Friday, December 30, 2011

Confession vs. Deceit

Psalm 32:2
2Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit.

David was grateful because God presents us with the His gift of forgiveness. The Lord has the ability to blot out our sins and give us a do over. The catch is we have to be honest with God and confess. Unfortunately, many of us lie to ourselves and others so it's no wonder that the same game is played with God. Yes, it is. We attempt to justify our wrongs with God. "I wouldn't have done this if xyz hadn't have happened or said person didn't do xyz. Here's the deal, two wrongs don't make a right. We can not control the thoughts and actions of others but we can control ourselves. Being honest with God is not because he doesn't know, he knows anyway but he just wants to hear it. Just like when we were children, our parents asked us a question about something we did wrong, not because they didn't know we did it but they wanted to hear our confession. Not giving the confession says one lacks humility and possesses a level of deceit. How can one deceive God when he already knows you say? Because it never came from the perpetrator. He had to use His own infinite wisdom and knowledge to know who did what. So if God didn't know, one would've lied about it. It's just that simple. So the next time we are presented with this situation, which is daily, think about the confession vs the deceit. And know that the Lord deserves our honest confession because he offers the priceless gift of forgiveness.

May you all have a wonderful and HAPPY NEW YEAR!! May God show you a "new" you in 2012!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Let it Happen

Matthew 26:54
54But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?

Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane when he was approached by Judas and the guards of the high priests. He didn't want to have to go through His death on the cross. He prayed and asked God to take away the burden but He knew he couldn't escape His destiny, to die for the world. Peter, James and John still didn't quite understand. As a matter of fact, Peter was known to be quick tempered at that time. And immediately he drew his sword and struck one of the guards. Jesus was outraged because he never lifted a finger to harm anyone's body during his entire ministry. He never taught the disciples to practice the violence Peter displayed. He reminded Peter that if he continued to respond that way, it would bring him death in the same he administered it. He also reminded His inner circle that what was happening was supposed to happen. If Peter had defended Jesus the way he really wanted to, he would have delayed Jesus' destiny but it would've still happened. We can only delay what the Lord has destined for us with quick-tempered or hasty actions. It's best to let what has to happen, just happen. In other words, stop attempting to derail the inevitable. It only brings more pain when we do and it's actually a losing battle. No one can stop what the Lord has determined will happen. Quit attempting to stop what God wants. What He wants is always the best choice and action for our lives. Let it happen.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Holding One Another Up or Down

Romans 12:15
15Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those mourn.

How many of us really believe that we are to share in one others joys and sorrows as the apostle Paul wrote? More importantly, how many of us actually practice it? Simon of Cyrene had to help carry the cross when Jesus was too weak to carry his own to Golgotha in Matthew 27. It was actually a symbolism of how we must share in the burdens of others not just their joys. Truthfully, many revel in the mourning of others. They would rather see a person fall than succeed. Yet it is our duty as followers of Christ to hold one another up just as Simon assisted Jesus. As the apostle Paul said, we are one body with many parts and no one part can function on its own. But some mask themselves as having the quality of caring yet it's nothing more than to go behind your back. Some only care to know the details of your life as a way to sabotage you when you are unaware. Everyone who says claims to be for you is not actually for you. It's hard to believe that people would be this way but it goes back to a spirit of jealousy and envy. When you succeed or have something to rejoice about, it may remind others of the choices they have or have not made and therefore turning on you is the way to relinquish themselves of responsibility for the state their lives are in. Then there are others who are excited because you are excited and desire to assist in propelling you forward or are even inspired and encouraged because seeing how the Lord has blessed you reminds them that their blessing will arrive in due time. But when you are in despair, there are some who will earnestly mourn with you. They will cry and pray with you when you need it. While others are only taking pleasure in knowing that you're not at the mountain top. How will you know which is which? That's where the Lord comes in. We are to guard our hearts because it's the wellspring of life as King Solomon says in Proverbs 4:23. Share when the Lord says to share and be quiet when He says to be quiet. We must learn how to listen for the prompting of the Holy Spirit to reveal what He says to reveal. Those that are not who they say they are will tell on themselves sooner or later. It's unfortunate because the act committed against you is actually against God and it's God who one must contend with when any wrong is done to his child. Those that are, God will confirm.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stand or Else

Isaiah 7:9
9The head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is only Remaliah's son.
If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand at all.

The prophet Isaiah had stern words to Ahaz king of Judah. The words were actually an encouragement though stern. It was a moment of God's tough love through the prophet. Ahaz was concerned because the country Aram had aligned itself with Ephraim (Israel). Ahaz had lost a battle to Aram in the past so Ahaz was afraid. But the alliance was one forged in human strength. What Ahaz or Judah had was divine strength. And it was the same divine strength that David fought with against Goliath. One can have an army of ten thousand and still can not stand against God and win. Isaiah had to remind Ahaz that it would be his faith that would get him through what looked to be impossible. If Ahaz wasn't willing to stand on faith, he would not stand period.God was even willing to give Ahaz a sign as confirmation that he would be victorious. And that it what we must take from this. There will be times when things look impossible, but it should never be about the way things look. Looks can be deceiving. And the enemy loves to use FEAR (false evidence appearing real) as the tactic to take us down. The fear takes hold when doubt creeps in. Doubt that we are worthy, capable, etc. Doubt is the seed and the fear is the tree that grows from it. Once the tree of fear is in place, one needs a saw, tornado or hurricane of events to knock it down. The seed has to be crushed before it can ever burst forth with roots for the mind. The crusher of negative seeds is faith that God will do the impossible if He's told you it will be done. He is even generous enough to show us signs as He was willing to do for Ahaz. Though Ahaz realized he didn't need to put the Lord to the test. He knew just as it is now, that God is not a man who lies. When He says it's yours, then trust, it's yours. We must wait patiently for the instructions on how to move just as the Lord gave to Ahaz. So stand firm in faith. If you're not willing, then you better just lay down right now.

Monday, December 26, 2011

No Respecter of Gender or Age

Joel 2:28-29
28And afterward I will pour out my Spirit on all people, Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. 29Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days.

The minor prophet Joel spoke in the Old Testament and is referenced in the New Testament when the apostle Peter repeats the words given by the Lord to the prophet Joel. Peter recites him in Acts 2:17 to extend what the Lord said through the Prophet Joel to the Gentiles. How can this be that the Lord would not be a respecter of gender and age when we see so much detailed on it? First, the Lord was speaking of what would be once the Messianic period approached (meaning the time of Christ and afterward) according to Zondervan's NIV Study Bible. The Lord made it clear that He would give His Holy Spirit generously. In order to restore us as His people before the second coming, much work is needed. Christ's birth, life, death and resurrection is for this purpose but how will all know? Jesus said to the disciples himself that the harvest is plenty but the workers are few. Therefore, the Lord requires many in the field. Whomever is willing He will use. None of us can determine who receives what spiritual gifts and what assignments as the Lord is the creator, Elohim. He determines who does what and for us as His people to attempt to attach gender or age when the Lord has not implies that we know better Him. Hmmm.. Many have been tossed to and fro with misinterpretations. This is exactly what Satan, Lucifer, Beelzebub (all names of the enemy of our souls) wants because confused people do nothing. Ephesians 4:11-16 in the New Testament details what is needed to bring the body of Christ on one accord. When we are all on one accord, the glory of the Lord will show up like never before and unbelievers will be in awe. Those with little faith will have greater faith and the numbers will increase greatly as it did in the Acts 2 church. To get to the increase means taking the limits off of God and just let Him do it regardless of how!! God is NEVER wrong!