Today I was reminded of a story about a family on the East Coast who held a party to celebrate Christmas. As the guests arrived, they all threw their coats on a bed, and proceeded to celebrate, eating, drinking, opening gifts, etc. It was later discovered that the guests had actually thrown their coats on top of a baby, who was asleep on the bed, smothering the baby who died. They overlooked, or didn’t see the baby, as they had gotten caught up in their partying.
This was a very sad situation, but is also an eye opener as to how Jesus can get “smothered” during Christmas celebrations, ignorantly or deliberately. Our world is moving more and more in the direction of trying to remove Him from being the center of this holiday. Have you noticed that many, particularly in our work places, are afraid or will hesitate in saying have a “Merry Christmas” ? Instead they will say “Happy Holidays”. Some will call Christmas trees “holiday trees”. In our neighborhoods, instead of Nativity Scenes on front lawns of houses, we see Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and other cartoon or fictitious characters.
Christmas seems to be the only holiday where many don’t want to call it by it’s name, particularly in our work places. In the United States, we seem to have no problem saying any other holiday’s name, like Independence Day, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, President’s Day, etc. But when it comes to saying have a “Merry Christmas”, some of us stutter.
Jesus is the reason for this season, and every other season. For all things were made by HIM and for HIM. This holiday is a Christian holiday, set aside to acknowledge the birth of Jesus Christ. “FOR unto us a CHILD is born, unto us a SON is given: and the government shall be upon HIS shoulder: and HIS name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9
Read the following articles and be sure you Keep CHRIST in CHRISTmas!!
EMMANUEL “GOD WITH US!”
“GLORY to GOD in the HIGHEST, an on earth Peace, Goodwill toward men!” Luke 2.
If there was ever a time to PRAISE the LORD the time is NOW!
Notice that whenever you read, watch or hear the news it is not usually good! There is an overabundance of things going on all over the world. There are many natural disasters all about us the results are devastating… The economy was really down as well as unemployment a few years ago. Now they have begun to gradually climb… The lives of many were drastically impacted. Many loved ones have passed on making their transition to eternity! Many corporations have closed, many have lost businesses, careers, jobs, estates, homes, stocks, possessions and yet … Immorality has become acceptable?
Notice how scandalous the Political Campaign for The President of the United States has become!
Don’t fear because GOD is OMNIPOTENT! HE IS The ONE TRUE GOD of Restoration. In HIM nothing is really ever lost. GOD IS FAITHFUL HE will & can RESTORE! There is ALWAYS HOPE in the LORD!
Marriage & family is ordained by God! The powers that be and principalities yield much spiritual warfare that seeks to break up many families and put in place a different way of living. Redefining the marital roles… Who would have ever thought a few years ago that the US Supreme Court would vote against the WORD of GOD in favor of “same sex unions?”
LORD open our Spiritual Eyes!!!
Disloyalty and manipulation, justified, along with works of the flesh and deception slowly but surely intertwining itself in many relationships… Children tossed to and fro within unstable environments. This is not God’s Way! Seemingly harmless it has opened the door for much chaos… Stress levels are constantly being elevated… No wonder; Suicide,divorce, sicknesses, diseases and depression are abounding!
“The wheat and the tares continue to grow together in HIS CHURCH! Again no need for fear. The WORD of GOD continues to be fulfilled in these “Last Days” Just learn to; “BE STILL & KNOW!” PRAY FOR DISCERNMENT!
There is also a resurgence of discrimination in many shapes and forms and on a multitude of levels. There is an enormous amount of oppression and loss of freedom as well as invasion of privacy & racial profiling; all due to the overwhelming threat of foreign and domestic terrorism as well as suppression & oppression…
A host of false teachers controlling and leading many astray… Many are living in fear… But look at GOD! “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?” Psalm 27.
It is important to know who you are through Jesus Christ! In HIM you can have the VICTORY!
We are living in a time that just about anything goes! What God has said is wrong and what is wrong is accepted as right. What is Good is called evil & evil is called good! Many are trying to make what is right in the eyes of the majority rule and become accepted as the norm… Lord help us!
Many seek to make others comfortable in sin. Instead of saying thus said the Lord worldly affections dominate rather than the TRUE LOVE of GOD HE defines in I Corinthians 13. GOD’S LOVE never fails! “It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres… ” For many it is hard to discern what true love really is.
Yes indeed! The Word of God is being fulfilled! Truly we are in the last days! “No one knows the day or the hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man…” Matthew 24. So it is today!
Begin to prepare each day as though you were to see the Lord face to face! There is ALWAYS HOPE in the LORD!
When Noah was building the ark there were millions and millions of people here on earth. The world had become a place where “anything goes” it was no longer the paradise that God had intended for His people. They allowed themselves to become caught up in the ways of the world. Fewer and fewer listened to the Lord! The spiritual warfare was rampart and satan continued to deceive many! It is a little frightening to see just how quickly God’s principles were laid aside… Imagine it had never rained! It may be hard to fathom or comprehend but in the whole entire world there was only one man and his family that was listening to the Lord. This man was Noah; he was a righteous obedient man and obeyed the Lord in spite of what was going on in the world.
“The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The Lord was grieved that He had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. So the Lord said, “I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth – men and animals, and creature that move along the ground, and the birds of the air- for I am grieved that I have made them.” Genesis 6.
The world had become flooded with evil and this brought a greater flood upon them that destroyed the world. What God had said not to do had become the norm! Does any of this sound familiar? Look at what is going on today? There is much to learn and ponder in the Word of God! It is Powerful and “ALIVE” it is All True! The Gospel is going forth all throughout the world. Time is winding up! From this magnificent illustration we can learn the importance of listening to the Lord rather than compromising His Word in order to be accepted by the masses. God will Never direct you to do anything that goes against His WORD!
EMMANUEL GOD is with us!
Jesus told us “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore go and make disciples of ALL nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to OBEY EVERYTHING I HAVE COMMANDED you. And surely I AM with you ALWAYS to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28.
Know God’s Word for yourself! There is only ONE TRUE CHURCH! We the collective body of believers all around this world that was created through HIM are His Church! We are the body of Jesus Christ! PRAISE GOD!
God is so gracious, loving, kind and Sovereign! He has provided a way back to Him. He has given us a path by which we must travel and Jesus has paved that way! “He is the Way The TRUTH and the LIFE.” It is the Narrow Way that is His way!
Today it is important for us to fully embrace the Truth of His Word! He has given us many examples as to what happens when we ignore, disobey or lay aside His Word! Know just like in the time of Noah many will not understand you. Had you ever thought about where were all those multitudes of people that Jesus healed, fed and saved when He was being crucified? How many sat on the sidelines and said nothing! Just like then many did not really expect the outcome…
We too can expect not to be welcomed, maligned, mistreated, persecuted, misunderstood… But do not become disheartened. Become aware and continue to look to the Lord. Ask the Lord for wisdom and discernment to properly apply His Word to your life! “Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In All your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3.
We must learn to honor and esteem God’s Word above the ways of the world. No person, judge, king, prophet, prophetess, pastor, or priest was able to overcome sin in the flesh. Therefore God sent His only Begotten Son to come in the form of sinless flesh and overcome sin in the flesh for us! “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. That whosoever BELIEVES in Him shall not perish but have Eternal Life.” John 3. It within this verse one can gain spiritual acuity and focus on the Power of The Gospel of Jesus Christ! Jesus accepted the punishment for our sins and humbled Himself and was obedient through His death on the Cross! He took back what was lost and redeemed us and He arose with ALL Power! To believe means that you begin to take action and step out on Faith. You are a believer because you have given your life to the Lord and Believe, Trust and Embrace the full Gospel of Jesus Christ!
As you Celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ; Know that Emmanuel means God with us! Know without doubt that as a believer He abides in your heart! We must continually ask Him to fill us with His presence daily…
The GOOD NEWS!
JESUS CHRIST makes all the difference in the world! It is a wonderful, thoughtful, kind, loving gesture to give to others… So ENJOY this season of giving… However, make it a point to take time and spend some time with the Lord reflecting on ALL He has done for you! He TRULY is the GREATEST GIFT of ALL! We can ALWAYS find something to be THANKFUL for! REJOICE in HIM! We all continue to exist because of GOD! “For in HIM we live and move and have our being…” Act 17. Christmas is REALLY about JESUS CHRIST and not just the presents; but about HIS PRESENCE in your life! HE is our “KING of kings and LORD of lords! He is our PRINCE of PEACE! No matter what you can ALWAYS FIND LOVE, COMFORT and PEACE in HIM! “Be STILL & KNOW!” EMMANUEL “GOD IS WITH US!”
As we examine the life of Jesus Christ we can see that He encountered an enormous amount of spiritual warfare during His sinless life. We learn that He suffered much! Many of those he helped turned their backs on Him… The birth of Jesus Christ born to The Virgin Mary was a marvelous astonishing miraculous miracle! This glorious occasion changed the world forever! Jesus was dispatched from Heaven to defeat the enemy for us! His spectacular Victory was felt on earth and in Heaven!
We can offer Praise; because of Jesus Christ we can learn to “Worship Him in Spirit and in Truth!” It is because of Him being born in the flesh, living a sinless life, being crucified, then He died and was buried! He became the Holy, Pure, Sacrificial, Consecrated Lamb of God! He redeemed us through His precious blood. There is POWER in the BLOOD! He shed His blood as the ultimate sacrifice so we might have life and have it, more abundantly. Not only on earth, on this side of heaven but through eternity! How amazing! PRAISE GOD!
The GOOD NEWS!
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For He chose us in HIM before the creation of the world to be HOLY and blameless in His sight. In love He predestined us to be adopted as His sons (daughters) through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will – to the praise of His glorious Grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves. In Him we have the redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s Grace that He lavished on us with all Wisdom and Understanding. And He made known to us the mystery of His will according to His good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment to bring ALL things in heaven and on earth together under One Head, even, Christ…” Ephesians 1.
The GOOD NEWS!
There is a wealth of knowledge and security within the depths of the Holy Scriptures! Jesus was the WORD wrapped in sinless flesh! Jesus was born during one of the most difficult eras in history! Much political turmoil going on… From the very beginning there were those who avidly sought to destroy Him! How interesting, they were so intimidated by His extraordinary birth! As time passed He was treated atrociously, His integrity undermined, His character constantly questioned, He was beaten, maligned and yet; Jesus still magnificently fulfilled His earthly mission! This is why we ALL need Him as Savior & Lord! Through Him we are “more than conquerors!” Romans 8. He has provided us with His Holy Spirit the Comforter to lead, guide and protect us! We can always & forever TRUST GOD!
God has already BLESSED us with every spiritual blessing! The blessings of God go far beyond material or temporal they are eternal! Before we were ever born God chose us! God does not want us to be unaware or ignorant of the TRUTH of His WORD nor live in denial! He does not want His Word to be a secret! We must warn the people! He wants us to boldly proclaim “The GOOD NEWS!” The GOSPEL of Jesus Christ! The Word of God is His story. God is Sovereign! When we truly belong to Him we are to represent Him! We are to live out the principles of His Word in spite of what is happening in this world. Jesus is coming soon!
As we prepare to CELEBRATE the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ it is spiritually beneficial to keep in mind the many wonderful Blessings of the Lord! Jesus Christ is the most precious “GIFT” ever given by our Creator, Father and Lord! We can REJOICE in this Through eternity!
“For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given: and the government shall be on His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9. HALLELUJAH!
When we accept Jesus Christ as our personal Savior and Lord we have something to shout about! In every and any situation God will see you through! “God will never leave nor forsake you!” We can Praise Him throughout the year and forever more knowing that JESUS CHRIST is not only the “Reason for the Season” but the reason for LIFE and living through eternity!
GOD BLESS YOU! ~ MERRY CHRISTMAS & Have a Wonderfully Blessed NEW YEAR ~
“Now Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1. Faith is so important that it is mentioned over three hundred times in the BIBLE. Faith means to have a firm persuasion. Having Faith means much more than just to say you believe. It goes much further! Faith is developed through Prayer, Devotion, Bible Study, and the actual application of God’s Word to your life. Faith is also part of the Lord’s spiritual armor. It is “By Faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what is visible.” Hebrews 11:3. Faith is NOW not after the fact has materialized! “For we walk by Faith not by sight.” II Corinthians 5:7
When you truly trust God your Faith will see you through any and all circumstances or situations. Abel, Deborah, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses and Rahab, are just a few examples of the many that trusted and had Faith in God. Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets beheld many miracles, faced jeers, were stoned, saw walls fall, were persecuted, misunderstood, and mistreated yet accomplished their life purpose by trusting the Lord. Notice how they all sincerely aspired to live in the presence of the Lord. They had a personal and deep intimate relationship with Him. Hebrews commends them all for their Faith; “yet none of them received what had been promised.” It is by Faith we are strengthened inwardly! Jesus Christ dwells in our hearts through Faith.
Faith is NOW!
Hebrew defines Faith as something you cannot see. Faith without works is dead. When your Faith is truly in GOD you trust that in His time He will fulfill whatever it is that He has said or promised. Take a moment to take an open and honest personal inventory of everything that is happening in your life. Guess what God already knows as well! Despite your circumstances; good, bad, or indifferent you can rest assured that your Faith makes all the difference in the world as to how you will now proceed. In order to successfully run the race of life we must keep our focus on the Lord. Laying aside any weight or sin helps us to run with endurance. When life hurdles appear God will impart to you His patience and direction. You can not change anything that has happened “it is what it is” As you fix your eyes on “Jesus, the Author and perfector of our Faith” He will help you arise to the challenges as well as the celebrations of life. Your daily trust and reliance on God is where your true security and significance should reside. This will give you sure footing and strong solid rock foundational spiritual roots to help you withstand the storms of life. Your Joy in the Lord is where you will find strength when you keep your eyes on Him. The joy of the Lord is not contingent on your circumstance. Faith is NOW!
The key to being a Christian is the Faith we have in Jesus Christ. Do you know the importance of His sacrificial death on the cross that atoned for our sins? It was so we could live life to please Him! Did you know our lives, our homes, our marriages, families and our worship should reflect we are His children? How do we do this? Titus tells us that “You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self controlled, and sound in Faith, love and in endurance. To teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good…” The natural man or woman does not accept, value, nor understand the things of God. This is why the Word says to “let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus.” In order to understand the things of God it is crucial that you lay aside your way and your will and let His Word be a “lamp unto your feet and a Light to your path.” Having the proper perspective will teach you how very important it is to live life and study His Word for His approval and not the approval of man. This is why we are told to “Trust in the Lord will all of our hearts and lean not to our own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He will direct our path.” Proverbs 3: 5&6. Too often God is an after thought or optional choice when dealing with life. This compromise often has favorable results with man; yet results in moving you away from God. Learn to wait on God and patiently seek His way.
God’s way will give you peace and contentment that surpasses the understanding of man! God wants to be the Primary Force in your life. Being a Christian is really a chosen lifestyle. God does not force His way upon you. Faith produces commitment and faithfulness. It means to sincerely and earnestly attempt to live life to please God. Commence to truly Live, Sing, Worship and Praise Him. It really makes all the difference in the world! “LET the WORD of Christ dwell richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving THANKS to God the Father through Him” Colossians 3: 16&17.
God always has a better way. According to Ephesians He has already blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places. As His child we have been sealed and promised the gift of His Holy Spirit. God truly is faithful you can always count on Him! Now you must trust Him and step out on Faith. Remember Faith is not something that you can see. Always remember, you must exercise patience and your Faith and trust must rely in Him. He tells us if our Faith is “as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you” Matthew 17: 20. The key to this is you must desire His will to be done. It is with God we can do the impossible. This way He receives the credit. To GOD be the GLORY! God keeps His promises. You can fully trust God to work everything out for your good.
Always keep in mind that absolutely nothing gets by God. He knows all that is past, current and will be. Be encouraged knowing “God is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him as you have helped His people and continue to help them.” It is by Faith and patience we inherit His promises. We can patiently endure whatever is necessary because we know that God in His time will work everything out for our good. It is by Faith we accept His precious gift of eternal life. One of the most important elements in life is having Faith in GOD. “Without Faith it is impossible to please Him, for he, who comes to GOD, must believe, that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Romans 1:16& 17.
GOD IS FAITHFUL in His time you will reap the promises and He will give back, restore, refuel and replenish you in His time. God knows when you are sincere. We are living in interesting times. Just keep your eyes fixed on the Author and finisher of your Faith. God is able to “keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence without fault and with great Joy!” You can say Hallelujah anyhow! God is awesome! As I mentioned before Hebrews records in its “Hall of Faith” many Old Testament heroes who trusted in God and displayed their Faith in unique ways. Lay aside every weight and anything that hinders you from going forth in the Lord! When you truly believe; it will be a priority to live your life to please GOD! Faith results in faithfulness! Who or what are you faithful to? “Now Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” FAITH IS NOW!
America along with the world has been privileged to share a monumental, memorable phenomenon. Barak Obama becoming the 44th President of the United States of America is nothing short of a miracle! If you look closely and attentively throughout the corridors of America’s history you will find that what was thought to have been unheard of has happened. By the grace of God the “Impossible has become possible!”
It took faith, fortitude, stamina, dedication, persistence and perseverance to forge ahead against insurmountable odds for Barak Obama to pursue relentlessly the position of president. His winning the candidacy for the President of America reaches far beyond the United States. It has been said that his methodical, strategic campaign was a seamless, well planned, professionally skilled endeavor of any other candidate. This victory has brought about a much needed message of “Hope” and renewal of confidence within the American people. It also yields a restored “Faith in God.” The Word of God tells us that “Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen.” The Truth and promises of the scriptures have been “made alive.” “With God All things are possible.” One can surely appreciate the fact that the ” highway of possibilities” has been opened. The possible pathway of opportunities are boundless for our nation, the world and future generations to come.
Traveling throughout the world affords one the opportunity to broaden your perspective and experience and envision life through a much broader lens. I am thankful for having been afforded such an opportunity, to travel throughout the world along with my husband /pastor as well as in a group. The world is so very diverse with a plethora of multi cultural people, customs, religions and beliefs. All having such a broad assorted variety of lifestyles in which an innumerable amount of peoples with diverse backgrounds live together. But regardless as to where I have traveled, from Mexico to Aruba, the Bahamas to Jamaica, England to Rome, Athens Greece to Ephesus, France to Spain and Switzerland…. I have always been thankful to return home to America. We have met wonderful people. There have been countless wonders, magnificent architectural expressions and artistic monuments as well as majestic sceneries to behold from the hilltop Montserrat to Notre Dame Cathedral, St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City to the Blue Mosque and Hagias Sophia in Turkey. Yet I have never seen nor experienced a place where the freedom in which we are privy to here in America is experienced anywhere else in the world. It is because of this freedom and opportunity Barak Obama has become the 44th and 1st Afro American President. How ironic he and his family will be the first Black Family to ever take up resident in the nation’s capitol infamously known as “The White House.” “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
In the 1930’s America was a segregated society where everything was separate. There were even separate water fountains and restrooms labeled for “Whites only” and less hygienic accommodations for the “Colored”. Let’s not forget back seats on buses and back entrances to public facilities. Many Blacks decided to migrate to the North. Being born and raised in California has had its benefits since here, we have been somewhat shielded from the dire profundity of racism and discrimination that permeated the deep south. Not that discrimination did not go on here, it did, and has ……. Here we have just been a tad further removed from the antagonistic discrimination which was so outwardly and blatantly, readily displayed itself in the deep south. Despite the fact America is a country made up of immigrants from all over the world. Where slavery was practiced and embraced. Where many Whites felt that they were superior to Blacks and we were perceived as inferior. To many even to be dark skinned was considered a curse. To be beaten, severely punished, raped or lynched and treated less than human was once considered acceptable behavior. The right to learn how to read and write was also denied as well as deemed illegal. Dissension, factions, immorality and discord are works of the flesh. Here is an excerpt from the article; Blacks are better off than in 1999 than in 1960 “After the Civil War, many amendments were passed in order to better represent blacks in America. The 13th, 14th and 15th amendments all changed blacks’ lives drastically and positively. The 13th amendment ended slavery and the 14th declared blacks as citizens. The fifteenth amendment stated that anyone can vote, regardless of color or race. However, the South devised poll taxes and literacy tests in a successful attempt at preventing blacks from voting. But in 1964, after a sufficient number of states ratified an amendment proposed by Congress, the tables turned for blacks. The 24th amendment banned poll taxes. The voting act of 1965 banned the use of literacy tests related to voting. Voting gave blacks a say in government and helped raise the moral of blacks in America.” “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
I can personally recall from time to time watching on television the injustices broadcasted on the news and the many interruptions for special bulletin news reports as a child. I can remember the many tales of my parents and the many experiences they encountered growing up in the early 1900’s in Arkansas. I was a mere toddler when segregation in the schools legally ended in 1955, which resulted in the Montgomery Bus Boycotts. The Supreme Court eventually ruled that Alabama segregation laws were unconstitutional. It is during this time that Rosa parks decided not to give up her seat to a white person simply because she was so very tired. This protest resulted in Dr. Martin Luther King a Baptist Minister at the time, being ushered to the front lines as a prominent Social Leader for the Black Community. Discrimination in theaters, hotels, hospitals and public places continued on until in 1964 Congress passed a Civil Rights Act. Dr. King lead many “Peaceful Freedom Protest Marches” protesting the many injustices upon Blacks. Dr. King believed, practiced and exemplified the Fruit of God’s Spirit which is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness and Self-Control. “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
I can recall when I was in Jr. High School during the sixties, as president of my homeroom. I clearly remember having to lead the class in the “Pledge of Allegiance.” But, halfway through one particular morning, all of a sudden it dawned on me. It had become quite clear to me that it really was not “Liberty and Justice for all”. So I decided that I would silently and peacefully protest not to complete the pledge. Of course it did not go over big at all with my homeroom teacher. But it was a real awakening in my soul… One cannot help but to appreciate the far reaching magnitude of what has taken place here on November 4th 2008! It will be forever recorded in America’s History. American has resumed its intended purpose and the opportunity to provide “Liberty and Justice for All” has been forthrightly reinstated! There is no doubt that the successful election of Barak Obama was a concerted effort that included a network of people of All Colors and creeds working together. This is truly a victory for ALL people of America! He comes from a multi faceted colorful ancestral heritage that represents a multitude of people. “With God ALL things are possible.” His Word tells us “that God is not a respecter of persons…” It may be hard for the finite mind to fathom that God who is Omniscient, knew way back then, even from the very beginning of time what would be taking place today! “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
We as Christians and as a Country have so much to be thankful for. All of God’s Word is true! Today we are living in perilous times. But despite the nations many financial hardships, declining economy, overwhelming number of businesses closing, devaluation of property, wars and rumors of wars, terrorists attacks, natural disasters, famines and earthquakes in divers places throughout the world, we can have peace knowing God is still in absolute control! Absolutely nothing gets by Him! Romans 12 tells us, “To not be conformed to the pattern of this world! But to 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…” As a professed Christian and believer it is very important to know God’s Word! To have an intimate personal relationship with HIM! The book of Romans goes on to tell us that in leadership the ability to govern diligently is a gift from God. Ultimately every authority, government and principality is under God’s authority and the headship of Jesus Christ. Colossians tells us that ” For by Him All things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible, and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by Him and consist for Him…” Whether you believe it or not only God is Sovereign! The Bible tells us how God, delivered the children of Israel out of Egyptian bondage. There are also endless true life stories in His Word of how He delivered His people from unjust rulers and countless situations that seemed impossible. “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought us.”
It is through a committed personal relationship with His Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ one can truly experience necessary continued spiritual growth and development as well as His peace and freedom that surpasses the understanding of man. There are invaluable benefits knowing who you are in Christ. Today it is through God’s grace and mercy America has been delivered! It was quite evident as we all watched the hysterical excitement permeate the enormous crowds as Barak Obama was elected president. God has truly delivered America from the clutches of despair and hopelessness and ushered in a glistening glimmer of “Hope”! “Nothing is impossible with God.” In His Word He also tells us although we may be accused living among unbelievers (pagans) we must still live to please Him! God’s promise to “never leave nor forsake us” is quite true! Truly we can say “GOD BLESS AMERICA!” As Christians we must individually, collectively and corporately pray and ask God’s protection, grace, wisdom and direction to rest upon President Barak Obama , his family and his staff. As he takes upon his shoulders the awesome tasks of restoring America’s dignity, credibility and prominent visual universal position. He will encounter many land mines and obstacles. America has a tall order to fill. The 24th Psalms says, “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world and all who live within it…” As a country and a nation that proclaims to be “one nation under God with Liberty and Justice for ALL.” The Word says, ” With God All things are possible.” Praise be to God from whom ALL blessings flow. Praise Him ALL creatures here below… It is truly amazing ! Again “GOD BLESS AMERICA”
One can truly say “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought us.” He has delivered us from unjust rulers, slavery, oppression, and given us freedom. In America, Egypt, Libya, Iran, Yemen, and all over the world, Let Freedom Ring.
Yes, Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us. He has brought us from a mighty long ways.“But we still have a long ways to go.” Listen/Purchase “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us” from the CD “Somebody Somewhere Was Praying For Me” by Brenda Lowe.
There is so much turbulence and conflict about us in the world today and within our country as well. Few will readily admit it, but it is a great deal of conflict going on also within the Church. This is, resulting in further conflict surrounding many families, marriages, friendships, on the job and in the schools. Quite often many of the unhealthy dynamics simply go unaddressed. Guilt, blame and shame take the forefront. Therefore anxiety levels, anger, resentment, depression, addictions, numerous stress related illnesses and health concerns are on the rise.
Due to the increasing awareness of the unfortunate declining economic status within our nation, there has been an overwhelming trickle down global effect on the world at large. There have been strings of layoffs, numerous companies closing, rapidly falling stock prices, decreasing values of 401K’s and other retirement accounts, we have been in a “recession” that we are still trying to recover from. It has been said that the United States has been consuming more than it produces for years. It has been quoted that just in the last eight years we lost $40 Trillion of our economy. The Washington Times quotes; “Paul Volcker, former chairman of the Federal Reserve and an economic adviser to President Obama, told a congressional committee that massive trade-related imbalances in the U.S. economy were the source of the financial crisis that produced the ugly recession.”
There is a growing concern as to the overall quality of life worldwide. Ongoing wars, continued escalating terrorists threats and due to global warming, the threat of more hurricanes, famines, floods, earthquakes and more natural disasters are all becoming of a greater concern as well. Broken families, divorces, suicides and escalating crime, all these and more factor into the overall quality of life as we know it. But should we really be surprised? In spite of it all there is still hope! If you are a believer then you must know that the Truth of God’s Word is being affirmed. Jesus has said, “You will hear, of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed, such things must happen, but the end is still to come, Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of many will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.” It is so very important to know God’s Word!
God’s timeless Word is so wonderfully amazing! Our attitude and perception have a lot to do with how we cope in any given situation. Conflict is inevitable. The Lord really is, can, and will be a refuge in times like these. Although a growing concern is warranted. God is able! “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear.” God’s people should always look to Him, especially when it seems as though the world is coming apart. On many occasions even within His Church the ways of the world have been embraced. But this is nothing new. Things may even get worst before it gets better. There is much spiritual warfare about us. But don’t blame God. Our security and significance must be in Him alone! His weapons are not carnal. One must seek to not compromise His Word. During adversity with balanced faith, families grow stronger, healthy relationships are fortified when the armor of the Lord is embraced. His Word prevails! Just know God will never lead you to do anything contrary to His Word. Man from the very beginning has quite often chosen to disregard what God has said. What we are experiencing is a direct result of those consequences. But remember, “The earth is the Lords and the fullness thereof, the world and them that dwell therein…”
Begin to consider looking to God and His principles for the solution to whatever you may be going through. In Him there is always hope! When conflict arises it is so very important to consult Him. More often than not when conflict arises He is the last resort. God has given us various illustrated methods to utilize healthy confrontation. But too often pride is at the forefront and carnal methods are employed instead. I would like to share with you a tidbit from the narrative on Joseph. It is one of the many exhilarating examples you can find in the Bible: There was a “famine” or should I say “recession” in the land? Joseph was favored by the Lord and was also his father’s Israel’s favorite . Joseph had many brothers. “Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made a richly ornamented robe for him. When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.”Joseph had several dreams. In one of his dreams, “the sun moon and stars bowed down to him.” His brothers were jealous of Joseph so they plotted together and sold Joseph into slavery, they called him a “dreamer.” They then slaughtered a goat, put the blood on Joseph’s robe, went home, lied and told their father that Joseph had been killed…
While a slave Joseph’s master Potiphar favored him and put him in charge of all that he possessed. His master’s wife tried to seduce him, but Joseph would have no part of it. She in turn lied on him and he was unjustly put into prison. While in prison the Lord’s favor was with Joseph. The warden was so impressed by Joseph, even here he put him in charge of everything! Joseph was able to interpret dreams. While in prison, many things happened to Joseph… One day, Pharaoh the King of Egypt was troubled and had a dream. Joseph was called; he was able to interpret his dream. The Pharaoh realized that Joseph was wise and discerning. “So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I hereby put you in charge of the whole land of Egypt…”
A great famine came upon the land. Joseph had planned wisely and because of it there was ample food in Egypt. Joseph’s brothers lived in Canaan were there was no food. They were sent to Egypt by their father to buy grain. Guess what? When they arrived in Egypt they had to bow down to Joseph, he was now the governor. God knew way in advance what was going to take place. In spite of all Joseph’s mistreatment and adversity the Lord was still with Joseph… He finally revealed himself to his brothers. “I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry for selling me here, because it was to save the lives that God sent me ahead of you. For two years now there has been a famine in the land, and for the next five years there will not be plowing and reaping. But GOD sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance…” (For the details of this amazing narrative, read Genesis 39-47) Look at God!
This is why it is important to “Be Still and know that He is God.” Knowing God and His Word helps us to discern and recognize when something is not of Him. This is why we must daily ask for the infilling presence of His Holy Spirit. God does not have to manipulate, operate undercover, nor utilize false witnesses. God is aware of everything. He is Omniscient! It is very important to know the Lord’s Word for yourself and develop an ongoing, growing, trusting, personal intimate relationship with Him. It is important to learn to, “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 paths straight.”
We must learn to invite God into all areas of our lives. God has a way in which to resolve conflict and confront issues that is quite different from that of the world. Remember He is a SPIRIT of TRUTH! His Word is full of seemingly impossible situations that resulted in a favorable outcome. Many who claim to be Christians continue to embrace very carnal ways to remediate behavior and seek resolutions. Many subscribe to a dual lifestyle one way at home and another way is present before the Church Community. It is important to keep in mind that God is aware of everything. He knows us from the inside out. Many really do not know nor believe that His Holy Spirit really does have Transformation power! He can and is more than able to bring about a true Metamorphosis in your life. Praise God!
Jesus Christ came so that we might live differently. Throughout His Word you will find all sorts of situations that are profoundly unfathomable. Yet He saw and will see His people through. There is a wealth of wisdom found in the Word of God that is priceless. The Pharisees was the established religious order that sought to discredit Jesus. They were intimidated by Him because He did not adhere to their legalistic practices. Spiritually they were blind. They too wanted to continue to resolve things their own way. Jesus was a living example as to what one can expect when you truly dedicate your life to Him! God knew way back then what would be going on now. “Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding, for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold. She is more precious than rubies: nothing you can desire can compare with her…”
Some things just will not be understood on this side of heaven. From the very beginning God had a plan for our lives. God is so gracious, loving, kind and patient. Few know what it truly means to love. God is love. Can you really love without knowing Him? He sent His only begotten Son so we could be redeemed from the power of sin. We have been given an Eternal Comforter an Internal Teacher! Even in the midst of all the turmoil that is about us His plan is still the same. If you are burdened down by the pressures and stresses of life, I have some “Good News” for you. “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). God may not remove every burden, every difficult person or situation in your life, but you can find comfort in His Word. It is important to know His Promises! I assure you, He will and does keep all His Promises! Even in your difficult days, His Word will be “A lamp unto your feet and a Light unto your path. I have sworn and I will keep your righteous judgments…” To GOD be the GLORY!