Even God Took A Day to #Rest — 

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Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.” He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and His apostles didn’t even have time to eat. (Mark 6:31)~ How many hours do you think you work a week? 50? 70? It’s amazing if I chart the hours I work each week, counting the times I work at home, not just the projects, but the conference calls and late calls (including checking voicemail and e-mail). It’s a wonder I even have time to stop and eat, especially when I add the things I do at home to the mix. When do you get a chance to refresh, renew and replenish your life, your spirit, your health, your body. People say you only live once, but are you living or just working yourself to an early grave? Grandma used to tell me in her own ’southern’ draw “baby you ain’t no iron – you got to rest”. Now, years later I realize what she meant by that. There are some of us that think we can’t function unless we are going 100 MPH with our hair on fire! It is a trick of the enemy to make you overwork and be so busy occupied with the things of this life; careers, activities, events and busy-work; that you miss going through this life! And you work your mind and body so much you become exhausted to the point that your body can’t respond to the call of the Spirit. You might think you’re living a great life by being so busy and always on the move and always doing this or that, but is your life really fulfilling? You’re so busy that you gather impressions but have no experiences, you make acquaintances but make no friends, you attend events and church and meetings but experience no encounter…your work is never done. You’re keeping up so much NOISE that you miss that still, small voice of the Lord speaking to you… I think you get the point… How’s that really working for you? Look my friend, we all know that on the seventh day, God rested (Gen 2:2). But, God did not rest as one weary (because we know the Lord never sleeps or slumbers), but as one well pleased. He took that day of rest to stop and reflect. There has to be a point in your life where you shut it down – take that vacation, that weekend, that day off…and enjoy the blessings around you. There are benefits to what God placed before you and there is output even from your own works…that you need to get to enjoy. What’s so great about all that you work so hard for if you can’t enjoy it? That career..will be there when you get back. Those people that depend on you so much, will manage and might even impress you with their resourcefulness. Yes, you only live once but I often see this when I think about all I just HAVE to do: My family knows I’m doing it FOR them, but sometimes, they’d love to just have me doing it WITH them! SO I’m about to! Please friend, take some time and REST…GOD did it…Jesus did it…and I’m about to do it…why can’t you???

Now Or Later We Must Make a #Choice- 

He that is unrighteous, let him do unrighteousness still: and he that is filthy, let him be made filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him do righteousness still: and he that is holy, let him be made holy still (Rev22:11)~~ All is confirmed by an open and general invitation to all mankind, to come and partake “freely” of the promises and of the privileges of the gospel. The Spirit, by the sacred word, and by convictions and influence in the sinner’s conscience, says, Come to Christ for salvation; and the bride, or the whole church, on earth and in heaven, says, Come and share our happiness. Let whosoever will, come and take of the water of life freely. May every one who hears or reads these words, desire at once to accept the gracious invitation. God does not and will not force us to be reconciled with Him, but places within us enough grace that we would desire to do so in our own hearts, that we would personally and individually know, in our own recognizance the glory and joy of His eternal salvation. By our own free choice, we will be what we will be. His Word, though, spoken on all of our souls, will have effect upon men; in one way or another…in full acceptance or rejection. The filthy and unjust will be more so, but it will confirm, strengthen, and further sanctify those who are upright with God. Never let us think that a dead or disobedient faith will save us, for the First and the Last has declared that those alone are blessed who do His commandments. It’s clear that while we have a choice, there is an eternal consequence for that choice. We MUST choose…There is no middle place or condition. And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve …But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Josh 24:15).

Go Ahead and Give; God Won’t Let You #TapOut

But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work..(2 Cor 9:6-8)~~ When God gives to us He gives His best… And is happy to do it…He knows what we need and what we want and He gives out of His goodness, not because we are deserving. When we ask of Him, He is pleased to hear us and gives into our lives with grace and abundance. We are not to be reservoirs of selfishness..hoarders of this goodness, but to give of that which with we are blessed… Sowing into good ground… For the good of others. So what do we give and how do we give it? Are we generous with our goodness from the heart or do we only give what we think someone is worthy of? Do we give just to say we did it or do we give because we like to see others blessed like we are and we enjoy giving to that cause? Do we give with an attitude because we feel obligated or because we truly want to share blessings that we can give? Some of us act like giving of ourselves, financially or not…yes, even the non-financial type of giving, is a burden; and our response to it is quite ungrateful of our own benefit and disrespectful to our divine benefactor! It’s not that giving weakens our own stature, but that the very thought of giving puts us out. News flash: God doesn’t NEED you to give the money He blessed you with the ability to earn, He doesn’t NEED the joy that the efforts of your skills, time or words can put into someone else’s life. But remember– What you release into the world, you will receive back…and you will reap MORE than what you sow.. This is God’s guarantee! And what you hold back, will be held back from you. God’s blessing is about overflow…the more He can get through you, the more He will get TO you. And this is not just about money… Want more joy, peace or love in your life? Try giving some away! You will never run dry of the fruits of the Spirit because God will keep it flowing to you! Now if God can’t get a blessing through you … What if He were to stop sending it TO you? Next time there’s an opportunity to put something good into someone’s life’ just remember, God won’t let you tap out! 

Don’t Believe The Hype #TheDevilIsALie – 

There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death (Prov 16:25)~ The enemy blinds the eyes of unbelievers, causing absurd reasonings in matters of religion. Whether men seek happiness in worldly things, or run into unbelief, superstition, or any false system, they feed on ashes…remnants of that which has been “created”, used and reshaped by man. The ideals of people and society have changed the truth of God into a lie, and people have come to worship and serve their own ways more than the Word of God (Rom1:25).  They have convinced themselves the Bible is foolish, hopelessly outdated, or written by religious fanatics. They love their own thoughts so much they will not accept correction from God nor His ambassadors! 

A heart deceived by pride, love of sin, and departure from God, turns us aside from His holy truth and worship. It’s gotten so that people hold fast to the ‘lie’ as the best treasure. Today’s  hearts are set upon the wealth of the world and its pleasures. We must be careful to what we hold dear to our heart and soul! If we trust to outward professions and doings, as if those would save us, we deceive ourselves. He feedeth on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand? (Isa 44:20)

God Gives Us #Favor in the Fire –

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Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated (Dan 3:19); “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God (Dan 3:25)~~ Let Nebuchadnezzar heat his furnace as hot as he can, a few minutes will finish the torment of those cast into it; but hell-fire tortures, and yet does not kill. Those who worshipped the beast and his image, have no rest, no pause, no moment free from pain, (Rev 14:10,11). Now was fulfilled in the letter that great promise, When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned. Leaving it to that God who preserved them in the fire, to bring them out, they walked up and down in the midst, supported and encouraged by the presence of the Son of God. Those who suffer for Christ, have his presence in their sufferings, even in the fiery furnace, and in the valley of the shadow of death (Ps 23:4). Nebuchadnezzar owns them for servants of the most high God; a God able to deliver them out of his hand. It is our God only is the consuming fire, (Heb 12:29). Could we but see into the eternal world, we should behold the persecuted believer safe from the malice of his foes, while they are exposed to the wrath of God, and tormented in unquenchable fires. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you (Isa 43:2) – Brother and Sister – When you walk with God in Faith – NOTHING you encounter in this life shall consume you, overtake you or destroy you. But He will be with you IN it and will see you THROUGH it!  Blessed be the Name of the Lord! 

#Trust in the Lord and He will give you #Rest –

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There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from His (Heb 4:9-10)~~ God has always declared man’s rest to be in Him, and His love to be the only real happiness of the soul; and faith in His promises, through His Son, to be the only way of entering that rest. There is, in Him, a more spiritual and excellent rest remaining than that of the seventh day. This rest is, a rest of grace, and comfort, and holiness, in the gospel state. The rest, is undoubtedly the heavenly rest, which remains to the people of God, and is opposed to a state of labor and trouble in this world. It is the rest they shall obtain when the Lord Jesus shall appear from Heaven. As God finished His work, and then rested from it, so He will cause those who believe, to finish their work, and then to enjoy their rest. But those who do not believe, shall never enter into this spiritual rest, either of grace here or glory hereafter. True Sabbath..that holy rest, the kind that empties us of our works and fills us with the blessings of God’s completed works, depends on complete confidence and trust….rooted in a deep conviction that God is good and God is sovereign. There’s no rest for those who don’t believe that. If God works all things together for good for those who love Him and are called to His purposes (Rom 8:28), you can relax. If He doesn’t, you had better start worrying. If God can pick any mess, any mishap, any wastage, any wreckage, any evil meant toward you, any anything, and choreograph beauty and meaning from it (Gen 50:20) then you can rest in Him! If He can’t, you had better get busy. Either God’s always at work, watching the city, building the house, or you need to try harder. Either God is good and in control, or it all depends on you. Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest (Matt 11:28). 

#StandYourGround – God’s #Strength is Perfect in Our Persecution –

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And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour. (Acts 16:16-18)~ Those who do good by drawing others to God and away from sin, may expect to be reviled as troublers of the world. A person who walks in confidence of God endures taunting and persecution because they are bold enough to say they believe. While they teach men to fear God, to believe in Christ, to forsake sin, and to live godly lives, they will be accused by the world of teaching bad customs. They will be put on the stage of society as strange or eccentric or accused of being some obscure radical. Their validity as a Christian will be put under the microscope and every fiber of their being tested for worldly exposure. It’s as if they must be as pure as Christ Himself to carry any level of trustworthiness. Why is it that a person that outwardly expresses their love for Jesus is viewed as some ‘Jesus freak'; weirdo or strange being? Why is it that when we choose to differ our mindset than the typical man of the world, people are quick to point out that we are different and don’t stand with “the” crowd? Christ warned us of this very thing – that the world would hate us because of Him. We know the ‘world’ is at enmity with God – meaning those who are ‘friendly’ to the worldly way ultimately turn against the Godly way – because these two ‘ways’ are in conflict to each other. Satan is the god of the ‘worldly’ way so it’s guaranteed that your commitment to Christ always comes under persecution in the world. This is a sign that you are doing what God wants you to do. You are a threat to the enemy’s purpose. Here’s what’s most interesting: those that persecute you many times believe what you believe but they are more afraid of looking like they stand with you than with the popular crowd. Their persecution of you is more about them than it is about you. Even Satan, though the father of lies, will declare the most important truths, when they can thereby serve his purposes. You can’t let this deter you. These circumstances are the enemy trying to manipulate and disorient you and make you question the very Word that is in you. If he can disconnect you from your commitment he will even take people that love you and use them against you. Stand your ground…don’t be passive… neither give place to the devil… but rebuke that evil and confront it head on. God will strengthen your commitment even though you’re under persecution! Resist the devil and he will flee from you!