Friday, October 31, 2008

"If My People - Part 2"

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14

In all the years I have been sending out the devotional I have never sent out more than one each day, but the Lord began to speak a word so clearly to my heart this morning and told me to send it.

The main focus of this scripture is not just prayer, and as absolutely vital as prayer is, it's not the only condition here. I am sure that most, hopefully all, of us are praying (we must keep it up), but God also said to repent. "...and turn from their wicked ways." Repentance is "action"- it's something you "do" not just "say". It's changing your mind, turning from the direction you are going and begin going in the totally opposite direction.

God did not say in this verse to pray then get up and keep doing the same things you were doing before you knelt in prayer. He said, "Turn from it!!". Go in a different direction. Get on a straight path, a narrow path, off the broad wide way that leads to destruction, off of the worldly path, get on the godly path, stop being conformed to this world, be transformed, stop trying to serve two masters, start giving God first place and make Him the priority of your life.

Jesus told the woman who was caught in the act of adultery, "go and sin no more".
Zachaeus was a "legal thief" (a tax collector), but he gave back everything, plus more, that he had unlawfully taken from the people.
Gideon tore down his father's idols and removed the groves they worshiped their false gods in.
The rich young ruler was told to sell all he had- because his god was his money- and follow Jesus.
Jonah not only prayed from the belly of the fish, but then he went to Nineveh and obeyed what God told him to do.

Don't just pray for forgiveness and healing... stop sinning! Repent and change your direction! Repentance starts in the heart and is confirmed through your actions.

If you are living in adultery, if you are living an immoral lifestyle, repent and turn from it.
If you are cheating people- stop and become a giver and make restitution.
If you are indulging in sinful habits, lay them on the altar and walk in temperance.
If you have been using your mouth to curse, then change your speech and replace it with blessings, God's word and praise.
If you are disobeying the word of the Lord, repent and start obeying.
If you are calling evil acceptable and trying to justify it, repent and start calling it what it is- agree with God on the matter.
If you are withholding your tithes and offerings and spending it on your own pleasures, stop and begin to honor God with your giving-- He gave it to you.
If you are looking to someone other than God to meet your need, repent for not trusting Him and begin to put your faith and confidence in Him- He is the Provider.
If you have been advocating what God hates, repent and start loving what He loves and hating sin.
If you are forsaking the assembling of yourself with other Christians- and you have the ability to go to church- then start going.
If you are neglecting prayer and Bible reading, repent and determine to make it a priority in your life by turning off the television or computer or iPod- whatever is robbing your time and keeping you from doing so.

If you are a minister of the gospel and are preaching those things that tickle the ears, promote seeker friendly environments, provide for tolerance of sin, are humanistic philosophies, with enticing words of man's wisdom, then stop, repent and preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified, preach the cross it is the power of God unto salvation, preach holiness for without it no man shall see God, preach self denial instead of self esteem, preach blessed are the poor in spirit instead of blessed are those who have vast material wealth.

I absolutely agree it is time to pray... but it is also time to repent, and not in word only, but in deed, action, attitude, lifestyle and speech.

Have a great day. If we not only pray, but confess we have sinned and turn away from our wicked ways and begin doing righteously, He will heal our land.

"If My People"

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14

For years we have heard this message preached and preached, well, it is time to do more than just preach it... it's time to heed it and do it. It is time for those of us who are God's people to humble ourselves before our God, pray, seek His face and turn from our wicked ways. It is time we cry out and confess to God that we have sinned against Him and done wickedly.

What are the "wicked ways" we have done before the Lord?
1) We have put other gods before Him- pleasure, entertainment, prosperity, mammon, fame, fortune.
2) We have looked to the arm of the flesh instead of the arm of God for provision and protection.
3) We have placed our trust in man's ability to meet our needs- the doctors, the government, the welfare system, banks, loan institutions, etc.
4) We have done that which is right in our own eyes and have forsaken the council of God's word.
5) We have taken that which is holy and profaned it, blasphemed it and allowed it to be trodden underfoot by ungodly entertainers and politicians.
6) We have sought God's hand and not His face.
7) We have committed the two evils spoken by Jeremiah (Jer. 2:13)- we have forsaken the Lord, and invented our own faulty substitution to serve our wants and lusts.
8) We have murder thousands and thousands of innocent babies through abortion.
9) We have stolen, lied, cheated, deceived, stepped on and been abusive for our own selfish gain.
10) We have let down the standard of the blood stained banner.
11) We have had itching ears, rejected truth and not endured sound doctrine.
12) We have pursued our own selfish desires instead of His purposes.
13) We have lost our first love.
14) We have become lukewarm.
15) We have been hypocritical- drawing near to the Lord with our mouths while our hearts are far from Him.
16) We have rebelled against God's lordship over our lives.
17) We have sought to do our own will and not the will of God.
18) We have called good evil, evil good, wrong right and right wrong.
19) We have lived immoral, greedy, over indulgent, self centered lives.

There are too many more sins that we have committed to name here. But if we repent-turn from them and turn back to God- with our whole heart there is a promise that is attached to the condition-- I will heal their land. We need our land- our nation, our government, our society, our churches, our families- healed. Only God can bring the healing, but only as we humble ourselves and repent of our wicked ways.

Have a great day. "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us." (1 John 1:8-10)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

"Will Versus Will"

"And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." Matthew 26:39

Most of our problems, confusion and frustration comes as a result of placing our will above God's will. When we do it our way, instead of God's way; when we do what we want to do, instead of what God wants us to do; when we follow our path instead of God's path; when we make our own decisions, instead of surrendering to His guidance; when we pursue our plans and agenda, instead of His purposes-- we are placing our will above His will. This opens the door to "turmoil" in our lives. It did for King Saul when he put his will above God's will- he lost the kingdom. It did for Aaron when he put the will of the people above God's will- Moses rebuked him sternly. It did for Jonah- he wound up in the belly of a fish. It did for Adam- sin came upon all mankind.

Following our own will is not difficult- it is easy- because we can offer so many reasons and excuses to justify it- it's too hot, it's too cold, I'm too tired, everyone else is doing it, I'm not qualified, I've never done it like that before, it cost too much, I don't have to do it like that it will work like this just as well, I'll do it when I can, I don't have the time, the conditions aren't favorable, and so on. But the consequences aren't always easy to endure or live with though. In the end we wind up the losers.

Daily we face the decision to do our will or God's will- it can be something as "simple" as getting up when He wakes you to spend an extra hour in prayer, or something "bigger" like answering the call He has on your life. Whatever it is, you have to make the choice to surrender to His will or do your own will.

Have a great day. There are consequences to following our own will-- a lot of turmoil in our lives for one. So who is winning your will over this morning? You or God?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

"Redistribution Of Wealth"

"Riches and honor are with me; yea, durable riches and righteousness." (Prov. 8:18)

In this presidential campaign one of the issues is that of the "redistribution of wealth". I am not going to get political this morning (so please keep reading), I am just going to obey the Lord. The Lord has been speaking this to me for the past several hours and wants me to talk to His people about "redistribution of wealth".

God's people been given tremendous wealth, we have a great treasure chest in our possession. I am not talking about money. Money does not equal true "wealth"- although most of our ministers have taught it that way. As a matter of fact, Jesus warned us not to "lay up treasures on earth", but lay them up in heaven instead. He went on to say that they are fleeting- "moths and rust corrupt and thieves break through and steal". Money is temporary, it loses it's value, is effected by the economy, perishes, spends so fast. The Bible even says that it "takes wings and flies". We are warned also about "lusting" after it, coveting to have more and not being content with such as we have. The Bible specifically says that you can't serve God and money (mammon). The greatest warning we have in the Bible is that the love of money is the root of 'all' evil. "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."(1 Tim. 6:10)

What is this great wealth that we have, what is this treasure of great price? It's eternal life. There is nothing more valuable than your soul. If you lose it, you lose everything! Your soul is eternal- it lives on forever either in heaven or in hell. You and I have been given the most valuable gift- eternal life, forgiveness of sins, peace with God, salvation. The question is, "What are we doing with it?" The Bible tells us that "freely we have received, freely give."

God never called us to receive this great treasure and sit on it, do nothing with it, rejoice only that we have it, hoard it, withhold it from our families, friends, neighbors, co-workers. He commissioned us to take it into all the world. We need to "redistribute" it and get it outside of the four walls of the church. We need to give it to those who are perishing, to those who are lost, to those who are dying in trespasses and sin, to those who have not heard the good news that Jesus saves. This message of eternal life is worth more than gold, silver, riches and the treasures of this world, and it has been given to us to "spread" around. This is the true and eternal riches and it has been entrusted to those who have already received it to take it to those who have not. "For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?" (Mark 8:36)

Have a great day. What are you doing to help "redistribute" this eternal wealth that you have already received?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"The Yoke"

"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage." Galatians 5:1

Do not be entangled again with "THE" yoke of bondage. What is "the" yoke that once had you entangled? For each of us it may be something different. That yoke may have been fear, bitterness, some sinful habit, a wrong mindset, etc. When the Son sets us free, we are free indeed so we need to walk in and continue to walk in that freedom. We do not have to be entangled again once we have been freed.

This morning remember that you have been given everything that you need to stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ has made you free. He has given you everything that you need to be, and stay, victorious. He has given you weapons- armor. He has given you His word. He has given you His name. He has given you the Blood. Any one, are all combined, are more powerful than any force known to man and they have been made available to every born again child of God to make us, and keep us, over comers and more than conquerors.

Have a great day. Whatever "the" yoke was that you were once entangled in, once Christ has broken it, you never have to be entangled in it ever again.

Monday, October 27, 2008

"Put On Hold"

"And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered together, and pitched by the valley of Elah, and set the battle in array against the Philistines." 1 Samuel 17:2

From the dealings of David and Israel with their enemy the Philistines we learn that you will respond in one of three ways when the enemy comes:

1) You oppose and stand against him. "And David spake to the men that stood by him, saying, What shall be done to the man that killeth this Philistine, and taketh away the reproach from Israel? for who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?" (verse 26) You take a stand like David did against that which mocks God.

2) You do nothing. "And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him, and were sore afraid." (verse 24) You can allow fear and intimidation like the armies of Israel did to take hold of you and cause you to do nothing but sit back and let the enemy continue to dominate.

3) You can join the enemy. Later in the life of David we see that he joined forces with the Philistines and actually fought with them in battle. "And the time that David dwelt in the country of the Philistines was a full year and four months. And it came to pass in those days, that the Philistines gathered their armies together for warfare, to fight with Israel. And Achish said unto David, Know thou assuredly, that thou shalt go out with me to battle, thou and thy men.(1 Samuel 27:7; 28:1)

It's this third response that I want to look at a little more closely this morning. David had been anointed as king of Israel but had not yet taken the throne. Here was the next king of Israel living and fighting with Israel's enemy. When you look at David's story after the Philistines sent him away, you'll notice that after this is when he was finally crowned king.

David had joined himself with the enemy and wasn't crowned king until after he was disjoined from them. This tells me that when we join ourselves to that which is the "enemy"- sin (in any form)- we are delaying God's predestined purpose for our lives. David's destiny was "on hold" because of his association with the enemy. I know that sometimes there is a timing involved but sometimes the delay has nothing to do with timing, it has everything to do with what we are "joined" to. If we are "joined" to anything other than God- especially if we are joined to that which is an enemy of God, which opposes God, which is against God (His values, principles, commands)- then we are causing our own destiny to be put on hold.

Have a great day. Is there something that you are joined to that is a hindrance to God fulfilling His plan in your life?

Friday, October 24, 2008

"Trapped On An Island"

"And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you." 1 Corinthians 6:16,17

I had the strangest dream this morning- it was just crazy. There were several of us trapped on an island of dinosaurs and other really large creatures. Some of these creatures were intelligent. One of them got wind of a plan that we had to escape from the island and return to our own civilization. This large bird like creature that learned of our plan was our enemy and did not want us to leave so it destroyed the device we had invented as a means of escape. It had the strength and the size to do so, so it was able to accomplish it's task.

This dream reminded me of our lives at time. We, through sin, wrong choices, deception- whatever the case- wind up being somewhere where we don't belong. We wind up in the enemy's camp, we wind up in bondage, we wind up living on a carnal plain like we talked about yesterday. As followers of Jesus we are to live in a certain "civilization"- it's called the Kingdom of God. We were not intended to live among those who are not of like precious faith. I am not talking about not being "in the world", I am talking about not being "of the world". We have to be light and salt to the lost so we do have to "rub shoulders" with them and try to reach them with the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I am talking about not "living" where they live. They live after their own desires. They make their choices based on the lust of their flesh. They have no moral compass to guide their lives. They do what is right in their own sight. They leave God out of the equation. They seek their own kingdom, try to enforce their own agenda, lie, cheat, steal, deceive- anything to have their way and get what they want. They don't live by Godly principals or absolutes, but by preference and popular opinion. They lean to their own understanding and are their own counselors. I am describing a "civilization" that is not part of the Kingdom of God. If what I have said describes you, then you are "trapped on an island".

It's the plan of the enemy to keep you "trapped". He doesn't want you free, he doesn't want you to live where God intends for you to live. He wants you in bondage- living by something other than Kingdom principals and truth. But today can be your day of escape. There is a "device" that will free you and the enemy is not big enough or strong enough to destroy it. It called repentance, and trust and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Have a great day. Are you living outside of Kingdom principals and God's word? Then you are "trapped" in another "civilization".

Thursday, October 23, 2008

"A Higher Level"

"...Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter. And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne." Revelation 4:1b,2

God is calling His people to come up to a higher place- a place in the Spirit. It is imperative (and I stress "imperative" because if we don't it can be dangerous to our spiritual and physical well being). It is imperative that we do this (get in the Spirit) in light of the days in which we are living.

Because we contact this world through our physical senses it is easy to judge what we see and what we hear according to the natural scheme of things. It is so easy to allow what we see and hear in the natural to dictate and govern our emotions, our choices, our way of thinking. If we look at the events that are happening around us from a worldly, natural perspective instead of from a higher perspective- God's perspective, a kingdom perspective- we will make decisions and live our lives based on fear instead of faith, personal preference instead of Godly conviction, and fleshly desires instead of Godly values.

John had to go up to a different "level" (a spiritual level) in order to see things as they really are and will be. God could not show him what he needed to see as long as he was still on the "earthly" level because the things He showed him were "spiritual" and could not be received or understood by the physical. "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." (1 Cor. 2:14)

If we are living on an "earthly" level- judging after appearance, dictated by fear, walking after the lusts and desires of the flesh, living by sight instead of by faith, putting our hope and confidence in man instead of in God, believing the reports of the world instead of God's word, not decreasing and allowing God to increase and take control of our mind, will, emotions, spirit, soul, heart and body-- then we are carnally minded instead of spiritually minded.

Are you living on a spiritual level- allowing God's Holy Spirit to govern your entire life, or are you still living on a carnal level- allowing your flesh (your own desires) to rule? One gives life, the other brings death. If we are carnally minded, then it's time to repent and "come up hither" to a spiritual level-- "For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace." (Romans 8:6)

Have a great day. You just cannot see clearly on a carnal level... you have to come up to a spiritual level where you can see and understand things from God's perspective.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

"I Want To"

"For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do." Romans 7:19

I have heard people say, even preachers preach, that when you come to Christ you can still do anything you WANT to do, (you can drink all you want to drink, smoke all you want to smoke, cheat all you want to cheat, etc.) then they add--- you just don't WANT to do it any more. That is a misrepresentation and it leaves people with the impression that if it is something that you "want" to do, then it's all right to do it.

When I received Jesus as Savior, I had such a radical conversion that I completely turned from the sinful practices that were in my life at that moment- it was not a "progression" to lay down some sins. Even though certain sins were no longer a struggle for me, they ceased being part of my lifestyle, they lost their hold on my soul, there are certain others that did not (and have not) gone so easily. Paul talks about this in his own life in the Book of Romans. He said that the things that he did not want to do he found himself doing and the things he did want to do he didn't do. (Romans 7:15-20) He points out that there is a constant warfare going on within us- the flesh against the spirit, sin against grace.

When I come to Christ, I am born again but at that point I am not completely dead to self. My self still wants and desires that which is wrong, that which is sinful, that which tends to death, that which is in opposition to God's laws and rule over my life. My fleshly nature wants to hate, it wants to be intemperate, it wants to lust, it covets, it cheats and so on. This is why we are also told to "crucify the flesh", "mortify the deeds of the flesh", "deny ourselves", "take up our cross", "follow Jesus". So you see, I can't do anything I "want" to do, not if that which I "want" to do is sin. And until I am "dead" to that sin my flesh will still "want" to do it. When people come to Christ, you can't say to them that they can do anything they want to do, but you won't want to do it, because it implies that if it is something they want to do, then it's all right to do it.

Have a great day. I may "want" to do something that is sin, but it is not all right to do it... I must die to it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

"What Time Is It?

"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." Galatians 6:9

This is not the time to become or grow weary. It is not the time to give up, shut up, back up. It is not the time to turn back, look back, retreat back. It is time to seek the Lord more, pray more fervently, fast often, keep pressing forward, to persevere and not faint. It is time to walk more closely to Him than ever, to hold His word in high esteem, to be holy, to lay aside every weight of sin that would so easily beset you. It's time to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, strength and mind. It's time to abide in Him, hide His word in your heart, meditate on it and obey it. It's time to cast down your idols, your agenda, your selfish wants and desires, your self-centeredness and materialism. It's time to come out from among the world and separate yourself from the philosophies of the world, their mindset, their wisdom. This is the time to stand- on His word, on His promises, having on the full armor.

It's time to stop being conformed to the world and be transformed by God's word. It's time to stop being fleshly minded, worldly minded, religious minded and start being Kingdom minded. It's time to honor what God honors, rebuke what God rebukes, esteem what God esteems, love what God loves, hate what God hates. It's time to put His agenda, His values, His commands above your own or those of the world around us. It's time to decrease so that Jesus might increase.

The things that we see happening in our world are the things that Jesus said, "When you see them happening, look up because our redemption is drawing near". Because of the lateness of the hour and the nearness of His return it is time to make sure we get our "houses" (lives) in order. When He returns we don't want to be caught like the five foolish virgins. Therefore, it is time to wake up and make sure you have oil in your lamps.

Have a great day. It's time to do that which tends to eternal life and not to do that which doesn't.

Monday, October 20, 2008

"He's Not Late"

"He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end." Ecclesiastes 3:11

Normally I like to have the devotional out a little earlier than this, but this morning I just was not able to do so. I for as I'm concerned, I'm "running late". But then I began to think about this in regard to the Lord. And I just want to remind you this morning that God is never late... He is always right on time!

When the children of Israel stood before the Red Sea with Pharaoh's army pressing upon them, it looked like God was late, but He wasn't-- He was right on time and opened up a way of deliverance for them. When He went to the tomb of Lazarus, Mary and Martha both said to Him, "Lord, if you had been here our brother would not have died." They accused Him of being late. Was He? No, He was right on time. Also with the three Hebrews in the fiery furnace, He wasn't late just because He showed up when they were "in" it instead of "before".

According to our time tables, it may feel as though the Lord is late in helping us, in meeting our need, in showing up in our situation, in giving us an answer... but He never is. He is a perfect God, who does everything perfectly and who does it at the perfect time. Just trust that about Him

Have a great day. His timing is always perfect.

Friday, October 17, 2008

"Hide The Mess"

"Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do." Hebrews 4:13

Yesterday as I was walking out of the laundry room- which happened to be a mess with clothes waiting to be washed, others waiting to be ironed and others waiting to be folded- the thought came to me,"When it's a mess, just close the door and nobody can see it." Immediately the Lord spoke something to my heart. Let me share it.

Doors are nice to have for many reasons. Yesterday it was nice to have a door to close off the laundry room from view so that no one could see the mess that was in there. Many of us have "messy" places in our lives and we try to "close the door" to keep them out of God's view because we don't want Him to see what's in there. This may work in the physical realm with real doors and rooms, but it doesn't work when you are talking about issues in our lives and trying to hide them from God. You can't hide anything from God- He sees everything, He knows everything, nothing is hid from Him.

What are you trying to "close off" from God's view? What is that "secret sin" that you are trying to hide from Him? What is it that you are hoping He won't see so that you don't have to deal with it? What is that neglected thing that you don't want exposed because you plan to do something about it later? It's nice to close a door to keep what's behind it from being revealed, but one day you have to go back and open it. Shutting the door to the laundry was only a "temporary" fix, I am going to have to open it at some point and deal with what is in there that needs to be dealt with. You can't keep the doors in your life closed forever, one day you are going to have to open them and deal with what's in there. Today would be a good time to do just that.

Have a great day. You can't close a door and think that God won't see so you might as well open it and let Him in.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

"He Heals All"

"But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5

Yesterday as I was praying for a friend who needs a healing the Lord revealed something about Himself that you probably already knew, and I guess I did, but never quiet looked at it that way. My friend was diagnosed with a certain illness. As I was praying that the Lord would heal her of that illness, I was praying His word about Him being the Healer and with His stripes we are healed. I was reminding the Lord Jesus that He took stripes on His body for her healing. Then I realized that at the time when He bore those stripes they had never heard about some of the diseases that we have today. There were diseases back then- issues of blood, palsy, leprosy, etc.- but what about Lou Garrett's disease, IBS, AIDS, diabetes? These diseases were unknown at that time.

This is the wonderful, awesome thing about God. Even before these diseases were known to mankind, they were known to Him. He saw them afar off and provided healing for them as well. He took stripes on His back to heal us of diseases that weren't even discovered yet! Let me confirm that. One of the names of God is Jehovah- Jireh, which not only means God is Provider, but it also means that He is the God who sees ahead and makes provision for. Even before the foundation of the world God saw ahead mankind's need for a Savior so He sent His Son to pay the price so that we could be saved. (He saw ahead and made provision for.) Even on the cross Jesus' heart was filled with joy because He saw ahead in time and saw those of us who would now have a way of access into His presence through His shed blood. At the cross, His blood was shed not only for those who were living then or had already lived, but it was shed for future generations yet to be born- for you and me who were afar off.

Because God is not divided- you cannot separate who He is- He is Healer and He is Provider and He is the God who sees ahead. Therefore, in the past He saw those in the future who would need a Savior, but He also, in the past, saw those who would need a Healer to heal them of future diseases. And at the cross those stripes He bore took care of the diseases that had already existed, that existed then and that would exist in the future and He provided healing for them. So take heart... they are all covered... even the ones that are yet to be discovered! He is the Great Physician!

Have a great day. He took care of everything- every sin issue, every disease--- past, present and future!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

"Big Signs"

"Bow thy heavens, O LORD, and come down: touch the mountains, and they shall smoke." Psalm 144:5

Bow the heavens, come down, touch the mountains and make them smoke- sounds to me like the Psalmist was asking for a display of God's awesome power in his situation. Have you ever been there? Desiring God to "rend the mountains", "send forth lightening", "shake the foundations of the earth" on your behalf? There are some situations that we go through that are so big, so trying, so difficult, so overwhelming, so impossible that we feel it will take all the power God has to intervene in the situation-- it will take nothing less than some great miraculous sign.

God has great power (all powerful)- beyond what we can comprehend. He does move in great and mighty ways- pulling down mountains, parting seas, sending fire from heaven, opening the ground up. But He does not always work like that in our situations. He doesn't have to, there is as much power in even the "thoughts" of God as there are in His "hand".

Jesus asked the people if it was easier to say "take up thy bed and walk, or thy sins be forgiven thee?". There was no "rending of the mountains" for this man, yet he received two miracles in Jesus' one word- salvation and healing. It is just as easy for God to do the miraculous through one word. God can move powerfully in your situation and He doesn't always have to do it through some great sign- He can just "breath" on it and it can change. He can meet the need through something as miraculous as putting money in a fishes mouth or by simply laying it on the heart of someone to bless you. He can give you confirmation through the miraculous watering of a fleece or simply by speaking, "Go" to your spirit. He can move through fire, through an earthquake, through the wind... or through a still small voice. His ways are so far above our ways and He will move on your behalf in the "best" way. If He doesn't "bow down the heavens" but chooses to move in another way- even a "small and simple way"- it is still God's great power at work and it is nothing less of a miracle.

Have a great day. God will move on your behalf in the best way- it may come through a great big manifestation or through one single word.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

"Embrace The Word"

"... thy word is truth." John 17:17b

I was awake very early this morning and the Lord began to speak to me something that He wanted me to share with you. It will not be a lengthy message this morning but one to the point.

He said that in light of the day we are living- with all the uncertainties, conflicts, confusion- we must be sure to embrace His word and hold it closely to our hearts. His word is the truth that will keep us. It will keep us from falling into error. It will keep us in peace. It will be an anchor for our souls. It will lead us on the right path.

It was as the Israelites listened to God's word (believed it and embraced it) concerning applying the blood to the doorposts of their houses that they were saved and the death angel passed them by. Listening to God's word- applying it, following it, embracing it, giving it first place- is just as critical to our well being- mostly our spiritual well being and the well being of our souls.

Have a great day. Embrace God's word and hold on to it tightly. It's the only sure and solid foundation in a time when everything else looks like shifting sand.

Monday, October 13, 2008

"For The First Time"

"And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight." Mark 10:51

Daily I thank the Lord for waking me up with all five senses, with a healthy body and a sound mind. I like to walk and pray when the weather permits. The other morning as I was walking and talking with the Lord, and thanking Him for the things I have already mentioned above, suddenly I became so overwhelmed with the fact that I had my five senses. As I was thanking Him for my hearing, it was as if I had been deaf and was hearing sound for the first time. I could hear the birds, the traffic on the road, I could hear a saw running in the distance, I could hear a dog barking, even the crickets chirping. The same thing happened when I began to thank the Lord for my eyesight. It was as if I had never seen before. I could see the leaves on the trees, the rocks on the ground, the squirrels running across the yard, and not only that but I was in my right mind and could identify color, I knew the trees were tall, the rocks felt hard, the flowers smelled sweet.

Like I said, I thank God for these "gifts" daily, but I often wonder if we don't take so much for granted. Even "small" things, even "common" things, even "natural" things. I was glad for the experience that I was having the other morning. It gave me a brand new appreciation for the physical blessings I have that I should take more notice of.

If I were blind, or deaf, or could not recall my own daughter's name, or did not recognize my husband, if I had woke up in a mental institution this morning, or had a chronic illness in my body, I certainly would miss these blessings. So I don't want to neglect to be thankful for them while I have them. I think it would do us all good to look at the blessings we have in our lives- whether they are physical, spiritual or in the area of relationships- as if we were looking at them for the first time, and in light of how it would be if we didn't have them. Perhaps we would live with more gratitude and less complaining.

Have a great day. Look at your world today as if you were seeing, hearing, feeling it for the first time after not being able to. Would you see it differently?

Friday, October 10, 2008

"I Am"

"And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you." Exodus 3:14

When the Lord revealed Himself to Moses out of the burning bush, He identified Himself as "I AM". He didn't say "He WAS" or "He WILL BE". He identified Himself in the present tense. God is the God of the NOW. He's not just God who was in your past and He isn't God who is way off in your future somewhere. He is the God of the here and now.

Now He is what you need. Now He is Savior, Lord, Redeemer, Deliverer. He is the God who heals now. He is the God who meets and supplies needs now. He is the God who makes a way now. He has said that is He a present God- a present help in time of trouble- so it's time we start taking Him out of our past and bring Him into our present. It's time we stop always looking forward to the day "when", and start looking to Him now.

Where have you put God? Is He stuck in your past- all you can do is reminisce about what He used to do, or what He did once upon a time? Have you placed Him somewhere in your future- one day He'll heal me, one day He'll meet the need, etc. Yes, I know that God has a plan, a season and a timing for some things to happen, but there are so many other things that God desires to do for us now and He would do if we would bring Him into our present situations.

Have a great day. He is a present God who desires to move on your behalf in the present.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

"Reason Or Excuse?"

"The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing." Proverbs 20:4

I had a very wise old minister tell me one time that there is a difference between a "reason" and an "excuse". We may or may not have a good reason as to why we did or didn't do something. But an excuse is not necessarily a good reason- usually it's something that we use to try to justify what we don't want to do. Excuses, more often than not, are "convenient".

We tend to have more excuses than reasons when it comes to neglecting spiritual matters. We can always come up with an excuse as to why we can't read our Bibles- (I'm too tired). Usually that's only an "excuse" because we aren't too tired to stay up half the night watching television or playing computer games. How about getting up to pray? (It's too cold, it's too early.) That's more of an excuse than a reason because it's not too cold or too early to get up and travel to a doctor's appointment, or go to the once a year flea market, or go to our morning exercise class. How about church attendance? (Sunday is my only day to sleep in, I don't like the songs they sing, nobody talks to me at that church.) You tell me- reason or excuse? What about other areas? What keeps you from dong what the Lord has called you to do? Is it a reason? Or is it an excuse? When it comes to doing the will and plan of God, we have no excuses or reasons not to. If it's a real "reason" standing in the way, He knows how to remove it, rearrange it, cause it to work for good to accomplish it. If it's an excuse, He knows the difference, and it won't work on Him either.

Excuses are a "dime a dozen", you can always find one. I tend to think that the sluggard in the verse above had a good reason not to plow- it was cold. (In my limited knowledge of farming you plant in spring and fall not in winter when it's cold.) What happened was he used so many excuses not to plow and plant that his excuses caused him to put it off for so long that when he finally decided to do it it was too late. If you keep making excuses you can find yourself missing the opportunity and then it will be too late. Too many people do this with their eternal souls. They give one excuse after another why they won't be saved- or, not "right now" but will do it later. Later may be too late.

Have a great day. Is your "reason" really an "excuse"?

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

"Too Busy To Eat"

"As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby." 1 Peter 2:2

My little granddaughter has reached the stage where she is "busy"- she doesn't just sit still any more, she wants to explore everything. This makes feeding her a real challenge. She's too "busy" looking around- she likes to look behind her, at the floor, at the ceiling, and she doesn't want to sit still either, she is constantly trying to get out of her high chair. You almost have to "chase" her little mouth down to find it and give her her food.

My little granddaughter has to eat physical food in order to get the nutrition her body needs to develop properly and grow. We also have to have spiritual food so our spirit man will grow and develop. But too many of us are like she is when it comes to "eating" our meal. We are too busy "exploring" other things to sit down and eat and drink from God's word. If we aren't eating natural food we will suffer from malnutrition. If we aren't eating God's word we will suffer from spiritual malnutrition.

There is one difference between the two. If she doesn't eat well or skips a day she won't have malnutrition, it comes through a process of neglecting to eat. Where the spirit man is concerned, if you go without eating the spiritual meat of God's word, spiritual malnutrition begins to take place immediately- it doesn't come through a long process of neglect. This is why we can't afford to miss even one day of reading God's word.

Where are you today? Is God having to "chase" you down to get you to read His word? Are you too busy exploring (involved in) other things to take time to "eat"? If so, this is why you are feeling "spiritually sluggish"- you're experiencing symptoms of malnutrition. Get back to the "table" and "eat". Spiritual malnutrition can be reversed, but you have to start eating and keep eating.

Have a great day. You can't be so busy with other things that you neglect to "eat" God's word- your spiritual well being depends on it.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

"Apply Truth"

"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:32

If the truth makes us free, then why are so many who hear the truth of God's word still not free? Freedom comes as we receive the truth. It doesn't just come automatically. It doesn't come if you reject it. It's like soap. Soap has the power to cleanse. If you are dirty, you can take soap and water and wash away the dirt, grim, perspiration and impurities on your body, but if you don't "apply" it to your body you will remain dirty. It's not the soap's inability to clean you, it's your lack of use.

The Pharisees are a prime example of this. They had the truth- they had the written word of God. But they also had the living word of God. Jesus walked and talk with them but yet they still stayed in bondage- bondage to religious traditions, to pride and arrogance, to deception and self righteousness. Jesus, who is THE Truth, walked among them, testifying of God's word and power to set free and they still remained in bondage because they rejected what He said in exchange for their own teachings and and sinful desires.

God's word is powerful, it can and will set captives free, it will bring us into liberty, it will show us the way to eternal and abundant life, but only as we receive it and apply it to our lives. If we don't, then we will remain in bondage, we will believe a lie and we won't walk in freedom.

Have a great day. Truth received and applied sets us free- "Thy Word is Truth".

Monday, October 6, 2008

"Job's Wife"

"Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die." Job 2:9

When you read the story of Job, did you ever wonder why God didn't allow Job's wife to be taken from him? After all, he lost all his livestock, his servants, his children and his health- he lost everything except his wife. Of all the things that the Lord could have left him with, why did He leave a wife that was anything less than edifying, why leave him with someone who was going to discourage him by encouraging him to curse God and die? Why didn't He at least leave him with someone who could help comfort him, someone who would minister to him, someone who would pray with him and help lift his burden?

The answer is not clear until you look at the end of the book. "He had also seven sons and three daughters." (Job 42:1) When God restored everything that Job lost, the restoration included children. Let me ask you a question: How was God going to give Job back children without someone to bare those children? God kept Job's wife because she was the instrument through which part of Job's restoration and his blessing was going to come.

It makes me think about Paul's thorn in the flesh. Paul prayed for it's removal but God didn't remove it. What seemed as a "bad" thing to Paul was actually an instrument used by God to bring something greater into Paul's life.

Sometimes those things that we think are a "curse" in our life, sometimes those things that we think the Lord should take away, sometimes those things in our lives that look like they are against us, are actually the very thing that God is going to use to bring a blessing into our lives through. Job's wife was part of the restoration process. The thorn in Paul's flesh was an instrument to cause the power of Christ to rest upon him. That thing in your life that you think is a hindrance or obstacle to God's plan for your life may actually be part of the process to bring about God's plan for your life.

Have a great day. What looks like a curse, may actually be the thing that brings the blessing.

Friday, October 3, 2008


"A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones." Proverbs 17:22

I was talking with a dear sister in the Lord last night. She was sharing with me about how her body is going through lots of pain, it just seems as though her body is "breaking down"- she is having one physical problem after another. She also shared with me about the stress she is under at work. We have talked on several occasions and I have been amazed at what she is going through at work- the work load, the late hours, the criticism and hateful comments from fellow employees. I told her it was no wonder her body is manifesting all these physical problems-- a broken spirit dries the bones (produces death).

Stress will effect your body. We were not designed to carry the loads that we are being put under daily. God never intended us to have to shoulder the weight of the world. We should have peace, joy, tranquility surrounding us. Oh, I know that we have tribulations and problems in this life, but how much of it is "self inflicted"; how much can be avoided if we would make a few simple adjustments and cut out some unnecessary things that help put us under more stress?

I want to encourage you- as I did her- get out from under the stress. Let go of the "extra" as much as you possibly can. But the main thing I want to say is--- Praise, Praise, Praise! Get some praise music, turn it on, sit down, listen to it, and sing along with it, get your focus solely on the Lord. Let the praise of God renew your mind and refresh your body. The praise lifts your heart and spirit and actually puts "moisture" (life) back into your bones. Praise produces a merry heart (a light heart), and a merry heart is like a medicine.

Have a great day. Give the stress you are under a good does of praise.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

"You Have Power"

"My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.." Hosea 4:6a

Oh, here we go again. I need to clear something up again this morning. I really get tired of hearing preachers tell us that if we really want power and authority we need to get their book, or we need to support their ministry, or we need to send them an offering. It is so sad that we have "swallowed" so much of what we are taught and don't know the truth for ourselves.

You don't have to do all the things they tell you to do in order to receive something that you already possess. They try to make you think that it is only for the "elite" few or they try to place so many conditions on you in order to receive this power. If you are born again, blood bought, a child of God then you have been given power and authority. You already possess it- you don't have to wait for them (some man) to give it to you. In the Garden of Eden God gave mankind dominion (reign, authority, power). Adam lost it through rebellion, but Jesus Christ got it back through obedience at the cross. Absolute authority belongs to Him only but He has delegated authority to His followers in order to carry out His work in the earth-- Jesus gave it to you. (Luke 10:19; Matt. 16:19; Matt. 29:18,19; Acts 1:8; Matt. 10:1)

Same way with the anointing. You don't have to have someone lay their hands on you to receive the anointing. You don't have to wait for some great name evangelist to impart an anointing to you. You don't have to wait to be called out or prophesied over to receive an anointing from God. You already have the anointing too. (1 John 2:20,27; 2 Cor. 1:21) The Anointed One (Christ Jesus) lives inside of you. You can't get much more anointed than that- although you can yield in greater degrees to the anointing that resides in you.

In the garden Adam and Eve believed the lie when the serpent said that if they ate they would become like god. The saddest part was that they were already like God. Not God, but like Him- formed in His image, having dominion over the earth, clothed in His glory, Adam even named the animals on God's behalf, walked on the same level with God and they were sinless and holy. They lost what they had because they didn't realize they already had it. The same is happening to us-- we are losing out waiting for someone to give us what we already have.

Have a great day. Start doing what God has called you to do and stop waiting for someone else to give you what you already possess through Christ.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

"Consider The Lilies"

"And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:" Matthew 6:28

As I woke up this morning, the first thing I did was ask the Lord what to write to you this morning. He spoke as clearly as a bell to me and said these words, "You have a heavenly Father who loves you and promises to be with you "even into the end of the world". He is there with you, watching over you whether you feel like He is or not, whether you see Him and even if you don't see any evidence that He is there." The second thing He said to me for you this morning He said in a song. Oh, my, I can't tell you how long it's been since I heard this song--- literally years. I want to sing it to you this morning, but it's not from me, it's from your heavenly Father to you.

Consider the lilies; they don't toil or spin,
But there's not a king with more splendor than them.
Consider the sparrows; they don't plant nor sow,
But they're fed by the Master who watches them grow.

We have a Heavenly Father above
With eyes full of mercy and a heart full of love.
He really cares when your head is bowed low;
Consider the lilies, then you will know.

May I introduce you to this Friend of mine
Who hangs out the stars, tells the sun when to shine.
And kisses the flowers each morning with dew,
Oh, but friend, He's not too busy to care about you!

We have a Heavenly Father above
With eyes full of mercy and a heart full of love.
He really cares when your head is bowed low;
Consider the lilies, then you will know.
Consider the lilies, then you will know.

If you ever doubt the Father's love, if you begin feeling as though He does not care, when you feel so alone, when you wonder if He is listening, if you doubt His ability to take care of you, if you begin to feel like He's not even there- He's left you, consider the lilies. Go look at the flowers, the trees, the grass that grows, even the weeds and remember that God watches over them and gives them everything they need to grow, He sees them at each stage of their life- beginning, middle and end. If God watches over the lilies, then He watches over you... you are of MUCH more value to Him than the lilies are.

Have a great day. Consider the lilies.