Welcome to God's Lemonade Stand

It is my hope that by reading this daily you will grow in your walk with Christ and be set free from any struggles in your life that are weighing you down. Be blessed to be a blessing.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

LET THE RESOLUTIONS BEGIN!


Most of this past month I have written allot on new beginnings and
doing things over. Typically at the start of a New Year people
initially get real serious about changing things or starting something
new they need to do. The biggie is usually losing weight. That is why
on TV you will see all sorts of ads for weight loss pills, miracles
fixes, and weight loss programs. In the Christian community many may
say 'I will read my Bible through in one year' which is also very
admirable I might say. Basically a New Year is a time to throw the old
calendar out and decide to commit to something and DO IT.
Unfortunately many of those well meaning people end their resolution
before the month is over. It sounded good but they just can not get
into it. Commit is a pretty big scary word.

This week while watching one of my favorite Bible teachers, Joyce
Meyer, on her show "Enjoying Everyday Life" she said something which
struck me as a very good point. She asked the audience if they
were"dating" Jesus or ready to get "married". In a nutshell this
simply means that if you think about dating someone you go out for
maybe one or two hours and that is that. Maybe if you really like the
person you end up spending more time with them. Then you fall in love
and from then on nothing else in the world matters. Then comes the
marriage and life is good and you are together most all the time. So
back to her illustration. Are you just dating Jesus or are you
committed to Him as if you were in a marriage relationship?

Maybe it is time to make Jesus your real true first love. When you
truly love someone you want the best for them and you put them
first.You want to be with them more than anything else in the whole
wide world. Some marriages may sour because they have forgotten their
first love and vows they took. Well some relationships with Jesus may
have never gotten off the ground in the first place. Perhaps you went
to church and became a member and that was that. No real love or
"fire" for the Lord. Many folks are like that. They do the Sunday
thing and feel good about themselves for being "holy" but do not
bother to even spend time with Jesus any other time of the week. Now I
ask you, is that showing you are in love with Jesus? The answer is no.
That only shows you are a "church member". What do you need to do
about this if you fit into that category? First ask yourself the big
question. Have you ever really asked Jesus to be Lord of your life?
Did you do it at a certain age in your church only because others were
but it meant nothing? Maybe you were sprinkled as a infant. Maybe it
is time to reexamine your heart and put the fire for Jesus back in
there and live for Him and have a passion for the things of the Lord.
I am going to give you six verses to read. After you have read them
pray and ask God to come into your life if you have not already. Next
commit to pray daily and get out that Bible and get to know Him. Be in
love with Jesus!
 Romans 3:23(NIV) For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
 Romans 6:23(NIV)For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 5:8(NIV) But God demonstrates his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 10:13(NIV) For, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved!
Revelation 3:20(NIV) Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
Where are you today in your walk with Jesus? This is not about a denomination thing. This is not something where you say 'I go to church there because my family always did'. Where is your heart? Do you feel a passion for the things of Christ or are you more caught up in the things of the everyday world. Is your heart broken by what breaks Gods heart? Maybe it is time now to reexamine your heart and ask Him to come in and live in your heart today or rededicate your life to Him and get serious about living for Him. Don't just "be religious" but love Jesus.
 PRAYER: Lord I thank you that you are a patient God not wishing any to perish. I thank you that it is not about a certain denomination but it is about whether I have given my heart to you Lord. I want to be serious about my walk with you. I want my heart to be broken each day by what breaks yours. Give me the strength to live out this walk in the world around me. In Jesus' name. Amen.
 Click on link below and worship God in song:
> http://youtu.be/othYj8jWSwc

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

TURN THE OTHER CHEEK


Do you ever just feel like getting back at someone for how they treated
you? It could be a spouse, a friend, or someone else. Whatever and
whoever it is not God's plan to retaliate. Romans 12:17(NIV) says 'Do
not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the
eyes of everybody.' As spoken of yesterday we need to maintain peace
at all costs. But what about someone who said something about you that is not true or is spreading rumors? Don't you have the "right" then to get back?
The first human reaction to when someone hurts you is sadness,hurt, or the
need to say something back to them. Maybe you want to get your way or
the last word. That is not the wisest thing to do. The best way to
defuse an angry outburst or hurt feeling is to 'hold your tongue' and
try to get your emotions under control.

James 1:19(NLT) I often think would be an excellent verse for married
couples to say each and every day and to commit to memory. It simply
says 'Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be
quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.' Another
equally excellent scripture is found in Proverbs 15:1(NIV). It reads
as follows 'A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs
up anger.' Think on that one for a moment why don't you? How much
better to say nothing back than to get the "fire of anger" stoked up
and end up in a yelling match. 2 Corinthians 13:11(NASB) tells us
'Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be
like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with
you.' See there is that word again, "peace". Peace is not achieved by
bickering or belittling. It is achieved by "turning the other cheek".
Letting go of your right to get back basically. The turn the other
cheek thing is actually found in God's word in both Matthew 5:39 and
Luke 6:29. Why not take a moment to look them up.

There may have been moments when you just felt you could not contain
yourself over something someone said about you or to you. I recommend
going to Jesus in prayer and asking God to put love within your heart
for this person no matter the outcome. Keep trying to show God's love
in word and deed.

Matthew 5:44(NLT) says 'But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for
those who persecute you.' Leave the rest up to God.

PRAYER: Sometimes it seems it is easy to get angry at a person over
something that may be so silly. Help me Lord learn to walk away and
drop it and not cause a fight or a broken relationship. Give me
strength to walk away from potential situations Lord. Put your Spirit
within me. In Jesus' name. Amen.
 
 
 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

ARE YOU A SEEKER OF PEACE?


Christmas may be behind us where everyone hears the phrase "Peace on
earth good will to men" but peace is needed around the clock 365 days
a year. Do you feel like you have peace in your life? If not what
could you do to change it? Maybe trust God and not take on worry so
much?

In 1 Peter 5:7(NIV) we are told to 'Cast all your cares on Him for He
cares for you'. God's intent was never for us to bear a burden alone.
We are to share concerns with trusted family and friends and also try
to give them over to God. What good does worry do anyway? Can you
think of one thing positive it helps with? I can't. So why do we rob
ourselves of valuable peace by sitting around and fretting? Psalm
34:14(NIV) says to 'Seek peace and pursue it'. To pursue means to go
after. Can you make "going after" peace a priority of your life?
Whether at work, at home, with strangers or friends, make it your aim
to try to remain peaceful. When things go bad and you feel like you
want to explode inside, call on God and ask Him to help you remain
calm. When life throws you a curve ball ask God to keep you thinking
on good things. It is only through focusing on positive and not
negative that we can hope to have that type of peace God wants us to
have.Your environment might have to change. If watching the nightly
news stresses you out for instance, turn it off. That is just one
small example.

Here are a few more verses to read and meditate upon dealing with the
subject of peace:
Romans 14:19(NIV) Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads
to peace and mutual edification.
Hebrews 12:14(NIV) Make every effort to live in peace with all men and
to be holy, without holiness no man shall see God.
1 Peter 3:11(NIV) He must turn from evil and do good, He must seek
peace and pursue it.
John 14:27(NIV) Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not
give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and
do not be afraid.
Colossians 3:15(NIV) Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts,
since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be
thankful.
Romans 12:16(NIV) Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud,
but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be
conceited.
It is my hope that by reading the above verses out loud, if you are in
a place you are able to, you will start to feel the power and presence
of God. Peace is something that is very important to seek after, as the
enemy, Satan, is constantly bombarding us trying to get us to be
frazzled. Do not allow it! Finally one final verse is in James 4:7
(NIV) and it simply says 'Resist the devil and he will flee from you.'
You can do it my friend! God is there to help!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus it is my desire to walk with peace day after day. I
know bad things in life will happen but I ask you to give me your
supernatural ability to take on your character. I know Lord the more I
read and meditate upon your word the more peaceful I will be so as I
seek to do this help me Lord to not make excuses. In Jesus' name.
Amen.

Monday, January 28, 2013

ONE LETTER AT A TIME


Recently I saw a movie called "The Letter Writer" which basically
showed the impact one nice letter or positive gesture can have on a
person. In this email and communication device generation, we have all
but lost the art of letter writing. Long gone are the days of saving
letters from a loved one in a shoe box in the attic. Sort of sad I
think.

Your words, cards, and letters can be a positive source of
encouragement for someone who is lonely, sick, or perhaps needing a
bit of hope in their lives. A good word can light up a person's day.

Back in about 1993 when our family was leaving Wright Patterson AFB in
Ohio for Rock Island Arsenal,Illinois our mailman saw me one day and
knew I was moving and jokingly said to me 'There goes half my
business' because indeed I did like sending letters and cards and
still do.My husband joked I was paying the mailman's salary the
mailbox had so much outgoing mail in it at times.

Words can uplift or hurt. They can bring joy or pain. They can cause
laughter or bring on pain. Choose yours wisely whether talking or
writing. Being hasty can get you into much trouble or embarrassment,
take it from one who knows. Ecclesiasters 5:2(NIV) reminds us 'Do not
be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter
anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let
your words be few.'

Proverbs 25:11(NIV) says 'A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold
in settings of silver.' Ephesians 4:29(NIV) says 'do not let any
unwholesome talk come out of your mouths but only what is helpful in
building others up according to their needs, that it many benefit
those who listen.' Meditate on that for a while.

Who do you need to bring cheer to today? Perhaps a lonely soldier
overseas away from family? Maybe an elderly parent? Could a friend use
a boost? Maybe a total stranger? That is what this movie was about. I
actually received a letter from a person I did not know once who told
me God told him to write the letter to me. It was a young person I had
met briefly at a Joyce Meyer conference in Arizona. A few days later
I needed the comfort of the words in that letter and still have it to
this day. You never know
who God will use you to reach out to. Be ready and willing to be a
vessel He can use.

PRAYER: Lord today show me if there is anyone who needs an encourage
word from me either by mail, email, phone, or in person. I want you to
use me to bring cheer to the lives of others and spread your love. In
Jesus' name. Amen.

Link to info on movie:
http://www.christianfilmguide.com/movie/the-letter-writer-2011/

Sunday, January 27, 2013

LIGHT STOPS DARKNESS



 It is a pretty commonly understood fact that when you enter a dark
room and flip on the light switch, instantly the room becomes
illuminated with light. If you are camping in the woods and at
nightfall as the sun sets you build a campfire, you once again are in
the light. When your electricity goes out in a storm you either get a
flashlight or light a candle. Once again you get the same result and
that is the room becomes lit up and you no longer have a chance of
stumbling in the darkness.

In God's word, the Bible, Satan is referred to in terms of darkness
and Jesus as being the light. Light always wins over darkness. You can
not keep darkness around with the presence of light.
Are you being a light for Jesus in the world you are in each day?
Does your presence light up a room or make no difference at all? We
all who claim to know and follow him should be lights for Him. I
remember a child hood song called A Sunbeam. It went something like
this, "A sunbeam, a sunbeam, Jesus wants me for a sunbeam. A sunbeam a
sunbeam, I'll be a sunbeam for Him". Can you and will you make an
effort to me that "Sunbeam for Jesus" wherever you go during your day?
You are in the grocery so smile at people. Be kind to others by
opening a door or two. At work be responsible and polite and do not
enter into work place gossip.I am sure you can think of other
examples.

The light of the world is Jesus but darkness does not like the light.
Satan does not like Jesus or any of those of us who are His followers.
You can expect evil things and dark things when you refer to the
enemy. John 3:19 says 'This is the verdict. Light has come into the
world but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were
evil.' Good equals Jesus and light and evil and Satan represents darkness.
 

 Let me leave you with a couple verses the first being also from the
book of John chapter one verse 5 and it says 'the light shines in the
darkness but the darkness understood it not.' Those who do not have
the light of Jesus in their hearts perhaps can not understand the
things of God. Finally 1 Corinthians 1:18(NIV) says it plainly when it
says 'The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are
perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.'
Never stop shining the light of Jesus into the darkness of this world.

PRAYER: Lord I want to light up the world around me with your love.
Help me expose the deeds of darkness around mead protect me Lord as
the enemy does not like us to talk about Jesus and salvation. Help me
to show love and shine your light even on those who shun me. In Jesus'
name. Amen.

Click on link below and worship the Lord with a powerful song.
http://youtu.be/CVqR6kTu8lE

Saturday, January 26, 2013

WHAT ARE YOU "EATING"?


What do you have a constant "diet" of? I am not referring necessarily
to food but you have to consume the right amount of food and the right
types to stay healthy and within a good weight for your height. You
have to drink water to flush out toxins. Don't sit down and watch soap
operas all day unless you want to feed your brain on that . In a
similar way, don't play violent video games or your mind could be
affected. Pornography can captivate both men, and yes, women too so do
not even go there. Even some radio and TV shows can place wrong
thinking in your head. I urge caution and praying if you are in doubt
about something. Many things become your "daily diet" and tend to
shape you if you are not careful. Whatever you feed upon you tend to
drift towards.

The prescription for leading a good life pleasing to God is to feed on
good things. Turn on Christian worship music to lift you up. You can
listen to KLOVE on line I know and here in my area WAY FM is an
excellent choice. There may be some used to the old hymns which I am
not meaning to condemn but some of today's Christian artists have
awesome songs of worship that can really lift you up. I often include
one with my devotions to help set a mood. Give them a chance and I
think you will be pleasantly surprised.

In Romans 12:2(NIV) it reminds us ' Do not conform to the pattern of
this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you
will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing
and perfect will.' To be conformed to the world is to fit in a little
too much where the things of the world seem to be more important than
God. Is there something in your life you find you give more time to
than our Lord Jesus Christ? Just ponder that for a while. Do you get
up each day and look forward to spending time in reading God's word?
The only way to be conformed to Christ's image is to spend time in the
word, pray and you will slowly take on the character of Christ. Do you
spend more time with Oprah or Good Morning America than in time with
God. Which of those things do you think are shaping you then?

Christ does not bicker about denominations and who should not have
tattoos or earrings. He does not say 'Oh look at so and so. Can you
believe they do not have a tie on?' Jesus wants you to come as you are
to the throne of grace. He does not have a dress code for going to his
house to worship although many churches sort of make things up to seem
acceptable. The main thing is do you love the Lord your God with all
your heart, soul, and mind or are you too worried about other people
and what they do and your way is the only right way? He wants your
undivided attention and he wants to be what you feed upon. Why not get
your Bible out of hiding and pick it up and start with the book of
Psalms and ask God to show things to you in His word. Be blessed to be
a blessing.
Colossians 3:1(NIV) says "Since, then, you have been raised with
Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the
right hand of God." Are you able to set your mind and heart on things
above or are your passions to consumed in this world and its' passing
fantasies?
PRAYER: Lord Jesus I want to be transformed to your image. I want the
light of Jesus to radiate from me. I know when I gripe, bicker,
complain, condemn, judge or belittle I am not acting as you would act.
Forgive me. Today I choose to "feast" upon the word of God so I can be
strong in the Lord and take on the character of Christ. In Jesus'
name. Amen.
Click link below for a worship song to get your mind focused on things above:
http://youtu.be/8vNPcmLzlvI

Friday, January 25, 2013

SIN IS SIN, PERIOD!!



I have seen a tactic in our United States government the past couple
years that is similar to what the enemy does with sin and that is to "sugarcoat"
it. Within the power of the executive branch they like to rename unpopular things they know
will be distasteful or a majority of Americans do not want, in order to try
to slide something through that is not good for America. One example I
think of now is calling the Fort Hood deaths at the hands of a terrorist, "work place violence". A war is called an "action" or something more gentle. Destroying the best health care system in the world is
called "The Patient Affordable Health Care Act". Crafty words are used to imply something is not so bad when in fact it is a lie or a disaster waiting to happen. Amnesty is being renamed something like "Pathway to Citizenship". Sort of deceptive wouldn't you say?

 Satan loves to trick us into making sin not look so bad. It all started in the Garden of Eden when God had specifically told Adam and Eve to not eat from the tree in the midst of the garden. (See Genesis 3:3).

Satan also makes alcohol not look so bad but if you read Proverbs 23:31-35(NIV) it says "Do not look at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly! In the end it bites like a snake and poisons like an viper. Your eyes will see strange sights and your mind will imagine confusing things. You will be like one sleeping on the high seas, lying on top of the rigging. "They hit me!" you will say, "but I'm not hurt. They beat me but I did not feel it, when will I wake up so I can find another drink?"' Alcohol consumption is not a sin in and of itself, but this verse illustrates how Satan could use it in his arsenal to get you drunk and doing stupid things, maybe even that lead to violence, death, or the break up of a family.

There may be flashing neon lights outside a strip club but inside sin lurks and is waiting to tear apart families and destroy lives. A loose woman may be pretty to look at and entice you to commit adultery by her smooth talk but that also is a tool the enemy uses to destroy lives.Read Proverbs Chapter 7 to learn more.

A lie whether it is called "misspeaking" or a "white lie" is still a LIE and we are not to lie. Stealing even an office ink pen, cause "they owe it to me" is still theft of property. Remember it says in
John 10:10 'The thief comes but to kill, steal, and destroy. I came that they might have life and have it more abundantly.'

The Bible says we are all sinners. Romans 3:23(NIV) states 'we all have sinned and fallen short of God's glory.' Don't do things you know are sinful or may lead you down the wrong path. Staying in the word of God and saturating your life with good praise and worship music will lift your spirits and helps you to avoid the pitfalls and traps that Satan sets for us. Do you desire a life pleasing to God? He is waiting for you to call upon Him and He will give you strength for your challenges.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus thank you that you are there for me in the daily struggles of life. I know it breaks your heart when I sin so Lord bring conviction of wrong and evil to my heart. Help me lead a life pleasing unto you. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Click on link below and worship God in song:
http://youtu.be/FqXZD_z3eCc

Note: Here in the Huntsville area on Monday February 11 we are blessed to get to have several Christian artists come for the Rockin Worship Road Show. Jeremy Camp, the artist who sang the song I included today, is one of many who will bless us with his praise and worship music.
Check out the link I have included and if close to you go for a night of praise and worship and benefit Compassion International.
http://therockandworshiproadshow.com/

Thursday, January 24, 2013

DON'T DO IT BY YOURSELF



Do you often try to be a one man or one woman show without the help of others or God? It is easy to get wrapped up in self at times. Why not each day before you jump into the day's activities take a few moments to spend time alone with God?  Ask Him to help and guide you. Ask Him to keep you away from evil or seeking your own way. Make sure nothing gets in the way of seeking God's face and praying. Then don't be afraid of asking others to come along side you in prayer.

A familiar verse to some may be Proverbs 3:5-6(NIV) which says 'Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths', but the verse right after those, verse seven, says
'Do not be wise in your own eyes, fear God and shun evil.' Basically that says to seek wisdom from above or maybe even counsel from a trusted Christian friend.

Do yourself a favor and seek wisdom from above as the best bet. James 3:17 (NIV) says that 'the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure, then peace loving,then considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.' I don't know about you but that is the kind of wisdom I would love to have. Why not start today and ask for God's wisdom to fill you and guide your every thought and step?

PRAYER: You oh Lord are full of wisdom and truth. At times I have tried to do things under my own power and my own way. Forgive me for not coming to you in prayer first. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

GOD, ONLY YOU CAN HELP ME


Are you frustrated over a life situation? Maybe loss of friends?
Perhaps a divorce? Frustration over a situation you can not
understand? Perhaps your side of the story, which caused a problem,
has not been heard and you are misunderstood and criticized. It is at
times no one understands us and we do not know what else to do that we
run to God. He is your one true friend that does not put requirements
on you about how you have to act or be in life. Isn't that great to
know?

Psalm 46:1(KJV) says 'God is our refuge and strength. A very present
help in times of trouble.' Do you allow Him to be that "refuge" or do
you try to orchestrate solutions yourself? Are you able to love and
forgive people with His love? What about those who you need to regain
trust in?

In this brand new year why not allow God to permeate every area of
your life? Give Him your hurts and concerns. 1 Peter 5:7(NIV) should
be a familiar verse by now to faithful readers of this devotion blog.
It simply says 'Cast all your anxiety on Him for He cares for you.'
He does not want you to bear the weight of this world on your
shoulders alone. Run to Him today and let His love set you free.

PRAYER: Lord I thank you that you are only a prayer away. I thank you
for loving me and being there for me when I feel like the world has
run out on me. Your love never fails. Thanks for that. In Jesus' name.
Amen.

Click on the link below and praise God in song:
http://youtu.be/gArr7gyiMBY

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

GOD IS THE BEST SHELTER EVER


Have you ever been out walking or hiking and a sudden unexpected storm
hits? If there is no where to go you simply are out in the elements.
But if you are on a golf course often there are "shelters". Sometimes
in a park there will be a "shelter house" or as they were known in
Arizona, "ramada's". On hiking trails sometimes you will be fortunate
enough to find a "lean to" but basically a shelter is extremely
important for protection. Also people have "financial shelters" like
their 401k but even that can falter.

Life in general has many things you need to be sheltered from. Right
up there on top of the list are attacks from the "enemy" in the form
of "spiritual warfare". The enemy is not a little guy in red pajamas
with a pitch fork but he is deceiving and cunning and can trick the
most well meaning person. He operates here on this earth through
earthly subjects who have been taken captive by him, sometimes without
their knowledge. He is a liar and a thief.(See John 10:10).He hates
anything to do with the kingdom of God. He loves it when Christians do
not read their Bibles as then they are powerless to defeat Him. He
hates The United States as we were founded on Biblical principles and
the founders used the Holy Bible when writing the Constitution. His
goal would be to destroy this great land and all we stand for. He
loves "spiritual weaklings" who simply go to church and think that is
enough.

Are you a spiritual weakling or are you a mighty warrior for God?
Which do you want to be? In Psalm 46:1(GNT) it says 'God is our
shelter and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.' God
should be your shelter and your strength. Don't rely on men,
government or your bank account to help you. They will fail. Only God
and His word can see you through any trial in your life and completely
shelter you from the storms of life.

Let me end with Psalm 18:2(NIV) which says 'the Lord is my rock, my
fortress, and my deliverer. My God is my rock in whom I take refuge.
He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.' Who is
your shelter today? Run to Jesus. He will always help you.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus thank you for my life. I know that the enemy is
waging a war against good and evil. Keep me alert to the dangers in my
path thrown at me by Satan. Protect my family as well and open their
spiritual eyes to lies of the enemy. I choose to look to you. In
Jesus' name. Amen.

Have a great day. Click on link below and start your day with a song of joy:
http://youtu.be/5uc1smOOs7A

Monday, January 21, 2013

SPEAK AND THINK GOOD THINGS


 Do you often get in a negative mindset? Let's say you feel a sense of
doom and gloom and you talk about it. Maybe you talk about your
problems. You dwell on bad stuff and fears and therefore talk about
them. A feeling of despair comes over you. Why? Because of your words.
Words are something we all have to watch. If you continually speak
about the negative things in life and stuff that frightens you, it
stands to reason you would be stuck in a defeated state of mind that
would drag you right down in a pit. Our thoughts and our speech should
be the kind that glorifies God.

Proverbs 18:21(NIV) says 'Death and life are in the power of the
tongue and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.' Simply
stated, what you continually talk about is what you get. If your mind
dwells on a consistent diet of bad thoughts then those thoughts often
are of elected in our speech.
>
If this is an area you struggle with why not use this brand new year
to purpose in your heart to only let good thoughts and good things
come from your mouth. Luke 6:45(NIV) says 'The good man brings good
things out of the goodness stored in his heart,and the evil man brings
evil things out of the evil stored in his heart. For out of the
overflow of the heart,the mouth speaks.'
>
> Our enemy, Satan,thrives in seeing believers all weak and caught up in wrong thinking, worry, and despair. When we are like this we become weak and powerless and almost disabled for the kingdom of God. Right now speak out loud to your enemy,Satan, and tell him you are a child of God and you want him to get behind you as you are God's child.
>
> It is through meditating on God's word on a daily basis and casting off wrong thoughts that you can have victory. 1 Corinthians 15:57( NIV) reminds us of this when it says 'And thanks be to God who gives us the VICTORY through our Lord Jesus Christ.' Hallelujah!!
>
> PRAYER: You oh Lord are mighty and powerful and your word, the Bible , keeps me on the right track in life. There are times when I have let Satan bog me down with wrong thinking and it is mainly when I am not in constant communion with your through your word. Forgive me Lord. Guide me as each and every day I need you to fight the battles in my path that the enemy my throw at me. In Jesus' name. Amen.
>
> OTHER RESOURCES: Pastor Gregory Dickow out of Chicago, IL has a website you should check out and commit to doing if wrong thinking is a problem of yours. Go to www.thinkingfast.org and commit to changing wrong thoughts.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

CRACKED FOUNDATIONS


How many people reading this have ever built a home? When you do, you
realize how crucial a good firm foundation is to the entire home. If
you build on a sink hole your home may disappear. Shifting sand is not
a good foundation. It is not a good idea to build on an underground
cave either or your home may collapse. Building on a active fault line
probably is not wise either. Perhaps there may be an underground
spring which is also a good thing to avoid. Basically you want good
solid rock that will not shift.

Just as in building the foundation is vitally important, so also is
your foundation for life. Is Jesus the foundation you are rooted and
grounded upon? When we build upon things of the world they can not
sustain us through trials and turmoil which are sure to come in your
life. Only God provides the necessary "solid rock" for you to go
through life with.

Who do you listen to in life? Is God the foundation of your life or
just a passing thought or something you do on Sunday like a social
club?

Matthew 7:24 (NIV) tells us'Therefore everyone who hears these words
of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his
house upon the rock.' This leads to the question. Are you wise or are
you a fool? Do you desire more of Christ in your life? Would you like
to make Him the center and not an afterthought?

Don't let the winds and storms of life knock you off your foundation.
Decide now in 2013 to let Him have first place in your life!

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for my life. Thank you Lord for all the
blessings in my life. I often go through my day and do not even stop
to "talk" to you or read the Bible.I want that to change. I purpose
Lord to reorder my day where you are first place. In Jesus' name.
Amen.

Click on link before to praise God in song:
http://youtu.be/DwRk8jmRSMo

Saturday, January 19, 2013

TRYING TO STAY POSITIVE IN 2013


 
It seems as though the area of staying positive, uplifted and not
worried is a major issue with many people. There is plenty to despair
about if you turn on the evening news. To stay focused on good you
have to make a deliberate effort to remove distractions from your life
that tend to cause you to get upset, sad, worried and fretful.

What is stealing your peace? Bad news on TV, worry about your job, a
family situation? This is not to say we have to "stick our head in the
sand" but do not allow yourself to be agitated and upset with the
things of the world. Also sometimes when we try to control a person or
situation, it will bring on immense frustration. Give whatever it is
that is bothering you over to the Lord. You may recall the verse in 1
Peter 5:7(NIV) that reminds us to 'cast all your anxiety on Him for He
cares for you.'

On that New Years resolution list beside where you might have written
"get in shape" why not try to make it a point to be a "spiritual
fitness freak" and spend oodles of time alone with Jesus. This will
only occur when you purposely set time aside DAILY to get into His
word and pray. How important is having peace and joy to you? Try
giving God the first part of your day and not reading the newspaper
before the Bible or flipping on a morning show only to get upset and
stressed over world news. Tune into God instead!

PRAYER: A new year brings excitement for new ideas, new goals, new
ventures. Lord I know I need to give you more time and I need to dwell
on things that uplift and not tear down and destroy. With your help I
can achieve this goal. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Friday, January 18, 2013

GOLD IS GOOD


The word "gold" is passed around lots these days. Gold has a meaning
that refers to money or something special. Take for instance the Ft
Knox Gold Vault in Kentucky where gold bullion is stored. Gold coins
are touted as a good investment. There is a "gold" card member in
Starbucks sort of signifying you are a special frequent customer.
"Gold" status can be gained on your credit card too allowing you many
perks or as a frequent flyer. A band of "gold" often symbolizes the
marriage of man and wife. So a "gold thing" apparently seems to be a
"good thing".

Gold is imperishable. It is sought after by many. Back in the early
history of the American West many went to California seeking their
fortune in mining gold. There is a show on Discovery Channel about
gold in Alaska called "Gold Rush". It is still highly valued and
sought after by man.

In the Bible gold is referred to many times. In Proverbs 25:11(NIV) it
says 'a word aptly spoken is like gold in settings of silver.' In
Psalm 19:9-10(NIV) gold is used to describe the laws of God. It says
'The fear of the Lord is pure enduring forever. The ordinances of the
Lord are sure and righteous altogether.They are more precious than
gold, than much pure gold, they are sweeter than honey, than honey
from the comb.' Now that is quite a word picture.

The word gold is often used in the context of a good thing when a
person gets a "golden opportunity". Gold never seems to imply anything
bad. The Bible tells us that heaven streets are paved with gold. (See
Revelation chapter 21). It is mentioned in 1 Peter 3:3(NIV) that
ladies adorning should not be only wearing gold jewelry, so even in
this verse it draws attention to gold being something that gets
noticed. It definitely is special to God.

What are you doing in your life to be 'golden' for the Lord? Basically
are you a vessel He can be proud of and one that could be compared to
a gold treasure? Just something to think about in 2013.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus your word to me is more precious than gold. I want
to hide it in my heart. If there was a tornado I would want to grab
the Bible to have with me in my storm shelter. I desire to sparkle
like gold for you Jesus wherever I go. In Jesus name. Amen.
>

Thursday, January 17, 2013

TAKE TIME TO SMELL THE ROSES


Do you rush through your day hardly stopping to take a break or a
breath? You may use the all too familiar excuse that you are working
and no time for a break. Try to get yourself out of your cubicle and
outside to enjoy God's creation. Our lives are often times filled with
non stop activities such as meetings, classes, clubs, sports, shopping
and much more. In this busy time God is often forgotten in the
equation. Somehow all the other things make the "to do" list but the
most important thing, spending time with Jesus, takes a back seat to
everything seemingly more important.

Through a ministry I have been a part of now for over 16 years now,
Moms in Prayer International, formerly Moms in Touch, there is a thing
called a "DAWG" day which I encourage ladies, and men, to try to make
time for sometime. It stands for "Day Alone With God" where you simply
get away from your home and distractions and go someplace quiet, safe,
and peaceful and pray and read your Bible. My area of choice here
happens to be a state park nearby. You just sort of get time to
regroup, think, pray, confess sins in your life, and study God's word.
Even if you only have two hours to spare, try it sometime and leave
the cell phone off.

It is during these times of peace you have time to appreciate what God
has done for you. To "smell the roses" is to truly appreciate God's
mercy and goodness. We can not fully tune in to God if we are
constantly distracted by things in life so it is necessary to have
that time alone.

Psalm 46:10(NIV) says 'Be still and know that I am God.I will be
exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth.'

PRAYER: Lord I need to insure I do not allow the busyness of life to
squeeze you out. I know the enemy is thrilled when I do not make time
for you. Forgive me Lord. I can not expect to know you by only giving
you one hour on Sunday. My desire is to seek your face and make time
for you daily making sure other things do not come first. In Jesus'
name. Amen.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

NO SECRETS FROM GOD



You may be able to keep secrets from people in your life but there are
no secrets from our Lord and Saviour. He knows it all.  Things you
have done in the past that bring you guilt or shame do not shock God.
You may be fearful of sharing something with even those close to you
as Satan has told you they will think bad of you. Remember that Satan
is called "the accuser of the bretheren" in Revelation 12:10. That is
the way Satan makes people hold on to their guilt even long after the
offense was committed. He will remember your sin no more!  Psalm
103:12(NIV) says it this way 'as far as the east is from the west, so
far has he removed our transgressions from us.'

You can run but you can't hide. Be sure your sins will find you out.
Luke 8:17(NIV) says 'For there is nothing hidden that will not be
disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out
into the open.' Maybe you have done something incredibly stupid or
messed up in a big way and you just do not want anyone to find out.
Sometimes sharing things with our trusted Christian brothers and
sisters or a family member can help.

Psalm 44:20-21(NIV) reminds us 'If we had forgotten the name of our
God or spread out our hands to a foreign god, would not God have
discovered it, since he knows the secrets of the heart? ' Once again
He is God. He is Lord. He knows all things. Your conscience will make
you feel guilty but you can run to God and talk to Him in prayer and
know that He cares and loves you. Ask Him for the strength to resist
doing evil or staying away from things that tempt you the wrong way.
God loves you no matter what.

PRAYER: Lord I know you love me no matter what I have done. I do not
want to walk a life that separates myself from you. Father help me
each day to get into the word of God and know you better. Turn me from
doing anything that does not please you or brig you glory. In Jesus'
name. Amen.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

DON'T GIVE UP!


What it is in life that is getting you down with discouragement and
despair? Perhaps it is loss of a job? Maybe an illness that threatens
your life? Is it maybe the state of our country if you are reading
this from the United States? Loss of a friend or family member to
death recently or in the past? Perhaps guilt over abortion? Maybe you
are pregnant and unmarried? Whatever it is God hears and understands.
Sometimes when people feel "down" they may listen to "wrong
voices" and feel that the only way out is to end their life. My
friend, that is never the way out. Ask any surviving family
members of those who have committed suicide.

On talk radio the other day there was a former Navy Seal who called
in, and I wish I had his name to give him credit for something. He
had lost his leg, arm and was suffering greatly, feeling very down but
he said that talk radio "propped him up when he felt like giving up".
That is sort of how God is and our friends too. When you run to God
and run to the Bible you can have peace. When overcome by discouraging
thoughts it is necessary to not drown your problems in alcohol or
drugs. Those cures are placed in your head by the enemy who is out to
destroy you. God is here to make you whole and to get you through the
tough times to the rainbow that awaits you on the others side.

Sometimes a friend just needs to talk it out. At times you may be
tricked by Satan to not unload your burden and get help. Thoughts such
as, you will be made fun of or your friends will not want to be with
you anymore. Don't believe it! In 1 Thessalonians 5:11(NIV) it says
'Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in
fact you are doing.'

You are of great value to God. He has a purpose for you. He wants you
to run your race to win. Psalm 46:1 (NIV) says 'God is our refuge and
strength. A very present
help in time of trouble.' Run to Him today.

PRAYER: Lord thank you for helping me through the storms of life that
come my way. I know Lord I need to get into the word when the enemy
gets me thinking gloomy thoughts. It is only through you that I gain
strength for each day. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link below for an awesome song to lift you up.
http://youtu.be/CZzUFei6slA

I have included links to some hotlines for those in crisis:
Suicide Hotline: 1-800-SUICIDE 
Prayer Hotline:1-800-759-0700 (Operated by volunteer counselors from
The 700 Club)
Pregnancy Hotline: 1-800-395-HELP 
Runaways Hotline:1-800-RUNAWAY
Veterans' Crisis Hotline: 1-800-273-8255 
ALL ISSUES: 1-800-AFAMILY (Not 24 Hours)
 
 
 

Monday, January 14, 2013

MY BEST FRIEND


When asked who your best friend is, if you are married you might
answer your spouse. Perhaps you might list a dear friend from high
school or college. Maybe you will say your mom or dad or your sibling.
Do you ever consider Jesus as your best friend? Would you like Him to
be?

To be a best friend you need to be loyal, kind, uplifting, faithful,
honest, and loving. Jesus is all that and more. You may not be able to
call Him up and have Him meet you for coffee but He is with you
everywhere you go anyway. ( See Matthew 28:20).

Sometimes earthly friends can disappoint or hurt us. Jesus will never
hurt you, abandon you, be ashamed of you ,or forsake you.

When our youngest son was very small and he would often tell us he
loved us 'one less than God'. From the mouth of babes. A friend told
me she was praying for her child's spouse to love God more than her
child. Isn't that awesome?! When you love the Lord you hunger for His
word and want to put Him first. You love every person to include your
spouse if you are married, with the love God has given you, that
being unconditional love. Who wouldn't want that?

Matthew 22:37(NIV) says 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart,
your soul, and all your mind.'. Mark 12:31(NIV) further states the
greatest commandment is 'to love your neighbor as yourself.'

Do you want to truly make Jesus first in 2013 and let Him be your best
friend. By spending quality time with Him in His word you will be a
better friend to your earthly best friend.
PRAYER: Lord I want you to be my best friend. I know loving you first
and spending time in your word helps me to love others better with the
love only you can give. In Jesus name. Amen.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

THERE IS ALWAYS HOPE


 A new year is a chance to remember there is always hope. No matter
what the situation you can be lifted out of your pit of despair. Jesus
is our hope! He is there when humans fail us. He is there to comfort.
He hears your prayers.

Hope is defined as a "feeling or expectation or desire for a certain
thing to happen." What is it you are hoping for? A breakthrough
perhaps in a family members life you have been praying for? The Bible
says in Luke 18:1 that 'we should pray and never give up.' Can you
keep on keeping on and pray even when it seems nothing is happening?
God's ways our not our ways it says in Isaiah 55:8.

My hope indeed is in God above, creator of heaven and earth. He alone
can do all things. He is King of kings and Lord of lords. Nothing is
impossible with Him it says in Luke 1:37.

PRAYER:Jesus you are our only hope when times are good or when times
are bad. I put my trust in you. I know with you in my life you are my
reason for never giving up. I stand on the solid rock and nothing
formed against me or my family shall prosper it says in Isaiah 54:17.
In Jesus' name. Amen.

Click on link for a song of praise and hope:
http://youtu.be/W48NfLLSFNc

Also please check out author and friend Kathe Wunnenberg blog at
http://www.hopelifters.blogspot.com/

Saturday, January 12, 2013

BEGIN ANEW


Two weeks have nearly passed and hopefully all of you reading this
have started writing "2013" and not "2012" on things requiring a date.
A new year, a new date, and new adventures. What are you doing in this
brand new year to start anew?

A new endeavor, a hobby, or a goal in mind? Something to reach for or
finish? Procrastinators are happy for the first few weeks of the new
year each time it rolls around but not so thrilled when December 31st
approaches and they are still stuck in the same rut of not
accomplishing what was intended.

What is it you have set for your goals in 2013? Do any of them have
spiritual significance? Some ideas would be showing kindness to
strangers. Perhaps helping a family in need. Maybe writing to your
mom if she is still living and does not do email. Showing Jesus' love
in your job or wherever life has you at the moment. Being kind and
respectful to those closest to us. Sharing what God has blessed you
with if you see a need you can help meet. Reading the Bible daily and
starting a journal. Changing churches if you just go out of habit.
Praying with fervor and not just a "lay me downtown sleep" prayer. Not
gossiping or complaining or in other words, mouth control. Why not set
some goals for how you can be closer to the Lord in 2013. After all
you have a brand new year to shine for Him.

Move on and aim high. Aim high for Jesus!

Philippians 4:13 (NIV) is a good verse to commit to memory and it says
'I can do all things through Him that gives me strength.'

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for the gift of a new fresh start and a brand
new year. It is a chance to forget the past and make things right. I
look forward to spending time in your word daily Lord. The enemy has
no power over me in Jesus' mighty name. Help my light shine bright for
you in 2013! In Jesus' name. Amen.
 
 
 
 

Friday, January 11, 2013

A CLEAN SLATE IN 2013


Here we are eleven days into the New Year. Resolutions have been made
and broken. Decorations are down or coming down soon. Thank you notes
are being written. Bills are being paid. Diets have been started. Life
is getting back to the normal mode in most cases.

A new year is a good time to start things over and make things right.
A "clean slate" so to speak. For those too young to know what a
"slate" is basically it is a chalkboard or today would be a dry erase
board. You wipe it clean and start all over. Nothing is on the slate
or board and off you go to a new year and new adventures. Pretty
exciting and encouraging to get to begin again. Take stock of your
life and what has to be done and purpose in your heart, with God's
help, that you can do whatever it is you set your mind to.

Forget the errors of the past and charge on into the future with new
hopes and new dreams. If you have messed up it is time to make things
right. A new year can be wonderful, a turning point of sorts.

So what do you need to "wipe clean" in 2013? Pray and seek God and ask
Him for direction for what He would have you to do. Perhaps it is time
to right a wrong that has occurred. Maybe you really need to spend
more time in the word of God to get to know Him better. Maybe you need
to learn to love more. Perhaps it is not talking so much. Don't dwell
on past failures. Whatever it is, spend some time in prayer and ask
God to show you what He has for you in 2013.

Isaiah 40:31(NKJV) says 'But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew
their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall
run and not be weary and they shall walk and not faint.'

PRAYER: I am excited to get a chance to start over in 2013 or build on
things I had not finished in 2012. With your help Lord I can reach my
goals. Help me Lord to relax and trust in you. In Jesus' name.Amen

Thursday, January 10, 2013

THE CHANGING TIMES



A few days ago as I entered a restaurant in Tulsa with my sister and
observed the Tulsa World newspaper rack, it made me think about how
things in our world, technology speaking, are drastically changing. In
a few years newspaper racks may be obsolete and sold on Craig's List.
Those born in the future may find it odd that we had party lines,
phones with cords, black and white television, paper books to read, a
typewriter, no way to record television shows, and perhaps even cars
with keys to start them. Not only is technology changing, but sad to
say, that morals have dramatically plummeted straight into the
proverbial cesspool as well. This is NOT a good thing.

Did we ever think we would have to see the day when we would have to
fight for marriage between one man and one woman? What about the fact
that we can not even have a conscious and object to something because
our Biblical standards say it is wrong? Change is NOT always a good
thing! When our own government wants to control us and take away our
God given rights and freedoms, then it is time for people to speak up.
God has not abandoned us. He still sits on the throne but He does want
us to love but He does not want us to be trampled on.

There are some that are too busy to realize what is happening and that
is just what a government "not for the people" wants. Little by little
they scheme and connive and pass laws behind our backs to take more of
our freedoms away. Democracy slowly slips into tyranny and Communism.

Change is not good when it removes our rights and our ability to
worship God as we choose. A government that allows the murder of
unborn babies in the name of "choice" is definitely not a good thing.
The buzz word is "tolerate". My Bible tells me to love but it does not
tell me to not speak up against evil and roll over and play dead.

I have been told to not write about politics. It is time for "party
loyalty" to be put aside and look at things through the eyes of Jesus.
It is the truth that will set us free it says in John 8:32. Galatians
5:1(NIV) says 'It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand
firm then and do not allow yourselves to be burdened again by a yoke
of slavery.'We are to 'overcome evil with good' it says in Romans
12:21.

What are you doing today to help keep the ability to worship freely in
our country alive? What will happen next? Perhaps order sandblasting
of the monuments in Washington, D.C. that have scripture verses on
them, which is nearly all of them. This eradication of being able to
name the name of Jesus is subtle and sneaks up on us. The First
Amendment has to be followed for it to be effective and it was for the
purpose of protecting our right of worship from the state. Now it has
been twisted and misinterpreted to make we who name the name of Jesus
almost criminal.

You have a brand new year to do things differently. Get more involved
in finding out what is happening. Don't compromise what you believe in
and above all stand up for truth, righteousness and Jesus.

Psalm103:19(NIV) says 'The Lord has established His throne in heaven
and His kingdom rules over all.'

PRAYER: Lord I thank you for the freedom to read my Bible in public
and to bow my head in prayer in a public place. I thank you for the
Internet that helps to spread the word of God worldwide. Thank you for
being able to name the name of Jesus. Give me boldness to speak up
against anything that tries to take away that freedom. In Jesus' name.
Amen.
Movie Suggestion: Last Ounce of Courage
http://www.standusa.com/last-ounce-of-courage/

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

EVIL AND GOOD/RIGHT AND WRONG


Today in our world many are getting mixed up, to include Christians.
We are to be set apart and stand for righteousness and truth. The
Bible is being twisted to justify blatant sins. Take homosexual
marriage for instance. It is wrong. Marriage is a man and a woman.
That is God's design. But a few states have legalized same sex unions.
The traditional family is the backbone of our society. We are to pray
for deliverance for those persons caught up in this lie from the
enemy. We are not to hate and judge.

Isaiah 5:20(NIV) says 'Woe to those who call evil good and good evil,
who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put butters for
sweet and sweet for bitter."

Have you ever heard the saying " If you are not part of the solution,
you are part of the problem"? Simply put if you see or hear of God's
word being trampled on in the public square it is your moral duty to
speak up in love and say something. Another familiar phrase is "Evil
triumphs when good men do nothing." (Sir Edmund Burke). When you see
something wrong do you just say 'oh well this is the 21st century' or
do you speak out against the immoral evils in our world today?

Irreverent, coarse, vulgar humor is readily accepted and sometimes
even by Christians. The recent blockbuster motion picture release
"Lincoln" did not have crude humor in it but it did have the actor
portraying President Lincoln taking the Lord's name in vain numerous
times. Why? Les Miserables is a wonderful musical but why did they
have to add implied sex scenes? Part of the story you say? Some of
today's most popular comedians make it a practice to "push the
envelope" and perhaps see nothing wrong with some of the things they
say. Prayer is needed for our movie and TV industry and many of its'
personnel. (www.mastermediaintl.org). We as Christians do not need to
run around like a monk or self righteous but we need to be lights in
the darkness around us. Satan is a great deceiver who has tricked
many. He hates the freedom we have here in our United States and has
infiltrated the government to try to eradicate it and any mention of
Jesus. He hates Christian nations.

Our nation and it's people are becoming desensitized to evil and
sinful behavior. What is wrong is being called right and what is right
is being called wrong. Today is your day to make a difference. It is a
new year, a new beginning, and new day to start standing up for what
is in God's word and to set yourself apart from evil. Pray for
discernment and opportunities to be a light for Him.

PRAYER: Lord I choose to be a light for you in the world around me.
Give me a holy boldness to speak the truth in love. I ask for
protection from the tricks of the enemy. I pray for your name to be
lifted high in America and in the entire world. In Jesus name, Amen.

 Reading Assignment: 2 Thessalonians Chapter 2

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

WORLDLINESS OR GODLINESS



Do you have one foot in the world and it's passing pleasures and lusts
and the other foot into "church things"? Is your mind filled with
desires other than Jesus? Do you feel more excited about the things in
this world than you do having a relationship with Jesus?

First off as a reminder, we are only on the earth a very short amount
of time. What are you doing with that time to spread God's love and
impact the world and leave a legacy even when you are long gone?

Do you find "religious" things boring? Maybe it is time for a "heart
check up" to see how your love meter for Jesus is. When you accept
Christ into your heart you are to serve Him where He has you. When you
go out to eat and decide to pray do you sort of "hold your head" like
you are not really praying so you will not be embarrassed? I heard
someone once call this the "headache prayer". In Mark 8:38 it tells us
to 'not be ashamed of Him'. Think about that and ask yourself if you
have ever been ashamed of Jesus. Then look up and read that entire
verse. What if your children turned their back on you acting like you
embarrassed them? Well imagine how Jesus must feel if you say you live
for Him then act ashamed.
1 Timothy 6:6(NIV) says 'Godliness with contentment is great gain.'
Does it make you happy to serve the Lord and read your Bible? Are you
drawn into worldly activities more than Godly activities? For
instance, if the Bible and People magazine were side by side in a
doctors office waiting area which would you tend to grab for first? Is
your "ashamed meter" going off? I am not saying People magazine is bad
but what does it do for you? You learn all about what is happening in
Hollywood but why does that even matter? You get the point. I
challenge you to use your doctors' office time by picking up the
Gideon's Bible, which is usually in most waiting areas, and read
Psalms or Proverbs while you wait for your appointment.

We are in the last days, just look around you. This is not to say
Jesus is coming back tomorrow but if He did what would you be doing
with your time? Nothing wrong with going to movies and such just do
not let the "world" consume and shape your life.

Romans 12:2(NIV) reminds us 'Do not conform anymore to the pattern of
this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you
will be able to test and approve what God's will is- His good,
perfect, and pleasing will.'

A new year is upon us and yet another opportunity to make sure Christ
is truly first and the world second.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus I love you. I confess at times I have let the world
influence me. I know I am to be different and set apart and shine for
you. Forgive me if I have ever acted embarrassed. Thank you for loving
me and forgiving me. In Jesus' name. Amen.
 
 

Monday, January 7, 2013

GOD'S WAITING ROOM




GOD'S WAITING ROOM

How many of you out there like to wait? I would venture to say not many. In this hurry up society most people want things NOW. Waiting is not an option. Often tempers flare if needs 
are not met in a nano second. Just kidding on that illustration of course but the point being some things take time. 

You cannot take a cake out of the oven before it is done baking or it will fall. You can not expect to get through rush hour in a major city like Atlanta in just a few moments. It takes time and patience. If you have ever done ceramics or pottery you are aware the piece is not complete until it is "fired" in a kiln. You cannot just take a wet lump of clay home. Often times when we pray and do not see instant results we may wonder why God is not hearing us. Maybe He is trying to say he needs time to do His perfect work in you. 

James 1:4(NKJV) says 'it let patience have its' perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.' Hebrews 10:36(KJV) says 'But you have need of patience that after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.'  When a farmer plants a seed it takes time for his crops to grow to full maturity. They have to receive nourishment from the soul, the rain, and the sun. You can not rush the process. 

When you go to the doctor often times waiting is necessary for your appointment and later for test results. You can not always have everything instantly just as if it were a microwave meal. It is a good trait to learn to be patient. Patient people do not fly off the handle and do or say things they regret later. Patience is one of the "fruits of the Spirit" found in Galatians 5:22-23.  

God can often help you grow in those "waiting rooms" of life. Why not ask Him to help you today?

PRAYER: Lord Jesus forgive me when I rush around and get frustrated when things don't happen NOW. I know good things take time. I know impatience can create many problems people often regret. Lord help me as I learn to be still in your waiting room. In Jesus' name. Amen. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

HE MAKES BEAUTIFUL THINGS OUT OF MESSES




Several years ago there was a book by the author Patsy Clairmont  entitled "God Uses Cracked Pots". Great title for a book about normal people with normal issues in life that aren't perfect but God uses them for His purposes. Some people who at one time have been the furthest away from God are now working mightily for his kingdom.  It is through these "cracks" or imperfections in life we often learn to grow closer to the Lord. Mistakes often teach us valuable lessons. One of the greatest illustrations I can think of is former Watergate insider, the late Chuck Colson,  who went to prison for several years as a result of his crimes and later started Prison Fellowship Ministries.

Sometimes it takes complete brokenness to get someone to see their need for Christ.  When many think God is being hard on them, maybe He in fact has you on His "potter's wheel" shaping you and molding you so you can be more effective for Him.

You may recall the verse in Romans 3:23 (NIV) which says 'All have sinned and fallen short of God's glory.' Don't  think you are beyond hope no matter what you have done. That is a lie from the pit of hell. He turns scars into stars.  From your mess He creates your "message". So no matter what, God can use you if only you will let Him. 

PRAYER: Lord I realize the enemy, Satan, is the one who lies to me to make me feel beyond redemption. I know Lord you are the great redeemer and came to set the captives free. You have forgiven my sins and remember them no more. For that I thank you. Help me lead a life pleasing unto you. In Jesus' name.Amen. 


Saturday, January 5, 2013

BURY THE PAST








Do you have a habit of thinking or worrying about the past? The past can not nor should not be resurrected. It is gone. We move on in life and learn from mistakes. If you confessed your sin then why not let it go and keep it buried? God forgets and forgives mess ups and sins so why can't we? It is because Satan is the "accuser of the brethren" ( see Revelation12:10) and tries to put guilt on you. Guilt is not from God. If you confessed it then as The Bible says 'go and sin no more.' ( see John 8:11).

Isaiah 43:18(NIV) tells us 'remember not the former things', so are you able to let the past with all of its' mistakes go and look ahead and know God has redeemed you and set you free? You can learn from your past but you need not dwell on it. Just like in the "love chapter" 1 Corinthians 13 in verse 5 it says 'love does not keep a record of wrongs'. That is great news! Remember it is only Satan who condemns you. If you have those feelings tell Satan to get behind you in Jesus' name.

Psalm 103:12(NIV) says 'As far as the East is from the West so far has He removed our transgressions from us'.

PRAYER: Thank you for forgiving my sins. My desire is to focus on day to day things and let things in the past be "lessons learned". I know I do not need to keep asking you to forgive me because you have. Thank you. In Jesus' name. Amen.


Friday, January 4, 2013

NO ONE IS RIGHTEOUS....NO NOT ONE!




NO ONE IS RIGHTEOUS..NO NOT ONE

How many of us have been guilty of judging others or pointing the finger at sinners when we in fact are sinners ourselves?  Do you beat up on "God's sheep" trying to come back to the fold? Do you classify sin as which one is despicable and the absolute worst?

There are churches out there that have a habit of "shooting their wounded". Just what gives us the right to classify sin? Some of those people who were the greatest in the Bible have had rough shady pasts. God can and does redeem. God can and does set free. God can and does
love you regardless of what you have done. God can and does heal the brokenhearted. God can and does set the sinner free.

In Isaiah 64:6(NIV) it says 'all of us become as one who is unclean. And all our righteous acts are like filthy rags. We all shrivel up like a leaf. And like the winds, our sins sweep us away.'  Just remember we all have messed up so do not get so high and mighty deciding which sin is better or worse than the other.  Let God be the judge. Romans 3:23( NIV) says 'All have sinned and fallen short of Gods' glory.'

As you begin a fresh new year here on the 4th day of January 2013 make it a point to stop judging others and and feeling that what you have done is not as bad as what someone else has done. It is your job to try to lead a righteous life. So go now and seek His face in 2013.

PRAYER: Father if I have every tried to act like a judge please forgive me. Forgive my self righteousness. Lord Jesus I want to be your servant and have a pure heart. Help me as I walk daily with you. In Jesus' name. Amen.