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.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

KEEP THE FAITH


Have you ever felt we are in the center of a culture war and the
Christian side is losing? That is what our enemy wants us to think. We
are truly in a battle of good and evil but if you read the end of the
Bible you know the "good guy" wins.

God is supreme. He will not be mocked by a corrupt government. He will
not be "redefined" as His word is yesterday, today, yes, forever
unchanging. He will not be ruled "unconstitutional" as He is God. Many
may try to ignore Him trying to defend their way of life but He is
still here and He represents truth and forgiveness for those who
repent of their sins.

I drive home the point allot in my writings of how important it is to
know the word of God for in it lies truth and the answers to many of
life's issues. God is so much bigger and powerful than puny mere men
who try to legislate Him away.

When we ignore him doing our own thing and listen to the lies of the
enemy, Satan, he is sad.

A good Bible verse for this modern "do my own thing" era is found in
the book of Romans chapter 12 verse two and it says simply '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.' In other words
you have to be a non conformist to things you know are not right. This
does not mean start fights but this means to speak up in love and do
not allow God's word to be mocked.

Galatians 6:7(NIV) says 'Do not be deceived. God can not be mocked for
whatever a mans sows that will he reap.'

Whose voice are you listening to today?

PRAYER: Today I pray for a soft pliable heart so that I do not become
desensitized to sins around me or in my own life. Keep my eyes opened
to your truth. Give me Holy boldness to speak the truth in love. In
Jesus' name, Amen.

Click on link for a powerful song.
http://youtu.be/MpWozyQ2QH4

Saturday, June 29, 2013

ATTITUDE OF PRAISE



Last Sunday evening no doubt most televisions  were tuned to the Discovery Channel to watch the amazing attempt of daredevil Nik Wallenda to walk the high wire across the Grand Canyon and without a net or a safety harness. Needless to say the 25 minutes or so it took Mr. Wallenda to successfully complete this harrowing task seemed long and brought cheers and sighs of relief from his family, onlookers, and to viewers at homes when he safely reached the other side.

Mr. Wallenda is a devout Christian and before he attempted his crossing of the canyon he was seen having prayer with Pastor Joel Osteen. Later during the duration of his very careful "stroll" across this wire with an "open mike" he was wearing, you could hear him constantly in an attitude of prayer and praise. He would say things like "Thank you Jesus for your strength. Thank you Jesus for calming the wind. Help me relax Jesus. Praise you Jesus. Thank you for your beautiful creation. " I loved it! His praise and talking to God went on the entire time he crossed. What a testimony to millions of viewers! 

You don't need to be in a dangerous situation to cry out to God but you can praise and talk to Him all the time. When you do, wait and see if your fears start to melt away. Psalm 113:3(NIV) says '
From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the LORD is to be praised.' Psalm 18:3(NIV) says '
I called to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and I have been saved from my enemies.'

In Proverbs 18:10 we are told  'The name of the Lord is a fortified tower, the righteous run to it and are safe.'
You can call on Jesus who is worthy to be praised and you will be saved from your enemies. His name is mighty and powerful. Don't wait till you are doing something dangerous but call on Him each and every day. He will see you through.

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for your word. Thank you Lord for your protection. Thank you Lord that your word does not return void. Thank you for being my shield. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Note: Go to www.nikwallenda.com for more on his faith

Friday, June 28, 2013

ARE YOU PASSIONATE FOR THE THINGS OF CHRIST?


There are many attacks of the things of the Lord these days. These are areas where it clearly states in the Holy Bible they are wrong or an abomination. Yet are we believers upset or do we simply say "God is in control" and go about our daily life? It is my humble opinion that we should be a little upset at Satan for making so many believers complacent about sin takingaz over and changing our wonderful country. "Well this is 2013 and things change" but guess what? God's word never changes. Hebrews 13:8(NIV) says 'Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, yes, and forever.' In Malachi 3:6 it says 'I am the Lord, I do not change.' Pretty clear wouldn't you say?
We are truly in a battle for our very souls and the soul of what used to be a God fearing nation. Do we, who know what is wrong, just sit on the sidelines? Of course all of us need to be in prayer. And we are not to hate people who are being led to believe Satan's lies. History shows clearly what happens when a nation forgets God. Think of the Roman Empire for instance. How about Sodom and Gomorrah?

Psalm 119:89 tells us 'Forever oh Lord your word is settled in heaven.' Deuteronomy 12:32(NLT) tells us 'so be careful to obey all the commands I give you.Be careful not to add anything to them or subtract anything from them.'

Are churches preaching "feel good sermons" or are they out there on the battle lines equipping their people with the truth found in God's word?

God can heal. God can change. God can deliver. God can set the captive free. What are we captivated by today in 2013? Even in government we are condoning sin and passing laws to protect it. It indeed is a sad time. But there is hope.

First believers need to be in an attitude of love and prayer. Next don't just give Jesus lip service but get excited about following him. In Revelation 3:16(NIV) it says 'And because you are lukewarm, I will spit you out of my mouth.' It is not too late. 2 Chronicles 7:14(NIV) reminds us 'if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.' Think about what that verse really truly means.

Don't be so captivated by the things of this world that you lose your passion for truth and the Lord.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus I thank you today for another day you have given me to be on the battle lines for you. Every where I go I know there are hurting people. Help me be tuned in to ways I can share Jesus' love and truth in the world I live in. In Jesus' name.Amen.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

MORNING HEADLINES!!

"Extra, extra, read all about it. Jesus loves you! Jesus can and does forgive! Jesus wipes the sinners slate clean!" You were hoping for something more exciting and national perhaps? Jesus is the BEST news ever! If we read our Bibles before our newspapers each day our life would probably be filled with much more peace.

Jesus and God's word are indeed good news. The Bible is the best thing ever for helping you deal with situations that may come your way. When you make time to read the Bible each day just see if your day isn't better.

When we "know" His good news then we are to go out and spread it around to others. We are like seed planters. In the book of Isaiah 61:1(NIV) we are told that '
The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.'
Are you able to help out spreading this good news to others? I once heard someone say we may be the only "Bible" some people may ever "read". Knowing that, what would others learn from you if they "read" you? That is your question to ponder for the day.


The best "news" ever is found in John 3:16(NIV) which most people are probably familiar with even if they know no other scripture verse. It says 'For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but will have eternal life.'

Now that is the best headline ever wouldn't you say?

PRAYER: Today Lord I thank you for the "good news" found not in the newspaper but in the word of God. Forgive me when I have neglected it. I know I can not have victory in life without you by my side. In Jesus' name. Amen.





Wednesday, June 26, 2013

MILESTONES IN LIFE


Life is a celebration! Birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, and other various accomplishments. Today for me marks my 1000th writing of God's Lemonade Stand and I could not have kept going without both the grace of God and encouragement from my friends and readers. I indeed am grateful! Milestones of all sorts are very special!

God gives you the staying power to complete a task whether it is the loss of weight, running a race, finishing a project, celebrating another year of marriage, or working for years to be able to maybe retire and take on something else waiting to be done.

As a runner I used to keep track of my miles both when I was in the Army and as a civilian. After a certain mileage I would get a reward of sorts to keep me plugging in on the task of staying fit. The local YMCA gave me a "run for your life" tee shirt after reaching my milestone of the initial 50 miles. In the US Army there was a voluntary running program where I received certificates when reaching 50, 100, 250, 500, 1000 and so on. It was fun to set a goal and get rewarded.

What are you striving for in life? Is God part of the equation to help you get there? Maybe it is even being faithful to read your Bible and try to get entirely through it or maybe to set the goal of a daily quiet time.

Let me leave you with a couple verses to encourage you on your journey no matter what it is!

Isaiah 40:31(KJV) 'Those that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.'

Hebrews 12:1-2(NIV)'Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverancethe race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.'

Go for your goal today!! Give God the glory!

PRAYER: Father thank you for helping me persevere through tasks in life. It is with your strength I can get through things. I need not compare myself with others for your have a special purpose and goal for me. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Click link and praise God.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

THE FLY AWAKENED ME

Have you heard of people getting messages from God in dreams or other ways? Well a couple weeks ago a common housefly woke me up by continually landing on my face. It was very annoying. After this happened numerous times and many failed attempts to fall back to sleep, a Bible verse came to me about overcoming evil and good and evil being in the world. I can not recall the exact verse, but it prompted me to write on good and evil as when I finally got up I was thinking "overcome evil with good." I can not recall ever waking up to a Bible verse like that before. It indeed was rather bizarre.
So I can thank that annoying house fly for giving me an idea. The housefly itself reminded me of the pesky annoyance of bad junk in our lives. It kind of reminds me of Hebrews 12:1(NIV) which says '
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.' Some versions use the word "beset" in place of entangle, but that word "entangle" really is a word picture. A person can get all tangled up in sin until they are trapped. Think of being in a jungle or in a bunch of weeds and with no clear path how easy it would be to get stuck or "entangled" in a the underbrush.

I have prayed the prayer before that Jesus would help "detangle" a situation someone was in as only Jesus can, and I have seen Him do it. I believe is was my friend Stephanie who I first heard coin this creative word. Jesus can indeed "detangle" a person from a trap that the enemy has laid for them.


Do you need a fly to wake you up to give you a reminder about something? Can you recognize and run away from evil or sin that has kept you "tangled" up? Turn to God. He is the great "detangler" and indeed can help you run your race to win.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus I know the enemy sets traps he wants me to fall into it. I will keep my eyes on you so I am not tripped up. Keep my eyes wide own to the schemes of the evil one as I focus only on you. In Jesus' name. Amen.



Click on link for awesome song of praise:

http://youtu.be/BJ4jOX6f_1s

Monday, June 24, 2013

DON'T DISOWN JESUS

 
Why is it that some people get ashamed of their belief and faith in Jesus? Depending on who they are with they may or may not speak out about something. Maybe they do not want to "rock the boat" or want to try to fit in. For instance, perhaps you are in church or a church setting and wonderful praise and worship music is playing and you feel like lifting your hands in the air but then "what would others think"? Someone asks you to go to a movie you know has bad things in it but you go anyway. Maybe being 'religious' is just not "cool".
Sometimes being a Christian in todays' world is like a fish trying to swim upstream. The "flow" of popular culture seems to be pushing on you so you can not get ahead. There is a saying I heard once that said "what is popular is not always right and what is right is not always popular". Hmmm. Think on that for a moment. There is allot of truth in that statement, especially in 2013!
When this life you are living is over and you die, what is really going to matter? Have you lived your life to help bring others to Christ?Do you hide your "Christian light" under a basket since you are somewhat embarrassed? Do you simply check the "church block" off each week and live like you want to live?
The Bible is a powerful book yet many rarely pick it up. You have choices of what to read in the doctor's office, most of which include a Gideon's Bible, yet maybe finding out the latest Hollywood gossip is more interesting. It is not my purpose to guilt you but to make you think about your walk with the Lord. Have you truly asked Him to come into your life or maybe "just" joined a church?
Maybe now is the time to insure Jesus is Lord of your life and then not let this world push you into its' mold.
Mark 8:38(NIV) says 'If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation then the Son of man will be ashamed of them when He comes in His Father's glory, with the holy angels.'
PRAYER:Lord Jesus forgive me if I have ever passed by the opportunity to share your love with others. Forgive me if I have ever been ashamed when I should have spoken out. I choose to let my light shine. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Click on link below and worship God in song.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

DARK WORLD


The world we live in today is filled with darkness. By that I mean what is good is being called evil and what is bad is being called good. Messed up indeed wouldn't you say? Desensitization has occurred to many believers at a rapid pace. You see something or hear something enough you sort of cave in to the "dark side" which is ruled by Satan. When you start to believe the media is more truthful than God's Holy word, the Bible, then there is a problem. When you spend more time on modern culture than getting to know Jesus better that is a warning sign that you need to maybe take some time to renew your spirit by reading the word of God.

How do you dispel darkness? You turn on a light! We believers are to be those lights in a dark world around us. The Bible says in Matthew 5:14-15( NIV) 'You are the light of the world, a town built on a hill that can not be hidden. Neither do people like a lamp and put it under a bowl instead they put it in a stand and it gives light to everyone in the house.' Imagine for a moment you are a huge light bulb. Your light will not shine forth if it is under something. As a believer we are to light the darkness around us not cave into it. Oh sure there may be a struggle on the way but God is with you helping you to shine bright for Him. Just call on Him.

PRAYER: Today and every day let me not hide my light under a basket but let me shine for you in the darkness that surrounds me. A a believer I know it is important I not be like the world but stand out shining the way for others to come to you. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Click on link below for a wonderful song of praise.
http://youtu.be/CVqR6kTu8lE

Saturday, June 22, 2013

THE MARRIAGE

 
One year ago today, my answers to 28 years of praying came to fruition when our younger son was joined in Holy matrimony to his best friend and soul mate. It was a wonderful Christian wedding and an exciting day for not only them but for family and friends who were in attendance to celebrate with them. Weddings are indeed a time of joy and celebration especially when families like each other and vows are taken seriously. It is an anticipated event joining a man and a woman as one in the eyes of God, even though society may try to redefine it. It is a commitment and a vow not to be entered into flippantly.

With weddings we think of love as well. What better way to celebrate love than when you go to a Christian wedding. At times this is a great time for those already married to think about what marriage really means. It is till death do you part with no escape clauses. I have readers who have been in failed marriages and it is not my intent to guilt you in any way. God can and does forgive and at times the divorce may not have been your fault.
Love indeed is a good thing. 1 Corinthians chapter 13, which I am copying from the NIV in it's entirety, is the definition of love. Read it out loud today whether you are married or single.
'If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in partand we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes,what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.'
Love like this verses says even to your friends. Love like God. God is love. Is there someone you need to show this type of love to today?
PRAYER: Lord I thank you for the gift of love. I know I am to love others with your love. I am not to hate or be ugly but to be an imitation of your love wherever I go. I will seek always to love like you love no matter if others love me back. In Jesus' name. Amen!
Click on link for a song of love.
http://youtu.be/3rPvrXoIVl0

Friday, June 21, 2013

SNACKS THROUGHOUT THE DAY

The other day when I wrote about SNACKS VERSUS A MAIN COURSE one reader said she knew what I was getting at but said she liked little snacks of nourishment throughout her day too. She had a valid point. Sometimes healthy snacks are good throughout the day. I thought about that for a moment and said "Yes that is true. We need to be thinking of Christ throughout our day." By this I mean we need to start the day with prayer and throughout the day to think of Him.

You just do not "gobble him up" in one sitting on Sunday and that is that till the following week but you seek out His nourishment throughout the week on a daily basis and sometimes several times throughout your day.
For instance when you are in your car you can be singing praises or praying. Obviously you would not shut your eyes to pray but you can "talk" to God wherever you are. Remain in an "attitude" of prayer. You could have a good praise and worship station on your radio in the background while at home. Try to stay focused on good things and keep your thoughts "above".
Obviously Satan will attempt to throw you curve balls to get you messed up but resist Him. Try to get in a regular habit of taking the first part of each day to have a quiet time. It may take some creative scheduling on your part especially if you have children at home or have a job to go to. When you start doing this ,wait and see if you don't start feeling lifted up in your spirit. Enjoy "snacking" on Jesus throughout your day each and every day.
Colossians 3:1-2(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. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.'
PRAYER: Lord Jesus I choose this day to stay in an attitude of praise and thanksgiving. I know when I sing your praises the enemy has to flee. Thanks for the freedom I have to read and own a Bible. Forgive me for neglecting it at times. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

YOUR NAME ON THE DOOR







What is it you do in life? This is often a question people ask when they meet someone. Seems like status of a great job or a title is where many get their worth. If your answer is "Oh I am just a stay home mom" stop putting yourself down. That job is better than any fancy gold name plate on a office door anytime. That job holds the future for little ones being raised by godly parents. As I used to say "I am raising leaders for the future" and indeed you are!  Now my answer is "I write" and often I feel bad that it is not a big title but in the big scheme of things I am okay with it now. What you do for the kingdom of God will last whether it is raising children to serve the Lord or being a good witness for Christ in the workplace.  


Many people do all they can to get "to the top" as it has prestige and offers many perks. If you are in a career field with prestige first of all be thankful as God has given you the abilities to study hard and get to the top. If you are not in a job like this do not be jealous of those who are. Be thankful and happy just where God has placed you in life. If your job is what the world says is worthy of a "gold name plate" on the door be humble. Do not think of yourself as better.

Matthew 23:12(NIV) says 'For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.'  If you are blessed to be "at the top" just remember how you got there. If you have not do not be jealous of those who have.

Philippians 2:3-4(NIV) says 'Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.'  Romans 12:15(NIV) says 'Rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn'. 

Remember our purpose as Christians here on this earth is to humbly serve him and reach others for Christ. Let me leave you with your Christian job description found in Colossians 3:23(NIV) which says 'Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.' Now go serve Him whether you have a name on your door or not!

PRAYER: Lord I thank you for where you have me in my life. I thank you and am content just where I am. Forgive me if I have ever been jealous of others or ever been discontent. I know you have a plan for my life. In Jesus' name.Amen.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

PEACE FOR THE INTERNET BABIES



Odd title I know, but this is about teaching your future children and grandchildren and school children to learn to 'be still and know that He is God'.(Psalm 46:10). Today's babies being born are in a generation that has never not known electronics and staying connected. Call me old fashioned but there is a time and place to be "wired" and a time and place to be still. In my humble opinion I feel children need to develop a habit of learning how to be quiet and still.

I can recall in 1994 when we got our first PC(personal computer) all the codes you had to type in to get it to turn on. But todays' little ones are being born into a very different world. Not only will they never know what is was like to not have a internet connection but they are bombarded on all sides by an immoral world. The culture is pumping out their garbage on television and through other forms of media. Truly my parents job was much easier as the television was actually moral.

It  is going to be a parents job to guide their little ones in the right way not caving into peer and societal pressure in raising them to be calm, cool, and collected or in other words, peaceful and able to sit still.

There is a verse in Proverbs 29:15(NIV) that says 'A  rod and a reprimand impart wisdom but a child left to his own way disgraces his mother.' Have we not all witnessed out of control children whose parents let them get away with all sorts of things? I recall an incident in the military chapel we attended back in  the early 90's where a little toddler spit on me. Yes you heard me right. You would think of all the people military parents would not allow such a thing. The mother simply said (name changed) "now Rodney stop that" and the child did it again. No intervention by the dad and no swat on the fanny. I was totally dumbfounded. I would hate to see this child today if he went through life without any form of discipline or correction. We are to train children in the way they should go it says in Proverbs 22:6, not the other way around.

So back to the title, these "internet  generation babies" are going to need to be taught right and wrong according to God's word and are going to have to learn that they do not always get their way or they do not always get pacified with an electronic toy. Peace is learned by being still and quiet and getting alone to pray. Some of we adults need to learn that concept as well. It is good for our souls. 

There is a verse in Isaiah 30:15 that says 'in quietness and confidence is our strength'. Is there something you need to be doing to learn to be quiet and to develop this skill in your children?

PRAYER: Father in heaven I thank you today for being able to get alone and pray. I know Satan is out to make me feel like I need noise and distracts me with busyness of life. I choose this day to make time to be still and get alone with you. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

SAFE FROM DANGER

 
Do you and can you really trust God to take care of you and your family? Prayers are said so it is at that point we need to let go and let faith kick in. Our arch enemy, Satan, loves to torment us with concern, fretting, fear, and worry. Do not allow him to steal your peace and faith in God. He is not worth the extra gray hairs.
There may be some readers who do not hear much about the concept of "spiritual warfare" but we indeed are in a battle of good and evil, right and wrong, and for our very souls. Scripture and prayer are powerful tools we have to use against Satan. Remember in John 10:10(NIV) we are told 'The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. I came that you might have life and have it more abundantly.'
Deception is rampant in our world today. Modern culture is even entrapping well meaning believers who are being captivated and deceived by him. Do not let it happen! Use the word of God as your greatest tool to stop him in his tracks! Tell him to get his stinking little hands off you and your family and be sure to say, "In Jesus name" as there is power in that name.
I thought today I would go over Psalm 91 as a way to sear it in your brain to recall when you tend to want to start fearing. The author of fear is not God. It is one of Satan's tools to try to defeat us. We have victory in Jesus Christ so remind Satan of that when he starts to come against you. Perhaps you need to maybe read it out loud and personalize it with a name to make it hit home.
Here goes!
'Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked. If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the cobra you will trample the great lion and the serpent." Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him, I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, and show him my salvation.'

Try to recite those verses out loud and see if you don't feel a stronger faith inside of you.
PRAYER: Today Lord I choose to know and believe you are my strength and I have no reason to fear. I trust in you Lord and I have power because of you to defeat the enemy. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Click on link below for a powerful song of praise and worship.

Monday, June 17, 2013

WORRY! WHO ME? NO WAY!




How many of us say we have the "worry monster" thing beat then you catch
yourself wondering what someone thinks of you or second guess a
decision you make or start fearing something? I know I have then I
have to say "Becky. Stop it. You know God is taking care of you so
just pray!"

It is easy to slip into this "worry mode" if we are not careful. Our
enemy, Satan, is waiting to take advantage of our weak points. Do not
let him. Stand up and say to him "Devil I have had enough of your puny
schemes. I am strong in the strength of the Lord and according to Isaiah 54:17(NIV) 'no
weapon formed against me shall prosper.' So Devil you can leave me alone right now!" Wacky you say? Not really.

We have God's word as our authority. God is greater than the devil. The enemy is out to torture us and to try to get us off track for the Lord. He knows where we are vulnerable and will keep attacking because he knows how we react. Why not surprise the devil and quote scripture to him?
When you are tempted to start worrying cry out to God and start reading scripture. Start praising the name of Jesus. The enemy has to flee at the sound of His name. We have to get serious about walking with the Lord and taking authority over bad junk in our lives or that of a family member. Worrying does not bring you closer to God but trusting Him does.
The Bible is not there to be a coffee table ornament but it is to be used and studied. If the enemy can get us too busy to use it or make us think Sunday is enough then we remain in the same rut with the same issues hanging over our heads. Now is the time to get powerful and serious about walking with the Lord. Start reading in the book of John in the Old Testament for starters. 
1 Peter 5:7(NIV) tells us to 'cast our cares on Him for He cares for us'. Can you "cast" that worry away? You say, "I am just a worrier". Now is the time to stop saying that and pick up the "sword of the spirit" and instead know that Jesus can help you. Worry is not from God. It is not a fruit of the spirit mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23. We can overcome this and be filled with peace instead. Would you like that? Cry out to God. Do not allow worry to become a stronghold in your life.
PRAYER: Today Lord I choose peace over worry. I know worrying does not change a situation but only keeps me tied up in "knots" and I know also that Satan loves to see children of God all weak and worried. Now is the time I choose to be strong and trust in you. I know you have a plan greater than I can imagine and I need to trust in you. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Click link below to start your week off praising Jesus.


Sunday, June 16, 2013

DADDY ARE YOU THERE??

 
Today we celebrate our dad's on Father's Day.Some people may not have had the greatest dad relationship or had an absent dad or a broken family but our dad's our special both biological and adopted dads. Seems like moms get all the attention, but hey, without dads there are no moms. Profound isn't it?

A dad and a mom are crucial in raising a child and some may have had to conquer being both through no fault of their own. Dads we salute you. We thank you for working hard to provide for the family and at times not even being appreciated. We thank you for putting up with our rebellion. We thank you or loving us when we turned our backs on you.

If you have been hurt by your father in whatever way do not harbor that in your heart. Ask God to heal your wounded heart and forgive you dad even if not in person but do it or perhaps he is deceased. You will not truly be able to live a life of peace and joy and walk with the Lord if you can not let go and forgive.

God is our Father in heaven. Earthly dads have big shoes to fill trying to be the spiritual leader of the house. If you are a dad reading this are you teaching your children about God or leaving it up to the church? Deuteronomy 6:6-7(NIV) says 'These commandments I give you this day are to be upon your hearts. Impress them upon your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.' Also in Ephesians 5:5-6(NIV) says pertaining to your wife 'Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up to her, to make her holy cleansing her with washing of water through the word.'
Men out there I interpret that to mean you should be praying for your wife and pray scripture over her.

In the Bible God is called our Abba Father or daddy. Men have a big responsibility in trying to be more Christlike in leading your own life and that of your family. James 1:27(NIV) is a good verse to leave with and it says '
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.'
Today go out and celebrate the gift of your dad. Forgive him for not being perfect and keep praying for him.


PRAYER: Lord Jesus I thank you for my dad. He is to be honored not just on this special day but on every day. Help me to forgive if needed and to show love, honor, and respect. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

BEAUTY IN A JAR?

 
The other day I visited my local "beauty supply store". Billions of dollars are spent by women, and sometimes men, to make themselves appear gorgeous and presentable to those around them. Here I was joining in on spending money on some miracle cream guaranteed to do this or that. It made me think of the verse in Ecclesiastes 1:2(NASB) which says 'Vanity of vanities, says the preacher, vanity of vanities all is vanity.'
There is some truth to that when it comes to our outward appearance. Aren' t people going to like us if we do not put mascara on or wear after shave? Unfortunately in our world appearances are important so this trip to make ourselves beautiful continues.
Our appearance can be marred by disease, war, vehicle accident, strokes, burns, and accidents. If we only place value on our outer shell the what happens if you become scarred? You are still you. Now I am not saying go out gain weight and dress like a slob but only saying we need to concentrate on our "inner self" which ultimately is more important.
The Bible has something to say about this too. Man is the one who judges our "outside" appearance. What is in our hearts is much more important.1 Samuel 16:7(NIV) says '

But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart." Aren't we glad there's no beauty contest to be accepted by God? Sometimes "imperfect" people in the eyes of humans have much to offer us. I think of those with a mental illness or Down's syndrome who are often wrongly judged.
Matthew 7:1(NIV) warns us about judging others. It says 'don't judge or you too will be judged'. 1 Peter 3:3-4(NIV) is an excellent verse to commit to memory. It says '
Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self,the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.' Sounds good to me, how about you?
What do you say? Go out today and be beautiful for the Lord and shine your beauty of the inner man around to others.

PRAYER: Lord there is much to learn about trying to be beautiful on the inside. I confess at times I have put more focus on my "outward shell" and not enough on the spirit inside of me. I choose today to start working harder on developing inner beauty by reading your word and living for you. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Note: Below are four websites to check out of seemingly imperfect people who conquered what the world would make fun of them for. Check them out and be inspired!


Friday, June 14, 2013

FAITH IN THE FATHER NOT THE FLAG


Today in the United States of America we observe Flag Day. In 1877 The Stars and Stripes were adopted as the official flag of this country. It is believed flag day originated in 1885. (I have included a link below with a little history.)

The flag means a good deal to many Americans especially those who have served their country in the Armed Forces particularly in hostile environments. The flag stands for liberty and freedom. It is my opinion that Americans should not wait till the next "911" but should display the flag proudly at all times. Why wait till disaster and death occurs to display the national colors?

As great as the flag is we are not to put it above God and serving the Lord. We in America are truly blessed to live in a nation of democracy and freedom where everyone gets a fair shake to succeed. God indeed has blessed us as long as we follow His ways. Just how long these blessings will occur is up to we as a people. Just saying "God Bless America" does nothing if a person's heart is not behind that statement.

Psalm 33:12(NIV) says 'Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He chose or His inheritance.' Today hopefully you will stop a moment and ponder what the flag of these United States stands for and the many lives lost securing freedoms. Never take it for granted as freedoms can be taken away. Stop today and give thanks to God for your many blessings.

There are many nations who do not enjoy freedom. Never forget to always thank God for it and do your part to help freedom not be taken away. We indeed are grateful to be living under the red. white, and blue!

PRAYER:Today I pause and say thank you Lord for the Christian men who founded this great land. Thank you for liberty and justice for all. We are indeed blessed because of you Lord. Forgive us for not speaking up when evil men and women try to take away freedoms that people fought and died for. In Jesus' name.Amen.
Click link for an awesome song of praise:
http://youtu.be/IhF2W3ajrvw

Additional link is the history of flag day for those interested.
http://www.usflag.org/flag.day.html

Thursday, June 13, 2013

SNACK OR MAIN COURSE?


 Would you rather have a yummy main course meal full of wonderful things to eat or just a simple snack? Snacks are great but we need more to grow, survive, and thrive.

In your walk with The Lord do you treat Him like a snack, main course, or are you dieting? By this I mean do you crave God's word or do you barely "eat" enough to consider it a meal? Do you fast or starve yourself from your spiritual nourishment or are you hungry for it on a regular, hopefully daily, basis. Maybe you are a "spiritual anorexic"?

If you ate only one meal a week your body would soon become weak and sick. Similarly if we partake of God's words in the Bible for only a few minutes a week do you suppose you would have the spiritual strength for the battles ahead in your life? The answer is of course "no". Why is it in life when people get busy their schedules rarely include a daily quiet time? It should be right up there with showering, brushing your teeth, and dressing. A quiet time is a "spiritual dressing" of sorts. Satan convinces many well meaning people it is a little overboard or fanatical to do more than just that "sacred" hour on Sundays.

Would you have friends long if you did not give them time? Of course not. You get to know people by spending time with them. Jesus wants you to want to spend time with Him. If there is no desire maybe you need Him in your heart.

Psalm 107:9(NIV) says 'For He satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.' Matthew 5:6(NIV) may be a familiar passage for some readers but have you really given it much thought. 'Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be filled.'

Are you ready to feast on Jesus?
PRAYER: Lord I confess at times I have been too busy for you. I go through my day and at times give you little thought. Forgive me. I will no longer allow Satan to distract me with other seemingly more important things. Nothing is more important than reading the word of God and praying. In Jesus' name.Amen.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

YOUR UNIFORM


Many jobs, to include those done by volunteers, require a person to wear a uniform while performing their duties. When you wear it you represent the company or organization represented by it.

I have worn several uniforms in my life such as Girl Scouts, High School Marching Band, Red Cross Volunteer, Hallmark Employee, Armed Forces, Historical Re enactor, and Airline Employee to name a few. Each time you put on that uniform you are representing the company you work for and hopefully in an outstanding way!

As a believer some like to wear crosses around their necks or maybe a Christian tee shirt. If you do this are you a good example for Christ as others see that you identify with Him. Even if we do not wear an outward symbol of our love for Jesus we still need to remember that we represent Him wherever we go. He lives inside of you if you asked Him into your heart. Are the things you say and do a good reflection on the body of Christ or do you bring shame to Him? Something to think about. Does the lifestyle you lead bring glory and honor to His name or do you need to turn from something holding you back?


1 Peter 1:16(NIV) reminds us 'Be holy as I am Holy.' Are you living a Holy life set apart for Christ or is something in your life holding you back from fully embracing a life devoted to Christ? Just remember if you name the name of Jesus you represent Him wherever you go. Are you representing Him well or turning others away from Him?
2 Corinthians 5:29(NIV) says 'We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God.' What is it that is keeping you from representing Jesus in a great way?


PRAYER: Today Lord I choose to lift your name up by my actions wherever I go. You know the struggles I have Lord and I ask you to help me defeat any strongholds in my life the enemy has set up to bring me down. I resist Satan as I a a child of God. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

A SIMPLE SMILE


Look around you! Is there anyone you see who could use a smile? Often all it takes is a smile to lift someone's spirit. Go about your day and note the looks on people's faces. Maybe some are legitimately "down" but others just are seemingly sad. It takes very little effort to smile at someone. Such a small gesture could truly brighten a person's day.

Why do we go around frowning anyway? Do you yourself feel joyful? Psalm 28:7(NIV) says 'The Lord is my strength and my shield my heart trusts in Him and He helps me. My heart leaps for joy and with my song I praise Him.'

If we are to try to emulate Christ I am pretty certain He is full of joy. The enemy of our souls, Satan, is the author of all things bad and he is a joy stealer and a counterfeit. He will lie to you to make you think certain wrong things are right and fill you with false happiness. Only though Jesus and truth is their real joy. Psalm 16:11(NIV) says 'You make known to me the path of life and you will fill me with joy in your presence.with eternal pleasures at your right hand.'

So do you feel joy in your soul and can you share that through your smile with those around you?

PRAYER: Today Lord I thank you for another day of life. I thank you for all the blessings in my life. I thank you for joy only you can give. I choose to walk in joy today. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Monday, June 10, 2013

WAITING, WAITING, WAITING






Seems like much of life is about waiting. Waiting for the bus. Waiting for a baby to be born. Waiting for test results. Waiting for a doctor appointment. Waiting to hear back after a job interview. Waiting for our garden to grow so we have vegetables to eat. Waiting for a plane to arrive at the airport. Waiting for traffic at a stoplight. Waiting for a cake to get done we are baking.

It is evident it is necessary to be patient while we are waiting. In your prayer life you may have prayed and prayed and then prayed some more and are tired of waiting for a answer.  Waiting is part of life. Here in America we may be a little overboard on the impatience meter since we are used to instant results.

Patience is a "fruit of the Spirit" which needs to be exercised more and more. I often have heard we should not pray for patience as God may send "tests" our way till we develop it.

Are you patient or do you fall apart when things don't happen like you
think they should? Most people admit they do not like to wait. It is good to practice learning patience as it will greatly enhance the quality of your life and others around you.


Galatians 5:22-23 tells us 'But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy,
peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self
control, against such things there is no law.'

PRAYER: Lord God I want to thank you for some of the trials in my life
for I know they helped me to learn patience. I want this "fruit" in my
life. In Jesus' name. Amen.









Sunday, June 9, 2013

DISCIPLINED?


Discipline and self control are two things that go hand in hand. You need discipline in many  areas of your life.

Let's say you are a student, you would need to discipline yourself to study. If you are trying to lose weight you need discipline to eat right and get to the gym. If you are addicted to something you need discipline to overcome the addiction. Young adults starting out on their own need to have financial discipline to build up a savings account for emergencies and their future. When you are angry or upset you have to use discipline and self control to not spout off and start a fight.  These are  just a few examples.

Where in your life do you need to improve your discipline? The United States military is a great place to learn discipline. Some of my military readers  know the rigors of training and things they just do not tolerate in the armed forces. You have to be disciplined in order to be effective in war time.

Are you disciplined in your spiritual life? Do you regularly spend time with God reading His word and praying? Why is it many feel Sunday,for one hour, is quite enough? How can we grow to be more like Christ if we are not practicing His presence in all areas of life?

1 Timothy 4:8(NIV) says 'For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life that is to come.'

Does Jesus have first place in your life? If not what do you need to do to get disciplined for a godly life?

PRAYER: Today Lord I will ignore the devils' attempts to get me to busy or distracted to spend time with you. Help me Lord discipline myself to re- do my daily schedule to make sure I give you quality time. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

WORRIER OR WARRIOR?


Worry is a bad disease. It is a compulsion. Are there things you can not get out of your mind? The enemy of our souls, Satan, loves worriers. If he can get you to not trust God and to doubt that your prayers are heard then he has  you in his clutches. I must admit I say I do not worry, and that is true in many cases,  but then I start obsessing over what I did or said to so and so, therefore I am doing what? Worrying!

The best way to not worry is to stay in a attitude of prayer and praise. Get your mind under spiritual discipline. Do not start dwelling on bad stuff and "what if's" as it will make you go nutty. Purpose in your heart that you will pray then let go and let God take control. Things in life will happen. Trials and tests will come. It is how we respond to these that counts. Worrying does not change anything but it just gets you fixated on something you can do nothing about.

Matthew 6:26(NIV) says 'Look at the birds of the air. They do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than them?' the answer is "yes". Verse 27 of that same chapter goes on to say 'Can any of you by worrying add a single hour to his life?'  So why do we do it? 

You have to discipline your thought life. The way to do that is to make prayer and Bible reading a daily HABIT.  Getting your mind set on the word of God sets it on heavenly things. 2 Corinthians5:10(NASB) says 'We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. Picture that if you will! Every thought captive for Christ. Renewing your mind daily on the word and giving your "issues" over to God our burden bearer. 

What is it you are worrying about right now? Are you able to start being a daily prayer warrior and let Jesus give you peace?

PRAYER: Today Lord I choose to be at peace. Forgive me for wrong thinking. Forgive me for not meditating on your word when I start to get caught up in worry. I trust you Lord with me and my loved ones. Thank you for hearing my prayers. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Friday, June 7, 2013

BIG PROBLEMS? BIGGER GOD!




What kind of problems and concerns are weighing on your mind and heart today? Financial troubles? A wayward child? Loss of a job? Potential loss of a job? Betrayal by a friend? Whatever it is my friend know that God is bigger and mightier than Satan and your problems. 

In Psalm 40:11-12(NLT) says ' Do not withhold your mercy from me  Lord;  may your love and faithfulness always protect me. For troubles without number surround me; my sins have overtaken me, I can not see. They are more than the hairs of my head, and my heart fails within me.' 
Sometimes a situation may seem so huge you get overwhelmed and start conjuring up things in your mind that may happen. This goes back to the devotion on worry. We can not allow Satan to hold us captive with fear and concerns. Our God is a big God and no problem is too big for Him to handle. You have to believe that. 

James 1:2-3(NIV) reminds us 'Consider it all joy brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.'  All of us could probably use a good dose of persevering. When you go "through" trials you know they will eventually end. 

What is it that is bothering you today? Can you trust God to see you through with only strength He provides? 

PRAYER: Today Lord I choose to let you handle my burdens. I often fear for things that have not even happened. I know when  I do this I enable Satan to capture my thoughts. My choice is to demonstrate your perfect peace in a storm. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

MARKETING GIMMICKS

Have you ever heard the saying "if something seems too good to be true
it probably is." Advertising giants prey, it seems, on glowing words
and fancy packaging. It is not always women who get sucked into this
trap as men can fall victim to sleek ads as well. One thing I always
try to remember to ask myself is "Want or need" or in other words do you really need what it is someone is trying to sell. The shopping networks on television have non stop
"too good to be true" ads. It takes determination and self control to resist these sales pitches.

Satan is a good one at throwing things at you too and making you feel like nothing bad will happen or no one is going to find out. He is a trickster and a deceiver. He wraps sin in pretty packages and does not include in these packages what to do in case of an emergency, or in case of a life led astray.
2 Corinthians 11:14(NIV) says 'And no wonder for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.' He lures you then traps you in a web of sin. In order to break free it is necessary to know the word of God and claim its' promises such as in Isaiah 54:17(NKJV) which says 'No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment,You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, And their righteousness is from Me,” Says the Lord.'
Isaiah 5:20(NLT) says 'What sorrow for those who say that evil is good and good is evil, that dark is light and light is dark, that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter.'
Are you discerning and wise or easily led into sin traps? Start today and make it a practice to start your day with prayer and Bible reading asking God to go before you and make your path straight.
PRAYER: Lord I thank you for convicting me of sin in my life. Forgive me Lord when I have allowed Satan to enter my thoughts. I know my true strength and power to resist is from you and you alone. In Jesus' name. Amen.