~ “TRUST in the LORD with ALL your heart, and lean not to your own understanding. In ALL your ways acknowledge HIM and HE WILL make your path straight…”
Proverbs 3 ~
“The earth is the LORD’S and the fullness thereof the world and them that dwell therein…” Psalm 24 ~
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord…”
Romans 8 ~
“For it is in HIM we move and live and have our being…”
Acts 17 ~
“The TRUTH SHALL set you FREE…”
John 8 ~
~ Thoughts to Ponder ~
We as believers CANNOT follow the ways of this world and live a life that is pleasing to the LORD! It really is not logical. Take a few moments or more of your time daily and meditate upon the WORD of GOD! Be encouraged, convicted if warranted and also inspired to keep moving forward growing in HIS Grace! HIS WORD is necessary Spiritual Food for our souls. It refuels, refreshes and revives us to live for HIM! Stay connected to the LORD and “PRAY without ceasing” all throughout your day!
We the people are HIS Church. We are supposed to be the LIGHT of this world… take time periodically and see if you are on the narrow path that leads to Him or the broad road that leads to destruction… Whenever necessary; REPENT & REFOCUS! Regularly take spiritual baths in HIS WORD. It has amazing miraculous cleansing POWER! We the people are to be HIS Church! Every day is a day to Worship & Praise our LORD! True worshipers must “Worship HIM in SPIRIT & in TRUTH” whenever or wherever we worship! We are the Ecclesia meaning: HIS worldwide church is a congregation of believers; we are the collective body of Christian believers regarded as actually constituting one Universal Church.
Each day is a precious GIFT from the LORD! We are to live each day as though our Lord was going to return. JESUS CHRIST is going to return for HIS CHURCH!
Know GOD & HIS WORD for yourself! HE WILL NEVER lead us to do anything that goes against HIS WORD!!! DON’T ALLOW ANYONE TO MAKE YOU FEEL COMFORTABLE IN SIN. Don’t be deceived. SIN is what actually separates us from GOD! PRAY for discernment! Draw closer to the LORD and commit to spend time in HIS presence daily. HE will write HIS WORD upon the table of your heart. HIS HOLY WORD is the “BIBLE” = It is Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth! Know and embrace HIS WORD for yourself!
GOD has already placed within us EVERYTHING we need to do and accomplish ALL that HE has created us for… In HIM we CAN discover EVERYTHING that we will ever need for Life & Living. HIS WORD IS ALIVE! Things come & go but with the LORD there WILL ALWAYS be more… In HIS time, HE WILL also; “give you the desires of your heart” that are in HIS WILL for you! Daily walk in the LIGHT of HIS WORD! Be encouraged knowing that everywhere you are GOD is with you!
Dressing Up for Prom and dressing down for worship!
Today many feel it is better to dress down for worship so everyone will be comfortable. They think that this will put everyone at ease? But if you are attending a Sweetheart Dance, Prom or Fashion Show or celebrating Valentine’s Day it’s proper etiquette to dress up. When Christmas or Easter rolls around you can dress up if you like as well. You want to look nice for those pictures with Santa or the Easter Bunny. However you still might get a few stares if you come to worship looking like you are wearing your tithes and offerings!
A little humor is always good!
Worship adoration, devotion and praise are important. We ought to worship and praise our Lord daily. Imagine if every believer really did. What a grand marvelous time we would have whenever we all got together! Sunday is important! CHRISTmas is important! Resurrection Day is important! Honoring God is important. It is a time for reflecting upon all that the Lord has done for us. Jesus Christ’s sinless life, crucifixion, death & resurrection are all very important. Every time we come to together it is important to worship the Lord! Sunday Worship really is the ultimate Red Carpet Affair! Jesus Christ shed His precious blood for the sins of the world! What is more important than that?
How important is it to dress for worship?
Whatever happened to proper etiquette or being well groomed? Just because? We have thrown it out the window and replaced it with “dress down.” It is the new way to express you. To show that you are humble? Or is it just plain laziness? Or is it conforming to the world’s standards? Here is the dilemma it is hard to tell sometimes where am I. Am I in worship or am I on a cruise? No I do not have Alzheimer’s; if I did it wouldn’t matter!
God is The Most High God above Him is no other. Worship is about us recognizing Him as the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords! The Word teaches us; “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what GOD’S WILL IS – HIS GOOD, pleasing and PERFECT WILL.” Romans 12. So why have we; God’s Church begun to conform to the dress standards of the world?
When we dress up we look like we are material right? Well clothes are made out of material. Just because you have on a pair of jeans and a tee shirt does not mean that you are any less material! Have you seen the price of some of these jeans & T shirts? You can be material and have nothing…
Did you know that children behave better when they are dressed? Taking the time to dress them tells them you care. If it is just in a T shirt let it be neat and tidy. At the park let them at least go in clean if they come out dirty fine… They feel better about themselves when they know you give them TLC as well! Even they know innately that when you are in certain attire you need to stop fooling around and pay more attention.
I know when you are dressed up it means that you are too cute to worship? Lord Help us!
Notice how the Royal family in England is always fit for the occasion. Even when they dress down they properly present themselves. Unless you catch them under the privacy of their own residences under a camera you will not see them dressed scantly or inappropriately. In their private residences they should have the freedom and privacy to walk around as they please even if it’s nude. Remember Adam and Eve were naked and not ashamed. How would anyone know unless they infringed upon their privacy rights. We can learn a thing or two from them. Well, guess what nothing or no one is more important than GOD! Through Jesus Christ we are a part of The Most High God’s Royal Family!
It is hard for me to believe that Solomon via God’s instructions built that first magnificent Temple for seven long years; then said dress down or wear your sweats. Notice how detailed the temple and its contents are described in the Word. I do not think in its entire splendor that the people came dressed like “ragamuffins” when they came to worship!
We have missed the point!
When slavery was prominent in America the slaves even knew that on Sunday or during worship that they dressed up and presented themselves in proper attire. It was a time to leave the tasks and hardships of slavery, lay them aside momentarily and focus on worshipping the Lord! Even if they did not have shoes they took the time to clean up well and present themselves in their best attire! The African American worship service in general continues to encourage dressing up to a degree in your better attire. Some opt to dress down in the warmer months; however I believe that one should still dress no less than they do for work or school. As people of color we were taught to recognize that it’s important to continue to present yourself in proper dress attire!
Revelation gives us an excellent visual of the “New Jerusalem” the Holy City in Heaven. It is fabulously splendid. It is absolutely Awesome, so much so that the streets are paved with translucent gold. The walls are made of fine gemstones of sapphire, emeralds, sardonyx, chalcedony, jasper and… The twelve gates are made of a fine single humongous pearl! WOW! Think about it! Hmm just does not seem to me that throwing on a wrinkled T shirt and a pair of old baggy jeans, skirt or leggings would be appropriate! No wonder why the ambiance in worship has drastically changed right along with the dress code! Many do not respect the sacredness of worship anymore.
They are now trying to pass laws so that it’s okay if you have a gun license you can come packing a gun!
Foreign countries uphold a better standard for worship than we do here in the United States. For example when we visited Vatican City in Rome we were told that in order to enter St. Peter’s Basilica the women needed to be covered properly and would not be able to enter unless they were properly attired! They maintain a standard that one must at least be presentable. After all is not the Church the Bride of Christ! Ponder and think about that for a moment! Would you dress up if you were meeting the President?
Ponder this for a moment. You are welcome to disagree. I know it’s because I am a child of the 50’s! Everyone wore a tie and dressed up for most occasions way back when. No, it’s because there is nothing, no occasion, dance or prom or no one more important than God! Therefore we need to put our best self forward. God knows us all from the inside out! We are not fooling Him. At least we can honor Him in how we present ourselves for worship! There is always an exception to the rule. If you are homeless that’s different, if you are mentally ill that’s different, if you really do not have anything to wear that’s different too.
“Come as you are!” Yes, but you will not “Stay as you are!” The Word of God transforms us from the inside out. At some point you will begin to feel better about yourself and want to step it up a bit! Why is that? Believers are supposed to live each day as though the Lord was going to return. If Heaven is going to be your Eternal Home I suggest you begin here on earth getting prepared for Kingdom living! Even if you decide to wear jeans and a T shirt, let be done neatly!
“Your will be done Lord! Your Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven.” Lord we are down here waiting on your return when everyone will see you breaking through the sky! Come Lord!
GOD Dwells In The Hearts of HIS People!
Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty. We in America have a freedom that you just don’t find in the rest of the world. We have freedom of speech, freedom to vote, freedom to live and go where and when we please. But most importantly we have the freedom to worship. There are many types of worship services but there is only one true God. The only way to worship Him is in spirit and truth. On our many journeys throughout the world the LORD has allowed us to see many marvelous things. On them all the presence of the LORD has been apparent.
On our trip to Athens Greece and Istanbul Turkey I was able to see some of the world’s most exquisite architecture. Turkey is a country that is 95% Moslem. In Turkey there is the renowned Hagia Sophia Cathedral. It was built for the Christian community to reflect the beauty that Solomon’s Temple once beheld. In spite of its elaborate intricate handiwork full of gold mosaic tiles, marble and brick walls, it is now a museum. It also contains various artifacts derived from Greek mythology and its continence is a shadow of it’s once intended purpose. Ironically across from it is the beautiful Sultanahmet mosque. Its known as the Blue mosque due to an extravagant array of blue mosaic tiles. Adorned with its intricate splendor and stately statueous marble columns and stained glass windows. It is scrupulously maintained and it is a place of worship for the Moslem community. Turkey is full of ornately designed mosques and Mohammed is whom they worship.
Words cannot express my gratitude to God for the things my eyes have beheld. The scriptures continuously came to my mind as I walked through the Hagia Sophia. “God does not dwell in a temple made by hand’s” In His time; “God is coming back for a CHURCH without spot or wrinkle.” “It is in HIM we move & live and have our being…” “Where the SPIRIT of the LORD is there is liberty…” We can not confine GOD & HIS majestic magnificent omnipresence to the confines of a structure made by human hands. Yes we can worship Him within the walls… But GOD’S CHURCH consists of HIS people from ALL over this world. God lives within the hearts of HIS people that have accepted HIS SON JESUS CHRIST into their hearts as SAVIOR & LORD!!! Our bodies are the Temple of the living God. We must ask continuously for the infilling presence of HIS HOLY SPIRIT! There is absolutely no doubt in my mind to the unmerited grace the Lord has bestowed upon all of us. Truly the Lord Is patient, loving & kind.
We had a most interesting journey. The one thing the tour guide who was of Moslem decent (in Turkey along with our guide we were required to have a Turkish guide as well) said that stuck with me was “why would a powerful God allow His Temple to turn into a museum?” I could not help but respond and say; “God does not live in a Temple made by the hands of man…” My point is and was God is so gracious and kind that He allows us so much freedom. He even gives us the freedom to choose who or what we want to worship. God wants HIS true worshipers to Worship Him; “In Spirit & in TRUTH!” Whenever or wherever I lift up Holy Hands, to Him and Him only my heart is eternally grateful. It is by His grace and His grace alone are we saved. God is truly worthy of all the PRAISE!
In Turkey is the city of Ephesus. There are miles and miles of ruins. Original artifacts, columns etc. and remains to testify to the fact Ephesus existed. To this day approximately only 10% of it has been uncovered. It is still currently under excavation. Primitive hand tools are used in order to preserve whatever archeological finds are uncovered. Paul wrote the book of Ephesians to the church at Ephesus. Just look at God! Despite the fact Turkey is a Moslem country Ephesus remains a monument to Christians of God’s eternal presence, grace and mercy.
Some of my most invigorating spiritual enlightening moments were spent in Athens Greece. Here I hold dear to heart many cherished memories. We together walked up the steep incline to the Acropolis saturated with aged columns made of marble. The Parthenon and majestic ruins were filled with slippery marble laden paths. The highlight was when I observed my husband humbly climb on his hands & knees “Mars Hill!” The infamous hill that the Apostle Paul speaks about in the book of Acts. How interesting when we approached Mars Hill there was a woman preaching to a congregation out in the open, under the beautiful canopy of the blue skies. Once my husband determined it was safe I too climbed up on my hands and knees to meet him and we together Worshiped, Praised & Thanked the Lord!
The Book of Acts teaches us “And it will come to pass in the last days saith God I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.” Paul spoke concerning an altar with an inscription representing the unknown god on Mars Hill. That unknown God is the God I love, worship and adore. The only true and living God. He is truly the Great ” I AM” The Lord is Jehovah Raah meaning; My Shepherd! Mars hill today is in a magnificent open place. High above Athens for all to see. (I will forever cherish what it felt like sitting there and praising God for all He has done!!!) I AM NOT ASHAMED OF THE GOSPEL! It’s walls and canopy are the blue firmament that God Himself spoke into existence through the Word. That Word is Jesus Christ wrapped in flesh. Who sacrificed His life for the sins of the entire world!!!
It is amazing to see since our visit all the things that have come upon Greece. One would never have imagined that such a pleasant, warm, robust inviting place could experience such a decline. We should never take for granted the freedom we have here in America. Lord Help them… I am thankful that America has been founded upon Christian Principles. May we not take that for granted… Yes please; “God Bless America!”
The gates of hell will not prevail against the Church of God. Glory! Glory! His TRUTH is marching on!!!
“The earth truly is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof the world and them that dwell therein.” There is not a place that can be built that can contain the fullness of His majestic awesomeness. The early church had no building they met in homes. We have dedicated our home to be a place where God’s way prevails. The heart of each of His Children is where His true Church abides. There is nothing wrong with a church made by hands. But the focal point should not be a hierarchy laden with cliques, clichés, how do we pay our bills programs and solemn auxiliaries; a mere shadow of what God originally intended. There is One Worldwide International Christian Church in the eyes of the Lord!
“Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty.” We should praise Him in song, WORD and deeds. We are not saved by works. But our works display our faith. Our main focus should be to cultivate an environment where God receives the preeminence in everything. Whenever or wherever we worship & Praise the Lord we should leave with a desire to want to grow even closer to HIM! Christianity is supposed to be or a daily lifestyle. We as believers can continue to grow in His Grace & Knowledge as we embrace and implement His principles within our lives until the day He calls us home. Then we get to live with Him through Eternity! Halllelllujah Amen!!! It is God’s Word and His power that will draw men, women, boys and girls from all cultures, creeds and colors worldwide. His Holy Spirit can and will change their lives when we sincerely spread this Awesome Gospel of Jesus Christ. Whether it be via T.V., radio, internet, in song, in person, taught or preached inclusively by the Spoken Word.
GOD dwells in the hearts & souls of HIS people HIS CHURCH!
Everyday; “TO GOD BE THE GLORY!!!