Blessed……

As I was reading Joyce Meyer’s Everyday Life magazine today, I came across an article that caught my attention, “Forced Child Labor, Life Inside a Sri Lankan Brick Factory.” There was a young thirteen year old who worked ten hour days along with her parents making bricks all day, out of red clay. A common product used by many without truly understanding the “history” if you will of what goes in to having a product made. I can honestly say that when I go to any Home Improvement Store, the last thing I think about is, ” I wonder whose lives were affected by the manufacturing of this brick? Another thing I never think of. As I continued to read this story it saddened my heart. One that those conditions are real and that they exist, and two, that we often become de-sensitized to the trials of the world. I read that story to my thirteen year old, as she was heading out the door to go “hang out”, She looked at me with a sad face, said wow, and headed out the door. I sat there and wondered if it was a blessing that she never had to face that, or a hindrance that I have not taught her to be more sensitive. I know that there is so much out in this world, that we as an individual family unit do not see, nor experience. What about the families that do? What about the parents whose children are loved just as much by their parents that I do mine? What about the sadness, deprivations, trauma’s, trials, and tragedies? Do they simply not affect us, or go away? I am blessed, so blessed. My children  have never gone hungry, gone without shelter, food, clothing, serious health issues, education,  or nice things. Am I lucky? No, I am blessed, and I never take that for granted! I have seen life slip away from someone I love, I have seen other’s people’s lives affected by a life debilitating illness or prognosis. I have seen families without shelter, without power, without food, without medical care. I have seen alot, but not felt… I don’t ever want to become cold or callous or insensitive to the needs of this world. I know the power of Jesus! I know how much He loves all of His Children, and I know what I am expected to do. I hope that I meet his approval by doing what I can to help another person. Even if it is simply listening to what another person has to say, that ‘s a gift. Ask any elderly person in a nursing home, they will tell you, the highlight of their day is just to reminisce or share a story or two. I encourage you to do all you can for others, beginning in prayer. You may not be able to change a person’s circumstances yourself, but with your prayers, you are changing lives, and worlds of those around you. God is omnipresent, omnipotent, and omniscience.. Don’t ever forget the power of the Healer of the World. I hope that you are given the opportunity to bless another, and that you do it to your very best!

Peace¬

Fascade….

This has been on my heart, and I wanted to share my thoughts with you. Have you ever wondered why people say that they are Christians, but in reality are embarrassed or uncomfortable with really loving and praising God? I have, and will share openly my thoughts…

 In the Bible, Peter walked close with the Lord, and knew him well, but yet when it came down to the time that he should have been the most loyal to Jesus, Peter denied Him not once, but three times! (Matthew 26:69-75). What caused Peter to do that? Are there situation’s in our life today, that would or has caused us to do something similar? Did God stop loving Peter, or disown him with every right to do so? No, Peter was forgiven, still loved by God, and moved on to the next task at hand; bringing lost souls to Jesus and sharing the Great Commission!

I cannot even begin to comprehend God’s love for us. It is physically, spiritually, and emotionally impossible to truly understand, for we in ourselves have no knowledge on the level, the Agape love that Christ has for us.

 Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them. (John 14:21, NIV)

There have been times in the beginning of my walk with our Heavenly Father, where I have been embarrassed to raise my hands in church. I was terrified of praying out loud, and was not comfortable praying with my husband. Now, I think back, and say, “Really, are you serious? As much that God has done for me to show me His love?”. The mercy and grace that God shows me minute by minute, protection and provision that only He can provide, and I had the nerve to act like a prideful, love-less, shameful human being. I do not look back on that now, for I knew that If I asked for forgiveness, took responsibility for my behavior, and moved on. We are not to dwell and feel shameful for things that God has already forgiven us for, that is not honoring God.

Seasons…..

 Ephesians 6:10-18

New International Version (NIV)

The Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord<sup class="crossreference" value="(A)”> and in his mighty power.<sup class="crossreference" value="(B)”> 11 Put on the full armor of God,<sup class="crossreference" value="(C)”> so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood,<sup class="crossreference" value="(D)”> but against the rulers, against the authorities,<sup class="crossreference" value="(E)”> against the powers<sup class="crossreference" value="(F)”> of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.<sup class="crossreference" value="(G)”> 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God,<sup class="crossreference" value="(H)”> so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist,<sup class="crossreference" value="(I)”> with the breastplate of righteousness in place,<sup class="crossreference" value="(J)”> 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.<sup class="crossreference" value="(K)”> 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith,<sup class="crossreference" value="(L)”> with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.<sup class="crossreference" value="(M)”> 17 Take the helmet of salvation<sup class="crossreference" value="(N)”> and the sword of the Spirit,<sup class="crossreference" value="(O)”> which is the word of God.<sup class="crossreference" value="(P)”>
18 And pray in the Spirit<sup class="crossreference" value="(Q)”> on all occasions<sup class="crossreference" value="(R)”> with all kinds of prayers and requests.<sup class="crossreference" value="(S)”> With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying<sup class="crossreference" value="(T)”> for all the Lord’s people.

I have been experiencing spiritual warfare for the past week, I mean intense warfare! I feel like there is an internal tug of war going on inside of me. The best description of what that would be is of the picture in the article above. It can be a scary place at first to know that there is so much going on in your mind. I have learned that I do not rely on my emotions, or how I feel.. for satan using that against me in his first tactic!

This morning I pulled out my Bible, and pulled out my reference books on Spiritual warfare and this is what I realized. We are victorious in Christ. We have already defeated the devil, the test is, “Do we even know it?” Satan plays on our ignorance, meaning what we do not know. Two important revelations that we are to know is of the power given to us by the Holy Spirit. To understand Power and Authority is the key to warfare.  “Power is the Greek word dunamis. Authority is the Greek word exousia. Authority is the legal right to use power. We have been given authority to use the power supplied by the Holy Spirit. We must use power and authority by faith. It is based on the Word of God!” (Eckhardt). There is no need to fear, Demons are subject to the authority of the believer. Jesus gives us power to tread on serpents and scorpions. (Luke 10:19). He promised that nothing will harm us.
What do we need to have to be successful in spiritual warfare? In his book, Prayers that rout Demons, John Eckhardt writes this, ” We are to have endurance (2 Tim 2:3), Hatred of evil and evil spirits, (Psalm 139:22), Knowledge (2 Cor. 2:11), Persistence (Ps. 18:27), and Separation (2 Tim 2:14). To separate means to get or keep apart, no man who wars entangles himself with the affairs of this life.”

One of my favorites is the ability to release the power of the blood, Jesus’ blood that he shed for our sins. ” I cover my doorpost and possessions with the blood of Jesus” (Rev. 12:11), ” I rebuke all spirits of torment and fear because I have the peace through the blood of Jesus. (Col. 1:20 paraphrased).

When I feel weak, I hold on to His promises, I hold on to His Word, for there is truth, and there is no darkness in His truth. Sometimes it feels like riding on a boat in the middle of a storm, you just need to hold on until He calms the storm.

I hope you find peace as I have…..

Peace

 

To Be Reminded….

I took my daughter to gymnastics’s today just like every other Saturday, and while I was waiting for her, I realized that I was feeling completely overwhelmed and stressed out! I know that I had alot to do today, things to get done to prepare for her sleepover tonight to celebrate her birthday; errands to run, but nothing that would have me with this heavy heart and feeling of doom. To describe what it physically felt like, would be to describe anxiety, but it was more than that, it was Spiritual. I recently started a job working at home, while training this week, I realized that I was burning up a whole lot of busy work, which allowed me little time for anything else. I hadn’t even read my Bible in the last few days. How in a matter of four or five days could I experience such a peace, and then go to what I would describe as stress, and darkness? I knew what it was, it was satan. I realized that he had me busy, and I took my eye’s off the Lord. The busyness of everything, had gotten to the point where I hadn’t even prayed much, come to think of it. It had been a few days since Jesus and I had our time. It’s amazing, it does not take very long, a matter of hours or even days to get yourself back in a dark place. When Peter took his eyes off Jesus, while he was walking on water, he immediately sank!

On the way home from gymnastics, I prayed. I prayed and asked for forgiveness, and expressed my true desire to love, honor and walk with Him. After I prayed, I felt that peace again, the calmness, that worry, the anxiety, all immediately disappeared! I finished the rest of my day with my daughter, in a calm and joyous way, we had a good time together.

Later on that afternoon, as I was sitting down to peruse through my books that I just received to review and blog, I noticed a passage that the book was referring too. I wrote it down and looked it up, Hebrews 12:22-13:2. What I usually do when I read Scripture, is start at the beginning of that chapter that I am reviewing so I can get a real feel of what I am reading. I started at Hebrews 12:1 and read all the way down to verse twenty two.

Hebrews 12:1-6
New International Version (NIV)

12 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<sup class="crossreference" value="(A)”> with perseverance<sup class="crossreference" value="(B)”> the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus,<sup class="crossreference" value="(C)”> the pioneer<sup class="crossreference" value="(D)”> and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross,<sup class="crossreference" value="(E)”> scorning its shame,<sup class="crossreference" value="(F)”> and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.<sup class="crossreference" value="(G)”> 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary<sup class="crossreference" value="(H)”> and lose heart.

God Disciplines His Children

4 In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.<sup class="crossreference" value="(I)”> 5 And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,

“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart<sup class="crossreference" value="(J)”> when he rebukes you,
6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,<sup class="crossreference" value="(K)”>
and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”
 
Although it was discipline, it was refreshing! I put Him back in control, in the driver’s seat of my life knowing I am not to make any decisions without Him! I know that when I am in control, I make a mess, and its often such a big mess, that I do not have the desire or ability to clean it up!  I am not one who enjoys cleaning up, so I think I will just be obedient and let Him lead! What do you think?
 
Peace….