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Published in: on March 1, 2010 at 11:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

Bless Who? Love Who?

Has anyone ever called you a name? Like, a really hurtful name? Whoever came up with that old saying “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”, lied. Sometimes words do hurt. But often times, if we are mature enough, spiritually speaking; to deal with conflict- the hurtful words of others won’t offend us at all. That is, if we know how to deal with them. God’s word is full of wisdom and truth. We can be sure that if we follow His ways, we will be blessed and rewarded. Look at what Jesus had to say to us in Luke chapter six about dealing with conflict.

27 “But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you. 32″If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ lend to ‘sinners,’ expecting to be repaid in full. 35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

You have to understand something, Jesus stands for everything opposite that this world is. When this world says we should retaliate against the person who lashed out at us, they are wrong. Jesus says, “Bless them and pray for them”. Now, that doesn’t mean smart off to them, “I’m gonna pray for you!!” (Insert high and mighty Christian attitude here – cause I know Jesus and you don’t!! na na na na boo boo!!) To bless and pray means to sincerely, humble ourselves before the Lord on their behalf, and ask the Lord to draw them into fellowship with Him.

What if they are already “believers”? Pray. Pray. Pray.

When the world says fight, we should extend ourselves in peace. When the world says argue our point, because we have to have the last word…Wrong!  God will have the last word.  Believe it.

Verbal assaults reveal so much about the spiritual condition of one’s heart. Luke 6:45 says, “The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”

Final Thought- When you speak, what is your heart revealing to those around you? Do your lips exalt Him and good things, or do they reveal a more serious, underlying heart condition?

Published in: on February 14, 2010 at 11:16 pm  Comments (1)  

Boardroom Meeting

A couple of weeks ago someone asked me to write about corporate prayer.  I said I would pray about it and see what would happen.  Something I think I need to make clear to all my readers is, the things you read on my site aren’t just things I’ve made up.  I don’t write every day, and sometimes not even every week.  When the Lord speaks to me, I begin writing.  I feel a great responsibility to post material that is biblical and true to my faith.  I don’t necessarily seek out the topic; they somehow seem to seek me out.  So just so ya’ll know these aren’t just random, wild observances of mine!  I do use my personal experiences but the principles are from God, not me.  I speak from my heart and sometimes it’s raw.  But it’s as honest as it gets!

I began to ask the Lord in a very casual, but respectable manner “So, what about corporate prayer?  I know that we are to pray, it’s our communication with you but, would you lead me to something more? What can I share with my readers?”  I don’t know about you but I try daily to set aside quiet time with the Lord.  But, I also continue that time throughout the day.  My prayer gets carried on like a continual conversation.  Is it like that with you?  Do you talk with Him wherever you are?  You know, he hears your thoughts.  This conversation, about corporate prayer has carried on for a couple of weeks. And I’ve gotten bits and pieces.  Well, tonight I got a big piece of the message, actually the final piece, thus my reason for blogging now, delivered to me through my eight year old.

Andrew was doing his AWANA scripture study and came across the verses Joshua 10:12-13 In these verses, the Lord had delivered the Amorites before Israel, and at Joshua’s request caused the sun and the moon to stand still until the people of Israel had their revenge.  The bible goes on to tell us in verse 14 “And there has been no day like that, before it or after it that the LORD heeded the voice of a man, for the LORD fought for Israel.” 

Some commentary suggests that there was an eclipse.  Others say that the moon didn’t orbit for 24 hours.  Stop for a moment and imagine with me what that would be like today… Chaos.  An unexpected eclipse would certainly be a surprise!  I’m sure NASA would be all over that.  The tides would be affected.  I’m not that scientific but maybe gravity?  Needless to say, this would be a big deal!!  But let’s go back a couple thousand years and zero in on Joshua.  He’s preparing for battle.  God has already rained down a hailstorm in the previous verses before these and what do we see happen with the Amorites?  The prayers of ONE MAN, caused THE GOD to fight for HIS PEOPLE!!

If that doesn’t make you want to shout, you need to check your shoutameter!  Or your pulse, battery, something!  Amen?  The sun stood still.  The moon stood still.  These verses move me to tears.  Joshua was no doubt physically worn and tired.  God in His vast strenth moved in, stretched out His arm to the sun and the moon and said, “Be still.”  All that universal chaos to answer the request of one man.  God loves His people.  He wants to work on behalf of His people, for their greater good!

Friends, one man prayed and God responded mightily!  So much so, that there has not been another day like it since!  Let me share with you what I see when I think of corporate prayer…

If any of you have ever worked in the business world or anywhere that held boardroom meetings, you know you must be on time to those meetings, come prepared to listen, and take notes.  Most times in these meetings your executive head, manager or maybe even the President is the one holding these meetings.  Now, how does that same scenario work with corporate prayer?  Well, we have the President, our Lord and Savior.  He is present at these corporate meetings (prayer group sessions) and His plans for the company are well laid out, and He knows the path in which He wants to take us (Jer 29:11).  We, the employees (the body of believers) adhere to what He says in His word.  During these meetings we fellowship, communicate, take notes (mentally and maybe literally afterwards) and equally as important we are silent.  We are silent so that we can hear what our Fathers directions are, so that we can follow through and do exactly as we are told.  As we do what we are told (seek the lost, develop the save) We grow.  Thus expanding our company.  See the picture?

Might I add that this company has the most amazing retirement benefits??  I haven’t actually seen the package but according to 1 Corinthians 2:9 and begin reading in Revelation 21:12 it’s beyond anything my human eyes could possibly behold.  Hallelujah!

If the sun and moon were halted from one man’s devotion to the Lord, I can only begin to imagine what God would willingly do through a body of believers who actively pursued Him through faithful corporate prayer.

Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”

Speak to us, Lord.

Published in: on February 5, 2010 at 1:40 am  Comments (3)  

Take A Stand For Life

I’ve used my blog in recent months to share my abortion experience and the healing I have found through Christ.  Today, my heart is burdened on so many levels that pertain to this subject.  The recent release of the pro-life ad featuring college football star, Tim Tebow’s mother, Pam Tebow which is scheduled to air on Super Bowl Sunday has sparked a tidal wave of controversy all over our nation.  Mrs. Tebow explains in this video that she chose life after being offered the opportunity to abort her pregnancy.  I applaud the Tebow family and Focus On The Family for standing up for real family values.  I am behind them 100% in their stand for life.  Would you join us?  For more information please visit www.lifenews.com or www.focusonthefamily.com

Planned Parenthood has released an “attack” video in response to the Tebows video.  In their video, former athletes, Sean James and Al Joyner state that while they respect Mrs. Tebow’s decision and her rights, they look forward to the day when all women will be respected regardless of the decisions they make.  This coming from two men whose mothers, might I add, also chose life for them too.  So what is their argument exactly?

Sadly, abortion, is here to stay.  It is a choice.  It’s a choice between right and wrong.  It is life or death for that infant.  It is up to each of us that believe that life begins at conception to educate those around us, and we can only do this by using God’s word.

Isaiah 49:1,5 “Before I was born the LORD called me; from my birth he has made mention of my name…and now the LORD says– he who formed me in the womb to be his servant…”)

Psalm 139:13-16 “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that fully well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.  When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.  All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be”

I walked into an abortion clinic on July 17, 2001 and hoped that I would meet some compassion there.  There was none.  I thought maybe someone would reach out and offer to counsel me, but no counsel was offered.  There were pro-life protesters screaming from the entrance of the clinics parking lot.  They yelled to me to repent.  I cried. 

Proverbs 1:7 “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

I was a fool and in good company sitting in that clinic.  I was so very, very lost.  And when I say lost, I do mean aimlessly wandering.  No hope.  The burden I feel today is for the women that I know are feeling that same way right this very moment.  They’ve been where I’ve been.  More so, for the women who are contemplating a choice now to abort.  My message to them is there is Hope and Freedom, and it is found in John 3:16.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

That trip to the clinic doesn’t have to be the end for you.  You have, yet another choice to make.

Father, there is no doubt an enormous amount of babies that have come your way.  Unwanted here, but wanted by you.  Cover it Lord, cover it all with your blood.  Your grace is enough.  I’ll never understand how, but I trust.  It’s enough.  In Christs Name, Amen.

Published in: on February 4, 2010 at 3:41 pm  Leave a Comment  

Where Is The On/Off Switch?

Salvation in Jesus, and the faith we practice doesn’t come with an on/off switch that you can flip to turn your faith one way or the other. If you are on fire for God, once the switch has been turned on, it’s on for good! There is no cutting it off. There is no switch. The source of the power is eternal, a power from which we will never receive a disconnect notice or fading signal.

Psalm 18:2 The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Now, I know some “flip floppers”. Folks that talk a good game on Sunday, and early Monday morning but by mid week or most certainly on Friday evening their real self begins to seep through. Christians for about 36 hours a week OR when life calls for them to be a christian. I know them well, I used to be one. Thankfully, when God calls us out, washes us clean, redeems us and sets our feet on a new path- He ignites a flame in us. God intends for us to be scalding hot for Him. There is no halfway or luke warm. You are either very hot or not. There is no in between with God. That is one of the things I love so much about God, and His word! It’s black and white, no gray. No room to play.

This fire is a burning from deep within our hearts that we desire to tend to consistently. You might ask, “how do you tend to it”? You tend to it by praying, and reading His word. You devote yourself wholly to Him, and through that you become holy. When you turn from the desires of this world, and follow Jesus you realize that not only is there not an on/off switch, you also realize that you would never want there to be one.

Luke 3:16 John answered, saying to all, “I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.

I have Jesus. Once you have Him, why would you ever want to shut Him out? I don’t want a switch, a door, a wall or anything else to turn off, close out or come between me, and my great King, the lover of my soul! There is a joy, a pureness, and a contentment that you have when Jesus lives inside of you, and the only way to know these things is to have Him, to know Him personally, and experience Him daily.

Father, I long for the lost to know you. I pray that they will see those of us who carry the eternal flame, and that the flame (You) will draw them in so that they will come to know you personally. Continue to draw me closer to you. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Published in: on January 27, 2010 at 1:50 pm  Comments (1)  

Please, Lord Not That! It Stinks!

Last week, after writing about being tall enough to get on the next ride,  I began to think about how God uses our past to minister to those in the present, and prepare us for the future.  When the Lord started a deep-sea dive into the depths of my heart late last spring, he pulled out something that I thought I had buried.  I thought for sure I had buried it deep enough that He would never find a purpose for it, and would never call it out of the darkness of my heart, or use it for His glory, but He did.

My abortion experience was painful.  While I am forgiven, the whole experience just smelled!  Looking back on my experience leads me to the story of Lazarus.  John 11:38-45 says “Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb.  It was a cave, and a stone lay against it.  Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”  Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”  Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”  Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying.  And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me.  And I know that you always hear me but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe You sent me.  Now when He had said these things, He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, Come Forth!”  And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth.  Jesus said to them, “Loose him and let him go.” 

God has a supernatural way of breathing life into something that is lifeless.  Now, in the situation above he brought someone to life.  Isn’t that what He has done to each and every one of us?  The day you accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior you were brought to life!  When He called me to share my abortion testimony with a group of high school girls at our church last fall, my response was a little less than thrilled.  But, I obeyed.  My first thought was, “Lord, that part of my past stinks!  Are you sure this is what I am to share?”  Much like Martha’s response to Jesus when He told them to take away the stone, “Lord, he stinks!  Are you sure you want to remove that stone?” (paraphrase) And His response to her, was much like His response to me, “If you believe, you WILL see the glory of God.” (paraphrase) 

When we respond to the Lord in obedience we witness the supernatural glory, and wonder of His power at work in our lives, and the lives of others around us.  I wondered what if they judge me?  What if they make fun of me?  I wondered if my family would hate me.  This was the first time I’d openly shared my abortion, not only publicly but with extended family as well.  I had to spend much time in prayer; That is where you find your answers.  I knew that God had called me to do this, and I knew He would see me through.  Ridicule was something Christ endured, and I figured I would probably have to endure it as well.  What ridicule I would endure would not begin to touch the surface, compared to the suffering He took in my place on Calvary.  Sometimes, it is scary to step out there and reveal deep, dark, hidden secrets of our past but we have to constantly remind ourselves that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)  I realized my fear wasn’t about me, neither was my abortion, it was about Christ, and His power working through my life, and His glory being revealed.

You might be saying, “There is no way God can use something from my past the way He used Lazarus’ life, and death, and then life again.”  That is where you are wrong, HE can, and HE will!  This requires an act of faith, and obedience on our part.  See the connection?  Lazarus once lived, then he died, then Christ gave him life again.  You had a situation that you went through, buried and laid it to rest, but God can bring life to it, and use it for His glory, but you must be willing to submit to His perfect will.

Is there something in your past that stinks?  Is there something hidden in your past that God wants to use to reach others, to help others see that He loves them, and that he paid the ultimate sacrifice for their salvation?  What is keeping you from letting go of your past, and letting God have His way?

Father, thank you for using me and working through me to reach those that need to hear that you ARE a loving, forgiving and merciful Lord.  I give my all to you.  Have your way with me Lord.  I pray that others will read this blog and that their hearts will be softened to hear your voice and they will choose to be obedient and turn their hearts over to you, so that you can work through them too.  In Jesus Name, Amen.

Struggling with courage?

Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you.  He will not leave you nor forsake you.”

Psalm 27:1 “The LORD is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear?  The LORD is the strength of my life;  Of whom shall I be afraid?

Published in: on January 21, 2010 at 2:03 pm  Comments (1)  

Are You Tall Enough?

This past weekend was a monumental weekend for myself, and hundreds of others at Englewood Baptist Church.  We had the AWEsome priviledge to attend a conference facilitated by Blackaby Ministries called Experiencing God Together,  There is not enough time, nor space on this blog site for me to go into detail of the great things that God allowed me to experience this weekend, but I’ll try.

Dr. Mel Blackaby and Rev. Bo Stevens spoke at this conference.  There were over 70 people from 16 states that traveled at their own expense to come, and help with this event, that alone is God’s work at hand.  The fact that He got all of those people here in one place, on time, safely, and for His purpose is a testament to His power.  The testimonies of these people, and what God had done in their lives, and was still doing, from the smallest of detail, and to the greatest of detail, warmed my heart.  And at times brought me to tears.  To hear them tell of how God had taken the ashes of their lives, and breathe life into dead circumstances, as only He can, and listen to them give praise to Him, was a sweet sound.  To be among Christ followers who unashamedly abandoned what this world calls “living”, take up their crosses, and follow Him, was a holy experience.

Rev. Bo Stevens was speaking Saturday night about the church being on mission with God, and how a church can’t move forward with God if they aren’t spiritually mature, and growing in His word.  It was then, that a light flipped on for me.  I turned to my husband and whispered, “it’s like being in line at the amusement park, you’ve got your ticket to ride the roller coaster but you can’t because your not tall enough “.  He looked at me and said “Huh??”  Let me explain.  To go with God to the next level requires our full attention, and complete devotion to prayer and to His word.  God is not interested in half-hearted devotion.  Let me say that again, God is not interested in half-hearted devotion.  You see after hearing Rev. Bo speak I wasn’t necessarily wondering about my church being on mission with God, I was wondering about myself being on mission with God.

I deeply desire to serve God, period.  But I found out this weekend that I’ve prayed wrong, I’ve been seeking God with the wrong heart attitude.  I’ve asked God, “What can I do for you?”  As if to think the God of the universe needs something from me?  As if?  Can you believe that?  How silly of me to even dare pray those words!  HE, capital H, capital E needs nothing from me but this…”Yes, Lord.  I’m here and willing for you to work THROUGH me.”

These rides, appointments, tasks, adventures, whatever you want to call them are divine and each of us have one waiting for us.  All of them require faith and trust in God.  You never know where they may take you, who you might meet, or what God might do through you on each one.  You have a choice, you can say yes or you can say no, and stand back and do nothing.  But let me remind you of something, doing nothing doesn’t reach a lost and dying world for Christ.

As saved, followers of the Christ, we have the ticket for the ride.  Jesus, is our ticket.  Are you tall enough to ride the next ride?  Maybe you’re not, maybe I’m not.  If we aren’t, the next thing we have to do is ask ourselves if we are willing to bow before a very worthy God and devote ourselves to Him fully so that HE can prepare our hearts for the next task or appointment He has waiting for us.

Heavenly Father, thank you for the experience of this past weekend.  I’m so thankful that I have my ticket!  My heart is fully devoted to you today, and everyday.  I pray that you will prepare me through your word for my next ride.  Here I am Lord.  I am willing, and I say yes.  In Jesus Name, Amen.


Published in: on January 11, 2010 at 5:41 pm  Comments (2)  

My Hearts Resolution

With the new decade quickly approaching, I, like so many others have been thinking about my new years resolution.  We all make them or have made them in the past.  Sadly, I rarely stick to mine usually because I forget what it is!

The last couple of days I’ve been thinking about my new years blog and praying about what to write and I’ve asked myself many questions…  Why do we make resolutions, especially on January 1st?  Why do we wait until Monday to start kicking a bad habit?  Why not start on Thursday?  Why do we start in the morning and not the evening?  When we decide what it is we are going to do … why don’t we choose to start RIGHT THEN!  Why wait?  Why don’t we see that next breath as the perfect opportunity to be the starting point of our newest resolution?

I’ll admit, I’ve made a resolution, but I’m not calling it a new years resolution.  I’m calling it my “Hearts Resolution” and really I’m returning to it.  It’s to be more like my father, Jesus.  To aspire to be more like Him in my actions, my words and to seek His approval and no other.

Father, my prayer for this entire world is that we would ALL seek to be like you.  I pray that as we close this decade and enter into a new one, we would follow you, love you and live for you like never before.  I pray that we would seek your kingdom first and look for you in everything we do.  In Christs Name, Amen.

Published in: on December 31, 2009 at 11:37 am  Comments (1)  

Oh! To Have Been A Shepherd Back Then!!

Luke 2:8-20 “Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.  The the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.  For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.  And this will be the sign to you: You will fine a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was a with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.”  And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.  Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child.  And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.  Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.

***

Can you imagine?  Talk about life interrupted, as Lysa Terkeurst would say!  Here these shepherds are tending to their sheep, minding their business…  I can’t imagine that sheep tending is a very “fly by the seat of your pants” kind of career, can you?  All of the sudden, out of nowhere Angels show up, heavenly hosts and divine information is being delivered!  Uh hello!!!!  Woah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What if this was us?  Today, December 25, 2009?  What if it was yesterday or last week?  I wonder what kind of reaction I would have had, had the Angels and Hosts stopped me in the middle of sixteen loads of laundry to tell me that the Savior of the world had been born today?  What about you?  What do you think your reaction would have been?  I sadly think we believe that God doesn’t speak to us in great ways such as this anymore.  Or is it that we choose not listen?  Is it that we drown Him out with the sounds of the TV and the radio,  is it the constant attention to a blackberry that causes us to miss His voice when He speaks?

Notice what they did as soon as the Angels disappeared, it says they came with haste, which means they ran!  They ran and found this Savior and worshiped Him.  Are you running to Him this morning and worshiping Him this day and every day?

Oh, wow!  To have been a shepherd back then!  Yeah, their jobs may have been boring and lowly but look at what they got to experience!  Some of the first to be told of the birth of our savior, some of the first to worship the newborn king and some of the first to carry the good news that He, indeed, was born!

Happy Birthday Jesus!!!

Published in: on December 25, 2009 at 8:57 am  Leave a Comment  

Re-gifting

So I’ve decided to do this post, while some may think it has nothing to do with touching the heart of God, living out a purpose filled life or biblical principles, I happen to think it does!

Have you ever re-gifted an item?  Some people don’t even know what this means.  So allow me to explain.  You receive a gift, you decide to re-wrap and give it to someone else.  Apparently, there are many reasons for doing this such as, you might not care for the gift, you may not need it, you might already have one, etc.

There are a lot of rules about re-gifting that are floating around out there such as you should never re-gift if there is a chance that the original gift giver will find out you gave away the gift and the person you are giving the gift to should not know its a gift that you’ve already received and you are passing it on to them.  Sounds so tiring, doesn’t it?

So, I’m curious…have any of my readers ever re-gifted?  If so, what did you re-gift and why?

I re-gifted a carousel photo thingy once because I didn’t need it and there was an elderly woman I knew that would love it and she did!  The bible says to give, period.  Who cares where it comes from, so long as we didn’t steal it, right?

Published in: on December 21, 2009 at 2:09 pm  Comments (2)  
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