Tuesday, October 22, 2019

October 22

I know God’s word is old, and seems out of date, but you would be surprised how relevant it is today. My stories may help get your attention, but if I could bring you biblical truths without such stories, and have them relatable to your own experiences, that’s what I would do. I am so in love with God’s word, I know that if you would fall in love with him, you would also hang on his every word as I do. Every time I read it, I find something new about him, his truths, or tidbits of information to help me live my best life. My mission is to teach those of you who are saved to live free from the weight of the baggage placed upon your shoulders by the world. Not only did Jesus save us from eternity in hell, but also to make our lives better while living in the world. I’m going to tell you what I was told years ago by the Holy Spirit; follow the footsteps of Jesus through the New Testament, there is freedom in his teachings. Even if you read nothing but the words written in red, you will be blessed, and find direction to becoming free.

"For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery."  Galatians 5:1

Monday, October 21, 2019

October 21

Some may wonder why I would sell my house on a lake and then buy in a townhouse neighborhood. The truth is, I like the looks of the perfectly groomed landscaping, each building being maintained the same, and never having to worry whether my neighbor is going to use an old toilet as a planter; and yes, I saw that happen. The lawns are all mowed on the same day, and someone else takes care of the landscape pest control, and makes sure the sprinklers are always up and running. Now, what’s going on inside the house is a different story; my neighbors may be living in filth, but no one knows because they are not allowed to let it overflow to the outside. I would say that it’s much like my faith in Jesus; his followers are all cleaned up, and perfectly groomed, because their sin is hidden in him. However, some are still living in their filth, and haven’t trusted him to clean up their past. If that’s you, stop beating yourself up; you’re forgiven. You can be clean on the inside too, but it’s up to you to surrender it to Jesus. 

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

Sunday, October 20, 2019

October 20

I was looking back on pictures of Rudy, my little Bewier Terrior, trying to figure out how old he is. Today is his birthday, and he’s four! It seems like we’ve had him much longer. I wasted so much time looking for the year that it pushed me to posting very late. I went on a wild goose chase just trying to track it down. Sometimes we become distracted and lose our sense of time, and it slips away. There are important things that you need to tend to, and the enemy will do anything he can to move you in a direction away from the Lord’s will. Pay close attention to the things that consume your time. If you are spending an excessive amount of time on worry, or fear, you do well to turn those things into prayer. It will never be a waste of time to talk to God about the things that are the cause for your concern. God doesn’t want us to get bogged down in strife, it’s not helpful to you or to Him. Pull yourself together, and do what seems best in the eyes of the Lord. We are here to please Him, and when we become self-consumed, we aren’t doing Him any good.

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. Matthew 6:33-34

Saturday, October 19, 2019

October 19

Just like the prophets of old, there are those who have been sent to point out the sins of the day, and encourage the sinners to repent. You will recognize them as unrelenting, and judgmental, but the truth about them is what’s in their heart, and the passion they have for righteousness. Isaiah was one of those sent to try and turn the people back to God. Don’t get mad at those pointing out the truth, or calling out your sin, you may be in the presence of one of God’s prophets. If you continue in a lifestyle forbidden by God, and you claim to be one of his own, you will be called out! You cannot live in sin on Friday and Saturday, and expect to be in the good graces of God on Sunday. When I see this type of behavior, I question whether a person is truly saved? Someone who has repented of their sin, and now follows Jesus, tries to avoid sin or the appearance of sin, at all costs. If the Holy Spirit lives in you, he will make you aware of your wrongdoing, and the pressure felt to live up to his standards will weigh heavy upon you. So, take note when you’re about to do “a thing,” and see if there’s a twinge in your heart reminding you of whom you belong; then don’t do it! You will be known by your fruit. Don’t produce sour, or rotten fruit!

What more was there to do for my vineyard, that I have not done in it? When I looked for it to yield grapes, why did it yield wild grapes? And now I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard. I will remove its hedge, and it shall be devoured; I will break down its wall, and it shall be trampled down. Isaiah 5:4-5

Friday, October 18, 2019

October 18

We sit under the rule of a great and glorious Savior who once walked the earth, then returned to his throne in heaven. Isaiah reveals the beauty of his presence when God allowed him to see a vision of Jesus sitting in the throne room with his robe filling the temple. How wonderful it must have been to be given such an image of him. He then put a hot coal to his lips to cleanse him of his sin, and then commissioned him to tell the world what God wanted him to share. Though our conversion may not resemble that of Isaiah’s, it is similar in that our hearts are pierced when he reveals himself to us, causing us to become undone, so we feel the weight of our sin. It is like Jesus touched our mouth with the hot coal, and made us clean, only our cleansing is seen in the image of his blood washing us of our filth. Don’t be afraid to do what God tells you to do. Though you may feel that your role is not as important as Isaiah’s, I can guarantee you that God’s love for you is not any less. You have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus and are commissioned to tell others about him. Go and tell the world how good he has been to you, so they might have a share in eternity.

And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.” And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” Isaiah 6:7-8

Thursday, October 17, 2019

October 17

I looked at the clock and thought it was 6:15 am, so I got up. After setting my mind on being up, I looked at it again and it was only 5:15 am! It was too late to change my mind, I was already awake. Wake up sleepy heads, it’s now time to live your life. Time keeps on ticking away, and I wonder if I’ve spent it wisely. After reaching the age of 55, I realized how much time I’ve wasted on unimportant things. Cultivating relationships should be our number one priority, especially our relationship with our Savior. How do you cultivate a relationship with someone you can’t see?  The answer: the Holy Spirit. He left us with a connection to him that only those who’ve accepted him get. Through the Holy Spirit, our soul is restored, and he reproves us so we become holy. This process brings us closer to Jesus and makes us want to do what is right in his eyes. As we draw closer to him, we also draw closer to his children, thus relationships are formed, and treasured. Today, focus on what really matters, the bond of love and friendship; it’s the only treasure you can take into Heaven.

"“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."John 15:12

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

October 16

Much of what is spoken of God, by those trying to bring others into the sheepfold of Christ, is his love. Little is made known about his wrath, though the Bible speaks of it more than it does of his love. He has made himself known to everyone through his creation. You cannot look at the intricate details of the creatures of this earth and not see God’s hand. He deserves the utmost respect and genuine love. When he doesn’t get that love, and we reject him, he pours out his wrath. He loves his children, and because we love Jesus, he will take vengeance on our adversaries. Those who continually deny him, spit in his face, and shake their fists at him, can expect his wrath. I’m not trying to make you afraid, you are not subject to his wrath, but you should have a healthy fear of what God can do, he is not to be toyed with. Honor, love, and respect him. If you need to encourage someone in this, take a look at some of the stories in the Old Testament. Those who rejected him were punished. Remember, one of God’s attributes is that he doesn’t change; he was wrathful then, and he is wrathful now.

“Rejoice with him, O heavens; bow down to him, all gods, for he avenges the blood of his children and takes vengeance on his adversaries. He repays those who hate him and cleanses his people's land.” Deuteronomy 32:43

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

October 15

Though it may seem like I’m an open book because of how much of my life I share, the truth is that I’m closed up tighter than a drum. I find it hard to give myself over to others, and reveal my deepest thoughts to someone other than the Lord. It may be because I’m more of a listener than a talker, and most people want to talk about themselves, and that’s okay, I probably wouldn’t say anything anyway, it’s just my nature. I’m thankful that God knows me deeply. He knows things about me that I don’t even know about myself. I may say that I want this or that, but he knows what I really want. He’s able to cut through to the heart, and knows my true desires. If you’re not getting the answer to your prayer, there may be something deeper going on within you that only God knows about. Relax and know that he has everything under control, and that he has your best interest at heart. He will give you the desires of your heart, but he may be the only one who knows what those desires are. Trust him.

Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether. Psalms 139:4

Monday, October 14, 2019

October 14

As a part of my ministry, I will sometimes keep people on my social media friends list that are obstinate, and against everything that I hold dear, by that I mean Jesus. There are scoffers and onlookers, there just to cause trouble with me and my friends. My heart breaks for these people, because I know that hell is hot, and I do not wish that on anyone. However, there comes a time when their presence becomes disturbing and I realize that they are the dogs, and pigs that Jesus speaks of in Matthew. As I try to highlight the precious gift of Jesus, and impart pearls of wisdom, they shake their fists at Jesus claiming unbelief. They linger in the background waiting to witness sin, so they can call me or my followers hypocrites, and say “I told you so.” These same people have no idea how merciful Jesus is, and even if we are caught in sin, we are forgiven. However, they are not, and every sin that they commit becomes kindling for their own everlasting fire. The Lord is not to be toyed with, nor are his children, and he will come down hard on anyone who scoffs at or ridicules his followers. I wouldn’t want to be the receiver of his fury. I say all of this so you know that it’s okay to walk away, and shake the dust off, when others make the decision to reject Jesus. Their blood is not on your hands.

"“Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you." Matthew 7:6

Sunday, October 13, 2019

October 13

Do you ever wonder why someone was blessed with good looks and an incredible personality, and you wish you were like them? Sometimes we get overly concerned when others are favorably treated rather than minding our own business, and worrying with ourselves. The same type of thing happened between the disciples. John was favored, and he called himself the one that Jesus loved. During supper, he leaned against Him, and made himself comfortable next to the Lord. John was the only one of the disciples that lived to a ripe old age and didn’t die a martyr's death. He still had to struggle, but the Lord kept him to finish up the scriptures and write the Revelation. Peter may have worried too much about Jesus’s relationship with John, but the Lord made it clear to him that he should only be concerned with himself. Stay in your lane! Don’t envy anyone for what they have. You don’t know the price they had to pay to get it. Keep your eyes on Jesus, and follow him, and let him be the one who deals with them.

"Jesus said to him, “If it is my will that he remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow me!”" John 21:22

Saturday, October 12, 2019

October 12

How do we know Jesus came back to life after his burial, and that he wasn’t stolen from the grave? Just because he wasn’t there, doesn’t mean he came back to life. First of all, we have the account of the disciples who saw him after his resurrection. However, if we were to believe the Jewish officials the way they tried to spin it, we would believe that Jesus’s followers had stolen his body away, as most Jews today still believe. What about the cloths lying in the tomb? If his body had been stolen, why would the cloths be in the tomb? Wouldn’t they keep him wrapped? They definitely wouldn’t fold up the face cloth, if it fell off while they removed him, it would be on the floor, certainly not folded. This was to be a sign to them that Jesus was resurrected, and it must have been significant because it ended up on the pages of scripture. Today we have little proof of his existence, only the account of those who knew him personally, the account of historians, and the account of those who were witnesses to seeing him resurrected. So why do we believe? Because God, being God, made a way! The manuscripts were preserved, and the Holy Spirit made it known to our spirit. Besides, how could a story so old still be circulating if it wasn’t being made manifest by God? You only need to believe the truth. 

Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus' head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself. John 20:6-7

Friday, October 11, 2019

October 11

It sickens me to think that the crimes I commit against God fall upon the back of our perfect Savior. He took my punishment! He was whipped, then nailed to a cross for my sake. Pilate tried to release him, over and over again, because he knew he was innocent, but because he was part of the greater plan, he had no authority, and succumbed to the will of the people. Why do I then turn around and doubt his love for me by not believing that he released me from my punishment by continuing to fret over the things of the past? Why would I turn around and sin again after receiving him? It’s because of unbelief. We block the voice of the Holy Spirit, and come into our own lack of knowledge and reject him all over again. Are we even worthy of his love? He thinks we are. He wouldn’t have bothered going to the cross if he didn’t think we were worthy. Jesus was pronounced innocent in court, but we are guilty and will never have to pay for our crimes because we are hidden in Jesus. God doesn’t see our crimes because they were transferred to Jesus. I will say it over and over again until you get it; stop living in your past! Move on! God has already let it go, and so should you.

Jesus’s innocence:
Pilate went out again and said to them, “See, I am bringing him out to you that you may know that I find no guilt in him.” John 19:4

Our guilt and continued sin:
They cried out, “Away with him, away with him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar.” So he delivered him over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus, John 19:15-16

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

October 9

Each word of scripture has a purpose and intentional meaning. To haphazardly speak it or write it out of context is a travesty, and causes you to become a liar; and one verse out of context can cause more harm than good. There are also portions of scripture that seem like meaningless filler, but believe me it isn’t. Take, for instance, the portion of scripture that tells us about Jesus being seized and presented to Annas before he was sent to Caiaphas the high priest; it had to happen that way because it has a symbolic meaning. Why was it important to take him to Annas first, because it didn’t seem to be a necessary step? Here’s why: Dr. John Lightfoot, a well know Bible scholar, believes Annas was the one who inspected all the sacrifices to make sure they had no blemishes, and then send them away bound and approve as ready for the altar. If true, it’s just more evidence that Jesus is who he says he is. It is also proof that every jot and tittle of scripture has importance. The Bible gives necessary information, even if it’s not for you. Some of it may only be important to the Jews, or someone else who will come to believe in Jesus because of the added information. God knows what he’s doing, it’s up to you to believe it.

So the band of soldiers and their captain and the officers of the Jews arrested Jesus and bound him. First they led him to Annas, for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. It was Caiaphas who had advised the Jews that it would be expedient that one man should die for the people. John 18:12

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

October 8

Have you ever started a project but failed to finish it? I usually finish what I start, but recently I noticed that I had about four projects going that I hadn’t finished. Remember me painting my two white rocking chairs brown? Well, I’ve only finished one of them! That’s now the last of the projects that need to be completed. The good news is, I will probably start another project, but maybe not until I get that chair painted. One project that I don’t plan on completing is working on myself. I’m a work in progress and will continue digging deep to route out anything that hinders my growth in Christ. Know this, you are a good work, worthy of the time and effort it takes to bring you to complete freedom. You are made in God’s image, hidden in Christ, you are perfected because of him, but you don’t believe it, that’s why you still have chains. Do whatever it takes to believe; your freedom is at stake. There’s nothing better than living a life loosed from the burdens of your past. If you continuously seek Jesus, he will reveal himself to you, and you will begin to believe the truth about yourself, and find your freedom.

"And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ."  Philippians 1:6

Monday, October 7, 2019

October 7

Disappointment is a daily occurrence; we’re not in heaven yet so it’s to be expected. Life is short and we should enjoy it as much as we can until Jesus calls us home, but sometimes we don’t. Solomon says that the day of death is better than the day of birth, and I would agree with that unless you’re already dead, by that I mean an unrepentant sinner. Until that day, we must continue to contend with the devil. Jesus prayed that we be kept from the evil one, I just wish that meant that the evil one had to leave us alone and not toy with us, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. There is some good news, we are just beyond his reach, and are protected from him taking us with him upon his demise. Though Jesus didn’t take us out of this world, we are allowed some pleasure in it; I live for those days and relish in them. Whatever disappointments, hurts, pain, and anxiety you’re dealing with in your life today, just know that better days are ahead of us, and things aren’t always bad. Remember, we have an eternity to live the blissful life when Jesus reclaims us and sets up his kingdom. Until then, hang on to what you have!

I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. John 17:15

Sunday, October 6, 2019

October 6

My husband and I are real estate agents and property owners. The main thrust of our business is property management, which makes us landlords. On occasion, we have tenants that refuse to pay their rent, but also won’t move out. When this happens, we have no choice but to file for an eviction with the court and schedule a date to be seen by the judge. We then go before the judge and try to convince them of our right to payment. Then our tenant, tries to convince them otherwise. After the judge hears both sides, a judgment is made. Did you know that this same process is set up in the spiritual world? When we sin, we have an adversary who brings a case against us in the courts of heaven. We are fortunate to have Jesus as our advocate, and he states our case before the Father; because of his sacrifice and his blood, the case is overturned when we repent. The Holy Spirit is the one who makes us aware by convincing us of our sin. Once we know we’ve sinned, we must repent so payment can be made on our behalf. You will sin, and you must repent, otherwise the enemy continues to have the right to torment you. Search your heart, and repent so that your peace returns to you.

And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. John 16:8-11

Saturday, October 5, 2019

October 5

There is a lot of hatred in the world today, mostly without cause. Lately, it is due to political differences, and the assumption that because you are a certain color, or nationality, you believe a specific way. The upheaval is mostly felt because people are living vicariously through the eyes of those reporting the “news.” The news is not truthful anymore, and you can’t count on it being reported fairly and unbiased, because each station bends it in their own political direction. Some stations are even biased against Christians, and cause hatred towards us because we love Jesus. There is some good news though, if you live and follow the words of Jesus to love others, and love God, you will find that all of that hatred is located right inside that box you’re peering into. Outside of that box, for the most part, you will find people genuinely caring about one another. Use wisdom, and search for the good that dwells within all of us, and don’t let the enemy win!

“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. John 15:18

Friday, October 4, 2019

October 4

There are some hibiscus planted near the edge of my yard. They’ve been there for a while and are fully grown. The problem with them is that because they are planted in the shade of the oak trees, they lack sun and seldom bloom. If those plants were on my property, I would probably take them out and plant something shade tolerant. Their lack of bloom makes them nothing more than a hedge plant. As a follower of Jesus, we are planted in the sun, and should bloom and produce fruit, so the truth about him spreads to the world. Did you know that Jesus is the vine and our gardener is the Father? He will prune us and cut off any branches that do not produce fruit. That’s a little scary! Don’t worry! If you love Jesus, you will produce fruit. Some till the garden, some plant the seeds, some water, and others harvest the fruit. All are an important part of the kingdom of God. Remember, just because you are not active in ministry right now, doesn’t mean you are not producing fruit. Maybe you’ve brought up your children to love Jesus, and they are producing fruit. I know that I could quit right now without fear of being pruned because of my children. I don’t want anyone to be frightened, I just want you to know the scripture.

"Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit."  John 15:2

Thursday, October 3, 2019

October 3

We all have things we like to collect, I have a passion for plants, art, and decorating. All of these things require some amount of work, and toil. I’m currently studying Ecclesiastes, and John. They may not seem to go together, but the words of Jesus are all wisdom! Solomon says that the gathering of stuff, and toiling over it is vain, and Jesus says to store your treasures in heaven. How? It’s about redefining yourself. You can’t take your possessions with you into heaven, unless your possessions are stored in your heart. Jesus doesn’t give to us the way the world gives, his gifts are matters of the heart, and the results are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Rather than toiling over possessions that you can’t take with you, start collecting spiritual gifts. If you want to collect something meaningful that doesn’t rot, toil over the souls of your friends and family, and maybe a few strangers, and gather them into heaven. Those are possessions worth attaining. 

"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid."  John 14:27

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

October 2

After posting a video yesterday, I began criticizing myself over some of the details, like, why was I looking off, why didn’t I do something with my hair, I need more makeup, and so on. Self talk can be such a downer. Then it hit me, I was criticizing one of God’s magnificent creations! Who am I to be critical of the Father? When you put yourself down, aren’t you also putting down his masterpiece? He created you! Who are you to judge the Almighty? We are created in his image, you wouldn’t tear God apart the way you tear yourself apart, would you? At some point in your life, the enemy whispered lies to you, and you believed him. Make it a part of your mission to praise God for his creation of YOU. You have a purpose, you belong to him, and he deserves credit for creating you. You have to take care of yourself, but let go of the things you cannot change, and praise him for the vessel he has given you. Also, remember that God is the creator of other humans too, don’t hurt them either.

"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them."  Genesis 1:27