25 January 2017

Is your family your number one priority?


my hubby and i have already raised our children and enjoying the grandchildren now. along the way, we made lots of mistakes. we also learned a lot as well. i do wish we had done things differently becuz of the knowledge we both now have. God has been good to us and blessed us with grandchildren and we love them dearly. with our learning and growing in God's ways, we see where we could have done things better or not do things we did do.

as u read the words below, ask God to show u where u can improve and how to go about practicing it.

25 January 2017


Morning

Proverbs 17:6 NASB

[6] Grandchildren are the crown of old men, And the glory of sons is their fathers.


FAMILY MATTERS The older I get, the more I love my family. My wife, my sons and daughters in law and my six grandchildren are more precious to me than anything else in this life. But if I were starting my family over again, I'd strive to do better. I would listen more. Love my wife more. Spend more quality time with my children. Praise them more often for doing right. If I had it to do over again I'd let them know how grateful to God I am for each of them, every day. Because family matters. Puritan reformer and preacher Jonathan Edwards married Sarah Pierpoint, and they had 11 children. Every day Jonathan and Sarah Edwards would sit down with each one of those children alone, and say "Let's talk a little about you." Also, every day, this husband and wife rode on horseback together for an hour or more. And 150 years after Edwards' death, his family was still growing strong. By 1900, the Edwards clan included 13 college presidents, 66 professors, a law school dean, 100 attorneys, 32 judges, 56 physicians, a medical school president, over 80 public office holders, over 100 missionaries, and a whole platoon of clergymen. Edwards' legacy was not his writings or the sermons he preached. It was the family he loved and led. What about you? Is your family your number one priority? Do they know it? Tell them today, and let your actions prove that it is true.





21 January 2017

past is past


what a good reminder.

Evening
21 January 2017

FACE TO FAITH:

Colossians 3:1-4 NASB

[1] Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. [2] Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. [3] For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. [4] When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.


How would a glimpse into your future change how you live today? 


Paul knew the power of seeing the future. This is why he wrote today’s verses to the church at Colossae, saying to them, “This is your future. This is what God has for you unless you’re being held back, unless you somehow are still being held hostage.” 

Now, some of us live still being held by something other than Christ. For a lot of us, that’s our past. We’re held hostage to our past. 


So let me tell you something about your past. Ready? Here it is—your past is past. It’s 

gone. It’s done. It’s not your future. It’s not what’s in front of you; it’s what’s behind you, and unless you keep looking behind you to what’s already happened then your past will remain simply that—past. 


In fact, here’s what Paul has to say about your past—you died with Christ and have been raised with Him. Notice that those words are past tense, which tells us that’s the past that really matters. Your history without Christ doesn’t matter anymore because your history with Christ includes the cross. Your sinful past, the abuse you suffered, that nonexistent relationship with your absent father, it’s all gone now, crucified with Christ and buried with Him. He paid for it all, and when He was raised from the dead, so were you. 


“Or didn’t you realize this?” Paul says. “If then you were raised with Christ, stop looking to the past! Start looking at your future! Seek the things above, where Christ is, where your life is hidden in Christ even right now!” 


Why would you choose to be the guy in the room that’s connected to his past instead of receiving the victory and freedom and liberty in which Christ has set you free from whatever happened in the past? 


So many people let their whole identity get shaped around what did happen or didn’t happen in their past, and you’re being held by it. But listen, as strong as the past can be, the cross is stronger. 


I care what happened in your past, but we need to see our choice today. We can choose to let our lives be held by our past or to let them be hidden in Christ. Which one will you choose today? 


Prayer 

Lord Jesus, 

Thank You for taking my past with You on the cross so that I have died and been raised with You! I choose to leave my past behind me and focus instead on what You have for me in the future: A life in which I will appear with You in glory! 

Amen



13 January 2017

where do i fit in?


12 January 2017


Evening

FACE TO FAITH:

1 Corinthians 12:18-20 NASB

[18] But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired. [19] If they were all one member, where would the body be? [20] But now there are many members, but one body.


Do you remember back to when you were inside your mother’s womb? 


No, obviously not, but if you could, it’s not hard to image God’s voice speaking over you, His hands carefully crafting you, His heart dreaming ahead into your life of all the things you might become. He is, after all, a good Father and the Creator of us all. 


In that creation, God put into the very core of us which part of His body we were called to become. This part of us lay dormant like a seed until the Holy Spirit filled us upon conversion and brought life to that God-given identity and calling with which we were born. 


Now we face a choice. Will we allow the Holy Spirit to determine our identity, to tell us where we fit in the body of Christ? Or will we insist that we know better than Him, forcing 

our way into what we want the most or think we’ll like the best? 


This should be a silly question. In fact, it should not be a question at all. Obviously, if God is good and trustworthy—and we are believing that He’s good and trustworthy enough to save us from our sins and give us Heaven, after all—then we should trust that whom He created us to be will be the most fulfilling and life-giving identity we could have, beyond all we could accomplish for ourselves. 


Nevertheless, oftentimes we come to church and strive to be like the people around us. Or we strive to be like the leadership up front. Some insecurity about who we are tells us that we need to stand in front of the congregation to be important. We need to be on a board. We need to teach a class. We need to be seen. 

Nonsense. We need to be the part of the body that God determined we would be. 


Submit your life to the Holy Spirit today and allow Him to determine your steps. Let Him set you apart for service in the body and make your time in church about those around you instead of yourself. Then, and only then, will you find the fulfillment you desire. 


Prayer 

Holy Spirit, 

Thank You that You know more about me than I do! I give my life to You today and ask that You help me become the part of Christ’s body You created me to be. 

Amen


my comments:

where do i fit in?


i find myself asking that question quite often.

i find a place to fit in but soon "get kicked out". i find another and get told that i am not wanted there anymore. i find still another but am not included.


i get lost in myself and other things. soon i am forgotten. 


then something happens and i get remembered, added, and included. but i am unsure of motive.


i have been learning thru the journey of finding where i fit in that Jesus is right where i need to be. trusting Him i am where i am becuz He is leading me. all the choices in my past do not matter. He has me right where He wants me to be. i only need to offer myself and God does the rest.

God sees to it that i am remembered, added, and included in just what He needs. all i need to do is accept where i am, and get busy being me in the place He's put me in.


Life Community Church is a great place to exercise being me. i enjoy the home group i am a part of and the people r so nice and welcoming.


i am slowly getting involved and finding where i fit in.


11 January 2017

morning devotion


for those that struggle as i do with being dead to sin, we need to feed the one we want to be stronger. life has its struggles, but learning how to be victorious over them is a journey God walks with us daily. we need to learn to feed our God spirit so we can walk as Jesus walked.

11January2017


EVERYWHERE I GO:

Romans 13

Romans 6:11 NASB

[11] Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.


WHICH DOG WINS? There is a never-ending battle in the life of every believer between the flesh and the Spirit. Have you noticed? Even when we surrender our lives to God, Satan continues to tempt us. We are never given a reprieve from temptation. So how do we wage this life-long battle? And who wins? I believe the answer is revealed in this story. An Alaskan trapper owned several dogs, two of which he trained to fight. Every month he would bring the dogsラone white and one blackラto town to fight. The townspeople would bet on the winner, sometimes betting on the black dog, sometimes on the white one. The owner of the dogs would bet, too - and he always won. One month he'd bet on the black dog, and the black dog would win. Another month he would gamble on the white dog, and the white dog would win. Some folks finally caught on, and asked the man his secret. "How do you know which dog is going to win?" they asked. "You're never wrong." The dog owner shrugged his shoulders, and said, "It's easy, really. The one who wins is the one I feed." Who's going to win in the battle between the Spirit and the flesh? That's easy, too. The stronger one is the one we feed. So we must set our minds on the things of God, seeking to please Him and be obedient to Him in all we do. In that way, we feed the Spirit, and insure victory over sin.


06 January 2017

INVISIBLE CAGES


MORNING


Matthew 6:12 NASB

[12] 'And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.


INVISIBLE CAGES 


Birds live in invisible cages. While we often say someone is "free as a bird," all birdwatchers know that the conduct of birds is rigidly fixed. They are prisoners of the land they fly over and slaves to the air they fly through. John and Jean George told of a wild cardinal they saw die because he could not break through this invisible barrier. He was strangled on a piece of property that was cleared of trees and plowed under. They said, "Almost all birds live and love and die behind bars of nature's compulsions. They are captives in cages of their own instincts, from which, with rare exceptions, they cannot escape." 


Birds are not the only creatures locked behind invisible prison bars. James tells us that some people are lost through bitterness. He plainly says we can obtain mercy from God only as we are merciful: For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. On the other hand, those who have learned to forgive are free because mercy triumphs over judgment (James 2:13). 


Those locked in the invisible prison of an unforgiving spirit will never be free. Those who seek forgiveness from Christ, however, find they first must forgive. In letting go of their anger, they find real freedom. 

Forgive someone today.


learning to live a life with forgiveness takes practice.


forgiveness does not change the hurt. forgiveness releases u from the cage.


forgiveness lets u move forward, even if it is one step at a time. there is nothing stronger that holds us back from living a full life as unforgiveness. i know, i had to learn to forgive. when i did, my life started moving forward. the hardest thing to do was forgiving myself.

now God and i walk the forgiving road together. i am mad new every day as i walk the forgiving road.







What do you do on Mondays?


06 January 2017


i know there r several people that r struggling just to keep their family together becuz of many different things facing them. i happen to be one of them. last nite my husband asked "Why is this happening to me?" i had no answer. my only thought was that God is in control. 


FACE TO FAITH:

1 Corinthians 16:13-14 NASB

[13] Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. [14] Let all that you do be done in love.


1 Corinthians 16:13-14 MSG

[13-14] Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you've got, be resolute, and love without stopping.


What do you do on Mondays? 


Church is done. Your religious duty of time with believers—half of whom you think are nuts—and of giving money into the offering are done. Now the rest of your week is before you. What do you do? 


I know you know the right answer, but I’m interested in the true answer. 

Do you forget God during the week? Do you live a double-life? Can your family recognize God in your life when you aren’t dressed up for church? 

You see, anyone can behave themselves for two hours on a Sunday. The real test comes when real life hits. 


It is for this reason that Paul wrote our verses for today, inspired by the 

Holy Spirit who saw us and our struggles all the way back when He gave these words to Paul’s pen. And you know what, the faith and the love in our verses today are inseparably connected, and they need to be connected in our lives as well. 


First, we need to stand fast in our faith. That means that our faith does not end when we drive out of the church parking lot. Our faith exists beyond Sunday morning into Mon- day morning when we go serve our employers at work and when we come home from a long Monday at work to our family who needs our attention, affection, and love. God stays present in our lives in all of these things. 


“Well, what about me?” you say. Just wait, we’ll get to that. 


We keep God present in our lives by living with love. Everything we do, we do it because of, and out of, and with, and through love. Our motivation is love. Our desire is love. And the biggest sign of this is that we do not live selfishly, but rather we live with others in mind first, seeking the benefit of others before insisting on our own desires. 


It is this kind of love that requires faith—faith that someone else is going to take care of us when we make our life about loving others first. That is why we need to be strong and brave, because it can be scary living with others in mind first, trusting God to meet our needs, to be our provider. 


Yet that is the life to which we are called. Will you choose to live that life today? 


Prayer 

Lord Jesus, 

Thank You for loving me! You are the perfect example of someone who loved others even when it cost You everything. Please help me to be strong and full of faith that You will take care of me as I choose to love the people around me! 

Amen


the questions:

What do you do?

Do you forget God during the week?

Do you live a double-life?

Can your family recognize God in your life when you aren’t dressed up for church?

Well, what about me?


i have known people who lived a double life. they did all the right stuff at church but when it came to living life, they did it their way hurting not only themselves but those around them. i happen to be on the end of some of those people that got hurt. it hurt for a while but God soon took care of that and i was able to move on.

i learned from those people that i did not want to be someone that lived a double life. i had to choose to be true to my faith or leave it on the ground. happy to say, i chose to be true to my faith.


take a good truthful look at yourself as u contemplate the questions above. the last one sounds a bit selfish but God will give u time to refresh yourself and rest. just need to put God first and the rest falls into place.



04 January 2017

building blocks for our lives


"Does your life feel like a war right now?" is a question in the first block given. i can definitely say, "Yes my life feels like a war right now."
talking with my youngest and hearing what she has to say about where they r at as a family, i can give the same answer. i hear her as she struggles with a newborn and 2 boys under the age of three. the tone of her voice and the frustration and desparation i hear pains me. i wish i could take it from her. but i know the struggle is building character and showing her that she can do this; even if she cannot see it right now.

this scripture speaks to me as a reminder to keep praying and trusting God in my life. i have seen His mighty hand move many mountains in my life. the current mountain/valley will soon be decided. it is just over a week before we walk the beginning of the finality of our situation. many have been praying and standing in the gap with us and for us. i am so thankful for all the prayers sent on our behalf. they have most certainly been felt by both of us.

so as u read this scripture and it's commentary, pray that God makes this alive in your own life so u can be the best u that u can be.

~evening devotion~

FACE TO FAITH:

Colossians 4:2-6 NASB

[2] Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving; [3] praying at the same time for us as well, that God will open up to us a door for the word, so that we may speak forth the mystery of Christ, for which I have also been imprisoned; [4] that I may make it clear in the way I ought to speak. [5] Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity. [6] Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.


Colossians 4:2-6 MSG

[2-4] Pray diligently. Stay alert, with your eyes wide open in gratitude. Don't forget to pray for us, that God will open doors for telling the mystery of Christ, even while I'm locked up in this jail. Pray that every time I open my mouth I'll be able to make Christ plain as day to them. [5-6] Use your heads as you live and work among outsiders. Don't miss a trick. Make the most of every opportunity. Be gracious in your speech. The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.


Paul finished the letter with a flurry, fast and furious instructions written out like bullet points for life. He was almost done writing to the Colossians, but there were a few more things he wanted them to know. 


Far more than an afterthought, these are building blocks for our lives, strategies for successful living. I find seven distinct things we need to see in these verses: 


First, Paul shows us that we win our war through prayer. Does your life feel like a war right now? Your answer is prayer, because prayer is where you find God and get His heart written inside your heart. 


Second, walk in wisdom. Wisdom sets us up for successful lives like nothing else because it teaches us the right thing to do in all circumstances. The world needs answers like never before. When we use wisdom toward unbelievers, it provokes them to demand an explanation for how incredible our lives are. 


Third, a witness to the world. Our wisdom should be our witness, in that our wisdom just spills over into all things that we do. The world is watching, and we must be wise with our lives so that the world sees God’s transformational love when it sees us. 


Fourth, redeem the time. Literally, this means to purchase time. When the moments of opportunity come, seize them! And in between these moments, work to produce more of them. 


Five and six go together—“Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt.” The world needs answers, not arguments. It is good to be able to defend your faith, but you will not argue someone into the kingdom. A convinced mind is not the same as a convicted heart. 


Seventh, we have a wonderful hope. When the world sees the power of Christ’s cross as it transforms our lives, they will ask us about our hope. When they see our confidence in the face of disaster, they will wonder how we can keep hope. And when they ask us about it, we need to have an answer. 


These seven things will lead us to successful life and witness before the world. Do you have them in your life? 


Prayer 

Lord Jesus, 

Thank You that You help me to follow Your Word! I cannot do these seven things by myself; I need Your help. Please transform my life so that the world will want the life I have! 

Amen


02 January 2017

let God be your hero

i have started spending a bit of time in God's word before going to bed. and this particular scripture hit me just right.


not only does it speak to me for my own life and situation but i saw that it also spoke to a situation a friend is going thru. i hope they see this post and r encouraged.


our situation is quiet right now. both of us r a little stressed but trusting God. thanks for the prayers on our behalf, they r greatly appreciated.


02December2017 (evening)


FACE TO FAITH:

Philippians 3:20-21 NASBS

[20] For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; [21] who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.


What has God conquered for you? Go ahead, run the list through your mind. Here are a few that I can think of: 

Death. Hell. Sin. The devil. 


You already had those on your list? Awesome, what else do you have? Come on now, there must be something you can think of. 


It’s really too bad if you cannot think of something that God has conquered for you. I mean, I absolutely am glad if you can say with confidence that Jesus has conquered death and Hell for you—that’s where our lives with Him begin, but that is not where His involvement in our lives ends. 


You have a calling on your life, a path created by God specifically for you that He has called you to walk. 


Maybe you know something about this calling and you are asking God to show you the direction in life that He wants you to go. All of this is wonderful, but there is one more thing that you should know: 


You will face obstacles as you work to live out your calling. 


Perhaps you are facing some right now. What difficulties are staring you in the face today? Do they seem to block your road to the things you know God has called you to do? One last question, can you overcome these obstacles on your own? 


The answer to that last question is almost certainly, “No.” However, many of us think we either can or have to handle life by ourselves. Let me break it to you—you could not get to Heaven by yourself, and you cannot fulfill Heaven’s plan for your life by yourself either! 


Jesus is not only our champion who has opened the way for us to get to Heaven, but He is our champion who helps us conquer the obstacles that obstruct our callings. 


How do you find His help against these difficulties? You find it the same way you found salvation—by faith. 


Believe in Him for the help you need. Let Him come and be your hero. 


Prayer 

Lord Jesus, 

Thank You for saving me, and thank You for not leaving me alone to walk through life by myself! Please help me conquer this difficulty that I am facing. Help me to fulfill all You have called me to be! 

Amen