Don’t Give In, Don’t Give Up

Woman Relaxing On Mountain Top

“And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” – Genesis 2:16-17

God warned Adam and Eve specifically about not eating from the tree of knowledge because he knew nothing good would come from it. Just like any good father would warn their child to not play in the street. Because he is concerned for his child’s safety. But, most of the time we take it upon ourselves and do not heed to the warnings. In Genesis 3: 1-7 it says:

“Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God has made. And he said unto the woman, yea, hath God said, ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, we may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, he shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest he die. And the serpent said unto the woman, ye shall not surely die. For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave unto her husband with her; and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened, and they were naked: and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.”

Adam and Eve disobeyed God by allowing the devil to whisper his lies instead of having enough faith to do what God told them to do. Just as a child running into the street after his father told him not to, discipline has to take action. Not because God doesn’t care, but because he cares tremendously. If he wouldn’t care, he wouldn’t correct us.

The day Adam and Eve ate of the fruit of the tree of knowledge is the day the devil introduced us to sin. Because, after all, Satan was the first to sin. In 1 John 3:8 it says:

“He that committeth sin is of the devil for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.”

Whether you like it or not, we are apart of a battle between good and evil, light and darkness, etc. There comes a point where you have to choose a side. Being a Christian by no means is easy. It is actually very difficult at times because, the devil fights you every single step of the way. It may be easier to live in sin, but it is by no means worth it!

Before a person gets saved, we are blind to many things. We are blind to the spirtual warfare going on all around us because Satan uses many things to distract us and to keep us living in sin. Whenever we sin we are hurting God, we are breaking His heart. It was not God’s intentions or His will for us to sin and end up in hell for eternity. God loves us so much and wants us to all do right so we can join Him in Heaven one day. Even though we break His heart when we act out in sin, He still loves us enough to give us a chance. In John 3:16 it says:

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

The devil on the other hand could care less about any and every one of us. He only cares about himself. In Romans 6:23 it says:

“For the wages of sin (is) death; but the gift of God (is) eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Nothing good comes from sin, nothing at all! The Devil doesn’t care for us and only wants to use us to hurt God. So, why do we allow him to continue to control us? Why do we continue to hurt God by sinning? Although, a spirtual battle is a difficult situation to be in, God has given us as Christians, the power and authority to rebuke Satan and the attacks of the enemies. I know sometimes we tend to forget that we have that power but, in all honesty, it’s something we should never forget!

That power we have inside us is the power of and from the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is VERY powerful! We OWE it to GOD to put all of our trust in Him one hundred percent because God will never steer us wrong or lead us to damnation.

We can choose to be that mouse and get caught in the trap of sin or we can choose to carry our cross and keep our eyes on Jesus. The Lord is good to us in every way in that for any and every sin, he provided a way for us to get away from the temptations. In Corinthians 10:13 it says:

“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man. But, God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”

God sent his only son to suffer and die on the cross for us. He paid for our sins with His precious blood. If we cannot press through the spirtual battle, if we cannot turn away from our sin, then that simply makes us selfish and we will have to answer for it one day! We may stumble, we may trip and fall. But, as long as we don’t give up and we keep trying we will end up getting it right! So, keep your eyes on Jesus and dont let the weight of sin crush your walk with God.

“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.” – Hebrews‬ ‭12:1-3‬ ‭

Submitted by @ Laken Richard

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This Little Light Of Mine

light up

We have all heard or have sung this old hymn in church at some point. I have always loved this song and it is one of the few songs that has stuck with me through all of these years. For those who are not familiar with this song or may just need a refresher, here are the lyrics:

“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
Let it shine, shine, shine. Let it shine!

Everywhere I go, I’m gonna let it shine.
Everywhere I go, I’m gonna let it shine.
Everywhere I go, I’m gonna let it shine.
Let it shine, shine, shine. Let it shine!

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
Let it shine, shine, shine. Let it shine!

All up in my house, I’m gonna let it shine.
All up in my house, I’m gonna let it shine.
All up in my house, I’m gonna let it shine.
Let it shine, shine, shine. Let it shine!

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
Let it shine, shine, shine. Let it shine!”

Although, it is such a simple and short song, it actually has a strong and powerful message within it that most overlook; for God created light. In Genisis 1:4 it says:

“And God saw the light, that (It was) good and God divided the light from the darkness.”

As Christians, we have to separate ourselves from the darkness (darkness being sin) and be the light. We have to allow the light within us to outshine the darkness of sin that is sadly taking over the world around us. God gave us not only the precious gift of life, but he gave us His Holy Spirit to dwells with in us in this life. In John 1:5 it says:

“This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.”

God made us in his image and with that being said, we are all meant to play an important role and carry out God’s works and acts of kindness. Not with selfish intentions of gaining wealth, popularity, or any other worldly gifts, but simply for the reason of wanting to be as Christ. Know that if those self centered thoughts begin to creep in, it’s the darkness trying to extinguish your fire.

The devil will try to stop you from carrying out what God has called you to do. He will try to discourage you, throw obstacles in your path, and he will even use some people in your life to come against you. Anything and everything the devil can do, he will! But the good news is that you have the gift of the Holy Spirit (the light) to illuminate through the darkness! Imagine yourself being in a pitch black room and you have a flash light. As soon as you turn the flash light on a beam of light comes out and pierces through the once pitch black room. Spend a part of your day everyday with God and keep the battery charged! That way, you can go into the world and spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ no matter how dark it is out there because you bring the light without. In Matthew 5:14-16 Jesus said:

“Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

Basically, in these Bible verses, Jesus is saying that our Heavenly Father lives within us, and when we go out and spread His word, live like Christ, and allow our light to shine, no darkness can prevail because our Lord Jesus is the most powerful, He is almighty.

Let’s look deeper at the verse of the song that states : “All up in my house, I’m gonna let it shine.” Yes, your house is a very important place to serve the Lord! Because, if you are not living righteously behind the closed doors of your home like you are at Church.. something in your life needs to be reevaluated. If you are living righteously, there is no need to contain your light in just your home, go out and spread it! Someone out there is lacking knowledge and truth! Share with them the wonderful and powerful things that the Lord has done for you and let them see what the power (grace) of God can do through you. Be the light!

Submitted by @ Laken Richard

 

SAVED FOR A PURPOSE

Black-Man-Praying-1“And he said, A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.” – Luke‬ ‭15:11-24

The parable of the prodigal son really gives us such a clear view on Salvation and what it’s all about. God (The Good Father) wants to bless His children: “it’s His pleasure to give good gifts to His children“. He freely gives us of His inheritance. The younger son covets that inheritance then leaves the Father. (Some people love the blessings of God more than God Himself.) Him leaving the Father represents someone who once was saved but is no longer by choice. Covetousness, greed, and idolatry had taken his heart from the Father and placed it on the inheritance.Once given, the son then leaves home and parties it up until it’s all gone and then all his “friends” leave him and the hard times kick in. He finds himself staring at pig slop and desiring to fill his belly with it. BUT THEN… HE COMES TO HIS SENSES…

He begins to think of his home that he had left and remembers how good he really had it there. That even his Father’s servants were better off having food enough to spare. There was an abundance at ABBA’s house! He humbled himself and decided to be one of his Father’s hired servants and sets off back home.

On the long road home I wonder just how many times he thought of how much he had hurt his Daddy by leaving Him. I’m sure the guilt began to sink in. The recognition of that guilt is the very thing needed to cause us to humble ourselves in the sight of the Lord that will in-turn cause Him to lift us up. A recognition of guilt with humility and returning to the Father is the first step in Salvation: for until we see our own wretchedness we can never KNOW the GREAT GOODNESS OF OUR FATHER; there is safety with the Father.

I wonder just how many times he must have thought of what he would say to his Daddy. I’m sure that in every step, his heart became heavier and heavier with the grief that he caused his Father. Just how many times he must have recited his repentant plea, but before he could speak a word the Father saw His son returning home to Him, [HE RAN TO HIM took him in His arms held his head to His chest and said “My son’s come home again!” Lifted his face wiped the tears from his eyes, with forgiveness in His voice He said, `son do you know I still love you?!’“] ( – taken from the lyrics of the song “When God Ran”)

The Father calls for the servants to bring a robe (righteousness) and He places it on His son along with a ring (authority) for His son’s finger. He also places shoes on His son’s feet (ministry), saying: “bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.” As soon as one soul returns to the Father, all of Heaven REJOICES!

As a great man of God once said: “Jesus didn’t come to make bad men good, He came to make dead men LIVE!” ~Lenard Ravenhill

The Grace of God is the POWER to make men who are dead in their sins and trespasses alive unto God by the same Spirit THAT RAISED CHRIST FROM THE DEAD! This is truly Salvation: to return to the Father with a recognition that the world and all it offers is nothing more than “pig slop” in comparison to our Father and His Holy Habitation!! That our own misery is because we have left the Father, and our wretched acts of rebellion against our Father God have caused us great grief and grieved our Father as well. That the payment for that sin we committed is death, and that Jesus Christ (GOD’S ONLY BEGOTTEN SON), by the love He had for the Father became obedient unto death to be the eternal sacrifice for our sins and that through believing in Him and all He says we are saved: by surrendering ourselves back to the OBEDIENCE OF OUR FATHER. Willing to become servants, we become SONS and DAUGHTERS of the MOST HIGH GOD! This is TRUE REPENTANCE!!!

This however, sadly is not preached by most modern churches today: instead, they want salvation without repentance! They want forgiveness of God without having to forgive those who hurt them! They want to be accepted by God without neglecting the world and all it offers! They want the Blood of Christ and His sacrifice, without any willingness to suffer themselves! They want to be holy without allowing their sins to be washed away by the blood of Christ! They coddle their sins like a pet instead of nailing them to the cross to die! They prefer the lustful pleasures of this world over the affliction that leads to the eternal weight of glory! Thus the churches suffer from worldliness and are leading the masses to HELL unaware of the horrors of sin and the soon coming judgement at hand, for no matter who you are, living a life of WILLFUL SIN will only anger a Holy and Just God who gave us His only SON to TAKE AWAY OUR SINS! It’s time we begin to see ourselves in the light of our HOLY GOD AND ALLOW HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS TO BE PLACED UPON US THAT BY HIS AUTHORITY WE TOO CAN DO HIS WILL AND WALK IN HIS COMMANDS!

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:8-10‬ KJV

I’m NOT saved because I’m good, but I’m good because I’m saved! It’s time we allow Grace, which is the Power of God, to save us FROM OUR SINS by FAITH in HIM! If we truly believe, then we will LIVE IT! It’s HIS GIFT TO US, so receive it! Nothing to boast about of ourselves, but we glory in the CROSS OF CHRIST! And Now we are HIS! WE ARE HIS WORKMANSHIP, SAVED BY HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, GIVEN HIS GOOD WORKS, THAT WE SHOULD WALK IN THEM!

How closely does your life reflect Jesus Christ’s? If your walking in your own righteousness you will fail every time, but when you rely TOTALLY UPON HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS you will produce the fruit of HIS HOLY SPIRIT becoming the LIVING SACRIFICE HE INTENDED YOU TO BE! You see another GIFT HE HAS GIVEN US:

“For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;” – Philippians‬ ‭1:29‬

“Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” – 2 Timothy‬ ‭3:12-17

“Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless. And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction. Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.” – 2 Peter‬ ‭3:13-18‬

“But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly; And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished: But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities. Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord. But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children: Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet. These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.” – 2 Peter‬ ‭2:1-22

(Read: 2Peter 3 as well)

Knowing that in the last days (today) there will be seducers, false prophets, and false teachers, it would be wise to pick up the Holy Bible (KJV) and begin to ask the HOLY SPIRIT for understanding.

Remember the words of our Savior:

“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

It’s time for us Christians to start living for the eternity that Christ told us of, for if we believe there is a HELL and that MANY will go there, then what are we doing for Heaven’s sake! Let us LIVE THE GOSPEL, Interceded for the lost, and walk in the commands of our HEAVENLY FATHER building HIS KINGDOM not ours!

“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” – 2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:17-18‬

Submitted by @ Heather Wright

Pick Up Your Sword And Fight!

hqdefaultI am so thankful that the power of God’s Spirit living in us, His plans in our lives, and His purposes for those plans are not changed by our emotional reasoning. The power of God is not altered by emotion, because He doesn’t change. Even though our emotions sometimes resemble a roller coaster, God remains steady.

God’s power and His plans are very much alive, and are unaltered by our “feelings“. That’s comforting to me, as I can often “feel” doubt, worry, and fear. Shame on me for allowing these “feelings” in, when I do. However, when this does happens, the devil plays on such emotions, and he twists them in such a way that they might lead my thoughts that day. But, God is steady and His power is not altered by these feelings, or the devils lies, and I am reminded again that at one word of my Father, the devil has to run.

I’m not letting the devil lead. I’m kicking him out before he even starts today. We have to fight back, but remember that it is not a physical battle. So if you dropped your sword in battle when you were distracted by your emotions, pick it back up now. It’s not over.

“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places . Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” – Ephesians 6:11-13

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” – James 4:7

Submitted by @ Amelia Barr

Fear God, Not Man

14fd0bc4eb2c7bb38c785f9925aa5de9“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.” – 1 John 4:18

Fear is being tormented by the enemy. When we are living in fear we are not walking in perfect love. We are walking in fear and we are being defeated by the enemy.

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7

When we walk in fear, we are allowing the enemy to strip us of a sound mind. Fear will cause you to be afraid of everything around you. Fear is walking in torment of what man will do. A lot of our problems are that we fear what man can do to us, and not God.

“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” – Matthew 10:28

Stop trusting in man and start trusting God. Stop fearing man and start fearing God.

“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?” – Psalms 118:6

“It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.” – Psalms 118:8

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.” – Proverbs 9:10

We look around and we see the evilness of man getting worse and worse, but known this, that our God is bigger than them all. He is faithful and He is always there for us. We can trust Him no matter what comes our way.

“But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil.” – 2 Thessalonians 3:3

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.” – Psalms 23: 1-6

We do not have to walk in fear. God has given us the authority to overcome fear through Jesus. Stand up and use your authority, take back your sound mind, God has given us peace of mind over all fear.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” – James 4:7

“The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.” – Numbers 6:24-26

Submitted by @ Priscilla Bazer

Watch and Pray

20931167_1754424497918224_1024887147_oTwo simple words that carry such power. Why? Because the power is not in the words, or the action of them, but in God Who works with power to perform His will in the earth. Of all the LORD’s commands, I believe these to be the most difficult to obey, not because they are difficult to do, but because it is difficult to do that only and not want to do something more. When an expert says, “watch me and learn.” It’s always a good idea to pay close attention to what they do and how they do it. Much can be learned by watching a professional do a task. I feel just like this sitting at the feet of Christ. Completely in awe of Him, as He does what only HE can do! I know that I will never be able to attain to His perfection and abilities (at least not on my own), nevertheless I desire to learn as much as I possibly can from Him! So what does He tell us we can learn from Him?

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”‭‭ – Matthew‬ ‭11:28-30‬ ‬

So first He tells us to come to Him! Then He tells us to rest from all our own labors (because that profits us nothing), then He tells us to take His yoke upon us (because without Him we can do nothing), next He tells us to be meek and lowly like Him (for He came to serve not to be served), then He says we’ll find rest for our souls (no more needless striving for things we could never hope to achieve), just rest (be still and know that He is God) leave those impossibilities to our all powerful God and learn to trust Him with all our hearts and yoke up with Him in prayer How? Simply agree with Him! Agree that if He said it then it shall be! Stay connected to Christ Jesus and move when and where He does. Then and only then, can we become useful to Him! All we need to do is trust and follow walking in complete covenant agreement with all He wants to do, when, where, and how He wants to do it! The difficulty comes when we think we know what He is doing and want to help Him! (Great intentions but that only slows down or halts the process) The difficulty is in doing all this and nothing more! Of all the lessons of Scripture, this, at least in my opinion is the most difficult. Trust, pray, and obey! Nothing more and nothing less! This is truly being led by the Spirit and not walking in the flesh or emotions of our soul. I know in my own life, when I get excited about what God is doing I want to press that gas pedal and go a little faster, but if I feel fear, or am simply lacking in faith, I want to hit the breaks a little. Both of these responses are wrong, they throw you out of God’s timing and may cause you to have to repeat the course, instead we should cling to Jesus and trust Him in every moment of the journey. Only He knows best how to get you to the finish line right on time!

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil.”‭‭ – Proverbs‬ ‭3:5-7‬ ‬

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.”‭‭ – Romans‬ ‭8:2-8‬ ‬

“This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.”‭‭ – Galatians‬ ‭5:16-25‬ ‬

“And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”‭‭ – Romans‬ ‭8:10-15‬ ‬

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”‭‭ – 2 Timothy‬ ‭4:7-8‬ ‬

“See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.‭‭” – 1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:15-24‬ ‬

Submitted by @ Heather Wright

Wake up! It’s Time For Dead Men To Live!

miracles-of-jesus-raising-lazarus-from-dead-1104381-wallpaperI don’t want likes and shares. I want dead men to live!

What if today was the final page of you or I’s story, and then God closed the boo What does that mean for the “right now”? Right now with all of it’s empty distractions?

“You don’t have a soul, you are a soul. You have a body.” – C.S. Lewis said.

What’s gonna happen when everything that the devil used to distract us in this life is stripped away, and we have nothing standing between us and God? Nothing but all of the remembrance’s of the times we did not forsake everything to seek his face, to get alone with him. All of the moments when we could have put it down or turn it off, or bent the knee to pray, and we did not. We just did not.

If your reading this, your still here, and you can still put it down, turn it off, walk away. You can now seek his face, can now bury your head in your hands and beg for help. What do you have to lose, when all you really have of value is your soul, because that is who you are after all, a living soul, WITH a body. With eyes, with ears, with a voice, but nonetheless, a soul, and that’s why he pleads with you every day. “SEEK me while I may be found.” “Seek me WHILE I MAY be found.”

One day when your vehicle dies, the soul riding in it will go to one of two places. That’s all that matters in the entire world, no matter what language you speak or what color you are, what political party you stand with. Where your soul goes when you die is the only thing that matters right now.

Are you awake, and are you awake? Or are you sleep walking your life away, while the devil distracts you just one more day. All he needs is one more day to distract you on to hell. Please take off in a full sprint to God right now. YOU ARE A SOUL. And this body, it will die. Where will it abide for eternity? You have nothing to lose BUT your soul, and that’s everything. That’s YOU!

You still have time to seek refuge in Jesus. He is waiting for your call, but the devil wants to distract you onto hell. All he needs is one too many “today’s” and it’s all over. Please run to God. Please repent. Seek refuge while it can be sought.

The last sand WILL drop, and it will be over. Please don’t let the devil distract you even one more day. He’s building his kingdom too, and there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth without end. God WILL save you if you call upon His name and repent.

Please stop sleep walking. The devil doesn’t want you to be awake. God continues to send you alarms and you keep snoozing. Over and over and over again. WAKE UP. All the devil needs is one too many days of distracting you from coming to God and it will be all over.
When he shuts the door, it will not be opened again. Seek him today. Repent, Repent, Repent, and you shall be saved!

“Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord , and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. – Isaiah 55:6-7

“For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. [13] For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” – Romans 10:12-13

“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” – 2 Peter 3:9

“From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” – Matthew 4:17

“Again he said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the Lord . [5] Thus saith the Lord God unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live” – Ezekiel 37:4-5

“Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.” – Ephesians 5:14

Submitted by @ Amelia Barr

If You Trust Him, You Will Praise Him!

Praise stromPraise God in the storms. Most of the time we say that we trust God, but really we are just merely speaking words and our hearts really don’t trust Him. We say, “God give me faith”, but when the first little wind blows and messes up our plans we say, “No God, not this way!’, or “Why God why?”. Why is that? It is because we don’t actually trust Him.

We acknowledge trust with our mouths but deep down inside trust is really not there. We serve a big God but yet we think He cant help us physically or spiritually, or we just don’t believe that He wants to. In reality we are just leaning on our own understanding. We serve a God who spoke the world into existence, but yet He can’t provide for us? Whether it’s to help us spiritually, financially, health wise, or whatever may be the case. How many times do we put God in a box? How many times do we hinder our own blessings and victories? All because we truly don’t trust Him.

“Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” – Matthew 6:25-34

Praising Him in the storms will bring us to a deeper trust in Him because we are drawing closer to Him and if we truly trust Him at all, we will praise Him. Praising God gives Him what He truly deserves. whether He pays that bill or heals that sickness, its trusting that no matter what happens, He is worthy to be praised. Not just so that He will move on our behalf, but because we truly love Him and if we truly love Him we will trust Him and we will praise Him, no matter the outcome.

“Praise ye the Lord : for it is good to sing praises unto our God; for it is pleasant; and praise is comely.” – Psalms 147:1

I would say that no matter what we go through, praise Him because you love Him and you trust Him. Praise Him because He is worthy to be praised, and no matter what, He will take care of His children. It may not be the way we want it to be but we have to trust that His way is better. He loves us and He truly knows what is best.

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” – Proverbs 3:5-6

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord , He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.” – Psalms 91:1-4

Submitted by @ Priscilla Bazer

You Must Forgive To Be Forgiven

Black-Man-Praying-1“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;” – Matthew‬ ‭5:44‬ ‭

We as Christian’s need to be an example, but how can we be an example to people if when they hate us we hate them back? When they persecute us we persecute them back? Thats not the right example. Out of all the people in the world that hated Jesus and persecuted Him ,did Jesus hate them back? Did He persecute them back? Well here’s your answer for those questions:

“And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.” – Luke‬ ‭23:33-34‬ ‭

There is your answer after they beat Him and then crucified Him on the cross, instead of Him hating them, He said; “Father Forgive Them For They No Not What They Do“. If we are Christians, then we need to be like Christ. If you are a Christian, you have no excuse to not forgive somebody because we have to be like Christ!

“If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.” – John‬ ‭15:18-19‬ ‭

This is saying that the world will hate Jesus’s followers. You can’t expect the world to love you. The second you surrender your life to God you are no longer of this world, He adopted you into His family, and because He adopted you out of this world, this world is going to hate you. I mean, you can’t expect the world that is of the devil to love the people that are of God!! So being that the world is going to hate you (or already hates you), you have to learn to forgive because God did the same for you. So I will leave you with Jesus’s words in Mark 11:25-26 which says that you need to forgive people and if you don’t, then neither will God forgive you.

“And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.” – Mark‬ ‭11:25-26‬ ‭

Submitted by @ Marissa Bazer (age 12)

A Peculiar Glory

girl-dancing-rainAren’t we so quick to despise the “ways” God chooses to supply us with the patience and those things that we so earnestly pray for that we lack? We pray “Lord give me patience”. “Lord give me wisdom.” “Lord sanctify me. I hate this flesh! Lord Give me a balance of emotional strength but give me compassion. Enable me to do your service. Make me like you Lord.” All of the things we pray for, because they really are important, and we do lack them.

It is God Himself who urges us to pray for these things. But, with every stripping away process, new mountain top, or multiple aggravations brought on by the things of this world, they make us weary. They make us cringe at the thought of what tomorrow’s means of learning will bring, we tend to shrug our shoulders, forgetting the whole reason. The beauty of every flat tire. The beauty of every moment we realized we really are so helpless without him. Without all of these planned out, as we see them “disasters” how could He teach us to wait, to smile, to love, to believe, to climb?

Can’t we see He is answering our prayers? He’s giving us every thing we lacked, all of which we prayed for. He is so faithful to us. We don’t appreciate His methods because we are so sickeningly greedy. We want the patience and wisdom and courage right now. We want faith that moves mountains but we’re too lazy to climb more than one stride. We forget that the process/es are very much a part of those fruits that we pray for. They are literally supplying the necessary ingredients that make up the perfect dish. Every single one matters as much as the other. That’s kinda encouraging right?

I pray that whoever is reading this knows, truly knows, that this trial or trials your experiencing are not permanent, but the fruit God gives you from them will be exactly what He chose for you. To bring Him glory in them, to praise Him in them, and most importantly, to make you more like Him.

…And He “will” perfect his work.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher then the earth, so are my ways higher then your ways, and my thoughts then your thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8-9

“For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many rebound to the glory of God. For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” – 2 Corinthians 4:15-18

“And we know that all things work together for the good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28

Submitted by @ Amelia Barr