In the center of the Bible you will discover the wonderful illustrious Book of The Psalm! It is a marvelous collection of spiritual songs,hymns, prayers, heartfelt expressions, sympathy, compassion and wisdom for all of humanity! Herein is a collective, dynamic, reflective, deep compelling expression of the inner intimate thoughts of many! The often experienced transparency is emotional, illuminating and enlightening! The myriad of beautiful Psalmists wonderfully and often poetically share their anxieties, confessions, weaknesses, strengths doubts, fears and most important Love for the Lord!
Everyday on my way to the office I pass by this church building. Most days I don’t pay it much attention, except for Thursday. On Thursday, there is a long line of people made up of women, men, and children, pretty much all races of people. Some are able bodied, some are in wheel chairs. All are there to receive the food that is handed out by the church.
It is indeed a very good thing this church does. I can only imagine that for some in the line, its’ the best meal they get all week.
Each Thursday as I past the line, I say to myself, “If it wasn’t for the grace of God, there go I”, and immediately acknowledge,thank God, and whisper a prayer for those in the line. I often ask myself, why is this, then I’m reminded of the scripture “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Yes we will have trials and tribulations, but we must still be faithful during the trials & tribulations. We need to pray.
This scene at the church also reminds me of a song from years ago, which I use to play for one of the many choirs I directed. It escapes me who wrote it, however the lyrics causes one to reflect on some of the troubling times people experience in life, from which none of us are exempt. Some have greater needs than others, but we all have need to Pray.
“If God Gave Us Everything We Need, Then We Wouldn’t Have Need To Pray”
Somebody’s heart must be broken each day
Sorrow and sadness, must come somebody’s way
Somebody’s life, must be filled with despair
Nowhere to go, but to God in prayer
Someone must go hungry, and beg for bread
No shelter to cover, his poor weary head
No one to care, and no one to share
Another day’s burden, that seems so hard to bare
Oh, but there must be hills and mountains to climb
Roads that are rough, and troubling times
If God gave us everything we need
Then we wouldn’t have need to pray
We Need To Pray
Spending time with God is one of the most important things you can do. If you read the Scriptures you will find that even Jesus often took time alone to spend with the FATHER! Spending time with God will help you how to respond properly or not to respond at all to others. Spending time with Him yields patience and understanding. The wonderful thing about God is that He has provided so many ways to continually enhance our personal relationship with Him. He has given us His Holy Spirit to lead and guide us to all truth! He has given us His Holy Word to teach us and equip us to do whatever He has planned for our lives. He has even provided spiritual armor to protect us from evil. To even tell us when we are right or wrong! His Word also gives us directions as to what not to do! His Word teaches us how and when to stand in the midst of spiritual warfare! The scripture tell us “trust in the Lord will all thine heart and lean not to your own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He will direct our paths.” He has given us His precious Son Jesus, who will be your personal Savior once you truly invite Him into your heart. It is in Him you will always find victory!
The book of Galatians clearly tells us; “Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh, and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.” Christ lived a sinless life! Christ became flesh! He conquered sin in the flesh so He could be our example! He died for us! He did not die for us to continue to make excuses for our shortcomings. When we accept Him as Lord and Savior we are able to rely on Him to “save us from the power of sin in our life”. A truly dedicated life to God will result in an increased ability to exercise self-control! Spending time with God will help you to discern between good and evil. To be as “wise as a serpent and as harmless as a dove!” God is aware of everything. He is omniscient! It does not matter how things appear or seem. Neither does it matter when everyone else pretends everything is okay when something is terribly wrong! God knows how things really are! In the midst of a declining world you can still enjoy a wholesome clean life. Spending time with God will also teach and direct you how to be a good steward of the things and people He entrusts to your care! His Word also tells us “He will supply all of your needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus! God is a Spirit of TRUTH!
Paul also warns us of false teachings. Spending time with God will help you recognize those who pervert the Gospel of Christ! He even goes so far to tell us that they use it for a license of licentiousness. Which merely means to excuse their loose behavior? He tells us to not receive the message regardless of the person or position. I encourage you to study God’s Word. Listen closely when some one says they have a message from God. Allow the Holy Spirit to sift its contents and validate its Truth. Just ask yourself how often did Jesus talk about how many horses or chariots someone had? How many suits of clothing did Joseph, Priscilla and Aquilla or anyone else for that matter possess? How much money it took to feed the multitudes? I don’t think that Jesus told the woman at the well that He “loved her and all of her faults”. He told her “TO GO AND SIN NO MORE!” Furthermore are you spiritually enriched by the message? Have you been provoked to good works or spiritual growth? Or do you just continue to feel content in disobedience?
Jesus said “If you abide in My Word, you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and truth shall make you free.” Jesus also tells us in His Word; “whoever commits sin is a slave to sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free you shall be free indeed.” The point that I am trying to make is Christ died to make us free! Spending time with God will give you freedom! We must commence embracing a Christ centered life! Christ took back the power the enemy stole! God’s Word really is “a lamp unto our feet and a light unto out path.” Paul goes further to say “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let Him be accursed.” There is much spiritual warfare about us! This is really not a game! We are living in the perilous times that the bible talks about! Please do not settle for a life that pleases man. Commence to really put God first in your life! Man’s approval is not necessary to accomplish God’s will in your life. He will and can make your path straight! God is the source of everything you possibly need to accomplish whatever He has for you to do.
Spending time with God will yield much peace. It will also consecrate your heart and your conscious! God will teach you how to guard your heart! You see God is a Spirit of Truth! I am thankful for His presence in my life! The devil is the father of lies! Deception and trickery are not a part of God’s fruit. Many are greatly deceived. I encourage you to spend some time reading Exodus. It is fear-provoking to know how much time they spent consecrating themselves for worship. They had reverence and deep respect for God. Worshipping God was sacred! Today it is not necessary for many. Many see worship as a time for them to “stand up for their gifts.” In times past God’s presence was earnestly welcomed. God is all knowing! God is truly Holy! God said that the true worshippers “worship Him in Spirit and in TRUTH!” I thank Him that I can freely lift my hands to thank and praise Him for the freedom He has given me.
Spending time with God will teach you how to properly navigate through this world of sin! Spending time with Jesus allows you to be calm in the midst of spiritual warfare. Jesus quite often did not respond to His accusers! You see many times just enough detail was omitted to prohibit the real truth from coming out. They sought to discredit His sincerity. More often than not a one sided story was and is embraced as truth! God is Light in Him is no darkness. “Perfect Love casts out all fear!” Just know it is more important what God knows rather than what others think! We must stand for the TRUTH! Jude tells us to contend for the faith! We must measure what is being taught against the Word of God. There are many false teachers who are misleading those who really need to hear the Gospel! He tells us “ these are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts, and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage. But you beloved remember the words which were spoken before the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; how they told you that their would be mockers in the last time who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts. These are sensual persons who cause division, not having the Spirit.” Jude ends telling us “Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding JOY!”
It is very easy to become attached to a spiritual leader. When one has helped you it is natural to feel loyalty. Especially when you have confided in them. Paul warns us against having such pride in our favorite leaders that causes divisions in the church. The Corinthian Church for an example was a very carnal church. It continually indulged in the immorality that was practiced culturally. The culture of that day embraced a temple of prostitution. The Corinthians needed specific instructions because of their immoral standards. Paul tells us “the body is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.” It was because of their carnality that Paul continuously warned them! It is spiritually dangerous to create an environment that embraces sin and labels it unconditional love. That really worships God in flesh and half truths!
Paul encourages us to imitate Christ because He himself spent time with God and walked closely with Him. I would like to encourage you to commit to spend at least 10 minutes of time alone with God each day! Just you and God with no distractions! Learn how to “ Be still and Know”. Start your personal devotion with prayer & Thanksgiving to give you the proper focus. Then just quietly discipline yourself to listen. To be still. Watch how someone or something tries to distract you. Please do not give up. (You see the enemy is so clever at distracting you.) Remember the idea is to exercise discipline. Increase your time gradually with God. This will also enhance your personal Bible Study time. I assure you any burden you might have will begin to lift. You see God really is a burden bearer. Honoring God by spending time with Him will give you direction. You cannot change anything that has happened but you can begin to really “walk in the light.” End your time Thanking Him for all He has done. Remember when you pray you must obey. To Love God is to obey Him! God’s Word is true!
We too must stand on the Word of God even when we are called anything but a child of God! Spending time with God and obeying His commandments will free you from sinful strongholds! I am thankful that God has provided us with many gifted men and women of God who are committed to spreading the true Gospel! They take seriously their responsibility to present Biblical Truth. A true spiritual leader is a representative of Christ. and has nothing to offer that God has not already given him or her! Loyalty should not cause strife, or slander. The truth can disable slander! God really is a Spirit of Truth! Our deepest loyalties should be to Christ and not to human agents! Those who spend more time debating the importance of church leadership than declaring Christ’s message don’t have Christ as their first priority. God’s Word clearly tells us “that we should not go beyond what is written. Spending time with God will cause you to attach yourself to God, rather than a spiritual leader. Commence to spend time with God “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not to thine own understanding in all thy ways acknowledge HIM and HE shall direct your path”. When you spend time with God you shall know the TRUTH, and the TRUTH shall make you free!
Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end.
Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law: yea, I shall observe it
with my whole heart.
Make me to go in the path of thy commandments: for therein
do I delight.
Incline my heart unto thy testimonies, and not to covetousness.
Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way.
Stablish thy word unto thy servant, who is devoted to thy fear.
Turn away my reproach which I fear; for thy judgments are good.
Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: quicken me in thy righteousness.
Statutes = Permanent and unchangeable regulations.
Law = What God has taught us in His Word that he requires of us.
Commandments = Recognizing the “authority” of the Commander, and the necessity of
obeying the content of the charge.
Testimonies = God has testified of Himself, and His will, in His Word.
Judgments = Decisions God has made as a Judge, in order to make earthly
behavior conform to his heavenly standard.
Precepts = Instructions from God regarding the duties of man.
Teach Me Oh Lord
Giving up “Me-ness for We-ness”
Marriage is ordained by God! It was meant to be a Covenant relationship sanctioned by a Covenant God! A Covenant is a sacred vow witnessed by God! For Christians it is the most solemn agreement that one can make between a man and woman! A Covenant requires sacrifice it represents the merging of two lives. The “two becoming one.” This does not mean one gives up their own personal identity. Two strong hearts join together as One! They cleave together not out of neediness, but because of an undying Love & Commitment and the desire to have a loving complimenting companion!
Many marriages are dissolving for a plethora of reasons! Many are and have been “unequally yoked” from the very beginning. Many have embraced worldly concepts and the idea of “what is good for me” takes precedent. It is important to continue to ignite the flames of love, honor, comittment, communication, respect, passion and understanding! Many couples allow marriage to become a secondary priority and treat it accordingly. Slowly, but surely they begin to allow their needs to be met outside the marriage as well! Many have allowed manipulation and deception to embed itself in the relationship that only smothers intimacy! Many have behaved so repulsively towards one another that respect and sensitivity have been cast into the sea of unforgiveness! Many have allowed domestic violence and abuse of all sorts! Many are bound by compulsion and ambivalence that only serves to vamp the very life out of one another… Instead of building a healthy home environment. They build a marital nest of confusion, turbulence, pain and unhappiness. Marriage was never meant to be a competition of wills nor a degrading of one another’s character. Divorce comes about because of the hardness of the heart. Divorce is leaving many casualties!
Life presents many challenges as well as Celebrations! Marriage is about learning how to commit to someone who you can learn to be transparent with. To build and share an ongoing growing, loving, lasting mutually satisfying physical, emotional and spiritual relationship. To nurture, one another and give each other healthy space as well. To have one another’s best interest at heart. To celebrate and encourage each other through the challenges that life presents from time to time. To together live your lives to please God an allow him to use you to spread that love to others! Just think how life would be if this was really the case! God really has a marvelous workable plan for marriage! Instead, God’s design for marriage is constantly being pushed to the background! Too many instead embrace infidelity and alternative sexual relationships and listen to bad ungodly, unscriptural advice…..
If you are at a place in life and you know that your marriage is not all that it is meant to be… Or if you are having an affair either emotional or physical … Or if you never really thought about the vows you made or the seriousness of marriage…. Or if you have let anything and everyone come between you and your spouse… Know it will not just get better on its own. Marriage like anything else of value takes work! You must do something, don’t continue to live in a mystic haze of unhappiness! Repent! Which simply means to CHANGE it! Keep in mind you can only change yourself! Think about it! Had you ever really thought about it; God totally knows what’s up? You are not fooling Him! Start by giving the courtesy that you extend to your friends, coworkers, acquaintances, lover, strangers or whoever else to the one who you supposedly committed to Love, Honor, Trust and……
Again, and I think it is worth repeating that divorce comes about because the hardening of the heart. Here is what the WORD of God says: “And He answered and said to them, “What did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce, and to dismiss her.” And JESUS answered and said to them, “Because of the hardness of your heart he wrote this precept. But from the beginning of the Creation, GOD made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh; so they are not longer two, but one flesh. There fore what GOD has joined together, let Not man separate…” Mark 10
Take some time and really think about where you are going in your marriage? Have you taken a detour? Pray this prayer or pray your own prayer if you are seeking restoration for your marriage! It is your heart that the Lord is concerned with! Not how you make things appear to others. Embrace the powerfulness of TRUTH! It is here you will discover the TRUE LOVE that can only come from being connected to God! Life is precious! You can never ever really be happy when you jump from relationship to relationship without dissolving the former conflict. It just builds up and gains momentum and at some point those issues will appear again. Learn to allow the LORD to purge you from all that Baggage! Give yourself the gift of breaking the cycle of dysfunctional and sometimes generational unhappy relationships. COME OUT OF DENIAL!!! It’s never too late! Commence to commit to discover and learn healthier relational dynamics then actually implement them in your own marriage NOW! Pledge to committing to the building of a lasting, secure, committed, satisfying, realistic, rewarding, marriage where Love, Respect and mutual concern take the helm. And let “Jesus take the Wheel!” Begin to give up “Me-ness for We-ness!
We first want to say Thank You for being our God and our Father! We Thank You Lord, that we have You to come to at anytime, anywhere and in any and every situation. Lord we Thank You for Your precious Son Jesus Christ who sacrificed His life that we may live life to its fullest. Lord, we come in the name of Jesus asking that you would open the pathway for healing for ________ (name of spouse and his wife ( husband) and restore their marriage. As your servant Lord I come realizing that you know what the needs are here. Without saying Lord you alone know what is going on, and all that has ever happened!
Lord GOD, I pray that you will allow healing and reconciliation to take place. That whatever hurts or disappointments they have experienced can be mended through the power of your undying eternal Love and your precious HOLY SPIRIT! We realize Father that they cannot change anything that has happened. But, they can go forth together keeping, renewing and once again honoring their vows. Father we realize that much spiritual warfare is about them. We realize that it wants to divide and separate them. We ask Lord that they invite you into the messiness to bring about order! Lord we realize that ALL of your promises are true. We ask that you endow them with the necessary strength and wisdom to endure.
Father, WE ASK that you would knit their hearts closely together and allow nothing else to come between them. Lord we ask that they both take personal inventory, repent and seek forgiveness for any wrong doing. We pray that they extend love and patience to one another and that the lines of communication, sensitivity as well as understanding are once again opened. We ask that you will allow all the pain, hurt suffering and disappointment to begin to subside. Lord we ask that forgiveness is welcomed by each of them. Lord we ask that you would allow your JOY to flow once again from heart to heart between them. Father, we ask that you direct them as they seek you first in building trust, transparency and both physical and emotional intimacy. Father we pray peace over their household. Lord we Thank You for being who You are and we realize that ALL the power, ALL the honor and ALL the glory belongs to You now and forever, and for this we give you the PRAISE. In the WONDERFUL name of JESUS ….…
Food for thought “Before” and “After” you say I DO.
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JESUS CHRIST the HOPE of GLORY!
Father, we come in the name of Jesus to thank you for this glorious and wonderful day that you have made! We thank you Lord for your Word that you have given us as a guide as to how we should live! We Thank you Lord that the Word of the Old Testament was fulfilled through Jesus Christ our LORD! Father, Your Word is timeless it is alive and powerful! We thank you Lord for your Holy Spirit that you have given us to be with us and guide us to all TRUTH! Father we thank you that you allowed your Son Jesus Christ, who lived a perfect sinless life, to die on the cross for us in our place! He was your word wrapped in flesh! For this we THANK YOU! He conquered sin in the flesh so He could be the only perfect example to each and every one of us both saved as well as the unsaved! “To be born of the virgin Mary! To suffer under Pontius Pilate, who was then crucified died and was buried. On the third day He arose from the dead!He then arose with ALL POWER! Father for this we THANK YOU!
We realize Father it is because of your Love, Grace and Mercy we exist! That we as your children are supposed to be “in the world but not of the world!” Father, I/ we thank you for your word you have given us to govern our lives by! Not in a legalistic rigid manner, but in a way that pleases you! We Thank you Lord, that you have already blessed us with every spiritual blessing through CHRIST JESUS! We pray Lord that we continuously learn to live our lives in a way that your light is able to shine through us! Convict us and bring sincere repentance… Forgive us for any and all of our shortcomings, Lord! Thank you Lord for letting us know that we have a place in your body and you are not a respecter of persons! Help us to live before you in our homes, on the job, in the marketplace and where ever we are. Let us not pattern ourselves after the world. But let the world see you in us! We pray that your Universal Church seeks your will above all else for you are returning for a Church without spot or wrinkle! Father give us the sincere desire to seek wholeheartedly above all else your spiritual discernment and wisdom so we are not deceived by the many deceptions and manipulations of man to pull us away from our center. “Create in us clean hearts and renew the right spirit within us!” Keep us on the straight and Narrow!
Help us Lord to look to You from which our help comes from as we overcome evil with good! You are our light and our salvation, because of this we have no one to fear! We realize that you are ALWAYS with us to lead, guide and protect us from seen and unseen dangers! Father we need you in a world that continues to put your principles for daily living on the back burner! We realize Father that you can return at any moment! Help us to prepare for your return as though you were to come at anytime! Again Father we thank you for all your blessings, past present and future!
In the name of JESUS we ask that you fill us with the presence of Your precious HOLY SPIRT! Lead us in the path of your righteousness! For it is in you “We live and move and have our being” In the mighty Name of Jesus! Amen & AMEN!
TO GOD BE THE GLORY!!!
God knows your thoughts, motives, desires and intentions. He even knows why and what you are praying for before you make your request known! God’s omniscience is often overlooked. Omniscience means God has universal awareness, understanding and insight. There is nothing that is said, thought about or done, anywhere or any place that He is not aware of. Omnipotent means God virtually has infinite unlimited authority or influence. Omnipresence is another attribute that solely belongs to God. God is everywhere at all times. How do I access the Father? Jesus is the door. Jesus is the way to the Father! It is through prayer we communicate with Him. Once you truly commit your life to Jesus Christ you are adopted into the family of God. He is the one and only Almighty Sovereign God!
Did you know that prayer is the key to your relationship with the Lord? Prayer is simply communication with God. Prayer is a supplication or expression that should be expressed earnestly and sincerely. Prayer is often sometimes inaudible. God tells us in His Word that we should pray without ceasing. Prayer in this circumstance is essentially a state of mind. God even tells us to go into your closet and close the door and pray to your Father who is unseen. “Then your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.” He can open doors no man can close. God is so GOOD! Prayer time with God will give you a healthy and clear conscience. Prayer is not always asking God for something. We should readily thank God for all He has done when we pray. It is in HIM we move and live and have our being! God is truly worthy of our thanks and praise!
If you are a child of GOD you should relish your personal prayer time with your Father. God is aware of what we need as well as what we do not need. This is why it is so important that we are honest and sincere when we call upon His name. Remember prayer is not always asking God for something! It is not something we just do in the presence of others to get their attention. But when others are in attendance you should include them in prayer. Prayer is not just mere words we utter repetitively. Prayer is not a time to just let those who are present know how you feel. The effectiveness is not determined by the cadence, tone or volume of your voice. It is not just a time to just emotionally charge others. It really is the content and posture of your heart that concerns God. To humbly and sincerely usher oneself into the presence of the Lord one must relinquish self. Any unconfessed sin hinders your prayer encounter. With God you must be real! When you truly enter into the presence of the Lord it can change the unchangeable. Prayer can heal a broken heart, life, home or relationship. The things that are impossible with man are possible with God! “Oh give thanks unto the Lord for He is GOOD and His mercy endureth forever!” It is important when we pray, that we pray, God’s will be done in our lives.
The prophet Jeremiah kept in constant prayer with the Lord. Jeremiah was called to remind Israel of the consequences of disobedience. Jeremiah fervently reminded them of their immoral behavior. The religious establishment plotted to silence Jeremiah. Jeremiah was discouraged. to the point he began to wonder why he was not allowed to just die in his mother’s womb. In his despair Jeremiah cries out to the Lord. He tries to keep quiet since he is constantly mocked for proclaiming God’s Truth. The Word of the Lord is so vehement in his soul that he can not contain it. This is when he says “His Word is in my heart like fire. A fire shut up in my bones.” Jeremiah knew that they were waiting for him to slip. Jeremiah was maturing as a prophet. He knew that the Lord wanted him to continue. He even went so far to tell them if they put him to death that his innocent blood would be on their hands. When the Lord gives you an assignment it is very important that you keep in constant communication with Him. When pressured to conform it is important to be transformed by the renewing of your mind by the Word of God. God in His time will bring everything to the light. God will never lead you to do anything that goes against his principles. Jeremiah’s life demonstrates how important it is to remain faithful to God. Sometimes we must forego the support of others rather than disobey God. Prayer is the key to help you stay focused if you are ever faced with such a situation.
Did you know God can not be manipulated? There is a big difference between uniformity and unity! It is not necessary to manipulate situations or people to get your way. This is why it is important to pray and ask God if something is in His will for you. God allows many things. He did not create us to be robots. Proverbs tell us that there is a way that seems right to man? But the end will eventually lead to destruction. Did you know sometimes your way may be out of the will of God? You only hinder the ultimate plan that God has for your life. God wants us to be disciplined. Daily worship and prayer is crucial. This will strengthen your daily spiritual walk. It will also sharpen your ability to discern!
The Scriptures clearly tells us that the prayers of the righteous are powerful! Life is full of snares for the believer. Wide road travelers are plentiful. Fewer desire to travel the narrow way. When we lift Holy hands to Him we acknowledge and invite His presence! We serve an all knowing and wise God! Denial will keep you in the dark. Honesty really is the best policy! God’s angels encamp around those who have committed themselves to His will and His way. This is why His Word is so marvelous! God will direct you through His Word! He will even warn you. God is faithful! He is the ultimate Father He will provide a way out of no way. Personal as well as corporate “Prayer Time” are essential to the body of Christ. We must learn to relinquish our will and strive to choose God’s way.
Did you know that Jesus withstood great persecution and mistreatment? They even called Him a devil. The enemy is the father of lies. He always cloaks or distorts the truth! He always mixes Truth and error. That is when you know that something is not of God! But don’t be dismayed it will only last for a season. Oh! But remember “What a Friend we have in Jesus!” We are to carry everything to Him in prayer. Remember Jeremiah? Sometimes not responding at all is a good idea. Exercising your spiritual muscles will strengthen your walk. God never tempts us to do anything. As you take time daily for your personal worship you will begin to respond differently. Practice “praying without ceasing!” To be a disciple means you actually learn how to discipline yourself to respond in a way that pleases God. You embrace repentance in lieu of accepting denial.
You must begin to exercise self control! You cannot please God and man! God’s way is always the best way. God’s weapons are not carnal. God tells us to “pray for them that despitefully use you!” You see it is really not about how things appear to others. What is important is what God knows! He knows the posture of our hearts. Remember He knows the TRUTH! He also knows when something is not true! He knows everything!
The time we spend here on earth is relatively short in comparison to the time we spend in eternity with God! There is no need to be afraid. But you must be aware evil is about us. God can and will protect you from all evil. Remember the disciples sample prayer? God can and will deliver you from evil! You can genuinely smile or not respond improperly in the midst of trials and persecution. This does not mean that you are in a delusionary frame of mind. Quite the contrary. It just means your focus is on God rather than the situation. Your character will be strengthened and your Faith and Trust will be renewed. Remember with Jesus as the conductor life becomes a symphony! God will free you! Jesus really did die for us to live differently. This is why His Word tells us “Be very careful, then, how you live-not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead be filled with the SPIRIT! Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The majority of the work of God’s Church is “Beyond The Walls.” Yes, the work within the walls is important. Many work within the walls. Many live to please those within the walls rather than live to please God. I want to share something with you it is a lot easier to please God. God positions His children in different places. “The earth really is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof the world and them that dwell therein.” It is not necessary to jockey for a position when you know that God has a place in the body for you. We must continue to pray for those who are shackled by sin within and without the walls. Who really do not know that the gates of Hell will not prevail against God’s True Church. This scripture is not talking about the physical structure. There is not one iota of doubt in my mind that I am God’s child. If you really know Him you should feel the same way. It is an inexpressible comfort when you have a real personal encounter with the Lord. God is so great! Praise God for His Word.
Did you know that there is only one true Church? If He came to your home would He be welcomed? If He came to your job or your place of business would you acknowledge Him? Honestly ask yourself if Jesus came to your church service would He really be welcomed? Perhaps, only if He were to tithe? Perhaps if he dressed how you think he should? Are you sure of what kind of heart you have? Perhaps if he would conform to your order of service? Only if He sits where you think He should sit? Would you betray Him like Judas? Remember when he threw the money changers out? Jesus said that His Church should be a house of prayer! Did you know that Jesus can provide and will provide for everything you need without manipulating others to give out of guilt? I believe He did say that “HE WOULD SUPPLY ALL OF OUR NEEDS….” Not some but all!
God welcomes repentance! Repent means to change. To turn your mind, heart, body and soul in the direction God is leading. To abandon the prideful direction of having to do things your way and humbly move towards God. You must be willing to admit it when you are wrong. To embrace Truth pleases God! God really wants us to live victoriously. Remember He is omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent. God is there for you. God has a plan for the lives of each of His children. So there is really no need to be jealous. Your position in the body is the capacity in which you function. Who you are is God’s child. By the way “He is not a respecter of persons”. God really does know and see what we do. It is much better to just want the things that God wants you to have, to desire to live out HIS WILL in your life!
There is much peace when you really know you are walking in the path of RIGHTEOUSNESS! How will you know when God is leading you? This is why it is so important to pray and obey! This will help you not get sidetracked by what others say or do! Know that God has power over darkness. Again it is during your prayer time you can be refueled and prepared for the fiery darts. God let’s nothing come our way that He is not aware of. It is our responsibility to respond in a manner that pleases Him! This will give you a clear conscious. Remember God’s weapons are not carnal. If you don’t stand for God you will fall for anything! When you are adorned with God’s full spiritual armor the shield of faith with extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one! Just exercise patience and pray. God is the author and finisher of our faith. He has given each of His children a measure of faith. “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.
Have you been waiting on the Lord to answer your prayer? Are you uncertain as to what direction to go? Are you physically sick, mentally disturbed or depressed or just at your wits end? Are you worried, discouraged or confused? Are you experiencing anxiety or restlessness? Are you caught up in some type of addiction? Or are you just plain tired of the same ole….? Are you looking for something different in your life? Do you know if you are really walking in the will of the Lord? God is always speaking we just have to get better at listening. Have you ever thought about what to do as you wait on His response? What ever your situation may be good or bad. How about just try thanking God daily for who He is! Try embracing abiding in the fruit of His Spirit! God is truly worthy of our praise. God already knows what is going on. Yes, it’s okay to talk to Him anytime? He tells us to “pray without ceasing.” But while you are waiting for a response how about listening to some of the things He has already told us? Just try spending time delighting your self in His Word. Rest assured you will begin to see clearer, feel better and experience His peace. What ever the case may be the Word of the Lord says; “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
God tells us not to be anxious for anything? This does not mean that you can not get excited. But if you continue to worry why pray? If you are still heavy laden. Guess who is carrying your burden? You are. “Oh ye of little faith.” Yes, God wants you to be concerned. But first He wants us “to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness.” So if you are feeling anxious. It means that it is important to check yourself. Check yourself by what someone thinks about you? By what someone says about you or by whatever …………? Of course not! The point is we are to take everything to God and be thankful whatever the outcome. Trust God and know He really does know what is best! If you have truly done this you will not be anxious. The peace of God will keep you. It will guard your heart and your mind. Not because I say so. But, because He says so and His Word is true. There is power in truly knowing God and power in knowing His marvelous Word. His Word is true!
God wants to be in every aspect of your life. But He does not force Himself on you. He does not have to. God is not like us that He has to go somewhere. He is already everywhere! “It is in Him we move and live and have our being.” There is nowhere that you can go where He is not. God is not like man, whatever our little finite minds think of Him, He is so much more! His Word says “if you make your bed in hell He is there.” If you have truly accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior you do not even have to worry about going to hell. Ephesians 1 tells us “Having believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession- to the praise of His glory.” There is peace and joy when you know that you truly belong to God! It is so very important to know God’s Word. God does not want you to walk in the flesh. Ephesians 1 also tells us God wants to “give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe.” Do you really believe? This is why He says to be anxious for nothing! Jesus, Birth, Life, Death and Resurrection really does make all the difference in the world. It guaranteed Eternal Salvation for the true child of God. God’s Word has power! Only God is Sovereign! His Holy Spirit will illuminate His Word. It will be a “lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path.”
God says His peace will transcend the understanding of man. This does not mean it will take you out in a mystical never never land. Although we are in the world we are not supposed to be of the world. For example John the Baptist was a fore runner for Jesus Christ. John lived to please God! He went about telling others to “prepare for the coming of the Lord.” To “Repent!” The Word also tells you that they thought that he was strange. He dressed strange. He ate strange food. John even told the king he was wrong to marry his brother’s wife. John was aware that they did not understand him. But he was not looking to be understood. He knew that understanding really comes from God. When someone does not understand guess what? John knew where he was with the Lord. It is more important that you know where you are with the Lord. When this is the case you will experience His peace that surpasses the understanding of man. He will also guard your heart.
God’s Word is so precious. It is full of scenarios and situations to let us know that He has everything under His control. There was much division and strife within the Church then, just as it is now! Earnestly begin to study the Old Testament. You will find that there is nothing new under the sun. God truly is the Great “I AM” Meaning He is and always will be! Is anything to hard for God! If you really know His Word you should know better.
Colossians tells us that through His Son Jesus Christ He spoke everything into existence.
Now that is power! We never become the power. We have access to His power. Not for our own use, but to fulfill whatever His will is in our life. How do you even know what His will is? Just know, God will not direct you to do anything contrary to His Word. God loves us so much that He has given us His Son as our Savior. He has the power to save you from allowing sin to reign in your life. How do you do that? By being strengthened in your inner being. God’s LOVE surpasses the knowledge of man. Remember what He says about being anxious for nothing, through everything with prayer and thanksgiving……. Jesus Christ even became flesh for us. He was the Word of God wrapped in flesh! Now how can this be? It is by faith we know without a doubt His Word is true! Well what is faith? “Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” He tells us “it is through faith that we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.” God’s Word is so profoundly deep. It is through the faith that God has instilled in us we know that His Word is true. It really isn’t about us. It’s all about Him! He even tells us that it is “impossible to please Him without faith.”
How can you be sure if you have true faith? Faith is not just some magical force. It is a gift from God. There is much crime, deception, tragedy and natural disasters about us. This is just the beginning. Hold on, God has everything under His control! God has done so many wonderful things for us. He has given us a plethora of examples to enhance our trust and faith in Him. God even knows your name. Remember He is everywhere! Faith will help you to persevere, to endure, to not allow anything or anyone to take your eyes off the Lord. It does not mean that you will not go through some things. Quite the contrary. Jesus is our ultimate example. He is the only one who lived a sinless life. Look at all the things that they put Him through. He overcame sin in the flesh for us. To redeem us from the curse of sin. This does not mean that life will just be a bed of ease. No, you will have to go through some things. The key is what you do while going through. If you want His peace you have to do things His way. If you want Him to guard your heart? Guess what? You are going to have to do things His way.
God gives us an example of life akin to a race. Great spiritual rewards await us when we do things God’s way. But in this spiritual race we do not run for the rewards. It also goes far above and beyond earthly merits or recognition. God knows why you do or do not do some things. He sees beyond the surface. Our eternal rewards cannot be altered by man. Hallelujah! Let’s look at a few of His examples. His Word tells us that Moses parents hid him through faith. Moses persevered because He saw Him who was invisible. His focus was on God. By faith Jacob blessed both of Joseph’s sons. By faith Abraham offered His son Isaac as a sacrifice. (By the way Isaac was not a little boy at the time. He was a full grown man.) We no longer have to offer blood sacrifices. Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice. Now we offer Him the sacrifice of our PRAISE! By faith Noah warned the people of the upcoming flood. (Guess what? It had never rained.) Through faith only Noah and His family were saved. By faith Abel offered a better sacrifice than his brother. I believe that Cain’s gift came from the ground that God had just cursed? This is really deep. His Word even tells us that Enoch walked so closely with God he did not experience death. Enoch was commended as one that pleased God. God took Enoch. Not because he was so good. Only God is good. God does not need our permission to do anything. He is God all by Himself! Hallelujah! God tells us that when we walk in the Spirit there is no condemnation. Furthermore He says “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.”
Have you been waiting on the Lord to answer your prayer? Are you experiencing any of the things I mentioned earlier? Try delighting yourself in God’s Word. Repent! Try doing things His way. Sincerely draw near to God. Guess what? He will draw nigh to you. God’s Word has cleansing power. God’s Word is true. He knows if your heart is genuinely sincere. Hebrews says; “We are sure that we have a clear conscious and desire to live honorably in every way. I particularly urge you to pray so that I may be restored to you soon. May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that Great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him, through Jesus Christ to Him be glory for ever and ever, Amen.” Do you want the peace that surpasses the understanding of man? Just remember to be anxious for nothing, in everything by prayer and petitions…….. Cast your cares and burdens upon the Lord. He will sustain you. “He will guard your heart and your mind. All praises be to the King of Kings and the Lord of lords! Let’s give Him the sacrifice of our PRAISE! To God be the GLORY!