Making the extra-ordinary, ordinary!

A little while ago the realization hit me that I had a bad case of the Whiny’s and I am sure that I was sounding like a 3 year old who whined nonstop about something they wanted and did not have.

Why was I whining you may be wondering, well it started last August actually with a few statements from me. “Lord what do you have for me to put my hand to this coming season?” That seems innocent enough, but what happened next brought about a time in my life that I really don’t want to have to repeat any time soon.

Instead of seriously seeking the Lord for the answer to that question I jumped right in, I got involved in everything and then some. I never said no to anyone, as I was eager to be of good use to the Lord and to encourage and bless others with all of the gifts that the Lord has put inside of me.

Before long every day was filled with something or someone that I had to be involved with to some degree or another. Now this was not a bad thing, I just hadn’t figured out yet that all that I had gotten myself involved in was not necessarily what God wanted me to be doing.

I plugged away;  working hard, praying, reading my bible, visiting and encouraging people, writing, teaching two bible studies, not to mention having a family with their own set of needs and demands on my time and energy therefore as time went on I started to feel more and more exhausted moment by moment. I should have taken the hint when my doctor said that my health was declining and I needed to have a rest, but in my mind’s eye I couldn’t, I still was working for the Lord.

Then a strange thing started to happen, even though I had not stopped trying to spend time with the Lord daily, it was becoming a bit of a chore and I started to find reasons to do other things. I reasoned that I could always read my bible later, I still prayed when I thought of someone or something during the day, but I know longer was deriving any pleasure and insight and growth from spending time in the word of God, nor was I necessarily hearing anything from the Lord either.

I was falling apart, from the inside out. I was relying on myself and not on the Lord anymore to get me through the day, I was becoming snappy and miserable and I honestly felt like I had an elephant sitting on my chest.

As time went on, I started to feel more and more lost, like a little child standing on the platform of a busy train station, all by herself, unable to find her mother.

I was lost,

 I had been “working so hard for the Lord” that I had lost my first Love. I had lost the wonder and awe and appreciation of all that He had done for me. I had lost out on hearing His sweet voice when He spoke to me, because quite honestly, it was all a big chore now.

I found that when I went to spend time studying his word to get ready for a bible study that I was teaching, I didn’t even want to. The word that I had read a hundred times before no longer had any appeal to me.

This did not shock me at first, but as I asked my friends to pray for me, I started to realize that I was in trouble, something had gone horribly wrong. As I started to cry out to the Lord more and more He started to show me where my ship had gotten off course.

I needed to stop and get a clear perspective of the situation that I found myself in, and then I needed to decide what stayed on my plate and what did not. Oh let me tell you this was so hard to do, because if you stop one thing then you are letting these people down, if you stop that, then you are letting those people down.

I had allowed all of my “busy work” for the Lord rule me and it had gotten out of control. I was drowning in the sea of my own making and felt unable to see a way out. As a result I was overwhelmed and miserable.

I knew I had to trust the Lord and allow him to show me what things I could keep doing and what things I needed to lay aside for this time. There was no easy way, I had to do it.

The Lord graciously started to show me that way back in August when I had asked Him for his input into his plans for me for the fall season, that I did not completely wait on Him to show me what He truly wanted me to put my hand to, instead I had rushed off and assumed I knew what He wanted. I was also so focused on my assumptions that I did not necessarily stop long enough for him to tell me differently either.

I was wrong.

 God had wanted me to put my hand to one thing and that was to truly seek him with my whole heart, remain in awe and wonder of Him, walk in holy Reverence and fear of the Lord, and share that with the people around me.

Instead I traded the Extraordinary of God for the ordinary of my efforts.

 The result was rags, exhaustion, fear, frustration, tears and disappointment. I no longer felt that close relationship I had enjoyed with him before and I no longer heard what he was speaking to my heart, the revelations that I used to receive where a thing of the past as I did not stop long enough to receive them.

Thankfully the Lord does not allow our folly to consume us and he opened my eyes just recently to this phrase, “Brenda, you have traded my Extraordinary glory for your ordinary strength!”

When I realized it, I repented of my folly and slowly but surely I am starting to hear the Lord again. I am enjoying being in the word and it is with much excitement and anticipation that I go to my prayer room now, expecting to receive from the Lord the treasures He has for me.

I know that the Lord has many things that he has yet to teach me and to show me and grow in my character, but I have learnt that the minute the things of the Lord start to become boring and common to me then I need to Stop, Drop to my Knees and Repent.

God is anything but ordinary, he is a loyal friend and companion, He is my rock and strong tower when I feel weak and unable. He is my provider, my deliverer, my peace and comfort, He is my all.

 I can never hope to navigate through this life without Him leading, guiding and directing my steps. I need Him more than I realized and I am so glad that He promises that He will never leave nor forsake us, even when we run around like crazy people.

So my dear friends, if what I have written has struck a chord with you at all, I want to encourage you to stop and ask the Lord what His priorities for you truly are, ask Him what needs to be pruned from your life and what needs to stay, acknowledge that you have neglected the most important thing in a relationship with Him, and that is Him.

I know that if you do those things, He will meet you where you are at and He will reveal to you the truth about your heart and your situation. He loves you and desires to be in a loving, ongoing relationship with you.

Don’t be as foolish as I was and neglect him while busying yourself working for Him, He wants you to nurture the relationship with him above all and then all of the other things that you do, will come from that relationship.

Rekindle your first love for Christ today and allow your ordinary life to be transformed into the Extraordinary one that God has for you today.

                                                                                            

 

 

 

 

 

Going the Extra Mile

This morning while I was doing my devotions, I was reading in Deuteronomy 9 and I was really struck by a few things that I would like to share with you.

Deuteronomy  9:9- 14

When I went up on the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant that the LORD had made with you, I stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights; I ate no bread and drank no water.   The LORD gave me two stone tablets inscribed by the finger of God. On them were all the commandments the LORD proclaimed to you on the mountain out of the fire, on the day of the assembly.  At the end of the forty days and forty nights, the LORD gave me the two stone tablets, the tablets of the covenant.  Then the LORD told me, “Go down from here at once, because your people whom you brought out of Egypt have become corrupt. They have turned away quickly from what I commanded them and have made a cast idol for themselves.”   And the LORD said to me, “I have seen this people, and they are a stiff-necked people indeed! 

 “Let me alone, so that I may destroy them and blot out their name from under heaven. And I will make you into a nation stronger and more numerous than they.” 

Moses was speaking to the people just before they were to cross over to the Promised Land and was recalling with them their journey thus far. He had already told them that they were not to think to highly of themselves as they possessed the land as it was not because of their righteousness, but because the lord was going to destroy the people in the land, because of their wickedness. The lord considered them a “stiff necked people”

So what is so significant about the above portion of scripture? Well it struck me that when God was furious with the Israelites because they made the golden calf, He told Moses that he was to leave him alone so that he could destroy them, and make Moses into a great Nation instead.

Moses had a choice to make in his heart at that moment He could of agreed with the lord saying “ yes you are right lord they are a stiff necked people, deserving annihilation”  or He could beg for mercy for them.

He chose mercy!

The following scripture indicates what his next action was

Deuteronomy 9: 15-21

 So I turned and went down from the mountain while it was ablaze with fire. And the two tablets of the covenant were in my hands.  When I looked, I saw that you had sinned against the LORD your God; you had made for yourselves an idol cast in the shape of a calf. You had turned aside quickly from the way that the LORD had commanded you.  So I took the two tablets and threw them out of my hands, breaking them to pieces before your eyes. 

 Then once again I fell prostrate before the LORD for forty days and forty nights; I ate no bread and drank no water, because of all the sin you had committed, doing what was evil in the LORD’s sight and so provoking him to anger.   I feared the anger and wrath of the LORD, for he was angry enough with you to destroy you. But again the LORD listened to me. 

 And the LORD was angry enough with Aaron to destroy him, but at that time I prayed for Aaron too. 

 Also I took that sinful thing of yours, the calf you had made, and burned it in the fire. Then I crushed it and ground it to powder as fine as dust and threw the dust into a stream that flowed down the mountain. 

Instead of Agreeing to the plan of destruction, Moses who had not eaten in 40 days and nights, went back up the mountain and fasted and prayed for another 40 days and nights, (yes no food or drink for 80 days) for a people who probably did not care for him, as much as he cared for them.

I was pretty amazed at what Moses did, but I wandered what would motivate a person to truly sacrifice himself on behalf of others to the extent that Moses did?

The Lord then led me to Proverbs 2

Proverbs 2:1-11

 My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God. 

For the LORD gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.  He holds victory in store for the upright; he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for he guards the course of the just and protects the way of his faithful ones. 

 Then you will understand what is right and just and fair–every good path.  For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul.  Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you. 

A man or woman who is filled with the Spirit of the Living God, who is actively seeking out the wisdom and fear of the Lord, will know what is right and just and fair and every good path, as wisdom which is from God will enter his heart and be pleasant to his soul. Discretion will protect them and understanding of God, his heart and his ways will guard them.

This is why Moses was able to do what was right and just and fair before God on behalf of the people. God had broken the heart of Moses for his people a long time ago, he had filled him with a grace and mercy for them, which went beyond understanding and because he was filled with the Knowledge and fear of the lord he pleaded with God, for mercy for the people.

It made me realize that I need a heart like Moses, filled with the fear of the Lord, so that wisdom and knowledge and understanding from heaven will guide my steps, breaking my heart for what breaks God’s heart and giving me a heart of mercy to go the extra mile for the people God has called me to love and walk beside.

Praying for an extra 40 days, cost Moses, his body was weakened already from the lack of food, but he chose the path of righteousness and sought mercy for the people.

I desire to have a heart like that, instead of choosing my own comfort, I desire to go the extra mile in love and prayer and encouragement for those God has lovingly placed in my life.

I want to proclaim like Moses did in

Deuteronomy 32:3-4

I will proclaim the name of the LORD. Oh, praise the greatness of our God!   He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. 

Therefore, my prayer for all of us, as we head into this New Year, 2013, that we would be willing to cry out to God for a heart like Moses, who had mercy and compassion on a people who did not necessarily return his affection. I pray that we would be willing to go the extra mile in prayer, in love and mercy and compassion for them. I pray that God would give us the strength to die to ourselves, our agendas, and fight for our brothers and sisters in Christ. In Jesus Name, Amen.

 

 

 

Do not be wise in your own eyes

Pride; an affliction to some, a boost to others, where do you sit on this fence?

Over the past few weeks the lord has been highlighting the “stench of pride in his nostrils” to me, I know that sounds pretty dramatic, but it is the truth, God hates it when we are full of pride and think to highly of ourselves and our positions.

Now, we all have pride in us in various degrees and for various reasons. I believe that there is good and bad pride.

An example of good pride would be that you are pleased and proud of your child’s accomplishments. Or that you are proud that your team won their game. It is a happy, excited kind of pride that does not lead to sin.

The other pride unfortunately is what God Hates, what got the devil thrown out of heaven and what plagues mankind and has God fighting against us.

Yes it is that that bad.

God says in his word that Pride comes before a fall, that those who are prideful he opposes (fights against), that pride leads to destruction. These phrases are found all over the bible, but specifically in Proverbs.

God wants his children to be humble, to not think of themselves more highly than they ought to and to think of others about themselves. Proverbs talks extensively about this particular topic as it is obviously an important one to God.

Let’s have a look at what proverbs 3 says about pride

Do not be wise in your own Eyes

Proverbs 3:1-8

 My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity. 

Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.  Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man. 

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;   in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.  This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones. 

There was a man who has walked with the lord for a very long time and because of that, has a pretty good grounding of the things of the lord. In conversation, someone offered to help him with something but his attitude was one of “I am older, wiser and I know what I am doing, therefore I don’t need you to tell me what I should and should not do.” It was blatant and arrogant, but he did not care, he sauntered away, satisfied with himself and his attitude.

I am sure from studying the word of God, that that is not an attitude that pleases Him, on the contrary, the attitude of heart that God really requires is that we would walk humbly and with an attitude of reverence to the Lord..  King David cried out repeatedly that the lord would teach him to walk humbly and right with him, and God said of David that he was a man after his own heart.

Unfortunately this man’s attitude is not unique to him, I know that I have walked that same road myself until the lord got a hold of my stubborn heart and allowed me to see the destruction that it would lead to.  God says that when we become prideful, we are heading for destruction.

God wants us to learn to become dependent on him, to go to him when things are hard, good, bad, or whatever the case is, but when we arrogantly harden our hearts, we turn a deaf ear to any sound advice or instruction that God could give us about the situations that we face. He desires to lead us, not for us to struggle or even fight against him, but we cannot do that if we refuse to be taught by him.

If we are willing to be taught by him, he will show us in a variety of ways the correct answer to our problems. It might be through something that we read in the bible or it could be something that someone says, or a thought would come to us. We however are deaf to these things when we choose to walk in arrogance and pride.

I do not want to come across as full of judgment in regards to this topic on Pride, but I do realize that it is something that we all struggle with at one time or another, I do however want to warn you, not to let your heart become hard to the things of the Lord, so that you may walk humbly with Him all the days of your life.

My most consistent prayer forever has been, Lord please help me to remain teachable. I pray that it will become your rallying cry as well.

Here are a few verses that pertain to the topic of Pride and God’s view on it, I pray that as you read them, that they will penetrate your heart and set you on the path of freedom and humility.

Proverbs 8:13

 To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.

Proverbs 11:2

 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.

 Proverbs 13:10

Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.

Proverbs 16:18

 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.

Proverbs 17:6

 Children’s children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children.

Proverbs 21:24

 The proud and arrogant man–“Mocker” is his name; he behaves with overweening pride.

Proverbs 29:23

A man’s pride brings him low, but a man of lowly spirit gains honor.

Proverbs 15:21

 Folly delights a man who lacks judgment, but a man of understanding keeps a straight course. 

 Proverbs 15:22 Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.

Proverbs15:33

The fear of the LORD teaches a man wisdom, and humility comes before honor.

Proverbs 18:12

 Before his downfall a man’s heart is proud, but humility comes before honor.

Proverbs 22:4

 Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life.

As you can see from the above verses and in in Proverbs 3, God has no tolerance when we allow our pride to get in the way of our living a righteous life.

My prayer for us, is that we will chose to walk humbly with the lord, learning to become more and more dependent on him daily and choose to ask God for his wisdom, his way, his knowledge over trying to stubbornly insist that we know it all ourselves.

Remember there is always hope, even when we realize that we have messed up, and sinned against God, we can go to him and repent, turn from that way of thinking and learn to walk with him. It is never too late.

1John 1:8 – 10

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.   If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.   If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.

If these verses have struck a cord with you today, you can join me as I pray this simple pray to our heavenly father.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We come before you today, to ask that you would forgive us of the pride that rises up within us, and we realize that if we leave it unchecked it will lead to all kinds of disaster for us. Father we repent, help us now to turn from the attitudes of pride and help us to renew our minds to your truth about walking humbly with you. Thank you lord,

In Jesus Name

Amen

Prayer

Have you ever had a conversation with someone? I am sure that you have, you probably have had many conversations over your lifetime. Just this evening, I spoke to my husband and children, communicating with them and sharing my thoughts and needs.

Throughout the entire bible we see people crying out to God, some out of ritual, some out of desperation, some out of bitterness, and some on behalf of other people. God promises in his word that he would not only listen to their prayers, but that he would actively answer them.

Jeremiah 33:2-3

 “This is what the LORD says, he who made the earth, the LORD who formed it and established it–the LORD is his name:   ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’  

Jesus was asked by his disciples how to pray, this is what Jesus taught his disciples to do.

Matthew 6:5-15

   “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth; they have received their reward in full.   But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.   And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.   Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. 

“This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us today our daily bread.  Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.  

For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. 

Jesus told the disciples that they needed to be careful, not to be boastful in their prayer time; he did not want their prayer time to be a time to show off their “righteousness” but that they would instead be open and honest before him.

He encouraged the disciples to go somewhere quiet and there engage God in prayer. It is in that place that you can be real, open and honest with the lord, bearing your heart to him in all of its flaws hurts and trials.

King David gave us many examples in the Psalms of raw emotion before God, he shows that you can bring God your frustrations, hurt, anger, joy, triumph, despair, hopelessness, fear, depression, tears. The list of emotions that King David poured out over the Psalms is endless, but it went to prove, that he had a very real and open relationship with God, that is what he wants for all of us.

So, if you are not in the habit of talking to the lord, or even if you are, be sure to go to a place where you can be alone with the lord, and bring forth honestly all that is on your mind and heart.  I have found, that the more I do that, the more peace I feel, and the more I want to go back into that quiet place and set some time that it is just him and I.

Sometimes I will hear him speak to me, sometimes, it will be an impression that I feel in my spirit, and I know that it is God who is talking to me, sometimes, I will read something in the bible, and I will know without a shadow of a doubt that the lord wanted me to see that verse, as it lined up with my prayers.

It is a wonderful thing, to pray to the lord, and see how he answers you!

Then Jesus told the disciples, first acknowledge that God is your father in heaven, and give him the praise that his due his name, “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name” God is holy and we need to remember that when we come into his throne room of grace.

Then he told his disciples, to ask that the kingdom of heaven, and all that is good about it, come to us here on this earth, and to pray that the will of God be done on earth, as well as it is in heaven; “ your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” Why would it be important that God’s will be done on earth, I cannot even begin to explain the great importance of God’s will to be in our lives. But I do say that I know no better place to live out your life, than in the perfect will of God. Therefore praying that his will is done in your life is essential, to living your life on purpose for God.

The next principle that Jesus taught the disciples in this prayer is this; “Give us today our daily bread”    in other words, lord, please provide for our daily needs, the lord promised that he would do just that, as we are valuable to him and he loves us.  I have seen the lord provide in miraculous ways over the years for my little family, as well as for others, I know that he cares about the little details of our lives and wants to make sure that we are taken care of.

He then told his disciples, to ask for forgiveness and to extend forgiveness to other people.” Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.”  God is adamant that we do not hold grudges against people, that we release them and walk in love. I believe that the reason that this is so important is that when we don’t forgive an offense, we end up, bitter, full of hatred, mistrustful and downright miserable. God says that if we choose not to forgive others, then he will not forgive us our sins. I don’t know about you, but I love the freedom that comes with not having to have my sin hang over my head like a death sentence. In Christ I have been forgiven and set free from that sin, therefore because it has been given to me, I am obligated to extend forgiveness to others.

The next principle that Jesus taught was; “And leads us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”  To be able to ask the lord, not to be led into anything that would cause us to sin against him is amazing. That he would deliberately take us on a different route that would allow us to steer clear of temptation is awe inspiring to me. Lord, deliver us from the evil that surrounds us daily.

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ, I want you to realize that prayer is not a scary thing, nor is it something that we need to neglect. The bible is clear that we are to pray for one another, that we are to pray for God to send people into the field to bring in the harvest of souls. We are to pray that God would provide for our needs, deliver us from evil that surrounds us, and that he will help us to not willfully sin against him.

We can pray for increased passion to worship him, for him to increase our faith, for him to help us to choose righteousness over evil and for us to keep our eyes firmly on him.

Whether you choose to take a walk to pray, or write in a journal or go to a secluded place, the lord is always ready and waiting to hear from you, to lead you with his word, and to bring joy and peace into the depths of your spirit.

Cry out to him today, and if you feel intimidated start reading the book of Psalms to see how King David ran to God for everything and see how God delivered him.

My favorite prayer Psalm is,

Psalm  84:1-12

How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty!  My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.  Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young–a place near your altar, O LORD Almighty, my King and my God.  Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you. Selah,

 Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.  As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools.  They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion. Hear my prayer, O LORD God Almighty; listen to me, O God of Jacob. Selah,  Look upon our shield, O God; look with favor on your anointed one. 

Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.  For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.   O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you

Take a moment right now and turn this Psalm into a prayer before our Heavenly father.

 

 

 

The Privilege of never being alone

Do you sometimes feel that you are all alone, that there is no one in the world that cares about you, or if you would suddenly die one day, there would be no one to mourn your death?

I remember feeling like that, even though my life was full of people, I often felt very alone. Trapped in my own little world of pain and suffering and not really able to communicate to people what I really thought or felt.

I would get mad when I would have coffee with a friend, and not once would they ask me how I was doing, or what was going on in my life, it was all about them and how they were and what they were feeling. It was exhausting and I hated the fact that there was not a soul around who really knew the intimate me.

Who I really was, what I liked, why I cried for this or that, what I liked, what I remembered and what was precious to me, seemed just my burden to carry, because no one around me truly cared, I mean truly cared to really get to know who I was.

That was until one day, I realized that I was not as alone as I had thought I was, the bible teaches us, that when Jesus was about to be crucified, he told his disciples that he would not leave them alone in this world like orphans, but that he would send his Holy Spirit as a comforter and a teacher, and he would bring them and all future believers into fellowship with God the father.

John 14:16-18

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever- the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.  I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you

So as a believer in Jesus Christ, I have the assurance that the Holy Spirit will come and take up residence within my heart forever. I am therefore never alone and I am always connected to God my father, through the Holy Spirit.

The bible also tells us that there is not a place on this earth that we can go and hide from God.

Psalm  139:1-18

 For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.

 O LORD, you have searched me and you know me.  You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.  You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.   Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.   You hem me in–behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.  Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.   Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?   If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 

If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.  If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.  For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.   How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!  Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you. 

The realization that God knows every intimate detail of my life is amazing, I no longer felt that I was alone in the world, with no one to care that I had had good and bad experiences and that I would one day die.

I felt so loved and appreciated, and I realized that people do not need to know all of the intimate details of my life, just as long as my heavenly father does, he still cheers me on, he even loves me, in spite of knowing the bad things I have ever done, as well as the good things.

I am intimately known by the creator of the universe. I praise the lord for that!

So my dear friend, if you are thinking to yourself “that is good for you, I am still lonely”

I have good news for you, all you need to do, is to believe believe in your heart and confess with your mouth that Jesus is lord, and is sent from God, and he is God’s son, then the bible promises that you will be given the gift of eternal life.

When we do that, the Holy Spirit, comes and lives in your heart (Spirit) immediately, and forever. You will never ever be alone again, you will have a constant friend and companion who will lead and guide you.

It was the best decision that I ever made, I pray that you too would take that step of faith today and come to Jesus so that he will become your most intimate friend and confidante.

Romans 10:9-11

 That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.  As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” 

Take the step of faith today, and you will never have another lonely moment ever again.

The real reason that we work

On Sunday I was talking to a very good friend of mine and we were talking about the various things that the lord had been teaching each of us, and how those things had impacted our lives for the good. One of the things that we had spoken about was our general attitude towards tasks that we had to personally do.

Now, it was not long ago that I would mutter under my breath about having to “do this or that” and bemoan and begrudge the whole thing. All the while thinking to myself how unfair it was that I had to do it, and didn’t my family see the load that I was already carrying, and didn’t they understand how hard my life was, and on and on.

I know, I sound like a two year old, but much to my shame I thought that way, often going out of my way to leave things for others to do. I even stopped baking for the family because I did not like how the baked goods would disappear so quickly.

Ah yes, the selfishness of my heart!

Well, as you can imagine, I could see this particular fault in everyone else but myself, it would annoy me to no end when my kids would only do a half job of what I had asked them to do. I would watch them wait for the other person when it came time to do the dishes, just in case they ended up having to do more of the task than the other person.

I would try to discipline and teach them, when these things happened, but alas, it went nowhere; that is of course until the lord started showing me, what was dwelling deep down in my own heart.

Ah! That is all I have to say, it hurts to see that what you have been trying to correct in another person, you yourself are doing.

Matthew 7:1-5

Judging Others

  “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?

How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

Yes I was being a hypocrite; I was delighting to see what was wrong with everyone around me but myself.

Thankfully God, in his great love and mercy, will not leave us in that state of heart, and he set about changing my heart. At first I did not recognize what he was doing, until later I realized that I had indeed had a change of heart, and this time my change of heart lined up with what the bible taught as a correct behavior and attitude to have in connection to work.

Ephesians 6:5-9

Slaves and Masters

“  Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free. And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with him.”

The bible teaches us, that we need to work, and serve others wholeheartedly as if whatever you are doing, you are doing for the Lord.

Now, you would think that I would have known this many years ago, I did, and I even taught it to others, but I did not always apply it to my own life. Father forgive me!

Thankfully, the lord, has been doing a new work on my heart and has been showing me, where my attitude has been wrong, and where I need to choose to serve instead of demand that I be served.

After I had spoken to my friend, I read a devotion out of the Daily Bread, written by Bill Crowder, and it was written on this exact topic. I knew then that the lord was highlighting this to me once again, and I needed to share it with you.

Bill Crowder wrote:

In the Late 1660s, Sir Christopher Wren was commissioned to re-design St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. According to legend, one day he visited the construction site of this great edifice and was unrecognized by the workers. Wren walked about the site, asking several of the men what they were doing.

One worker replied, “I am cutting a piece of stone.”  A second worker responded, “I am earning five shillings two pence a day.” A third, however, had a different perspective: “I am helping Christopher Wren build a magnificent cathedral to the glory of God.” What a contrast in the attitude and motivation of that worker!

If we do our work merely to earn a paycheck or satisfy a supervisor, we will fall short of the higher motivation – doing our best as evidence of our devotion to God.

It was after reading this that the lord confirmed to me the heart change had been taking place inside of me, I had gone from being selfish and self-absorbed in all of my tasks, to taking great joy and having great satisfaction completing tasks set before me, because I did them out of devotion to God.

I have found that now I have more peace about the tasks that I put my hand to, I even experience a new found joy, because I know that even if I am cleaning toilets or sweeping my kitchen for the tenth time that day, I do it all out of a devotion for God.

Let me tell you of the change that has taken place in my household, because of my change of attitude. My children have seen that I don’t begrudge helping and serving them, and they are in turn are learning to work with the same attitude as the lord has helped me to learn.

Please understand, that this attitude has not made me the servant of the household, my children still have tasks that they are required to do, but it has taught us all, that we can have a joy in both the mundane and the bigger tasks that God sets before us to do.

Remember, no matter who signs your paychecks, you are ultimately working for God!

 

 

Trading Independence for Dependence

I have been trained from early childhood to become an independent person, I can dress myself, feed myself, drive a vehicle, cook, clean, shop and think for myself, and I find it hard when I have to rely on others to help me when I could just do it myself.

I find it even harder to have to wait for someone to do something for me, it actually drives me batty, and especially if I know that I can just as easily do it myself.

As a Christian, the bible teaches us that we need to get to a place where we completely trust Jesus Christ to work on our behalf.

Proverbs 3:5-7

 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.  This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones. 

The lord promises that when we lean on him and not on our own understanding for a situation that he will make our path straight, in other words he will show us the way. Often times though the answers don’t come as quickly as I would like them to.

I have been thinking about this whole concept of what it means to be truly dependent on the Lord and allowing him to work through our lives in spite of our weaknesses and I have come to realize that often times our weaknesses are often blessings in disguise as they make us more and more dependent on Him for everything.

For me personally I know that one of my greatest weakness is my independent streak, as I have a tendency to run off and forget to ask the Lord to direct my steps, I forget to ask him which is the best way and I forget to allow him full reign in what he is trying to do in my life.

But over time the lord is showing me that although it is good to be self-sufficient in some areas of my life, if I will surrender my will to his, he will always show me the best way to handle every situation I find myself in.

I have come to that place in my life where I want his will for my life, more than I want to fight and be fiercely independent, so therefore I am willing to allow this independence within me to be nailed to him so that I will always choose to surrender to him and allow him to work in my life, before I go running off willy nilly.

I have come to realize through this journey that Christ is the very air I breathe and the wisdom that I need as well as he is the Power that I need to propel me forward.

Therefore, the weakness that I find within myself, whether it is physical or emotional, presents a perfect opportunity for God to display his power through my life. I have looked at this independence sometimes as a curse, especially when I know that God wants me to trust him, and yet I trust myself more than him, but I am learning, that if I will let God have that area of my life he will be made strong in my weakness.

He will show me the better way, he will lead me where it is good for me, he will open doors for me that I would otherwise would have stood in front of and banged on. He will work through me to bring life to others around me.

You see the reason that this is important is because as Christians it is sometimes easy to get into a groove of independence and doing life our own way, and then dependence on God becomes harder for us to do.

I am not sure about you, if you fight this same battle as I do, but I do know this, that God rewards us for being willing to lay aside all our weaknesses and allow him to show himself strong to us, and the world around us in the process.

We have a great example of that, right now, in the world that we live in; we have the East and the West.

The West, has had it easy, we have had riches, technology, food, freedom to practice whatever religion we want without any serious repercussions.

The East on the other hand, has had lack, persecution, poverty, corrupt governments and no religious freedom.

Which part of the body do you think is doing better spiritually, I would love to say the rich West but that would be a lie. The truth is, because of all the conveniences and the independence, and self-reliance in the West, the church has forgotten what it says in Proverbs 3, that we are to lean not on our own understanding, but on the understanding of God instead.

The East on the other hand has had no choice but to learn trust God for their basic needs as well as survival. They are thriving, even though it is done in secret.

If you find yourself in a place of fierce independence where you do your own thing, and rely on your own strength and finances and wisdom, you will find yourself eventually in a place of barrenness and far from God, but if you humble yourself before him, and ask him to lead you, to teach you his ways, and to fill your heart with a desire to be surrendered to him, you will live a life that is so rich, and filled with adventure that you will never want to go back to the old way again.

This example might not be your particular weakness that you struggle with in your life, and you might view the weakness in your life as a curse, you might stutter, or be incredibly shy or you might be incredibly fearful.

Whatever that weakness is that stops you from living an abundant life in God, I want to encourage you to ask the lord for him to be made strong in that weakness, for him to speak through you when you are called upon, or to give you courage when you are afraid or boldness to do something you never dreamt of doing. The lord loves you with a deep and everlasting love, he wants to empower and strengthen you to fulfill the plans and purposes that he has for you. He will not reject you when you call out to him, but instead he will come and show himself to you in ways that you never dreamed of.

Sometimes what we see as a curse or an annoyance could actually be a gift from God, through which he will bring blessings and fullfillment to your life. Ask the lord to show you if what you see as a weakness or even what you are gowing through right now, is to be prayed away or are you to take it as a gift to be used for his glory.

So my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, admit your weaknesses to the lord, and allow him to be made strong in them, and then allow him to work through those weaknesses to impact the world around you.

I pray that the lord will bless you as you seek him out

Ephesians 3:14 – 21

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name.  I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.   Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. 

 

 

Rejoicing in the Lord Always

I am really excited to share with you today a truth that is starting to settle in my spirit. That truth is that we as children of God should delight ourselves in the Lord Jesus Christ always.

No matter what the circumstances are that we find ourselves in, we can still take delight in the lord. So how is that possible when the storm is raging higher than what we can comfortably stand in?

It is possible because delighting ourselves in the lord is not a once off thing, but a continuous appreciation for all that he has done in and for and through us.

For instance, when I was younger I had a very low self-image and as a result had a very negative outlook on life, I wanted to be different but did not know how. It was not until I had invited the lord Jesus Christ into my life that He started to change my outlook and my self-image.

I can tell you first hand that because I know from where I have come, I can delight in the lord wholeheartedly because I know longer look through the wrong glasses.

God taught me, that because of Christ, I had been given a new identity,

2Corinthians 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

God also taught me that because of his great love for me and all of mankind that he has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly realms, and that he has chosen us before the creation of the world to be Holy and Blameless in his sight. That means that even though I sinned enough for 10 people God says that I am Holy and Blameless, when I accept Jesus as my lord and Savior. In this I can delight in the Lord.

He also predestined us to be adopted as his sons and daughters through Jesus Christ, (this is most definitely something to delight in) and we have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus when died on the cross. Another thing to delight in is that our sins have been forgiven, and will not be held against us, oh what glorious joy and freedom and delight that should bring to our souls.

Another reason to rejoice in God is that he made know to the world that he would be sending a savior that would set people free from their destructive lives and from the sin that so easily entangled them. God has chosen us, and predestined us to be his precious and beloved children, as we are a part of his wonderful plan for all mankind. Your life is part of something way bigger than you can ever dream or imagine.

Brothers and sisters we were created and chosen to be for the praise of the Glory of God. That all of mankind will see and know that there is a God, who loves the world and is passionate for the people who live here.  This I believe is another great reason to take great delight in the Lord God, He loves us, and everything that he does, and he does it with the motivation of his great love for the people.

To be honest I think one of the most precious verses that are in the bible have to do with the fact that because of our belief in Jesus Christ as our lord and savior we have been given the Holy Spirit and  we are sealed in him.

Sealed, completely air tight, nothing gets in and nothing gets out.  I delight in the fact that nothing in all of creation will ever be able to break that seal. I belong to God and because I do, I can take great delight in him. The best part is that I have an eternal inheritance that is waiting for me one day when I get to heaven. This too makes me extremely excited to delight in the lord. I praise him that he has given me all of these things before I even knew that he existed.

Ephesians  1:3 – 14

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.  For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will– to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.  In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.   And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment–to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.  

In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,  in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.   And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession–to the praise of his glory. 

Therefore, I can say to you today that it is good for us to rejoice and take delight in all that the lord has given to us. With a grateful heart we can thank the lord for his great love towards us.

Philippians 4:4

 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 

If you are a believer in Jesus Christ, and are tempted to see the world through dark colored glasses, I want to encourage you to remember the blessings that the lord has given to you, and determine in your mind and heart to think on things that will bring life to your situation and not death.

 Philippians 4:8

 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things. 

I realize that sometimes life and it’s circumstances can leaving you wandering how on earth will you survive, but I have come to understand that taking delight in the lord always, regardless of our circumstances and praising him for all that he has done for us already and all that he has promised to us, bring about a deep peace and joy within our spirits.

Therefore, I would like to encourage you to assess your situation and see how you can take steps to rejoice and delight in the lord today and from this day forward, being thankful and grateful for all that he has done for us, all that he has given to us, and all that he promises us for the future.

My prayer for you today is this:

Ephesians 1:16 – 23

 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.  I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.

  I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,  and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength,   which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.  And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. 

 

Independence and Rebellion, are they twins?

I have been thinking about the above statement recently due to recognizing this not only within myself, but also within my own children.

When my kids were little I basically got to control their lives, I told them when they had to sleep, eat, get up, change their clothing and everything else in between. At that age it was acceptable for me to do that, in order to teach them boundaries and proper skills to navigate in the world around them.

I felt a sense of wellbeing when my kids behaved appropriately, and when I did not have to apologize for them being on this earth, or that I had given birth to them!

As they got older, I let out the “leash” a bit, and allowed them more and more freedom to explore the world around them, but not too much freedom as I did not believe that it would be too good for them. They thrived under that system and slowly grew up into wonderful teenagers who knew the boundaries, and comfortably lived within them.

I have noticed though, that within each of us is this underlying rebellion and desire to do things our own way, in our own time, and no matter the good advice that is given we continue to do it our way, regardless of the consequences.

That is where the theory of Independence and Rebellion comes in.

My children are reaching the age where they will soon be leaving the nest, and so I have seen more and more of the “independence” starting to rise up within them.

Please do not get me wrong, I want them to grow up and leave the nest and start their own lives, but I want them to do it wisely.

That is why I think that the lines may have gotten a bit crossed for them, as I see them wanting to sprout their own wings, but it has come with an element of rebellion attached to it. I am convinced that at this time, they are unclear that what they believe is their “independence” is actually rebellion rising up within them.

It has come with a, “I am old enough now, and you cannot tell me what to do anymore, and even if you do tell me what to do, I won’t listen as I want to forge my own way.” Even if the advice given is for their good it does not matter, they will choose to do it their own way.

This is a bit disconcerting for me as a mother, as I have tried to teach them to be wise, and to choose wisdom, over “I know what I am doing thank you very much!”

Independence is a good thing, and I want my children to be independent and be good citizens but I think sometimes the line between wanting that independence so badly causes a shift towards the rebellion.

I have come to realize though, that my desire for them is that they will not choose rebellion over wisdom. Thinking that their rebellion will make them free, when all it really does is sets them up for further rebellion and the hardening of their hearts.

I realize that as adults we are no different, we think that our independent streak “Doing things my way, by myself and you cannot tell me any different”  is actually working to our benefit, when in fact it is detrimental to us as it leads to bondage and a hard heart.

God desires that we find our independence in him, and that independence actually takes on a whole new look, it is a look of dependence. Surrendering to God and allowing him to teach us the best way to live our lives while we are on this earth.

Job 22:21

 “Submit to God and be at peace with him; in this way prosperity will come to you.”

Proverbs 1:7

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline. 

Dependence on God teaches us, that choosing righteousness is far better than evil and rebellion, because it leads to a life of peaceable living.

Choosing dependence on God will teach us his wisdom, and it does not include us sticking out our tongues saying that we can do it better, but it does show us, that hardening of our hearts will have long term consequences. It does reveal that if we want to live well, then we need to ask God for help and direction.

Wisdom says that drinking too much alcohol will bring you to ruin and if you lie and cheat and steal you will not only face the wrath of people here on this earth, but that God will have to discipline you. Wisdom says it is wiser to not fight and quarrel than it is to go into a situation with both fists swinging; wisdom says that in order for you to maintain a good standard of living, you should work hard and not be lazy.

So I have come to the conclusion that it is easy to mistake being rebellious with independence, as we all have that desire to be free and to live our lives the way we see fit, but I have to admit that I have found more freedom in living my life being dependent on God, than I ever did when I was trying to sail my own boat.

I believe that the way out of this rebellion and into a place of true freedom and dependence upon God, is for us, as believers in Christ Jesus, to first of all repent for the rebellion, then take definitive steps of guarding your heart. The bible teaches us that it is very important to do this as it teaches us that the heart is the center of all that you do, and choose.

Proverbs 4:23

 Watch over your heart with all diligence, For from it flow the springs of life. 

My prayer for my children is that they will learn that true freedom comes from dependence on God and does not lie in rebellion.

My prayer for you is that if you have found yourself in a place where rebellion comes more natural to you than dependence does, that you will take a moment and ask the Lord to forgive you.

Remember always, God who has made us and knows our future, knows what is the very best for us; he has plans for our lives that will bring about great satisfaction for us, and glory for Him.

Why not try today to lay aside the rebellion of self, and ask the lord to help you walk into the freedom of dependence on him.

 

 

Having a Yes heart

The world is filled with many very talented people. Some use their talents for the good of mankind, others may use them for selfish reasons and some actually bury theirs and never really live lives that are fulfilling or even satisfying.

I used to hide my talents all of the time, fear kept me from pulling them out and dusting them off and using them. It was debilitating for a long time, but then the lord started to work on my heart and helped me to change my mind.

He showed me in scripture that I had been given a task to do on this earth and that to run and hide would never give me any satisfaction.

Ephesians 2: 10

For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. 

Therefore armed with this verse I realized that I was not here on this earth just to put in time, but had been given by God a task to do while I was here.

I discovered that the bible taught that some people were gifted by God to become pastors, who would take care of his children. There were responsible to feed the people the word of God and to pray for them, and literally lay down their lives for the people if necessary. They were also responsible to God for their conduct and how they shepherded his flock. The shepherd would never let anything come near the sheep that would harm them. The same is true for a Pastor, he/she needs to be so intimate with God, that he/she guards the flock and would rather die than have anything come near the sheep that would harm them.

Other people have been called to be an evangelist. They go throughout the world and their neighborhoods and share the good news of the gospel with all of the people. These are an important part of the body of Christ, for without them, the pastors and teachers would have none to teacher and care for.

The lord knew that some people would need to be administratively savvy in order to help the pastors, teachers and evangelists deal with all the little details of life, (paper work) so that they could concentrate on the gifting that God had called them to walk in.

 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.

These gifts that were given to the people were given for the benefit of the whole body of Christ.

So I thought, phew! I am off the hook as I am not a pastor, evangelist and I hate administration. Slowly though the lord helped me to see, that everyone of us in the body are called to minister to those around us. We might not be heading up a big church but we can love our neighbors, care for our families. We can show kindness and compassion to those who need it; we can also allow the Holy Spirit to enable us to do the work that God has called us to do.

Every believer has been given the Holy Spirit when we accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior. Therefore the Holy Spirit comes to the table with gifts and abilities and power that we don’t have naturally. Like true love, compassion, kindness, long suffering, joy, faithfulness to God and His way for our life. . Galatians 5:22

The big question is; how willing are we to use our gifts, talents and natural abilities for the Glory of God? I was not willing to do so for a long time, as I did not realize that Jesus was actually trustworthy with my life.

What do I mean by that? I believed that if I said yes to the lord, then he would send me to a place so far away from all that I knew and loved. That I would have to contend with big spiders and other creeping things and that my life would be miserable.

I did not really know and understand God or his love and plan for my life. God desires that we come to him freely and say, yes lord, not my will but yours be done. He will not use us against our will and he is not mean and nasty requiring things of us, that he would not be willing to do himself.

Yes there are Christians in this world right now who are going through some really horrific things because they are Christians, but they gladly endure it, because they love the lord and they know that His love for them is greater than what they could ever lose in this life.

Therefore on this road to discover the gifts and talents God had placed in my life, I learnt something, it was written in an old book called:

Hearing heart, by author Hannah Hurnard.

She said “We need to know that it is safe to Trust God and that no matter how we are, He can do wonders in and through us.

As God reveals his special gifts in you, be sure to take the time and consecrate it to him. Hand him the gift and say with a humble heart –

Lord, I promise to never say no to you, when you call on me to use my gift that you gave me. Use me lord to reflect you in every way.

Amen.”

My hope and prayer for you today is that you too will realize that God has given you gifts and talents to use to make this world a better place and if you are willing to give those gifts back to him, and allow him to work through you, you will not only have a very fulfilling life but you will have a deep joy and satisfaction that comes only from doing exactly what God prepared in advance for you to do.