Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Being Trustworthy

“If there were prophets among you,
I, the Lord, would reveal myself in visions.
I would speak to them in dreams.
But not with my servant Moses.
Of all my house, he is the one I trust.
I speak to him face to face,
clearly, and not in riddles!
He sees the Lord as he is."
Numbers 12:6-8 NLT

I was impressed by this passage of scripture. It made me stop and do some self reflection. Moses' brother and sister were complaining about him. The Lord heard their complaints, and went to Moses' defence. He not only defended Moses, but he struck Moses sister with a case of leprosy.

What really strikes me about this passage is what the Lord says about Moses; "Of all my house, he is the one I trust. I speak to him face to face,clearly, and not in riddles!He sees the Lord as he is." The Lord said he trusted Moses. Moses wasn't perfect. He made mistakes. But, God said he trusted Moses. Because Moses was trustworthy, he had a very special relationship with God.

I have to ask myself am I trustworthy? Do I have the humility and integrity that pleases God? Not always. I wish I did. I'm grateful to the grace and love of God that helps me overcome my weaknesses. I'm a work in progress. I'm grateful for the work of the Holy Spirit in my life. I want to be the kind of person that the Lord looks at and finds trustworthy.

Jesus has made it possible for us to have the kind of relationship that Moses had with the Lord. By his grace we have a righteous standing before God. Through the cleansing ministry of the Holy Spirit those character flaws in me are overcome. But the greatest thing is that through Jesus, we can all have a up close and very personal relationship with God.

So how about some self reflection? Are you trustworthy? What is it about your character, lifestyle, and habits, that makes you worthy or unworthy of God's trust. Be real. We all have issues. So here is the key; trust in Jesus, the one who makes us worthy.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Fulfilling Your Calling

"For after David had done the will of God in his own generation, he died and was buried with his ancestors." Acts 13:36 NLT

What is the Lord's will for your life? It is His will that all come to salvation. It is His will to bless us. It is His will that we worship and glorify Him. But what specifically is His will for you?

The Bible says that after David had done the will of God in his own generation, he died. He had completed his purpose. From the line of David our savior Jesus would come into the world. David knew what his purpose in life was and he completed it. Many of us wander from one event, one addiction, one relationship, one job, to another, always searching for our purpose and the meaning of our life.

The Bible says; "For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago." Ephesians 2:10 NLT

Our first step in recognizing our call is to have a relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Next, what has God put on your heart? What are you compelled to do? What cause stirs your heart? What talents do other Christ-followers see in you? What need is God calling you to meet? What strengths and personal failures have prepared you for God's purpose in your life?

None of us are here by accident. We are here for a purpose greater than ourselves. Ask God to confirm His purpose for you. Maybe it is taking a step of obedience in a certain direction. Then as you go, God will reveal more to you.

Remember, God uses the weak and foolish things of the "world" to bring Him glory. If you feel inadequate to the call He has for you, good! That means you have more room in your life for His Holy Spirit to operate.

May it be said of us that we fulfilled God's will in our generation!

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of His return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to His appearing." 2Timothy 4:7,8 NLT

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Invitation

"I no longer call you slaves, for a master doesn't confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, for I have told you everything that the Father has told me." John 15:15 NLT

We are a people that need to have relationships. God created us that way. And if you think of it isn't that the way God is? He created us in His image.

The reason that this verse spoke to me this morning is this--I fear that we may tend to have the feeling that God is waaaaay up there, above the clouds and we are waaaaay down here under the clouds. And after all, isn't He the dictator, and we the subjects?

That's not where He is at. How do we know? He sent His son, Jesus to make our relationship right. Jesus is our atonement--our olive branch.

Jesus doesn't want a hands-off relationship--no, totally the opposite. He wants us to include Him in everything, in every emotion, in every second of every day. In the good, the bad and the ugly. He wants it all.

"Now you are my friends." I'm not worthy to be Jesus' friend. Accept His friendship anyway. I have issues I need to make right. Excuses. Don't you think He knows that? He wants you anyway--the very spot you are in. I don't know how. Just be. Talk to Him. Tell Him everything. Be open to His leading and He will guide you.

Jesus is inviting you into a relationship with Him. Will you accept?

Thursday, May 20, 2010


"He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say of the LORD, "He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust."

Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare
and from the deadly pestilence.

He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,

nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.

A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.

You will only observe with your eyes
and see the punishment of the wicked.

If you make the Most High your dwelling—
even the LORD, who is my refuge-

then no harm will befall you,
no disaster will come near your tent.

For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;

they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.

You will tread upon the lion and the cobra;
you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

"Because loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him;
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.

He will call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honor him.

With long life will I satisfy him
and show him my salvation."
Psalm 91 NIV

This is one of my favorite psalms. Over the years it has been a source of strength, hope, and comfort. This psalm speaks to the incredible victory that we have in Christ,and His love and care.

There are so many promises in this passage. But they come with a condition; dwelling. We must dwell, live, remain in God's presence. We must make Him our shelter.

The key to a victorious life in Christ is to remain in close relationship with Him. Jesus said that if we remain in Him, He will remain in us.

There are many things in life that will try to pull us away from Jesus. The cares of life, crisis, sickness, pleasure, just to name a few. But it is imperative that we stay close to Christ. We find that as we draw close to Him, He is already drawing close to us.

What is trying to draw you away from Christ? How will you respond?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

From Where He Speaks

"Whenever Moses went into the Tabernacle to speak with the Lord, he heard the voice speaking to him from between the two cherubim above the Ark’s cover—the place of atonement—that rests on the Ark of the Covenant. The Lord spoke to him from there." Numbers 7:89 NLT

Moses would go into the Tabernacle. The Tabernacle was the place of worship before the Temple was built. Not everyone was allowed in the Tabernacle. The Bible says Moses would speak to God. God would speak with Moses from the place of atonement. The word atonement means reconciliation; reparation for an offense or injury; cleansing. The place of atonement was the covering of the Ark of the Covenant. The Ark represented the Lord's covenant with the Israelites.

I think this is a beautiful and prophetic picture of our relationship with God. Jesus sacrifice at the cross is our atonement. We are now under the New Covenant of grace. Think of it. Let this truth resonant deep within you. When you approach God, it is from a place of acceptance and grace. This is true for everyone that has a relationship with Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

Where do you hear God speaking to you from? Is it the seat of judgment, or the mercy seat of His grace?

"For I pass on to you what I received from the Lord himself. On the night when he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and said, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this to remember me.” In the same way, he took the cup of wine after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood. Do this to remember me as often as you drink it.” For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are announcing the Lord’s death until he comes again." 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 NLT

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

What! I'm Beautiful?

"But the Lord told him, 'Samuel, don't think Eliab is the one just because he's tall and handsome. He isn't the one I've chosen. People judge others by what they look like, but I judge people by what is in their hearts.'"
1 Samuel 16:7 CEV

Let this verse give you peace. Those of you who fall into the trap of thinking that you aren't pretty enough, good-looking enough, for whatever the world is saying that you need to be.

A friend said to me the other day, that in order to help people remember her name, she would associate her name with that of a beautiful actress that had the same name, even though she knew that she herself wasn't as beautiful as the actress.

When I got home, I thought, you know that is so sad. Because, not only is this friend beautiful on the outside in her own right--inside--her heart and spirit, she is just knock-out gorgeous. And isn't that what counts?

Male or female, beautiful or common, genius or not, does God care? No. What does God care about? Your spiritual heart. He created you--the good the bad and the ugly. The world cares about the surface--which can change in a heartbeat. But your heavenly Father cares about the deeper beauty--your eternity.

Accept your place in your Father's family and know that you and you alone are His and as you strive to worship, serve and love Him with your whole heart and soul, your are the most beautiful person in His sight.

He doesn't create mistakes.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wake Up, Get Up, and Walk in Freedom!

"The night before Peter was to be placed on trial, he was asleep, fastened with two chains between two soldiers. Others stood guard at the prison gate. 7 Suddenly, there was a bright light in the cell, and an angel of the Lord stood before Peter. The angel struck him on the side to awaken him and said, 'Quick! Get up!' And the chains fell off his wrists."
Acts 12:6-7 NLT

Peter was about to be executed. He had been arrested for being a leader in the Christian movement. The night before his "trial" he was sleeping. But the Church was praying for his release. God hears the prayers of his people. He sent an angel to rescue Peter. Peter is rescued and the rest is history.

There are some truths that we should glean from this passage. The most obvious is that the Church was praying for Peter. The need for prayer and the power of prayer cannot be overemphasised. God's answer to his peoples prayer is evident. But I want us to focus on verse seven and three points of application.

1."The angel struck him on the side to awaken him." We must wake up. Peter had to wake up. So do we. Some of you are in bondage physically, spiritually, and emotionally. Those in the Church have been praying for your release. But you are asleep. You are dozing off. You are dozing in self pity, denial, complacency, fear, pain, and pride. It's time to wake up to the move of God in your life!

2. “Quick! Get up!” We need to get up. You need to wake up to the move of God in your life that wants to set you free. Then you must respond by getting up. Chose not to stay in your prison. Believe Christ has the power to set you free. In an act of faith stand up to your issues and get ready to leave your prison cell. Do it quickly. Do not linger in your bondage.

3. "And the chains fell off his wrists." It wasn't until Peter woke up and stood up that his chains fell off. We must believe that God hears and answers the prayers of his people. We must wake up to the reality of the bondage we are in. By faith in Jesus, we take a stand. Then the chains fall off and we walk in freedom.

"Father, I pray that we wake to your grace in our lives. I pray that we take s stand against our captor in the name and power of Jesus. I pray that as the chains fall off we will live in the freedom Christ brings us. With thankfulness and in the name of Jesus."

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Spiritual Training

"Fathers, do not make your children angry, but raise them with the training and teaching of the Lord." Ephesians 6:4 (New Century Version)

Today I caught my 9 year old in a lie. It was just a 'little lie,' but a lie nonetheless. He had it all justified in his 9 year old mind--he didn't want his older brother to get mad at him and take away the privilege of playing on his computer game.

So, here I am faced with this child of mine, with big crocodile tears running down his freckled face. I knew that I had to punish him for the lie, no matter how small. His spirit's fate depended on it. But, oh, how hard it was. So even though my mother's heart wanted to just hold him and dry his tears, I couldn't. I had to do the right thing--train him in the way of his & my Lord.

Just this past Sunday, Pastor Eric talked about this issue. Christian mothers having to be strong and consistent in the upbringing of our children. So, instead of his brother taking away the privilege, I had to.

Do you think your heavenly Father goes through this? When we stray, when we do wrong, when we sin against Him, He has to punish us. Does He enjoy punishing us? I truly don't think so. But, just as I had to tell Joey, if I didn't love him so much, I wouldn't punish Him. I wouldn't care how his spirit was being trained or what kind of man he would grow up becoming. It is because of my great love for him and for my Lord, that I have to. The same is with your God. If He didn't care about your spirit or your heart, He would just let you flounder through this world. But because of His great love, not only did He die for you, He punishes you when you do wrong so you have a lesson learned.

Is it easy being a godly parent? No! But is it worth it? Most definitely yes. When you hear your child talk God--it makes a parent's spiritual heart explode. Your God has the same feelings--when you get the picture and finally catch the lesson learned--is He proud of you? You better believe it!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Power of a Name

"Every child of God can defeat the world, and our faith is what gives us this victory."
1 John 5:4 CEV

Were you ever that little child on the school playground that everyone would pick on? The bullies would mess with your locker, the girls would giggle behind your back? Or were you the only Christian in your family and whenever the T.V. evangelists would come on, they would mock you, saying, "there's your religion!"

There are many ways that we, as children of God, have been crucified for our faith--our belief. Of course, not to the extreme that our Lord Jesus has, but crucified all the same.

Sometimes it can make you feel so lonely. It can make you feel unloved and a 'weirdo'. Do what's right anyway. Remember that your Heavenly Father lives inside of you and with Him on your side, does anything else matter?

Doesn't it give you such peace to know that if you are a child of Christ, you will have victory over all the earth? That no matter what the world or Satan throws at you, that you will be victorious through your Heavenly Father? You don't need prestige, you don't need to buy yourself out of trouble, you don't need to be devious. All you need to do is call on the holy name of your Lord and Savior and you will be victorious.

The power of a name--Jesus Christ. Please use it humbly and often.

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Pond of Life

"But Jesus spoke to them at once. 'Don’t be afraid,' he said. 'Take courage. I am here!'
Then Peter called to him, 'Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.' 'Yes, come,' Jesus said.
So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. 'Save me, Lord!' he shouted.
Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. 'You have so little faith,' Jesus said. 'Why did you doubt me?' When they climbed back into the boat, the wind stopped." Matthew 14:27-32 NLT

Sometimes when we are going through trials and tribulations, we tend to get nervous, uncertain what to do next or where to go. We are in the pond of life and the waves are coming at us. But if we have a relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ, we should be able to walk on top of the waves, water. The water in this verse can resemble our life's journey--the waves, it's troubles.

If we call upon our Lord, if we have faith in Him and His ability to care for us, we will always walk on top of the water. It's when we start to doubt His commitment to us and we start to try to help ourselves that we start sinking. Sinking into the muck and mire of self-doubt, self-help and self-reliance. We can't do 'self.' There is no room in your Christian walk for 'self' doing. It is selfish and unproductive.

As long as you have your focus on Jesus and His influence in your life, no matter what happens, what wave, what ripple, mares the surface of your pond of life--you won't succumb to the hopeless of life. Living a God-centered, God-controlled life will give you a guarantee of success.

Do you remember the song, "Standing on the Promises of God?" It's not just a song you know. It true. You can stand on the promises of your God. There is a book full of them that He has written just for you--it's called the Bible. All you have to do is open it, read the words on the pages, accept them in your heart and believe them in your soul.

The Bible--when your pond is full of waves, it's your life boat--reach out and grasp it with all your might and never let go.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Quiet Time

"But Jesus would often go to some place where he could be alone and pray." Luke 5:16 CEV

When was the last time that you allowed yourself to have quiet time with your Lord? No, I mean it--true quiet time? Time that is just for you and Him. Time when you are not looking at your watch every 20 minutes. Time when you are all tensed up because you have to get this done. All relationships need some one-on-one, focus on each other time. Why do we not think our relationship with our Father would be any different?

We keep ourselves so busy. We barely have time to do what we need to do--but this is one area that we, you, should not fudge on. It puts everything in alignment when you do. It should be a time when you can sit and just be. It may be when you have your Bible in hand. It may be when you are on your knees praying. It may be when you are just sitting. Sitting with nothing on the radio or T.V. Listening with your spirit to the words of your Father. Feeling the presence of Him wrapping Himself around you.

Quiet time can take many forms and there is no wrong or right one. You may experience a different form each time you have one. The only wrong one is not having one.

If it was important enough for Jesus to do, shouldn't that tell us that it is important for you?

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Lesson of the Ladybug

"So be strong and courageous,
all you who put your hope in the Lord!" Psalm 31:24 NLT

Yesterday I was sitting in the sun and noticed the ladybugs. They were doing what ladybugs do best--climbing and crawling and then flying away. Well, this one ladybug that was closest to me was doing that--except whenever they tried to fly away--WHAM, they would hit the blade of grass right next door. They weren't gliding gracefully to the forest of grass a few feet away like the other ladybugs were.

So, what did she do? Did she give up? No! She, (and it was a she because this ladybug had spots, and you know that's the rule. Spots, girl. No spots, boy), climbed up to the top of this blade and flew. Again, WHAM. Hit the blade just next door. Now this blade was a little taller, but not quite tall enough.

Well, this happened about four times. And each time, it landed on a blade that was a little taller, but not quite tall enough to get her out of the forest so she could fly free. On the fifth try, I could see that she was going to make it because it was the tallest blade in the grove. And she did. She got the the very top of that blade, spread her red wings and flew gracefully to the next forest of blades.

The Lord spoke to me. He said that is how we are to Him at times. Especially when we first come to Him. But it can also happen at various times during our relationship adventure with Him. We know what we are supposed to do. It's instinct. But things can get in our way. It could be bad choices, the wrong mind set, attitude, or just pure ignorance. Whatever it is, it can cause us to not be where or what God wants us to be. Like the ladybug, we instinctly know what we should do, but there are obstacles in our way.

Do you give up? NO! Through the obstacles, the Lord will strengthen you and guide you until, at the point when you are ready, He will allow you to get to the very top of your blade of grass and fill your wings with grace, courage, a little more wisdom and beauty indescribable to the naked eye--and set you gliding to the next station in life He has planned for you. Isn't that so humbling awesome?

So, whenever you think that this Christian 'thing' is too hard. That you weren't cut out for being one of God's chosen--Remember, two things. First and foremost, He had chosen you before you were even born. Secondly, you are not alone. If it came too easily, the gift of grace wouldn't have been needed.

Think of these things the next time you see a ladybug. Your Lord is everywhere!