To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven (Ecc 3:1)~ In due time all of our experiences, all of our likes and dislikes, our passions, joys and pains, things we do and places we go; even the people around us and ultimately our very selves… must go through change. Being the creatures of habit that we are, this experience of change is not always welcome or comfortable. We are more desired to stay where we are because it’s comfortable and it’s easy and we don’t have to worry about what may or may not happen because of change. We feel in control. We are uncomfortable about change in life because we have to take a new path that is outside of the one we are always in and feel good about. But when God calls upon you for your destiny you will have to endure change that will take you away from what you are used to and comfortable with. Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee (Gen 12:1)~ Imagine trusting God to the point you give up everything you have; everything you are everything and possibly most of, if not everyone you know. God did just that, even Himself, to deliver His promise to us and open the door for us. He could have just sat in Heaven and been comfortable in His glory and just let things happen, but God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16). He made the biggest change in History- a change that altered the destiny of life itself. He gave up His all to replace the burden and the end result of sin for us. Knowing this we have to be encouraged of our security during the journey because while we don’t know what we’re about to go through, we do know that HE is in control and has a place that He will bring us to. We have a decision to make. We can trust Him enough to faithfully go through the change as He asks of us or we can ignore Him and fight for the comfort of staying stagnant; for the easiness of just being where and how we are. The end result though will be the same. Again, everything has its appointed time and when that time is exhausted, the winds of change are imminent! Remember, God’s word will not return to Him void but will accomplish what He purposes (Isa 55:11). Therefore our decision to ignore and hold back kicking and screaming for our “right to be as we please” only makes it harder on us when that inevitable does come. If God means it for you, it is going to be! How it affects you is really up to you. God gives us the opportunity to change or be changed. It’s up to us! Is there anything in your life you would not be willing to walk away from to follow Christ and give Him the praise, honor and glory He is due? Would you change your life to live in Him and have Him live through you? We don’t fully know what God’s promise brings us along the way but we know what the end result will be. Christ gave all and sits at the Right hand of God … the promise as a result of our faith, our trust will be a greatness beyond our comprehension. Don’t fight what must be; but trust God and allow His blessing to enhance, grow and sustain you as the seasons around you change!
…Forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before (Phil 3:13)~ As we finish out 2017, its common to think back over the year that was and ponder what we’ll want to do differently in the next year that is before us. Chances are, even if you think really hard… it’s likely you no longer have a vision or you don’t have full memory of the vision of how you were going to be a better person in 2017! But If asked to recount how someone has hurt you or what went wrong at work or how you didn’t achieve something, you can recite every action and every word! Your memory of what happened ‘yesterday’ is so vivid that you’re blinded from walking into into your future. And walking into the future with your head looking into the past is a sure way to hit a wall! As you “come up the rough side of the mountain” you’re finding that the heavier the load of baggage and burdens you carry, the harder your climb is! Look, No matter how you spin it, It’s time for you to LET GO of the setbacks and disappointments of the past. – You can’t do anything about what was or used to be or what happened…but from this moment forward, you can make a difference, look at things with a different perspective and present a different attitude! YOU have the power to change generations after you, put an end to bad states of mind, get rid of bad attitudes and reverse those curses that hung over your head. Instead of holding on to all that mess, listen to that change that you keep saying you want to see, and make that the change you resolve to be!
Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do (Luke 23:34)~ Jesus often talked of what would happen but He loved anyway. As soon as Christ was fastened to the cross, He prayed for those who crucified Him. Although He was in the greatest struggle and agony, He forgave! The moral: don’t allow pain to dictate the course of your behavior by crippling your ability to trust or over cautiously holding back caring feelings so not to invest in too much emotional concern (in a fruitless attempt to protect yourself). That unforgiveness is a prison that you’ve chosen to lock yourself in! Stop using an unfair tragedy as an excuse to remain forever broken believing that you have a right to stay that way. Instead of walking around with a chip on your shoulder embracing bitterness to justify yourself, and feeding the pain, LOVE, FORGIVE and embrace FREEDOM! You have a RIGHT to these beautifying things that only come through the dismantling of that fortress of false rights! We cause more hurt to ourselves than the person who inflicted us when we hold on to anger and bitterness. Rather than coming back after those who called for His death and inflicting a revenge that no one would have survived, Jesus came back in peace. Yes, He’s God, but aren’t we made in His image? Don’t we bear His likeness? Why is it Jesus can forgive the sins of the world….that He had to pay for in death but we are still holding bitterness for a pain that we can’t half remember just how uncomfortable it was. It’s time to put it down my friend. People are quick to say I forgive but I just can’t forget… Forgive and forget doesn’t mean that you lose memory of what happened…that’s just not humanly possible… But the “forget” part is your action to MOVE ON and put down that grudge. Vengeance, vindictiveness and spite are not your right to imply nor inflict…no, the battle is not yours, it’s the Lord’s! Forgive and Move on! Harbored Hatred Hinders Healing!!!
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this (Isa 9:6-7)~~ The birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus! There has never been a more significant event in the history of the world. It’s a story of the all powerful God coming near to his creation in the form of a baby. Centuries of prophecies being fulfilled through the birth pains of a woman. The worldwide curse would soon see it’s undoing as this baby would grow into a boy, a man, and then become the all atoning and perfect sacrifice. The course of not just history but eternity would never be the same. That wonderful, mysterious night over 2000 years ago caused shepherds to leave their sheep; it started a long journey for wise men from foreign countries, scores of people put down their ‘lives’ to pursue the presence of the Lord in worship! As we remember again the significance of that night, may the wonder, mystery, and majesty that set many on a special journey in their lives, stir our hearts as it has done in those of who have responded to it for generations. Merry Christmas to all of my friends and family. May God bless you!
…that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the Word, so that He might present the church to Himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish (Eph 5:26-27)~ We can try to live a holy life among a lost world, and we can persevere not to allow the influence of darkness stain our garments; but in truth, each day we stand before the Lord in need of new mercies. We hear and see things that can bend our thinking and tarnish our purity. Even in times when we’ve not sinned, our spirit can still pick up the stale odor of the world from just having passed through it—kind of like walking through a shroud of cigarette smoke.. We didn’t smoke it but we might come away smelling like we did…its influence is on us! God has made provisions for our continual cleaning and re-cleaning. He knows that we’ll encounter constant challenges to our faith, constant pressures to compromise, subtle foxes spoiling our vines from beneath where we don’t always see them. Our Lord is the master of cleaning our dirty laundry. He can lift any stain, press out any wrinkle, and remove any lingering odor of unrighteousness. God’s grace provides for us a good washing when we need to be cleansed from being out in that dirty world. Jesus paid an awful price to make possible this holiness we can so freely wear it, and He did it not just for our benefit…He intends to present Himself with a perfect, flawless Bride, and she’s not going to have one speck of soil on her wedding garment! When we allow Him to use the soap of grace, applied against the washboard of loving discipline, and rinsed in the water of the Word, we come out as pure, forgiven, and sanctified as if we’d never been dirty in the first place. So Fresh; So Clean!
If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? And if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan? (Jer 12:5)~ How often we find ourselves complaining about our discomforts and pain; Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me…O my God, my soul is cast down within me (Ps 42:5,6). We pray to God to move us on into the next season as a way of getting us out of these trials and pain. Pain is inevitable but we must not become disoriented by it. Our trials, even in our places of comfort are designed to propel us toward our place of destiny. In order to go TO the next season, you must go THROUGH this one – no one is going to just ‘walk’ into the next season. Like the elements of nature, that change from one season to the next with turbulent and sometimes violent clashes in the weather, we must go THROUGH challenging circumstances and impacts of our perspective as we move from one season in life to the next. What’s more the new season may not necessarily be the ‘due’ season that so many of us expect. Don’t misunderstand in thinking that the new season will not have trials because it’s very possible that the season you go into may be even MORE challenging. Remember, God is preparing you for the next level; but your “destiny” may be a little further off… still. If you think you can’t handle what you’re going through today, what makes you think tomorrow will be ‘easier’? In fact, it may be ‘harder’! But my confidence is in the Creator! Your blessing comes in perseverance. HOPE thou in God: praise Him for the help of His countenance. Now faith is the substance of things HOPED for, the evidence of things not seen. For if we HOPE for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance! We can HOPE in God because He has planned for us to have a hope: “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a HOPE” (Jer 29:11) . And that promise, we can depend on for God is not a man that He would lie; nor the son of man that He would repent; hath He said, and shall He not do it; or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good? (Num 23:19). So if God promised it, it’s sure to be done because He not only won’t fail; but He won’t turn away from that which He has spoken. But your perseverance is a must, in THIS season; because if you can’t handle the little things of today, how will you handle tomorrow? Trust Him even in the trials of today; God is preparing you. Be faithful over these few things and He will make you a ruler over many!!
The Lord will perfect that which concerns me (Ps 138:8)
Do you feel overwhelmed with too many responsibilities and challenges facing you at every turn? Do you feel like you’ve run out of options and you’re doing life on empty? That is likely what the wife of the prophet that died in 2 Kings 4:1-7 felt. With her husband’s death, she was in desperate financial trouble and was in fear of losing everything she had–including her boys–to creditors. She asked Elisha for help. When he asked her what she had to work with she told him that she had nothing at all to work with except a small jar of oil. Maybe you can relate to the widow in that when you don’t think you have enough, you feel desperation and focus solely on your limitations. God sees your problem much differently from the way you do.
All throughout scripture we see examples of how God specializes in doing a lot with a little and this story is another prime example. The world may see this as illogical or ridiculous, but God doesn’t. God took one jar of oil and multiplied it so the widow could pay her debts. He took two fish and five loaves of bread and fed thousands. He takes faith the size of a mustard seed and can move mountains!!! Where in life do you feel overwhelmed and feel like you have nothing left to work with? During those times when you feel overwhelmed and you’ve run out of options, remember that God has made you what you are and given you everything that you need and YOU what all God needs. You are perfect for His purpose. Just Say Yes Lord!