Beautiful Thoughts

Tags

, , , ,

Jeremiah 29:11

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you saith the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”

God is a Father who never has a negative thought about His children.  His thoughts about us are always good.  And He loves to think about His children because it causes Him to rejoice.  Remember, how it was when you first fell in love?  How you thought of that person all the time and most of your thoughts where good?  Maybe you thought of a touch, an embrace or a kiss. Remember how the thoughts awaken and heighten your emotions so that they flowed through your body?  Well, just think if our thoughts can affect our emotions, how much more God’s thoughts affect His emotions?  After all we’re made in His imagine and likeness.  God feels what He thinks just as we do.  But unlike us His thoughts don’t come from the outside of Him, His thoughts come from Himself where there’s only love because He is Love.

So if you want to know what’s on the Father’s mind about you simply look at Jesus because He is the expression of all the thoughts and plans that God the Father had on His mind for His children.  Jesus Christ the Son of God, the Word of God are the beautiful thoughts of God for all mankind.

One day, God thought my children will need a place where I can come and visit with them so He expressed His thought by speaking His Word and creating the world.  Then He thought it’s not good that they be alone so I’ll make them male and female and together they will fill the earth.  Then again He thought because I know they won’t always obey my commandments they will need someone to deliver them from the penalty of sin.  So He thought I’ll give them my Son, my only begotten Son, to redeem them from death, and ransom their souls from the power of darkness. God’s thoughts towards us are always thoughts of peace and not evil to give us good in our final outcome because He loves us.

Advertisements

Just Ask

Tags

, , , , ,

“And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” St. John 14: 13

When we ask our Father for anything we ask in Jesus name and we can expect to receive because the Father will not deny His Son.  He has given Him all things and we are in Him.  We are in His Son Christ Jesus.

Do you see yourself on the inside of Christ seated with Him in heavenly places?  Or do you see yourself looking up to Him from the outside?  When you see yourself on the outside of Christ you’re standing on your own works and on our own righteousness.  And therefore, you stand lacking because our righteousness can never measure up to the righteousness of God our righteousness is as filthy rages.  This is why God has made us to be righteous in Christ because He knows we could never be righteous on our own.  2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”

Therefore, you must see yourself as being in Him.  2 Cor. Says, “… in Him we live and move and have our being.”  When God looks at us He only sees His beloved Son.  He only sees the blood that He poured out at Calvary. So why not see as God sees, why not see yourself in the Son.  In Christ is where you receive all the faith, boldness and confidence you need to ask and receive whatever you want from God.  But on the outside of Christ there’s fear, doubt and unbelief.

Our being in Christ takes us completely out of the equation.  We no longer have to worry about whether or not we’ve been good enough to receive our request because we’ve been taken completely out of the equation.  It’s between the Father and the Son.  And the Father will not deny His Son anything.  He has given Him all things and you are in Him.  You are a joint-heir with Christ of all things.  Therefore, whatever you ask the Father in Jesus name expect to receive because the Father will not deny His Son.

I am an heir of God a joint-heir with the Lord Jesus Christ therefore; all that belongs to Christ belongs to me.

Christ My Rock

Tags

, , , ,

“He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved.” Psalms 62:6

Every day of our lives we are faced with pressure. Pressure to perform on our jobs, in our homes, in our relationships even the pressure that we put on ourselves to meet certain expectations. But regardless of how much pressure life presents, we don’t have to let the pressure cause us to be pressed.

When we are pressed we’re full of anxiety and when we’re full of anxiety we explode. We explode by making the wrong decisions. And decisions made out of anxiety are decisions made out of our heads instead of our hearts. When we make decisions based solely on head knowledge our decisions will be based on external factors and not faith. Faith is in our hearts not our heads because faith is Christ in us. God doesn’t want us to be pressed under the pressures of life instead He wants us to lean and press into Him the Rock of our salvation. When we do we see His glory.

Moses was human just like you and I and he to faced pressure. He had the responsibility of leading a rebellious and faithless people into that which God had promised them. However, Moses knew he couldn’t do it without God being with him. Exodus 33:15, “And he say unto Him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.” Moses was leaning on God to carry him through. When Moses asked God to show him His glory God told Moses to stand upon a rock and that He would hide him in the cleft of the rock. “And the Lord said, Behold, there is a place by me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock: And it shall come to pass, while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a cleft of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by” Exodus 33: 21-22. Moses would not only be standing on the rock but he would be completely surrounded by the rock and that’s when Moses would see the glory of God. And it was seeing the glory of God that enabled Moses to carry out what God had called him to do.

Are you feeling the pressures of life today? You don’t have to get pressed because God has placed you in the Rock Christ Jesus. You only need to stand upon the Rock. Take the word of God and lean hard and press upon the Rock of your salvation and like Moses you will see the glory of God.

It’s when you’re standing in and on the Rock Christ Jesus that you see the Glory of God.

Sweet Smelling Savor

Tags

, , , ,

Genesis 8:21, “And Noah builded an altar unto the Lord; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.” And the Lord smelled a sweet savor; and the Lord said in His heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more everything living, as I have done.”

There are fewer smells that can compete with a fresh pot of coffee brewing in the morning it stimulates my senses to the taste. I image myself with my fingers wrapped around my favorite mug as I bring the cup up to my lips. Aw! No other beverage can capture my attention like a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee. Imagine how Noah’s sacrifice stimulated God senses as it rose up to His nostrils. It moved Him to the point that He made a promise that he would never again curse the ground any more for man’s sake. It wasn’t so much the smell of the beast and the fowl as it was what they foreshadowed. When God smelled the aroma of Noah’s sacrifice He smelled the aroma of the life of His only begotten Son who would die for the sins of the world.

Oftentimes we think of giving our sacrifice to God but the truth is God wants us to give Him His sacrifice that He’s given to us. What do I mean? When you come before God don’t think about sacrificing yourself, think about the fact that Jesus became your sacrifice He laid on the altar or the cross and died our death once for all. There’s no need for us to do again what Christ has so perfectly done for us. All we have to do is offer Him up to God give God His sacrifice. When you do it becomes a sweet smelling aroma to God from the earth that releases blessings from heaven just as it did for Noah. It was after Noah offered up the sacrifice which typified Christ’s sacrifice that God blessed Noah and his sons. When we lift Jesus up we lay ourselves down. This is how we sacrifice ourselves by lifting Him up as our sacrifice. It is the only way that our sacrifice is holy, acceptable unto God because Christ is holy, acceptable unto God. Romans 12:1 says, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

The mercy of God is Christ because it is God not giving us what we deserve. It’s because of Christ that God doesn’t give us what we deserve. Therefore, it’s through Christ that we present our bodies as a living sacrifice. We lift Christ up as our sacrifice because He alone is holy, acceptable unto God. It is His life that causes our lives to smell like a field that the Lord has blessed (Gen. 27:27).

Turn Away From All That Distracts

Tags

, , , , ,

“Looking away [from all that will distract] to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith [giving the first incentive for our belief] and is also its Finisher [bring it to maturity and perfection].  He, for the joy [of obtaining the prize] that was before Him, endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2

If you’re going to accomplish anything in 2018 you’re going to have to turn away from all distractions.

Satan uses all manner of things to distract us from doing the will of God.  He uses our families, our finances, our bodies, our phones, our computers, our communities, our government, and so much more.  Here’s why, he knows that when we’re distracted by the problems in our environment we’re not focused on doing what God has called us to do.  You can’t do both.  You can’t focus on what God has called you to do and focus on the problem.  Paul compares it to a man called to war.  He says in II Timothy 2:4 “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier”.   We’ve been chosen to be soldiers in the army of God and we’re fighting the good fight of faith.  Jesus is the Leader and the Source of our faith and the only way for us to finish strong is for us to keep our eyes on Him.

Keeping our eyes on Jesus is easy when we realize that He is the answer to all of life’s problems. There is no problem that we can encounter that Jesus hasn’t already solved for us at Calvary.  He is our answer and our solution.  He is bigger than any problem we could ever face.  We need only to see Him as He is, bigger than any problem we could ever face.  You’re not going to be distracted by the problems in your environment when you’re looking at the solution.

Not only that, He alone can fill the thirst of our souls.  We don’t have to be distracted by our phones or social media because none of these things can satisfy like Jesus can. Take the women at the well in St John chapter 4.  She was longing for love and attention that’s why she had had five husbands. Even the man she was living with couldn’t satisfy her longing for love.  It was only when she met Jesus that her thirst was satisfied. You’re not going to be distracted by your thirst when you’re drinking what satisfies.

Whatever the enemy is using to cause you to look away from Jesus turn away from all that distracts and fix your eyes on Jesus the Author and Finisher, the Leader and Source of your faith.  He has set the example for us.  He didn’t get distracted by anything the enemy was using in His environment He finished His course because He kept his eyes on the prize, the joy of completing the will of His Father.  Let’s start the year strong and finish the year strong by turning away from all that would distract and keeping our eyes on Jesus.

When You Don’t Do What You Should Do

Tags

, , , ,

What do you do when you’re in the midst of trials and temptations and you don’t do what you know to do? You’ve heard all the sermons, you read the books and you brought the CDs and you may have preached the sermons. But now here you are in the middle of it all and the pressure is pressing in on you but instead of doing what you’ve been taught to do you freak out. Yes, you freak out!

Each of us at some point in our walk as believers can relate to what I’m saying. We don’t always do what we know to do. We don’t always apply the truths we’ve learned to the situations we’re facing. Sometimes we just lose it. Like Peter, sometimes we look at our storms instead of keeping our eyes on Jesus. Or like Moses we allow our emotions to get the best of us and we don’t follow instructions. Yes, sometimes we take our eyes off of Jesus and we don’t obey His instructions. But here’s the good news, its okay.   God knows we’re human and He knew that we would face these times in our life so He made provision for us through Christ. Even when we’re not faithful to God He is still faithful.   There is great joy and relief in knowing that God’s faithfulness is not contingent upon our faithfulness to him. He continues to be God in our lives even when we are too weak to fight the good fight of faith. He is Christ in us and He will never fail us. I know because I’ve been there many times. His grace is sufficient His strength is perfected in us when we’re weak (I Cor. 12:9).

The devil wants you to look at your inabilities and failures. And if he can’t get you to do that he’ll try to get you to look at your natural abilities and strengths. His goal is to get you to look at yourself instead of looking at Jesus.   Scripture says he is the accuser of the brethren and that he stands before us night and day replaying in our ear our inabilities and failures. Or he stands before us to try and get us to rely on our own strengths and abilities.  We should never look at what we do but at what Christ has done. I Corinthians 10:12 says, “Wherefore, let him that thinkest he standeth take heed lest he fall.” It’s not we do but what He’s done.

When we rely on Jesus during those times of temptation He makes a way to escape. “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. Wherefore, my dearly beloved flee from idolatry” (I Cor. 10:13-14). Anything you place before God is idolatry and that includes yourself. It’s not about how well we do or how strong we are, it’s about Jesus. It’s about us allowing Him to live out His life through us.

I Corinthians 12:9 says, “…My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” When I fall or when I don’t do what I know to do I don’t have to throw in the towel and quit because it’s in those times that I know my strength is weak and that I’m not standing in my own strength but I stand by the power of God.

God loves it when we cry out to Him for help. He wants us to throw up our hands in surrender to His will and to His power. James 4:6 says, “…God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.”

Remember, God’s faithfulness is not contingent upon your faithfulness to Him He is faithful that’s who He is. So even though you might not do what you know to do Jesus is perfect and He does all things well. He is with you leading and guiding you lifting you back up. He will never allow the devil to triumph over you. Micah 7:8 says, “Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy; when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me.” Even when we don’t do what we know to do we are still victorious in Christ.

Walk It Out!

Tags

, , , , ,

dreamstime_s_34546567If you want an easy way to get in shape walk.  Walking is an easy workout because it’s something we do every day.  Most of us have been doing it since we were two.

Walking is an excellent exercise for fat burning. While any exercise can burn calories, brisk walking for 45 minutes mobilizes the body to dip into fat reserves and burn stored fat. Another benefit to walking is that it requires very little for the mind.  So while you’re walking your mind is free to concentrate on other things.  So why not use the time while you’re getting physically fit to get spiritually fit.  Why not use the time to mediate on the word of God.  Memorization and meditation brings revelation.

The enemy is always on his job of trying to fill our minds with negative thoughts.  We therefore, must always be on our jobs of filling our minds with the word of God.  Positive thinking doesn’t come automatically after we’re saved.  No, we must work to have our minds renewed by mediating on the word of God.  Romans 12:2 says, “And be not conformed to this world; but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

When you change the way you think you change the way you live.  So it’s time to start living the good life by renewing your mind.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner, in the middle or advanced.  When you add the word to your walking routine it becomes a Power Walk.  Here is a quick and easy way to turn your normal walk into a power walk.

Take a verse of scripture and speak it out as it is written.  Now stop and mediate on the words of the scripture you just spoke, going over each word in your mind.  Then return to speaking the scripture out but this time make the verse personal to you.  For example, if you’re using John 3:16 you want to say that, God so loved me that He gave me His only begotten Son that as I believe on Him I shall not perish but I shall have everlasting life.  Lastly, stop and listen for the revelation that the Holy Spirit will give you concerning that scripture.

Well, there you have it!  While you building you’re physical body you’re building yourself up spiritually by renewing your mind in the word.

Testimony Time

MIC NIGHT

To the unveiling of His glory
This is your time to tell your story
Come on up to the mic
For this is your night
Hold the mic real tight because there will be a fight
God has been so awesome and even the devil knows that’s right
Believe what you hear
And don’t let it drop from your ear
Stand up and cheer
For our God is listening here
He loves to give us stories so we can make His praise glorious
Don’t let this night pass you by
For this is drawing nigh
So come on up to the mic
And be in God’s spotlight.

Poem by Willow

Change

Tags

, , , ,

Change is necessary for growth. We don’t always like change but if we want to grow we must embrace it.

I love the fall and winter seasons. I love the beautiful colors of the leaves, the pumpkin spice coffee and creamers that for some reason are only offered during the fall season and I love the fall fashions. Yes, most of all I love the fashions. I love sweaters, blazers, coats, hats and boots. You get so much more to dress up with in the fall and winter months. So I always look forward to change from summer to fall because I’m able to wear the fashions I love. It makes the change in seasons easy because it gives me something to look forward to.

Change is easy when you embrace it. When you’re going through a season of change and you find it difficult to cope more than likely it’s because you’re struggling with the change. Change is necessary for growth. Change is happening everyday in everything around us. Nothing stays the same. Regardless of how much we want things to remain the same they must change in order to grow.

I’ve been living in the same house for a very long time. To me this is home and home is not supposed to change. It’s been very difficult for me to adjust my mind to the fact that it’s time to move mainly because I don’t like moving. There is nothing about moving from one house to another that appeals to me.  I don’t like the packing or the unpacking.  But it’s something that must be done if I am to move.

It reminds me of Israel when they were in Babylonian captivity.  God told them that they would be there for seventy years.  They were to marry and have families because the captivity would be long.  But there would come a time when they would have to leave.  Leaving their land was heartbreaking but God gave them His promise that after 70 years they would return to their land (Jeremiah 29:10). God gave them something to look forward to during their time of change. And that’s the beauty of change it always gives way to something new. Even Jesus when faced with change looked forward to what was ahead of him. Hebrews 12:2 says, “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.”

So I want to encourage you, if you’re in the middle of change, take heart and don’t struggle, even if you’re the one who needs to make the change to get to where you want to be in life. Don’t struggle. Instead look ahead to what’s on the other side because change is a necessary part of growth and promotion.