Tag Archives: Prayer

Our Reasonings Or God’s Secrets?

20 Jun

photo-1436228625646-f30c3e8447b0There are differences in imaginations, reasonings and the secret things of God. Do you know the difference?

Dan 2:22-23   22 He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him. 23 I thank and praise you, O God of my fathers: You have given me wisdom and power, you have made known to me what we asked of you. . .NIV

When adversity and/or great tribulation comes our way – suddenly and unexpected at times – our first reactions will speak loudly of what we believe about God and how much we trust Him.

2 Cor 10:3-5   For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, 5 casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.  NKJV

At times, circumstances arise for which we have no control and no knowledge of how to handle them or cope with them.  Our imaginations begin to run wild. We begin to let the events play over and over in our minds. We lose our composure and our emotions are completely unstable. Our peace goes out the window. Confusion sets in and we find it difficult to focus on any one thing. We find ourselves in the midst of a dreadful storm. The waves are high all around us, the water is rough and our boat is being tossed uncontrollably.  We have to do something, but what? This is where our reasoning comes in.

I found myself in similar circumstances recently.  I am a child of God. I serve Him and walk with Him daily.  I know His Word teaches me to keep my mind stayed on Him and He will keep me in perfect peace.

Isa 26:33 You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. NKJV

Keeping our minds stayed on God during trying times is a deliberate action on our part. It is not always an automatic response on our part.  Walking with God doesn’t come naturally to us, as does walking in the flesh. It always comes down to choice. It is never easy, as we determine what easy means. The difficulty lies in giving all of it to God. Easy to say, hard to do. The struggle within us is almost unbearable at times.  While God is telling us to be still and trust Him,  the turmoil within us is screaming for us to do something quickly!

Our faith and trust in God is tested in these life events.  As we walk with God, on a daily basis, constantly acknowledging Him and seeking Him, we being to be more aware of His presence. At times, we feel that He isn’t nearby, that He is far away and we are alone in our situation. The way we “feel” doesn’t determine the truth. Jesus IS the truth and He is THE WAY. What that means is HE is the one we focus on during these trying times. Only He can guide us to the answers we seek. As we begin to develop our relationship with Him and turn to Him in all things, from the smallest action to the most important, the faster we can  overcome our own reasonings and imaginations.

Ps 119:105-107  Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path. 106 I have taken an oath and confirmed it, that I will follow your righteous laws. 107 I have suffered much; preserve my life, O LORD, according to your word. NIVP

119:108-109  108 Accept, O LORD, the willing praise of my mouth,
and teach me your laws. 109 Though I constantly take my life in my hands,
I will not forget your law.  NIV

Picture a lamp at your feet in the darkness. It lights up only a small portion of what is ahead of you. We can’t see what is ahead or around the corner. We can only see where the next step is. That is how to follow God daily; especially in the midst of trials and tribulations. We should grab our lamp and let God lead. Otherwise, we will stumble and fall in the darkness. Of course, we can get back up and stumble some more. Or, we can pick up God’s lamp (His Word, His guidance) and avoid the pitfalls.

God has the answers. He IS the solution. His timing is perfect. He knows the way we take.  He knows the pitfalls. Why not take His hand and “The Lamp” and let Him show us the way?

Merriam Webster’s Definition of “Reason” (ing)  

  1. a (1) :  the power of comprehending, inferring, or thinking especially in orderly rational ways :  intelligence (2) :  proper exercise of the mind (3) :  sanityb :  the sum of the intellectual powers

  2. 3archaic :  treatment that affords satisfaction

This is what faith is:

Heb 11:1  11:1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.  NIV

As God’s children, we don’t live and walk by what we see. The circumstances can change. We can change our minds or make wrong decisions. God is the ONE who IS the Way.

When trials come (and they will)  God wants us to run to Him FIRST, not last. He alone knows what we should do. We can’t expect Him to bless our decisions if He is not in them.  He wants our love and our friendship.  Do we want it as much as He does? Or would we rather stumble around in the dark hoping we miss the pitfalls? He leaves the choice to us.

 

 

 

 

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What Is Your Goliath?

22 Mar

Watch Out For The Giants

1 Sam 17:4-7   4 A champion named Goliath , who was from Gath, came out of the Philistine camp. He was over nine feet tall. 5 He had a bronze helmet on his head and wore a coat of scale armor of bronze weighing five thousand shekels; 6 on his legs he wore bronze greaves, and a bronze javelin was slung on his back. 7 His spear shaft was like a weaver’s rod, and its iron point weighed six hundred shekels. His shield bearer went ahead of him.  NIV

I’ve been facing Goliath for several months – circling him with my sling, trying to work up the courage to let God be God, and to trust Him to guide that small stone from my sling to the Goliath that I face. While circling my thoughts run rampant. “What if I miss the target?” “What if I make things worse than they already are?” “Maybe I should just drop this sling and stones and just run.” “There must be another way out.”  Goliath was a giant – he was huge, and scary. His voice thundered and he roared at the soldiers, and they were all afraid. No one had ever escaped this giant. To fight him meant sure death in their eyes.

This story in 1 Samuel describes how we feel when facing the giants we face in our lives today. I have been facing several for months now and have allowed them to beat me down so far that everything seemed hopeless. I admit that reluctantly because now that I have come out of it I am disappointed that I allowed it for so long. It happens slowly – very slowly. That’s why the enemy can beat us down so far. We get our eyes off Jesus and begin to give in to negative thoughts.

How It Happens

Here’s how it happened with me. It wasn’t obvious or intentional. My focus changed gradually to my circumstances and my lack – things I wanted and couldn’t have or make happen. That’s when the reasoning takes over and the doubting. Dread steps in along with fear. Worry takes over working itself up to outright fear.

The trip down wasn’t obvious. Everything seemed to be going along the same as usual – until it wasn’t. I was already praying and doing all I knew to do, thinking I had a handle on everything. I found myself walking around my home asking God what was wrong with me. Depression and lethargy were taking over every moment of my day. This was my Goliath.

So, What Do I Do About It?

I had already been praying and searching for answers – doing all I could to force myself to keep putting one foot in front of the other. I had been fighting a bad chest cold and cough which was making matters worse. After about six weeks I began to feel better which immediately made my outlook better to begin with.

God seemed to be sitting back and letting me flounder. I’m not blaming Him, I just don’t   understand why it takes so long sometimes for me to get it! But – in the process – I am discovering things about myself that need to be fixed. And, so I did.

A couple of days ago I was watching a very old movie that caught my eye, simply called “Goliath.” I knew the story. It caught my eye because many years ago God had nudged me to read and study about David and Goliath. I was going through some traumatic things and His Word in the Bible is always encouraging.

I had heard the story from childhood and all throughout my adult life. I have read it many times. (Hint: Never assume you already know it all or that God’s Word, even though you might have memorized it, isn’t new every morning.) God’s Word is progressive. It IS new every time you read it.

Back to the movie. At first it didn’t seem very exciting – the scene was in a desert with only sand and rocks and soldiers. Didn’t matter – I was multi-tasking – playing solitaire on my tablet. I looked up every now and then to catch a glimpse of the characters. I especially wanted to see who was cast to play David – the young shepherd boy God had anointed to be the next King. I also wanted to take a look at Goliath to see just how big and mean he looked. He looked about like I suspected. But . . .

David – the young shepherd boy who would one day become King as God had decreed and Samuel had anointed – that was a different story. He wasn’t as I imagined him at all. He truly looked like a young teenage boy.

God Doesn’t Look At Things The Way We Do

Saul’s soldiers were dressed in sharp-looking uniforms with great helmets, shields and swords. The opposing group looked very scary and mean. Goliath was taunting God’s men saying awful things about what he was going to do to them, and his mission was accomplished – they were scared. They had heard of his reputation and knew that no one had every survived his attacks. None of the soldiers would volunteer to fight him.

David just happened to be there to deliver food to his brothers. It’s hard to imagine a war where the men are so close that they can yell at one another, but that’s how it was. David heard Goliath taunting the soldiers of God and couldn’t believe that they were allowing him to do so. After all, he was God’s enemy and David couldn’t understand why Goliath was being allowed to  get away with his taunting and his  threats.

Continued . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Thank You” Doesn’t Seem Sufficient

11 Nov

I’m not in a habit of posting my personal prayers here, but this morning my time spent with my Heavenly Father was an expression of love that I want all the world to experience. I pray that as you read this you will open your hearts to a real, approachable God who loves you and wants your love in return.

My Father – my Lord – my King, and my Friend; my Counselor – my provider – You are so good, and so kind. You are beyond earthly words. My heart overflows with love for You. You are so immersed in everything around me. I see You in all things. You are my anchor. I am tethered to You and that brings security to my heart and soul. I search for words to express my love and adoration, but I cannot find them. My  heart is filled with gratitude for the peace and joy You bring to my heart.

Thank You doesn’t seem sufficient. I am grateful that You can see my heart, and know my every thought. All I have, and all I am are because of You. I could do nothing on my own. You open my eyes to many new things – things I would not know – they are beyond my capacity and my abilities. You create in me new things each day. I want the world to know You. I want them to know You are a real, and personal God available on a level that no one else is. You give me a love the world cannot possibly give because it is beyond their ability.

Even through all my hurt and pain – my weaknesses – my faults – my mistakes – my habits – You still love me with a love I can’t understand or explain. You satisfy my every longing. My every fear melts away because I know You are there shielding me. Nothing can breach the barricade you have place around me.

In every sorrow I have experienced – in every loss – in every trial and tribulation – You rise above them. Your presence and Your Spirit engulf me. You put all the pieces of my broken heart back together. You replace all doubt and fear with faith and hope in the future.

No matter how weak and frail my mind and body might become, You hold me in the palm of your hand as I look to You, knowing You are not going to let anything touch me that will destroy my spirit. I will be with You forever, and forever – no matter the state of my body or my mind or my emotions. My Spirit is one with Yours, and nothing by any means can hurt me.

Thank You, My Father, for a love the world cannot give – for Your peace that far exceeds my understanding – for the assurance that I will spend eternity with You and all those who have gone before me, and who will come after me.

In the mighty, precious blood and name of Jesus, Your Son, I pray. Amen

NOTE: – I shared this prayer with you because I want you to know Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour and the Holy Spirit. There is no other love or thing in this world that can fill any void in your life except for Him. There is no other God – no pill – no drink – no sex – no material thing – no experience that will ever satisfy you like the love, joy and forgiveness given to you by God. All you have to do is ask Him. Ask Him to forgive you of your sins, your mistakes and anything that concerns you. It’s not difficult – He will meet you right where you are – just as you are. He will give you what nothing else in this world can give you – the love and acceptance you long for.

I pray for every soul that reads this prayer. I pray that through it you will gain a sense of God’s outrageous love for you – so much so that He really did sacrifice His one and only Son, Jesus, so that you and everyone in the world as the choice of everlasting life in heaven with Him over hell and damnation. He loves you so much that He wants you to love Him because you want to, not because He can make you do it.

This will be the most important decision you ever make. Your future depends on it.

May the peace of God that passes all understanding be with you.

A Done Deal

24 Jan

Following is my latest entry to a weekly writing challenge at FaithWriters.com:

Pat Robertson said, “The Bible is not only a book about an ancient people but also a book as current as today’s newspaper headlines.” I would add that the same goes for God. He is not ancient. He is just as relevant today as He was when the Bible was written.

Having said that, let me introduce you to the God of the universe whose being is endless – whose love is endless – whose understanding is endless – and whose forgiveness is endless. He is my creator – my redeemer – my constant companion and my friend. You can have all of this – His love and His friendship, too. God made it simple. All you have to do is ask!

There is no form to fill out, no special requirements, no ceremony required. You don’t have to change anything to make yourself acceptable. Your invitation for Him to come into your heart, and your request for Him to forgive your sins, is all that is required. He loves you just as you are and wants you as His own. He won’t turn you away.

We were all born into a world full of sin and somehow inclined to discriminate about it. We have the idea that there are some sins that aren’t as bad as others. That is just not true. To God, sin is sin.

From the moment – the very moment – you invite Jesus into your heart and ask Him to forgive your sins, it is a done deal! You have a brand new, clean heart and are instantly a part of the family of God – His child. The simplicity of it may be hard to accept. He is, after all, the God of the universe and everything in it.

Jesus paid an enormous price so we wouldn’t have to. He died on the cross to make it happen. I can’t explain it. But, I experience His love, His guidance and His friendship every day.

When you invite Him into your life, you may not feel any different, but you will be. Your heart will be cleansed of all sin and the Holy Spirit of God enters into your clean heart. He then becomes your teacher, your helper and your counselor. He speaks to you by making an impression in your spirit (your heart) of what is true and what is false.

God is a Spirit. We relate to Him with our spirits (hearts), not our souls (emotions), or our bodies (flesh). Being a child of God is all about faith. Living by faith means we don’t make decisions by what we see or by circumstances that may pressure us. We go to God in prayer, and apply our faith. We believe that He hears us and will guide us into all truth by His Holy Spirit as He promised.

The next step is to become acquainted with God. You can get to know Him intimately by reading the Bible. The deep things of God can only be understood by those who have accepted Him.

God inspired men long ago to record the events that were taking place before and after Jesus was born, so we would have examples to follow and could learn about His ways. In Bible times people were ordinary, like us. They made mistakes, big ones. But God loved them enough to use many of them to do great things. We too, can learn how to know God’s will and how to avoid making bad choices as we study His Word and the Holy Spirit reveals truth to us.

You can also talk with God any time – He is always listening. He will communicate with you and He will make certain you recognize His voice in your spirit. As you make decisions, the Holy Spirit will guide you through a situation with peace in your heart or the absence of it, depending on the course of action He wants you to take.

Knowing and experiencing God is like nothing you have ever known. Your relationship with Him will be unique. He will make Himself known to you so that you will experience Him personally and learn just how much He loves you.

Becoming a child of God doesn’t mean that you will have no more adversity. Indeed, you will. But, He will be with you every step of the way. He will never leave you or forsake you. He is yours and you are His through all eternity.

A Love Letter to My Lord

17 Jan

My Lord – My King – My Father and My Friend;

I cannot do anything without you. There is no one else like you. I just need to be in your presence. I need to be with you. I fall short in so many ways.

My frustration melts away when I come into your presence. I know that I don’t even have to speak a word – just sit at your feet and soak up your love. It is truly inexplicable!

When nothing feels right around me, I know you are there – loving me – touching my heart – looking into my inner most thoughts and fears – my doubts and hurts – all my concerns. I feel inadequate to put into words all the things that constantly fight for a place in my mind for attention – all to keep me from you and your presence.

Oh, how I love you. You have proved yourself strong in so many ways. You are such a personal friend. I wish with all my heart that all your people could give themselves fully to you and know your love.

Breathe upon me, Lord. Nothing satisfies like you, my God. Forgive me for the times I walk in rebellion to your instruction. It is so hard sometimes to yield to you. My flesh is so weak and wants gratification. Help me to see that gratification comes from you alone and nothing else will do.

June 24, 2009

At The End Of The Day

10 Jan

As a project oriented person, I get up early and sometimes decide there isn’t enough time in the day to meet all my deadlines. That “feeling” gets the best of me and I start the day all wrong.

I have answered a call from God to lead a prayer team ministry for my church and have committed to spend time with Him each morning in intercession. I am usually excited about it.

Some days my workload is so heavy that it is difficult to sit still and focus on prayer. So, I decide to skip my appointment with God and go right to work. That decision is based on a thought placed in my mind by Satan who comes to kill, steal, and destroy.

When I listen to the thoughts in my mind, rather than to the Holy Spirit, my days are usually filled with confusion, turmoil, and frustration. When the day is gone I have accomplished very little. I realize that my precious time, with the one I love the most and the one who trusted me enough to call me to the ministry of prayer, was stolen. He called me to stand in the gap for His people. Instead, I let inner turmoil and unrest get the best of me. I yielded to the deceitful lure of the clock not giving me enough time to meet deadlines in my work-day. I should have kept my appointment with the one who promised to direct my steps.

At the day’s end I look back at the time I wasted. At first, guilt creeps in because I knew better. The enemy managed to gain control of my first thoughts that morning. And at the end of the day, he tried to condemn me for listening to him. At the same time, he whispered in my ear just how little I must love God not to spend time with Him as I had promised. The enemy was attempting to steal my peace again. Quickly, I shut him down. Then, the conviction of the Holy Spirit turned my heart to God to ask for forgiveness, which was immediate. The Holy Spirit gently instructed me that if I had spent time with Him first, my day would have been much better.

God is the one who makes all things work together for good and blesses the work of my hand. He is the one who tells me I can make my plans but He will direct my path. He is the one who gives me the wisdom and knowledge I need to make my day successful. God is the one who rebukes the devourer for my sake. And, with His help, I can successfully finish my daily race.

The day’s end is determined by the day’s beginning. The choice I make at the beginning of each day to spend those first moments with my Lord or to proceed without His direction will determine what I accomplish and how emotionally, physically and spiritually spent I become. I want my day, every day, to begin with Him, remain in Him, and finish with Him. At the end of the day I want to hear Him say, “Well done my good and faithful servant“. I want to feel His peace in my spirit, knowing I have given everything to Him.


I’ll Let God Know When I Need Him

2 Jul

God wants all of you and all of me. Proverbs 3:6 says “In all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your path”. Do you give Him more than a token five or ten minutes of quiet time? Do you acknowledge Him in ALL your ways? That means do you consider what God wants from you each time you make a decision? Or, just when you can’t come up with a solution?

God wants more than our church attendance and our participation on committees, and ministries that are self-serving by putting us in the spotlight. God wants a relationship with us! He has the answers we need. He is faithful.

God wants to be the Lord of our lives. He’s not our indulgent grandfather – too old to really understand the world we live in today. How could we even think that we are too far advanced for our God? Is it because He once used a small boy with a slingshot and three small stones to kill a giant?

Even though we may sometimes have a hard time accepting the fact that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit really are relevant in our modern world,predictions were made in the Bible concerning the marvels we are witnessing today.

There is so much knowledge available to us, at our fingertips. In truth, we’re just too busy – even with good things – to give time to the Lord and let Him guide us in every situation. We know He’s there and we know we can call out to Him when we’ve exhausted all our other resources.

Most of us may be satisfied just knowing God is around when we need Him. Then, if and when we truly get in over our heads, we’ll call out to Him. However; more than likely, we have probably already decided on a course of action. Let’s face it, we think we can manage on our own most of the time. The truth is in the message of one of my favorite songs, “I Can’t Even Walk Without Him Holding My Hand“.

“In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He Shall direct your paths”.
Proverbs 3:6

God Is Talking To You – Are You Listening?

24 Jun

Yes, if you are a born-again believer in Jesus Christ, God speaks to you! You think not? The Bible clearly tells us that Jesus said. “My sheep know my voice and the voice of another they will not follow”! If you are one of His sheep, you know His voice. You may not yet recognize it or even know how to recognize it, but He IS speaking to you.

It is critical that we know how to hear God speak to us if we want to be able to truly know Him and be led by Him into His perfect will for our lives. God speaks to us through His Holy Spirit – to our hearts. There are many different ways He speaks, but when we begin to recognize His voice, it will always, always be in line with the Bible, God’s Word – already given to us. I like to explain it by saying that it is kind of like making a new friend. At first, when our new friend calls us, we may not recognize their voice. But, we talk to them more and more, the better we get to know them. Eventually, we will recognize their voice immediately.

The more time we spend with our new friends, the better we get to know them. It works the same way with God. The big difference is He already knows us. He knew us in our Mother’s womb. As we read His Word, we learn more about Him. As we read about characters in the Bible we find that they all were plain, ordinary people like we are. You see, Moses only performed the mighty task of leading God’s people out of slavery because God called him to do it. Moses, argued with God and did his best to convince God that he was not capable to do what God wanted because he wasn’t good enough. God does not called the equipped – He equips the called. God knows how to get your attention. But, like anyone else talking to us, we have to pay attention. We have to listen.

God wants to be our friend – yes, He does. I know it is hard to believe. Friends talk. And, it’s not just one-sided. We talk, we listen. So, if we listen, God must be speaking. If you are a born-again believer, have accepted Jesus Christ into your heart, then you are His child and he speaks to you. It is as simple as that. You will need to develop a sensitivity to listening to Him. He speaks in many different ways. When you accepted Jesus into your heart, the Holy Spirit took up residence there. Part of His duty is to change your heart so that you understand the ways of God – He helps you to rightly divide God’s Word from the other words that try to overcome you.

You cannot rightly divide God’s Word if you don’t read it. God’s Word, the Holy Bible, was written by men who were inspired by God’s Holy Spirit. There is nothing to be added to it and nothing to be taken away from it. As we read the Scriptures, we learn about God and His ways. We are taught how to distinguish God’s ways from man’s ways. We can clearly identify with the men and women of the Bible because they were the same as we are. They weren’t super human, holy individuals who led perfect lives of peace and glory. They made mistakes – bad mistakes – mistakes like we make today. So, as we read about them, we learn how God dealt with them. We see how much God loved them. We see how they disobeyed and the consequences they paid or the blessings they received from doing as God directed.

The voices we hear in our minds come from a myriad of different places. He speaks in a still small voice to our hearts. Sometimes, so small that we ignore it. God speaks to us through friends, Pastors, nature, children – just about any way you can imagine. What makes it possible is the Holy Spirit within us. So, we can’t just believe everything we think we hear. All things that we hear aren’t in agreement with God’s written Word. If we hear something that doesn’t fall in line with the Bible, it isn’t God speaking. So, how can we know it’s God if we don’t read His Word?

When Circumstances Take You Off Guard . . .

10 Jun

Chapter 91 of Psalms gives us great assurance that we will prevail in every area of our lives as we dwell in the shelter of God. It IS possible. God promises us that He is always with us. No matter what we face in life, He is walking beside us. We can trust Him. He is our protector. We don’t have to be afraid.

• Taken from Ps 91:1-10

• 1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

We can trust that God has protected us from many traps that the enemy has set for us. By His divine grace He preserves our spirit and protects us from many temptations that the enemy sends our way. God is constantly watching over us to protect us from the things we cannot see.

• 4 He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

Tenderly God covers us with His wings and keeps a sheltered at all times. Many things are happening in the spiritual realm that we are unaware of. However; God is aware.

• 5 You will not fear the terror of night, the arrow that flies by day, 6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.
• 7 A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. 8 You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.

God tells us all throughout His word not to fear. We don’t have to be afraid in the night or during the day. When we look around and see all of this happening the enemy will use it to bring fear to our minds. Things may be happening all around us but God’s Word says that even though 1,000 may fall at our sides and 10,000 at our right hands it won’t come near us.

We all obviously come very close to the happenings around us. Sometimes we find ourselves physically and emotionally in the middle of it all. But, our God promises in this Scripture to be there with us. He will also walk us through whatever situation we find ourselves facing. He will lead us out. In the event we do face death, we are promised a mansion in heaven and eternal life, if we make Jesus our Lord and Savior. So, nothing that comes our way can touch us that God does not allow. His plan is to always work things out for our good.

As we walk daily with the Lord and develop an intimate relationship with Him, He will make Himself known to us in so many ways. God knows just how to get our attention. He knows what will speak to our hearts. His desire is for us to trust Him with all of our heart and soul, and with our minds.

It has been said that worry is suffering in advance. Fear is not from God. Fear will haunt us continually if we allow it too. God has given us everything we need to fight the spiritual battles that continually arise to defeat us. God has given us His Word with promise after promise to protect us, to guide us, to warn us of things to come and to keep us at peace if we will keep our mind stayed on Him.

To keep our minds stayed on God indicates that we have a choice to make when confronted with situations that would cause fear, frustration, anger or anything else that would try to disrupt the peace and joy that God has so freely given to us. We can choose not to fret and worry. This is not to say that at times we may be caught off guard. Our enemy, satan, strives to catch us off guard. Our first response may be panic. Our minds begin to race and our emotions are deeply stirred. We immediately begin to come up with a plan of how to handle the current situation.

On the other hand, as our personal relationship with our Heavenly Father develops, we will soon learn how to turn immediately to God when faced with surprise attacks from our enemy, satan.

• 9 If you make the Most High your dwelling — even the LORD, who is my refuge — 10 then no harm will befall you no disaster will come near your tent.

In this quote from Psalms, God wants us to see that there is nothing that can harm us. He is there for us in every situation we face. Yes, we will have difficulty in our lives. There will be circumstances arise that will try to defeat us. We will eventually learn that our first response should always be to call on God. He is there and He will guide us and direct us. He will encourage us and reassure us that He is there to see us through whatever it is that seems bigger than life at the moment.

Spending time daily in prayer and with God’s word is the answer to developing our relationship with Him and allowing Him access to our hearts so that we can make necessary changes in the way we think and feel about the circumstances that surround us.

Let Your Faith Be Seen!

12 Jan

Matthew 9:2 says, “When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, ‘Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you'”.

Charles Stanley, in his Life Lessons Bible, notes that it would be hard to “see” faith if it never worked its way out in meaningful action. He said that if our faith does not affect the way we live or ever get noticed by others, then perhaps it is not genuine faith at all.

As I read that in my prayer time this morning, it excited me. Many things came to my mind about faith. For example, many times we feel led by God to do something that may appear strange to others. As they begin to give us “their opinion” we begin to reason and sometimes even allow the words of others to cause us to stumble.

For the record, the word “opinion” is the view of the other person and their view of the worth or of the value of someone or something. And, according to the Thesaurus, another word for opinion is “judgment”. Just sayin’.

This works both ways. Let’s make sure we are not the ones to cause someone to stumble. After all, our opinions are just that – they are our opinions. If we give our opinion we should make sure that the person we are speaking to understands that even though we are giving our opinion on a matter — it is them who is responsible for following God’s direction. We never want to be guilty of overriding God’s direction to someone. That’s a little scary to me.

On the other hand, if we are the one presenting our situation to another about what we believe God is saying to us, we need to leave the consequences to God (another of Charles Stanley’s Life Principles). We can’t know what God is doing in someone’s life. That’s why we are told not to judge others.

I can tell you, I have done some things at God’s leading that have thoroughly convinced others that I may not be of sound mind. But, I have learned to hear the voice of my Lord and Savior and it is Him I want to please. It is important that we share with others and not hide our light under a bushel. God uses us in ways we can’t know. Others are watching and they “see” our faith in action. Then, they “see” when God steps in and takes control.

Let your faith be seen. Don’t be afraid of what others think. Don’t hide your light under a bushel. Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine. I think it’s wonderful when we have others praying for us and they become a part of God’s miracle in our lives. This is how we share one another’s burdens. This is how our faith grows.

Keep in mind that even Moses looked like a failure in men’s eyes, even as he was following God’s direction to the letter. Those around him doubted him and what he said. But, then they “saw” his faith through the works of God.

Ask God today to help you show your faith to others. And, ask Him to help you to encourage others and to be careful of any words of doubt you may speak.

Obviously, all things we hear are not from God. But, let’s not be too quick to judge. That’s why we need prayer and God’s Word to speak to our hearts and show us the truth.

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