2015: What Worked & What Didn’t? 2016 #Resolution –

resolution
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new -(2 Cor 5:17)
 
God is at work in us – every one of us – whether we can see it or not (Phil 2:13). He’s working to transform our character into the character of His son, our King, Jesus Christ. And He’ll continue working on us until the work is complete when Christ returns (Phil 1:6). Our job is to join to Him. Our job is to follow Jesus and work ourselves, in obedience, to grow and bear fruit in goodness and reflect His light in our lives… and to decrease the opposite – turning from our old ways, habits, mindsets and measures:
 
‘…do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, ‘you shall be holy, for I am holy.’” (1 Peter 1:14-16). 
 
Who among us doesn’t need more goodness and more light? That’s rhetorical, of course. And when is a better time to increase our intentionality about increasing our holiness than the beginning of a new year? That actually is rhetorical too.  God calls for us to be holy but this can only be done in Christ; and the new year, while symbolic to US as a time to make a change, does not appear on a calendar in front of God as He is infinite with regard to space and time.  The ‘New Year’s Resolution’ is not the point – but the resolution – the intent to begin an action – is! We must intentionally turn to God and make the change that we know we must make – and we need not wait until January 1 to do it – for what if the day never arrives? 
 
So how do we? Well, we get intentional by looking at the choices we’ve been making – who we’ve been spending time with, the practices we’ve been engaging in, the experiences we’ve been enjoying. We get intentional by taking time to reflect on those choices… and upon their results. And we get intentional by deciding which of those relationships, practices and experiences we’d like more of, going forward, because they increase holiness- and which we’d like less of, because they don’t. 
 
Vision
Now, ‘Write the Vision and Make it Plain on Tablets, That he may run who reads it’ (Habakkuk 2:2) – To be intentional, that vision of what you need to do must be in your ‘face’ at all times. Have it where you can see it and/or be reminded of it and do what you have to do to make it become reality! 
 
Look forward to being the reality of God’s vision of the new creation of you! He’s done what HE had to do to make it possible for you. Now it’s YOUR turn! 

Do You Really #Believe Jesus Loves You?

Jesus loves you.~~~  How do you feel when you read that? Do you doubt it because you’re suffering? Do you disbelieve it because there’s great sin in your life? Do you dismiss it because you’re so busy with life that you don’t have time to think about it? If so, then remember the prayer Paul prayed for the church, saying:  “I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God – (Ephesians 3:17-19)”.  In praying this prayer, Paul didn’t doubt that God loves His people, but He did doubt that they truly knew it, really believed it, and were experiencing it.  Many Christians today know God loves them, but they know it like someone who takes a driver’s education class but never drives a car. They know it’s there but they’ve never taken advantage of the experience of its fullness!  Paul wanted the love of God, like a plant rooted deeply in nourishment and able to flourish, to be a deep root in people’s souls. He wanted the church to know that God’s love is wide enough to welcome anyone, long enough to stretch from the beginning to the end of time, deep enough to reach down to the worst of sinners, and high enough to transport us to God’s heavenly kingdom.
Believe it! Jesus Loves You!

Even Now You Can #PraiseTheLord –

praisethelord

I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make its boast in the Lord; The humble shall hear of it and be glad. Oh, magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together. (Ps 34:1-3)~~ Why praise the Lord? We could just say “Why Not?” But seriously… what is the big thing about praise? When we bring our sacrifices of praise, thanksgiving and joy to God, we are telling Him that we wish to die to our own desires and knowledge, and we desire to love and trust Him completely. It is in the holy atmosphere of praise and worship that healing, miracles and transformation of the soul begin to manifest, and God’s glory starts cleansing and changing our carnal nature into the nature and character of Christ. We are literally praying with our heart, soul and spirit. The result is always an impartation of God’s infinite blessings, wisdom, knowledge and understanding. When you truly understand this truth you will begin to regain and restore all that Satan has stolen from you. Demons cannot resist the praise of the children of God. They are in fact confused by it… ‘how could they be praising God when all hell is being brought against them??’ The answer is because when we praise, we are expressing our faith in the knowledge that if God is for us, nothing could prevail against us! When you feel discouraged, and a spirit of confusion tries to invade your thinking, if you begin to offer a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving you will find that the peace of God will cover you as a shield of protection and the angel of the Lord will encamp all around you and deliver you (Ps 34:7). SO – – Let everything that has breath… praise the Lord!

#SpeakLife and Be a Builder of #Peace –

Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another. (Rom 14:19)~ Petty thoughts, actions and ideas can ruin a friendship or the trust of any relationship. It may not always seem like a big deal while we’re going through it, but over time the smallest things can actually cause the biggest challenges. Life on a stable, even plane requires everyday effort and we have to do our part by taking control of thoughts, controlling our mouths, doing what leads to peace and eliminating that which does not. There are certain ideas we cannot allow to creep into our minds with regard to our relationships. What sets itself in the mind eventually affects our heart and out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Matt 12:34). Once it is spoken, the building or destruction of the relationship occurs because the tongue has the power of life and death (Prov 18:21). So we must be careful what thoughts we let inseminate us, what we carry in our hearts, what we speak to life and what we speak to death! The tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell (James 3:6). Words we speak are one of the most powerful but also the most dangerous weapons we have. Remember, with words God created the universe but with words He also destroyed the earth by flood. The courses of life and death were spoken of Him and we who are in His image have the same power. The key difference though is WE aren’t perfect and shouldn’t even pretend to be. We are human just like the next person. We make mistakes, exhibit attitudes, let our pride get in the way and sometimes act like children, just like other humans. We have to give each other the benefit of these imperfections and be willing to take ownership of what we bring that causes our relationships destruction and do the opposite. Rather than purposely destroy each other let us take that effort to intentionally uplift each other and make peace. Pick our battles carefully and rather than say destructive things, be a builder for the Kingdom of the Lord! 

Of the Increase of His Government and #Peace There Will Be No End-

PEACE

They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth for ever (Ps 125:1)~ All those minds shall be truly stayed, that are stayed on God; He keeps them in His perfect peace (Isa 26:3)!! They shall be as firm as a mountain supported by providence, much more as a holy mountain supported by promise.. God’s promise… steadfast and unmovable! They cannot be removed from confidence in God. They abide for ever in that grace which is the supporting foundation of their everlasting continuance in glory. Committing themselves to God, they shall be safe from their enemies (Ps 27:6). Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? (Rom 8:35) No not one!! Mountains may molder and come to nothing, and rocks may be removed, but God’s covenant with us cannot be broken, nor His care of us cease. Our troubles shall last no longer than our strength under Him will bear us up. The rod of the wicked may come and fall upon us, our persons, our estates, our liberties, our families’ names, on any thing that falls to our lot; but it cannot reach our souls (Job 1:12)!!! And though it may come upon us, it shall not rest upon us! The Lord will make all work together for our good (Rom 8:28)! For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom 8:38-39). No matter what is out there, no matter what we see or hear or feel, no matter what comes – God is our foundation of stability in all things. Friend, sleep in Heavenly peace; knowing and trusting in Him!

Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end

This is Personal! #RelationshipMatters –

Relationship

Study to shew THYSELF approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15)~ There are some who are operating from an unconscious spiritual state of being not fully understanding the way or will of God. While their intent may be well meant it is misleading and they are unmistakably misinformed as they confuse their partial information to be that of a Spiritual enlightenment or euphony of truth causing them to speak condemnation to things and people they don’t understand. They don’t deny the resurrection, but they corrupt true doctrine; some for personal gain, others to bend the truth to justify their wrongful state, and still others to make the truth an outright lie. Let it be told by some and they’ll have you believe that God instructs us to commit violations of every one of the ten commandments as if completing His work in His name! Don’t be moved by every wind and doctrine that blows your way, no matter how charismatic or attractive the speaker! Be ever careful and ever vigilant. This is the time of all of those false prophets the Bible warns of!! Not all who come in the name of The Lord come in the name of THE Lord!! You must seek the Truth in everything you choose to believe and follow and know when to change your direction. Your knowledge of and relationship with God must be of your OWN doing! Not Facebook Ministries or Twitter Confessions, Not your (or my) emailed blog, Not Preachers of this city or that city, Not Bishop So-and-So, Not Deacon Whats-His-Name nor Prophetess Whatever…. These are not your gateway to God – But Jesus is the way, the Truth and the Life and no one comes to the Father but by Him! Others may teach you some right things ABOUT God; and they may teach some wrong things…but how will you know if you just blindly follow and agree to what feels good or “sounds” right??? Any right ‘deliverer of the Word’ will tell you to go check it out for yourself… make sure you understand what they’re telling you but also and especially what is RIGHT. Don’t solely rely on what someone tells you or shows you! God wants you to KNOW Him for yourself…and He wants that relationship with YOU. You have to get in that Word, day and night, and do your due diligence! Friend, He promised us that our time is limited here and to make sure you are set for eternity, YOU must get to know HIM, not just what somebody tells you OF Him! Yes my friend – This Is Personal!!

Before The First #Christmas Was, God Is –

I AM

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched–this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. (1 John 1:1-2)~~ At Christmas, we focus on the birth of Christ – the beginning of His “human” presence on Earth. But unlike every other human birth that has ever happened, the birth of Jesus was not the beginning of a new life. Rather, He who was there at The Beginning “appeared”.  And this appearance was not a dream or vision or apparition. The appearance was an extended visitation, a flood of revelation, all lived in a real life. “The life appeared.” It was heard; it was seen; it was touched. Bethlehem was not the beginning of the life of Christ, and that’s why His life can change our lives. Jesus said: Before Abraham was, I AM” (John 8:58). What was new at Bethlehem was the way God reached out to the human race. Whereas in the past God spoke through the words of prophets, a new God-speech began at Bethlehem. God “has” spoken to us by his Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, and through whom He made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all things by His powerful word (Heb. 1:2-3). So Christmas is about the Good beginning, and it is about the rescue of the now. A new contact with the human race by the One who has been there all along. Merry Christmas and God Bless You!