#KeepCalm – God Will Fix It!

…But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn (Matt 13:25-30)~~ How often do you catch yourself thinking, saying or even asking why can’t we; or better yet, why does God not just get rid of the evil things and people in the world? Why doesn’t He just put all that “over there somewhere”? Why do we have to deal with hard people, suffer through struggles and have troubles if we are believers of God? Why do WE as His “good children” have to co-exist with the obvious people that could care less about God and His salvation? Why must we live among the troublemakers? I know what Job 14:1 says but if Jesus fixed it, shouldn’t WE just have all greatness in life with no struggle?

Well, here’s food for thought: Though gross transgressions, and those such that openly oppose the gospel, ought to be separated from the society of the faithful, no human skill can make an exact separation. Who can REALLY tell other than God Himself? Those who oppose must not be cut off, but instructed, and this with meekness!! And even though good and bad are together in this world, and at the great day they shall be parted; then the righteous and the wicked shall be plainly known; here today sometimes it is hard to distinguish between them. We shortchange ourselves by only focusing on gratitude, thanksgiving, and appreciation when things are good, going our way or when we have what we want. We see that which appears good and praise God for it but it is that heart that we cannot see that truly identifies the true good. Don’t just be thankful for what is good, or what you like about your life. Be thankful for everything; good, bad and ugly. There is an abundance of benefit to thankfulness for the hard experiences in life. When you express gratitude in tough times, you force yourself to adopt a mind that is more like Christ and you are becoming more of what God desires for you. How differently would you approach life if you expressed more gratitude than frustration? Final thought, if there were no trials, transgressions and troublemakers around us, what would we have, as overcomers in Him, to shout our praise about?? In EVERY thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you (1 Ths 5:18). The weeds seem to be taking over, but the Harvest is on the way!

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His #Grace and Mercy Make You Worthy! ~

Eager suitors sometimes despair that they will ever be thought worthy of the hand of the beautiful woman they are pursuing. Mid-level managers wonder if they will ever be thought worthy of executive rank. Bonehead sinners like you and me wonder if we will ever make it to heaven.

We do believe in Jesus, but we still keep sinning. How depressing! What if He stops loving us? What if God finally gets sick of us? What if we are disqualified? When doubts and fears like these creep into your mind, let your eyes look at the evil criminal who was being crucified next to Jesus. In shame and urgency he cried out to the Man in the middle, “‘Lord, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ Jesus answered him, ‘Assuredly I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise’” (Luke 23:42-43).

What magnificent comfort! What an incredible display of the gospel! What priceless hope! This man had done nothing to earn his way into God’s favor. All he had was his sorrow and his confidence that Jesus had come to bring him the rescue he needed. Christ upon the cross, is gracious like Christ upon the throne. Though He was in the greatest struggle and agony, yet he had pity for a poor penitent. By this act of grace we are to understand that Jesus Christ died to open the kingdom of heaven to all penitent, obedient believers. It is a single instance in Scripture; it should teach us to despair of none, and that none should despair of themselves.

Jesus’ mercy is greater than any evil. Jesus, in grace forgave this man on the cross next to Him, who by the law deserved to die, at first sight without hesitation. A lifetime of crime was washed away in the moment of repentance and faith. The sinner, by faith was now Jesus’ friend. That very day the angels would come to bear his soul home to paradise. Herein is our example… and our hope!

God Showed You #Forgiveness – Your Turn… ~

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. —Ephesians 4:32

There are a lot of things God knows about any of us that we wouldn’t want anyone else to know. God has enough on any of us to bury us! But no one will never know any of it because God won’t tell.

This is precisely how you and I are forgiven: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us” (Ps. 103:12). Our sins are “wiped out” (Acts 3:19). It is as though our sins don’t exist anymore— in fact they never existed…they are gone, gone, gone, gone! Insofar as our standing and security with God are concerned, they will never be held against us.

Joseph is sometimes referred to as Christ-like. A person in the Old Testament who, long before Jesus came along, displayed characteristics of Jesus Himself. Despite his imperfections, Joseph was indeed like Christ in many ways. His ability to forgive his brothers as he did foreshadows Jesus’ actions toward His disciples. Scared to death and ashamed over the way they had deserted Jesus when He was arrested, they were huddled behind closed doors when the resurrected Jesus turned up unexpectedly and declared, “Peace be with you!” (John 20:21). The disciples were totally forgiven—and they knew it.

We all have skeletons in our closets; some are known to others, many are unknown. It is comforting to know that God freely and totally forgives all of our sins and will never tell what He knows. That is the way Joseph forgave. And that is the why we are urged, “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Eph. 4:32).

What’s the benefit you ask? What about what they did to me you ask? As if the examples above weren’t enough – that Christ Himself forgave those who deserted Him, that Joseph forgave his brothers who sold him to be a slave and lied to their father about his fate. Consider what Pastor Tony Evans shares with us:

The Lord restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the Lord increased all that Job had twofold.

– Job 42:10 –

If you are familiar with the story of Job, you will recall that Job’s friends were not that friendly to him at all. In fact, when Job was at the worst of times, his friends judged, griped, criticized, accused and more. For Job, praying “for his friends” involved a lot more than asking God to bless those he loved and considered dear. It involved a significant amount of forgiveness, acceptance, humility and love. It also involved faith.

It wasn’t until after Job showed grace and kindness to those who had brought him pain during his greatest moments of pain that God restored him. This is because Job had obeyed the law of love and asked God to give His goodness to others. When Job did that, God gave goodness to Job as well.

See the lesson here is that forgiveness is FOR the one who GIVES it! Forgiving releases the bond you have on that person but it also sets you up for healing, restoration and peace over the pain that was inflicted on you.

So, you want to be over it? You want to move past that pain? ForGIVE it away and watch what God does FOR your GIVING!

Tired Is Not An Option – #Renew Your Strength! ~

eagles-wings

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint (Isa 40:31); Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord;  But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor 58,57)~ Sometimes I feel like I’m spinning my wheels on things in life and get nowhere. In fact I get so frustrated from all of the challenges that I even get to the point of throwing my hands up and saying ‘why even try anymore’. Then God answers “My word will not return to me void…”  and for some reason, “tired” is not an option! That reassurance is the renewing of strength that I needed! Friend, God promises that your efforts are paying off and that you will reap what you sow! Thank Him for what He’s already done and that in Christ you have the victory. Your efforts are simply the manifestation of His word that will do as He has intended! Stay in the battle.. Don’t quit just because it gets tough! The work you do after it gets tough is the work that will get you across the line to success! Tired is not an option – – come to the Lord and HE will be your strength!

In His #Favor It’s All New! ~

And He that sat upon the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new” (Rev 21:5); Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new (2 Cor 5:17); Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? (Isa 43:19)~ Look at this new day. You have once again come in to new mercies as the Word says, they are new EVERY morning! You are about to see experiences from this point forward that may LOOK like what you’ve seen before but the fact that the day is new and your mercies are new, this day for you is one unlike you have ever seen before! The promises of being born again in Christ will not only promise us Heaven after we leave earth, but will expose us to a new life in our current state. Our very lives will present a new perspective to us under the favor of God. We actually see things as they never were and even greater than we could have imagined or asked for. Lives, relationships and experiences take on a whole ‘new’ presentation before us with a new level of fulfillment and gratification. Parts of our lives that would seem dated, stagnant or exhausted are now renewed, reconciled and refreshing. What we’ve always had will even seem new to us in His favor!

Be encouraged in Him my friend to let go of what ‘was’ and experience what IS!! Jesus came that we may not only have life, but have it more abundantly. In Him we live, move and have our BEING (Acts 17:28)…that’s right; not only will you see new things and do new things, but you will BE a new person. What a feeling it is to have your life totally change. He keeps in perfect peace those who ‘stay’ on Him and trust in Him. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Rom 8:28) May your ‘new thing’ spring forth and may you experience the working together of all things under Him that fill your life!!

Be Ye Also Ready! #BibleStudy ~

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)~ As the efficient military soldier is one with his weapons, so we must be with the Word of God. As we war with principalities, powers, the rulers of the darkness of this world, and spiritual wickedness in high places, we must ALWAYS have on the whole armor of God. In these days, this is more and more important! A soldier in God’s Army can’t just have the Word for Sunday morning and Wednesday night, But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law doth he meditate day and night (Ps 1:2).

To meditate in God’s word, is to deeply focus within ourselves concerning the great things contained in it, with close application of mind and fixedness of thought. The devil doesn’t just tempt us or attack us on Sunday morning or Wednesday night.. or just before we eat or go to bed! Therefore must have CONSTANT regard to the Word of God, as the rule of our actions, and the source of our comforts; and have it in our thoughts night and day. For this purpose no time is amiss. And what is the benefit to being so intertwined in the Word of God? That this person may KNOW the Lord and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death; If by any means he might attain unto the resurrection of the dead (Phi 3:10-11)… not just read about it or hear about it, but KNOW!! And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper (Ps 1:3).

#GetReady – The People Challenge Only Gets Greater! ~

“If you have raced with men on foot, and they have wearied you, how will you compete with horses? And if in a safe land you are so trusting, what will you do in the thicket of the Jordan? For even your brothers and the house of your father, even they have dealt treacherously with you; they are in full cry after you; do not believe them, though they speak friendly words to you (Jer 12:5-6)~ You must be able to handle what you’re dealing with where you are before you can go where God is planning to take you. As things move on your behalf today, criticism, jealousy, envy and hate from family, friends and people you thought would always be in your corner should be expected on a daily basis! People around you that are closest to you are the first ones to misunderstand you when God’s anointing and blessing comes upon you. It’s cool though, because sometimes the anointing can really bring the worst out of them; but for you it’s just an exercise to get you ready for where God is taking you.

You need to thicken up your skin and stop being sensitive, if you can’t deal with the drama of those around you where you are now, just think what it’s going to be like once you arrive in the place that has been laid aside for you; when your table is prepared in the presence of your enemies! Use every ounce of love you can to deal with them (God will provide for you and replenish you) and then keep on movin!