"Count it all joy when you fall into various trials."

Posts tagged ‘Holy Spirit’

The Truth About Who I Am

I am a child growing up in the love of God.   He is the King of everything and I am royalty in training.

Father, my Papa, loves me so much that He sent His only Son to give me a ‘get out of jail free’ card.

When I realized that Christ Jesus was something more than a story in Blinded-by-the-lies-of-the-worlda Book, I wept.  Christ understood that I couldn’t help myself.  He knew how the human race had hurt His Father when we rejected Him but He came for us anyway.

At the moment I accepted the Son, the Father adopted me into His family. I am now His child growing toward maturity into the maturity of a son.   My big brother Christ Jesus rescued me and sent His own Spirit to live in me.  I have the potential to listen and learn how to walk in victory and authority on the earth.

I can ‘miss the mark’ that He has set for me by doing things I did before I accepted His gift jesusandusinheavenof salvation.  I feel conviction when it happens but He never condemns me.  I have learned that condemnation is the only weapon that Satan has; so I know when I feel condemned, all I have to do is turn around because my Papa is waiting for me.  He reaches out and loves me, draws me back out of the situation and says, “I’ve got you, It is all right.”  He is my Papa and I am His child and He doesn’t treat  me like He would treat a stranger.

When my children were young, if they took $20 out of my purse, I would treat them differently than if a neighbor child came into our home and stole money from me.  It is the same for me now.  When I do something I may have done before I was adopted, my heavenly Father treats me differently than the people of the world

So as His child, I depend on my Father for everything I need.  I know He will discipline me if I get off the track, but always He will love me and be there with His arms open wide when I turn around and look to Him in anything and everything.

My identity is not a sinner because then my father would be the devil; my identity is in my relationship with my Father God because of what my big Brother did by paying price for my sin.  Therefore I am not a sinner saved by grace; I am a saint, a child of the Living God who is the King of everything.

My job as a child is to listen to His voice and learn to walk in obedience and delight in His Presence.  It is to make Him proud of me because I listen when He speaks and do what He says.

An earthly parent is patient with their new baby and helps him as he develops into the toddler and other phases of his life, our heavenly Father is even more patient with me as I grow in His love.Secret place

Psalms 91 is about living in the Secret Place with Him and as I learn more of how to set my love on Him, He delivers me and honors me.  The benefits of being part of His royal family are out of this world.  This is why I am on the joy journey!!

 

Aside

Feelings

coasterWhy do we think that we have to feel something or it isn’t real?  Feelings are fickle and we even buy them by riding on roller coasters or going to scary movies.

Morris Albert wrote:

Feelings, nothing more than feelings,
Trying to forget my feelings of love.
Teardrops rolling down on my face,
Trying to forget my feelings of love.

You know that within the year he met another woman that caused him to forget the feelings that he had for her in the first place.

We do this with God too.  I didn’t feel anything so it must not be real.  Or I can’t see Him and I only believe what I see.  You can’t see the wind but you can feel it – does that mess with you?

We can’t see God and so some dismiss Him out of hand.  But He is more real than anything that we see or feel orHoly Spirit understand.  He witnesses to us in the Autumn colors, the Spring flower, the majestic mountains and the snow flakes.  It is beyond random chance that these miracles could happen.

Open your heart and allow the Spirit of God to bring change and I promise that in time, the feeling will follow!

Aside

Religion is ugly . . .

church lady What time is it?

It is Sunday – time to go to church again, time to put on the fake smile and the nice clothes and pretend that  everything is all right.

It is time to watch Miss Anna walk around like she owns the church, greeting people and being pulled into her  little clique of insiders as she moves through the congregation.  She belongs and wants you to know it.

Time to dodge Miss Anna as she comes up with the beaming smile and asks, “How are you doing with Jesus?”   I never know what to say and I wonder if she is talking about my Jesus.  I never feel like I belong.  I feel like an  outsider even though I asked Jesus into my life ten years ago.

It is time to listen to another sermon about what is wrong with me.  Pastor seldom talks about Jesus.  I ask  myself, “Is this why Jesus died in such agony?  Is this why He descended into hell?  Is this why He rose again  from the dead – so He could provide us the freedom of resurrection life?

The only time I hear about the resurrection is Easter.

I don’t see anyone at church who is free.

Today’s Joy Message:

It is time to know that religion is ugly and cuts you off from the glory of God.  It is stupid and ignorant.  So how did we become religious?

Once upon a time, long ago, Adam committed treason and we were trapped in his Fall.  The enemy took the truth of God’s Word and twisted it forming a system in us called religion.  It teaches us how to kill God and failing that – how God wants to kill us.  Religion teaches that we earn a right standing with God through legalistic rules and regulations that are man-made.

In the beginning of time, God knew that we would need to be free from this deception of religion.  He provided the Way through Jesus Christ who spoke of the Kingdom of God and our Father God’s love for us.  He told us that God is good and only does good.  His Spirit still speaks to us today and fills us with His love.

God hates religion because it thinks it speaks for Him, but it doesn’t.

The  time will come when the self-appointed ‘holy’ people will want to enter the Kingdom of Heaven because they cast out demons and healed the sick, but He will say, “Depart from me, I never knew you.”  If God can use a donkey, He can use a religious person to get a blessing to someone through the spoken Word about the God he doesn’t even know.  God always looks after His Word to perform it.

The traditional church is not the same as the true church which is the body of Christ.  They love each other and minister to one another and the world.

Time for today’s challenge.  Examine your church life – is it alive and active or is it man’s traditions void of life and love.

  • Are you a ‘church lady’ or ‘holy man’ who is really impressed with your own self?
  • Do you truly know God?
  •  Have you allowed the Lord to take over and help you really be the church yourself?
  • Are you free to listen to the voice of the Lord and then do what He says

The Resurrection of Christ – King Jesus Ministries.  An amazing teaching.

Rest? Who Has Time to Rest?

Every day is full.  It is Springtime after all.  I feed the hummingbirds and are they ever hungry!  I have gardening to do including opening the fountains and cleaning the outdoor living spaces.  The house needs to be power-washed and the deck must be painted.

I am busy with church.  Friday night, I will be making food for a special dinner.  The annual church tent sale will require some time, as well.

I have started a new business and try to spend about four hours on the phone each day getting it up and running.     This has nothing to do with the day-to-day household chores.

I love to blog and it has been totally neglected by my “busy-ness.”

I can always find something that needs to be done and I know that I am not alone in this.  “Martha, Martha” is not a quote that I want to hear from Jesus.

When I read Ransomed Heart’s blog,  I was convicted that I had things out-of-order.  Here is a quick quote from that post.

All you athletes out there know that runners need rest days to recover and repair muscles in order to get stronger. Runner’s World says, “It is important to realize rest days are when improvements are actually made as opposed to during the days when the runner is training.”  Who knew?

Intentionally resting is vital for all of us.”

She ends the post with the quote our church has on our tee shirts.

Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Matthew 11:28-30 MSG)

So, the question is, “Why, when I know resting in His Presence is my necessary food, do I put it at the bottom of my ‘to-do’ list?”

Today, I am laying aside all that creates pressure in my life and going into the throne room to rest in my Daddy’s everlasting arms.  I will trust Him that all will wait until I get re-acquainted with the One who loves me.

Will you?

A Pure Heart

Vivian and Abner were pushing forty when they married.  The desire of their hearts was to have a child.  They knew the risks and yet were completely delighted when Viv found out she was pregnant.  They rejoiced in the Lord and began to speak to the little one in her womb.  Every day they spoke of Jesus and read Scripture and put worship songs on in their home.  The atmosphere was filled with the love of God.

The day came when Vivian went into labor and they were filled with anticipation.  It was an easy delivery but immediately the doctor seemed to be concerned.  He took the baby and left the delivery room.  After Viv was put in recovery, Abner and the doctor came in and told her that the baby had Down syndrome.  There would be challenges. There were some health issues that they may face and almost assuredly the baby would have some degree of mental retardation.  The nurse brought the sweet little bundle and laid him in her arms.

“I want to name him David ,” she said.  David slew Goliath and I believe this baby will be victorious no matter what the doctor says.

The years passed and little David was taught about the Lord every day.  He reached his teenage years and had learned how mean other kids were to anyone who was different.  They called him names and bullied him.  He just responded with love and remembered that Jesus loved him.  God began to show him what was true in the Spirit.  He saw angels and heard God’s voice.  He never felt alone.  He had the most amazing child-like trust that those who took the time to get to know him realized that he knew far more about almost all important things than they did.

Then it happened.  A troubled young man came into the school waving a gun, David’s classmates and teachers began to move in confusion.  David quietly said, “Step into the closet and close the door.  There are angels guarding the door.”  Many of the kids responded by crowding into the small space and soon the rest joined them.  The teacher followed them in. David didn’t go in the closet.

He stepped into the hallway and turned toward the man.  He had seen him at church a few times and knew that he was lost and alone.  He called his name, “Mr. Glen, what are you doing?”  He looked at David confused and began to wave the gun in his direction.  David looked at him and said, “You can’t hurt me, I have God’s angels to protect me.  I want to help you.”  Glen raised the gun and pointed it at David and pulled the trigger.  The gun didn’t fire.  He pulled the trigger again.  Nothing.  He looked at David and started to cry.

David walked up to Glen and took the gun and invited him to sit down.  By this time, the police had arrived and they took Glen while dismissing David as a mentally retarded boy who was of no consequence.  David didn’t care.  He knows who he is and who he belongs to.  Jesus lives in him and the heavenly host are his guard.

It was just as his Mom knew when she named him.  This little David defeated the Goliath that threatened the life of Glen and the school children as well as the teachers.

Today’s Lesson:

Unlike David, we are too smart for our own good.  We are not simple in our faith.  Often we complicate things and mix law with grace. We make it all about us.  It is only and always about Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit and Father God.

Ask God to give us wisdom and purity as we walk as simple children who look to Jesus for everything as we face both challenges and blessings.

Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.  

Aside

Lessons from a Camping Trip

I had the  privilege of primitive camping with my daughter on the old farm that I lived on as a girl.  We don’t own it, but the land owner is generous in letting us set up our tent and have a camp fire   Rachel and I would hike the hills and take lawn chairs to sit out in the middle of creek and eat watermelon that had been cooled in the cold spring that fed the creek.  At night we could hear the coyotes in the distance and the lowing of the cows that grazed in the field nearby.  It was a magical time and we played awesome Christian music loud enough that it echoed through the hills.  My favorite title on that album was “The Trees of the Field.”  I could see those old oak trees dancing along the banks and clapping their branches in joy.

One night, we had a beautiful camp fire and God began to speak to us an allegory of the fire.  It went something like this:

The Fellowship of the Fire of God.

When a fire is started it needs bits of paper (the Word) to get it going.  It needs the wind of the Holy Spirit to fan the flames into greater brightness and as it begins to burn steadily, it needs the dead wood (those who didn’t know the light) to be brought into fellowship with the embers to give it new life.  When embers are scattered, they slowly lose the fire.

The more brightly burning logs that try to go it alone don’t have a chance of staying on fire – but add other embers of dry wood and a little paper (Word) and it will leap into a fiery pillar that shines light all around.  The fire left on its own, with no one to tend it and keep the coals together and feeding it by adding paper and old wood, will eventually die out as it consumes itself.

Then Father God taught us another lesson.  Birth of the Cold Spring:

Another day, we followed the cold spring to its head waters and saw where it creeps out of the earth – living pure water that you can drink and enjoy.  We listened attentively to the sound of the water.  It hurried down the canyon to join yet another spring and fed into the creek.

We had set up our camp at the place where the cold spring and the creek join as one.  When you look at the water, you can no longer can you tell where one ends and the other begins but when you are in the water however, the spring is very cold and the creek water is much warmer, but in just a few feet, it is all mixed together and it is one.

I pondered these lessons and this is what came to me.

The absolute absence of man and his influence draws us closer to our Creator.  We are able to stop and be silent and hear the sounds of God’s creation.  The woodpecker taps out his morning song in search of food.  The mourning dove sings her mournful sound reminding us that the fish are biting.  The cold spring laughing as it falls over an old tree brings joy to the heart.  The locust, crickets and birds add to the symphony.  There is barely a whisper of wind and the beautiful peace encompasses and fills us with the love of God.

The last night we saw the stars dazzle us with their beauty as they shone upon us in their full radiance seldom seen in our light polluted world.  Oh, how vast and limitless are the wonders of God.  How pleasing are His ways.

The Back Row Guest

Nick hadn’t planned to be in a men’s recovery center ever again.  He had been clean for five years until three days ago.  For absolutely no reason, he went on a three-day bender.  The hang-over was familiar yet he knew that he wasn’t that person anymore and he didn’t want to go back This is how he found himself as a guest at the shelter.  They were having a speaker that was seeing people set free.

Nick’s father and grandfather were both pastors and his religious upbringing had been oppressive.  He knew that God had called him when he was twelve years old to be in the ministry.  The commitment and price his family paid daily caused him to run.  He started drinking shortly after he heard from God and never looked back.  He was forty-five and until five years ago, he seldom been sober.

Now, here he found himself sitting on the back row of the center and the speaker was saying things that made sense – things he had longed believed but never heard in church.  The man was talking about an encounter with God, not rules and doctrines.  He felt a fresh wave of the Spirit wash over him.  He leaned forward.  Everyone and everything around him fell away and he was totally engrossed in the message.

The speaker called for people to come forward for prayer.  He didn’t remember getting up and found himself almost gliding down the aisle.  The man-of-God turned to him and told him the truth he had been running away from.  “You have a call on your life and you have known it since you were very young.  It’s not too late.”  Then he laid his hands on his shoulders and the Presence of God was so strong that he found himself on the floor.  He had an encounter with the Holy Spirit and he was being renewed and refreshed.  He got up changed.

The evening meal was served to them and the founder of the shelter and the speaker were sitting at a table at the far end of the room.  They were engaged in conversation.  He hesitantly approached them and ask the guest speaker a question.  He was invited to join them and felt unworthy of the honor.  He was encouraged to do so and sat.  Several hours later, they rose up.  He recognized that he had been holding unforgiveness toward his family and he now released them.  Life would never be the same.

That night, he stopped at home.  His live-in girl-friend shouted at him, “What have you been doing?”  He became defensive.  “Nothing.”  She angrily replied, “You have been up to something!  You look so different.”  He knew then that he was forever changed.  He told her of his encounter with the Most High God.  She was skeptical, but could see the change.

Nick has moved into the shelter and is no longer a guest.  He is engaged in becoming the man God intended.

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