Hold On and Love

“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:13-14

Be vigilant and watchful, alert and responsible; persevere and hold fast in faithfulness and confidence, trusting and believing; be brave and not childish; grow strong and prevail, be empowered. Let all that you do in totality come about and be done in affection and benevolence.

Stuff is coming my way; I need to stay on guard and persevere through it. I trust and believe that God is on my side and I will prevail. So I will seek to do all that I do with loving affection, such as what God has shown me. This is what God has called me to do. My job in all the trial; hold on and love.

Thank You God! Help me to do this. Some days it’s so hard to hold on; and other’s it can be so hard to love. Let no sin rule over me!!! In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Do Not Be Misled

“Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.'” 1 Corinthians 15:33

Do not be led to go astray: The companionship and communication with those who have inner disposition to injure others will destroy and waste away, causing one’s gentleness, pleasantness, and kindness to wither away.

Sadly, I’m seeing this in hindsight. I’ve always heard this scripture, but never had it broken down. I experienced firsthand how spending time with wicked (the unjust, the wrongdoers, the violent) sapped out what goodness I had in me. Lord knows the work I’ve put in to try to remove the wickedness I embraced and to replace it with goodness. It’s hard. I must stay on my guard to not spend too much time with these people; namely the one God’s brought to the forefront of my mind, who have caused this to happen.

Lord, you brought a person to my mind as I read this. I pray I would always seek Your will regarding the relationship and time spent together with this person. Help me to remember what You’ve revealed to me. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen.

A Trustworthy Leader

“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders that our ancestors told us about when they said, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up out of Egypt?’ But now the LORD has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.”

The LORD turned to him and said, “Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?”

“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”

The LORD answered, “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites, leaving none alive.”

Gideon replied, “If now I have found favor in your eyes, give me a sign that it is really you talking to me. Please do not go away until I come back and bring my offering and set it before you.”

   And the LORD said, “I will wait until you return.”

… But the LORD said to him, “Peace! Do not be afraid. You are not going to die.” Judges 6:13-18, 23

13 Me: Lord, if you’re with me, than why has all this happened to me? I thought you brought me out of this bondage! Now, here I stand, back in the hand of the enemy! I’m feeling dread and my guts are in turmoil!

14 God: Go ahead. You’re strong enough. Would I send you to die?!

 15 Me: How can I change anything? My words are weak against theirs and I’m viewed with the least credibility among all of them!

16 God: I will be with you. You got this.

17-18 Me: So if this is the case, show me that this is what You’re telling me to do. I’m at your feet, Lord, direct me! What if they are careless with their words and this gets me emotionally riled up again?

 17b God: Get in the Word then… I’ll wait.

Me: *Reading through the passages….*

23 God: “Get.a.grip. This.isn’t.gonna.kill.you!”

How I’ve applied this instruction of the Lord. I spoke to this person I was praying about. I spoke honestly and plainly. I was me in my strength – the strength the Lord has given me over time along the path that He’s brought me down. I spoke to this person and I was okay! My dread ceased when He spoke and I was confident that no matter the response, I would be okay. And I am. 🙂

Wow, Lord. I’m so thankful for this awesome relationship we have. That something so simple as how I should handle a silly situation. I’m so in awe of Your love and presence in my life. Thank You Thank You Thank You! Thank You that you led me to a place that wouldn’t hurt me; that You’ve gone before me and lead me to healing and not destruction. Lord I pray I would always heed your instruction and that I would always seek Your will in everything. Thank You Father! Amen!

Do All for the Glory of God

“So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:12-13

“‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything’—but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.   Eat anything sold in the meat market without raising questions of conscience, for, ‘The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.'” 1 Corinthians 10:23-26

“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God— even as I try to please everyone in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved.” 1 Corinthians 1o:31-33

An end to my fast has come. Though I have the “right” to eat what I want, this does not mean what I want is necessarily beneficial. I must be on guard for temptation and know that God will help me to turn away and endure should it be my desire to indulge once again. God has brought me to the promised land – my next call is to possess the many areas of land and inherit the awesome promises He has for me.

Lord, You’ve certainly been consistent in Your message. Here I am, 17 days following the day I made the commitment to follow after Your commands. You’ve been clear and compassionate. I pray I would continue on in my commitment and that I would heed your caution to continue to in these healthy habits in following You. Lord, that I would take the way out you provide in tempting situations and endure it until I’ve won. For I come FROM a place of victory, I don’t go forth FOR victory – because You have already won the battle in Christ. In Jesus precious name, I thank You! Amen.

Living Out My Promises

“I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” 1 Corinthians 9:27

“Strike” is from “hupópiazó” meaning to discipline through hardship. Therefore, I am to discipline myself through hardship and make my body a slave. “Slave” is from “doulagógeó” meaning to subdue or bring into subjection. So then I’m to control my body; not allowing it to do anything it wishes but only as I make it.  Thus having done so, when I’ve preached (from “kérussó” meaning to proclaim a conviction pursuasively), I’ll not be disqualified (from “adokimos” meaning, not standing the test) from the very thing I’m proclaiming.

For me; this screams STOP BEING LAZY. *Sigh* I’m glad God is spelling out to me what the errors are in my life that I need to work on… but boy is it showing me my idols! I worship solitude, comfort, and food. God is calling me to control my eating habits, my time management, and my body. LOL Well… then, control these things I will!!

Lord, You know the perfect way to order my life as You’d have me order it. Continue to show me the way.  So far, diet was one, sleep was second, time was third, heart was fourth, and now ACTING is fifth. I see now the importance in this order. My diet helps my energy and mental health; sleep to enforce the diet; time management to make the first two work and to eliminate chaos in my day; a soft and kind heart towards others as a result of being well fed, well rested, and order in the home; and now to not just know this truth, but to live it. Sitting on my butt will not accomplish what You’re calling me to. Thank You Lord!! In Jesus name. Amen.

The Comfort of God

“But food does not commend us to God; for neither if we eat are we the better, nor if we do not eat are we the worse.” 1 Corinthians 8:8

Our diets are not the bridge to God; Christ is.

Last night, I was really overwhelmed after the day. I was stressed and despite my conviction against doing so, I ate some brownies. After doing it, I felt awful and like complete junk. I felt like I had failed God and that I wouldn’t feel His presence again. As I went grocery shopping, God reminded me that I’m not what I’ve done, but what I’ve overcome and that He’s saving me from my destructive ways. It’s more about getting me to be more like Him than what’s happening in this very moment – this is all leading to something BIG and He’s here by my side.  Then as I bought food, I was thinking “I need this so I can be near Him; I can’t go without Him again!” If I had read my devotions last night, I would have gone to bed knowing, it’s not this diet that is bringing me to Him; it’s ME. I am reminded of the passage, Romans 8:38-39 “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” No circumstance can separate me from Him unless I push Him away, and even then He doesn’t go away without His own fight.

Father… oh my Daddy God! I am so thankful for your comfort in such a struggle. You sought to reach me in what ways that surrounded me – hearing, eyesight, and touch. You used my husbands comforting arms to show me I wasn’t alone, the songs of Your saints to remind me of what You are doing, and Your awesome Word to speak volumes about our relationship. How grateful I am that You are my God!! I thank You and praise You for Your covering and forgiveness and genuine love.

There’s Still More…

“there are still very large areas of land to be taken over.'” Joshua 13:1b

The “promised land” was their destination all along… but it wasn’t just one piece of land but many!

God is bringing me to several different lands to possess; bringing me to a place to destroy many inhabitants that do not belong in my life; making many changes inside of me.

Lord, this kind fo deflates me. I’m having a hard day today. I want to just eat what we have and not stress about anything. I’m reminded of what You revealed to me, “When God calls us to possess His promise, His expectation is that we do so to our fullest capacity and with our whole hearts. No lingering in our lusts and sinful behaviors but take hold of His promise and totally destroying each sin in our life; each temptation that would lead us to turn away from Him.” My whole heart and no lingering is a big commitment. It means giving up the worship of my own comfort, my sinful ways, my inner desires, and questioning every motive. Lord, help me to not get overwhelmed with this. Please give me a Word to hold on through the struggles of this call on my life. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

ETA: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak. Ephesians 6:12-19

Quoted from a previous blog entry (Hope, Perseverance, and Worship): “He gives us armor to wear, giving us protection and power to accomplish His Will. He gives us our helmet of salvation, redemption, and forgiveness. It is in Christ’s sacrifice that we remember to protect our minds and imaginations. We guard our eyes to keep us from temptation and focus only on Christ. He gives us our breastplate of righteousness to keep our heart and emotions safe that we wouldn’t be governed by our feelings or things in our environment, but by truth. He gives us Truth to wrap around us like a belt to safeguard us from error and sandals of peace to guide our steps. We are to plant our feet in His Truth and He will empower us to stand firm against attack. He gives us faith as our shield to protect against the enemy’s fiery arrows, fellow soldiers to stand against his schemes, and God’s Word as the sword of the Spirit to always be ready to deflect attacks and pierce hearts with The Truth. (Ephesians 6:10-20)”

Thank You, Lord for this Word! I’m so grateful for Your diligence in watching over me and being by my side as a silversmith refining silver. You have not left me to do this on my own but are continually present and active in my walk. I pray You’d continue to be as such. Thank You, Lord. In Jesus name. Amen.