Tag Archives: faith

Seeking Wisdom?

“Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true wisdom. All who obey his commandments will grow in wisdom. Praise him forever!” Psalm 111:10

“”Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.” Proverbs 1:7

‘If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.”  James 1:5-6

When we concede to God in all things, acknowledging him before any other consideration, he says, this is where wisdom comes from. We must trust God and only God in this matter. There are no alternatives.

Examine the world around you. What is taken for wisdom in the world will be proved to be foolishness instead. For example, you may know someone who stockpiles groceries and household items. They firmly believe they are saving money wisely by buying up all the “deals” in the stores and storing most of what is bought because it cannot all be used immediately. Think of what could happen to the stored items. Fire, flood, wind, theft, moth, rust, and corruption! Foods expire and paper products get damp and moldy. Fourteen bottles of shampoo are a waste of money, even if they were only 25 cents apiece, ($3.50)  if your hair falls out from sickness.  God has promised to provide everything we need for daily life. He will keep this promise faithfully; when we trust him to do it, then we are wise. If we look at someone’s stockpile and think, “I need one of those,” because we fear we will run out of these things, then we are not trusting the Lord.

Fear of the LORD, that is, trusting him completely in all things, is the foundation for wisdom. Jesus Christ is the Rock of our salvation, and we build upward from him. Read Luke 7:46-49. The storms of life cannot shake the Lord. The storms of life easily wipe out what is made by men.

Fools despise wisdom and discipline. It takes discipline to be able to trust God completely. He will bring you through each test to success, but you have to believe he is doing it! Wavering back and forth between what you know the Lord says and what the world around you is saying will just make it harder to get through. Double-mindedness causes more storm tossing.

To know what God is saying about a subject, search the scriptures. Be patient! Even if  your mind is in a turmoil today, listen as you read with your heart, and the Lord will lead you to the truth. Reminder – the scripture in James chapter one says to ASK our very, very, very generous God for wisdom, and he will give it to you. He wants to give it to you.

Thank you, Father God, for your generosity and gifts of wisdom. Thank you for teaching me right disciplines to operate in your wisdom and never be swept away by foolishness again. Bless all who read this now with a desire to trust you completely and seek you today, in Jesus’ Name.

 

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Emotional Lions In Your Den

There is a story in the Bible of Daniel, prophet of Israel in the courts of King Nebuchudnezzar in Babylon. Daniel has the king’s favor, and has a high position of authority despite being a slave. Daniel’s enemies trick the king into making a law to exclude Daniel. When a decree goes out that the king must be worhsiped, Daniel, who worships God alone, cannot do this, so he is thrown into a den of lions to be killed.  God causes the lions’ mouths to be shut and they do nothing to Daniel. After spending the night with the lions, Daniel is removed and the king causes his enemies and their families to be thrown into the den instead.

We know that Daniel trusted God completely, no matter what the outcome. He would still have been trusting God if the lions had attacked and eaten his body. Daniel knew God, and knew that he had God’s favor, so even if he died, he would still be with God.

Think for a moment about what Daniel might have felt about his situation. It isn’t likely he just calmly, without emotion, walked calmly through these circumstances. What would you feel? Some suggestions of emotional reactions are terror, panic, anger, confusion, even sickness.  The thing to remember is that no matter what he was feeling, Daniel still trusted God. You can review his life prior to that event, and see that trusting God was a habit and practice of Daniel’s. He chose to follow God and did not allow anyone or anything to alter his choice. It is very clear that God greatly honored Daniel throughout his life for his steadfastness.

God is supremely faithful. When we choose Him, He will move heaven and earth to keep us in the center of His will.  God is all-wise, all-knowing, and all-powerful. He knows we cannot do anything His way, which is perfect, without His help, so He sent Jesus Christ to pay for the sin in us that prevents us from doing things His way. Then when we accept the sacrifice of Jesus as our payment for sin, God places His own Spirit in us so that we have His power and desire to do right.

Being overcome by emotion, such as fear or anger, is not a sin. God made us in His image, and He is very emotional. When we hold on to the emotion instead of holding on to God, then that emotion has taken His place in our circumstances, and then we are sinning, because the emotion is replacing God in us.

We can trust God to save us from our emotions so that we can see His will clearly and remain on track. Daniel surrendered himself to God, and God shut the lions mouths so that Daniel was not killed. Also consider that when Daniel appealed to God and the lions mouths were shut, Daniel no longer had any reason to be afraid of what he was experiencing.

When you are confronted by some circumstance, such as trouble at work, false witnesses, sickness, etc., submit to God and He will lift you up. You may spend a night in the lions’ den, but you will always, always be rescued when you trust God. The rescue will bring to bear the mind of Christ is you, and if the circumstance must continue, you will be able to endure it.

Reject letting emotions be in control; choose to trust God.

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Performance-Based Christianity?

Jesus said, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.” He also told us that because he was going to the Father, we would do even greater works than he did.

Are you trying to work without seeing Jesus? Without the blessing and grace of the Father?

Good things we do, like starting food banks and wrestling to get money from the government to stock them may have an impact on needs in society. How much greater would this help to people be if we relied on God alone to plan and stock the food bank, and to give the increase because we do it in his Name?

What keeps us from waiting upon God and doing things his way? The “risk” involved from bringing the seen out of the unseen? What if we fail? Pride opens up a can of ifs, ands, and buts, and what could be a beautiful project never comes to life. However, we feel if we can micro-manage a project enough, it will succeed and there is no risk.

We say, well, we are going to fix the worship time at church so it isn’t so boring. Get some new tunes and jazz up the old ones. Bless the socks off those people whether they get it or not. We are such good musicians, God will accept this music as worship and be proud of us.We will practice and practice until our arrangements are perfect and then offer it up as a sacrifice of worship and praise.

But God says a broken and contrite heart is what he wants offered to him. He wants us to be still and know that he is God. When we know who he is and know what we are in relationship with him, then the music is not a performance. It flows from the heart of God in unity with his children. Each gives to the other in perfect harmony.

All that we do in love for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit does not fail because God never fails. May he bless you today with creative thoughts and the wisdom to seek him first to know how to act on those righteous thoughts. In Jesus’ Name.

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Above All Powers

God is above all creation, visible and invisible.

He created us for Himself, and what He is willing to share with us is more than we can think, describe, or even imagine. 

Because we cannot obey or do what God wants by our own volition, which is the perfect way to live, God the Father sent God the Son to pay the penalty for our sin. The result is to be restored to knowing what God wants and receive His blessing and eternal life with Him. To receive this, we need only to confess our desire turn away from the sin we know controls us and accept what Christ, the Son of God, has done to save us.

We cannot know know all the ways and thoughts of God, but He has given us this one Way which opens up the gate to new life.  Everyone wants to know God. So He opened up the Way in Jesus Christ, His Son. Our new life in Him is spiritual, for we receive it by faith, not by sight. However, all of this new life is made known in us by the mighty power of God in us that manifests in our physical life and brings glory to Him.

While we live life in the physical, we may still sin against God, even though we know Him and love Him in our hearts. Our desire may be to obey Him, but until we accept that every minute detail of life must be placed on the altar before God, we will still be confused and do what is against Him. Very often, we accept the wickedness of man ahead of the righteousness of God and go with people instead of the Everlasting One who save us.

How do we do this wrong? Any time we defend what we know is a lie, or not God’s will, we participate in that lie.  An example is something we know that we know from reading God’s Word that God hates, such as pride. Yet there may be someone in this world, or even passed away from this world whom we defend as righteous when that person is not speaking truth and we know it. Then we are cut off from God. Isaiah 59 says He hears us, but there is nothing He can do for us until we repent and put Him above all. First. 

We can never assume that someone’s so-called right motives make it right to defend a certain position. Only God knows what is right and what is wrong. Therefore, He must judge, and not we ourselves. We must seek Him in every thought: what is your justice in this matter, Lord?

In the end, God will prevail. Let us seek Him first and obey Him and never look at another point of view. Let us embrace Him in peace.

In Jesus’ Name.

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The Easiest Rule

“Pay all your debts, except the debt of love for others. You can never finish paying that! If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill all the requirements of God’s law. For the commandments against adultery and murder and stealing and coveting – and any other commandment – are all summed up in this one commandment: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no worng to anyone, so love satisfies all of God’s requirements.” Romans 13:8-10

Whether or not we love others is tested by this statement: “Many waters cannot quench love; neither can rivers drown it.” Song of Solomon 8:7

Present day culture is as overwhelming as many waters. It flows over us even when we want nothing to do with it. Followers of Jesus Christ receive greater enmity from the world than people who do not know Him. Yet it is our unquenchable spirit in our circumstances that draws those same persecuting unbelievers to want the Savior for themselves. God, then, has made living here on oppressed earth and in His Kingdom of eternal life at the same time a win-win situation for us. We can obey the command to love others no matter what, and God will use this to bring them to Himself., which means we have also obeyed His command to give the Good News of Jesus Christ to everyone. Our faith makes us whole.

When we receive Christ as Savior and Lord, God gives us His Name. We are adopted into His family and have all the same rights and privileges as His Firstborn, Jesus. We can read the Bible to find out how Jesus does things, and we can do likewise. Not less than; everything he has done, we can do. He says so in John 14:12 – ” I am telling you the truth: those who believe in me will do what I do—yes, they will do even greater things, because I am going to the Father.”

Most people, even unbelievers, agree that Jesus went about doing good. He came to show us the Father’s love, and He did that by doing good. He loved everyone, equally. Jesus said that He did nothing by HImself, but only what He heard the Father saying. We know that God’s love is perfect and poured equally on everyone, so we know we can do the same when we follow Jesus and do everything we hear the Father saying. Believers have a special ability towards each other. Because we are all family, we have the ability to love our neighbor as Christ loves us; He is our Brother!!

Jealousy and preference are outlawed in the Kingdom of God. You cannot love someone as the Father loves you and be jealous of what that person has or can do that you can’t. God says He gives each of us special gifts with which to serve Him, and when we focus on Him and use the gifts the way Jesus used them, we will not fall into covetousness.

The gifts we receive are spiritual in nature. They work out in the practice of everyday life, but they are driven by faith and the power of the Holy Spirit. To demonstrate sincere love for one another, we must love by faith. I Thessalonians 5:19 says do not quench, or restrain, the Holy Spirit. If we do not have His power, we cannot love by faith. As many waters cannot quench love, so many waters cannot restrain us from living in the love of God and pouring it out to everyone alike. To step away from this awesome way of life, ignoring the Spirit of God living in us cannot quench the love of God toward us. He remains the same, yesterday, today, and forever.

So, my friends, if you have forgotten how to live as one with Christ, I urge you to stand before God now and repent of your sin and receive the love He has never stopped lavishing on you. Then, you can once again love others freely and the true law will be fulfilled in you.

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New Life is Really New

Romans 5:2  Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of highest privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

It is an awesome privilege to be brought into friendship with God.  Jesus Christ, the Son of God Most High came as perfect Man to be slain for us in our sinful state, so that we can accept His sacrifice on our behalf and enter into a right relationship with God. Psalm 102:27-28 reminds us that God is forever, and in Him, in this right relationship, we are totally secure forever. When everything else in creation passes away, we are safe. Yes, our own bodies are mortal and pass away, but God exchanges them for us with a new body so that we can be forever with Him.

This is the love of God!

Romans 5:10 confirms that as sinners saved by faith in Christ, we have friendship with God.. He died for us while we were still His enemies so we could know that we know we are okay with Him now. Our faith is real, and it has eternal results.

We are delivered from punishment, the punishment we deserve because of our sin, by the life of Jesus Christ. He lives in us now, believers, to keep our rescue certain and sure. God does not change, and He keeps us in His unchanging power. There is nothing of death and punishment we need to fear.

Some people trust God for salvation, and then continue to hold on to their punishment! They try to make their own new life in Christ as best they can. This is sin; denying that Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient for every piece of baggage you’ve ever loaded up.  A true friend of God acknowledges and relishes, with joy, that God is author and finisher of his faith. It is God who breathes life into us by His Holy Spirit. Apart from God, we can do nothing. We certainly cannot continue to carry or repair our pasts and walk the new life with God at the same time.

Are you holding on to a person,  place or thing, or even a way of thinking, because you assume it is your responsibility to live by that rule? You were there before you trusted God, so you think you have to deal with it, not Him. My friend, you are wrong. It is a wrong that you do not need to carry with you, hindering you and others around you from fulfillment in Christ. Do you want abundant life? Of course you do. And you know you cannot have it as long as you hold on to this obligation to an old way of doing things. Then surrender whatever it is to the Lord your God. His ways are higher than your ways. He will readily forgive you for hanging on to that injustice, and He will make things right for everyone who has been affected by your misery. In fact, seeing you change; the joy in you and firmness in your new step from your strengthening friendship with God will go a long, long way to helping other people be inspired by Him, too.

It is all God, and whatever we do in our own strength is just a false shadow of truth. For the just shall live by faith and not by sight.

Abraham was just some guy living in the area of Iraq. Nothing special about him. One day, God spoke to Abe and told him to pack up and move to Canaan, and God would make him into a mighty nation. Abraham heard this, believed it was God speaking, and did it.  We know he was a normal person because his failures are also outlined in the scriptures. Whatever God did for Abraham for a life of faith, God will do for you. His promise to Abraham was also His promise to us. We are the great nation, the Body of Christ and the Kingdom of God.

We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. Without Him, we can’t do anything right.

Unload your baggage to God. He won’t load you up with any of that stuff ever again. His yoke is easy – He walks in tandem with you – and His burden is light.

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Are You In Trouble?

Our greatest defense for a troubled mind or a troubled spirit is the peace of God.

Meditate upon the Word of God to facilitate His peace to come upon you . . .

Psalm 46:10 BE SILENT AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD! I WILL BE HONORED BY EVERY NATION. I WILL BE HONORED THROUGHOUT THE WORLD.

Philippians 4: 4 Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! 5 Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.

 6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

 8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. 9 Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.


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