Friday, April 25, 2008

Are You Ready Yet?!

"Be ready in season and out of season." 2 Timothy 4:2

I just read today's daily devotional from "My Utmost for His Highest." Oswald Chambers talks about being ready all the time to do the work God has called us to do, even when we don't feel like it or feel inspired. It was a gentle thump on my forehead this morning!

For several weeks now, I have not felt inspired to write for this blog. I felt "blocked" and couldn't put in to words what God was doing on the inside of me. After reading Oswald Chambers' devotional, I now know for sure this blog is not for me, but for God. I asked Him last night to let me be a pencil for Him and as He often does, He used His good sense of humor to answer my prayers.

When God gives us a vehicle to use for His plans, we have to work with and through it if we are going to faithfully answer His call. I continually ask Him to use me for His purposes. When the vehicles, locations or situations for use are not to my liking I get upset or disappointed because they are not to my expectations. You know, I really am not my own and the price that was paid for me is worth more than my thinking I am all that and a bag o' chips!

A life lived for Christ takes surrender, preparation and a willingness to do whatever whenever He commands. What I have discovered is that moments of glory for Him come when we are not looking for them (clearly life is not all about us!).

We get to serve a Mighty God Who wants His children to touch every soul in this world and share the Gospel. This command is not an option, but a life long mission. Because Jesus paid the price for our sins, we don't get to decide when we will be used by God. A command was given and must be obeyed at all times, at all costs. That is our price as His disciples. Jesus did what we could never do. How we must grieve Him when we refuse to be used His way!

Lord, forgive me for being so spiritually minded and of no good for You. Change me today. Help me see what You see. Move me to do. Help me love the way You love. I only want to serve You because I love You so much. Be glorified. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Friday, April 18, 2008

It's All About Jesus

"I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some." 1 Corinthians 9:22

"For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified." 1 Corinthians 2:2

"But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose this day whom you will serve...But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord!" Joshua 24:15

My work, my labor, my purpose must be to Jesus Christ. I live, I do, I breathe all for His glory. He chose me to be a witness to Him in all the world. My life is His for the using. I may have a list of dreams and desires, needs and wants, but ultimately all that is done, given and endured is for His purpose.

He knows the plans He has for us and they are plans for good. "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." He places visions and desires in our hearts for Him to provide and accomplish. The possibility, the power and authority for achievement come from Him and Him alone.

Our sole mission is to do the will of the Father just as Jesus did while here on earth. How do I live the will of my heavenly Father? Through a surrendered life, obedience to His commands, committing my all to Him, trusting in Him and His promises, having His Word flow through my heart, living in a place of gratitude for being saved from sin and death and being available for Him to move through me so that others will know Him. Allowing God to bend, mold, shape, break and rebuild me makes for a testimony, a witness for His glory.

Lord, I may not understand why you send me where you send me or allow me to go through situations and circumstances that are painful or confusing, but this I do know - You are in control! I do know that I love You and I do know that I want to be used by You. So, as scary as these words are to say, have Your way Lord in every area of my life. Make me who You need me to be and help me trust You more and more as I live each day. I love You so. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Blessed Beyond Measure

"If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all His commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God: you will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country. The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock - the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks. Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed. You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out. The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven. The Lord will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The Lord your God will bless you in the land He is giving you. The Lord will establish you as His holy people, as He promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the Lord your God and walk in His ways. Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will fear you. The Lord will grant you abundant prosperity - in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground - in the land He swore to your forefathers to give you. The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of His bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. The Lord will make you the head and not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom. Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them." Deuteronomy 28:1-14

This Scripture basically sums up all that we could ever need and the abundance, graciousness and love of our heavenly Father. Just think, all you have to do is obey Him and He will bless you. Just simply obey.

How difficult is obedience? I think it is as difficult as we choose to make it. Life is perception and reality and how we perceive situations, circumstances, people, ourselves and God will determine what we get out of life. If we perceive all of the above as God sees them, we really are heirs, conquerors and a light to the world. If we choose to focus on the hardship of our circumstances, all that is ugly in the world and our failures, we may suffer more than God intended.

I know life isn't easy, but I also know that I want all that God has for me. Can you imagine your life filled with all of the blessings listed in Deuteronomy 28:1-14? What would you do? I know I would be praising Him like never before. I would do all I knew how to do and then some to be sure He gets all the glory, honor and praise. I would believe Him.

Now, why should we wait for those blessings to come before we praise Him and give Him glory? Doesn't His Word tell us to rejoice and be glad in Him, delight in Him, turn away from all other gods, love Him with all that we have and are, love others as we love ourselves and be witnesses to Him in all the world? If we are doing those things along with renewing our minds, can't we be blessed?

Are you doing those things already? Aren't you already obeying those commands and seeking help to be even better today than you were yesterday? Is He giving you help? Is there food on your table? Do you have a roof over your head? Do you have a job or some type of opportunity to learn, grow and give back? Do you have transportation whether it is public, a car or your two feet? Did you wake up this morning? Is there someone or many someones in your life who you love and who love you as well? If you have any of these things, all or more of them, then you are already blessed. Then you are living a blessed life.

Take some time today, even if it is just a few minutes and list all that you have and all that you are grateful for. Then praise God for each and everything you listed as each one is a blessing from Him. Then ask Him to help you see the world, your life and yourself as He sees and watch more blessings unfold. It doesn't matter whether you think you are worthy, what matters is that He is able and willing to bless you exceedingly abundantly above all that you could ask or think simply because He loves you.

The simplicity of it all - He loves you and desperately wants to bless you. All you have to do is obey and receive.

May you be blessed today and every day.

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Pleasure of His Presence

"Delight in the Lord..." Psalm 37:4

Delight in the Lord for the simple pleasure of His Presence. Not with your own agenda, but just for His company. Quietly listen for Him. Rest in Him. Let Him speak to your heart sweet, sweet somethings.

The simple pleasure of His Presence - a gentle place of surrender. Lay down every care, every need and every dream. Let Him flow through you. Know His joy. His warm embrace - a precious touch.

Take my hand, O Lord and sit with me. Tell me Your secrets, share Your joys. Wrap Your loving arms around me and hold me near. Just love me so. In Jesus' Holy and Precious Name, Amen.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

The Glory is His

"Oh Zion! Put on thy strength. For the glory of the Lord is hidden within thee. Oh Zion! Put on they strength. Be fortified, arise and conquer. Oh Zion!" - Dwell, by Fred Hammond and the Radicals for Christ Jesus

My purpose, our purpose is to glorify the Lord in every area of our lives. Through belief, faith, trust, surrender, humility and patience, we are to seek and honor Him. It is then that we can be used for His purposes so that He, not we, may be glorified. Surrender so that He may freely mold us and transform us into the likeness of His Son, Jesus Christ.

Glory to God! He is glorious! Majesty! All eyes are to be on Him and His majesty, not for what He has done, but for Who He is - I AM WHO I AM. What power and might! And in the midst of that power is a sweet, sweet love for all people.

Bow down and worship Him. Acknowledge Him for all that He is. Have passion for His glory. Have passion for Him, joy in His Presence. Delight in His blessings. Trust in His promises. Do all that He commands for His glory. Commit all that you are and all that you have to Him.

You belong to Him - the glorious One. You are His joy and delight. He will move heaven and earth for you. It is by His grace that you are who you are, that you have what you have and that you are destined to become all that He created you to be. All for His glory!

Lord, may all that I am be for Your glory. May every word and every action bring glory to Your Name. May I be continually humbled by Your grace and used by You so that others may know You. Be glorified Lord! In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

All-Consuming Passion

"For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified." 1 Corinthians 2:2

My soul longs to be in step with Jesus at all times. The time I take with Him is the light of my day and the joy within me. I love sitting in His Presence, learning what He has to teach and hearing Him whisper precious somethings in my ear. What a joy You are my Lord and Savior!

As Paul states in the Scripture above, his sole focus was Jesus Christ and Him crucified. My desire is to live my life in the same way. What changes need to be made in doing this! Yet, the Lord knows my heart and I have chosen to surrender every day so that He can mold me into the character of His Son. I want to be all-consumed. I want to ooze Jesus out of every pore in my body. When I walk, I want the world to see our Savior Jesus Christ. No, I am not perfect, but my God can make me that way. I choose to lay down my life as a sacrifice for His pleasure.

Through constant study, meditation,worship and praise, gratitude on my lips and in my heart, humility and unwavering expectation my transformation will resemble that of Jesus Christ . Fill me with Your light Lord Jesus and let me light up the world for You! When You look down upon this earth, I pray You say the same words You said about King David, "I have searched the land and found this David, son of Jesse. He is a man whose heart beats to my heart, a man who will do what I tell him."

May my heart beat to Your heart. May my dreams and desires be Yours. May I be totally consumed with living my entire life for Your glory. May all that I say and do represent You well. May I know nothing except You Jesus Christ and You crucified!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Desperate for God

"He said to her, 'Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.'" Mark 5:34

How desperate are you to want God moving in your life? How desperate are you to want your dreams achieved and your needs filled? Are you desperate enough to reach for Him at all costs? Will you turn away from who and what is not working in your life to Him Who will do a mighty work instead? Are you desperate enough to believe Him at His Word?

The woman who suffered an issue of blood for years is a great example of perseverance and faith. She was not going to let Jesus pass by without touching Him. She believed enough to press on to touch just the hem of His garment, hoping for healing.

What are you hoping for? What do you want Him to do in your life? What do you want to be freed from? Do you believe enough to reach out to Him? Do you believe that if you reach just a little bit more that you will touch the hem of His garment? The sweetest words to hear are, " your faith has made you well."

I just finished reading a great book called, "Prepare for Rain" by Micheal Catt. His church members wrote and produced the awesome movie, "Facing the Giants." Both the book and movie feature perfect examples of people desperate for God, people who want to see a move of God in their lives. These people prayed faithfully for change, greater faith, strength, blessings and the abilities and opportunities to reach others for the Lord. They faithfully made plans, sought God's approval, direction and correction and moved when and where He told them to move.

After I finished the book, I asked myself if I was desperate enough to believe and reach for God in the visions and dreams He has given me. I am comfortable in so many areas of my life and know that I am going to have to make some changes in order to walk out God's plans for me. In some areas I am ready to jump out of the boat and in other areas, I want to jump but don't want to leave my safe place. It's hard to jump out and completely let go when you don't know all the details of where you are going and how you are going to get there. But a decision has to be made. Do I love the Lord my God enough to jump out, let go of my boat or comfort zone and do His will? I really want to, but am I desperate enough to jump?

God, it is scary to ask You to change me so that I am desperate enough to seek only You and Your will. I know the comforts of this world are not true and will at some point let me down, unlike You, Who will always be my safety net. Make me desperate enough to reach for You, determined to touch You. Replace any and all fear with boldness and blessed assurance in You. I do want to serve You and see the visions You have placed in my heart come to fruition. Move me to do whatever it takes for Your visions to come to pass. In Jesus' Name, Amen.