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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Front Rows Are Empty

Have you ever had your heart set on attending a professional sporting event, the ballet, or a concert hosting your favorite musician?  Chances are you probably wanted to get a really good seat.  Of course, what would be the point of paying for expensive prime seat tickets if your view was blocked the entire time, preventing you from seeing the performance?

Front row seats typically cost quite a bit more, but most are willing to pay the extra price in order to experience the full excitement of the show.  I guess my question today is, why are we so willing to go the extra mile for front row seats, camp out all night for concert tickets, stand in line all day for the newest game system, vie for first class seating on an airplane to experience extra comfort and special VIP treatment, but when it comes to filling our churches, the front row seats are always empty?  I guess I was wondering if the angels secretly have these seats reserved; if the music is too loud; or are we simply afraid the pastor might get overly excited in preaching the good news and fling sweat on us?  It's funny how sweaty performers and blaring loud music don't bother us a bit at our favorite rock concert?  It's funny how some people will lie, cheat or steal at a chance to be the first in line to purchase the latest I-phone.

Are we so ashamed of our sinful nature that we can't seem to bring ourselves to the front of the church to experience the full glory of God our Father?  What has happened to our priorities that we hide from our Savior in any other part of the church as long as it is not up front where others may watch our behavior?  I would have thought a population of saved believers would be fighting over the front row seats to experience God to the fullest, to receive all that He has to offer, to revel in his free gifts of grace and forgiveness.  What are we afraid of?  What holds us back from giving God our best?  Why have we become so complacent in our worship?

Jesus took a front row seat on the cross, to be a public spectacle of mockery on our behalf and the best we can do is sneak into church 5 minutes late to find a seat in the back?  Friends, we can do much better in honoring our Savior.  He deserves our all, our best effort, but many times he is satisfied no matter what condition we come to him.  Jesus wants to share an intimate relationship with us.  Why is this so scary?

Please rearrange your life, your schedule, your attitude and place Christ at the helm of your journey.  There is no one else that deserves more of our time and attention than our Savior.  Front row seats in church are free of charge.  There is no cost to experience freedom, forgiveness, salvation, and Grace.  Next Sunday, give God your best.  Won't it be great to see people puzzled about the back row seats being empty for a change!

Every Day is a Good Day When You Live it God's Way!

-Rebecca-    

Saturday, May 26, 2012

THE ONLY MEDIATOR!

Let's get right to the topic and look at some scriptures that support Jesus as the One and Only Mediator between our life here and our salvation in Heaven.

Acts 4:12  And there is salvation in no other, for neither is there another name under heaven given among men in which we must be saved.

1 John 2:1  But if anybody does, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense-Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.  He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours, but also the sins of the whole world.

1 John 2:12  I write to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of His name.

John 14:6  I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.

Colossians 1:19-20 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Hebrews 8:6 But the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, and it is founded on better promises.

1 Timothy 2:5  For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 9:15  For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance--now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.

Hebrews 12:24  to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

John 10:9  I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.  He will come in and go out, and find pasture.

Ephesians 2:18 For through Him we both have access to the father by one Spirit

Hebrews 9:6-10 When everything had been arranged like this, the priests entered regularly into the outer room to carry on their ministry.  But only the high priest entered the inner room, and that only once a year, and never without blood, which he offered for himself and for the sins the people had committed in ignorance.  The Holy Spirit was showing by this that the way into the Most Holy Place had not yet been disclosed as long as the first tabernacle was still standing.  This is an illustration for the present time, indicating that the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the conscience of the worshiper.  They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings - external regulations applying until the time of the new order.  (The order established by Jesus Christ)


Hebrews 10:19-20 Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest (Jesus) over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.




These 13 passages of scripture clearly describe the way (the only way) that exists in which we are to come to salvation.  This is precise documentation so that no confusion would exist in which man should be led astray.  Jesus was the only one in the history of this world, to sacrifice himself in order that we may have a way to our Father in Heaven.  His blood sacrifice was the ultimate demonstration of love by our heavenly Father.  Please do not be confused by this language, for the Father and the Son are One.  The only way God could make himself known to us was by manifesting Himself in human form for the purpose of spreading His Holy Gospel.

Because of the great sacrifice that took place through the blood on the cross, we are to worship no other.  Jesus is the only One in which we should confess our sins and ask for forgiveness.  He is the only one who has the ability to forgive us.  These scriptures clearly support that Jesus is our only Mediator to the Father.  The saints cannot save us, the priests cannot atone for our sins, and worship of man made traditional practices to other worldly gods from other religions are simply idolatry.  This site is for the truth and the bible clearly tells us that Jesus is the truth.  No other loved us so much as to demonstrate himself as a human sacrifice to save us from our sinful nature.  The beauty of this ultimate love is found in the resurrection in which we receive His grace and His mercy so as to experience the glory of God and present it to others.

Please take some time and read the above scriptures in context to clear up any confusion you may have.  These scriptures are not my words, they are God's words; His truth revealed to us so that we may know without a doubt, the clear path to Heaven.  God will reveal the truth if you simply ask with a pure heart and desire to know Him.

Every Day is a Good Day When You Live it God's Way!

-Rebecca-  




















































Thursday, May 24, 2012

Today God Breathed: Revival by Renovation




The heart of God is grieved by the lack of passion by his people to pursue him as Ruler in their lives.  He has tried over and over again through history to show us his Almighty omnipotence and yet repeatedly our sinful nature overpowers us and we refuse to change.  God has promised an elect, a chosen people to share in his kingdom, his new Jerusalem, his heaven on earth.  He asks us, "What have you been waiting for?  Why have you turned your back on me?  Do you not know I have been seeking you and calling you all your life?  Do you even know my voice?  



My laws have been written on the hearts of all men, yet you blatantly defy them.  You have rewritten them after I have warned you to not add or subtract from my word and woe to those who do; for they will be harming generations and generations of my children to come.  My name has been treated like a used postage stamp, worth something at one time, but now just an ignored piece of junk mail.  I have shouted at you from the highest mountains, I have whispered my name across the seas in the hopes of one righteous man answering the call to fight for my Holy Name. 

Where are my people?  Why have they let the sin of man overcome and rule their hearts in how best to make decisions to govern their own people?.  In your courts, you have thrown me out!  In your schools, in front of my innocent children you have buried me in the grave.  It is as if the stone is being pushed back in front of the tomb in which they once tried to contain me in.  In your own homes, you have avoided my name.  You don't commune with me or seek me.  Instead you lose your problems in idols that cannot save you.  Where is the love in your hearts for one another?  Where is your compassion for your children?  Why do you not speak my name to your little ones?  I have provided everything you could ever need in life.  I have given you hope of an eternal paradise and yet you seek the things of this world that only keep you preoccupied.  I am here!  I have always been here!  

Do you think that the lies of evolution will stand?  Do you think that the killing of my babies and those who turn a blind eye to the tortuous methods used in such slayings will not be judged and dealt with accordingly?  Do you think that I did not love you enough to give my very life so that you could experience the peace that I have appointed to all men once they accept me as salvation? 

Oh my people, I am grieved beyond measure, but I knew this was coming.  I knew of my return.  I knew that hearts and minds could only be restored once again by my Holy presence.  A great renovation is on the horizon.  All that was once old, will be made new.  My people have mocked my very words that Every knee will bow and Every tongue confess that I am God.  I have given them love and patience in the hopes they would choose Me over all else, but the pride of evil has overtaken many.  I love my children.  I love that each one is unique and special only to me.  I took so much time in perfecting every detail of all of my creation, but this perfection is overlooked and taken for granted.  How am I so easily denied?  

The beauty of my creation and all it's intended purposes was to give you a land abundantly supplied to keep you healthy and strong so that when I called on you, you would be ready to respond.  I provided so many elements that would sustain you with great vigor.  You have become gluttonous and lazy.  You are always looking for an easy less expensive way; yet my ways were designed as perfect.  Why have you let your idolatrous hands contaminate what was once so divine?  Why do you think man's ways are better?  Yes, I have provided man with gifts, talents and abilities to create, grow and flourish in those areas that would prosper you as a people, but in doing so, you forgot to seek me in the midst of your inventions.  You were impatient and greedy.  You kept pushing ahead to accomplish things on your own and for ill purpose.  Did you ever think about the future and the people's lives whom you would be affecting?  Did you ask for my blessing and wait patiently for a response?  No!  All you could think about was the dollars that would secure your future.  You are not the author of your present or your past.  How did you even know I would allow you a future?  But I was gracious.  I gave you your free will and watched on the sidelines to see if the ways in which you manipulated your brothers and sisters would bother your conscious.  As more profit was gained, my name grew further from your heart.  I could feel the branch separating from the vine and I knew the fruit was no longer of my name.  I had to cut you loose, in the hopes you would one day return and see your wicked ways.  I never stopped loving you.  I never stopped trying to frustrate your plans, but through your own efforts, you sought to overcome and continue down a path of destruction.  

I called on my prophet Ezekiel to warn you.  I told him to tell you that I would show myself as God, and that my people would know my name as Lord over all.  His warnings fell on deaf ears just as it is happening again today.  You are no different than my chosen people!  Despair will be but for a short time, and then I will demonstrate good on my promise.  Restoration is near, but it is more than unfortunate of the things that must come to pass in order for this to occur.  Remember I told Ezekiel
that I would remove all vile images and detestable idols; that I would give my people an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; that I would remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.  Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.  THEY WILL BE MY PEOPLE, AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD.  

A Renovation must first occur.  I will strip the land of everything in it because of the violence of ALL who live there, the land will be desolate as are your selfish ways.  Away with the old.  Get ready to be renewed for a great revival will accompany the renovation of your hearts.  Clean out the idols in your churches, in your homes, in your communities.  Turn away from sin and seek my face.  Throw your self-help books away!  Do you not see the denial of my Name in this man made dogma? I have made you a promise.  I created a covenant to show the beauty of my love for my people, but you have broken it, as you have my heart!  Once again you took the radiant colors of heaven in which one can hardly squint to absorb their flaming, vibrant, glory, and defiled the very meaning to symbolize something profane.  I will restore my holiness among my people.  I will take back what is mine.  I will peel away the very layers of your hardened hearts and you will once again shout my name!  If Nehemiah could build the wall, and Moses could lead thousands to the Promised Land; if Daniel could defeat the lions and Paul and Peter present my name to nations far and wide, do you not think I am eager to show myself through you?  

Wait till you see what I am doing.  Wait till you feel the earth tremble at the sound of the restoring of my Heavenly Name?  Wait until you see the singing and dancing of my beautiful bride!  She has been restored.  She is without the blood stained blemish of sin.  When I call her name, she turns her head in eager anticipation of my loving embrace.  We walk hand-in-hand to the great banquet.  I have planned this feast from the moment I met you.  It has been so daunting to have to wait so long, but I now revel in the splendor of the perfection of this moment in time.  Are you here to enjoy this time with me?  I don't see you.  Why aren't you hear?  Your lack of presence will not diminish the joy of this day, for it is by your own choice that you declined the invitation to the most beautiful event your eyes have ever beheld.  Perhaps, I will wait just one more moment, one more last chance, to give you time to decide.  Lay down your life for me as I have for you.  I will show you the elegance of your life with a man named Jesus who will lead you, guide you, rescue you, restore you, counsel you, understand you and SAVE YOU! 

I'm Waiting!

Every Day is a Good Day When You Live it God's Way!

-Rebecca-




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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

To Know Christ is to Preserve the Power of the Marital Covenant!

In marriage ceremonies today, it is very common for new couples to incorporate the scripture found in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.  For the sake of this article, let's review what Paul describes as perfect love.  "Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails."  Paul did a wonderful job describing our Father's perfect love for us; a model for which we should always strive to live by and incorporate into our own marital covenants.

When I read the bible and come across the words "always" and "never", I ALWAYS pay close attention.  These words are definitive!  They were not meant to only apply to a single moment in time in which our hearts are influenced by all of the exciting preparations of an engagement process finally coming to fruition at the alter. Typically, we see this wonderfully beautiful description of love tossed by the wayside upon the first sign of trouble in a marriage.  Marriage is taken so lightly these days, that I can only believe that most couples use this scripture to dreamily describe what they hope their marriage will be like.  The true intention of this scripture inspired by God was to be stamped on our hearts so that our lives would be a very reflection of these words in our commitment to one another.

For couples who do not know and love the Lord, it is impossible, (yes, I said impossible) to live up to the standards of love that Paul spoke of.  The only way to truly love another as God loves us, is to know the love of the Lord in your own life and model it honestly in all situations.  We of course are not perfect, but without this example, how does a person learn to love and accept their spouse just as Christ loved and accepted his bride, the church?  Jesus accepted us in our sinful nature, with all of our faults, ready and willing to redeem us and free us from condemnation.  Do you accept your spouse unconditionally, understanding that they are imperfect just as you are and therefore communicate in love to strive to build the bond, rather than tear it down?

My husband is a professional dog trainer in which we have our own business.  In our attempts to educate others about building their relationships with their dog(s), we see in the process the dysfunction of many relationships.  In most situations, the families relationship with their pet(s) is stronger than their relationship to their spouse.  To me this makes sense, since animals are capable of unconditional love and this is exactly what every human craves.  The problem is we see more couples nurturing the relationship between them and their pet, then they spend time nurturing the bond between them and their spouse.

Recently, we responded to several private in-home training sessions.  These couples were comprised of those who through conversation confessed their belief in Christ and those who obviously knew not of Christ.  Sometimes clients simply engage in conversation other than dogs to get to know us a little better.  We are not shy about discussing the foundations of our business being Christ Centered.  It has been amazing to us to see very little difference in communication style between those couples who claim to know Christ versus those who do not.  So what exactly am I referring to?  There is such a spirit of blame, selfishness, criticism and rebuking that takes place during our canine consults that I can hardly keep myself from jumping into social worker mode to point out the unhealthy dynamic taking place.  Each places blame on the other for the lack of progress in rearing their dog to be the optimal canine companion.  The wife puts the husband down, the husband feels belittled, each attempts to support their reasons why they are right, all the while, completely disregarding the love that is supposed to be the foundation of their union.  This sequence of events can also be the opposite in which the wife is receiving the criticism, but I have to tell you, the majority of the time, it has been the wife putting the husband down.

My husband and I leave these appointments heartbroken because we know that without the love of Christ within the marital union, the continuous frustration of on-going trials such as this are bound to break the union.  We know first hand, because in each one of these broken relationships, we see what our own marriage used to be until accepting the love of Jesus into our hearts.  Once accepting this love, we were able to put our own personal agendas aside and love the other, just as Jesus loves us.  We began listening to one another, understanding each other, honoring each others hopes and dreams and instead of tearing each other down, we now work to build each other up.  We understand that God uniquely created each one of us with special talents and abilities to use within the parameters of our marriage to help the other accomplish the very life God intended for us.  Not only do we acknowledge each others strengths, but we also take our weaknesses and faults to the Lord asking for eyes to see, ears to hear and hearts willing to change so that we can constantly put aside any selfish desires and focus more on meeting the needs of the other.  This is the truest depiction of love that Paul so tenderly spoke of to the Corinthians in explaining how important it would be to incorporate the characteristics of God's love into our relationships with one another.  We have become a very critical "all about me" society and this detrimental attitude has seeped into our marital unions causing great destruction.

Please revert back to the top of this post and read the scripture verse again describing true love.  Ask yourself what components of this truth are lacking in your own relationship with your spouse.  Think about your own hurts and how you could potentially be projecting your own dissatisfaction on to your mate through the communication of blame and criticism.  Often times we think that the job of the person we marry is to make us happy.  We are greatly dismayed when we realize they are just as flawed as we are.  It is impossible for someone to bring about happiness if they themselves do not experience this within their own lives.  To put this stress on another human being is simply unfair.  This is why we have the perfect love of a Savior!  Ask Jesus today to help you experience the peace of true love in your relationship with your spouse.  Acknowledge your shortcomings, ask for forgiveness, and know that the love of Christ will embrace you, teach you, and show you wonderful new ways to display His love in your marital union.

If you have a need for testimony to be shared in your church community to bring hope to those couples who feel they have none, please email me at bryantrebecca@hotmail.com.  We must never forget that God restores and makes more beautiful those things that were once broken.

Every day is a good day when you live it God's Way!

-Rebecca-

Friday, May 18, 2012

The Beauty of the Beast

At the first glance of reading the title of this blog, you may have misread it for Beauty and the Beast, but look a little closer.  I want to open this post posing a question:  Is God at the center of your accomplishments?

From the beginning of America's birth, we have become familiar with this concept of the "American Dream."  To each individual this may mean something different, but in terms of general conversation, we understand that it refers to the rights of each individual to pursue life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  Mmmmm, the Pursuit of Happiness.  Take a moment and think about this statement as it relates to your own personal life.  Where does the focal point of your happiness lie?

There are a multitude of opportunities that people typically pursue in their quest to acquire happiness.  Some look for happiness in the perfect job, some search for a constant flow of income to be able to purchase anything at any time, some search for happiness through relationships with others, and some find happiness in educational accomplishments.  These are typically the four primary areas that are fundamental to climbing the ladder of success in which we define the climax of reaching the American Dream.

Where is God in relation to your pursuit to happiness?  Over time research results have consistently proven that no amount of money, no amount of closeness to another individual, no amount of education and no amount of work bring true happiness to those individuals who seek success outside of God's divine love.  There always exists a spirit of discontentment, a spirit of searching, and a spirit that something in life is simply not right.  It is no accident that these feelings have been placed in your heart.  God knew from the beginning of your existence that his spirit would reside in you.  The question is, with your free will would you choose to access it?


Titus 2:11 tells us, "For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to ALL men.  It teaches us to say "NO" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ..."  We all have an inner voice constantly prompting us to seek our Creator.  Some ignore the voice, some put it on hold, and others embrace it!  Have you responded to God's call on your life or have you put Him on hold?

Our accomplishments in our life can only evolve from two sources:  from God's divine will or from our own efforts.  God uses us for his glory and for no other reason that his name be proclaimed throughout all the land.  If we have not accepted God into our lives, then we are simply only able to credit our successes to our own efforts.  When we acquire success through our own efforts, we have a tendency to become puffed up and full of pride.  In conversations with others, you can hear yourself saying "I" an awful lot.  "I" created a new program, "I" had the highest earnings, "I" was able to accomplish or create what no one else could, "I" am the better care provider, "I" deserve the raise, and the list of "I's" goes on and on.  This is the Beauty of the Beast.  Satan has found a way to separate you from God by making you believe that you are in this life for your own purpose, to pursue your own goals, and to chase after your own dreams.  As long as you are all about you, Satan's beautiful plan is being fulfilled and God's heart is grieved at your lack of acknowledgement regarding his existence in your life.

The Beauty of the Beast is running rampant in our society.  Everyone is crying "What about me, what about my rights?"   There is this completely insane selfish desire to be heard, to be validated, to be recognized, to be awarded.  These things are contrary to God's attempt to keep us humble so that the glory of our accomplishments will always be a direct reflection of our Creator and not of our own efforts.  God wants us to understand that ALL things come from him and therefore we should acknowledge him in all things.

2 Timothy 3:1 spoke well of the current state of society.  This is what he says, "But mark this:  There will be terrible times in the last days.  People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God - having a form of godliness but denying its power.  Have nothing to do with them!"

In my last post, I provided scriptural evidence that we are to separate ourselves from those who refuse to acknowledge and correct their sinful ways; all the while being conscious of our own sin and working to correct our own behaviors so that we can constantly live in communion with the Holy Spirit.  Titus 3:3 reminds us that we also once lived as an unsaved people, therefore we should be humble, patient, peaceable and considerate when teaching those of Christ's unlimited power and love to heal and forgive.  In order for people to truly receive Christ, they must first become aware of sinful areas in their lives before they can consider correcting any ungodly behaviors.  God uses the power of his Holy Spirit to bring about revelations that convict our hearts to change.  Many do not know they are living contrary to God's laws because they have not read God's word nor accepted God (Jesus) into their hearts.

How many times have you heard people talk about their abundant gift giving, their accomplishments, their good works, or their good personage.  Without the love of Christ for those in which you are giving, your efforts are most likely only boosting yourself.  If a wealthy person gives because they know it will bring them tax breaks, this is not the love of Christ.  If a wealthy person gives because they have an abundance and they believe it is the right thing to do, this is not the love of Christ.  If a wealthy person gives to look good to friends or family or to receive accolades or a pat on the back, this is not the love of Christ.  If a wealthy person gives because they come to the realization that apart from Christ they can accomplish nothing; when they humble themselves to understand God has so blessed them even though they did nothing to deserve it; when they see the needs of others, far surpassing their own, then the spirit of God is at work!

The Beauty of the Beast would like us to believe that because we are capable, we have independently earned our own success.  Romans 8:5 says, "Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires, but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit (God) desires.  What are the areas in your life that are not honoring to God?  Are you living a life of peace promised by Jesus?  If not it is time to evaluate your relationship with a Savior, The Savior.

Might I encourage you today, to look at the state of this world?  As you ponder those things that you determine are greatly flawed, how do these very things relate to your own life?  It is always easier to see the faults of others and the horrible things that are going on in our world, then to determine those areas in our own lives in which we are indirectly harming others.  The Beauty of the Beast convinces us that we don't need God, that the promises of this world are enough to make us eternally happy.  Timothy spoke of a lack of self-control and love of money; look at our debt.  Timothy spoke of those things that are treacherous; look at the figures totaling over 5 million babies that have been aborted.  Timothy spoke of lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God; look at the epidemic of sexual slave trafficking, our divorce rates, rampant sexual sin and a turning away from God's divine nature found in traditional marriage.  Do any of these areas reflect an image of your own life?  If yes, then you have accepted the Beauty of the Beast instead of God's love and plan for your life.  God's love looks much different than Satan's strongholds.

The Beauty of the Beast is sly in getting us to believe that by our works we will be saved.  God is very clear that his mercy alone saves us through the process of rebirth and renewal through his free gift of the Holy Spirit.  Titus 3:5 states, "For he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy".  In the end times, we are told that the anti-Christ will exalt himself over everything that is called God.  Isn't this plain evidence that if the anti-Christ possesses the very characteristic of pride, that we should live contrary to this nature in order to exhibit the spirit of God within us?

If Jesus Christ is not the foundation in your life in which all other life decisions and accomplishments stem, then consider the following prayer:

Lord Jesus, I have put you on hold for way too long.  I have denied the sin in my life in order to fulfill my own dreams and desires, to reach my own success outside of your grace and love.  Lord I ask you today, to give me the courage to take you off hold.  Help me to see that you have been with me all along, but that I have been cold to your prompting.  Lord, I accept you today, but I need your help.  I have lived my life my own way for such a long time that I simply am not sure what your will is for my life.  Lord I trust and believe that you will open my eyes and lead me through your tender mercy.

Please take note of these additional scripture verses to help you choose a life in HIM.

Hebrews 4:13, 10:22-24, 11:16, 12:1; 1 Peter 1:14-16, 1:18-19, 2:21, 5:2-4; 1 John 1:9-10, 3:17-20, 2:15-17; 1 Thessalonians 4:7-8

Every day is a good day when you live it God's Way!

-Rebecca-

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A Double Minded Man in the White House



If you are a judge in this country at any level, there exists a simple rule to remove yourself from a case in which you harbor a personal or professional bias.  Why does this same rule not apply to our President of the United States?  President Obama's recent disclosure of supporting gay marriage is nothing more than his attempt to pursue a personal agenda.

If you read my post yesterday, I quoted Romans 16:17 "I urge you brothers to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned!  Keep away from them for such people are not serving our Lord, but their own appetites."

President Obama has stepped over the line in utilizing scripture to support his own personal bias.  He has taken one verse of scripture "Do unto others as you would have done to you," and applied it to a situation in which he completely discarded God's teachings in other areas of the bible regarding sexual sin.  We must not fail to mention that God destroyed a whole city because of his disgust in regard to his people's immoral and out of control sexual practices.  Romans clearly states that we must separate ourselves from this type of deviant behavior practiced by those who refuse to acknowledge the Lord and his book of protection.  The only way this separation can be achieved is through the up and coming election.  We must work to vote out those politicians that are dismembering our constitution and crushing our 10 commandments.

President Obama's stance in this area is really not surprising.  He has already redefined the 6th commandment of "Thou Shall Not Kill" to exclude unborn innocent babies.  Why should we be surprised that he has "evolved" in his opinion to no longer support the confines of traditional marriage?  It takes a real man of integrity to stand his ground in the midst of pressure to maintain those values that honor God.

James 1:7 says, "Man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord, he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does."  Typically when one becomes a believer, they evolve from a life of sin to a life of righteousness.  This transformation takes place as one studies the word of God.  The Holy Spirit begins to commune with us in order to address those areas in our lives in which sin is present.  My question to President Obama is, "What bible are you reading and how can you expect God to bless your presidency when in all your ways you are living contrary to his laws?"

Hebrews 13:8 says Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.  We are expected to model this very same attitude in our views in supporting Christ and his teachings.  If President Obama is so easily swayed in his opinions simply to acquire votes and increases in election funding, how can he be trusted to represent our countries best interests when it comes to foreign policy or difficult domestic issues?  I understand people have the right to change their opinions, but as Christians we are called to hold fast to the inspired word of God.  President Obama has tossed his bible by the wayside.  This country used to be blessed because of our Christian principles incorporated into our laws and policies.  These policies were pleasing to the Lord.  Over time, we have allowed man's corrupt ways to exceed God's design and in doing so our country has fallen to economic disaster.  I don't think it is a coincidence that greed and lust have lead to the natural consequences of economic crisis and lawlessness.  God has a way of incorporating natural consequences to show us the areas in which we have failed him.

God did not make a mistake when he inscribed his laws upon our hearts.  I am sorry man's conscious has become so strong that he has to work so diligently, to expel any trace of sin from his life, by getting others to believe and follow his lies just so he can live guilt free.  REALLY!

I encourage you to seek your hearts for answers that will be pleasing to the Lord in voting in the up and coming election.  A true revival is necessary to get this country back on track.  We cannot expect our country to rise to new heights by seeking our own agendas.  God calls us to consider others in our decision making, but not at the expense of breaking his laws.

Every Day is a Good Day, When You Live it God's Way!

Please take a few seconds and cast your vote on my new presidential poll found on this page.

Be Blessed,

-Rebecca-


Beach House Bedding Coordinates                      





Tuesday, May 15, 2012

God's Protection or Man's Hypocrisy?

There has been quite a cultural shift in our churches leaving many confused as to what is true truth.  The fact that we have to even wonder about real truth brings me great concern.  Perhaps some would like to provide their feedback in the discussion of this topic.

Since returning to the church and feeling fulfilled in doing so, I have found my calling and pleasure in educating and encouraging others to seek Christ's plan for their lives.  Any attempt to first seek answers about God usually begins in the church.  Therefore, it only makes logical sense to encourage others to get involved in their local church.

I believe Jesus has the answers to all of our problems; thus it only seems fitting for me to discuss my testimony in the hope that others may find the courage to also step through the church doors.  I remember four or so years ago when someone first asked me to come to church.  I searched my mind for any rational excuse to avoid the journey because growing up I was not fulfilled by what was being taught.  I remember the bible stories and of course the 10 commandments and Jesus death and resurrection, but I was never gripped by the word to take the first step in facilitating a change in my life that would be pleasing to the Lord.

The dilemma faced by many is that the image of the church has become tarnished and some churches are blatantly teaching against biblical truths or at least purposefully avoiding them.  I have heard some people discuss church hypocrisy, prejudice, and unacceptable judgement and frankly most don't feel a sense of welcome to even make it into the parking lot.  Why is this?

Jesus came to teach the world of an opportunity to acquire abundant life through him.  He healed the sick, the dying, and the broken spirited.  He forgave the prostitute and called the corrupt tax collector to come follow him. Jesus hung around sinners, but he himself was sinless.  He was incapable of sin and this is why he was able to come to save a lost and dying world.

Jesus knew man had definitive limitations.  Without a strong foundation of biblical truth, man would run the risk of being influenced, not only by his own sinful desires but by the sinful nature of others as well.  Man in and of himself, apart from Christ, is weak and therefore needs the support of a church body with strong fundamental truths to keep him on track with his faith.  It is no surprise that we learn of Paul addressing the church in Corinth about this very issue.  He recognized that sinful behaviors were not only creeping into the church, but becoming accepted by the body of believers.  These are the same issues the church is dealing with today.  Some give the argument that the bible and it's teachings are archaic and outdated, however there are very valid reasons as to why we should take heed and continue to learn from biblical teaching.  History repeats itself.  The issues faced during the time when Jesus walked the earth are the very same issues   that are continuing to divide our country today.  We are by design naturally inclined toward a stubborn, selfish, and sinful nature.

Paul rebuked his brothers and sisters at the church of Corinth and informed the body of the biblical policy to "expel the immoral brother."  This would be an act used to discipline a believer with an unrepentant heart that demonstrated a sense of pride toward their sinful behavior.  Expelling the brother would be necessary in order to prevent the corruption of the rest of the body of believers.  In verse 6 Paul used the analogy of yeast or leaven to explain how sin could easily work it's way through the rest of the congregation and without notice, lead to a gradual change of a new acceptance of sin.  This easily becomes an issue worthy of attention because salvation is now at stake.

So here's the problem.  There are many who criticize the teachings of Jesus within the confines of the church because it is believed that you should be able to come as you are.  This is true!  Jesus accepted all, no sin was to great to lay before the alter for forgiveness.  However, once one enters the church and begins to learn biblical truths, it is then up to them to navigate these truths and incorporate them into their life.  We have to become responsible and proactive in engaging the word of God on a daily basis.  We must be able to discern the message delivered by the pastor in order to maintain a system of checks and balances of accountability.  What is in the bible in it's purest form, is what should be coming from our pulpits.  The only way to truly know what is being preached is for us to read the word ourselves in the privacy of our own homes or in the form of small group discussions.  Otherwise, we run the risk of being led astray, blindly believing and following what may be false doctrine.  In essence, we need to lay down our sins, take responsibility for our own biblical education and be willing to live by God's holy principles of protection.

Many enter the church and simply don't like the accountability factor.  They want to continue living the same old sin-filled life.  An example would be an unmarried couple living together in which the pastor begins to discuss God's teaching in this area.  A time of allowance may be granted to give this couple time to pray and seek the Lord in regard to changing their situation.  If an allotment of time passes and the pastor continues to see no change, he has the right to hold the couple accountable or ask them to leave.  This seems harsh, but this is exactly what Paul was referring to.

Now, I can just hear the counter argument to this, "Jesus is about love and acceptance and understanding."  Yes, Jesus is about all of these qualities, but more importantly Jesus is about salvation.  How can Jesus save if we refuse to bend to his laws that were provided out of his love to aid in our protection, security and safety?  People criticize the church for not preaching hard core truth, but when it comes time to live the truth, they reject and criticize the church for the ways in which they were treated through the enforcement of accountability.  You can't have it both ways.  You can't get in the game, then cry foul because everyone is not playing by your rules instead of those originally established.

People want to know the truth, they seek the truth, but when they find it is opposite of what they expected they cry prejudice, intolerance and even hatred.  These terms further divide and draw attention away from the sin of the individual.  Once the focus is placed off of them and onto the church who projects it's awful unwavering rules and policies, they have a great excuse to leave.  Sin continues to bind the individual thus rendering God's voice distant in their hearts and minds.  FOR SOME IT IS SIMPLY EASIER TO LIVE IN SIN THAN TO TAKE THE FIRST SCARY STEP TOWARD A BETTER LIFE.  HEAVEN FORBID WE SHOULD HAVE NOTHING MORE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT!

Life is not about our ways, it's about God's ways!  Laws were given for our protection because God loved us, not because he wanted to hurt us.  Romans 16:17 states, "I urge you brothers to watch out for those who cause division and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned!  Keep away from them for such people are not serving our Lord, but their own appetites.

We each have an individual responsibility to bring our best to our Father, to demonstrate a state of righteousness, not only to be an example to other believers, but to encourage new seekers in their quest for  answers.  We come bringing our worst, but God's grace and forgiveness are abundant and he washes our sins away, expecting us to take advantage of our new beginning!

I have heard so many people complain that the church is not meeting their needs.  What if this is just the opposite of the intended purpose of the church?  What if we are to come broken, only to be restored, so that we don't continue taking from the church, but begin giving of ourselves for the benefit of others?  This is the true dynamic of Christ's love.  He gave his life for our benefit.  Aren't we to offer of ourselves just as he did so that others may come to know him?

My original question posed was in reference to the supposed intolerance of the church in ousting those who refuse to address the sinful areas in their lives.  Are the laws and truths that bind the church doctrine God's protection for his people, or have our churches become corrupted with a spirit of nonacceptance, prejudice and hypocrisy.  God cannot accept a bride riddled with sin.  We are told his bride will be pure and spotless.  In order to achieve this end result our churches must stand strong in defending the truth and rebuking those in their attempts to live contrary to the Bible's teachings.  This is how it was done then, and this is how it should be done today.  I applaud the churches who are standing strong in an ever changing culture that continues to embrace worldly customs and traditions over God's fundamental truths.

Stay tuned tomorrow for a sequel to Romans 16:17 and how we should incorporate this principle into this year's election.  We as Christians must begin to separate ourselves and stand for what is right and just in God's eyes as opposed to following man's own agenda simply to enhance political gain or monetary contributions.

Every day is a good day when you live it God's way!

Be Blessed,

-Rebecca-

Monday, May 14, 2012

Armed and Dangerous, Ready for Battle!

Everyone faces obstacles in life.  Some of these obstacles seem like endless mountains, while others are simply bumps along the road.  There is quite a big difference between the individual who faces their obstacles with the knowledge and belief in God versus those who deny or refuse his spiritual presence within their life's journey.  The story of David and Goliath is a great depiction of the boldness and courage acquired as a result of faith in God to pull us effortlessly through our struggles.

Don't think for one minute that God did not prepare David in advance for his battle with Goliath.  In chapter 17 verse 36-37 David explains his victories over the lion and the bear.  Not only was David successful in defeating these ferocious creatures, but he completely acknowledges God as the reason he was delivered from any harm during both of these circumstances.  David could have developed a spirit of great pride being that he was small in statue, but he managed to do what most men twice his size may have shied away from in fear.  God has a way of using our trials in life to build us up to face more difficult or complex challenges later on.  He is always molding us, stretching us and bending us to develop new character traits to accomplish His goals for us here on earth. 

David's humility combined with his courage is what makes him so unique.  In 1 Samuel 17:46 David promises that through his actions of defeating the Philistine, the whole world will come to know a God that exists in Israel.  How often do we accomplish a great task and give God the glory instead of calling attention to our selves?  David was so confident that the Lord was with him that he BOLDLY ran to the battle line to meet Goliath.  Not only did he run BOLDLY, but he ran being armed with only 5 smooth stones and a sling shot.  

David used the very gifts God had developed within him to defeat a great and mighty warrior.  Sure David could have accepted a large sword to slay his opponent, but he chose the very provision God had supplied him with all his years as a shepherd.  How often do we try and tackle life's problems without using the very skills and knowledge that God has ordained us with?  We travel outside of our element and attempt to tap resources in which we are unfamiliar with to solve problems that would best be handled by the very wisdom God has provided through previous life experiences.  We need to learn to rely on the fact that God knows the source of our problems and he knows the outcome.  Because he knows the outcome, he has already provided us with life's building blocks to get through any challenge that comes our way.  This is why we should be bold with confidence in facing our challenges.  

What challenges are you facing today:  Single parenting, divorce, addiction, debt, illness, job loss, relationship issues ...

For those that don't know the Lord, they will be left to rely upon their own resources.  Often times feelings of discouragement, fear and hopelessness accompany tough decision making leaving one in a paralyzed state.  Those who turn to the Lord know and believe that God is faithful and loving.  We can be confident in tackling our problems with boldness because God has destined us for these very challenges.  With the power of God's word and continuous prayer we will become victorious in relying on Gods direction and guidance to see us through.  Demonstrate the power of God's presence in your life to others by trusting that God has given you everything you need to overcome.  It is not by our own efforts that we are delivered from our enemies, but by God's wonderful grace.

Every day is a good day when we live it God's Way!

Be Blessed, 

-Rebecca-


See Romans 12: 6 regarding different gifts appointed to us according to the grace given us.  Use your gifts to  give glory to God!




Seychelles Stick to Your Guns Sandals (Whiskey) - Women's Sandals - 7.5 M


Friday, May 11, 2012

Burst Forth with Praise!

Psalm 98:4 Shout for Joy to the Lord, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music; make music to the Lord with the harp and the sound of singing, with trumpets and the blast of the ram's horn - shout for joy before the Lord, the King.

The other day I was going through a life struggle and began expressing my feelings of discouragement to my husband.  In the midst of texting back and forth,  he so eloquently reminded me to "get over it because I am a child of the King."  I am not sure I have ever loved my husband more than at that very moment.  It was the power of the Holy Spirit working through him in order to stop my pity party and remind me of my position under God's love and authority.  "I am a child of the King, the Almighty, the Lord over all of Heaven and Earth!"  Why exactly was my head hung low?  This got me thinking about something that has troubled me for quite some time.

Every week I attend church and look around at others and wonder what perils these families and individuals are facing.  For many, there exists intense medical diagnosis or loss of loved ones.  I have only attended a  dozen churches or so in my life and what I have typically seen on Sundays greatly disheartens me.  We are all children of a mighty God and yet our attitudes toward praise and worship seem so mundane.  I look around and wonder where the joy is in the Christian heart.  Have our problems and struggles with daily life become too much for our God to handle that we should have to resort to our own efforts to endure and solve our own hardships?  No No No!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8R9ZPT2T-I&ob=av3n

I used to love how our worship leader would crank up the volume to this song, rocking the house of God with voices thundering for his holy name.  I don't know how anyone could not feel the intensity of the words moving their hearts to worship.

We should be rejoicing that God is sovereign, He is on His throne, He is in control and there is nothing too great for Him to handle.  God is waiting for true evidence of faith in which we can triumphantly worship him during the good, the bad and the ugly.  Is our light as Christians only a sporadic occasional speck or are we ignited like flames for Christ praising and worshiping because he loves us through and through?  There are going to be times in which our trials consume us.  At the alter we may kneel sobbing and broken from a desperate heart to be free from sin and to be restored from the challenges us life that weigh us down.  These feelings of discouragement, abandonment, and disappointment should not rule our lives forever.  God is our healer, counselor, and comforter.  His open arms should be enough to lift our spirits out of despair and into the joy of praise and worship.  God must see his people cry out for him in brokenness so that he can revel in our restoration and recovery.  Oh how his name is exalted when our testimonies reveal his amazing grace and mercy.

I was born and raised Catholic and I can certainly tell you about mundane worship.  I am sorry if this is offensive to some, but God deserves so much more than monotone vocals with a sourpuss attitude of "Oh, whoa is me!"  Yes, at times, life beats us up, but God is there to pick us up!  Our faith should lie in the belief that God will intervene on our behalf.  This faith is what pleases our great and mighty Savior!  Hebrews 11:6 "And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him."

When I experienced new life as a born again Christian, I wanted nothing more than to burst out of my shell and shout thanks to the Lord for rescuing me from my own self.  Psalm 98:4 speaks of this very spirit wanting to "burst" in jubilant song with music.  Why do we fill our churches with an attitude as if we are sitting at another day of work, instead of rejoicing over the Holy presence of our God who constantly has our best interests at heart?

Have you ever been to a sports event in which the best team in the league was playing against a mediocre team?  There is this phenomenon that sometimes takes place in which the better team actually lowers their level of play to equal the abilities of the lesser team.  Often times this leads to a great upset and the underdog wins.  This is the same phenomenon I see in churches.  It's as if our own level of worship is influenced by those around us.  We don't want to seem annoying in shouting or singing loudly and we certainly would hate to offend or embarrass anyone in our immediate family, but the bible repeatedly discusses people shouting out their praise, raising their voices, rejoicing and playing instruments with great enthusiasm and excitement.  Why are we more willing to shout, cheer and scream at concerts, sporting events, and elections than we are for our Creator?  Do we give God enough glory?  Winning the lottery would be a huge deal and I am sure that it would exhibit a tremendous amount of excitement.  I myself have even allowed myself to dream about what it would be like to own a winning ticket.  My question is, "Shouldn't we be even more excited about our future salvation?"  The bible provides us a tremendous depiction of heaven in the book of revelation.  It is best described as paradise.  Isn't this something we should be willing to whoop and holler about?  Shouldn't thoughts of excitement carry us away concerning the return of our Savior, heaven, or spending eternity with God?  Instead, I am left wondering why I have grown up with inhibitions about vibrant worship.

As my walk with Christ is strengthened, I have found myself with a smile on my face, joy in my heart, and songs of praise coming from my lips.  My hands are raised to honor my God and as well they should be.  The 1st commandment is to love God with your whole heart, soul and mind.  Why wouldn't jubilant worship be expected as an outpouring of our expression of love for our God?  To God give the glory!  I hope we will all start to recognize the importance of honoring God with great enthusiasm in all aspects of our daily walk with Him!  We should be less worried about what those around us think and more worried about the condition of our hearts in regard to our relationship with Jesus!

This Sunday is Mother's Day.  If you are a mother there is no greater blessing bestowed on a woman than the amazing sight of Jesus found in each of your children.  Raise your hands and sing praise with joy to a good and just God that loves you so much as to trust you in the raising of his children.

Every day is a good day when you live it God's way!

Be Blessed,

-Rebecca-



Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Missing Component: LOVE

There seems to be much evidence today that the one great missing component in our relationships with one another is a deep rooted, heart felt compassionate kind of love.  It was no accident that God commanded us to love one another as our selves and this certainly wasn't a request.  By no means has God ever minced His words, hence God is not the author of confusion.

Much division continues to erupt in our culture, not only locally, but worldwide.  Things are definitely heating up and one has to wonder why this is so.  The issues of race, religion and sexuality are common themes dividing our nation as well as our globe.  It is because of our own desire to be right, overriding the inspired word of God, in which we no longer recognize our sinful behavior, but strive to have it validated for our own self satisfaction in order to live a life free from guilt.

God provided us the perfect example of the type of love He expected and of course this was through the sacrifice of His one and only son so that whosoever could experience His salvation.  While Jesus demonstrated the perfect example of God's love in which we are to model our lives, I think we could learn additional lessons from Paul.

Paul, previously known as Saul has one of the most amazing testimonies in bible history and thus is a primary figure throughout the new testament.  His radical extremist killings of Christians came to a dramatic halt when God stopped him in the middle of his journey temporarily blinding him, only to give him new sight with a destiny that would change the course of his life and thousands of others.  Paul's following transformation was nothing short of a miracle.  How does one go from pure hatred to deep compassionate love for his fellow brethren?  Well, let's just say God had everything to do it.

As Paul begins to write to his brothers at Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, Philippi and Colosse, we begin to hear his outpouring of love and concern for his brothers in Christ.  Paul greets each church discussing his thankfulness for the relationship he has shared with them.  He has been imprisoned and persecuted but speaks with great hope and joy that his brothers and sisters are carrying on with their works in Christ.  To the Philippians he states, "It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart;...God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus."  In the book of Ephesians (1:15-17) Paul says he has not stopped giving thanks for his fellow Christians and keeps them in his prayers always asking God to continue blessing them with His spirit of wisdom and revelation.  These greetings of thanksgiving and prayer for his fellow Christians continues through each of the churches he addresses.  Paul was deeply committed to his love and devotion to Jesus Christ and it was this very same love that we heard and saw poured out onto other believers.

Some may ask, "If Paul loved his fellow Christians so much, then why was there such a spirit of correction taking place in each of his letters?"  Answer:  Paul did not want to see anyone fall away from Christ's teachings.  He noticed how the corrupt ways of the world were seeping into the church body and he made every effort to proclaim the truth for salvation.  Paul had to speak wisdom to correct the wrongdoing taking place before their worldly views began to corrupt others.  God's love for us is no different.  Sometimes He must discipline us in order to keep us on track, living for Him rather than living for our own selfish desires.

By the time Paul had neared the end of his ministry, he had matured so much in his love for Christ that he was willing to give up his own life if it meant others could be saved.  Do we see this type of love and compassion for our fellow believers sitting in the pew next to us each Sunday?  Are we worried and concerned enough about one another to hold each other accountable in our walk with the Lord so that His word does not fade from our hearts and minds?  Do we ache with longing to see and hear from our brothers and sisters in Christ on a regular basis.  Paul's language to his churches suggests his deep love for his brethren.  He supported them, encouraged them, inspired them and corrected them with love always as a guiding principle.

Today, it seems as though love is forgotten in the midst of every day life and certainly during conflict.  We forget Christ is in us and us in Him.  The first epistle of John in chapter 4 so eloquently describes God's spirit of love.  "No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us."   Verse 16:  God is love.  Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.  Verses 19-20:  We love because he first loved us.  If anyone says, " I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar.

This world has become caught up with those things that divide us instead of focusing on the one true component that unites us and this is why Jesus must return.  

"Every Day is a good day, when you live it God's Way!"

Be Blessed,

-Rebecca-    
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Thursday, May 3, 2012

Are you a reflection of Jesus?

As a moral people in a free society, we should always be working on ways to improve our character.  Jesus provided the ultimate example of how we should strive to live our lives.  The best way to reflect on areas in which we may need to improve is to simply compare ourselves to Jesus.            




STRENGTH

There should be no doubt that Jesus was the epitome of strength.  Forty days in the desert facing temptation by Satan and the grueling work completed on the cross should require no more discussion in this area.  However, I must make note of strength, not only referring to physical, but emotional and spiritual as well.  Not everyone is equally strong in each one of these areas, but we should consistently strive to evaluate where we fall short and continue to look to Jesus to provide in those areas in which we are lacking.

2 Corinthians 12:10 That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weakness, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.

We are made perfect in the area of strength when we look to Christ to complete in us what we cannot accomplish on our own.

So where do you stand in life with the characteristics of physical, emotional and spiritual strength?
-Do you give up before you ever get started putting physical limitations on yourself due to size or disability.  -Does the overwhelming nature of a task cause you to shrink away from success?
-Do you turn to other comfort items such as drugs (prescription and/or illicit), alcohol, unhealthy relationships, reckless spending or risky decision making instead of turning to Jesus to help you remain emotionally stable and confident?
-Do you read your bible to gain power and wisdom from it's word and seek Jesus through prayer to be able to fight the daily battles of defeat and discouragement in warding off urges toward sinful behavior?

These things are necessary in order for us to tap the strength of our God to overcome all obstacles in life!

Isaiah 28:29  All this also comes from the Lord Almighty, wonderful in counsel and magnificent in wisdom.

COURAGE

Think about the last time you were faced with a life obstacle in which you felt great fear.  Were you facing an illness or operation, the unexpected loss of a job, sentencing for a crime, divorce, or the threat of homelessness? 

Jesus understands your fears and so much more.  Before Jesus was to suffer, He traveled to Gethsemane with His disciples to pray and commune with His Father.  Mark 14:34 Jesus states, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death!"  Then he goes on to cry out to His Father, "Abba, Father, everything is possible for you.  Take this cup from me.  Yet not what I will, but what you will."


Jesus knew what he must face, but that didn't mean that it would be easy.  His flesh cried out in weakness, but in strength He vowed obedience to His father's will to be done over His own.  What an immeasurable sense of courage to face a death He knew would be brutal, all in the name of love. 


John 3:16  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Paul spoke to the Philippians about his joy in suffering for Christ because he knew others were beginning to fearlessly and courageously proclaim the gospel because of it (Philippians 1:14 NIV).  We must remember as Christians that whatever challenges we face in life, others will be taking notice, waiting to challenge us on the genuineness of our faith during such trials.  We must set an example to face trials with courage and boldness so that others may see the love of Christ in us during these times.


Will you face your fears with a new sense of courage, believing Jesus will give you peace to endure all challenges that come your way?  Daniel faced the lions and claimed victory unscathed in the the king's site; Shadrach,Meshach, and Abednego faced the fiery furnace and not a single hair on their heads were singed; Nehemiah faced the incredible task of rebuilding the wall while fending off enemies and yet completed the project in record time; David slayed Goliath when all others shrank in fear; Paul endured repeated persecution and refused to do anything less but profess God's word and demonstrate His glory through his suffering.

Where do you stand in the test of courage in your own life?  Do the words tolerance and politically correct silence you from speaking the truth?  Do you defend the weak and the innocent or label them unworthy and turn a blind eye?  Do you stand for justice in the midst of injustice or say, "It's none of my business?" 

God is looking for a few good men!

Look what Isaiah has to say about the state of our nation in chapter 59

"Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear.  But your iniquities have separated you from God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear... (12) For our offenses are many in your sight, and our sins testify against us.  Our offenses are ever with us, and we acknowledge our iniquities:  rebellion and treachery against the Lord, turning our backs on our God, fomenting oppression and revolt, uttering lies our hearts have conceived.  So Justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter. 

TRUTH IS NOWHERE TO BE FOUND AND WHOEVER SHUNS EVIL BECOMES PREY.

The Lord looked and was displeased that there was no justice.  He saw that there was no one to intervene; (Here is where it gets really good!)

SO HIS OWN ARM WORKED SALVATION FOR HIM, AND HIS OWN RIGHTEOUSNESS SUSTAINED HIM.  HE PUT ON RIGHTEOUSNESS AS HIS BREASTPLATE, AND THE HELMET OF SALVATION ON HIS HEAD; HE PUT ON GARMENTS OF VENGEANCE AND WRAPPED HIMSELF IN ZEAL AS IN A CLOAK!  Look out Star Wars!  It doesn't get any better than this!

Now there is the power of our God, who faces the iniquities of this world prepared for battle with unfathomable courage ready to overcome!

Where are the men and women who are armed with the word of God ready to do battle?  Forget what your friends might think, or whose opinion will be changed, God is calling for the Courage to stand!  Will You?


TRUTH

Truth has become a relative term.  It is not always easy to speak the truth, especially when it means incriminating ourselves or the ones we love.  Although telling the truth is difficult, it is necessary if we are to live a life close to Jesus.  The Pharisees and Sadducee's could not stand that Jesus exposed their lies and made them look foolish.  During a time of great hostility and division, Jesus continued to defend the truth, even to His death.  Lies are sin and unfortunately there are many ways in which we try to rationalize our behavior so we don't have to face our lies or fix them.  We must strive to live a life pleasing to our Lord by choosing the truth.  God can take any situation and redeem it, if we would just clean up our dirty closets.  The only way to discern the real truth as compared to what is being presented in this world is to open God's word and seek it! 



What are the lies in your life keeping you from reveling in the freedom offered by Jesus?

- Have you lied to your spouse about money or relationships?
- Have you lied to your employer about taking money, inventory or cheating the time clock?
- Have you lied to your child in making promises you knew you couldn't or wouldn't keep?
- Have you lied about your qualifications for a potential employment opportunity?
- Have you made up stories or distorted stories to be more popular with friends or coworkers?
- Have you lied on your taxes, cheated on a test, or not claimed your tips?


These are just a few examples of the many realms in which lies creep into our lives.  Jesus was blameless in this area and with His help you can experience a new freedom and a new peace.  We cannot point fingers at those around us who lie if we are not willing to demonstrate the truth in our own lives first.  Truth and courage go hand-in hand because it takes courage to tell the truth.

John 8:32  "Then you will know the truth, and the truth shall set you free."


STEWARD

The definition of steward is a person or administrator who is put in charge of an estate.  Jesus truly deserves this title and should be honored and glorified for it.  In one single act, He was able to set a world of sinners free.  It is more than sad, that people continue to reject this freedom.

God has made us stewards over many things:  Our environment, our children, our animals, our finances, and even our hearts and minds.  As His creation, He entrusted us to seek Him for wisdom and guidance to accomplish the task of managing the great resources of this world.  As we have put away God's word and have begun to rely more on man, our stewardship efforts have failed.  We now have the results of broken families, hurting, abused, and starving children, pesticide and hormone filled land and animals making us sick, financial debt that is too great to conceive, and a myth of global warming so elaborate only used to line the pockets of politicians.  These people have puffed themselves up as if they know greater than God how the destruction of our world will come about.  No where in the bible is there prophecy to support the notion of global warming.  God is the author of cyclical changes of the universe that he so delicately holds in His hands.  From the beginning of creation, our world has endured hot and cold changes, but it has not been to our demise.  Be careful who and what you listen to.  If you want to know about end times, read the book of Revelation, but you won't find evidence of global warming here either!

Finally, what are we doing to protect our hearts and minds from the lies of this world?  Our education system has become a storehouse of promoting false doctrine to our children.  In Mathew 12:34 Jesus addresses the Pharisees and calls them a brood of vipers!  He says, "How can you who are evil say anything good?  For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks."  Here is where we begin to understand that what we allow into our minds eventually affects our heart and from our heart is what we speak as truth.  If we are constantly believing the lies that our media feeds us, this will eventually corrupt our hearts and we will begin to speak to others the very lies that we have come to believe ourselves.  Make no mistake, here lately, our media has been exposed for their lies and this should be opening the eyes and ears of many to question everything they hear.  Check what you hear against the word of God.  Men have their own personal agenda that influences their decision making, God only has one thing on His mind and it is your personal salvation.  Now tell me, who has your best interests at stake?

We have an ordained responsibility to model good stewardship practices to our family, friends, children and coworkers.  What we do with this responsibility is up to us, but God is taking note of those who lead His sheep astray.

So, if you made it to the end of this post, How does your life compare to that lived by Jesus?  We are the clay and God is the potter.  Could you use a little molding and refining in some of the areas of your life?

Today is the National Day of Prayer.  It is a good day to start a new journey toward a kingdom promised!  Give your heart to the Lord and ask Him to bestow upon you Jesus like qualities that will help you overcome, persevere and enjoy great power and freedom to live with abundant joy!

Be Blessed

"Today is a good day, when you live it God's way!"

-Rebecca-










Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Are You Living His Destiny for Your Life?

Have you ever asked yourself the question, "Why am I here?"  What was your answer?  Perhaps you are still wondering!

Some people spend their whole lives asking themselves this question along with "Who am I?"  Perhaps they never fully feel satisfied because they haven't experienced the answer through divine revelation that can only come from having a relationship with Jesus Christ.

I'm sure everyone knows people who seem to be searching for answers to these two questions.  They bounce around from relationship to relationship, church to church, school to school, and job to job never seeming to find satisfaction in their work or life.  They may experience depression or seem to always be wearing different masks desperately trying to hide their emotional turmoil from a state of unhappiness.  Living a life just to satisfy yourself never does lead to complete fulfillment because God intended fullness to come from serving someone else.

Ephesians 4:11-13 "It was He who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ."

Have you ever had relationships with friends, family or coworkers in which you can almost immediately identify their special gifts or talents?  Believe it or not, sometimes we recognize other peoples gifts and talents before our own.  Young people especially are so vulnerable in wanting to find their special niche to set them apart from their peers.  Do them a favor, when you recognize their strengths and abilities, Point Them Out!  You would be surprised how your words may encourage them in just the right direction, at just the right time, to continue exploring the things they are good at.  This can greatly enhance self-esteem and impact a positive future direction in life.  God has awarded all of His children creative abilities to be used for the sole intended purpose of what was discussed in Ephesians 4:11.

I don't know how many times I have run into people that are running in the opposite direction from pursuing their passions and dreams (I can at times, include myself in this group).  There is such a strong desire in this culture for people to pursue jobs solely on the benefit of potential income.  A whole generation could be missing their calling and God's intended purpose for their lives because we have become so indoctrinated to believe that monetary success is the most important success.  Our God is such a mighty God!  Are we to believe that if God called us to do His work that He would not in some way bless and provide for our financial security?  God will make a way, but we must be willing to act for His benefit not ours and in His time, not ours.

Don't spend half your life trying to figure out what makes you happy.  God already knows these answers, just ask!  The question is, "Are you willing to explore a relationship with Jesus Christ so that you can experience the fullness of His glory in your life?


Lord, I have wandered around the wilderness for far too long.  I am ready to see my life as you see it.  I am ready to do the works you have predestined me to do.  Thank you for bestowing upon me special abilities, gifts and talents.  Now, please help me to be wise in using them for your glory.

Be Blessed,

"Today is a good day when you live it God's way!"

Rebecca

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