Monday, November 30, 2015

Waiting on the Lord

I hate to wait. I am hyperactive and waiting makes my blood pressure go up. I usually take my knitting everywhere; so I can make the time pass more productively and prevent my blood pressure from rising. 

I also attempt to start conversations with the potential friends sitting in the waiting room with me. I give them one of my business cards, which has the Romans' Road printed on the inside of the card, and I invite them to join me at church on Sunday.

However, waiting has some other benefits as well. Waiting on the Lord renews our strength and allows us to rise up and soar in the Spirit (Isaiah 40:31). While waiting, we will hear God's clear direction for each moment of our day.

Waiting on the Lord gives us time to function in the ministry of intercessory prayer for whomever God's Spirit brings to our mind. It also allows patience to do her perfect work in us (James 1:4-8).

Waiting gives us time to praise and worship our Father, either silently or out loud and either by singing or reciting scripture, which we memorized along the way.

Paul learned to wait the hard way. As an active minister of the Gospel, he rarely sat still. He worked as a tent maker, as a missionary and as an apostle in the far reaches of his known world.

Yet, he also had years at a time of inactivity. He learned to be content, to wait on the Lord, to pray and write, and to minister to anyone the Lord brought his way (Acts 20:27, 28:30).

Like Paul, as we wait, we learn to trust in God and to know Him as our personal Savior. We come to realize that He is our safe refuge in any oppression or trouble (Psalm 9:9-10).

Regardless of whether we live in peace or in turmoil, or in health or we die, God is in us and with us in this world and in the next. There is nothing to fear as we wait on the Lord.

Father God, as we wait on You, we feel Your loving kindness with us as we greet each new morning (Lamentations 3:23). We grow in courage and strength as we wait on You (Psalm 27:14). We learn to rest patiently for You and not to fret about injustice or to fear the future (Psalm 37:7).

You never forsake those who seek You (Hebrews 13:5). As Your Saints, we experience Your faithfulness first hand and can testify to anyone who will listen. We sing Your praises both night and day as our soul waits patiently for You, because our hope rests in You (Psalm 9:11, 33:20; 130:5).

Thought for the Day:
As our whole being waits patiently for the Lord, our expectations come from Him and we find hope in His Word and rest for our weary soul. - Psalm 62:5, 130:5

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Loved and Forgiven

When we actually come face to face with God's glory, we realize just how sinful we are. This encounter changes our very countenance, attitude, behavior, focus and prayer life (Exodus 34:35; 2 Corinthians 4:6; Ephesians 4:31-32).

We trust our life on earth to God's perfect plan for us (Ephesians 2:10). We find fulfillment, peace and joy through His love and forgiveness (Romans 14:17). We keep our eyes on Jesus, regardless of our circumstances (Hebrews 12:1-2; Philippians 3:9).

We never pay back evil with more evil, and we do things in such a way that everyone can see we are filled with the honor, grace and love of God (Romans 12:17). We no longer condemn others, because we realize that we are sinners too.

We think and act with mercy, grace and compassion. We also realize the magnitude of God's love for us, and we express His glory by allowing His love to flow through us to others.

The love of God is multi-dimensional with width, length, depth and height (Ephesians 3:17-19). It completely surrounds us in every way. There is no escaping the love of God.

We collapse into God's waiting arms with the confidence that He will catch us and never, ever let us go (Hebrews 13:5). He abides in our spirit and makes a huge difference in our life both now and throughout eternity (Romans 8:11).

God does miraculous works for and through those who love Him and obey His Word (Deuteronomy 28:1-13; Hebrews 11:6). Our inheritance in His Kingdom is full of His glory (Acts 20:32).

When we flee from temptation and please God, we increase in the grace and knowledge of all that the Lord means to us (2 Timothy 2:22-24; 2 Peter 3:18). He is miraculous, amazing, magnificent and incomprehensible in human terms. He is the great I AM (John 4:26; 6:20; 8:24, 28, 58; 13:19; 18:5).

Father God, You are our peace and Christ is our very life (Ephesians 2:14; Colossians 3:4). Thank You for Your eternal covenant with Your Saints through the crucified body and shed blood of Jesus Christ. You are the great Shepherd and we feel so secure as Your people and the sheep of Your pasture (Psalm 100:3).

You equip us with every good thing, which we need to walk in Your perfect, pre-planned will for our life (Ephesians 2:10, 13:21; Philippians 1:6). You work out of us anything which displeases You, until we are holy in Your sight through our Lord, Jesus Christ. We will glorify You forever and ever (Hebrews 13:20-21).

Thought for the Day:
God never disciplines from anger or vindictiveness, but with the purpose of drawing us back to His love and forgiveness. 

Saturday, November 28, 2015

The Glory of the Lord


Each person of the Trinity is unique, with a special function and purpose; yet, equal in divinity and power. The Father is the personification of the Deity, the Son is the manifestation and the Spirit is the inspiration.

God's Word describes Him manifesting His glory through thunder, lightning, loud trumpet blasts, angelic encounters, a cloud, flame of fire, dew, manna, and even a mighty rushing wind and other miracles (Exodus 16, 19:9, 16; 40:36, 38; Judges 6:37-38; 1 Kings 19:5-7; Acts 2:2, 12:7-11, John 5:1-15; Matthew 17:27).

Jesus is the radiance of God's glory (Hebrews 1:3). I am told that this Hebrew word for glory is "kabod", and literally means the tangible presence of the abundant riches, glory, splendor and honor of God.

Through Jesus, this multi-faceted glory abides within every authentic Believer (2 Corinthians 3:7-10). As we grow in our understanding of the reality of God's glory, it helps us to enter His rest as it heals our soul (Hebrews 4:10)

The glory of the Lord depends upon holiness in order to manifest, and is the only entity, which will truly quench our spiritual hunger and thirst and increases our intimacy with our God and Savior (Psalm 92:12-14).

When, like Moses, we cry out to see God's glory, He reveals to us His nature and character, personified in Jesus (Exodus 33:18, 34:6-7). Experiencing the glory of the Lord transforms our life into the precise image of His Son (2 Corinthians 3:18; Ephesians 1:17-18; Galatians 1:15-16).

We repent of our sinful lifestyle (Romans 1:16, 3:23, 6:23; Ephesians 2:4-5), we depend on God to change us from one level of holiness to the next,  and we draw nearer to God each moment of our day (Proverbs 3:5-6; 2 Corinthians 3:18).

Father God, Your Spirit brings us liberty from the presence, practice and power of sin through Your glory within us (2 Corinthians 3:17). As Your children, we are led by Your Spirit daily (Romans 8:14) and destined to future, eternal glory when we are like Jesus in every way (Romans 8:29-30).

We want our nature and countenance to reflect Your glory here on earth as well. Change us from the inside out, and make us clean so that we can be fitting vessels for Your glory (Matthew 23:25-26). We rest on your promises and look to You to create in us a clean heart and to fill us with Your divine nature (Psalm 51:10; 2 Peter 1:4).

Thought for the Day:
Experiencing the glory of the Lord causes us to get on our face before the Lord and to worship Him in spontaneous praise and humble thanksgiving throughout the day. - Exodus 34:8

Friday, November 27, 2015

Forgiveness is Our Most Powerful Weapon


The root of bitterness, which grows in our soul with each trauma we experience in life, causes trouble and defiles our life as well as many in our family, church and friendships (Hebrews 12:16).

However, once we are Born Again, we are able to commune with God through our spirit, which was originally dead is sin (Ephesians 2:1). We have the King of kings dwelling within us by His Spirit (Colossians 1:27).

The presence of the Trinity abiding in us helps us to forgive past hurts, and helps us to put our future hurts into proper perspective. Until we forgive our self and others, Satan gains the advantage over us (2 Corinthians 2:10-11).

If we refuse to forgive, we give Satan permission to control that part of our soul, and to inflict his demons on our body and spirit as well. Satan holds us captive as slaves to His lies through our thoughts and emotions.
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The fruit of the Holy Spirit cannot manifest in those areas of our soul, and we limit God's Spirit from using us according to God's will. Our human efforts, actions and self-righteousness gain us nothing. Once we forgive our self and others, all of this changes.

Although we continue to experience occasional oppression by the rulers, authorities, spiritual forces of evil and powers of darkness in this world, the blood of Jesus sets us free from the bondage of sin and death (Leviticus 17:11; Roman 8:2; Ephesians 6:12; Revelation 21:4).

Forgiveness is the most powerful weapon in our arsenal against Satan's influence in our life. It takes the offender off our hook and puts that person squarely on God's hook, where He promises to deal with that person in His way and timing (Romans 12:19).

Father God, please help us to break Satan's bondage over our life by giving us the strength to forgive our self and others. Thank You for the blood of Christ, which paves our way to a victorious life. As we humble our self to You and resist the devil, he has to flee from our midst (James 4:7).

Then allow us to help those in our life who need love, acceptance, healing and restoration in their relationship with You. We present our self to You as a living sacrifice to do Your will for each moment of our day (Romans 12:1; Ephesians 2:10). Inspire and guide us by Your Spirit today and always.

Thought for the Day:
In Christ we have redemption through His blood and forgiveness for all of our sins, because of the riches of His mercy and grace toward us. - Ephesians 1:7

Thursday, November 26, 2015

What About Sin?

People do not like to talk about sin. Satan shames us with remorse over our failings, making us feel like a failure for the wrong choices we made in the past. He heaps on condemnation, which cripples us and makes us feel unclean.

If we say we do not sin, we deceive our self (1 John 1:8). If we call our self a Christian, but continue to live in sin, we proclaim for the whole world to see that we do not have the Spirit of God in us (Romans 8:9; 1 John 1:6).

Other people relish their sin. They love the lusts of both the eye and the flesh. They rely on their pride in their life's accomplishments to boost their self-esteem and confidence (Ephesians 5:3; 1 John 2:16).

Some even brag about and take pride in their sin and encourage others to partake in it too (Romans 1:32). They reap no benefit from this behavior for which they are eventually ashamed and which leads only to eternal death (Romans 6:21).

Sin is only fun for a season. It turns destructive in a hurry and wraps its tentacles around us until we drown in its mire (Psalm 119:133). We reap the consequences of our sins for years and grieve the Holy Spirit and thwart God's blessings for our life.

Friendship with the world, and conformity to its sinful practices, makes us an enemy of God (James 4:4; Psalm 1:1). As sinners, we cannot inherit the Kingdom of God with Jesus (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

Jesus came to earth to take the sin of the whole world on His shoulders and to crucify it for all time through His bruised and bleeding body on the cross (1 Peter 2:24). So, if we humble our self and confess our sins to God, He is faithful and just to forgive us for them (1 John 1:9).

We all sin and miss the mark of God's perfection (James 4:8). Therefore, God freely justifies us by His grace through the redemption, which comes by Jesus Christ (Romans 3:23-24). God chooses those who are spiritual in His Body to help redeem a fallen Saint from the clutches of sin (Galatians 6:1; Matthew 18:15).

Father God, teach us to discern the sin in our own life before we go judging someone else's indiscretions (Matthew 7:3; 1 Peter 1:8). We give our self away when we try to hide our sin, because You always reveal the truth eventually (Luke 6:45; Numbers 32:23).

Enable us to overcome the sins relating to our earthly nature and to walk the straight and narrow road by Your Spirit (Psalm 25:6-7; Galatians 5:15-25; Colossians 3:5; Proverbs 10:9). Thank You both for Christ's sacrifice for us and for His second appearing to bring us Your complete salvation in body, soul and spirit (Hebrews 9:28).

Thought for the Day:
God orders our steps according to His Word to keep us from living under the rule of sin over our life. - Psalm 119:133