in tongues is one thing, but there is more:
Ephesians 5:19
19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 
Colossians 3:16
16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

I use to read these scriptures and be like "How do you do this?"  I mean it really almost sounds like you going to be walking around humming and singing all the time.  But I don't think that's what it means.  In Colossians, above, it says to let the Word of Christ dwell richly in you.  I have recently had to step back and evaluate some of my bad language.  I might not be speaking of the bad language you're thinking about.  But I think my bad language is actually worst than the string of curse words.  My bad language consists of the little negative things I speak into my own life on a daily basis.  My bad language consists more of the negative things I dwell on and then speak on.  Because I'm at a place where I want more of God's kingdom in my life, therefore I have to speak more of God's language.  God's language actually needs to become my new native tongue.   "Thy Kingdom Come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven".  Why did Jesus tell us to pray this?.  He would'nt have said to pray this if God did not want to bring it to pass.  Our language not only frames our life, but it drives our life.  Because we were all made in the image of God our words "create".  Our "invisible" words create our "visible" life.  Just like God made the heavens and earth by speaking.  He didn't speak an abundance of words to do it either.  
Proverbs 31
She opens her mouth with wisdom,
And on her tongue is the law of kindness. 

Some of us have hit a place, where we know we can't go any further without more of God's kingdom in our lives.  Thy Kingdom come Lord!


Monday, January 5, 2015

Prayer? Why?

Prayer, is it enough? Some people say it's not enough.  Others say that's just to simple.  Can you simply talk to God and see your life start to change and start to take shape?........................................Why does the bible say to pray without ceasing?  Why did Jesus become grieved when His disciples couldn't pray with Him for even an hour, knowing that His time was at hand?  Why did Jesus choose to pray during the most excruciating period of his time on earth, so excruciating that He was sweating blood?  The anticipation of what Jesus was going to suffer for us, was so much for Him, that even as perfect as He was, He asked that God take this cup from Him.  But nevertheless, submitted to God's will being done.Prayer is what carried Jesus through the most terrible suffering that any human flesh has ever had to go through.  Nobody has taken the whole world's sin into their own body.  We can barely handle our own sin, and Jesus took on everything.  He who knew no sin, took on every sin, that was on the face of the earth.  Prayer got Him through.  I ask again is prayer enough?  The disciples were praying in the upper room, before the Holy Spirit fell upon them, in the form of flaming tongues of fire,  and 3,000 souls were added to them that day.  Just 1 day, 3,000 people saved!!!(Acts chapter 1 and 2)  Is prayer enough?

Philippians 4:6,7
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Proverbs 4:23
Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it flow the issues of life

What power is in having a conversation with the God of the universe, the One who loves and cares for you more than any other.  What can a conversation with your Heavenly Father do for you.  What is the power of an exchange of words between the natural and the supernatural.  What is the power of conversation?  Having a conversation with the right person can literally change your life.  Having a conversation with the wrong person, can ruin your life.  Why is this?  Billion dollar deals are made over coffee and conversation.  Why?  Why does bullying via social media, have kids committing suicide?  They are just words?  \Lets just say that the old saying "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me", is a lie!!!  Words hurt more than any bodily harm that anyone could ever do to you.  God used words to create, what we see.  You can't see words, but words produce what is visible.  I ask again, is prayer enough?  Who are you having conversations with and what are you speaking during those conversations?  Are those conversations affecting your life for the better or for the worst.  Trust me, every word you speak and receive produces something tangible in your life. 

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