Posted in Humility

Humility the Place of Safety

As those who trust Jesus Christ, our objection in this life is to love the Lord God – with all our heart, mind, soul and strength and to love our neighbor as we love ourselves; Matt 22: 37-40.  As we embark on our life in Christ, we have all that we need to accomplish these tasks (2 Pet 1:3), but they do not go without our diligence and self-sacrifice (Luke 9:23).   I would say that our success in achieving God’s will is not in our perfection necessarily but rather in our humility.  God will be able to accomplish the most impossible fetes in our lives ONLY when we are humble before Him.  Sometimes we go ahead of humility and set out to complete tasks in His name only to be defeated.  We end up being consumed on the attack and the attacker, then on what the Lord wants to accomplish in us.  O, how many times I have done this, and still do!  I am thankful for the Lord’s grace and mercy!  He reminds us that it is when we are humble before Him that we are victorious. 

He gave us the strategy of the Lord’s Kingdom; in Luke 6:27-31–  unless we are humble, we will never be able to carry out His instructions; bless those who curse us, pray for those who hurt you. 

When we seek to be justified and claim our rights in making our defense – as our first line of business, we are already defeated.  Until we see that the person or situation is never our problem – but the means that God is using for the shaping of His sons and daughters – we will continue to live in much turmoil and futility with no spiritual growth.  The same crisis and upset will be repeated until we see it for what it is and act in God’s way towards it an not our way.

Daily Walk with Jesus

So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7

Posted in Obedience

What we Sow we will Reap

Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? Rom 6:16.

Our walk with the Lord is black and white, with no shadow of grey.  We are with the Lord or against Him.  We are faithful or unfaithful.  Daily we must strive to overcome and endure, and this requires our diligence. I genuinely believe that a great deal of our grief, hardship, and turmoil comes through neglect of understanding this crucial spiritual law – what we sow is how we will reap.  Far too quickly, we walk in habits and hold to old mindsets, which are in fact what we obey, rather than the Word.  We take to things and people to be our source of comfort, joy and escape, and in all these, we serve not the Lord and instead serve the world, ourselves and Satan.

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded – James 4:7-8

The minute we submit to something other than the Lord, Satan and his crew legally enter into our lives to set up shop, no matter how seemingly small and insignificant the invitation may be.  Once they are allowed admittance, it only a matter of time before the ‘leaven will leaven the whole lump’ and is revealed in our lives.   God will not fix what we have done through disobedience, no matter how sincere we pray or have others pray for us. 

“Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation.The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Mark 14:38.

It is to our spiritual and physical well-being that we take the Lord’s warning seriously in believing that the devil goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.  

We easily fall into an inactive faith where we believe God holds us in a spiritual bubble of good things, and all we need to do is believe.   Let us remind ourselves that we are soldiers for Christ and what this requires in this passage:

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;  praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— Ephes 6:10-18

Daily Walk with Jesus

  • Submit to God; look (and pray – ask) for areas where we are not submitting to God
  • Resist the devil; be mindful of things like fear, anger, frustration – for they are avenues of temptation we may quickly succumb to out of habit
  • Watch and Pray; always
  • Put on our armor & be battle-ready, and fight daily!
Posted in The Word

The Love for the Truth

I learned of a person I knew to be one who is a faithful servant and elder and who has led many bible teachings and studies, some 40 years’ worth, who has only just recently read the bible cover to cover for the second time.  I was shocked but not surprised and no less deeply grieved to learn this.  In truth, this person represents most of those who profess to love the Lord Jesus and God the Father.  They may be those who have faithfully served all their lives in churches they attend and appear to be lovers of God – but this is not what qualifies our love for Him.  According to  John 14, Jesus tells us that only those who keep His Word are those who show their love for God.  We have to know the Word to keep it, and for far too many, this has become optional and where bible reading is liken to one coming to a buffet table.  When we do not love the truth, that is to enjoy reading the Bible in its entirety,  – we are at risk to be of this crowd: 

The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 2 Thess 2:9-12 

Daily Walk with Jesus

The Bible is God’s letter to us, that reveals His heart.  Counting the times we read it through is not the point; instead, to read and reread because it is our joy and delight to do so.  In so doing, our love for Him will only grow, according to the love we have for His Word through our obedience to what it says.

Posted in Counterfeit

The Tares Among Us

Anyone who claims Christ as their Lord and Savior – and continues to walk in their flesh lusts; in pride and is self-seeking is a liar. This is what makes up Christendom; all those who practice their religion their way and remain condemned in their sins and know nothing of the power of the gospel of Jesus Christ. They are ever learning but never come to this truth; 2 Tim 3:6-8. They have ears that do not hear and eyes that do not see because they refuse to repent of their sins. They are bound in fear and led by much misery in their lives. They are not happy people and have many complaints and are unthankful. They may be very good at giving a false impression, but those closest will see what is true. They speak the language of faith but live in unbelief. These are the tares that Jesus talks about that the evil one has sowed into the Kingdom of God; Matt 13:24-30. They look like they are in the faith at a distance, but upon closer review, they expose themselves.

Daily Walk with Jesus

We must be careful in who we regard as brothers or sisters in Christ. Our inner circle by the nature of the kingdom of God will be relatively small, for narrow is the way, and few will desire to find it. If we would notice, the tares are of the evil one meaning they belong to Satan. Is it our job to try to change a tare into wheat? No, this is impossible. If we are not sure they are a tare or just a confused soul? Reveal the contradiction you see in them – to them, then back away and pray for them.  To continue to include them as a faithful brother or sister is to participate in their lie.

Posted in Seek God

Evil Unbelief & Deceived by Sin

Did you know that we can be hardened against God if we continue in sin?  That when we continue to practice this sin or that sin, we are at risk of becoming deceived?  In fact, I believe that there may be pockets in our lives where we are deceived by sin and hardened in unbelief, while other areas in which we love the Lord and serve Him well. 

This is no trivial matter and thankfully we depend upon the grace of God daily, to lead us, and show us what it is we need to see and know.

Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called ‘Today,’ lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. Heb 3:12-13

Daily Walk with Jesus

Today, Lord Jesus, we ask that you open our eyes so we may see where we walk in unbelief.  We ask also for you to reveal to us the sin we still practice.  Let us see these through Your eyes.  Amen. 

Posted in worship

De Clutter our Environment

I don’t know about you, but when I bake, cook dinner or anything else I usually make a giant mess.  In my process, I am focused on creating what is in my mind, and clean-up is not part of that as my creative juices flow.  So, at the end, whether it be a dinner for one, or for 6 it all seems to end the same, mayhem!   As I look at this mess before me, I am reminded of clutter in the spiritual realm that is among us.  In the Spirit we can’t see the chaos, but we can know it is there by the environment.  One of the things the Lord has shown me is the need to lift His name up in praise and thanksgiving always because He is Lord.  That when we do, we are removing the ‘high places’ that we may have inadvertently set up, or that have been set up by another.  It is not a magic formula, but rather our state of being and worship.  It is our response and go to, and commitment.  We will not be moved or bullied by the environment we may be in, but will honor God in it!

Daily Walk with Jesus

If there is a tension in our home, workplace or wherever we may be or a sense of confusion, and even hopelessness, is an indicator that there is much spiritual clutter.  We must begin watching that we don’t speak in agreement with these negative forces – in complaining or gossiping about them.  We may do this even as we talk about it to others for prayer – careful in this.  Take Paul’s advice when he says –

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. Phil 4:8.

And begin lifting the name of the Lord in all you say and do. 

The power and significance of praise is probably more than we think it to be.  I have recently added to the Menu; Living Water.  Please take a moment to have a look, read the introduction/explanation and if you would like, the first contribution called Praise. Thank you, God Bless!

Posted in fear

Fear is Fantasy

Fear is at the top of what competes for our attention today and what seems to be taking over. As I was pondering fear, this dropped into my mind:

Fear is a fantasy that looks for victims to enact itself.  

We know that fear is a spirit, as 2 Timothy 1:7 reveals. ONLY when we consent to this spirit will it have power over us and able to fulfill its intention.

Daily Walk with Jesus

One of the strategies of the enemy is to seek to be undiscovered. Our strategy is to not deny we have an enemy and it is not flesh and blood; Ephes 6:12.

We ask the Lord to reveal to us where we may have become a slave to fear. Daily, we look and root out fear from our minds and close all doors that bring it in.  We are in Christ, and so are no longer a slave to fear, and so are not ones who entangle themselves in the miseries and confusion of the world!  Jesus Christ gives us His wisdom and counsel; Is 11, and will navigate the world that is laden in land-mines.  The Body of Christ will stand out, not in protest nor in a fear induced compliance but because we contain Peace, by the Prince of Peace – that the world cannot know nor understand!

 

Posted in prayer

The Courage to Ask Hard Questions

I have found that my spiritual growth has spurted extensively because I braved hard questions to ask the Lord.  Without going into the detail, I asked Him what He thought about Christmas, what He thought about the (Christian) music I loved and listened to, what He thought about church as we know it.  I asked Him what He wanted me to do, in a situation that I saw and knew what I wanted to do in it.  In all these questions, my life, and view of my faith, and all else, slid off the table – when the Lord answered.  In asking, He answered, and I chose to follow what He revealed.  Out of this, I have grown leaps and bounds and learning what freedom in Christ is – when we are able to cast aside what we have held so dear, and loved ever so deeply He shows us how it had held us in serious bondage as we look back on it. Not only that, but we gain new spiritual eyes to see in line with His Word.

Daily Walk with Jesus

Ask Him those hard questions, and wait for His life changing answers! 

Posted in Faith

The Rough Patches

There are times in our lives when we must walk upon difficult road.  This road may be painful and all consuming.  And on this road we are likely to become weak and  vulnerable to the evil one’s ploys.  It could be through an illness, disease or loss of some kind.  This patch can be a road that the Lord does great and mighty things or it can be a road of devastation – and it depends upon how we choose and determine to walk it.

Our Daily Walk with Jesus

On this particular road, the enemy of our soul feels like he is right there – calling all the shots.  While this may be so, since we are the Lord’s he cannot touch us.  Suffering is not kept from us, but must be part of our lives, for the Lord Himself had to  suffer and He was sinless!   Our task is to not look to the ‘waves’ (Matt 14:22-33) but lock our eyes upon the one in whom we love, Jesus.  No matter what the waves are doing, it does not matter – when we are diligent to not waver in our trust in our Lord.  We do not let the waves influence us in any way, or we will be consumed by them and sink in what has come upon us. but also know, if we do let the waves take us down, all we need to do is call out – and He will brings us back up above the water.

When we are met with overwhelming grief, sorrow and or pain where only fear seems to speak to us we must maintain to do at least 2 things:

  •   Call out to our friends who love the Lord and are faithful to Him – so they may pray for us.
  •  Make it our daily habit to lift the name of the Lord up in praise and thanksgiving.  If we are too weak even to do this, than we use our mind.  We get a hold of an audio bible:  BibleGateway and let it be like a spiritual air filter as the word of God speaks to the environment and our hearts.

I ask the Lord, for you – that He grant to you His peace as you walk through the storm, that He give you relief in His name and by the power of His Spirit – and all that you go through, He will grant you grace and a deeper understanding of who He is so you can fully say and understand through your experience; ‘the joy of the Lord is my strength!’ Neh 8:10

Sing praise to the Lord, you saints of His,
And give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name.
For His anger is but for a moment,
His favor is for life;
Weeping may endure for a night,
But joy comes in the morning. Ps 30:4-5

Posted in Grace

Difficult People

Is there someone in your life that is difficult to love or who grieves you?  A spouse perhaps, child, sibling co-worker, or neighbor?  One who exasperates you and makes your life miserable?

Our Daily Walk with Jesus

Pay special attention to people such as this in your life and ask God what He wants you to learn about Him and you through this person.  Often the very reason we have such people in our lives is that God has strategically placed them there for our benefit.  Our character can be deeply cut in wounding if left to us, or we are shaped like a diamond when it is polished by the hand of God as we submit to Him such personalities in our lives.  God calls us to love our neighbor as we love our selves, and this should be our goal to those who we find hard to love and forgive.  When we lay down those areas in us that this person seems to be able to rile up, we are making room for the Spirit to work and grow us more into the image of our Lord.

God will give the grace to love with His love that will minister to such souls the power of the Living God.   You will be His witness to them.  He will provide you with the strength you need to bless those who hate you, treat you wrongly, and use you.  They will no longer have the power they have had to grieve you because when you cut the tie of holding them accountable for their sins against you, you are released from all the bondage that held you down and so will experience the freedom that Christ gives from such bondage.

As we submit to God in this area, He will give us wisdom, grace and practicality in dealing with hard and difficult people.  They will even be fast-tracked to God and His dealing as we get out of the way!   Our unbearable situation will be exchanged for the joy that comes as we receive from the Lord His goodness and grace and we will rejoice!

Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men.  If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.  Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.

Therefore

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”

 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:17-21