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It Was Necessary

Over the last few days I happened to have had conversations about things from my past and in each conversation I found myself expressing that I am in a much different and much better place today. And that I am a much better person because of what I went through back then. The only reason I look back at my past is to remind myself of how God changed my life and how far I have come. I realize that life without Christ right now could be very different for me.

When satan KNOWS who you are in Christ it is in his very existence to destroy you because the power that God has placed in us will defeat the adversary every time. The key to defeating him though is to know who’s we are and WHO we are in Christ. I will admit that I needed help in finding out both of those things and at times I take my eyes off of God and look straight at my issues and forget who I belong to and Who I am But John 14:16 says to ask the Father and He will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever.

God will never leave you or forsake you. He is always there and his Holy Spirit, the LIFE that sits on the right hand of the throne forever making intercession on your behalf, walks with you even when you don’t feel him there. He carries you when you are to weak to carry on. He strengthen you in your wounded and weakened state. He equips you when you think that you are unprepared to face the trials and tribulations of the day.

Now look back and see that everything you have gone through has made you who you are today. And you are still here today because you are reading this message. All that you go through God already knew you would face and it was necessary to mold you into who he created you to be. I never would have believed that a day would come that I would say I would go through every trial, every storm, every hurt, heartbreak and every pain all over again to get to where I am today. But yes….I would. My end which has yet to come will be greater than my former. Why because the word says so in Haggai 2:9.

The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the Lord of hosts:… Click To Tweet

In the words of Dennis Reed & Gap, “I am who I am today because God used my mistakes. He worked them for my good like no one else ever could. Why? It was necessary.”

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Speak of My Saviour

Shortly before his death, Carey said to a friend: “You have been saying much about Dr. Carey and his work. When I am gone, say nothing about Dr. Carey; speak about Dr. Carey’s Saviour.” – William Carey

What will they say about me when my time on this earth is gone. This is the thought that plagues me often in my walk with Christ. Will I have lived a life representative of Christ which will leave people speaking of my great Saviour or will there be whispers of my flaws and short comings? Truth is there may be a bit of both but my hope is that I will have lived, done or said something that will ultimately leave others speaking about the Saviour that I have loved and served.

In speaking I have learned that my experiences in this life are not about me. They are about learning in order to gain wisdom, growing in faith and giving back to someone in need. I have heard many times how can you relate to someone if you haven’t gone through what they are going through. The greatest example of that is when Jesus came in the form of flesh, suffered at the hands of men, and was hung on the cross for our (yours and mine) sins, failures, flaws and shortcomings.

For we do not have a High Priest who is unable to sympathize and understand our weaknesses and temptations, but One who has been tempted [knowing exactly how it feels to be human] in every respect as we are, yet without [committing any] sin. Hebrews 4:15 (AMP)

I believe in order to give with the right motive, compassion plays such a huge part. When I say give I don’t mean just monetary or materialistically, I mean giving back by praying for and with someone, helping to carry the burden of our brother/sister in Christ, fighting a spiritual war on behalf of a lost soul in order to draw them to Jesus, interceding for those we don’t even know, and loving them that spitefully use us. If we can do these things just as Jesus has done them and much more for us, and all in the name and strength of our Saviour, how then will others speak about us (you and me).

I pray that when they speak about me, they will say…There is one whom she loved an served, and He caused her to love others. He in turn showed us His love through her. And others will ask who is this one that you speak of. The answer: His name is Jesus. And what he has done for her, he has done for others and will do for you.

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Where Do I Turn

Psalms 34:4 I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.

This Psalm was written by David after he had escaped King Achish by pretending to be insane. In it he tells how God had remained faithful to him during his time of troubles. I want to tell you about how I relate to his psalm and how God was yet faithful to me.

At one point in my life I was deep in the midst of sickness and heartache. I had no place else to turn. My friends couldn’t help me, my parents and children couldn’t help me. The doctors repeatedly told me that I would have to live with the abscesses that, had literally taken over my body, for the rest of my life. There was no cure all they could do was cut me over and over and over some more. My marriage was in shambles, I was buried in debt over my head and I had a J.U.B. (job), Just Under Broke. I saw no light at the end of the tunnel. Something had to give.

My thoughts were that I needed some type of relief. Either end this horrific pain and put me out of my misery or save me. I had grown up in church so I knew a little something about God. I wanted to commit suicide but I knew better and if nothing else in this world scared me, knowing that if I took my own life it was a one way ticket to hell, kept me from swallowing the massive amount of pain pills I had. I had no where to turn and hope was a fading memory.

I can’t remember asking God for much of anything during my time of “I’m grown and will do whatever I want” stage in life. I may have slipped in very few prayers. But I remembered my younger days and the times that I loved God enough to want to be baptized. I felt something for Him back then, could He be my last hope. So I gave it a go. I prayed and asked God to save me from the despair, the pain, the heartache and the troubles.

God delivers those who persevere in their faith. - From Facing Your Giants by Max Lucado Click To Tweet

I turned to him when there was nothing else I could do. I was a mess, I mean a wretch undone. Romans 7:24 (AMP) Wretched and miserable man that I am! Who will [rescue me and] set me free from this body of death [this corrupt, mortal existence]?

But Jesus heard my cry and he saved me and delivered me from the mess that I was in. The mess that I had made of and for myself. It wasn’t immediate. And it has taken years to get to where I am now. Oh but he did and he changed my life. I still am not perfect but I am not nearly what I used to be. I surely thank God for that!

When faced with circumstances beyond our control, where do we turn? If you haven’t figured it out, the best place is to turn to the Lord.

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Growth in Christian Virtue

Growth in Christian Virtue Post

If there is ever a time when I could say that I have grown in Christ, I would hope that it was now. But as I read these word better yet instructions today, the words seemed to come alive from the screen and renewed my mind in what I know to be faith, wisdom, revelation and understanding. God’s word truly is a mirror and will cause you to see yourself for who and what you really are. (I am talking to myself right now) It will reveal all of the truth in finding out you are not all that you think you are. But you need more work done on the inward parts. Your heart need more fixing, more mending, molding and still yet a complete transformation into the things of Christ.

As I read this passage of scripture this morning, I felt chastised by the word of God for doing far less than what it calls for me to be. I realized I have not been doing all that I know to do. We can be well but can always do better. I am guilty of knowing I should do better. As I sat down and asked God for a word of encouragement for His people today, I was convicted because I should have done more than I have done over the last week. I should have read more, prayed more and loved others more than I did. I repented because I realized that I cannot say that I love God and not do all and then some more of what He has called me to do. I may not be out intentionally sinning but I fall short daily.

Then I ran across a journal note to myself on this one verse, “For by these He has bestowed on us His precious and magnificent promises [of inexpressible value], so that by them you may escape from the immoral freedom that is in the world because of disreputable desire, and become sharers of the divine nature.” 2 Peter 1:4 I got excited, so I opened the entire chapter and began reading. And as I read the mirror started to reveal my reflection. And oh boy it is not as beautiful as I’d like it to be. But it is the truth about me. I can admit to God when I don’t like what I see or who I am. Why? Because I want to be more like Him and less like myself. I know what His word says about us as people but also what it says about His saving grace and His everlasting love that transforms us into righteousness. It causes us to be joint heirs, sons and daughters of a King, blessed and highly favored.

Jesus left us some amazing instructions on how to live the best life possible on this earth. He did not say we would not have hard times. But he showed us how to get through even the storms of life and still have joy knowing that trouble doesn’t last always. I for one intent from this point on to follow more closely these instructions so that I may live the a life of dynamic spirituality and godliness, and share in all of the promises that He has promised to us.

Those instructions I spoke about, they’re below:

2 Peter 1:1-12 Amplified Bible (AMP)

1 Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle (special messenger, personally chosen representative) of Jesus Christ,

To those who have received and possess [by God’s will] a precious faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ: Grace and peace [that special sense of spiritual well-being] be multiplied to you in the [true, intimate] knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. For His divine power has bestowed on us [absolutely] everything necessary for [a dynamic spiritual] life and godliness, through true and personal knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. For by these He has bestowed on us His precious and magnificent promises [of inexpressible value], so that by them you may escape from the immoral freedom that is in the world because of disreputable desire, and become sharers of the divine nature. For this very reason, applying your diligence [to the divine promises, make every effort] in [exercising] your faith to, develop moral excellence, and in moral excellence, knowledge (insight, understanding), and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, steadfastness, and in your steadfastness, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly affection, and in your brotherly affection, [develop Christian] love [that is, learn to unselfishly seek the best for others and to do things for their benefit]. For as these qualities are yours and are increasing [in you as you grow toward spiritual maturity], they will keep you from being useless and unproductive in regard to the true knowledge and greater understanding of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is blind—shortsighted [closing his spiritual eyes to the truth], having become oblivious to the fact that he was cleansed from his old sins. 10 Therefore, believers, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you [be sure that your behavior reflects and confirms your relationship with God]; for by doing these things [actively developing these virtues], you will never stumble [in your spiritual growth and will live a life that leads others away from sin]; 11 for in this way entry into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly provided to you.

12 Therefore, I will always be ready to remind you of these things, even though you already know them and are established in the truth which is held firmly in your grasp. 13 I think it right, as long as I am in this earthly tent, to inspire you by reminding you, 14 knowing that the laying aside of this earthly tent of mine is imminent, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. 15 Moreover, I will diligently endeavor [to see to it] that even after my departure you will be able, at all times, to call these things to mind.