NLT Bible Journey Page 2

4/24/2015 On…

July 2, 2015

2 Kings 20: 1-22: 2

Have you heard bad health news or other news? Even fatal news? We are to cry out to God as Hezekiah did. His prayers worked; he begged God for his life. God not only gave him 15 more years, but he blessed the kingdom and protected it for his own name sake.  God often gives us even more blessings that we ask for, if we ask. It’s his timing though, remember that when you get ants in your pants.

Even when things look fatal, do not just give up but become a prayer warrior. Do not be afraid to cry like a baby; complaining to God is okay. This cements your dependence on him; and he loves that.

Interesting- an ointment was made out of figs and put it over the boil. It healed. I would love to know what qualities a fig has in healing wounds. We must research.

Then, Hezekiah in his weakened state asked for not just one confirmation but two. We too can call out to God for confirmation. After all, we want to make sure that we are making decisions pleasing to God, not going our own way. Sometimes clarification is needed to make sure you are hearing God’s voice and not your own.

So once Hezekiah got better he had visitors from Babylon. He showed off and claimed to show them everything that he owned. He should have been humble. He forgot that everything he has, including his health is because of God. Everything we have is Gods. So we should not be greedy or boastful about our “earthly” treasures which have no value at all in the big scheme of things. Be humble and give credit to God for everything.

Because of his lack of appreciation for God and all that he has done for him; God allowed Babylon to take away all of these cherished treasures.

So the next King is 12 years old- bad idea people! He did just as his mother did- evil stuff. We certainly can be different than our parents. The first part is to recognize a weakness and to make a conscious decision to improve in that area. The second part is to make sure that no temptation at all is near you or influencing you in the area of weakness in your family. Generational curses do exist. Bad habits are passed down. Manasseh sacrificed his own son in fire. He practiced sorcery, divination and consulted with mediums and psychics just as his wicked mother did. He even set up a statute in the Temple. He not only was bad himself, but he contributed to others to be really bad. We must be very careful not to be bad influences on others especially in known areas of weakness where they are concerned.

Then the next king Amon- did evil just as his Dad did. Are you seeing that we must completely submit to God to help us to go to war against generational sinful behaviors? It’s crazy how easy it is to fall into our parents footsteps of bad choices.

Finally Josiah, who was eight years old- who had a good mentor did what was pleasing to the Lord.

As I’m reading and seeing more loser Kings than good,  I keep thinking why on earth would anyone want an earthly king when they had God with them all the time- cloud by day, fire by night? Crazy that they would beg for a sinful earthly king- when they had the supreme of all supreme- with them: YHWH!

It’s so easy to pass down those terrible traits. Sometimes we can repeat our parent’s behaviors without knowing that we did it. We may see that we have mirrored some of the same bad choices they made. We may look at our relationship and say “OH, my marriage looks like my parents relationship or “my spouse has characteristics or qualities of my Dad or Mom. “ We may even find that we repeat not just one of our parent’s big mistakes, but many. Yikes. Stop the curse, stop the mirroring of bad…..HELP me Father!

I know in my family one of the weaknesses is the “mystic.” I have thrown away palm reading books and tarot cards. I do not even read astrology in the back of a magazine. I am unsure where to draw the line, as I know that numbers are significant in the bible and God speaks to us with the stars and moon. So because I am unsure of the line, but I am sure of what is written, I avoid anything that feels or looks mystic in nature. I am safe when I do that.

I come from a long line of Yellers. I have asked my husband to make me accountable if I raise my voice or get a tired grumpy sound. I am not completely healed as momma bear comes out some, as re-wiring learned traits is not easy. But I hardly ever say a curse word ever. I slammed my finger in the door this week- not a peep of bad word came out of my mouth. Can I get a high 5?

I’m 90% better on my short fuse – inherited from mom, dad and several grandparents. I sometimes surprise myself at my peaceful and calm responses to seriously annoying situations. This is part of my “born again” process. YEE HAW. This little piece of God’s fruit is growing…that’s a good sign. As long as we are refining and growing and not making excuses —that’s a good thing. We have to “look in the mirror and make a change.” We can’t change others, but we can change our response to others. AMEN?

Thoughts of Act 21: 18-36

Paul most likely took a Vow of the Nazirite to show everyone how serious he took the laws of Moses. If anyone ever tries to convince you that Paul said the laws were abolished with Yeshua, this vow he took will surely help in the defense. This vow and the rules that go with it was to debunk this idea that he was swaying or telling anyone not to obey the laws. He went so far as to shave his head in a temple ritual- a purification process, a public display of allegiance to God’s Torah and laws.

With new believers, they voted to take baby steps with the gentiles. They wanted to make sure that they stayed away from things that could tempt them into going back to their pagan ways. The first ones they wanted to press on them was not to eat food given to idols, from consuming blood or meat from strangled animals and from sexual immorality. The new believers were going to Temple and learning the Torah on the Sabbath.

As they continued in their walk, they would learn the other requirements. They did this to ease them into the process,  as not to run off or scare the gentiles back into the detestable practices or security of what they had known as pagan worshippers. In no way, did this compromise mean the laws of God were not for the gentiles. Jesus himself says not one word will pass away until all has been accomplished. He accomplished much with his sacrifice, so the laws about sacrifice are no longer needed.

You can see that a mob breaks out against Paul about the rumor that he came to destroy the law. Interesting enough, this is why he spurred on the killing of Stephen. He was part of the same sector of Jews who thought false things- that Jesus came to abolish the laws and that his disciples like Stephen also came to abolish the law. This is so far from the truth; it’s not even funny.

We can also see here that Paul is known for taking Gentiles to the temple. Why would he do that? To immerse the word of God, the laws and the truth into his new fellow believers of course. So this also tells us that in no way shape or form is Paul telling all of us gentiles today that the law does not apply to us.

We are grafted in believers, into the main olive tree. As those who are grafted in, and as with the foreigners who left Egypt with the Israelites, the laws apply to us too.

Paul was nearly killed for the very thing he plotted to kill others for…Does God have a way of teaching us lessons or what? Poor Stephen died because of this very lie. And now the very one who approved Stephen’s death is almost killed for the same false truth.

Paul is a Jew through and through. A Pharisee born of a Pharisee- he had the entire Torah memorized- it was required of Pharisees. Jesus was a Jew who came to put the heart back into the law, to eliminate legalism and show what God the Father really meant with the laws. The Sanhedrin were becoming so legalistic that they cared more about a rule being followed then caring for human people, loving others. Much of  their unwritten laws were pressed upon people out of the Sanhedrin’s power trip.

You can re-read Matthew or John and see that obedience is the evidence of faith that is required to be born again and get Salvation. Not everyone who says Lord, Lord…will be let in. To know Jesus is to obey God. What comes around goes around that is for sure!

Thoughts of Psalm 150: 1-6

Praise him always. This week I got a big deal at work. I praised him and sang a happy song raising my hands to heaven. “Thank you YHWH, Thank YHWH…You’re so good to me. “ Silly but I make it a point to never take credit for anything, even at work – I praise and Give God the glory. It’s always him. Everything I have is his. Nothing is because of my doing. Every talent I have was given by my Father. ( heavenly)

Thoughts of Proverbs 18: 9-10

Laziness has got to go! Get busy- work, help out…time is money. Do your part to contribute around the house and family etc…The Sabbath is for resting!

Run To God and you will be safe.

 

 

July 1, 2015

2 Kings 18: 13-19:37

People can threaten you, speak lies, use intellect and historical evidence to back up their arrogant arguments. They can use fear tactics to control you and manipulate you into doing what they want. They can use false promises and paint a terrible picture if you don’t obey them.

But know this, people are not God. People are not in control. God is in control. He is the giver and the taker of life. When we humble ourselves, cry out to him, repent and ask him for help; he will hear us. The enemy whatever form he comes in will have no power over the God of all the universe.

As you can see, the Assyrian’s, even with all their numbers, strength and winnings, had absolutely no power over the angel that God sent to destroy 185,000 in the middle of the night.

So no matter what you are battling, or who you think has power over you, think again. God has the final say. What are we to do when we are scared or worried or feel threatened?

We are to pray! We are to praise God for his power and strength. We are to ask him to open his eyes and ears to the situation and to come to our aid. We are to mourn and cry out to God, as our dependence is completely on YHWH, the almighty God who has power over everything!

There is no enemy seen or unseen that will have power or dominion over you, if you love God with all your heart and soul and you depend on him and cry out to him. He will direct you, protect you and guide you! He will also correct you…so walk in obedience and righteousness. If you goof- humble yourself- say you are sorry! And work hard to walk in his righteousness.

Thoughts Acts 21: 1-17

So this could go one of two ways.  Do you listen to the Holy Spirit and obey?Or do you go your own way?

God will often give us warnings and if we listen and obey: we will be safe. He will lead us down the path we need to go. Was Paul disregarding the warnings that the Holy Spirit that was given by the believers about him not going to Jerusalem? Was he so stubborn that he wanted to go his own way? After all, that is in his character. When we submit our lives to Jesus, all of us, even Paul fight our own character flaws. Being born, made new is not done overnight. It is a process as we move closer to God.

Or were his friends fears driving this concern?  Was he really  trusting God’s plan?

We must be careful not to let fear drive our lives but to trust God. But we also must listen to the quiet voice within us or others that bring us warnings. It’s very important to listen to God, obey our instincts. Often in life, when I overlooked a red flag, I ended up paying for it big time. Now God did correct me and teach me through my failure to listen- but that process was not always fun.

But I also know that not only should we listen to God, pray for guidance, but we should also not let fear drive our life.

God is in control of this world, this nation and our eternal destination. So when we are faced with unknowns, when our path is not clear; we are to pray to God and ask him to comfort and lead us. Prayer is a powerful tool.

God will answer you. Pay close attention, he will communicate and give you an answer. You just have to pay attention and watch for the confirmations. Every time I cry out, he clarifies my concern or question. Sometimes the clarification will come in various forms, for me to be sure he’s answering my question.

So we do not know here if Paul is trusting God or if he isn’t listening. Paul has many character flaws, as we all do. He made many mistakes in his ministry, he is not perfect. So just as we read the flaws of King David and we see that his mistakes caused family heartache; we must also realize that Paul was not perfect either and just because he said this or that or did this or that does not mean God approved- just as in the case of David’s affair.

In fact, his writings are not always all inclusive of all his thoughts. Many have taken parts and pieces of Paul’s writings and used them to state unbiblical cases and create false doctrine.

So if there is ever a question, compare Paul’s statement to  the writings of Peter, James and John’s writings- those that walked with Jesus ( Yeshua).

You have to remember that we must also go back and look at what Jesus said- from the mouth of Matthew or John for instance- his true apostles who were taught by Yeshua and experienced him from Baptism to Ascension.

If the part of the writing your reading is not supported by Jesus’s own words or the true apostles own words- then you must know that the writing or portion of Paul’s writings is not all inclusive. Paul’s goal was to not turn off the gentiles by too many rules or laws as not to scare the baby believers off.

But remember Jesus did not come to abolish the law but to show us the true meaning of it, how to obey it. Jesus read and taught from the Torah and from the prophets. He said that not one word of God would pass away. The name Yeshua means YHWH saves. Yeshua loved God with all his heart and would never say that any of God’s laws were not true, but rather the legalistic approach of the Pharisees or Sadducees was not the right application.

So do not let anyone take a “part” of Paul’s writings to claim this or that. In fact, Peter warns us in 2 Peter that Paul’s writing will be twisted and they have- which has infiltrated much false doctrine and beliefs into Christianity.

2 Peter 3 : 14 Therefore, beloved, since you await these things, be eager to be found without spot or blemish before him, at peace. 15 And consider the patience of our Lord as salvation, as our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, also wrote to you, 16 speaking of these things[a] as he does in all his letters. In them there are some things hard to understand that the ignorant and unstable distort to their own destruction, just as they do the other scriptures. 17 Therefore, beloved, since you are forewarned, be on your guard not to be led into the error of the unprincipled and to fall from your own stability.

Peter wanted to warn but to not destroy or tear down Paul’s ministry. So when in doubt or if someone is using Paul’s ministry to justify something that is against God’s laws or something else that doesn’t sit right,  Read John or Matthew about see what Jesus says. Read John, Peter or James to see if what Paul is saying jives with those that personally knew and walked with Jesus. Often his thoughts are in contradiction if taken out of context or not in combination with other writings.  Then, check out other translations. I have compared translations from this NLT and found that things that did not jive with me are not written the same in other versions- I found much relief in comparing translations and God clarified that what I was feeling was wrong- was indeed wrong- and he gave me clarification with many other translations. Hebrew is a very rich language, and we need like 5 words in English to describe one word. So TEST everything! If it doesn’t feel right- study, test and compare. We can not be blind sheep. We must ask God to lead us to real truth.

Thoughts: Psalm 149: 1-9

Do you celebrate God? Do you celebrate all that he has done for you in your life? Do you sing at church and at home songs of praises? We must not be afraid to boast about what God has done and will do in our lives. Smile because God loves you, and he sent his only begotten son, Yeshua, to die for your sins and to show you how to live. You are loved! Feel it! Embrace it! Smile and share with the world!

Thoughts of Proverbs 18: 8

Don’t gossip or start rumors! It’s just not nice.

June 30, 2015

2 Kings 17: 1-18: 12

Before we make any move, especially when we align, join or go into business with someone, we should consult the Lord for direction and confirmation that this is indeed the right move. We should ask him to give us clear understanding of his will for our lives.

God warns of us and shows us through his word and through his servant and son Jesus (Yeshua) what is pleasing and not pleasing. Clearly, we can see that worshipping other God’s is the top on the list of no-no’s. He not only warns us but also gives us pointers through his laws on how to avoid temptation of such practices. We too should rid our lives of anyone or anything that could cause us to sin.

He will send warnings in various forms when our lives our out of whack or not in compliance. He may send people as he did with prophets during the old days. We should obey the commands and decrees. We must not be stubborn like the Israelites were for generations and generations.

God is looking for 100% effort in 100% obedience, out of love. He does not want us to become legalistic in our approach but Yeshua came to help us to remember to keep LOVE in the laws. We are saved by Grace not works.

But it is our faith in God, our love for God and our belief in his son Yeshua that causes us to want to search the scriptures for truth and to want to live righteously and godly. We must be very careful who we hang out with and who we choose as close friends.….If we hang with someone too long their beliefs, words, characteristics will rub off on us- good or bad.

The pagan neighbors had a deadly effect on the Israelites, who “went along” and “joined” the detestable practices. If we hang with disobedient believers even, who claim to love God, yet live in sinful ways, we too will be led like lost sheep astray. Surround yourself with people who truly love God and are on a quest for purifying themselves out of love for YHWH.( God)

When we worship worthless idols, we become worthless. Nothing in our life can be more important than our love for God. We cannot put sports, friends, work, family, hobbies or anything above God. God comes before our children, before our marriage. When we put God first, we must understand his word, his truth and his character. This does not mean we an neglect our families. We should show love to everyone. Then out of love for God, we will obey the laws that he set for us – which were created out of love, not legalism and not restrictions.

Our country today is full of stubborn people, who have rejected the word of God much like the people during the time of Hoshea. There is today a scrambling of ideas. What is right is now wrong and what is wrong is now right.

Did the prophet not speak of such a time as this? If you were to quote some of the 613 commandments today, many would accuse you of be prejudice or unloving. But who are we to question God’s commandments? Are social norms to trump God’s written word? No.

We are to always love everyone no matter what. But we do not have to agree with the sin. “Love the sinner but not the sin. “ We certainly should not condone or encourage sinful behavior- we will have to answer for that. Or applaud people for getting laws passed that are clearly against God’s written word given to Moses.

Isaiah 5: 20Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! 21Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes And clever in their own sight!…

This group of Israelites had gotten so detestable that they sacrificed their own sons and daughters in fire. They consulted fortune-tellers and practiced sorcery. We as a nation have engaged in tons of similar activities as these detestable practices. We have far exceeded the sacrifices of children. Are we to play God when we purposely kill for non-medical issues?

I have repented for my days when I was into and practiced the mystic. I’m so glad and thankful for God for opening my eyes to the truth. I have humbled myself. As each offense from my past comes up in my mind, I repent, humble myself and tell the Father in Heaven how sorry I am. I am so thankful he loved me enough to send his son, to cover my sins. I do not carry the guilt when I release. But what I carry is love for God because of his patience and love for me.

Repentance is a continuous and pleasing process of which the Lord uses to purify his children.

God’s protection is lifted when we disobey, we put ourselves  in jeopardy from seen and unseen enemies. We do this from turning from God.  YHWH is a just, merciful and patient, but there is a point where he will withdraw his protection and blessings. Keep in mind this is something we choose through our heart and actions. We have a choice to choose right.

Be aware of people that cause or influence you to fall away from God or sin. It’s kind of frightening to think that God could use animals like lions to eliminate those who are evil. It wasn’t long ago that I prayed and prayed for a child molester that was on the run to be stopped. I put out flyers all over town. I caught the last part of a clip on the news that a body from an escaped convict was found. I had a hunch it was him.  I had a strong wave of a feeling that God had stopped him. Only his skull was found, they suspect that animals got to him. Scary.

God will send people into your life to help guide you and teach you his ways. He wants us to have the opportunity to know him and turn to him. He is waiting to bless all of us. He loves us. Sin is deadly.

When we commit to living and loving God, we have to let go of practices, ways of life and bad habits that are not in line with his word. We can’t mix pagan ideas, mystic like tarot or palm reading, or praying to angels into our devotion to God. Be careful to keep a very pure form of worship to God, YHWH. We have grace given to us by Yeshua, who was sent by YHWH. But we should never take this grace for granted, it should fill our heart with love and spur us on to learn and obey the word of God, pushing us to purifying our spirits- by imitating Yeshua who was the living word. He showed us how to interpret the law, how to keep the love at the heart of it and how to serve and love both God and others.

I encourage you to really look at all holidays and look at the original roots of the holiday. God forbids us to mix pagan practices with his devotion or festivals. 119 ministries has some good videos on this- call Sunburst. But your heart might be effected when you watch. I had an emotional reaction.

Finally, Hezekiah was up to bat as King over Judah. He removed pagan shrines, smashed pillars. The serpent pillar that Moses meant for good, was now being idolized. He tore that down. He carefully obeyed commands given by Moses. So the Lord was with him. I want the Lord with me. So I am carefully studying the laws, which reveals sins. I want to know what God likes and doesn’t like so I can better please him.

When they fell away, they fell away from God. So they were not protected. The key is when we slip up, to acknowledge the slip up to God. This is important, to have that heart that is humble and repents. We can see by God’s nature in old testament how big his heart is…and he is merciful and loving, even with violators when they acknowledge their sin. This is still necessary even with what Yeshua did for us. Because we are showing God that we are not taking him or his work through his prophet/son- Yeshua for granted.

So let’s say that you have a road rage incident. Just quickly and quietly acknowledge to the Lord that you had a bad moment. Say you’re sorry- forgive me. If I slip up and say something, maybe a word I should not, I quickly say I’m sorry to the Lord. I must say that very few words slip out anymore that are “bad words.” This has been a purification process. When you stump your toe and you don’t slip- you’re doing really great!

The repentance should be ongoing and continuous. And feel Joy because God loves you, forgives you and you are covered with the grace of God.

Thoughts Acts 20: 1-38

We must encourage fellow believers. I hope that I have been an encourager to all of you. You’ll see that Paul celebrated Passover, he still practiced the festivals that God had commanded. It’s important to get together with fellow believers, to eat and talk about the bible and our walk. He rushed off for the Festival for Pentecost.

 

This is today called: Shavuot- which is a celebration of the gift of the Torah. ( first 5 books of the bible) SO this tells us that he did believe in the Torah and the Laws. Some say with Paul’s writings that the laws don’t apply- which is not true. You can read John and see Jesus’s words.

http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/609663/jewish/What-Is-Shavuot.htm

The festival of Pentecost is called Shavuot- which is 7 weeks after Passover. Next year it is 2016: June 11- June 13th – starting at Sundown. It’s a festival renewing the acceptance of God’s gift of the Torah. They read the Torah night before, during festival read 10 commandments.

He tells us that repenting from sin and turning to God and having faith in Jesus is a necessity in this passage. We are to follow Jesus at all costs. We are mere strangers passing through this foreign land, our final destination is with Jesus in God’s kingdom. So if you are insulted because of your beliefs, take it with honor.

It’s important as we do ministry work, that we work hard and not ever be a burden to others.

Thoughts of Psalm 148: 1-14

Praise the Lord , even during the storm. What has he blessed you with? Remember, don’t forget. When the going gets tough, be thankful, praise …..He loves you. Each event is an opportunity to pull him in, to learn and to grow.

 

Thoughts of Proverbs 18: 6-7

If you are constantly in a fight or an argument, examine your tone, and your self. The bible says a fool is constantly quarreling.

Our mouths get is our ruin. It’s better to be quiet, pray and think before we speak. TAME THAT TONGUE! SHHHHHH! Simmer down now!

 

 

 

June 29, 2015

Kings 15: 1-16:20

Are you all in? Or half-in? Have you too refused to turn from all your sins? Problems seem to follow those who have not fully committed to YHWH. We see conspiracy, sickness, death, attacks, ambushes and shortened lives.

We must follow through in cleaning up our life in all areas. Many of these Kings were good in most areas, yet they failed to tear down all of the Pagan shrines. By leaving those up, they were encouraging others to follow other Gods.

Our actions and lack of action in certain areas of our life are sending a message. Or perhaps sometimes we are good in certain areas then we slip up terribly.

The message is either I’m fully with God, I’m a hypocrite or I’m half-hearted. As followers of Yeshua, we are to lead in all areas of our life with godly values and actions. It’s a daily commitment. Is it easy- no. But we can pray to Abba to help us. He loves that kind of prayer.

As you can see we cannot  follow the detestable practices of the pagans. It’s our job to really dig deep into what norms and holidays are derived from pagan practices. We need to look at scripture and ask, “Is this practice or holiday truly one that YHWH commands or Yeshua practiced?” Or “Is this something that was inspired and morphed into Christianity? Or is it even worse, something that the devil would be doing backflips over? We cannot say, ” it’s the heart of the matter and masked what God likes and dislikes. He is the same and he does not change even if the times or the customs or the norms have changed.

We need to remember YHWH abhors all pagan practices. He states in scripture:

Deuteronomy 12: 4

You must not worship the LORD your God in their way.

As you dig and do research into church practices, rituals and religious holidays and you compare to YHWH’s instructions in the bible, you will suddenly see things and feel things you did not feel before.

You will feel that tug between this world and the word, God’s instruction. You may even feel fooled, fooled into believing and even practicing things that you now know are DETESTABLE to God. You may even as I have, cry over feeling fooled and how much you will miss these pagan practices because they started with you as a child.

So I encourage you to pray on it, and to investigate all areas of your life, even the ones that are labeled Christian to see if they can be backed up by YHWH’s instructions or are they in fact an act of disobedience.

When you pray for truth and enlightenment, what you find out will not always be comfortable. In fact, you may start seeing that much of what you thought was okay is in fact not. What you might find out is that churches and even your own family have been tricked. The emergence of pagan rituals were morphed into the original doctrine, festivals and religious practices that were taught by the TRUE apostles, those that walked with Yeshua.

Bottom line is that God wants us ALL in, not half in and we must do what HE wants, not what we want. Yes, we are a work in progress, but we must not use our lack of willpower or commitment or follow through issues as an excuse. What we must do is admit to God our mistakes and our weaknesses and ask YHWH to help us overcome. We must eliminate anything that will influence us negatively, get rid of all pagan born rituals even if they are deemed Christian now and get rid of as much temptation as possible.

The goal is to actively, daily purse godliness in how we act, how we treat others, what comes out of our mouth, how we live, and this includes what we put in our bodies. Everything must be examined.

No excuses. We have to answer for everything. Time is of essence to get this right.

Are you all in? The Kingdom of God is upon us. So examine and get right now. Who knows Yeshua could show up in your life time! Wouldn’t that be awesome!

Thoughts of Acts 19: 13-41

You must be in the Spirit to cast out or else the casting out could back fire. You need God’s backing and approval.

Confess your sinful practices.

Burn or throw away or get rid of anything that is tied to sorcery, witchcraft. You must get all of it, anything like that even if it’s just for fun out of your house and possession! It attracts evil and is a magnet for bad energy and who knows what else.

Do not make any money off of things that are not pleasing to God. Steve once asked me to think about opening up a Haunted House on our land in liberty hill, boasting about how much his friend makes in just a week. I said absolutely no way, no matter how much we would make. God would not approve.

You must speak boldly against idolatry and things not pleasing to God, even if it’s a social norm. Today, we have many main stream religions who have interjected statues similar to this statue of Artemis in their Christian practices. Here are the commandments, the laws of Moses concerning False Gods and sorcery type stuff.

Here are the laws for: Idolatry, Idolaters and Idolatrous Practices- We must make a conscious decision to examine the laws God gave to Moses. This will help us to understand what God wants and doesn’t want. It also reveals sin in us so that we can know what areas we need to work on. We must show  YHWH and his son love by actively trying to please by obedience. Yes, we will slip up. That is why YHWH sent Yeshua to die for our sins. But that in no way means that you have a get out of jail FREE card with no true devotion or effort. We are expected to get to know YHWH, imitate Yeshua,  study the word and compare versions of the bible for accuracy and obey. When in doubt – pray.

  1. Not to make a graven image; neither to make it oneself nor to have it

Made by others (Ex. 20:4)

  1. Not to make any figures for ornament, even if they are not

Worshipped (Ex. 20:20)

  1. Not to make idols even for others (Ex. 34:17; Lev. 19:4)
  2. Not to use the ornament of any object of idolatrous worship (Deut.

7:25)

  1. Not to make use of an idol or its accessory objects, offerings, or

Libations (Deut. 7:26)

  1. Not to drink wine of idolaters (Deut. 32:38)
  2. Not to worship an idol in the way in which it is usually worshipped

(Ex. 20:5)

  1. Not to bow down to an idol, even if that is not its mode of worship

(Ex. 20:5)

  1. Not to prophesy in the name of an idol (Ex. 23:13; Deut.18:20)
  2. Not to hearken to one who prophesies in the name of an idol (Deut 13:4)
  3. Not to lead the children of Israel astray to idolatry (Ex. 23:13)
  4. Not to entice an Israelite to idolatry (Deut. 13:12
  5. To destroy idolatry and its appurtenances (Deut. 12:2-3)
  6. Not to love the enticer to idolatry (Deut. 13:9)
  7. Not to give up hating the enticer to idolatry (Deut. 13:9)
  8. Not to save the enticer from capital punishment, but to stand by at

His execution (Deut. 13:9)

  1. A person whom he attempted to entice to idolatry shall not urge pleas

For the acquittal of the enticer (Deut. 13:9)

  1. A person whom he attempted to entice shall not refrain from giving

Evidence of the enticer’s guilt, if he has such evidence (Deut. 13:9)

  1. Not to swear by an idol to its worshipers, nor cause them to swear by

It (Ex. 23:13)

  1. Not to turn one’s attention to idolatry (Lev. 19:4)
  2. Not to adopt the institutions of idolaters nor their customs (Lev. 18:3;

Lev. 20:23)—–Have we adopted these practices? Forgive us Father.

  1. Not to pass a child through the fire to Moloch (Lev. 18:21)
  2. Not to suffer any one practicing witchcraft to live (Ex. 22:17)
  3. Not to practice observing times or seasons -i.e. astrology (Lev.

19:26)

  1. Not to practice superstitions/witchcraft (doing things based on signs

And potions; using charms and incantations) (Lev. 19:26)

  1. Not to consult familiar spirits or ghosts (Lev. 19:31)
  2. Not to consult wizards (Lev. 19:31)
  3. Not to practice specific magic by using stones herbs or objects. (Deut.

18:10)

  1. Not to practice magical practices in general. (Deut. 18:10)
  2. Not to practice the art of casting spells over snakes and scorpions

(Deut. 18:11)

  1. Not to enquire of a familiar spirit or ghost (Deut. 18:11)
  2. Not to seek the dead (Deut. 18:11)
  3. Not to enquire of a wizard) (Deut. 18:11
  4. Not to remove the entire beard, like the idolaters (Lev. 19:27)
  5. Not to round the corners of the head, as the idolatrous priests do

(Lev. 19:27)

  1. Not to cut oneself or make incisions in one’s flesh in grief, like the

Idolaters (Lev. 19:28; Deut. 14:1)

  1. Not to tattoo the body like the idolaters (Lev. 19:28)
  2. Not to make a bald spot for the dead (Deut. 14:1)
  3. Not to plant a tree for worship (Deut. 16:21)
  4. Not to set up a pillar (for worship) (Deut. 16:22)
  5. Not to show favor to idolaters (Deut. 7:2)
  6. Not to make a covenant with the seven (Canaanite, idolatrous)

Nations (Ex. 23:32; Deut. 7:2)

  1. Not to settle idolaters in our land (Ex. 23:33)
  2. To slay the inhabitants of a city that has become idolatrous and burn

That city (Deut. 13:16-17)

  1. Not to rebuild a city that has been led astray to idolatry (Deut.13:17)
  2. Not to make use of the property of city that has been so led astray

(Deut. 13:18)

Now that you have read please give me comments of things you didn’t know were in the laws, or any comment on the idolatry above.

Thoughts of Psalm 147: 1-20

YHWH understands us and heals our broken hearts. We should tell him Thank you every day- even during our battles. We have to put our hope in YHWH nothing else. We will find peace with Him. He will protect us from the enemy and any seen or unseen forces. Praise God for what he has done for you through his son Yeshua.

Thoughts of Proverbs 18: 4-5

Choose your words wisely and seek the counsel of those wise in the ways of the word, and Lord. We should be careful to be fair and just and to punish those to need to be punished for their crimes and free those that are falsely accused. The judicial system should never be taken lightly.

 

 

June 28, 2015

2 Kings 13: 1-14: 29

Continuing the sins of those before you=bad idea=God’s anger.

When we are feeling oppressed or needing help, pray for God’s help. He will provide someone to rescue you. Even if you have done things that are not okay with God, don’t let that stop you from praying.

God is merciful and loving. He always wants us to repent, turn back and depend on Him. You can see here that Jehoahaz son of Jehu was bad but when going got tough, he prayed for God’s help.

Problem was he when things settled he forgot about God. How soon we forget that God rescued, and we go back to their selfish ways, doing things that are detestable to God.

God cannot be just your 911 call or your “holiday” God. God wants our devotion, praise, heart’s every single day. He is more likely to act quickly on your behalf if you are striving to please him, if you are in constant communication.

Elisha, even on his death bed was giving godly counsel. We are to serve God and speak on his behalf, all the days of our lives, until we take our last breath.

Recently, a friend was in the hospital real sick, battling major complications from what was supposed to be routine day surgery. She sent a Facebook post that said, “Is there anyone I can pray for?” Here she was weak, suffering and very sick yet she was still doing God’s work and helping others. That is exactly what we are called to do, to be selfless soldiers for God until we take our last breath.

When God makes a promise he keeps it. We too should not go back on our promises. His promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, kept him from completely destroying the Israelites when they were so sinful.

Time and time again, we see that if we do not completely get rid of temptation of sin, then we will be led into ungodly living. Let’s say you want to stop smoking, if you keep a pack in the freezer (yes I’ve seen this before when someone was trying to quit) then if you get the urge, what might you do?

Well, when you’re opening up the freezer for your sugar fix ice cream sandwhich, you might just grab just a quick smoke, just one. What’s better than desert and a cig? Oh wait that’s the really OLD Shea- the bad college girl! Thank goodness she’s gone!

Temptation of all kinds must be destroyed and eliminated so that we will not be tempted to live ways that we know are not pleasing to God. They should have destroyed those pagan shrines completely and for good! Life would have been easier.

We are not punished corporally for the crimes or sins that are parents or children commit. We however need to watch to make sure that we are not enablers. We also need to make sure we are doing everything possible to raise our children to fear the Lord, know the word so that they won’t grow up with any wicked thoughts of actions. We do have influence, more than we know – in either a good way or a bad way. But each person is on an individual mission and is responsible for their own sin.

It’s sad when families destroy themselves, fight within. You see that the Israel family now has 2 kings who are fighting each other and destroying walls which protect and stealing the temples artifacts. This is so wrong. Anything divided against itself will not stand. Division in families, in countries – anywhere will end terribly. We are so much better united under the protection and laws of God.

These wayward Israelites are only still alive, a remnant remained because God is a gracious and loving God. Otherwise, God could have easily blotted their names out completely for disobedience.

We should never take God’s grace and love for granted. Just because YHWH sent his Son Yeshua to die for our sins, does not mean we can go on living the “old way” or our own way.

This also doesn’t mean that we can disregard the laws of God. Yeshua pointed to God, pointed to his laws, showed us how to live. I fear that too many so called Christians or those that claim to believe in God, take him for granted, make up excuses for their sinful living and do not follow the laws.

With true love for God, we want to know Him through his word, we want to live the way he tells us to live, not what society says. We must be extra careful not to take the Lord and his free gift for granted.

So many refuse to turn from their evil ways. So many refuse to repent and turn back to God. I fear that they are not taking the God of the Universe seriously. Analyze your life and really ask yourself each and every day, am I living the way God wants to me to live?

Daily growth in application: Am I responding to annoyances and irritations like a calm, cool and collective Christian? Or am I defensive, rude, angry, snappy?

As followers of Christ, we must train ourselves with each incident that comes up to respond like a big girl or big boy. Yes, you know who I’m talking too…Put on your Big Girl Panties!

Spiritual maturity means looking at the situation, taking a deep breath and thinking, “What is the most loving way I can respond to this without going off? Without starting a fight? Or is it necessary to say anything? Do I need to just walk away and pray?”

Challenge yourself to live out your beliefs and pursuit of God in all daily dealings even if anything.…

Consider it part of retraining yourself to be more like Yeshua. When you DON’T blow up, when you pass the test with flying colors, pat yourself on the back. You are starting feel different and you’re responding different because the virtues of God through the Holy Spirit are being applied and are active!

Thoughts of Acts 18: 23- 19: 12

When you witness to someone or become a mentor, it’s important to check on the growth of your baby fruits. Our walk with God is constant- sometimes we feel at war with ourselves, with others and with the world and with the word. When you become a Christian, you are still working on being “born again.” Birth is not easy. Killing that old self is not easy. It’s important to get the support of your Christian mentors or friends.

There is a clear difference between being baptized with water, repentance of sin and being baptized by the Holy Spirit. Apollos was a very dynamic speaker but his message was only half right. He was led to the right place where he could get the rest of the story, the good news about Yeshua, the son of God, being the Messiah. If we are to do ministry work, we need to make sure that we are right scripturally.

So many churches miss a few steps when baptizing. #1 some people must be spiritually washed by casting out demons first. You see this with Phillip’s ministry in Samaria. This step is largely missed. So many times those that have been baptize really wrestle with anger and things like addiction because something spiritually is holding them back. If you feel off or as if something is holding you back from the inner peace and advancement, find a couple of strong Holy Spirit believers to pray over you or cast out of you, even innocent children had demons in the bible times. It happens, and it is real. Free yourself of what has a grip on you.

The second thing that you don’t hear that much anymore during baptism is “Do you repent of your sins? “ God is looking for a humble heart, someone who knows how dirty they are and how dead they are without the blood of Christ.

The 3rd part is to be baptized with the Holy Spirit.

If you are witnessing to a non-believer or someone who thinks there is a God but is unsure of anything. Talking about repentance is a great starting point. A long time ago God spoke to me early in the morning and said, “It’s always been about repentance.”

That heart is key. That humble heart that repents before God is vital with salvation.

We should never be surprised at what God can do through people, but we should also be on guard because not everyone is what they appear to be. Just because someone can perform a miracle or even cast out in the name of Yeshua as Paul did, does not mean that their power is from God. They can be given that power by the devil to mislead.

We just have to make sure that their doctrine is solid and pray. The only way to know is to STUDY the word, research  and really wrestle with the word.

Because remember what Jesus said:

Matthew 24: 22“Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?23“And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.

Why would he mention lawlessness? Is he referring to those that said they were His, ” Christians” but failed to read and obey the law? Pray on it. I strongly suggest you really dig into the laws.

Matthew 24: 24 “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or ‘There He is,’ do not believe him. 24“For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect. 25“Behold, I have told you in advance.

So you see just because some can do great signs and wonders – means nothing!

If someone says that God’s laws in Old Testament are just for Jews or are old covenant; that is not scriptural. Read Jesus’s words he NEVER said that but said the opposite!

Matthew 5: 17

17Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18“For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.…

We as gentiles are grafted in- salvation through God’s son was given first to Jews first, then to us. So if we follow Yeshua’s example, if we follow Jesus, and if we love God, we will not practice lawlessness, but we will be law abiding. I suggest you google 613 Moses laws and read the ones that apply today.

If people say you are saved by grace without works, then that is not true. Your heart for God is shown by your obedience and righteousness. You aren’t saved by it, but it’s the proof of your faith of your belief and devotion of God. As stated in scriptural Faith without works is meaningless. See Jesus half-brother James comment below.

James 2: 17

Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. 18But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” 19You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.…

You will see here that I also believe this statement: YHWH (God) sent his son ( Yeshua) Jesus to be our Messiah. YHWH put everything under Yeshua’s authority. Yeshua sits at the right hand of God.

Thoughts of Psalm 146: 1-10

Do not put your confidence in powerful people or presidents!

Put your faith in God. Put your Hope in God.

The Lord heals, frees, feeds, loves.

Thoughts of Proverbs 18: 2-3

It’s foolish not to seek understanding and truth, even if you wrestle or it takes time to figure it out. If you are only concern with your own opinions, you’re missing out on so much. Listening is a valuable asset.

 

June 27, 2015

Thoughts of 2 Kings 10:32-12: 21

Seven years old is very young to be King. But he had a strong spiritual advisor; that led by example, influenced his life and put the word of God in his hands. It’s so important that we put the word of God in our kid’s hands at a very young age. Even if they don’t understand exactly what they are reading, we can start to lay a foundation of the Lord. You can teach them and explain more as they mature. Israel got in trouble because the word of God was not in their face. We all need daily reminders of what God expects from us and reminders of how much he loves us!

How quickly we fall away, start acting like fools and get stressed out when we are not in the word and when we hang with bad influencers.

They did a good job at demolishing alters, killing Baal priests. but they did not destroy the pagan shrines.

We must work effortlessly at removing all sin, distancing ourselves from people who pull us away from godly virtues. We need to surround ourselves with strong Christian influencers and role models. Anything that is tempting us to live sinfully or not of God-  must be removed.

It’s kind of like going on a diet but keeping your favorite chip, dip and dessert in the house. Or being in a committed relationship but you still look on your ex’s Facebook page. Or you have a drinking problem and you keep cold beer in the fridge at all times. You have a problem with porn, yet still keep the channels on your cable options.

We need reminders to keep us on the right track, to live righteously. So if you want to work out you might put your tennis shoes on the minute you get home, or put on your fit bit. If you want to remember to read your bible, carry it with you. Or keep your daily devotional on the night stand.

If you want to remember to pray for certain people, keep their names on a list in your bible or on your desk.

If we are trying to distance ourselves from someone who brings negativity into our lives, a reminder helps us to not engage. Maybe you could put a motivational bracelet on your arm, or a certain wall-paper on your phone.  Whatever or whoever who is contributing to a bad habit whether it’s anger episodes, drinking too much wine, cursing like a sailor or whatever…get rid of it.

Who we hang with good or bad, will influence us. It will either bring us toward God or away. But eliminating all temptation and sin is the key. Don’t be like this King, who didn’t finish the job and ended up being betrayed and killed by the evil influencers. If only he had destroyed the pagan shrines!

I’ve seen churches that get run down, real run down. It’s our job as a body of believers to care for the churches and temples. We not only need to care for our Pastors but also the place of worship. Our homes can also be places we gather together to praise, worship and fellowship together. We should also not let our houses get run down either. Taking care of what God has blessed you with is key. Joash realized the importance for caring for the Temple and for finding good faithful and trustworthy workers to do the job.

Thoughts of Acts 18: 1-22

You’ll notice that Paul was not a mooch. He worked and helped Aquila and Priscilla while he did his ministry work. We should never take advantage of someone’s kindness or make excuses for not pulling our weight. Being a hard worker, paying people back and contributing is a sign of good Godly character.

He also still honored the laws of God, Sabbath. The laws were not abolished by Yeshua. In fact, Jesus is the living word. He always pointed to YHWH and his laws. He did clarify for us that legalism should never take precedence over love. But he never said that the law of Moses were null and void. The truth of the Messiah was first given to the Jews. As Gentiles we are grafted into the Israelites tree. God gave them the word, the laws and the Messiah and because we have faith, they pertain to us too.

Paul used the Sabbath  gatherings as opportunity to teach the word of God and how Yeshua fulfilled the prophecy of the Messiah. (He used Old Testament as evidence). He did not waste time on non-believers though. He said what he needed to say. Some absorbed and some did not. We too must not take the rejection of the message personally, but move on and just pray for those who are lost. It’s hard but part of the sharing the gospel.

The Holy Spirit spoke to Paul in a vision and reassured him that Corinth would be the birth place of many believers. God too can lead us, plant us or give us direction. He can also give us confirmations when it’s time to move on.

I’m not sure what the vow was that he made and completed. But you’ll notice at the end of it, he shaved his head, marking the completion.

Being a Christian, does not mean you are on easy street. You can be mocked even by your own, just as Paul was mocked by fellow Jews.  Because even within our own sect of believers, there are different beliefs. As I have been in the word every day for over 2 years consistently, I’m amazed at how my views and insight has changed tremendously.

Much of which I was raised believing or I heard from the pulpit is being tossed out. When the bible says Jacob wrestled with God, we too wrestle with God over his word. It’s part of our refinement, and it’s how he opens our eyes to real truth, his truth, not as we see it, not as the world sees it, but how he sees it.

When you decide that you believe in YHWH, God of the Universe, and you decide to boldly state that you believe Yeshua is the Son of God sent to be our Messiah, then you will be opposed. But if you have YHWH by your side, the opposition should be taken as a badge of honor. In fact, if you aren’t getting some resistance or stones thrown, you should ask yourself- are you doing enough for God? Something is up if you aren’t getting  heat from some direction. Speak up for GOD!

The only way you will know the truth though, is to read the un-scrubbed word of God yourself, to pray on it and to really study the word. We must dig deep and analyze.

Don’t just believe what has been preached to you but really pay attention to the words you read. Many churches have taught false doctrine, even under the guise of Christianity or God. We should pay careful attention to different versions of the bible too. Because translations over the years can lose true meaning. This is baby steps, but praying to God to help you understand, really pleases him. He loves your pursuit of truth and obedience.

You must be prepared as the truth is revealed to you, you might feel like you’ve been fooled all these years. You may even feel sad that what you thought was okay or truth is a worldly or pagan lie. This is when you crank up on your prayers and ask God to help you. As you start to come into the light, others who you used to consider your own sect- Christians may not understand and will give you grief. This is very much the same as Paul experienced from his fellow Jews. He not only got verbal lashings but he also got rocks thrown, beat up and kicked out over his beliefs.

It’s okay because God loves you, and you will be rewarded for following the word of God that has been revealed to you.

Remember what Jesus said, “Luke 12:51-53

Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. For from now on in one house there will be five divided, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

Thoughts of Psalm 145: 1-21

Do you praise God every day? See the blessings even during the irritations and storms? Stop complaining and start praising.

We need to teach this generation the word of God. The word has become obsolete to so many in this country. Out of sight is out of mind. They are beating to their own destructive drum. We must proclaim God’s greatness to friends, families, strangers and the world. Thank God for how he has rescued you. God is our only hope. He is the provider of everything we need.

“The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, call who call on him in truth. He grants the desires of those who fear him, he hears their cries for help and rescues him them. The Lord protects all those who love him, but destroys the wicked. “

  1. The Word of God is Truth
  2. Those that fear him, want to be obedient and search for truth
  3. If you love him, you obey and serve.

Thoughts of Proverbs 18: 1

Unfriendly people care only about themselves, they lash out at common sense.

*Work at being super friendly, loving to others- even strangers. SMILE and engage.

You don’t want to miss an opportunity to show Jesus in you.

 

 

 

June 26, 2015

Thoughts of 2: Kings 9:14-10:31

Jezebel was a wicked Queen one who ruled and influenced with witchcraft, idolatry and malicious plots. In many ways, she influenced her weaker husband bringing the entire kingdom down.

Like an insane witch, she put on her make-up and did her hair, preparing herself for death. Like a Hollywood movie of an evil queen, I can see her in gown, painted up sitting in the window of the palace waiting with glaring eyes .

Just as the Lord said she had a terrible disturbing death and was mutilated by horses and dogs for her evil ways.

Then, just as disturbing Jehu, just after her death, went and ate and drank in the palace. How on earth you could someone mutilate someone like that trampling on them with horses, then eat? For those that say the bible is boring, has not read it. If people get entertainment from shows like Sons of Anarchy, they will read the bible like a dark thriller which is riddled with God’s warnings and truth.

I guess Jehu was celebrating the fact that he destroyed evil and helped YHWH complete the task. After he got his belly full, he decided to do the honorable thing and bury Jezebel properly, only to find just her skull, feet and hands.

Just as God had said, she had been eaten by dogs. Then, shortly after all of Ahab’s seventy sons were killed, followed by family and close advisors.

The eternal destination for all wicked people will be much worse than the earthly death of Jezebel. There is no death but a perpetual state of horrific torture by animal like beasts much worse than just a pack of dogs. Then, those in hell or the lake of fire,  will be ridiculed, mocked and dragged continuously and everlasting.

Just as we day dream about Heaven, and it’s beauty; we must realize that if we choose not to love God through obedience, if we choose not to believe in his son Yeshua to cover our sins, if we choose to go our own way, make up our own rules and follow this world, then our destination could be that of Jezebel in this life or next. Dark, yes. Real – very much. A healthy fear of God, will drive you to loving him in all things and will safeguard you from a living hell.

As we have seen like Father, like Son. It is rare and special when a son or a daughter follows God rather than the wicked ways of those before them. It’s a battle to fight the worldly influences around you and do what is right in God’s eyes. It’s not easy, but we will be rewarded in this life or the next for siding with God.

Jehu lied to get all Baal worshippers together. They made sure that not one who worshipped the Lord was there. They killed every Baal worshiper, destroyed the sacred pillar, and wrecked the temple. They made the temple a public restroom.  Now that is a statement!

Now why would Jehu not destroy those golden cows, and finish the job? He went so far,  yet didn’t finish the job. He came to the finish line, and decided to not destroy the cows? Why? Was it because they were gold? Out of greed? Not sure!

We must be all in – completely with God. That would be like following God all year but once a year for fun, we go on a mediation retreat of yoga and pagan rituals. So just to be with my friends, under the guise of inner peace, we follow practices of false gods.  This would be the similar to not destroying the cows. We must be all in and never allow any pagan practices or influences in our life.

His generation had limited success due to him not finishing the job. Only four more generations would sit on the thrown. So moral- follow through completely when it comes to God.

Thoughts of Acts 17: 1-34

We see Paul and Silas going to the synagogue on the Sabbath. So he has not abandoned the laws of God in his walk with Christ. He uses his church going as an opportunity to share the truth of the Messiah which had come, Yeshua.

Jason, a fellow believer, who opened his home to Paul and Silas suffered too for believing. But this is all part of your walk with Christ. This world has fallen under the spell of the enemy, and it is the faithful ones that will reach the promise land, paradise with Yeshua and YHWH.

Just as the scripture says below, Paul moved on to another city to share the news.

Matthew 10: 21“Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. 22“You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved. 23“But whenever they persecute you in one city, flee to the next; for truly I say to you, you will not finish going through the cities of Israel until the Son of Man comes.…

Some that we share with will be open minded and some will not. When we see things that are clearly against God, like the idolatry Paul saw. We must educate people using the bible the living word as a reference. We must first find common ground with those willing to discuss ideas, just as Paul found common ground.

We can’t just come in and attack or argue. But we must find common ground first. This disarms the walls and opens the heart to hearing the word.

God has overlooked, or delayed judgment for our idolatrous ways, but as Paul stated, “ he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.”

Yeshua, was the first to be resurrected completely overcoming death.  God picked him to be the final sacrifice, the one that conquered eternal death for all of us. Yeshua came to reconcile us with God, to be the living word and to give us an example on how to live and how to interpret the word.  He is the opposite of Adam who allowed sin and death to enter the world. Could it be in our life time that he returns? Aren’t we suppose to be ready at all times, waiting? Could we be the generation where the anti-Christ is revealed? Wrapping your mind around this idea is overwhelming but at the same time there is something so comforting about knowing that Yeshua will put all our pain to bed, all our suffering will stop and the madness and immorality of this world will end. So yes, we must suffer much before his return, but these things must happen so that prophecy will be fulfilled. So keep your eyes on the prize, a life with God.

God is everywhere. We cannot contain God in a temple or in an object. You can pray to him wherever you go.

When you share the good news with others about God and his son Yeshua, it’s like casting a net for the Lord.

God has told me a long time ago, I will speak through you. Your writing and your talks and your videos will be the net I use to bring in the fish, but I YHWH will bring in who I want to bring in.

YHWH choose hearts that are ready to receive, to hear and to believe. It’s not everyone. It’s just the fish that the Holy Spirit reels in. We must not be discouraged when some, even our family is numb. We are all on an individual journey. Our job is to share; YHWH’s job is to penetrate hearts. Just keep praying for the lost souls.

Thoughts of Psalm 144: 1-15

When the world gets dark, and we feel under attack, we must praise the Lord for loving us and protecting us the way he does. Why are we to be anxious or worried about what a mere man will do to us when we have God by our side? God is mighty, powerful and loving. He will bless and protect those who love him. Keep your hearts joyful even if things seem bleak. Keep your eyes focused on the eternal promise of peace with God.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 27-28

Few words= wisdom (don’t talk too much or tire people out with too much talking or talking in circles) . This includes too much writing in text or emails when you are trying to get your point across. STOP talking and writing! Silence says more than talking, talking, talking and writing, writing, writing. When we start babbling, men and people stop hearing. Less is more!

When you have godly wisdom, you have an even temper- not a hot head or someone who goes off.

It’s so true that even fools are thought to be wise when they keep their mouth shut! We all need to think before we speak or sleep on it before we add our 2 cents. Sometimes it’s better to not talk at all. We need to practice self-control.

June 25, 2015

Thoughts of 2 Kings 8: 1-9: 13

God’s timing is perfect. What are the odds that the king was talking about the boy that Elisha raised from the dead and at that very moment the woman and child were coming to ask for their house and land back?

Some call that a ka winky dink, but these coincidences are God in action. His timing is just one way he cares for His people.   If she had gone to the King on a different day, perhaps he would not have received her well.

God connects people, he times things so perfectly that even the biggest of sceptics raise an eyebrow and say something, like “cool or weird.” It’s not by chance, it’s not a kawinkydink; it’s GOD!

Bottom line is that if you aren’t totally for God, you are against God. When we hang out with people who are not with God, it will jump on you. If your friends curse like a sailor, drink all the time, bad mouth others, dog on their spouses, it will bring you down and worse pull you away from the fullness and blessings of God. You can see that these Kings often married non-believers with detestable practices, and they followed the bad habits of their parents before them. We must be very careful on the company we keep and the bad habits we pick up.  Remember, birds of a feather flock together and if you lay with dogs you will get fleas. Soon we will justify our behaviors and quickly we will find ourselves uneasy, anxious, depressed, living outside of God’s will and feeling unsettled due to our disconnection from God.

Scripture makes it very clear that those who are half-hearted followers or worse, are not blessed. They don’t live a long time, they get sick, someone kills them or knocks them off their thrown. It is a much easier road to obey God, to stay in the word. Many of these Kings did not read the word of God anymore. Out of sight, is out of mind, and they let the “world” around them influence them, pull them into false doctrine or bad living.

We too must stay close to the word, surround ourselves with good influencers, and saturate ourselves with the good and godly. We must distance ourselves from those that negative, argumentative, the hypocritical and those that do not believe. The word is your nourishment, if you want to feel “off” stop reading and praying. In a week, you will feel the difference- I guarantee it!

The company you keep, the immediate influencers which are your closest friends and family will either pull you towards God or away. You want to be on a winning team, so hang with people who put God first. If anything or anybody is keeping you from inner joy or feeling the fullness of God, consider removing the stumbling block. Your goal is inner joy through obedience and complete dependence on God.

Thoughts of Act 16:16-40

I’ve talked about this before, just because a psychic says comforting or accurate information, does not mean the source of her information is God. The slave girl was saying the right things. She was saying that these men were servants of God. But the source of her information was a demon that lived inside her. Paul casted out of the girl and this infuriated her owner who was making money off her psychic skills.

We are never to go to psychics or anyone who calls on the dead. If we are worried, or want answers, we are to pray to God, that’s it. Just because they know something they shouldn’t know does not mean they are from God or that they are getting their info from a good source. The enemy uses whatever he can, to pull you from relying on God. He loves the 1 800 psychic hotlines. Remember, the friend you should call is YHWH! We have but one mediator; that is Yeshua.

If you depend on anything more than God, you are opening yourself up to a spiritual attack.

God can use the worst of situation as opportunities to minister or save people. Paul’s jail experience and the earthquake, caused a witnessing opportunity with not just the jailer but also his family.

I can’t help but think about how the Lord used my  sickness with allergies to meet Jess. The big joke was that she was injecting me with poisons so that I would build up a resistance and  I injected the anti-venom into her, God’s truth.

I believe that God used my sickness, so I could meet Jess or “go get her” as I like to say.   I have thanked God many times for my allergies because if I had not have met her, things could have been much different. So my sickness was just a tool, he used for me to share His love with her. We are so much further down the road in understanding and godly wisdom now, it’s crazy cool!

When you are going through something, look for opportunities to see God and to serve God in those situations. I would have 1,000 sinus infections if I thought that I could help serve the Lord and bring one soul into the kingdom.

You’ll notice that Paul despite being tired from being jailed, was still using his brain. He saved a life. Didn’t run. He thought things out and considered potential risks, including using his citizenship as a tool.

Thoughts of Psalm 143: 1-12

We are not promised a perfect life without enemies or hardship. But what we know is that God loves those who love him. When you are depressed, hurting, struggling, if you have a connection to the Lord, he will hear your cries, and he will answer you, calm you or strengthen you. The answers may not come when you want or as fast as you like, but God listens and helps his special ones. He will help you endure the pain, and get through.

Thoughts of Proverbs 27: 26

We are in times when godly people are punished for being good. People are more concerned with looking “cool” than standing up for godly beliefs. We need to be the voice of God; we need to boldly stand up for scripture, righteousness and morality. You can love the sinner but not the sin.

People these days only want to hear things that tickle their ears or what they think will be acceptable to popular belief. But the truth will set you free. The truth is in the bible. But youth and society these days do not read the word of God. So they are making decisions based on morals and standards that man has created in his own mind. They are making up what they think God might accept or think is okay based on today’s standards or worldly view rather than word views. If you want to know what God thinks or get an idea, read the written laws given by God to Moses. God does not change. This does not mean we don’t lead with love. We can still love but still live our life based on biblical principles and truths.

We need leaders in America that stand up for God. We need to put God back as the Commander and Chief. We need leaders who read the bible, who know the bible. Because to know the bible is to know God. To be against God, is a dangerous thing. When a country is riddled with moral decay, then God’s judgment and punishment is just around the corner. This is Frightening to say the least. We’ve read enough, to know that America is treading in dangerous waters. You can see that many suffered for the sins of others when the Babylonians took the Israelites captive. Not everyone was participating in the detestable pagan practices, yet everyone suffered for Israel’s sin. Sin effects everyone, even the ones that trying to do right. This is why America’s moral decay should send warning chills down your spine. ( divorce,  porn, violence, corruption, abortions, to sexual promiscuity, foul language, lack of respect for authority and the list goes on)

We need leaders who are honest and who will not be condemned for being “truth tellers.” We need someone who is pro God in everything and not afraid to yell it from the roof tops! The only way this country will turn around and be prosperous and protected is to use God’s standards as the standard. Our country was founded on that truth and has lost it.

 

June 24, 2015

2 Kings 6: 1-7: 20

We should always take care of the things we borrow, even better than our own property. If we break, lose or damage the borrowed object, we should do everything possible to replace it or properly repair it. We can see that Elisha had amazing powers given to him by God, he could make poisonous stew edible and make sunken objects float to the top, not to mention that he could raise people from dead.

God through people, prophets, dreams, visions and angels, often warns his children. He used the Prophet Elisha to warn the king of Israel. The question is do you listen? Do you take action based on the warning? Or do you disregard and move forward doing what you think is best? Often when we fail to heed warnings or if we disregard confirmations, we end up paying for it in some form or fashion.

As we get calmer in our walk, more peaceful in life, we are better listeners, and we also see the value in putting our own immediate needs and wants on the back burner, because we know God has our best interest at heart. How many times in your life do you wish you had of listened to the warning? The red flag? How many times should you have ran in the other direction? Hold your horses, listen to God, be patient. He warns for a reason.

The King of Aram sent an army to stop the prophet Elisha, but Elisha was not afraid. Elisha’s servant was scared, but he opened the young man’s eyes.  The servant could see that God had sent troops and chariots of fire to defend Elisha. How amazing would it be if we too could see the angels, warriors that sent to fight our battles. We would be far less scared if we could see God’s forces.

Elisha prayed and the Lord soon struck the Aram army with blindness. Elisha then led the army out to the city of Samaria. Yet, when given the chance did Elisha give the orders for all the soldiers to be killed? No. He had mercy on the vulnerable soldiers, even telling the king of Israel to give the enemy food and water. The king fed them and sent them back to King of Aram. The troops then stayed away from Israel. We too should have mercy and show kindness to our enemies or others who seem to want to bring us down. Love and caring for others, treating others nicely. We should love the unlovable, who knows it could change their heart.  The next times someone is nasty to you or mean, try pouring kindness out over them or praying for them.  You will get more credit for being nice to those that are mean than you will get credit for being nice to those that are nice to you.

When things go from bad to worse, especially when people’s basic necessities are in jeopardy, the worst comes out of people. First, people turn on each other. Can you imagine how bad it was for people to eat their own sons?

That tells you how spiritually corrupt this nation had become and how deep the evil pagan influences had embedded into their hearts. Sick.

We should always be prepared for hard times by preparing ourselves spiritually and physically.  The spiritual part is worked in prayer, reading word, repentance and obedience. The physical part can be worked by staying physically fit , and it does not hurt to have a “go bag” together with supplies like food, water, medical supplies and fishing hooks with string.  You should consider having a safe place, outside the city  to that has a good water source.

We are so blessed and take so much for granted, including our freedom to buy the necessities of life we need. In a blink of an eye, this could change and we could find ourselves living similarly to how our ancestors lived on the plains of Texas with no AC, trading others for food and supplies.  We could easily find ourselves working the land with our bare hands.

Be sure to thank God for everything you have at access to. Do not take any for granted. Famine and war, can bring out the animal in people just as it did in these biblical times. So preparation or “just in case” is a good idea. But more importantly having gratitude for the air conditioner,  the roof over your head, clean and abundant water, electricity,  medicine is key. These are luxuries we have in America. God is a loving, giving God. He loves an appreciative heart. How often do we not appreciate these luxuries, until they are taken from us. You can see that in times like these not even a king can help, but God can.

So the king blamed Elisha for the bad situation, which was silly. We should never blame anyone, but always turn to God for help. Elisha promised food and drink in the worst of famine times and the king did not believe him. But God is a good Go, and he delivered once again. God has the power to confuse forces,  to provide supplies, to bring people back to life and to defeat any force despite the size.  God is fully capable of doing anything he wants. He is more likely to help those who love him. He also does not reward those that doubt his power. We must fight any doubt and believe in the power of God almighty.

Thoughts Acts 15: 36-16: 15

When you minister to young believers, it’s always a good idea to check on them to see how they are doing on their journey to God. It’s important to follow through on all promises or projects and not to bail out to soon. But it is also important to give people second chances and to be an encourager not a destroyer. People are not perfect and often young people will make mistakes, but we must use their youthful mistakes as opportunities to teach them and mold them.

I think Paul in some ways was wrong and  in some ways right. We do need to be careful not to partner with people who will hold back God’s work. But at the same time we should control our anger and have patience with people.  We should help mold people into becoming vessels  that God can use for his work. We can see that Paul’s personality even though he has changed much, seeps in from time to time, and he is a fire starter or ignites mobs etc. We must fight the ugly in our personalities and work effortlessly to get rid of the gossip, the bad habits, the greed, selfishness, vanity, anger, rage, judgment, the foul mouth and the list goes on. We must work everyday at purification.

If Jewish law was not important and should not be followed, then why would Paul insist on having young Timothy circumcised? We should as teachers, preachers and those commissioned by God to share the good news, should lead by example. We do not need top pressure people to obey, but lead them to the word.  It’s their choice if they want to obey out of love for God. But as Christians we  should definitely live according to God’s commands and laws, leading by example in all things.

The spirit of the Lord, will guide you and redirect you. You just have to pray and be open to listening. More importantly, you must be ready to not just listen, but obey the “God gut.”

They still followed the Sabbath rules, the Sabbath is a God’s law and was important to God from the beginning, as it was noted in Genesis even before the laws were given to Moses. Paul knew that people gathered together in prayer on the Sabbath, and these gatherings were good opportunities to share the good news of God’s son, the promised Messiah, Yeshua.

The Lord opened Lydia’s heart, and she was baptized. Then, she opened her home to Paul, Silas and Timothy. God has the power to open the right hearts to receive the message. Is your heart fully open to God? Keep pursuing God, reading bible, praying, repenting and turning back in obedience. If you pursue light instead of darkness, you will make your way fully to God’s arms. Keep growing baby fruits.

Thoughts of Psalm 142: 1-7

People are not your refuge, things are not your refuge, God is your refuge.

Complain to God, call out to him in prayer. He will hear your cries.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 24-25

Keep your eyes focused on logical, wise things. Emotional responses and emotion in general will cause you to think and do foolish things. Use common sense in all situations. Keep your eyes on God and not on foolish talk, foolish people or foolish things.

 

 

June 23, 2015

Thoughts of 2 Kings 4: 18-5: 27

God may bless you, but that does not mean your life will be grief or trouble free. But through the trials of our life, we must have faith and keep faith, especially in the worst of times. The woman of Shunem, who had been childless, received a child as a gift from God for her kindness.

But when the child was a little older his head began to hurt and he died. So what was the woman’s response? Did she break down? Freak out? No, she calmly pursued the man of God, with faith she went out looking for Elisha. Not only that but she confidently said, “It will be alright.”

How many of us if our child stopped breathing would have that kind of faith and calmness under pressure? Can you imagine how you would react if you waited your entire life for a child, then you lose him soon after?

She had bold faith believing in her heart that it would be okay, and it was okay. Elisha was able to bring the child back to life through prayer and faith in God.

Elisha’s story of feeding one hundred with very little bread supplies and having left overs is very similar to when Jesus fed 5,000 with a bread and a few fish. Elisha’s servant doubted, just as Jesus’s disciples doubted. We should never doubt the power of God. We should have belief in the unbelievable, because we know that God is God. God is the powerful creator, the giver and taker of life. With God all things are possible. We should never forget that. Doubt should not be part of our vocabulary when we have God as the head of our life.

Naaman did not believe such a simple thing as washing himself 7 times in the Jordan river would clear the leprosy. He expected some elaborate ceremonial presentation. God does not need a huge ceremonial presentation to heal someone. Prayer is powerful and when a Godly person prays over you or for you, amazing things can happen.

Luckily, Naaman’s group had more faith that he did and persuaded him obey the man of God. His skin was renewed to childlike skin. But Elisha would not accept payment, because he knew that it was God who did the work. If he took payment for doing God’s miracles, somehow that would cheapen or take the glory away from God.

But Elisha’s servant’s sinful nature caused him to deceive and take advantage and steal from Naaman under the guise that Elisha wanted the treasures. ( this was a lie) Elisha in spirit form saw the deceitful transaction. Gehazi, and his descendants were punished with the Naaman’s leprosy.

We must fight greed and our sinful natures. God sees everything, nothing goes unnoticed or unpunished, in this life or next. God is a loving God who loves to reward those who work at pleasing and obeying him. But we must remember that what comes around goes around, and what we reap we sow. We better be planting good, doing good and fighting our sinful natures.

Thoughts Acts 15: 1-35

With new believers, we must take baby steps. We do not want to overwhelm them. Baby believers are on milk so to speak and are not ready for a big old steak. We are all like fruit on a tree. Some of us are just flowers. Some of us are small pieces of fruit and some of us are ripe, ready to be picked.

As long as we are walking closer to God, pursing our faith and praying for wisdom and discernment, we will continue to grow and be obedient. But often it’s in stages. We should not burden baby believers but have patience and pray for them.

The most important thing is for new believers to eliminate things that tempt or pull them away from God. In this discussion, they wanted to first get rid of activities that would defile them or influence them into partaking in pagan practices which included sexual immorality and food given to idols. This discussion in no way means that they were nullifying the laws of Moses. But they were making a judgment on how to delicately handle the new converts. They would soon learn much in the Jewish temples from the Moses readings.

We must remember that God is concerned with our hearts, not legalistic rules. But we also must remember that our obedience to his word is how we show him we have a heart for him. Some did get circumcised, like Timothy; whose Father was a gentile. But Timothy felt called to do it for his ministry work. The key is to continue to strengthen your faith and if God is leading to a certain obedience that do that.

Thoughts of Psalm 141: 1-10

Oh boy do we need to hear this one: “Take control of what I say, O Lord, and guard my lips. Don’t let me drift towards evil or take part in acts of wickedness.”

That’s a good one for us to memorize. Then after we control our lips and our actions, we must ask the Lord to guard our thoughts, to wash them clean. Purifying our thoughts is just as important as actions. We are a work in progress, but the ultimate goals is to purify ourselves down to the thought. After all, we are our thoughts.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17:23

We know that many of our officials taken bribes from large corporation and special interest groups. Bribes in politics have perverted the entire political system in America.

 

 

June 22, 2015

Thoughts of 2 Kings 3: 1-4: 17

How merciful is God that he will answer prayers and direct us because of our association with someone in better light with the Lord. King Joram did a bunch of detestable pagan things and prayed to false gods. If it had not been for the King of Judah whom he was going to war with, Elisha would not have consulted the Lord for them.

Here we see the power of harp music again. You might remember that King Saul drove out tormenting spirits with harp music. Here we see that harp music made the power of the Lord come on Elisha. If you are feeling depressed, spiritually attacked, unable to sleep, anxious or mad, download some harp music or get on Pandora and listen.

The day after I prayed over someone who was clearly under darkness, I played harp music all day in my house. There is something very healing about harp music. If a spouse or if children are wound up, play some harp music. They may think you’ve lost your mind by playing harp, but soon everyone will be calm. It has such a calm effect. The day I played it all day at my house, I thought I was going to fall asleep on my laptop.

God does answer prayers, and he is merciful to even those who half-heartedly follow the rules, but wouldn’t it be better to really work at following through with obedience instead of obeying half the time.

You are now seeing the detestable practices of sacrificing children. The King of Moab took his oldest son and sacrificed him as a burnt offering on the wall. Sacrificing children is a detestable practice that outrages God.

Since 1973 with Roe Vs Wade the United States has sacrificed 58,041,011 million babies. Worldwide to date there have been 1.3 billion abortions since 1980. The bible is very clear on God’s feelings, anger and rage with pagan practices, which include sacrificing children and disgusting sexual rituals which includes incestual relationship and same sex practices.

The wrath of God is delayed. In fact Satan himself has been held back, from fully unleashing his evil. The only thing at this point that will stop Satan from being unleashed or delaying it, is complete repentance and turning back to God. The reality is that the United States and the world are so far removed from morality and true obedience from God, that I believe we are in a time where it is game on. At any moment, the restrainer will stop restraining.

And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, (2 Thessalonians 2:6-8)

We as Christians must stay very close to God in obedience, prayer and sharing the word of God. The climate of the world will go from bad to worse. But our eyes are fixed on the eternal promise of peace with the Lord. Many sweet apostles lost their lives for their beliefs. John the Baptist whom Jesus loved was beheaded.

Your physical life may end and will end at some point, but your eternal life is wrapped in your devotion and allegiance to God through his only begotten son. There is no time to toy around with this idea. At this point, we need to be all in. There is no looking back, and we need to be boldly sharing right now! We are in a season that is much different than anything that has ever happened before. We must be all in and in constant prayer with God.

We have all disobeyed one or more of the laws given to Moses. After looking at those laws punishable by death, I realize how in God’s eyes my sin, warrants eternal death. I’m so thankful to YHWH for sending Yeshua to die for my sins, to reunite me with my Father in Heaven. But we must repent and turn to God in all things. We must not carry guilt over our past mistakes, but we must  humbly repent to our Father.

We must dive into the scriptures and not brush them off but really ponder and ask ourselves, “Am I really trying to follow them?” If you knowingly disobey, if you are justifying behavior because it is not convenient,  then you are making a conscious decision to sin.

So ask yourself if you are consciously deciding to disregard a law, maybe even one of the Ten Commandments, are you really loving God the way you claim? Is this hard? Will it take sacrifices? Yes. But is it worth it to please the one who holds the key to your eternal life.

We cannot turn our backs on widows, the poor or the sick. God has always really pressed on our hearts in scripture to care for the weak and oppressed. I love the olive oil story! Look for people to serve.

God pays us back for our good deeds our heart for others. The wealthy woman opened up her home to Elisha when he was traveling through. God blessed her with a son because of her hospitality to Elisha.

Thoughts of Acts 14: 8- 28

God allowed miracles to happen to bring people to him. But we see that these miracles did not have that effect in the corrupt hearts of the Greeks. They immediately started worshipping Paul and calling him a “human god.” They brought in bulls and wreaths, which were part of pagan practices and were going to sacrifice to Paul and Barnabas.

They were so wrapped into their culture of pagan beliefs and rituals, that they were blinded from hearing the truth. We see this today an immersion of pagan rituals with Christian beliefs. These bad practices and thoughts, are now woven into how modern day Christians practice,  believe and worship. This is not right. That is why we must pay careful attention as we read the bible so that we can see how so many have mislead all of us.

Paul ripped his clothes in sadness over this. He told them that they were JUST humans! Not something to worship, pray to, sacrifice too. So you can see once again that we are not to worship any of the disciples, apostles or saints ( which means believers). Exodus 20: 24 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.

So if today you see a statue where people pray or kiss the feet of a stone statue of an apostle, this is idolatry and forbidden by God. We are only to worship the one true God of the Universe. There is but one mediator, one Son that has been given authority. All of these other servants were just human, not deities and should not be worship or idolized. We should not pray to them, put beads on statues, light a candle under a statue. We should not worship the way the pagans did.

Deuteronomy 12:4 You must not worship the LORD your God in their way

We too must be very careful that we do not worship God in a way that ties in pagan practices. I am currently investigating, researching. What I do know is that there are 7 festivals that are commanded by God to keep.

Here are the ones for the rest of the year:

  • Feast of Trumpets:  September 14-15
  • Day of Atonement: September 23-24
  • Feast of Tabernacles/Shelters/Harvest: Sept. 29 – Oct. 5
  • The Eighth Day: October 5-6

Thoughts of Psalm 140: 1-3

We need to pray for this country and pray every day for God to protect us from things seen and unseen. We should not miss a day praying over our children.

Here is a prayer that you should pray before you go to bed:

Dear Father in Heaven, thank you for loving me the way you do and for always protecting me. Please send 4 angels to my house tonight, one at each corner of my house, to keep guard over my house and my family. Do not allow any evil inside my house or near my family. I am praying for full protection from things seen or unseen. In Yeshua’s name, Amen.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17:22

Smile, laugh, enjoy the little things. Do things that will lift your spirits. Say “Hi” to people that you see in the grocery store or anywhere. Smile at people. It’s your job to bring light into you home and into the life of others. Our light within must shine brightly in this dark world. You should ramp up on your level of friendliness with all people. You must push through anything in your personality that is too serious because a “debbie downer” zaps energy. Stop living in the past, stop rehashing what people did to you way back when, or rehashing all the mistakes you made…stop being negative….YOU ARE BLESSED so BLESS OTHERS with SMILES and Good energy. It’s time to move forward in life with the Holy Spirit inside of you shining brightly to others. NO More frowns, No more complaining…No more outbursts ….No more negative or foul language. BE THE LIGHT in this dark world! I challenge you to be happy and joyful and friendly every day! Be more than you usually are….start conversations even if you are tired, it may be a witnessing opportunity. If you close yourself off, how can God use you? Not fully!

 

June 21, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Kings 22: 1-53

Elijah sounds a little bit like John the Baptist, a hairy man with a leather belt. Never judge a book by its cover!

We should never go to mediums or other gods for answers. It’s always best to go straight to the one true God, YHWH. Elijah told the truth about the king, he would die for praying to other gods. The King only wanted to hear good news and sent troops after Elijah to kill him.

I see this a lot of churches these days that only preach what people want to hear  for fear that they will lose half their congregations. They are not telling the entire truth. People are not studying the bible to truly figure out what God’s truly likes or dislikes.  God does not change. He likes what he likes and he abhors what he abhors. He does not change like we do.

If he says that not honoring your mother and father is punishable by death or homosexuality is death penalty or not honoring the Sabbath is death penalty – as all of these are written that way- then we must know that those sins are very serious- even more serious that stealing which is not a death punishment.  People disregard the old testament and the laws, but Jesus did not. God has not changed. Society has decided to interpret or modify God’s word so that it makes them feel good or approved. Or they quickly think that those laws were for the Jews or those laws are old covenant. This is not true. The only laws that were not needed anymore after Jesus ascended were the sacrificial laws and the temple duties surrounding that.

But God’s word is God’s word. This does not mean he doesn’t love us all. This does not mean we don’t need to love the sinner. But what it means is that we must measure what is right against God’s guidelines not societies norms. Very few know the word, follow the word or live by the word so very few are convicted on what God approves. I believe strongly that as a nation we have made very poor choices that go directly against scripture and that it will not be long before we feel God’s wrath in a big way. We as Christians must prepare our hearts with prayer, reading he word and witnessing to as many people as possible. As a Christian, I feel a stirring as others in the Spirit have also shared with me. We are in special times. We must also be prepared for anything to happen in this world. There are many things that are happening in September that have never all occurred before. My heart is stirring that something significant could happen in the world in that month. Be prepared  to have a place in the country  go with water that is not operated by electricity just in case.  This is just a feeling that many of us have and we must not leave in fear but be prepared with an emergency plan.

Read God’s laws, studying them because they  are huge indicators of what is okay and what is not.

God was obviously with Elijah because when they came to get him Elijah prayed for fire to destroy the 50 men. The king did not listen and foolishly sent another 50, only for them to get destroyed by fire again.

Then, on the third time, the captain humbled himself before Elijah, pleaded with him on bended knee for Elijah to spare their lives. The angel told Elijah to not be afraid of him and to go with him to see the king. The king died just as Elijah had said because he prayed to false gods.

  1. When you are hurting, pray out to Father of Abraham, Isaac—
  2. Do not put your trust in anything other than God- let him lead you.
  3. Do not insult or hurt pastors, prophets, preachers or godly people. They are protected. You’re messing with fire.

Elisha loved Elijah. All the prophets knew that Elijah would escape death and would be taken by chariot to heaven. His heart broke as he saw Elijah, his Father figure, his mentor torn away from him. But in that moment, Elisha received double portion of the sprit that gave Elijah power. We all have mentors in life and some that make a lasting impact, mentors that touched our hearts in a special way. When they are taken from us, or when life changes, we too might mourn them because of our love for them. But we must know that those died believing that YHWH sent Yeshua to be his son, the living word, to be the final sacrifice, then we know that we will indeed see our loved ones, our mentors again.

The prophets knew that Elisha had the spirit of Elijah. They bowed down to this special prophet, yet they were in denial of sorts on the whereabouts of Elijah. He told them they should not go look for Elijah. He knew what he saw. But those denying prophets just keep pestering and he finally agreed for them to go look.

He told them not to go, but that didn’t listen. There are always those that doubt the power of God, they can’t believe what just happened. They can’t wrap their minds around an event so they have to investigate, prove to themselves that what just happened was real. Seeing is not always believing. True faith and wisdom and understanding and acceptance, comes from God.

Boy do we learn a huge lesson on what the Lord thinks about BULLYING!

42 boys bullied God’s special servant mocking him, calling him “baldy.” Elisha cursed them in the name of the Lord and then bears came and mauled all 42 boys. The next time you hear of bullying or name calling at school or work, think about this story. Wow!

Thoughts of Acts 13: 42-14: 7

“ Chosen for eternal life became believers” – some hearts are hardened, some people just close their ears and eyes to the truth- But God does choose people, he nudges at your heart, he opens your eyes and ears because he knows the real you. The Holy Spirit has much say when pressing on someone’s heart to believe the truth and the word. The wicked or hardened are closed off and will not absorb the truth. You can pray that the Holy Spirit will move them towards God – that is your only hope. We have seen that praying for the lost and for the Holy Spirit to move them, works.

You’ll notice that Paul did not always mince words, I’m not sure his words to the Jew were loving, in fact I believe we can learn what not to do here by reading what Paul did. Paul incited a mob against him. We must be careful when we are ministering not to turn people completely away from God or to influence them to act ungodly. Yes, the truth sometimes stings, but love always rule. I believe he could have ministered to the Gentiles without burning bridges with his fellow Jews. This shows us that Paul still battled much of his old “personality.”

The miraculous signs were powerful tools God used to convert people. When he dusted off his sandals that was a visible sign that he was through with them, dismissing them. It would have been similar to flipping someone off in a way. He really was still provoking people. Remember, Jesus did not encourage violence or backlash- remember how he told Peter to settle down.

Paul’s personality and ways of which he spread the gospel really ignited the people, to the point of them wanting to stone him. I guess this is no different than what he did to poor Stephen. The people are going to do what they are going to do- even with peaceful Stephen. But we see that Stephen had a face of an angel and did not insult.

We must when we read Paul’s writings, remember the definition of an apostle is someone who was with Jesus from Baptism to Ascension, someone who walked with him through his ministry. Paul is not by definition a true apostle. We should always put more credence on the writing from true apostles and those that knew Yeshua personally. You will see throughout Paul’s writings, some of his old personality and arrogance. When you read his writings always when in doubt, weigh them against John or Peter and Jesus’s own words.

Thoughts of Psalm 139: 1-24

God knows you better than anyone knows you. He knows your insecurities, your fears, your hopes, your desires, he can see into that heart of yours and see the bad, the good and the ugly. God sees everything. We should make him our #1 priority, our first call when in distress or when in success….God is just a prayer away…talk to him. He has your back and he loves you so much…so love him though obedience and service. He saw you before you were born. Every day of your life, even those bad days where you lash out are recorded in his book- OUCH! Search my heart of God and test me. If there is anything inside of me that offends you, lead me along the path of everlasting life.

 

Thoughts of June 20, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Kings 22: 1-53

So the kings went to the prophets to find out if they should go to war with Ramoth-gilead. 400 prophets told them to go and be victorious. However, one of the prophets named Micaiah son of Imiah warned what would happen if King Jehoshaphat went into battle.  Micaiah spoke the truth; he did not tell the King only what he wanted to hear but he spoke the painful truth.

We all need friends who are “truth tellers.” We do not need people who just “tickle our ears,” telling us only what we want to hear. We need those people who love us enough to be real. We should not hate people either when they tell us things that sometimes stings.

We need to be able to take the criticism or suggestions or warnings to heart

When are these stupid Kings going to learn that they must abolish all the altars, temples and pagan shrines? They have to eliminate all of them.

When we leave the door open to sin in any area of our life, we will be tempted.  We need to get rid of all temptations so that we can walk closer to God. We know our weaknesses and what is tempting, we should get rid of them. If those shrines had been completely removed, people would have been less likely to partake in pagan detestable practices.

You can see that the people begged for King and that was not such a grand idea. Kings make a lot of dumb decisions, like the rest of us. It makes a lot more sense for God to be King over everything. Don’t ya think?

Thoughts of Acts 13: 16-41

Remember, if you stumble, repent of sins and turn back to God. Jesus ( Yeshua) fulfilled the prophets words and did not rot in the grave.

Jesus is God’s son.

“Through this man Jesus there is forgiveness for your sins. “ The law does not wipe your debt clean, but rather being obedient to the word and laws of Moses is the fruit, the way you show YHWH you love him. The law itself reveals sin so that you know what God expects from you. But Yeshua was the living word, here to show us how to live, how to please God, How to Obey the law.  Jesus is a man sent by God to live a sinless life to be the final sacrifice. For by one flawed man sin entered the world and  by the acceptance of grace of one sinless man Jesus, sin is wiped clean.

Thoughts of Psalm 138: 1-8

I love this part: The Lord will work out his plans for my life- for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don’t abandon me, for you made me.

What a lovely thought when you are feeling out of control or lost. God has a plan for you life, he is merciful, loving, and he will give you strength in the battles. Call out to him in prayer. Never stop praying, even when you feel out of control or feel like you can’t handle not one more thing.

We are often tested and refined during the stressful times. Will we call out to God? Or will we lose it?

Will we thank him for what he has done in our life, praise him through the storms? .. Or will we lose our minds, curse like a mad man, pop a pill, down a bottle of whiskey and call a friend to complain?

When your hope and your cope is God, when he is the chill pill you take, you have arrived. Life is not perfect, you are dealing with sinful people in a fallen world, at times you might feel like everyone including yourself is going  “cra cra” — But it’s during those challenging times, you must test yourself to see if you are indeed closer to God? How are you responding to stress and people? When you are about to pop a top,  you need to more doses of God.  Don’t pull away, pray. Pray like crazy, take a walk and talk to Him, let off some steam by talking to the Lord. God is the answer to whatever problem you face.  Don’t give up on him. He hasn’t given up on you.

Thoughts Proverbs 17:17-18

God has a way of bringing a loyal friend and helper at the perfect time. I love how people show up in our lives at just the perfect moment.

Don’t ever sign on someone’s loan – don’t be a co-signer. Don’t put up anything so a friend can get something. Great advice.

 

Thoughts of June 19, 2015

1 Kings 20: 21: 29

We should not boast over a victory that has not come yet; for YHWH has the final say!

When God shows his power through miracles, we know and are affirmed that he the only God of the Universe!

You can see that the enemy was already celebrating by drinking it up. When you are drunk, you are easily conquered. They won that battles but the Lord warned that the ones that escaped would be back in the spring time.

You can buy more equipment, strategize on a different place of attack, but if YHWH is against you, you will never win. They were greatly outnumbered but the two Israelite armies camped at different locations and God as commander, they killed 100,000 Aramean foot soldiers in one day. The rest God scared them away!

Ben-hadad humbled himself and essentially waved the white flag of surrender. The King of Israel  forgave. He did not keep rage in his heart, instead he took this as an opportunity to put the past in the past and make a new working relationship. We can have wars with people in our lives and make a decision to never look back and to agree to move forward in peace.

If a prophet, a man of God, tells you do something, even if it seems terrible as in the case of them asking for someone to hit them, do it. With the story about the prisoner, the moral of that story is that we must assist others and help others, do what is just and right. We should not point fingers or blame anyone, but help them when they are in a difficult spot. We should never turn our backs on doing what is right and just.

God had just helped the King in big ways, why is he not helping his fellow man? Because his heart is not pure.

Naboth refused to sell his land next to the palace. Ahab went home sulking and his firecracker of a wife Jezebel took matters into her own hands. Instead of pacifying him, and telling him it was okay; she put her husband down, basically calling him weak. Soon she devised a deceitful plan to falsely accuse Naboth and kill him. She set Naboth up so she could take that land! You can tell by her spirit who led her life, the devil!

We should not tear down our spouses, make them feel inadequate, little, stupid or belittle them. We must not tear down anyone, but build them up and encourage them. We should also point them to decision that would please God. We certainly should never scheme to get what we want in a creative way.

Ahab did not rebuke her actions but went down immediately and claimed the land.  He should have been appalled at what she did and prayed out to God for forgiveness on behalf of both of them. But when he went along with it, he had blood on his hands too. It was the same as if he had killed Naboth himself- wicked.

Elijah was sent to tell Ahab exactly what would happen to him for killing and robbing Naboth. Ahab would die on that land and dogs licked his blood! Nothing goes unnoticed by God. Every evil act will be punished. The prophet told Ahab that his entire family would be destroyed for their sins and how they led Israel into sin.

When he heard this, Ahab tore his clothes, fasted and humbled himself. Because he humbled himself before God, the Lord spared him but the punishment was passed down to his sons.

We all make mistakes, some very bad mistakes, but God loves us and is waiting for us to repent, humble ourselves and change. He is a merciful God. Repentance and turning back to God is key.

Thoughts of Acts 12: 24-13: 15

There are many false prophets out there. If you know the word of God, really study it, you will see that many false doctrines have made it into the mainstream churches. Test everything against the word of God, let God guide you to truth. He will speak to your spirit and clarify.

This false prophet, named Bar-Jesus did not want the governor to believe in the message of truth from Paul, Barnabas and John Mark. I think largely this was because he did not want to lose power over the Governor, special privileges and so forth. The devil inside of him abhors truth and does not want someone to receive the truth. Believe me, if you are fighting your way out of darkness, armor yourself with God’s protection, because the enemy doesn’t want you to know the word of God or be free from control of the devil.

The false prophet was outside the word, was controlled by the devil. Paul rebuked the sorcerer, and he became blind. This miracle made the Governor a believer.

You’ll notice that the disciples are continuing to honor the Sabbath.

Acts 13:14-15, 42-44: “But when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and sat down. And after the reading of the Law and the Prophets, the rulers of the synagogue sent to them, saying, ‘Men and brethren, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, say on.'”

The Sabbath was not abolished with the death and resurrection of Christ. The laws were not abolished either. Yeshua is the living word. Obedience is the fruit, the love you show God for believing in Yeshua who was sent by YHWH. When you love God, you want to obey his laws. Part of the Sabbath was reading from the book of Moses.

Jesus says in Matthew 24: 20.

The Abomination of Desolation19“But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 20“But pray that your flight will not be in the winter, or on a Sabbath. 21“For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.…

Yeshua ( Jesus) intended us to keep the Sabbath until the end of times which are described above and keep it in the ways that scripture lays out.

Thoughts of Psalm 137: 1-9

You may be going through bleak times, feeling captive in your life by something, but God sees everything. He will get you out of this darkness, and he will avenge any mistreatment. Nobody can stop you from praying to God! Nobody! Talk to him, in good times and in times you feel confused or hopeless.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 16

If someone does not want to learn, is not open minded- don’t waste your breath or wallet on a fool. True wisdom comes from God, invest your time and money wisely.

 

Thoughts of June 18, 2015

1 Kings 19: 1-21

So old Queen Jezebel did not take the warnings, correct her ways, fear the True God; she rather denied God’s power and decided to kill Elijah. No smart Jeze!

Like all of us, Elijah was tired and sick of the craziness. He would, like Moses, rather die that deal with difficult people. Even prophets are human too. All of us can get to the point that we just want to quit, runaway. I think a few times I thought about catching a flight to Tahiti by myself. We all get fed up.

You’ll notice God did not correct him, rebuke him or raise his voice,  but he had compassion. He loved him by getting him so food and water, to prepare him for his journey. Sometimes helping people with their physical needs first is a good way to show love.

Elijah did not consult God on where he was supposed to go. He just hit the road. We should always consult God before making any big move or major journey.

But in his anguish and depression he headed to the most Holy place he knew,  Mt. Sinai to a cave. And God was like: What are you doing here? I have other plans for you Elijah, of which pertains to anointing new Kings!

Sometimes God is a small whisper to us that guides us, speaks to our heart about a next move. God’s presence was so overwhelmingly powerful that it caused huge winds, earthquakes and fire. But that was not God. God was a gentle voice, guiding him through the storms.

God loves us and he knows our hearts. He knew that Elijah was heart sick over all the disobedience, as YHWH was. They shared in that sentiment. When we have empathy for someone, when they are in a weak moment in their life, we should be careful with our words and be gentle in spirit with them when we guide, help or even correct.

When people are in the midst of depression or anxiety, we don’t want to use commanding voices, talk down to them but to show them physical love and kindly direct them. Our tones and inflections in our voices can be as disturbing as the words we use. Non-verbal cues even when it’s the right words, can send an anxious person over the edge. Even if you think someone is totally on the wrong course, or out in left field, or has unjustifiable fear or anxiety, handle them with the kind of love that YHWH handled his servant Elijah.

YHWH is merciful, always looking to spare as many as he can, looking for those who are obedient who have stayed true to ONE God, YHWH. His nature is to keep a remnant, or look for those that will have a heart for Him. He would love to save every last one of us. But we have free choice and some of us have hardened our hearts and have chosen to live by the world and for the world, rather than the word.

We need to go out in the world and teach others to do what we do, it’s the great commission to share the good news and God’s complete word. So that others will do the same and the body of believers will increase!

Elisha’s heart was ready to learn under Prophet Elijah. Elisha was willing to sacrifice a huge heard of Oxen in celebration for being chosen to go serve God. He did not hesitate to go, but in his actions to kiss his mom and dad, showed that he had a good heart. (Commandment #5, honor your mother and father) He also was very generous, sharing all the meat with his town. God knows our hearts. He knows us. The better the heart, the more God will use you for his purpose.

Thoughts of Acts 12: 1-23

John’s brother, James,  after Stephen was the next one to be martyred. Agrippa was more worried about getting approval from the Jewish people and crowds then doing the right thing. His feeling of popularity and approval, influenced him negatively and he arrested Peter. He had full intentions on killing Peter after Passover, but God had different plans for Peter.

Peter’s fellow believers prayed earnestly for Peter. Then, an angel of the Lord freed Peter from 16 soldiers guarding him. You can see sometimes Angels are a bit rough, he struck Peter on the side to awake him. Sometimes we need a wake up call and it’s not always a sweet angelic experience.

The angel gave him precise orders. Peter obeyed but was in a trance like state. He probably did not knowing if he was hallucinating, dreaming or having a vision. Peter came to his senses and realized God had sent the angels to free him. Amazing!

But then he went to John Mark’s mom’s house and the little girl who answered the door was in complete shock, so much that she forgot to open the door but just ran to announce he was there in excitement.  This made me laugh a little. I’ve been dingy like this before. I think we have all had those ding dong moments where we lose our head. Or moments we are in such disbelief we lose our minds.

But the believers inside were doubting, they thought it was an angel at the door. They were amazed and loud when they saw Peter! He quieted them and  when Peter said tell James and the other brothers, he was referring to Yeshua’s brother, the head of the Jerusalem church. ( remember John’s brother James just died)

Agrippa went nuts trying to figure out what happened, blamed soldiers and executed them.

There was a famine and the people got an appointment with Agrippa’s assistant. The people were kissing up to Herod so they could get food, and they screamed out to him, “It’s the voice of god, not of a man!”

Agrippa did not correct them. He probably smiled in his royal garb and took all the glory. Boy did he make a dreadful mistake, allowing the people to call him God or compare him to God. He was consumed with worms and died.  Yuck!

Note to self: Always point to God on all successes;  Never take credit or just say thank you. But thank the Lord for all your blessings and never hold yourself in too high esteem. If you think you are all that and a bag of chips, God could push you off your pedal stool. When your heart is filthy, you could run the risk of being eaten by dogs or worms or worse! Yuck.

Thoughts of Psalm 136: 1-26

Do we thank God enough? Do we give him credit enough? Do our prayers always start with giving thanks and praise? Or are we me, me, me people? Are we just making requests? We have a ton of things to be thankful for….God loves a thankful heart.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 14- 15

Stop a dispute before it starts.  This is easier said than done but such a wonderful goal. I was irritated this weekend about someone being irritated and moody . Instead of picking, poking, probing or  asking…”What is wrong?

Or saying, ” Snap out of it!” ; I simply put my ear buds in and listened to some sermons for a long car ride. Instead of focusing my mind on someone’s funk, I focused my time on learning the word of God. We should not focus on problems but on God’s promises to love us and help us out of them. If I had given my two cents, it would not have helped anything, but furthered the funk-I-fied mood.

There are a lot of innocent people put to death. There are a lot of crooked people who are false witnesses. God is a just God. He abhors when innocent people are accused or condemned. In this life or next, he will judge all. The guilty will not get off, the innocent’s injustice will be avenged.

 

Thoughts of June 17, 2015

1 Kings 18:1-46

You’ll notice that Obadiah, bowed down to Elijah and called him Lord. The definition of Lord is: someone or something having power, authority, or influence; a master or ruler.

Prophets were often treated this way.
The Spirit of the Lord can carry people away. You see Obadiah fearful that Elijah would be carried away, protected by God from King Ahab. Then, he would be killed for not delivering Elijah.

God can carry you out a situation miraculously or even send angels to break you out of jail. Nothing is too big for God. He can also give you the power to leave your body in Spirit and see things, as he did in Elisha’s case. You see another example of being “carried away” with Philip in New Testament after baptizing the eunuch; he was carried away by the Holy Spirit. You see this after the resurrection happening with Jesus, Yeshua appeared and reappeared by the power of Spirit of YHWH.

Acts 8:39-When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing.

When we refuse to obey the commands of the Lord, there will be trouble. This is a reoccurring theme in the Old Testament. So why do people today not study the laws to get a good idea of God’s personality- a clear understanding of the “dos and don’ts.” God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow.

To know God, we must dig deep into his commandments and laws the way Yeshua did. Some laws like the sacrificial laws were nullified with the final lamb- but there are many laws that make it very clear what is acceptable and not. You can get clarity on much from reading them. What society says is okay, is not always what God says is okay. Who do you want to please God or society? Do you want to fit into this world or God’s kingdom?

Foreign gods are powerless as you can see by the fire demonstration. One thing that stuck out this time while reading the bible was this verse: “They (pagans) cut themselves with knives and swords until the blood gushed out. “

When I read this line, I think back and remember people in my life that did what we call self-mutilation marks. I have a family member that cut her wrists, tiny marks over and over again around her wrists as a child, leaving scars.

Then, I think about those that slit their wrists out of despair.

The pagans did this out of despair too. They  do not have God or they are tormented by evil spirits,  their master or the one that has control over their  heart or mind is the evil one. When people purposely hurt themselves, they are under the power or control of the enemy.

We can protect our mind when we stay close to God, reading his word, obeying, repenting, praying and serving. When you disregard God, or go your own way, your allegiance by default is not to God but to the one that can capture your mind and make you act, think crazy. When you are under the spell and out of the protection of our Father in Heaven, then you do not reason and will resort to extreme measures as the pagan priests did.

You can see that their gods have no power. Even after this extreme demonstration of God’s power when Elijah’s soaking wet fire was consumed in an instant, not everyone was convinced or converted. Today there are people that even with miracles, do not have the right heart to receive the truth, as in the case of wicked Queen Jezebel.

God can give us extreme strength like he did Elijah. I’ve heard story after story of people who had extreme strength during major events. Some call this adrenaline but when you are doing God’s work, he can give you supersonic strength and speed. With God you can do things that you would not normally be able to do. God is a powerful force. We can tap into his strength in our daily lives by pursuing Him daily.

God is the only thing that can help us. He is the ONLY thing that can fill our spirits with inner joy despite this world or the sin of it. When we chase idols of the world or try to get a “fix” with buying something new or a new haircut or a new car or a trip, this is only a temporary fix. You will end up always chasing the next thing, searching for happiness…our pursuit to happiness, true inner joy is keenly wrapped in our pursuit and obedience to YHWH.

Have you ever felt sad or empty after buying something you thought would make you happy? Or after a big event or trip, ends? That is because those pursuits do not have long lasting impacts like the light of the Lord in your life.

Thoughts of Acts 11: 1-30

Following God is not always the popular thing. When you go against worldly “norms” or the “accepted” you will get resistance because as you obey God and his word, the enemy is not happy. If Peter got flack for preaching the gospel to gentiles from his peers, why would any of us expect to get fully embraced by everyone for our pursuit of God and god’s way? When you walk with God, you stand out in a dark world. Your light will shine. It will not always be easy, but you will be rewarded for your allegiance to YHWH and Yeshua.

You might wonder why I use the formal names now. Because the Holy Spirit has led me to using them, instead of butchered Greek translated version. Yeshua means YHWH saves us, meaning God saves us. I would not want someone butchering my name. If someone wanted to get my attention calling me by another name which is really not a close translation would not get my attention nor would it be as powerful.

So when I pray, I am practicing using these Powerful names. God’s ears open when he hears that we as children of God are using the correct names. This shows that we are in real pursuit of the truth on a journey for truth. We are like fruit, growing each day in our faith, getting a deeper understanding. I’m changing every day, being enlightened on things that I never imagined.

You will see that the vision for Peter happened 3 times. You will see that Elijah poured water on the fire 3 times. There is something in that number. It is much different to be baptized with water than with the Holy Spirit.

God has given gentiles the privilege of repenting of their sins and receiving eternal life. He did this through our Jewish brothers and sisters and through our Jewish Messiah. We are grafted into the tree, we as believers become Hebrew. So we must support Israel, pray for Israel and do what we can to love our Jewish friends, even if they do not believe that Yeshua is the Messiah.

I am so thankful to God for the Hebrew nation for giving me an opportunity to receive an eternal life with God. A true believer will embrace this idea and will not judge Jews or look down on them…but will apologize for all the world’s abuse to them, including torture under the guise of Christianity.

We should all be like Barnabas, we should encourage each other always and be as generous like him. Barnabas was friendly, solved conflict and never gave up on the mission or on individual people who were struggling. Be a Barnabas to others! Don’t cut them down but inspire them.

God will often warn us of things to come as he did in the drought and famine. I love that helping the poor in Jerusalem was laid on their heart. They trusted Paul and Barnabas to take their generous offerings back.

My family has been practicing keeping the true Shabbat ( Sabbath) ( On Saturday) and one of the fun things we do after a candle lighting prayer on Friday evening is that we have a box for the poor. Each of us puts in money. Slade put all his change from his wallet in last weekend, Braxton put in some money, I took from my purse and Steve opened his wallet. We put it in the box for the poor.

At the end of the month, we will go out into the community to see who God places on our hearts to give to. We should always give generously to the poor and those in need. The bible in Proverbs says when we give generously to the poor, we are actually lending to the Lord, and he will repay every good deed.

Practicing the Sabbath as God commanded is different and will take some time getting used to. But I can honestly say that I enjoyed cleaning my house and prepping all Saturday’s food on Friday. I felt happy as I cleaned the house, I felt like I was doing it for God.

Before sunset, all my food for Saturday was prepared and my house was spotless. At 8:20 before sunset, Braxton and I lit candles and we all prayed. Then, we did a  bible study, and then enjoyed some family games. I played checkers with Braxton and Steve played Battleship with Slade. It was fun not turning on the television and just having fun with each other.

Shabbat is supposed to be fun, relaxing and a day of complete rest. Why of all the commandments do we fight this one so much? Because we need rest! We do not fight any of the Ten Commandments like we do this one. We are learning…trying to figure out how to do it and enjoy it. It’s a process. Honoring the Sabbath the way God wants us to honor it was placed on my heart by God. I do not know when or how this even started but just something that waved over me…happened. I do pray every day for God to guide me. I’ve received confirmation after confirmation that this is indeed what he wants from me.

Thoughts Psalm 135: 1-21

Idols are worthless and powerless in our lives. The Lord is in control of everything in heaven and earth. We should praise his name with music and celebrate YHWH. His name will endure forever.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 12-13

Be careful not to confront people who are volatile. Never repay good with evil.

 

Thoughts of June 16, 2015

1 Kings 15: 25-17:24

Once again, we see that children immolate what they see and hear. In this case, these new Kings did what their Father’s did before them, they continued to sin against the Lord. But I think we can safely say that all exposure our children have will influence them. That means video games, music, television shows, movies, friends and family members.

We can’t completely shelter them, but remember Proverbs 22: 6 “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Part of training our children is teaching them the word of God.

Deuteronomy 6:7 says: 7You shall teach ( the word of God) them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. 8“You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.…

It angers the Lord when our actions or influences causes others to sin. We see again that idolatry, worshipping of other Gods infuriates the Lord- to the point that people die and are eaten by dogs.

God expects us to remove all idolatry from our lives. Idolatry in modern day can be not just Statues but anything that comes before God, like sports, our kids, work , our spouse, exercise, money and the list goes on.

He also expects us to be very careful when choosing a mate because that partner can pull us away from God by influencing us negatively. In the case of Jezebel, Ahab built temples to Baal and Asherah poles.  You can tell that she was strong willed, heartless and a ruthless woman.

We can see time and time again in the bible that men fold under pressure from demanding women. So Mom’s warn your boys!  So when choosing a spouse, we must choose someone who is not only equally yoked but also one that influences us in a positive way- lives righteously.

We cannot allow someone to become our Savior or take priority over God or God’s desires for our lives.

We should pray to God to help us not be like those who sinned before us. We should humble ourselves before God, exposing any and all weaknesses. You have the power to stop generational curses or habitual sinful behaviors. Rebuke it, repent, pray over it, get help, do whatever it takes to obey God. The buck stops here! Because I love God more than…ANYTHING!

When God tells you not to do something don’t do it! He is a God that warns, but he also means business. Why on earth would you try to rebuild Jericho, if you knew that God said your son was going to die if you did? DUMB! If you know God is telling you to do something or not do something- obey!

When we lack God, our lives have a spiritual drought. God is the living water that refreshes us and gives us SHALOM (peace)! Rain droughts are a sign that God is not happy. Rain can be a blessing. King Ahab’s detestable behavior involving idolatry and the advancement of that practice in his kingdom, caused the heavens to shut- a big drought and famine!

Elijah, a man of God, a prophet, was fed by ravens and drank from a brook. God protects his own and provided for Elijah during the trying times. Then, when the brook ran dry, God moved him to a widow’s home. She was poor and starving but generous and faithful. God took what little she had and miraculously multiplied it until rain came again. We should never worry about life’s necessities. When we are in need, just call out to God. He will provide.

Luke 12: 24: Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!

When her son became ill and died, Elijah cried out to the Lord, the widow doubted. Elijah prayed and stretched out over her son 3 times. Something significant about 3 in the bible! (Like Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). The child came back to life! This miracle confirmed that Elijah was truly a man of God.

God often uses miracles to show his power and his work. There are modern day miracles around us everywhere! When you hear them, please share! When you are in a crisis, or in the midst of a panic, call out to God and remember God has the power to heal and revive all parts of your life.

Please share miracle stories. They are great testimonial tools!

Thoughts of Acts 10: 24-48

Peter clearly stated when Cornelius fell at his feet and worshiped him, “Stand up! I’m a human being just like you! “

Peter would tear his shirt if he thought people today were praying to him, putting beads next to him, bowing down to him or even had a statue of him. Old Testament law forbids this!

We are not to talk to or pray to the dead, even an Apostle. You can see that Peter said he was just a human, a humble servant of God sharing the news of God’s son.

There is but one mediator between us and God; that is Jesus Christ. Do not pray to loved ones who have died, do not pray to Apostles (some call Saints, but saints are really by definition in the bible all believers) or anyone else for that matter. This means do not pray to angles or Mary either!

Now you can pray that Jesus or God would send angels to look out over you. But praying directly to angels is forbidden. Praying to any human, including Apostles or Mary is forbidden. Scripture has been twisted and added to.

If you want to obey God, then read the word for yourself, and do not participate in those detestable practices. Just because the world says or some in the world says it is right, it is NOT! It’s forbidden by Yahweh. Pagan practices and the practices of men, have become approved, but not approved by God. If you read the word of God and you disregard it, you will be held more accountable because you are following the world rather than the word.

Old Testament law state Exodus 20:4-5 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me,

Isaiah 8:19 and when they say to you, “Inquire of the mediums and the necromancers who chirp and mutter,” should not a people inquire of their God? Should they inquire of the dead on behalf of the living?

1 Timothy 2:5 for there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,

God revealed to Peter that God shows no favoritism and that the good news of Jesus the Messiah was for the gentiles too. Jesus was appointed by God to be in judge of all- the living and the dead. Everyone who believes in Jesus will be forgiven. But the fruit of our belief is our obedience to the word. So if we know the word of God and we choose not to obey it. We are making a conscious decision to sin. That means we will have to account for that.

I love that the Holy Spirit was poured out over the people just as they heard, even before they were baptized with water! Cornelius was a God fearing man, who gave generously to the poor. God knows people’s hearts and he chooses people as his own. Never doubt the power of the Holy Spirit to reach someone. When we give to the poor or care for people, God sees that, and he loves it!

Thoughts of Psalm 134: 1-3

Lift up holy hands in prayer and praise the Lord. Let’s pray that the Messiah returns and blesses us from Jerusalem!

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 9-11

Don’t dwell on faults, flaws or mistakes of others. Forgiveness is true love. We are commanded to love others by forgiving as God forgives us.

If you try to correct someone who has true wisdom, they will humbly take into consideration the guidance. But if you try to reason with a fool- forget it.

The evil in this world and the evil doers will be punished- all in God’s timing.

Thoughts of June 15, 2015

Thoughts on 1 Kings 14: 1-15: 24

Does anyone of us think we can fool God? Or disguise or hide our sins? Or even trick a blind prophet? Do you think you can avoid God’s punishment, judgment or wrath? Ah, we have another thing coming. God sees everything and he rules over everything. So it’s in our best interest to please him and not people. And whatever you do, do not disobey the 1st or 2nd commandment. Do not have any Gods before Him! Do not carve images or bow down to them! NO, NO, NO! The punishment for disobedience to these two commandments seems be more extreme and this seems to bring God to extreme anger more so than the other commandments. And if you are responsible for causing others to pull away from God or bow down to statue, watch out!  Even if you are on a “meditation retreat” it’s a slippery slope peeps. No bowing down. You are in even more trouble, because you are pulling people away from the God of the Universe.

All of his commandments are to be taken seriously. Take some time to memorize the Ten Commandments and really analyze are you obeying all of them?

The people of Judah did not do any better, they too built pagan shrines. Can you believe they built male and female shrines of PROSTITUTES? Oh boy! Sick! I can only imagine what kind of detestable pagan practices they did under those statues- sick sexual sin. The temple was no longer protected because it was not a Holy Place but a place that fostered disgusting pagan rituals. Ransacked! Treasures gone!

Children learn from their parents. You will see that sons follow the steps of their Fathers before them. Nothing changes. These kids continue to do what they watched and learned from their King Dads. Our kids too will imitate and repeat our behaviors! Yikes! Time to clean up our act and mouth!

If we drink too much, curse too much, if we are lazy, pay bills late, bad with finances, treat people badly, if we snap, if we go to psychics or put our faith in mystic, if we yell…guess what our kids will do..You got it they are little mirrors.  We must change and break  generational curses and habits. Our habit must be obeying and loving God. Let them mirror that!  Our best bet is to change and walk with God in all things now, so that our children will walk with God too in all things. It’s never too late to start! Repent and start over!

Finally a small ray of light with King Asa! He banished the prostitute statues and even denounced his grandmother as her position of queen mother because she had an obscene Asherah. He did not completely remove the shrines but he had a heart for God.  He should have abolished them. Bad boy.

We too must be willing to detach ourselves from family and friends if they practice these detestable practices. I know that seems harsh. But we should not be around anyone who might speak false truth, meditation type pagan practices into your heart. God must always come first and your loyalty to him. We have to protect our eyes, ears from anything that is false doctrine or that is clearly against his commandments. I’m not saying you can’t be kind or nice to people whose views are different but be very careful that nothing jumps on you. Birds of a feather flock together….and if you hang out with someone long enough some of their ideas, beliefs could jump on you and hurt your heart for God.

Thoughts of Acts 10: 1-23

Cornelius was a God fearing man. Did you notice that he was praying at three o’clock in the afternoon? This time has been coming up for me a lot lately. This is around the time that Yeshua (Jesus) died for us. I feel like there is a deep connection to that time, and that we should try to have a 3pm afternoon prayer time. You’ll notice that God sent visions and angels to both parties to confirm that he was indeed in this connection. They each received confirmation so that the barriers and judgments and rules associated with a Jew entering a gentile’s house would not stop God’s message and work. A rule should never be over teaching and preaching or heart/love issues.

God’s love, the message of God’s son is for everyone. We should not let anything keep us from sharing with them, without judgment and without hesitation. The vision Peter had was not really about food but more about God confirming to Peter that the Messiah is for Jews and gentiles. We are all God’s children. Some take this passage to believe that all of the God’s food laws in Old Testament are null and void. I believe we can eat those foods but we must also know that those foods are not as healthy for us as those foods that have the stamp of approval by God. If you really look at foods that are unclean- there are many reasons why it’s best to limit or avoid them all together.

Peter was bold and invited the men to stay the night. This shows us that he truly trusted and believed that God was in this connection.

Thoughts of Psalm 13: 3:1-3

Shouldn’t we all live together in Harmony? In peace and in Love? With all of the racial tension in this country right now and all the division on so many levels, I pray for God to unify us. We should love each other, be kind to each other and the hate needs to stop! This evil and hate for one another is breaking my heart. I can’t imagine how God is hurting seeing all this hate.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17:7-8

People in leadership roles should never lie, deceive or tell half- truths. The people will get fed up and turn on them. I’m not sure what to think about bribes. I’m assuming that bribing someone is wrong, you might have some success but you should not resort that. Now negotiating, sweeting the deal is an entirely different thing. We do want to think about others needs when negotiating. That kind of bribery can be a successful.

Thoughts June 14, 2015

Jerusalem is God’s city, and Judah is Jesus’s tribe. The promise was to David. So you’ll notice that the only tribe left to David’s ancestor was the tribe of Judah. Coincidence, I think not. Rehoboam, son of Solomon, was the king of the tribe of Judah. ( David’s line). Even though God separated the tribes, he did not want them fighting. This was part of his plan.

You’ll notice that Jeroboam made up his own festivals, his own shrines, gold cows, alters. He was so disobedient. He disregarded all the laws of God. I can’t help but think that, we too have made up our own celebrations and festivals that are not biblical. We have morphed what was pagan with Christianity in much the same way. They took elements of God’s festivals and practices and twisted them into pagan cult practices. This was not approved by God. Today, we see this same very thing thriving. There is always a thread of truth, but it is not as God laid out for us in the bible. That’s something to chew on for today.

The man of God spoke God’s truth into Jeroboam. He believed because he saw the cracks in the alter and  the King’s  hand was paralyzed and then not paralyzed. But Jeroboam did not correct after he was sternly warned. He kept on disobeying God. How is it that he can see the power of God and still disobey? I would say if God warns you, listen, repent and correct your bad behavior.

What we learn from the man of God is that if God tells you not to do something, then someone comes along and says it’s okay, who are you going to believe and obey? It better be God. Because metaphorically and literally, disobedience to God could end terribly. Even if you plug along doing God’s good work, if you fail to listen and obey,  you could be in a heap of trouble. Listen to God and OBEY what he says all the time! And Listen to God above anyone else- even if they are a Pastor, Prophet  anyone!  Even if the Pope tell you to do something, if you know it’s against the word of God  don’t DO IT!

Thoughts of Act 9: 26-43

Here we have Barnabas the encourager once again working his relationship magic. He convinced the apostles that Paul was indeed changed.  Really it was Paul’s actions that spoke louder than words. We can really tell how authentic someone is by their actions.

Paul proved is authenticity by risking his life. The Holy Spirit moved in big ways through all of these key players, and Paul brought a unique energy and convincing power because of his background.

Then we see Peter raising Tabitha from the dead. The Holy Spirit was working powerfully through Peter. We all have special gifts that God can use. Some are teachers, preachers, healers and some are just kind hearted givers like Tabitha. How can God use you?

Thoughts of Psalm 132: 1-18

David was promised by God that one of his descendants would be on the throne forever. God sent Yeshua ( Jesus) who is a descendant of David to fulfill that promise. One day Jesus will come back and establish that kingdom forever. Jerusalem has been chosen for that home. In Jerusalem, God will increase the power of the anointed one – who is (Jesus) Yeshua – who is the living word- the light that came into the world.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17:6

Grandparents love their grandbabies that is true. And parents should work on being the pride of their children. It’s all about loving each other in actions and words.

Thoughts June 13, 2015

1 Kings 11: 1-12:19

Our best alliance and most powerful alliance is with God. We must be careful not to hang with people who live in such a way or believe in such a way, that we would be pulled in a life that would be against God’s commands. Solomon’s desire to have powerful alliances with earthly kingdoms, was stronger than his desire to please God. He married foreign women to build alliances with all these kingdoms. The problems was that these wives influenced him in a negative way. They practiced rituals and cult like pagan practices, and he joined them! Their evil ways jumped on him!

To please these many foreign wives, he not only built them shrines and alters, but he too practiced their demonic practices. He deliberately disobeyed God. What was he thinking? Looks like in the female department he wasn’t so wise! I want to know why on earth anyone would want 700 wives and 300 concubines? If you ask my husband, one wife is more than enough! Ha…

Sometimes people aren’t punished for their disobedience in this life time, but their children take the brunt of the punishment.  It seems to me that it would be much more painful of punishment to think that something I did caused my children and kingdom pain. I would rather take the punishment myself. But as you see with Solomon his punishment for pagan practices fell on his son. This really makes you think about not disobeying God.

We need to take God seriously, and his commands seriously. Both Old Testament and New Testament are very clear about that. Old Testament commands were not abolished by Jesus. He rather came to be the living word, giving us clear application for God’s word.

You’ll notice that God keeps his promises, even if that means only leaving a remnant of people.

We too are to shine like a lamp for the Lord. If we obey God’s decrees and commands, he will always be with us. This is a theme we see over and over. The laws of God are important and to be taken seriously.

Rehoboam made a crucial mistake. He failed to take the advice of older, wiser council. Instead he listened to a younger, less experienced advisor. We too should seek advice from experienced, older professionals. Experience does matter! We should treat others the way we would like to be treated. Being harsh with people, throwing your weight around, will back fire, as it did with Rehoboam.

  1. Obey God- your alliance should be with Yahweh first! Your Allegiance is to Him! ( don’t give into pressure)
  2. You’re asking for trouble when you marry someone who does not worship the One True God.
  3. Punishment and judgment will come for disobedience- in this life, the next or passed down.
  4. Seek Older Wise counsel. Young people do not always give the best advice.
  5. Don’t be harsh with people or play hard ball.

Thoughts of Acts 9: 1-25

Saul was one of the worst persecutors of the message of Jesus the Messiah. He was a Roman citizen, a Pharisee born of Pharisee, who was brought up with a deep background in Jewish religious teachings. His past prepared him to overcome every objection, and he was equipped to bring the gospel not just his people, the Jews but also the gentiles. His Roman citizenship served him well on many occasions when he was in trouble, in prison or accused. This small detail actually helped the gospel spread to more gentiles.

A light blinded him and he heard Jesus. “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting.”

Soon after, faithful Ananias, put his fears aside and obeyed the vision. He went to Saul, the very one who had been hunting Jesus followers, and Ananias lay his hands on Saul.

The awesome thing is that after Saul was baptized by water and the spirit, he immediately went to the Synagogue and boldly proclaimed that Jesus was indeed the Messiah. How powerful would that have been? Everyone knew he was out to get them!  What on earth happened that this man would quickly change his tune? Nothing on earth happened, but something quite heavenly happened- divine intervention/correction!

Saul soon joined those being hunted by the Jewish Religious authorities. God has the power through the Holy Spirit to change the worst of us. If he can change Saul, he can change anyone. Never give up hope. Always pray for people.

Thoughts of Psalm 131: 1-3

I don’t worry about life because God takes care of all my needs. I’m not anxious. I don’t worry. I’m calm, cool and collected because God takes care of me. My hope is not in man, or people, or this world, but in my heavenly Father Yahweh.

 

 

June 12, 2015

1 Kings 9: 1- 10: 29

God said he would watch over the temple and called it Holy forever..with a big IF.

Solomon’s descendants did eventually disobey and reject the commands of God, and God rejected the Temple. We know this by the Israelites disobedience later and the complete destruction of the Temple in 70A.D. Jesus also prophesized about the complete destruction of the Temple on more than one occasion. Disaster struck the Temple because they abandoned God and bowed down to other gods. But none the less God made a promise to Abraham and to King David,  One of Solomon’s descendants would rule forever, the only one that will  always obey God’s commends, decrees and regulations is, Yeshua.

I’m not sure what to make of Solomon giving Hiram worthless towns. At this point, in scripture it does not seem that this damaged their relationship. Solomon’s prayer of wisdom and discernment has come true. He has fostered great relationships with near and distant kingdoms. His wisdom and wealth have rumored throughout the world attracting leaders and gaining their respect and complete admiration, like with the Queen of Sheba.

God wants to bless and then some.  Boy did he bless Solomon. But he expects us to be obedient and to not sin against him. Our blessings are contingent upon our devotion to God. Some may have delayed punishment or judgment, but all will stand accountable to God, through his son Jesus Christ whom he gave authority over everything.

Thoughts of Act 8: 14-40

It is one thing to be baptized by water and clearly another to be truly baptized with the Holy Spirit. Your heart must be pure, not captive by sin to truly receive the Spirit. Our hearts must be right to be used by God. If we still have wicked hearts, we must pray and get others to pray for us so that we can leave the sinful living behind. It’s hard letting go of our addictions, bad habits and ways of the world, but necessary if we are to be purified to do God’s work through the Holy Spirit.

I love how the Holy Spirit will lead you to certain people to speak truth into them, like the Holy Spirit did leading Philip to the eunuch from Ethiopia. Isn’t it cool at that very moment the eunuch was reading from Isaiah? I love that he spoke truth into him and immediately he was baptized. What are the odds of them passing water at that moment? Not odds, but planned by God.

Many times these connections are divine in nature. Perhaps, it’s a stranger like I met yesterday at the mall. She is a young girl expecting a baby girl  in September. Her eyes are full of fear about giving birth.

We somehow at the check out register began talking about prayer and God. She said she doesn’t pray. She hasn’t prayed for a long time, but her Mom prays for her. ” Isn’t that good enough? ” she asked.

I asked her why she didn’t pray. You could tell that something disconnected her. She was quick to tell me that she believed in Jesus and asked me isn’t that enough?

I told her it’s like this. If I knock at your door in the middle of the night and you are only an acquaintance, will I let you in? Perhaps. But if you and I spend time together, if we are bonded with sacred time with each other; then, if you knock at my door in the middle of the night because we are close friends, I will definitely let you in.

I told her  your goal is not to be an acquaintance of Jesus or to know him through someone else’s connection with him, but to know him, be best friends with him yourself.

She nodded in agreement. I could tell that my words were penetrating her heart as her eyes filled with tears.

I said, ” You need to pray every night as I did before your head hits the pillow for that baby to be mentally and physically healthy. I never missed a night.  You need God know more than you know. When you hold that baby in your arms, you will feel God in a way you have never known before.  I challenge you to start praying. If you are uncomfortable with prayer, write your prayers in a journal. ”

She smiled and told me thank you. She was really going to think about what I said. She said her mom tells her all the time to pray. I said, “Sometimes we need to hear it from someone else other than our moms.”

So God led me yesterday to the register of a young scared expecting mother who had a sense of God but had really never established a deeper connection. Perhaps, I planted a seed that she will water with prayer.

Another instance is that comment was made about  my hair one day that had me a bit insecure, so I decided to run into the mall to talk to a colorist. I never go to the mall. I had called ahead of time and really didn’t feel like the woman knew much on the phone but she was nice. So I debated on whether to run in and let them look at my hair. I felt a push to do so. I met a nice woman named Linda at the front desk. I said, “ My friend said my hair looks gothic.  I can’t look gothic and talk to people about Jesus. I’m trying to spread the word of God.”

I rattled again, ” I can’t look gothic.”

This sparked a conversation. She asked me what kind of Christian I was, meaning denomination.  Then, she  went onto  tell me that this week she was flipping her radio station and came upon a Christian station. They station quoted a scripture that peaked her interest. She told me, “I opened my bible this week for the first time in 12 years since my husband died. “

I said, “Oh, so there is another reason why I am here today Linda. I’m here to tell you that God wants your heart back. He sent me here to talk to you. “

I went onto to tell her, we are just passing through this realm on our way back home. Our loved ones who died in Christ are waiting for us on the other side. They are so happy with the Lord. We are not to waste time here but to get busy doing God’s work, sharing with others about the Lord.  I told her about how the Spirit asked me after Dad died, ” How can you serve me in your sorrow? ”  I looked deeply into her eyes and told her this is no coincidence that you opened the bible for the first time in 12 years, and we are talking about this.

I told her to start her day each day in prayer and reading the bible. We laughed and joked about God being the expresso you need, the “shot” needed to start your day off right. She hugged me twice when I leaving the store, as if there was a deeper soul connection made.

I knew that God used that insecurity about my hair, to get me to meet Linda. I called again to take a Jesus calling up to her store. She has since left the salon. I told them that if anyone knows her, to tell her that I have a gift for her. I left my number.

This beautiful woman made me feel so pretty that day , when I was feeling ugly. I hope that I was able to replant God back into her life. Was this “gothic” comment used by God to get me to the salon – you bet it was- to bring Ms. Linda back to God.

Thoughts of Psalm 130:1-8

Without God’s mercy, love and forgiveness, none of us would survive. God speaks to us through his word. His word is alive and gives us hope. Only God can redeem us, and he has done so by sending is precious sinless son Jesus Christ to cancel our huge debt.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 2-3

Are you being fire tested? Purified? The Lord will test your heart, especially after you have claimed or made an effort to walk in his ways. Being tested is part of the purification process, to purify your heart fully for God.

If you have a nanny or even grand parent, a good one will help raise and correct wayward children. Those who help raise our children and have good influence over them, will reap the rewards for raising godly children.

 

June 11, 2015

Thoughts : 1 Kings 8: 1-66

God cannot be contained. He does not live in the temple, but Solomon pleaded with the Lord to hear the prayers of those who were wholeheartedly devoted to him. Solomon knew that we are all imperfect people who would stumbled , but he prayed to God that if we repented and turned back to God, that God would have mercy on us and would hear our prayers. We too will stumble. We too should repent and turn back. If we have a heart for God, repentance is part of relationship with God.

We are to concentrate on behavior that is pleasing to the Lord and diligently work on following God by obeying his words. Yeshua points to God’s laws and teaches us how to love God and others.

We know that when a drought comes on the land, that it signifies a spiritual drought, an abandonment from the Lord. Teach us the right way to live Lord, help us have hearts that repent and turn to you so that you can and will bless us with things such as rain. Help us not to judge others but to work on our purifying our own hearts. We know that God judges the intentions, the very heart of man.

Hear the prayers of all those with authentic hearts for you, oh sovereign Lord. When we stumble, remind us that we should repent and turn back to you in action and thought. When we repent with a pure heart, forgive us. God help us have a desire to do your will and to obey all the commands, decrees. Help us to be completely faithful to the one true God of the universe.

Thoughts of Acts 7: 51-8:13

Are we as stubborn as Stephen described? Are we still disobeying God’s laws? Some people refuse to hear the truth. Some are so stubborn, they are brainwashed by what they have been taught that they have created a leather exterior over their hearts, whereby the Holy Spirit will not penetrate.  Many hear only what they want to hear. They are numb to the real truth. It’s so important as we read the word, that we pray for wisdom and understanding so that we can really grasp God’s message on how to live.

Stephen, full of the Spirit, was killed just as the other prophets were killed by their own people. They refused to listen to this young man whose face was full of light. Saul who would soon be called Paul; he  was the instigator of Stephen’s stoning. Stephen was the first to be martyred. This Spirit filled man died because he boldly shared that Jesus was the Messiah. At his death, he saw Yeshua sitting at the right hand of God. His humble spirit, even while being killed begged God to be merciful and not to charge his persecutors with this sin. He truly had a heart like Jesus. Remember at Jesus’s death he said forgive them Father, they know not what they do.  How many of us would be so loving and forgiving while someone was murdering us? We too should pray for our enemies and have mercy on even the most violent offenders.

Stephen’s death caused believers to scatter, which caused the gospel to be spread even faster to new regions. God uses all that is meant for bad for his greater good. If God is for you, nothing will stop you.  The message of Messiah has lasted thousands of years, the gospel has lived because God backs it up.

Philip went to Samaria which was huge. Samaritans were known as Jewish half breeds.  The Samaritans were a pagan sect that grew out of the tribes of Manasseh and Ephraim after their deportation in 723 BC into Assyria by Shalmaneser. So the very idea of Phillip going to spread the gospel to them was controversial and dangerous. He was able to convert a well known magician,  cast evil out many and  baptized many Samaritans. So Stephen’s death was not in vain but helped spread the gospel to many nationalities and groups of people. Jesus is for everyone.

Thoughts of Psalms 129: 1-8

Do not ever take your freedom to worship God and his Son Yeshua for granted. Do not ever take for granted the bible that you read freely. There are many nations and groups of people that still read in secrecy who cannot boldly speak of their beliefs or faith without fear of losing their life. We must pray for those who are persecuted and pray for those that boldly share their faith while risking everything.

Thoughts of Proverbs 17: 1

A house that is always fighting is no way to live at all.  It doesn’t matter if you are running a successful company or are deemed powerful or rich by the world’s standards, if you are constantly fighting , if you are living a marriage that is riddled with constant arguments or the silent treatment,  that is no life at all. It’s better to be dirt poor living in a peaceful God fearing, loving Home then to be rich and conflicted. We should all do whatever it takes to have a peaceful loving home. Blessed are the peacemakers. Do whatever it takes to bring peace, love and harmony into your home. Walk away and pray. Don’t go to bed angry.

June 10, 2015

1 Kings 7: 1-51

The king built a palace for himself, and it took 13 year. I’m not sure what to make of this. Did he put more emphasis on his or did he push harder to get to the temple done so they could worship?

We have talent that God has given us, special gifts that he might be fine tuning to be used for his purpose one day. Huram grew up with a Dad who was a craftsman, and he spent his entire life sharpening his skills of sculpting metal. Think about what talents you have or special gifts you have and how they can be used for the kingdom. Think about your testimonial story and how those experiences or stories can be used to share God with others. Our journey here is about sharing God and living for God. This journey is about love.

Thoughts of Acts 7: 30-50

Rejecting God’s chosen one, even killing or threatening to kill prophets is nothing new to the Israelites. People hear what they want to hear and reject what they want to reject. Stephen was using the past to justify that rejecting Jesus is not surprising as they did that even with their beloved Moses. How soon we forget what we’ve done, how we’ve lived, who we were? We need to use our past mistakes and the mistakes of others to prevent making the same mistakes again.  Stephen was pointing out to them that they were doing as they have always done,  rejecting the one that God sent to rescue them. They were making a terrible mistake by rejecting the message that Jesus was the Messiah sent by God to be their salvation, the final lamb.

God cannot be contained. He does not live in temples made by man. God is everywhere, and his throne is in Heaven. God needs nothing, he is God. When we have God, we need nothing. But what God wants is for him to live inside of us. We cannot allow our bodies be empty temples, empty vessels. Something will fill that temple and if it’s not God’s love, then it’s darkness.

Thoughts of Psalm 128: 1-6

Do you fear man or God? Do you want to please man or God? We must live our lives pleasing God and living for him. We must never worry about what people say or think about us because if we are living for the Lord, then he will bless us and make our paths straight. Keep focused on living for God, and you will find inner joy. You will be prosperous. When you bring Godly principals and teachings into the home, then your children will be grounded in his word and will be blessed too. It’s God in us that keeps us from making poor choices.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 31-33

I had no idea that I had a crown of glory on my head- GRAY Hair! I’m feeling quite excited that old age and stress didn’t cause that! All kidding aside, many times, not all times but many times, God blesses those who lived a godly life with a long life.

We need to fine tune our skills of being patient and practicing self-control. I sure do. We are all a work in progress.

I love this: “We may throw the dice, but the Lord determines how they falls. “

The other day I fasted for 3 days, drank just liquids. When I woke up on day 3, I was seriously thinking about eating. So I decided to throw a coin to see if I should fast or eat. The Lord said with the toss of a coin, “ fast.” So I did, I fasted that day.

During that day, I made lunch a delicious chicken sandwich on toasted bread with avocado for the two workers working at my house. I kept hearing: Do onto others as you wish done to you.  So I offered to make a sandwich for the cement workers.

As I made the sandwich for these two guys and put the jalapeno chips on their plates, I felt an overwhelming understanding of sacrificial love and what that means. I felt emotional as I made the sandwich.  I was  putting aside my own needs, my own hunger, not even putting a drip of avocado in my mouth. I couldn’t help but think about how Jesus went through so much for us- true sacrificial love.

I literally felt like crying as I handed them the plates. I wanted to give them the sandwiches, but God’s sacrificial love waved over me in my actions. Even smelling the toasted bread made my stomach turn and grumble. This taught me a lot about self-restraint and control too. When we set our mind on something, especially when we are doing something for God, we should take it very seriously. I’m so glad that God flipped the coin to fasting because Day 3 really revealed to me a lot about sacrificial love and not being selfish. If I had been selfish I would have thought, ” No way am I making them a sandwich when I can’t eat- why would I torture myself?” But instead I pushed past my own selfishness….and just put love of others first.

 

 

June 9, 2015

1 Kings 5: 1-6: 38

I’ll scratch your back and you scratch my back. When you have an equal benefiting partnership, whether it be with two nations, two companies or even two people, you are more likely to have a long lasting business partnership as in the case of King Hiram and Solomon when both parties benefit. Solomon provided food and King Hiram provided great cedars from the forests of Lebanon.

When you take care of your employees and don’t over work them, you also get better results. Solomon allowed his shift workers one month on and two month home with the family. He had ample men who were in this rotation for all kinds of positions, including picking key people to be foreman to supervise. You can get some serious work done when you think not only about logistics, leadership but also about the well being of employees. ( morale is so important)

Interesting enough, all the stones that were used were completed at the quarry, so no sound of a hammer, ax or any other tool was on the sacred temple site. At home there were quiet and peaceful assembly.

The two types of wood used was cedar and cypress, both of which have natural resistant to insects and water. He used the cypress, which Noah’s ark was built of, to put on the floor because of its qualities against rotting due to water damage. We see that prayer of wisdom showing up in his strategies, business operations and even in selecting materials for the temple.

You’ll notice that God always has contingencies of his presence which surround decrees, regulations and commands. God is the same today as he was then.  He expects us to take the laws he wrote on our hearts, and especially the 10 commandments seriously. He expects us to live our lives with the two most important commands as an integral part of our lives: 1. Love God with all your heart and soul. 2. Love your neighbor like you love yourself. When we make a sincere effort to please God and live for him, he shows up in big ways in our lives. Try living in fearfully or anxiously or with anger, see how that works out for you. These qualities can not coexist with authentic faith.

All of the 10 commandments can be placed under those two umbrella commands by Yeshua. Make it a habit to read those commandments often. We have memorized them at our house. ( Kids, Steve and Me 🙂

I bet the carvings of the palm trees, cherubim and the open flowers were gorgeous.  It took 7 years to build this temple.

Take Away: When working with people be sure that both parties benefit, especially when it’s a business relationship. Be sure to keep your word and hold up your side of the bargain. Do not skimp on materials when doing a construction projects. If you use good solid material, and precision, it will last longer. Do not over work people, but be sensitive to their physical and emotional needs. I believe the fact that our military spends so much time away from family to be one reason they have such a hard time adjusting back into the “real” world. If they had a rotation like Solomon did, the mental health would be far greater. If he had overworked his men, they would have turned on him with resentment. The would have risen against him. He led everything with the motto: treat others as you wish to be treated.

Thoughts of Acts 7: 1-29

Stephen knew biblical history and simply used his knowledge to persuade the audience of God’s plan. Could they not see that the Israelites have a habit of denying  and murdering the rescuers God sends to rescue, like they did with Moses?

We our stubborn people on earth, many of us have blinders on and our hearts are too corrupt for the veil to be lifted. It is those chosen, with open hearts for God, that the veil is lifted. Sometimes the veil is lifted in stages. As we grow in truth, our hearts become more pure for God, and our eyes and ears are opened to deeper levels of truth. Things that were hidden on the pages of the bible begin to jump off the page and into our hearts.

Thoughts of Psalm 127: 1-5

Unless the Lord is in “it”: you’re in an uphill battle. Include God in all your plans. You need his blessing, protection and he will bring peace into your life. Peace does not mean that you will not have challenges or hardships. You will but you will find strength and endurance in your trust in God. Your perspective will be far better with an eternal outlook.

God does not want you to work yourself silly. God wants you to rest; that is why he gave you the Sabbath, a day of complete rest from work. We need to really examine our lives and ask ourselves are we honoring the Sabbath in a way that even remotely resembles God’s instructions for the Sabbath. ( no work at all for anyone- no cooking even- just praising, worshiping, praying, assembling and resting)

God blesses us when we walk in his ways in many ways. One way he blesses us is through our children. They are a reward and bring joy into our lives. When they stress you out, stop and look at them and really meditate on how much you love them. Thank God for them. This will help to anchor you when you are about to have a momma or papa bear moment.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 28-30

Don’t be a trouble maker or spread gossip. Think before you speak. Try not to let one bad thing come out of your mouth. We should use our words to uplift and be positive.

Violent people do mislead, look at what’s going on in the Middle East.  So many are pulled into this violence, mainly because they want to be part of something greater than themselves.  We all have the opportunity to be part of God’s kingdom, we can unify with his love as the foundation.

 

 

June 8, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Kings 3:3- 4: 34

How many of us feel like Solomon did, like a child who doesn’t know his way around? We all can feel overwhelmed or unsure at times, but like Solomon we too can pray for understanding and wisdom. We should pray for God to help us know the difference between right and wrong. Solomon could have asked for anything he wanted. But he asked for wisdom and discernment. Because he asked for this, God blessed him also with riches and fame.

If we follow God and his decrees and commands, we too have the opportunity to be blessed with a long life. God spoke to Solomon in a dream. He can also speak to us in dreams. We must pay close attention to our dreams especially those that stick with us or wake us up in the night. I suggest writing those significant dreams down.

We see Solomon’s wisdom in how he handled the two prostitutes who were both claiming the child. He was cleaver on how he figured out the real mother, by revealing the heart. (side note: I have heard many horror stories about babies being smothered while sleeping with a parent. Please warn any new mothers and fathers not to do this, even if it’s convenient. I have also heard stories of long hair smothering an infant.)

Solomon knew how to delegate and how to deal fairly with other nations. He had peace all around him and within his kingdom. I love that each family in his kingdom had a garden. How awesome would that be today if the government  helped families, especially impoverished families grow their own fruits and vegetables?

God gave Solomon great wisdom and understanding and knowledge as vast as the sands of the seashore. His wisdom is passed down to us in 3000 proverbs and 1,005 songs- so we can try to absorb some of the godly wisdom. I loved how well versed Solomon was on many topics. We too should expand our minds to learn about different things like plants, animals, science and so forth.

Thoughts of Acts 6: 1-15

There is always going to be problems with any kind of club, group or church. It’s part of the deal. It’s how you handle the problems or rumblings that matters. You can see that just as discrimination is part of the topic today, it was also an issue back then. It’s important that we are sensitive to people’s needs and feelings. As any church grows, there needs to be delegation of duties so that each need is handled with care and precision and nothing gets lost in the shuffle.

Because the apostle’s main job was spending time in prayer and teaching the word, they needed help with the food program. But they still took the problem with the food bank very seriously and did not disregard the concerns. They chose seven men who were not just capable but respected and spirit filled to run the food program. It’s so important that we chose people for positions who really have a heart for the job.

So we see that Stephen was chosen as one of the special leaders of this program. This young man was gifted by God with great wisdom and the spirit. The power of God was heard from him, and he was very persuasive. This was a threat and lying witnesses rose up against him. So we see that the religious authorities were so threatened that they were willing to disobey the 9th commandment.

What must they have thought when in front of the high council Stephen’s face glowed like an angels? (Similar to Moses face) You would think that would have been a sign to the council that he was chosen by God. So many times, people have evidence and proof right in their face but choose to ignore it. Their eyes are veiled because their hearts are corrupt.

Thoughts Psalm 126: 1-6

What amazing things has the Lord done for you? How have you seen him working in your life or the life of others? You have an arsenal of stories which serve as evidence that God is very much alive. God gets us through our tears and those stories become seeds of faith planted in the hearts of others. Do not keep your God stories to yourself, share with those that are sad, suffering, who have lost hope….It’s our job to use these testimonies of faith to build God’s kingdom, just as the miracles were used as evidence in biblical times.

Thoughts Proverb 16: 26-27

If we spoon feed people, make life too easy, this includes are kids, people will not have the drive to work harder. “It is good for workers to have an appetite an empty stomach drives them on. “ The tougher times in life, should inspire us to work harder, but when we use anything as a crutch, then that crutch can actually inhibit us from the self-satisfaction from the payoff of hard work. That crutch can actually debilitate our mindset and get us in a routine of depending on others rather than God or our own abilities.

We should pray to God to help us be all that we can be. When we work, we should work like we are working for the Lord. We should continue to help those that are sick, suffering, helpless. But with those who have able bodies, our efforts would be better suited to help them find work, find better work or get them training they need to feed their families.

June 7, 2015

Thoughts :1 King 2: 1-3:2

Usually when someone takes over a company, they clean house, get rid of the problem makers and the dead weight. Solomon was wise and listened to his Dad, yet he was fair and merciful. He gave people for the most part opportunity to follow his rules or else. At the first signs of trouble, he took care of it. He didn’t hem-haw about it, he eliminated the trouble makers. He saw firsthand how these trouble makers rallied people against his Dad’s kingdom. He was smart enough to learn from mistakes he had seen in the past. Go Solomon!

If there are people that you are hanging with or even people that work under you that are gossips or trouble makers or just aren’t cutting the mustard, it’s best to cut your ties and move on. We should always be merciful but very clear about our expectations. Dragging feet when dealing with difficult malignant people can really end up hurting you. If you can’t get rid of them all together, but have to work with them, try not to get emotionally involved,  be cordial but don’t get pulled into the drama. Be aware as Solomon was of people who scheme to get what they want.

Solomon knew that his security of his nation was largely impacted by the relationships he had with nations around him. Egypt was a wealthy and powerful nation. He literally married that nation. This was a smart move for security. But the problem later becomes that when he married into these pagan nations, he weakened under pressure and appeased some of these demanding women by building alters and sacrificing to false Gods. We aren’t there yet. But Solomon’s weakness was largely due to influential wives. We must be sure footed against any peer pressure so that we are grounded in our allegiance to God before anyone else.

Thoughts of Acts 5: 1-42

You can get by with lying to man, but no lie goes unnoticed to God. You can see what a half-truth did to these two. They should have just come clean and said that they wanted to give half the money from the sale of the land instead of lying. God can do miraculous and amazing miracles that cause us to rejoice. But God is also a powerful judge who has the ability, when he sees fit, to punish or even eliminate someone for disobedience. We should have a healthy fear of the Lord, which will inspire us to live right which includes honesty.

Meeting with fellow believers, having friends that are strong believers is so important. United we are stronger and less weakened by the sin in this world. How powerful was the Spirit in Peter that if his shadow fell on sick people they would be healed. Wow! Like Jesus, he healed the sick and casted demons out of possessed people. Many came to God because of these miracles.

The Sanhedrin were so jealous and threw the apostles in jail. But an angel of the Lord came and opened the gates. How awesome would that be? Then, with boldness they obeyed the angel and spoke the Message of Life! Jesus is the message of Life! Can you imagine the look on the Sanhedrin’s faces when they realized that they got out of jail?

Today if people try to judge you or hush you or mock you because of Jesus, do not worry about them. Remember what Peter said, “We must obey God rather than any human authority.” This means also our spouses or families who may oppose our pursuits of God.

Jesus put at the right hand of God as the Savior! He died for our sins.  What is our response supposed to be? Repent of our sins! It’s interesting to me that many baptisms these days don’t ask the question before the baptism: “Do you repent of your sins? Repentance has always been at the heart of everything. God is a merciful God but expects us to repent when we displease him. This is a key ingredient to salvation.

A heart of repentance and a heart that obeys is necessary for the Holy Spirit to be poured into it. …”Holy Spirit, who is given by God to those who obey him.”

The wisdom of God came through Gamaliel. What’s amazing to me is that truth about Jesus being the Messiah lived for 1,000 of years and is still flourishing despite the leader not being visible, despite the apostles all dying, most of them terrible deaths. God backed up this movement. The followers did not scatter. No one has been able to overthrow the message of Jesus Christ as the Savior sent by God. If you deny it, you are an enemy of God, fighting him. No thanks! Watch out for cults who speak of Jesus but do not believe he is the resurrected Messiah!

The apostles took suffering for Jesus as an honor. We too should take each stone, judgment or bad thing that is said about us as a badge of honor. They did not let any affliction stop them. They continued to go to the temple every day despite the treatment they received there and the opposition. They did not let politics stop them from speaking truth and going to church. They also went house to house. I think this is a great reminder to us to do bible studies at home, home ministry and to not let any hypocrisy or drama keep us from worshiping and teaching!

Thoughts of Psalm 125: 1-5

I just love thinking about the security I have in the Lord. It motivates me to do my part of course to keep my Father pleased.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16:25

We must measure what is right not by societies eyes or our own eyes- but measure everything against the standards of God.

 

June 6, 2015

1 Kings 1: 1-53

Poor David was so cold when he was old. I visualize him bone thin, unable to get warm. How nice is it to get a personal snuggle partner to warm you up? I guess the many wives he had didn’t cut the mustard? Or maybe they didn’t want to snuggle. A little weird having a pretty girl be the snuggle partner, but at least there wasn’t any funny business going on.

Discipline is so important in really molding our children into being morally and sound people. David never disciplined Adonijah, not even asking him why are you doing that? David really fell short in the parental correction or discipline department with more than one child. We can see that not paying attention to children, not disciplining them and not handling problems correctly can really destroy a family and cause major conflict. So don’t hesitate to discipline your children. You are molding them into the men and women God needs them to be.

The other problem is that Adonijah, like Absalom, was super handsome. So he was spoiled rotten and probably got a ton of attention for his looks. He probably got by with a lot more in a lot of arenas because of who his Dad was and also because he was good looking. We need to be very careful with children who get a lot of attention for being cute or handsome. We need to really pump into them about beauty being from within, in the heart. Or as my grandma used to say, “Pretty is as Pretty does. “  I tell Braxton that and she tells me, “ No, Momma Pretty is as Pretty is…” I’m still working on baby girl, but her heart is sweet most of the time. 😉

When the world keeps telling you that you are pretty, it can go to your head or you can get insecure thinking that is your only value. As we all know, beauty is only skin deep and fades with age. It is that inner beauty, that wisdom and love that God gives us that really counts.  As parents we need to ground our children and humble them even if they are cute. Otherwise when they are teens or even adults, they will be too big for their britches! (another grandma saying)

David spent so much time in “kingdom” affairs that he neglected his duties at home with discipline, correction and upbringing. We cannot let work or home duties distract us from the hard job of correcting our children. Kids need discipline and really starve for people to correct them and teach them.

So here is Adonijah already claiming the throne while his Daddy was dying in bed. He did not go to King David to ask about who would be the next King. He did not respect his Dad’s authority. He had no regards to his Dad’s illness or authority and tried to close the deal by assumption and calculated who was invited to his political party, carefully eliminating anyone who would not support him. He clearly had a bad heart to disregard David and his other brothers like that. You’ll notice he left Solomon out.

So Bathsheba went to the King to speak on her and Solomon’s behalf. Remember Bathsheba was the beauty bathing on the roof top of which David got in a heap of trouble with…and got this family curse. Remember David had that murderous affair, killed Bathsheba’s honorable military husband.

David said to have Solomon anointed with olive oil and named King. So glad that Bathsheba had the guts to go to David and deal with this head on. She did not sit by and wait for David to die. She was bold and got people to back her up. We too must not hold back but handle affairs directly, honestly and in a timely fashion. Don’t stew on it or wait- or else it could be too late. Listen to that God gut!

It was also neat that David got to be part of the naming of his son King, while he was still alive- like passing the torch.

Thoughts of Acts 4: 1-37

This miraculous healing at the temple jumped up the believers another 2,000+ ( not including women and children). God can use our stories like this too to share the gospel. Our mess for his message or even the miracles in our life to spread the gospel. We can even use others miraculous stories in our ministry.

I love Peter’s boldness. Without mincing words he clearly said that this man was healed in the name of Jesus. Peter tells us that salvation is found in no one else. God has given no one else under heaven that authority. Peter was not trained in the scriptures yet he spoke with boldness, quoted scriptures and the miracle was evidence to all that God backed him up.

We too can speak bold without having a degree in Theology. With the Holy Spirit by our side and with God’s power we can speak truth which will amaze crowds and transform lives.

My favorite part; “Do you think God wants us to obey you rather than him?”

We all need to carry that kind of thought with us everywhere. So when the world tries to say what is wrong is right, you can boldly say that you agree not with the world but with God the creator who says that is WRONG!

He was not intimidated by the hostile climate or the threat. Peter knew that they could easily crucify him like they did Jesus. But he also knows that Jesus was the son of God and that this life is not it. He has a bigger fish to fry….doing God’s work!  He knows his goal is to feed and care for the sheep now until he will be with  Jesus in paradise.

The man had been lame for 40 years. There is that number again. I feel like with me that God truly transformed me at right before 40. I too was spiritually lame for 40 years and thank Heaven above that I was touched by the Holy Spirit! We should thank God for bringing us closer to him, for opening our eyes. Be sure to pray for those that are lost, sad and still living in the past or living for approval of this world. So many think they are safe or saved but they are not. Keep praying….for them.

Lord, give us great boldness like you did Peter to preach your word. Unite all believers Lord in this fallen world. Help us God to share our belongings with each other and to help the poor. Help us to come together to take care of the poor so that no one is in need. Let us be as generous as Barnabas who was a giver of money and time. He was the great encourager in the bible, investing and believing in people!

Thoughts of Psalm 124: 1-8

What if? What if God had not been there? What if God had not helped?

What if I didn’t have God in my life? I can’t imagine not having the Lord in my heart. I thank God for how far I’ve come in my walk and in my connection. We must not ever forget that when we have God, we have everything. We need for nothing when we have God. If everything is taken from us, if we are stripped bare of all things- materialism, even family – If we have God….we have everything. This life is a mere breath. We are passing through, strangers in this land, trying to get back home. If we have God leading us back home…then we have everything. Don’t ever forget what God has done for you and keep him close as you travel through this life back to safety.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 24

Kind words are like honey: sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.

Be kind to everyone you meet. When you’re tired, bite your tongue. If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. Compliment people. If you see someone who is sad, complement them, say something nice. Be God’s worker bee- smile, be kind and love all.

 

June 5, 2015

2 Samuel 23: 24-24:25

You can have the best doctors, best company, the biggest army, the best technology, but these things are powerless without the backing of God’s power. Ultimately, your future, security, even your health is in God’s hands. He has the power to bless, heal, conquer. David was getting a little full of himself, counting his troops to brag. Remember there have many battles where God scaled down the troops so that everyone would know that it was God’s hand that won the battle, not human efforts. God is a merciful God but people are not that merciful. David chose God’s punishment for his sin of prideful arrogance.

We see here that there is such a thing as a “death angel” and at God’s command he stopped the plague. Araunah the Jebusite had a sweet heart, willing to give everything to David so that they could sacrifice and stop this plague. But David knew that it was not right to take from this giving man, but to pay him generously for his generous heart. We should never take advantage of others generosity or kindness, even if they insist.

If you are curious what a threshing floor is read: It’s often used in scripture around judgement. http://www.gotquestions.org/threshing-floor.html

Thoughts of Acts 3: 1-26

Three O’clock prayer time is a great idea! Many of us stop for an afternoon break like a  cup of coffee , how about adding a 3pm prayer to that? Temple was part of daily life. We so need that again.

God poured the Holy Spirit over Peter and John. They had the power of God within them able to heal the sick in the name of Jesus Christ. The miracles were proof that God was endorsing their message that Jesus was the Messiah, a servant of God.

When God does miracles in our life or blesses us, who do we give credit to? ( ourselves, someone else- or do we give credit always to God?)

We should be praising God, thanking him and thanking anyone he sent to help us reach our goal.

So this lame man who was seen begging all the time at the temple got more than he asked for, through the power of Jesus’s name, Peter and John healed him.   He leaped and praised God throughout the temple.

His miraculous story became a powerful witnessing story on the streets and in the temple. His story gave Peter an opportunity to share the gospel and to witness to others about Jesus, who was the messiah sent by God. When you see a window of opportunity to share your testimonial story or to share God, you must like Peter did, seize it. You could be the seed that saves a soul. Your story might point them into God’s direction.

This miracle was not from Peter or John’s power. This power was from God the Father and was a confirmation that what they were preaching about Jesus being the Messiah was true! This miracle was evidence that the gospel of Jesus Christ had God’s  stamp of approval all over it!

God sent his son Jesus to give us life through his blood which was spilled out for us.  Those who repent, turn to God and believe in Jesus are born again,  saved from the death associated with sin.   God raised Jesus from the dead. Our belief in Jesus, equals belief in God and we too are raised from the dead.

Peter and John were witnesses to Jesus’s resurrection and ascension.  Jesus had to die so that scriptures would be fulfilled. So eyes were blinded, people were purposely ignorant so God’s plan could take place.

Now what are we all to do?

“Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away. “

Now where does it say, “Just say you believe and you will be saved?”  or  ”  live how you want to live, don’t worry- God will forgive you? ”

It never says that. True repentance, true love for God brings forth a change of character,  a change of heart which includes purposeful obedience. Turning to God takes continuous effort on our part,  that in combination with Faith equals salvation.

Later he says: “When God raised up his servant, Jesus, he sent him first to the people of Israel, to bless you by turning each of you back from your sinful ways! “

So if we claim Jesus as our savior, we must turn away from our sinful ways! We can’t live like those Sadducees who wore the adorned gowns, preached God but lived dirty little lives. We must not live for self but live to serve. We must not be a slave to things of this world but a slave to God. Yes God is merciful and loving, but he wants to see us make efforts. When we goof up- we repent and truly change.

The days are coming where Jesus will come again. Believers will be refreshed at the presence of the Lord, non-believers will not. Jesus, our Messiah, will soon bring final restoration to this spiritually sinfully dying earth. Peter says we must listen carefully to everything Jesus tells us. So when you read the gospels and read the words of Jesus, pay careful attention. Really meditate on how you can apply Jesus’s teaching and advice to your life. Try to really throw out what you’ve been taught at church or through Pastors, and really read the exact words of Jesus. What is he telling you? If you are interpreting something different than what Pastors for instance have preached, then pray about it. The Holy Spirit reveals the truth to the sheep. It’s so important that we get Jesus’s words right and apply them in the correct ways.  Pray over the words to grasp the deeper meaning.

Thoughts of Psalm 123:1-4

As I see the world in disarray, I look to the heavens more and more for signs and answers. I get my cues from God on everything. I pray for the world, for our broken country, for all these misguided people. The enemies influence has spread like yeast throughout the earth corrupting the hearts of so many. People put their faith in everything but God.

We as a world have fallen so far away. There are more hearts on earth that have fallen under the spell of the diabolical. So many deny the power of God or power of Jesus’s name. So many have added to the scriptures, have twisted the scriptures or have added socially acceptable norms to God’s message.

Only God himself can solve this problem and bring true restoration to this world. I find myself more and more asking God to reveal himself in a big way, to save us. I can’t anymore visualize a safe world for my kids or grandkids. I am not pessimistic yet optimistic that Jesus will come and save us. We will escape into his safe, loving arms. In this, I find such peace in this festering worldly environment. I believe this could happen in our life time, maybe sooner than we think.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 21-23

Those who are wise show discretion in all things. They are cautious with words and how they carry themselves. (This includes modesty) We should always let love lead us. We should be careful in how we appear, behave and speak, so that we do not offend or reveal private information. This does not mean though that we should ever side with “worldly views” rather always side on the truth in the “word.” But remember love the sinner but not the sin.

 

 

June 4, 2015

God is a God of warning. In the final days, the earth will have a terrible earthquake because of God’s anger. He will open the heavens and come down with storm clouds around, many at first will not see him because the darkness will veil him. A brightness around him will break through showing itself to all of the earth, and we will hear the voice of God. He will scatter his enemies and confuse them. Then, at his command the sea will expose the floor and the mountains will flatten. He will rescue his faithful flock from the powerful forces of evil. He will lead us to a place of safety because we have a heart for God. This scenario is seen many times in the bible.

2 Samuel 22:16The valleys of the sea were exposed and the foundations of the earth laid bare at the rebuke of the LORD, at the blast of breath from his nostrils.

Revelation 16:20: And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found.

Earthquakes have been used by God many times in the bible. When Jesus was crucified an earthquake shook the temple and tore the curtain. When God comes back to throw out the current ruler,  the earthquake will shake down to the very foundation.

God is our Rock, and he sent Yeshua as the Lamb, the final sacrifice to cover the sins of all those who believe in Him. (Believe is a verb- requires action not just empty words). We are not to fear what is to come, but to rejoice that our Heavenly Father will rescue his children. Pray everyday that God reveals himself, you will be part of his chosen flock.

Just as David had 3 powerful forces in his army. The power behind those forces is at the head God the Father. We too have 3 powerful forces protecting and guiding us. The Father: Yahweh, The Son: Yeshua and the Holy Spirit. With God’s power behind us, we have no fear of anything seen or unseen, spiritual or physical.

Thoughts of Acts 2:1-47

To reach all nations with the gospel, the spirit was poured out over the apostles and those congregated together. This is what we call “speaking in tongues.” So Peter and the other apostles, could now go out anywhere and speak the truth about God the Father and the son of God. Each person would hear the truth in their own native language. This is kind of the opposite of what God did at the Tower of Babel.

Be careful and know that the enemy can use what seems to be a gift from above to pull you away from God. This gift had a very clear, concise purpose to bring people to God, it should never distract from the true message of God. The ability of speaking in tongues enabled the apostles to move much faster without language barriers in order to spread the truth to the world, so that each would be reconciled with God though repentance, belief in God’s son Jesus. (Remember once again belief is a verb- requires more than just saying it)

We should not fear those who speak in modern day tongues but weigh everything against scripture.

When you read the last days, I believe in my heart we are there or very near there. You do not have to be a prophet to look at the climate of the world and the moral landscape of the times and the political movement that correlates with biblical prophecy to know that we are in full blown pregnancy pains.

This is the time right now to get right with God fully. To pursue reading the bible, not just as a quest of completion, but as a quest of understanding. Ask the Lord to peel back the veil that has been over your eyes to give you true wisdom and discernment to understand the scriptures.

When you read the scriptures closely, key words will stand out. You will begin to see things not through worldly vision or family embedded or religious upbringing implantation of thought, but you will begin to see it through God’s eyes. You like Jacob will wrestle with God over scripture.   God loves your quest for truth, your questions and your pursuit to understand it from His perspective. As he did with the disciples, he will unveil the truth to you in stages, you will see with more clarity every day.

As we approach the time when the tribulation or great tribulation starts, we could be in one now, if you have a pure heart, a desire to really understand and bond with God, then the understanding will come more rapidly.

We are also told as disciples to care and feed the sheep. So we are to go out, share the truth with loving others- feeding them the bread ( word) of God and helping people with their physical needs like physically feeding them. Remember, how many were turned to God through the mass feeding of fish and bread on the hill. Love people unconditionally and their heart will open to hearing God’s message.

It is through our love, our generosity and our care, that the people see the Lord God in our hearts and their hearts are open to hearing the truth from the Spirit that is within us. Love is the key to opening the door for people to receive the gospel. It will never be argument or justification. Not everyone will hear or see. God sees into the hearts of everyone, he chooses who will hear and who will not. But pray for them. Because the Holy Spirit has the power to soften the worst of hearts.

God publically endorsed Jesus with the signs and miracles. Peter was a witness of God raising Jesus from the dead, so were all the apostles.

  1. Jesus is Lord: noun: lord; someone or something having power, authority, or influence; a master or ruler. ( God gave Jesus authority and power)
  2. Jesus is Messiah: noun the promised deliverer of the Jewish nation prophesied in the Hebrew Bible.

What must we do to be reconciled with God? Peter says:

  • Repent of our sins
  • Turn to God ( Quest for Transformation: obedience, righteousness, love, service)

How are we supposed to worship?

Devote yourself to the apostle’s teachings: (Emphasize on the teachings from any of the 12 chosen, and the Old Testament Jesus and those apostles taught)

  • Meet together- fellowship:
  • Share meals, including breaking bread in remembrance of Jesus
  • Pray together, praise God
  • Share what you have with others- generous with all.
  • Share good will with everyone

(This group met together every single day at the temple. So they did not cease to worship at the Jewish temple just because they proclaimed Jesus as the Messiah. Jesus did not come to abolish the law but to live it. In a fallen world, believers must support each other and be constantly in the word, surrounded by fellow believers to stay strong. This is why prayer and daily reading is so important. What we are missing is the daily coming together.  God is not for just one day, but every single day.)

Thoughts of Psalm 12: 2:1-9

“They come to give thanks to the name of the Lord” Using someone’s real name is powerful. Consider when you pray using Yahweh and Yeshua. Be on first name basis with God and the Son of God.)

  • Elohim– God the creator and judge of the Universe.
  • YHVH– (all caps) : Yahweh: personal name of God. When God revealed His name to Moses, He revealed Himself as YHWH or Yahweh which is best translated as “I AM WHO I AM” again, in all capital letters (EX 3:14-15).
  • Ben Elohim: Son of God
  • Yeshua is a name which means ‘Salvation’ in Hebrew. ( Joshua or Jesus)

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 19-20

Better to live humbly with the poor than to be weighted down with the superficiality and responsibility of materialism of this world. Those who apply God’s word will thrive. Those who put their trust in God and not things of this world will have inner joy.

 

 

June 3, 2015

2 Samuel 20:14-21:22

We can all get tunnel vision when trying to finish a task, so focused that we may not be taking the best approach. It’s good to get opinions of others who might have a fresh approach or perspective. Sometimes it can eliminate a lot of hard work and heartache even, when we are open to advice. Joab was able to calm down and to focus enough to listen to the older woman’s advice. He was able to get his task of killing Sheba done much quicker and without destroying an entire fortified town. It’s also good for us to heed advice of older and wiser people or experts.

Sometimes we go through droughts or other hard times as punishment for some sin. This particular drought had to do with Saul’s group disobeying an oath not to hurt the Gibeonites.

This seems cruel to kill Saul’s sons and family- to pay the price for Saul’s sin. But what we learn from this is that are sinful living can effect our children’s lives, we can also pass down sinful habits. But you’ll notice that God  lovingly cared for the grieving mother by making sure the bodies of her family were properly buried.

Sin in general can hurt so many. That is why the idea of living eternally with God in a sin free environment seems so refreshing. Slade used to have a book that talked about everything being “dark.” In a dark, dark world, in a dark, dark night. We hated that book from the reading lab.

But sin really makes this such a dark-dark world and all sin must be dealt with either through blood of Jesus, refinement, punishment etc…There is always repercussions of some kind from disobedience to God.

These giants sounded hideous with the one having 12 fingers and 12 toes—fee-fi-fo-fum

David’s guys seem to not have any problem slaughtering these massive men.

Thoughts of Acts 1: 1-26

The apostles chosen by Jesus: (Matthew 10: 2-4): Each of these mean were given further instructions by Jesus as he appeared and reappeared during the 40 days after resurrection. He proved to this group that he was alive, like by eating with them. He personally talked to this group about the Kingdom of God. He sent the Holy Spirit to baptize these chosen ones. These 12 were told by Jesus that they would be the witnesses that tell people everywhere about him. Because Jesus himself is very clear that these men walked with Jesus from baptism to ascension, their writings should hold more weight in our hearts than other writings by those who took the title of apostle. A true apostle is one that was there from baptism to ascension by definition of the bible. This group had firsthand experience with the miracles and teachings with the Son of God. This group saw with their own eyes the resurrection and ascension. These 12 brought light into the world, the light of the Lord. Almost all of them died for Christ. So when you read the bible, pay careful attention to any writings by this group. If your heart conflicts over writings of these versus someone else in the bible, lean on the side of these twelve rays of lights.

  1. Simon (who is called Peter)
  2. Simon-Peter’s brother Andrew
  3. James son of Zebedee,
  4. James brother John;
  5. Philip
  6. Bartholomew
  7. Thomas
  8. Matthew the tax collector
  9. James son of Alphaeus
  10. Thaddaeus
  11. Simon the Zealot
  12. Matthias ( who replaced Judas Iscariot)

Thoughts of Psalm 121: 1-8

I’m so happy that the Lord watches over our lives! He cares for us in so many ways.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16:18

Those who are arrogant and full of themselves because of their own achievements will fall.

 

NLT June 2, 2015

2 Samuel 19: 11-20:13

So here we are at a crossroads of what could be peace. The last to show up was the tribe of Judah, David’s on clan. But he is merciful and loving and allowed them much honor in helping him to cross the river. However, the rest of the clan felt that David had honored his own family more than the rest. Then, David’s family started talking smack and ignited conflict with the rest of the tribes. Complaining, jealousy and arguing never ends well. Blessed are the peacemakers.

We see that someone from the tribe of Benjamin, same tribe as Saul, ignited a divide and war. So instead of peace, we have division and war again among God’s tribes. Could David have intervened and appeased all the tribes? I think so.

Joab is a cunning warrior with little conscious. It would be good not to cross him. Although, he is morally not sound in all decisions; God uses his warrior talented to defend David’s Kingdom and to speak sense into David at times. I’m not sure why on earth David would think about making Absalom’s old commander, Amasa,  commander. That was kind of slap in the face of Joab if you ask me.

Because of Absalom’s sin of raping or sleeping with all of David’s concubines, they were secluded. But David still made sure that he cared for them. But these poor concubines all died widows because of Absalom’s sin against them. Sin is so damaging, and it is heart breaking what damaging effects it has on  innocent victims.

David tried to be fair and just and forgiving to all those who have hurt him. Yet, he seemed to favor his own clan which caused conflict. He really worked towards having a peacefully celebration as he headed back to Jerusalem. But  he failed to help in the conflict between all the tribes. He really should have got involved and allowed each tribe to help him cross. He should not have shown favoritism to his own clan. We can’t pick and choose who we are fair too. We can’t get lazy in one area or show favoritism sometimes. Fairness, mercy and justice must be engrained in us at all times to all.

Thoughts of John 21: 1-25

Peter denied Jesus 3 times. He had repented already for his denial/sin. But Jesus questioned Peter 3 times on his love for him. When Peter claimed to love Jesus what did Jesus say?

He said Take Care of my Sheep and Feed my Lambs. Both care and feed are action words. What Jesus was saying is if you truly love me, you will put that love into action by sharing the truth and caring for those in need and suffering. You must be willing to lay your life down for me. Believing in Jesus is more than words or a good thought, it’s backed up by action and service. Jesus was punctuating this point about faith clearly to all of us.

John was the only one at the foot of the cross during the crucifixion. I believe his loyalty to the end, may have been the reason he was not killed a martyr. God can do as he pleases with each of us. We each have our own path. John lived long enough to write several books including Revelation. Living on the island of Patmos was hard too; I can’t imagine being a castaway either. Each apostle gave up everything to spread the gospel so that we know Jesus and what he expects out of us. They sacrificed much so that we all have the potential to be reconciled with God through the Son of God.

Thoughts of Psalm 120:1-7

Life is tough, real tough at times. Sometimes life is heart breaking. Cry out to God. He loves you, hears you and will get you through.

Proverbs 16: 16-17

True wisdom comes from God, often through our experiences both good and bad. Wisdom also comes from the word of God. It is far greater to have God’s wisdom and than to be rich in materialism.

We should aim to be righteous and virtuous in all dealings. If we aim to please God through actions  then we will be on the safe path.

 

NLT June 1, 2015

Thoughts on 2 Samuel 18:1-19:10

See how our sin seems to follow us and haunts us? David’s original sin of murderous adultery, nice combo, was the a reason that he had so much family tragedy. David carried a lot of guilt for his past acts, so much that it caused him to mishandle Absalom on more than one occasion.

We must work so hard to settle family rifts quickly. What can seem like a small thing, can soon turn into years of disconnect. Murder and rape in a family are certainly not things you get over quickly at all.  But still this situation from the very beginning was mishandled.

All of us have family problems, but the key is to handle them with the grace and love, thinking to yourself, “What would Jesus do?” or “How would Jesus respond?”

We can see that ignoring a situation or running from a problem or alienating ourselves from someone, is not really solving the problem; it’s really making the problem worse. Our family no matter what they do will always be our family. I have seen too many families, including my own family, lose each other over something as simple as a misunderstanding or disagreement.

Forgiveness is not an option, it’s a requirement by God. Love is also a requirement.  It took me a long time to figure that one out. Luckily, God helped me through. I was so lost in my resentment, anger, abandonment and unforgiving heart. I really can relate to Absalom. But I can also relate to David too. It breaks my heart to see so many families on facebook that are hurting and estranged. Life is so short.

Do not let a day go by without settling matters and making up.

Absalom must have felt very abandoned and misunderstood by his Dad and not validated in his concern for Tamar’s rape. I would think like any son, deep down he wanted to reunite with his Dad, to be accepted by his Dad.  When Absalom originally came back into Jerusalem, but then to be casted aside and forbidden to see his Dad, that rejection, sadness soon turned to disgust,  hate and rage.

Regardless, David still loved his son very much and didn’t want his armies to kill him.

When then disobeyed him and killed his son, David cried and cried. He went into deep mourning. But he was willing to put his own needs aside to commend the armies for their efforts defeating the enemy who was none other than his own son. David I think was mourning on different levels. He was mourning for his own original sin, the guilt and the loss of now 3 children. He knew that he had caused all of this.

A death with regrets, like this one with Absalom, is grieved with so much more intensity. I know what David was going through, as I grieved my Dad much harder than I did my Grandmother, of which I had no regrets.   I can tell you the one with bad history and regrets hurt far worse.

Just as David put his grieving aside to encourage the troops. I too had to put my grieving aside because Braxton was mimicking me. I had to put my feelings aside around her so that she would not imitate my grief. It was not healthy for her to cry so hard. Sometimes we must sacrifice for others because we love and care for them.

We must all be accountable for our mistakes. We too must be willing to put our needs aside for others. It’s not always about us, but for the greater good. You’ll notice that they people said they “anointed” Absalom to rule over them. The problem was that God handpicked and anointed King David. Nobody can overrule God’s choice for leadership unless he is done with the leader.

Thoughts of John 20: 1-31

God unveils eyes often in stages. Everyone was still not really hearing what Jesus had warned them and told them. He would die and rise on the 3rd day. I don’t think the disciples and the followers could wrap their mind around that. The grief they felt was so intense, that they still could not see clearly. It was not until Jesus called Mary by her name, that she recognized him.

We too should listen for Jesus’s voice, through the Holy Spirit he left us. It’s an art. We cannot be clouded by stress, anxiety or caught up in the stuff of this world if we are to listen. When we are calm Christ like vessels, putting everything in perspective then the Holy Spirit will speak to us.

Jesus ascended to the Father, which is our Father and his Father, is his God and our God.

Over the next 40 days, Jesus appeared and reappeared and disappeared. Each time, he was fully flesh eating and drinking and teaching. His wounds were real. He was not a ghost. We are to constantly work on being faithful. “Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

I love that in my notes it says that the word believe is a verb, an action word. Believing in Jesus is not just about faith, but it’s about believing, which means putting that faith into action. So when we say we believe, what we are saying is that we are actively believing…we are not just reading the bible but we are working on putting those commands into practice, we are not just reading about feeding the poor, caring for the elderly or sick, we are actually doing that.  We must live each day with unconditional love for all….In general, we are working on purification continuously, and we are saved by believing in the power of Jesus’s name.

Thoughts of Psalm 119: 153-176

Times will be tough in this life and people will not always be on your side, the world is dark. But through those tougher times, we get our comfort from God. When we fix our eyes on his truth, promises and love, and we obediently serving him regardless of situation, then we will rejoice in his faithfulness to pull us through. True peace comes from God, and we must keep this life in perspective, seeing it as something passing, that will quickly fade. Our eyes need to be on the eternal life with God, where there is no pain or persecutors. There is no time to live in the past. We must forgive, and lead each day with love in hearts. Let go of the past, it’s called the past because it’s the past. People aren’t perfect so forgive. You aren’t perfect so don’t expect perfections. Forgive and move on.  If you are struggling with that, pray over the person, your heart and the situation.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 14-15

We should be wise an obey God, who is our king.

When we please God, there is eternal life. He refreshes us, cleansing us of our sin but the sacrifice of his Son, Jesus.

 

NLT May 31, 2015

Thoughts of 2 Samuel 17: 1-29

You know those people who are only friends with someone because of what they can do for them? Or friends with the one at work that seems to have sway or influence with the boss? How about those that side with people they deem as popular or winners?

Ahithophel is what my grandmother would have called a “fair weathered” friend. He dropped David like a hot potato when he thought Absalom was gaining ground. We should never be guided by self-interest. We should always pray about everything and be sure to side with what is fair, just, right and godly.

But God had David’s back. He sent in secret operatives to listen and scheme, to lead Absalom astray and to warn David. God not only protected David but those that were helping him. God also took care of the traitor, when Ahithophel, when he hung himself. We must do what we can to be under God’s protection.

Remember, God always has the upper hand.

Thoughts of John 19: 23-42

Why would Jesus tell John to take his Mother as his own mom? Jesus had several brothers of his own including James and Jude. And by the way where were they? They may not have believed in Jesus’s ministry but how awful of them not to come and support their mom in such grief. Jesus’s brothers did not support his ministry at all. They were absent. This indicates to me that they were fed up with their Mom’s support of Jesus too. ( maybe some sibling jealousy with his celebrity status and “specialness”) in his mom’s eyes.

How then did Jesus’s brother James become the leader of the First Church in Jerusalem alongside Peter and others?James did a complete about face. He must have had a divine encounter with the fully risen Christ. No brother would lead a church and risk his life that didn’t show up at cross for support…unless something heavenly happened….Very compelling!

All of the prophecies in old testament are so specific – how could anyone have known that Jesus’s clothes would not be torn? Or would have been gambled for?…or how could they have known that no bones would have been broken?   How could they have known that Jesus’s side would be pierced? These were all prophecies handed down by God, hundreds of years earlier,  so precise in detail. The evidence that Jesus is the Messiah to the Jews is so obvious in scripture. How anyone can read old and new testament and not see how Jesus fulfills biblical prophecy in scripture is beyond me.

Did you see that they had 75 Pounds of Myrrh and Aloes? Wonder how much that cost? That’s a lot of spices. Plus, they laid Jesus in a NEW tomb. Did you see that Nicodemus also showed up? He’s the one Jesus taught about being “born again.” Obviously, that talk in the middle of the night convinced him that Jesus was special, the Son of God.

Thoughts of Psalm 119: 129-152

As I see the world in the state of spiritual corruption, with complete disregard for God’s laws, it makes me sad. I see a world that has turned from God with extreme selfishness, violence, obsession with sexual immorality and filth. An active believer, one that is really trying to leave this world behind can feel alone in this fallen world. But we must remind ourselves to stay on God’s path and remember he is with us.

2 Timothy 3:1-5

Ministry in the Last Days

3 But understand this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For people will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, savage, opposed to what is good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, loving pleasure rather than loving God. They will maintain the outward appearance of religion but will have repudiated its power. So avoid people like these.

Does this not sound like today? Our only hope is Jesus Christ. We can make a difference by our actions and how we live. We can be God’s beacons of light by living righteously and being inspired by the word of God. Rivers of tears have gushed from my eyes because of the terror and disarray of this world.  I have cried out to God over many of the martyred children.

The darkness of this world is getting darker every day, so it is up to us as true believers and followers of Christ to cast light and bring home any lost or misguided sheep. We must educate that it’s not just about the appearance of religion, it is about the Power of God.  It’s not about being part of a social group or having a sense of belonging to a religious organization. It’s about having a true heart for God, one that at the very center has forgiveness and love at it’s core. We may become overwhelmed by the world who disregards God, but we must put our faith in Him and keep our eye on the eternal ball.

1 John: 5-11: We accept human testimony. God’s testimony is greater because it is the testimony that he has given about his Son. 10 Those who believe in the Son of God have the testimony of God in them. Those who don’t believe God have made God a liar. They haven’t believed the testimony that God has given about his Son.

11 This is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is found in his Son. 12 The person who has the Son has this life. The person who doesn’t have the Son of God doesn’t have this life.

Many religions have elements of God but are missing that key ingredient above. If a religion does not believe the Jesus Christ is the Son of God, if they do not believe in his physical resurrection, if they do not believe he is the Messiah who died for all our sins, then they will come under God’s judgment. It is our faith in Jesus as the Messiah, that secures our eternal life and gets us through the darkness in this world. He is not just another prophet, he is the very one that reconciles you with God. He loves each and every one of us and does not want one of us to be lost. We must believe in God the Father, Jesus the Son of God and believe in the Power of the Holy Spirit over our lives.

If you lose this, you lose God.

 Thoughts on Proverbs 16: 12-13
Jesus was given authority by God to be the King of the Jews. As believers in Christ, we are grafted in. Jesus, who comes from God, who is one with God, detests wrong doing. He is a fair, merciful and just advocate for us. He loves those that speak truth, especially when that truth is about Gods word or love.

Anyone or anything, that detours you from reading a bible for yourself or has a scrubbed bible, be aware. Every cult and religions has elements of truth and the enemy can use what is meant for good for bad, to pull you away from God. It is only through knowing the word for yourself, that you will not be swayed by false teachers or doctrine. This bible journey is more than about just completing a task- it is equipping you so that you know what is from God and what is not.

NLT May 30, 2015

Thoughts of 2 Samuel 15: 23-16: 23

So we see a son that is  dishonoring his father greatly, by sleeping with all of his Dad’s left behind concubines. He thought that his advisors advice seemed wise, but it was not. How on earth did he think that he would get God’s protection by acting so vile and dishonorable to his Dad? What happened to Honor your Father and Mother. Out the door. It’s just another commandment out the door for Absalom.

Then, on the other hand, we see a man from Saul’s family follow David, throw rocks and curse at him. David did not retaliate or take matters in his own hands, he just kept going and did his best to ignore the insulting man.

Have you ever felt like someone was always taunting you or always on your case about something? Perhaps someone has it out to get you or maybe someone is gossiping about you. The best thing to do when people are throwing insults or spreading lies about you, is to ignore them and keep moving forward.

Then pray to God to stop the abuse and refine you or correct you if you have been wrong in anything. When dealing with people like this, it is the perfect time to perfect your  godly skills: practice being nice to someone who is not nice to you, sharpen your patience and practice self-restraint. It is when dealing with cursing or insulting fools that you can see how far you’ve come in your walk with God. You can also determine in what areas you still need to work on.

Thoughts John 18: 25-19: 22

We’ve heard this story a lot. We know that it was clearly staged for the crowd to scream for Jesus to be crucified instead of crazy Barabbas. The main thing we must get from this is that Jesus was born and came into the world to testify to the truth. All who love the truth recognized that what he said is true. They wanted to crucify him because he said he was the Son of God.

In other versions of Jesus carrying the cross, we see that he did not carry the cross by himself. Simon of Cyrene was noted by others as the one that helped Jesus carry the cross. It’s interesting to me that John did not record this because John was the only disciple who was at the food of the cross during crucifixion.

Thoughts of Psalm 119: 113- 128

The word is our hope. Meditate on God’s word and on his love for you, so that you will not stray or lose hope. We do not want to surround ourselves by evil minded people who live outside the word or commands of God. Help guide me Lord so that I do what is just and right and so you will rescue and protect me. Teach me ways pleasing to you. Give me wisdom to understand this bible and help me to serve you all the days of my life.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 10-11

Jesus is the only fair and just King, who has been given authority and judgment over the entire world. He has accurate scales seeing deep into our hearts. He sees all. Authority was given to him by God, and the Father set the standards for fairness of which Jesus will use to judge the earth.

NLT May 29, 2015

2 Samuel 14: 1-15:22

Joab realized how much the king longed to see Absalom but yet he went about it all the wrong way. Instead, of handling the situation directly and talking to the King about really letting Absalom back into his life, he did one of these lying scheme things. What’s up with all the scheming in the past few chapters?

So David let Absalom come home, but didn’t show the same kind of mercy and love that God showed him when he messed up so badly. What’s the point in letting your son come back to Jerusalem but never reuniting and reconciling with his dad, King David?

This seems so cruel. Did God not bless David after his punishment with a healthy son, Solomon? Did God not forgive David? David clearly has a heart issue. He is not showing love, mercy nor true forgiveness. By allowing Absalom to come back to Jerusalem but making him stay away was even crueler than keeping him away.

This continued alienation on the home front was like salt in the wound for Absalom, a reminder that David never vindicated what happen to Tamar by her half-brother. Absalom was treated like the only guilty party. No wonder he fueled with anger and hurt, which drove him to war against his Dad. You can see why many would be on his side?

This rift is part of David’s punishment for what he did. God warned him about more punishment to come.

None of us are perfect. We are all sinners. But Jesus tells us to forgive as we are forgiven. When we forgive someone, if reconciliation is safe, then we should fully embrace that person. Half-hearted attempts will not be received well and could foster even more animosity.

When Absalom was grieving over the situation and wanted some clarity, Joab refused to see him or talk to him. This is cruel too, after all Joab was instrumental in letting him come back.

Absalom retaliated with anger, lighting Joab’s field on fire. I’m sure Absalom was burning on the inside with fire over how he was being disregarded by all. Finally, Absalom was able to see David and bow low before the king and kissed him.

We can assume that something in the meeting did not go well or there was tension or weird feelings after it because immediately Absalom started plotting. He used his charm and extreme good looks, to win the hearts of the people of Israel. I imagine him like one of those long haired, tall, dark and handsome guys on the cover of the romance novels, like an Israelite Fabio.

Absalom charmed the people for four years to gain respect of the people. After going to Hebron, he had secret messengers stir up a rebellion against King David. He took 200 men with him to “supposedly” sacrifice to the Lord, but he had secret plans to plot against his dad, the King. Absalom was officially at war with David. David with his family left the city and wandered away from the soon to be attack.

See what taking matters into your own hands leads too. See what alienating people leads to. See what not communicating and resolving conflict leads to. See what not treating people fair and being just leads to. There is wrong all over this story in all directions and a mishandling of everything. It’s really clear to me that David mishandled all of this from the beginning. His original response to Tamar’s rape could have changed the entire course this family, perhaps even each one’s fate.  We should be so careful on how we handle conflict, especially family conflict.

Thoughts of John 18: 1-24

Peter loved Jesus and was willing to kill, to protect Jesus. But just moments later he protected himself by denying him. Does our faith and loyalty sway in the wind like this? Probably.

Jesus told Peter that he must not try to stop this because this cup of suffering was part of the Father’s plan. You’ve heard those that live by the sword, die by the sword.

Sometimes even if our intentions for protecting others are at the heart good, those actions could block God’s plan for that person. We are not anyone’s savior. Each of us has a savior that is fully capable of handling everything. You do not have to be the protector or provider. We should all be relying on God not man. If someone becomes more dependent on you more than God, then we have what can be deemed as idolatry. That’s not good. You are opening yourself up for a lot of heartache.  Our dependence is God.

Caiaphas without knowing it had prophetic speech. It is better for one man to die for the people, then all people to die an eternal death. Jesus is the final lamb.

We see that later Peter was not so bold, and he started to deny him. All of us have weak moments and slip ups, God is a merciful God. He is a God of second chances, especially when you repent and really work on pleasing him. He forgave Peter remember. Don’t be so hard on yourself….Go to God- he loves you.

Jesus’s abuse started when he was in the high priests hands. When we suffer, we share in Jesus’s suffering. When you are suffering, being bullied, mocked, in pain, or sick, remember to pray to Jesus, he  understands both mental and physical anguish.

Thoughts of Psalm 19: 97-112

Are we getting that the laws and commandments are very important? Seems they are pounding that over our heads in the last few Psalms! Jesus was the living word. He did not come to abolish the laws but rather show us how to live.

The word of God is something we need every day. It’s our daily bread, and it is the lamp that guides our feet.

Do you feel off , depressed, overwhelmed or lost? Are you in the word? Praying? Chances are you are focusing your energy on things of this world like problems or chaos instead of God. Get your nose back into the bible. Life is not easy. Life can be hard and sometimes we are barely hanging on. Sometimes we get run down, dead tired and sick. Sometimes we are flat out sick of people and how they treat us. But even when people are driving us bonks, disappoint us or if we are sick, we are to stay faithful in spirit, faith, hope and the word of God. His word is comforting. Remember, this is all temporary.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 8-9

You can’t take it with you when you go. What do you take with you when you go? LOVE! So be sure to keep that spiritual heart pure, which means focusing on righteous living which does not include lies or deceit.

We can make our plans but the Lord determines our steps. We can make plans but if they are not blessed by God and according to his will, our steps and path won’t be easy. He will put up road blocks like crazy if the plans aren’t his. We should always go to him to lead us, help us make plans and to guide our steps.

 

 

NLT May 28, 2015

2 Samuel 13: 1-39

Obsession about anything can lead to mental illness. Our focus needs to be on pure love which is found by focusing on God’s wants, desires for our life. When we focus our thoughts obsessively on things, then our mind can become a battle ground for the devil.

Amnon had a disgusting lust for his half-sister. His cousin Jonadab was as much to blame in my opinion at Amnon. He had an opportunity to speak truth and redirect Amnon to more virtuous thoughts. Instead he planted an evil scheme in Amnon’s mind to lure Tamar into the bedroom so he could rape her.

It is our responsibility if we see someone obsessing or thinking about sinful things, to redirect them or direct them to help. Too many times in this country, we do not get involved when our gut says someone is mentally ill or struggling with depression. This apathy has led to numerous mass killings and suffering. It’s our job to pay attention, report and to help save not only the mentally ill person but also those innocent people who could be effected by the wrath of a sick mind.

In my mind as I see the rape being played out, I think of how innocent Tamar was and how loving she was to help her brother only to be overtaken and deceived. She tried to speak God’s truth into him. After he committed this disgusting sin of rape, he raged with hate for her. I’ve seen show after show on television about rape and how it fuels anger, control and hate.

David’s reaction would certainly not be my reaction. I think David’s past with his adulterous affair and killing of Bathsheba’s husband, made him think he had no right to confront Amnon in a fatherly way. Our past sins and mistakes, should be a platform to share our experiences and to loving correct and guide. I can’t help but think if David had not of done what he did, if he had not been severely punished by God, if he was not carrying that guilt, would he have severely punished Amnon, maybe even had him put to death? After all, this kind of incestual rape is very similar to those disgusting pagan practices that God so wanted to destroy.

Absalom, like any protective brother, stewed over this incident being overlooked. There was no justice as he could see it and so he decided to take matters in his own hands. So he too sinned. He brought innocent people into plans, he schemed and sinned by murdering his half-brother. We cannot let injustice and hate for others overtake us. Absalom too had become so obsessed with his hate of his half-brother that he became similar to the very thing he hated. Hate and evil fosters hate and evil. Perhaps, he should have gone to the king and called attention to how unfair it was that Amnon did not get punished for his actions. He put much shame on Tamar. We should try to handle conflict and injustice in civilized manners.

Despite Amnon’s behavior, everyone still mourned his death. We too should forgive others for their sin. But punishment and discipline is necessary. An undisciplined son is no son of mine. David failed in his dad duties because of his own insecurities. There is no ranking of sin in the bible. All sin is displeasing to God.

Absalom fled to his grandpa’s house. So now David was alienated from two sons Amnon who was dead and Absalom who ran away and the child that died. Remember, part of David’s punishment for his adulterous murder was: your family will live by the sword and your own household rebel against you. We are starting to see this already.

Thoughts of John 17: 1-26

To glorify Jesus’s name, is to glorify the one who sent him Father in Heaven. Jesus has authority over everyone, your salvation is through him. The way to eternal life is to know God and Jesus Christ. God sent Jesus to earth and gave him specific work to do. Jesus and God existed when the world began. When you give yourself to Jesus, because God pressed on your heart, with the Spirit inside you, you obey the word of God. You will also glorify Jesus with your Christ like living.

Pray that as you do God’s work that he keeps you from the evil one. We must believe in God the Father and Jesus Christ and live according to that of which is pleasing to them.

Thoughts of Psalm 119: 81-96

Waiting on anything can make us dog tired. We can get impatient waiting on the Lord. When we are being persecuted, it can be a lonely place. But we are not to resort to taking matters in our own hand, or turning away from God during the wait. We are to stay faithful, prayerful and obedient during the waiting game. God’s love, promises and word sustains us during difficult times of wait and see. Without God during tough times in my life, I too would have died in misery. God sustains us during difficult times and pulls us through in his timing.

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 6-7

Be faithful and loving to God and others. When you aim to please the Lord, you have inner joy and peace. Life in general is more peaceful with others around you.

 

NLT May 27, 2015

2 Samuel 12: 1-31

Some trials and tribulations, some suffering and even some loss, are punishment for our sin. We should never judge why bad things happen, only God knows the real purpose.

Some hardship brings about growth and not all suffering is punishment. But clearly David disgusted the Lord by his flippant behavior killing a good man and taking his wife. His punishment was losing his child to a deadly illness. If we disregard God’s commands, then we will may suffer greatly.

What did David do? What was his reaction to this verdict?

  1. Confessed sin. ( God forgave him, but punishment still came)
  2. Begged God in prayer and fasted.
  3. He accepted his punishment and comforted Bathsheba.

God is a merciful God. After David accepted punishment, he blessed David and Bathsheba with Solomon. Accepting such severe punishment, is not always easy. But we must respect God, and his will for our life. The key is to repent and correct behavior.

Not sure what to think about David taking slaves. I guess he could have slaughtered them like he did in other battles. I am assuming he treated them well and fair. I do not think God would accept unfair treatment, since the Israelites themselves were once slaves. We must never forget where we came from, who we were.  We should always treat people kindly, fairly,  have empathy and patience with others.

Thoughts of John 16: 1-33

God always warns us, to prepare us for what might come. We don’t always listen, but he is a loving God who prepares his children. Our Advocate is the Holy Spirit who encourages us, teaches, guides and speaks to our hearts. The Spirit will also warns you,  tells you about the future. Just as the Holy Spirit has put on my heart the urgency to spread the gospel and be bold.

The world’s sin is that they refuse to believe in Jesus. If you refuse to believe in Jesus, then you refuse to believe in the one who sent him God. God has appointed Jesus over everything.

When you pray, pray in Jesus’s name, when you cast out do it in Jesus name. God will grant your request. ( if it be the will of God). We must believe that Jesus came from God.

We too are never alone. God is always with us too. We will have many trials on earth, but because we believe in Jesus and the one who sent him, we too will overcome this world- and live eternally with God.

Thoughts of Psalm 119:65-80

Dear Heavenly Father, teach me to have good judgment and common sense Lord. Give me knowledge in your truth and discipline me if I wonder from it. Help me to be united with other believers that put faith in action and will speak truth!

Thoughts of Proverbs 16: 4-5

All things, even bad, can be and will be used for God’s greater good and purpose.

People who are full of themselves will be punished.

 

NLT May 26, 2015

2 Samuel 9: 1-11-27

Shouldn’t we all make it our goal to show God’s kindness to others? David not only showed kindness to Jonathan’s crippled son, but he honored him by allowing him to sit at the Kings table, and he gave all Saul’s land back to him. He made a promise to Jonathan to care for his family, and he kept it.

I love how humble Mephibosheth was when David showered him with kindness, feeling so undeserving. It’s so fun to do great things for people who are grateful and humble.

Don’t assume you ever know someone’s heart or true intentions;  certainly don’t crucify them or shame them before you have all the details. Be careful of people who feed fear into you on any level. Fear can cause pain and big mistakes.

David sent his ambassadors to send condolences to King Nahash’s son, after his Dad died. Obviously, David had not built a relationship with the king’s son like he did his father. Ammonite commanders pumped fears into Hanun, and they shamed David’s men by shaving their beards and cutting their robes.

We should never let others fears or accusations have that kind of influential power over us. We should give people the benefit of the doubt. What was meant for kindness and good faith, soon turned into war between the two groups.

And we should never shame someone in public or humiliate them or talk down to them in front of others. Shame on you if you have shamed or belittled others and that includes your spouse!

Now we see that are sweet David has lost his way. First of all if you ask my husband, one wife is MORE than enough. David already gone against the idea of one man and one woman and has too many wives.  Now David spots  yet another beauty bathing, and this one is married. Instead of repenting for his lustful desires and staying loyal to his wives, he wants to COVET someone else’s wife. ( Adultery, Coveting and Murder that’s 3 commandments disobeyed…bad David bad!)

He brought her to the palace and slept with her. I’m guessing she agreed out of fear? Or perhaps she was flattered because he was the King. Not sure.

Then they get caught in action with this adulterous affair, because Bathsheba is pregnant. How could she be  pregnant when her husband is away fighting for the Israelites? David brings him back, tries to cover his lie by creating situation for Uriah to sleep with Bathsheba. Uriah was a good man and  a loyal soldier that he refused to have fun when his “brothers” were still fighting.

This loyal soldier was lied to, tricked and killed because of David’s sin and more sin…and more sin. So we see that David is very flawed. You soon will see that he repents and pays deeply for his sin.

Thoughts of John 15: 1-27

The proof is in the “fruit pudding.” The evidence if someone is a true disciples lies in their fruit or lack of.

When I think of fruit, I think of a seed or seeds that has the ability to become a tree. Then the tree will produce more fruit. I also think of fruit as nourishment. Sharing the word, sharing God is nourishing to those that hear. So those who produce fruit will bring the nourishment of God to others. Then, that nourishment becomes the seed that becomes a tree, which produces fruit for the kingdom, which will again produces more seeds. And because you are a disciple who lives and leads with the love of God and love of others, then the kingdom of God is grown! Lots of fruit trees and growth going on here! Lots of loving going on too with that many with a deep connection to God.

As disciples, he tests us, refines us, corrects us, teaches us and “prunes” us, so that we can learn and produce even more good fruit for him. When someone is not a giver, does not love others, does not share good news, does not study and obey the word of God, does not pray; then how can they be a friend and follower of Jesus?

They cannot. A true follower of Christ is someone with a humble heart who longs to obey and do good for God. Faith without works is meaningless. To be a true follower of Christ, two must go together. Our faith and love in God, moves us to do good works and to commission more believers.

If someone serves self or serves this world, then their allegiance is not to pleasing God. They have the wrong father and he’s not a nice guy! Now some will do charity work to be seen by men, but God knows our hearts and true intentions. If you and God are not one, there will not be fruit that helps the kingdom grow. If we are severed from the Father tree, the evidence of this is no true fruit.

We must remain in God, being inspired by his love to love others so that we can produce fruit and so that we are not thrown away and “burned.”

When you produce fruit, you are the Lord’s real disciples. That’s my goal! Hope it’s yours too.

Love is at the apple core. 🙂

If the world hates you, they hate you because they hate Jesus. Jesus has been rejected since the beginning. But we do not belong to this world, nor do we need to please the world. We long to please God by serving Him alone. If someone hates Jesus, then they hate the one that sent Jesus, the Father in Heaven. That is a scary place to be. Dust your sandals off and move on to the next one that will receive the message.

The Holy Spirit in all of us, will testify to the truth about the Lord.

Psalm 119: 49-64

The Lord: revives, comforts.

I mediate on pleasing you in thought and in actions and most importantly in love.

NLT May 25, 2015

2 Samuel 7: 1-8:18

God keeps his promises, Jesus is that offspring of David that will secure the throne forever. David had a great idea to build a permanent temple for God, his heart for God was pure. But David’s job on earth was to prepare the way for the temple to be built by clearing the land of violent people. So when the temple is built, it will be in more peaceful times. David realized that it was God who elevated him from a humble shepherd boy to king. He did not take anything lightly. He wanted to honor God with more than a tent. But notice God said, “Have I complained once? Wanting a house of cedar?”

We too should never complain but be grateful for all our blessings. When we have God, we should never want for anything. If we need anything, God knows and will provide.

Through our trials, such as when God brought his people out of slavery, what did God do? He made a great name for himself. Often during tragedy, during what seems like hopeless times, we find ourselves completely dependent on God, praying and calling out to him with heart. It is in those uncomfortable times that there is a platform for miracles and there is a push into the arms of the Lord. God can use what feels like curse to revive the lost or to heat up the luke warm. He can show his amazing work through people, through miracles and within our spirits.

I’m not sure why the horses had to be crippled, this to me seems more cruel than killing. Keep in mind there is much in scripture that takes place that God does not approve of, like marrying multiple women. That as you can see always causes conflict.  I’m assuming the horses needed to be crippled for feared the enemy would capture them and use them for evil. Chariots in those days were like missiles, it is comparable to us dismantling the missiles so that they could never be used.  Regardless, David was protected and backed by God and defeated many kingdoms.

We too when we walk in obedience and love for God, can be backed by God. Will life be perfect? I wish. But sin came into the world and until the Messiah comes back, we have to deal with the sin in this world. Life on earth will always have challenges, but with our eye on the eternal ball and hope in the Father, The son and believing in the power of the Holy Spirit, we can endure and find inner joy.

Thoughts of John 14: 15-31

For those that believe the law does not apply to them, that old covenant, the laws do not pertain to them, take a look closely at Jesus’s very own words. The summary is below.

If you love Jesus, obey his commandments. And he will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth.

Those who obey the commandments are the ones who love Jesus, which means they love the Father. Anyone who does not obey Jesus, who speaks on behalf of the Father in Heaven, does not love God. The enemy is the current ruler over earth, but he had no power over Jesus. To not obey the commandments on purpose, indicates that the true Father is not the one in heaven. When we slip, humble yourself, repent and correct.

So once again we see that faith includes works, because it is faith and belief that drives you to obeying the commandments and leading with love in all your actions.

Thoughts of Psalm 119: 33-48

  • Keep the commands
  • Ask for God to teach you and help you understand
  • Eagerly study and obey laws
  • We get life through the living word: following Jesus in thought and action.
  • Regulations are good, made out of love for us, not a burden, but to teach & reveal sin,  giving us God’s standards.
  • Belief in God, in the Son coupled with obedience out of love to the words and you will have eternal hope.
  • Meditate on Gods words and put those words into action.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 33

God loves a humble servant. He chose two significant figures in scripture from humble backgrounds: David who was a shepherd and Jesus who was a carpenter’s son. Even when in life we receive rewards or kudos, we should always be humble and be sure to give God glory and others who helped us along the way.

It seems like a big word to say “fear” the Lord because we love him so much and want to believe he is all loving, which he is.  We would love to never fear our Dad’s or our heavenly Father, but that is not  realistic.  But the truth is that like any Father, we must respect and fear our Father. That fear, will keep us in truth, living in love and pleasing him. Our security, protection and blessings all come from the Father. So we should have a healthy fear of him and out of that healthy fear for him, he will show us love like we have never seen!

 

 

 

NLT May 24, 2015

2 Samuel 4: 1-6:23

Here we go again, people trying to impress David with violence and taking matters in their own hands.  Those that do bad things to try to move up the ladder will eventually get what’s coming to them. Evil deeds will never go unnoticed. David killed the men that killed Saul’s son, Ishbosheth and publically shamed them by displaying their bodies at the pool of Hebron. I think he was trying to once again tell the community he did not condone innocent killing even if it was someone who hated him or considered him an enemy.

David began his reign at 30, just like Jesus began his ministry at 30.

David continued to go to God before going into battle. He never wanted to let ambition lead him or be over confident. He has continued to let God lead in most cases. He confiscated all the idols during battle. ( I’m assuming he destroyed them?)

God gave David exact military instructions for defeating the Philistine army by telling him to  circle them from behind and wait for the sound of the poplar trees to strike. God will in the end alert us with sound. When Jesus comes again, there will be sounds to announce.

God still today can lead you to exact instructions for doing things. We must go to him in prayer, listen as he speaks to us. He will often put strong thoughts in our minds, send us people to advise and speak to us through dreams and visions.

I have to say just as David was angry over Uzzah’s death, I too was sad that God struck down Uzzah. But David is responsible for this death because he allowed them carry the Ark in a manner which was not God’s precise instructions. Oxen  and carts are not predictable like the steady hand of a Levite.

They were not transporting the Ark as God instructed. It was to be borne upon men’s shoulders, and carried by Levites only, and those of the family of Kohath (Exodus 25:12-14; Numbers 7:9), using the poles prescribed. Failing to follow God’s precise instructions would be seen rebellion against God.

David may have been sad and even angry about God’s wrath against Uzzah, but it instilled in him that he must obey God entirely and never forget to have a healthy fear of the Lord.  David maybe King, but God is King over everything.

So David gets courage later to bring the Ark to the City of David. David loved music and song. He truly brought to life the idea of celebrating God. His wife, Saul’s daughter Michal, seemed to look down on David.  God did not condone all of David’s wife’s either. Just because he had many doesn’t mean God approved.

Perhaps, Michalwas embarrassed and worried about what people would think seeing a King dance around in the streets. Because of her contempt she remained childless the rest of her life. So it seems that maybe this damaged their relationship. Maybe David felt judged and misunderstood by Michal. Maybe he felt that Michal cared more what the world thought than what God thought. Regardless, this comment led to no descendants between Saul’s line and King David’s line.

  • Don’t resort to evil or dishonest practices to move up the ladder in life.
  • Do not put faith in Men, but In God.
  • Go to God in all pursuits first ask for specific instructions and guidance
  • Celebrate God. Celebrate life with song, musical instruments and dancing. Don’t worry about what the world thinks- praise him the way you want to!
  • Obey God with a Healthy Fear: Don’t get comfortable in modifications.(easier ways)
  • Don’t judge or belittle people- don’t worry about how things look to anyone other than God.

 

Thoughts of John 13:31-14: 14

God is glorified because of Christ, his son.

Prove to the world you are a disciple of Christ by your actions, love one another in all things. But never love people more than God.

If you know Jesus, then you know God. Jesus came to show us the living word. God spoke and taught through his son Jesus. God can live in us too through the Holy Spirit.

If you believe in the works that God did through Jesus, then you too can do even greater works through your faith with God’s power in you. When you do anything in Jesus’s name, you are bringing glory to the Father in heaven. Ask in Jesus’s name and it will be given. (it must be the will of God)

Thoughts of Psalm 119:17-32: This is a great Psalm that reinforces that we should continue to read the laws and put our faith in action through obedience and service. To ignore Old Testament, is to ignore the teachings of Jesus Christ, son of God.

Great prayer made from Psalm above: Open my eyes to see the wonderful truth in your instructions. Don’t let me wander from your commands Lord. Help me obey your word for they are wise advice. Help me understand the meaning of your commands, revive me and encourage me and others through your word.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15:31-32

Be open to constructive criticism without being defensive. Defensiveness is really ugly.

Accept discipline, for discipline brings about growth and a better understanding of what God expects.

 

 

NLT May 23, 2015

2 Samuel 2: 12-3:39

Anything divided against itself will not stand. The Israelites are not united but divided. Greed and power seem to be fueling division. The tribe of Benjamin, the one of which King Saul was born, is called a “ Ravenous wolf.” The tribe of Benjamin is said to devour prey and divide spoil.

There was great division between those that were loyal to Saul and those that loyal to David.

God is still with David, you can see that with 360 of Abner’s men had been killed, all from tribe of Benjamin. Remember Benjamin was the smallest tribe.

Abner warned Ashahel 2 times to stop chasing him. He tried to convince him to leave him alone, that he didn’t want to hurt him. But Ashahel refused to listen. So Abner defended himself and killed Joab’s brother. Joab would stop at nothing until he revenged his brother’s death. If we are warned by God or others, we should listen to the warnings.

Saul’s son Ishbosheth, which ironically means “man of shame” accused Abner with messing with Saul’s concubine. This set Abner off and in anger he claimed allegiance to David’s throne. We should be very careful about accusations. Accusations can really fire people up, ruin relationships forever. So be very careful not to accuse without much evidence. It may be better to not even to breach the subject to the person, but rather talk to God about taking care of it. There are always consequences from accusations, even if they are true.

Abner showed his loyalty to David by giving Saul’s daughter Michal back to King David.

Abner rallied troops around David. David feasted with Abner. Entertaining is always a good way to break the ice, get more comfortable with people. When Joab found out that King David had entertaining with Abner, he refused to believe in Abner’s authenticity and his rage over his brother’s death drove him to kill Abner.

David was sick over Abner’s death and disgusted by what Joab did. He knew nothing about it. To prove to all of Israelite’s that he had nothing to do with this, he fasted, wrote songs, walked behind procession, wept at graveside and cursed every generation of Joab’s family to have either open sores, leprosy, walk on crutches or die by a sword. The people believed David and were pleased with everything he did. If David’s actions had not reflected his words, this could have really sparked an even bigger conflict. We should make sure we are authentic and that are actions back up what’s in our heart. Sometimes we do need to prove that we had nothing to do with a situation.

Joab and Abishai were out of control. David called on God to repay the evil men for their evil deeds. It’s not our job to avenge; it’s the Lords.

  • Listen to warnings
  • Don’t accuse people
  • Leave Revenge and Avenge up to Lord
  • Show people through action your heart and true intentions
  • When people are beyond your control- Call out to God to handle them.
  • Be United not divided- find common ground instead of fighting.

Thoughts on John 13: 1-30

Yahweh( God) gave Yeshua ( Jesus) authority over everything .Yeshua came from God and would return to God. Jesus said, “ Unless I wash you, you won’t belong to me. “

Jesus washes us in many ways:

  • When we imitate Jesus we by obey the word of God found in Old Testament.
  • When we believe in the miracles and resurrection, we believe in Yahweh who sent Yeshua.
  • God’s son Jesus is the final lamb to wash our sins, to reconcile us with God.

We are to wash others feet too, meaning teach them how to be washed by Jesus through belief and imitation. We are to have a servant’s heart meaning we must Serve our master God in all things, in thought, speech and action.

Jesus was the messenger. God is the one who sent the message. Nobody is greater than God.

Jesus is speaking to the ones he has chosen. Not all of our hearts are clean enough to have a servant’s heart. There are many who fall into the Judas category and their Master is Satan.

Jesus is the Messiah. If you welcome Jesus as the Messiah, if you welcome his messages of truth which comes from the word of God, then you are welcoming and pleasing God the Father.

Some people eat from the wrong bread, the bread of lies, greed and twisted scripture. Sometimes things appear good, right and part of the group, but they are a wolf in sheep’s clothing. We must really study the scriptures and have close connection in prayer with God, so that we can see those among us that are not truly chosen but leading the flock astray.

Thoughts on Psalm 119: 1-16

Jesus read and taught from the Old Testament. He did not come to abolish the law at all rather to live it and explain it. He is very clear that we must be born again to enter the kingdom. Being born again is not just about faith but about action. Key phrases in this psalm:

  • Follow instructions: then we must know them
  • Obey his laws: then we must know them, keep his commandments carefully.
  • Walk only in his paths: don’t compromise with this world.

This psalm says: “ I will study your commandments. “ I started memorizing the commandments the first 10 yesterday. I’ve been quizzing the kids and Steve knows all of them too. If you are asked on the street by a reporter can you list the 10 commandments, could you list them? Make it a goal.

“Oh that my actions would consistently reflect your decrees-“

This is the key component with faith that must be present, and this is consistent with Jesus’s teachings. SO if we are to imitate Jesus we must know God, which means know his decrees and our actions must reflect our heart for Jesus, who pointed to God, spoke for God and came so we know God and are reconciled with God.

God is the same, he never changes. That means we must take very seriously his commandments. If he was willing to write them twice after Moses broke the first batch, then we know they are very important.

Thoughts Proverbs 15: 29-30

Do you want your prayers answered? Obey, Serve, Love, Pray. The more righteous in God’s eyes you become, the louder the prayer in his ears.

Do you look cheerful? Joyful? Smile at people, work on your friendliness to others. Make it your quest to brighten days. Be the one that delivers good news, compliments, encouragement—uplift!

 

NLT May 22, 2015

Thoughts on 2 Samuel 2: 1-2:11

The young Amalekite must have thought if he claimed to kill Saul that David would reward him or honor him. This of course was a lie because we know that Saul killed himself with no help from anyone, falling on his own sword.

Little did this lying man know that this lie would lead to death. He had misjudged David’s character and heart.   David had this liar, who seemed to brag about killing Saul put to death.

David had a heart of forgiveness. He did not harbor resentment for what Saul had done to him. I’ve seen bitterness for people extend even after someone has died. I’ve heard people bad mouth the dead and speak of how they are undeserving of a proper burial.

David had a pure heart and put thought and effort into making a nice funeral celebration for Saul and his sons. Think of the time and effort went into writing and composing a song and then teaching it to the people to sing. Most of us would not spit on the grave of someone who threw swords, alienated us from our family, forced us to live in caves and retreat to the wilderness or  took us from the comfort of our homes. But sweet David, he loved the unlovable, he loved Saul despite, just as Yeshua instructs us to do in New Testament. What credit is it to us to love the lovable? That’s easy.

I can’t help but think of my relationship with my Dad and how we came for circle. Most people who had the kind of relationship that I had with my Dad would not have put together a memorial service like I did. I remember spending a lot of time on the Memorial cards in design and when I took them to the printer, the printer said, “It’s so nice of you to print these in color. Do you know how many people don’t spend the money or time to make them this nice? Most people want them as cheap as possible.”

I remember spending time picking out pictures to frame, shopping for decoration and Dad’s favorite color napkins, wanting everything to look nice. There was a time in my life where I did not honor my Dad. In fact, there was a time in my life if he died, I would not have even shown up.  I have repented on more than one occasion for my disrespect and dishonor of my Dad. I know that I broke that ten commandment for a long time and I have grieved my actions.

I’m so happy that I trusted God and walked through my fear of letting Dad back into my life.  Dad and I forgave each other and had 5 years starting new before he passed away.  I spent a lot of  time and energy to plan, coordinate and make his memorial day special. I feel like that I pleased, as David did, my heavenly Father that day by making my Dad’s service special. It was quite beautiful releasing the balloons and playing the song by Creed “Arms Wide Open.”

We are to love even those with flaws, even those that hurt us in the past. Because we ourselves are flawed and hurt.   Treat others the way we would want to be treated. I loved Dad’s memorial service outside under the most beautiful oak trees, surrounded by flowers and in the background the horses seem to dance behind me as I spoke of forgiveness. It was as if the Holy Spirit made them dance as I spoke of a crowd that were still trapped in the bondage of unforgiveness.  I know my earthly Dad and my Heavenly father are proud of the time and attention I put into making Dad’s service nice despite our years of disconnect and fighting.

David made a habit of being obedient to God and letting God be in control. David made a habit of always asking God for direction even if the answer seemed obvious. We too should always go to God in prayer, even if we think we have it all figured out. We should always let love not hate or bitterness lead us to godly decisions.

Thoughts of John 12: 20-50

Some deaths in this life, like Jesus’s death, actually saves eternal lives. Many people who leave this life have an impact on others, so great that the death inspires a deeper walk with God, a search for truth and leads to salvation. Not everything makes sense. Some deaths seem from an earthly perspective senseless but God has a purpose for all things. He can use what seems bad for His Good. If one life causes another one to gain eternal life, then that death produced  two eternal lives with God.

What does it mean to serve Jesus? Jesus points to the scriptures and to God. So to serve Jesus means to have a heart for God and a heart for others. When we have a heart for God we want to please God by abiding as closely as possible by the word of God found in the Old Testament. These laws are written on our hearts but should also be studied and not forgotten.

“Father, bring glory to your name.” Jesus’s works on earth glorified Yahweh and brought to life his commands and how to apply these to life. Jesus never glorified himself, he pointed to his Father in Heaven.

What is the light in this world now? Psalm 119: 105Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. 106I have sworn and I will confirm it, That I will keep Your righteous ordinances.…

Yahweh left us the word, which is the light of our paths now. When we study it and more importantly apply the word, it will light our path. While Jesus was here, he was the living word, the light was present on earth. When he left, the word becomes the guiding light of lives and is the tool that the Lord uses so that the Holy Spirit can enlighten us, guide us and direct us.

Yahweh has the power to harden hearts, blind people so that they cannot see or understand.  Why some are enlightened and others are not, I do not know. But we know God knows hearts so he will reveal himself to those with  a heart that is ready to receive. We must pray out to God to open our ears, eyes, hearts and to help us understand the word of God. We must live to please God not to care about getting acceptance from this fallen world where Satan is currently the ruler. To follow Jesus means sacrifice and it takes real courage to leave the customs, practices and ideals of this world behind. We also must continuously examine scripture so that we can detect flawed doctrine at the drop of a hat.

When we see the miracles of Jesus, we are seeing the work of God through Jesus. When we believe in the messages of Jesus and believe the miracles, which are evidence of God’s work through Him, we are believing in the one who speaks through Jesus, we are believing in Yahweh.  He spoke not by his own authority but by God’s authority.

“And I know his commands lead to eternal life.”

To truly follow Jesus, we must know the commands and live by the commands of the one who sent him, his heavenly Father. So we must not disregard the Old Testament laws but study them and obey them out of love of both Yahweh and his son Yeshua.

Thought Psalm 118:19-29

What does it mean to be godly? To have a heart for God and people. If we have a heart for God and others, we will be kind, loving and obey the laws that are written on our hearts. Yeshua is the cornerstone that was rejected by many, mostly Jews. Today, we see many rejecting God period.  Bless the one who comes in the name of the Lord. Jesus (Yeshua) came in the name of the Lord and always pointed to his heavenly Father in all that he did. The Lord is faithful and loving. He knew we needed Yeshua to teach us, to show us how to love, how to live and how to keep heart at the core of laws. He loved us so much that he sent his only Son for us, so that we too could be resurrected from death that results from sin.

Thought Proverbs 15: 27-28

Those who are carefully obeying God, trying to walk with him are more careful in what they say. My grandmother used to say, “ Think before you speak.” We should all take a few minutes to think about what we want to say and the possible impact- or reaction, before we let it spew anything out of our mouths. Often it’s better to say nothing at all and to walk away and pray. Our mouths can be weapons of mass destruction—so we must be careful before we shoot out anything.

 

 

 

NLT May 21, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Samuel 29: 1-31: 13

Should David have agreed to back up the Philistines? It seems by the kidnapping of his men’s women and children, maybe not. God actually saved them from participating in a war against God’s people by causing the Philistine’s army officials to fear David and his men joining them.

But while they were still with the Philistine Army, David’s town was rampaged, their women and children were kidnaped by the Amalekites. David’s men quickly turned on him.

People in general can easily turn on people when things get difficult. So many times, we as humans, are looking to take revenge, get even, finger point and pass blame during desperate times, instead of trusting God. We should be careful not to turn on people in difficult situation, but to turn for God for assistance.

David found strength with God. He sought the advice of God instead of freezing up in fear or panicking. He was able to block the threats from his men and focus on getting advice from the Lord.

God led him to an Egyptian slave that was left for dead by the Amalekites. David nourished him until his strength returned. David could have turned his back on helping this suffering man, but his kindness resulted in the Egyptians help in the recovery of all the women and children.

We should never turn our backs on the suffering. Remember, Yahweh will lead us to people who will help us with our troubling situations. He is the great connector. We must never forget to have heart and love with all we meet, regardless of race or our personal agenda. Our selfish needs should never come before caring for others.

There was a group of David’s men that were too exhausted to go pursue the kidnappers. He did not push them too hard nor did he guilt them for not going. He gave them the rest they needed and they served a purpose guarding the equipment. We should not push people beyond their limits either. Just because we still have energy to go or do chores, doesn’t mean others haven’t reached their stopping point. David was sympathetic and thought of others. We should too.

A group of trouble makers did not want to share in the treasures they collected from the Amalekite’s. They thought that the men who stayed behind deserved nothing. But David’s heart once again was pure and he said, “share and share alike.” We can show God how grateful we are by sharing our fortunes with others. Generosity is thankfulness to God.

We can never be greedy or fail to share, even if we think we worked harder than others. Each of us have moments when we do more or less than others. We all have good energy days and not so good energy days. I love that David was willing to share the wealth with all the men, elders and other towns. None of us deserve anything, that is why we should share.

It breaks my heart that loyal Jonathan was killed. He was so sweet and true to David. What they did to the three sons and Saul’s body is disgraceful. But David showed honor to even Saul’s body, recovering it. Notice this is the first mention I’ve seen of cremation being an acceptable burial. David despite what was done to him by Saul, fasted and mourned. We too should show respect for those that have passed on, even if we had struggles with them in this life.

David had so many good qualities that we can learn from, truly a man of God. ( Yahweh)

Thoughts of John 11: 55-12: 19

I’m sure that Mary was so grateful to Yahushua (Jesus) for all that he had done for her, including raising Lazarus from the dead. Mary poured a years’ worth of oil over Jesus, anointing his feet.

Judas heart was not pure. He was a thief. Of course he could not see into the heart of what Mary did. All he could see was money wasted. We should always look to the heart of the matter, over common sense or materialism. Mary had a heart for Yahushua; he had more value to her than any perfume. Her love was poured out over her Messiah.

The miracle of Lazarus really fueled Yahushua (Jesus’s) ministry, so much that they wanted to kill Lazarus too. (Evidence of God’s work). The news spread about the miracle and people lined the streets proclaiming that Yahushua came in the name of the Lord. Old Testament prophecy was played out as he rode on a young donkey.

  • Pray to God for guidance, stay calm under attack.
  • Do not turn on people or point fingers or throw stones under stressful times.
  • Never deny someone who is suffering no matter who they are or what’s planned.
  • Share and Share Alike- Give to those even if you think they don’t deserve it.
  • Always show respect to the deceased, even if they have hurt you. Show honor.
  • Heart always trumps rules or common sense/responsibility.
  • Remember, God has a plan- even if it hurts, trust that he knows what he’s doing.

Thoughts of Psalm 118: 1-18

It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in people. Release your fears to the Lord.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 24-26

Do not get too sure of yourself, too prideful in your own abilities or treasures- he will humble you. God is a loving God who cares for those who are weak like widows. He delights in those that have pure hearts with pure words but despises those who are dirty on the inside, with evil or selfish pursuits.

NLT May 20, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Samuel 26: 1-28: 25

We must follow our hearts not the whispers or the negative influences of others. We should also not let internal fears cause us to take matters in our hands, with violence. David could have very easily ended Saul’s life that night in the tent. But he still loved Saul and loved God more, he wanted to prove to Saul once and for all that he did not intend to kill or hurt him. Maybe if Saul believed it, he would stop with this ridiculous paranoid escapade.

We see again, “Is that you, my son?” Saul had much internal conflict with David. Saul finally confesses sin to David. But you can’t blame David for not running back to Saul or believing him. If someone was trying to kill you and suddenly confessed and apologized, you too would have much suspicion.

Lots of vows and oaths going on here. Once again we should be very careful when we make promises or vows or curses. I must admit that one time, after someone attacked me in one of my weakest moments of my life while in a distraught mourning pain I said, “Mark my words the illness will come back with a vengeance because this person has been so mean and attacking me.”

Not even a week later, the illness came back with a vengeance and caused much damage. I wish that I had not said that out loud. But at that time I was in pure exhaustion, deep mourning, battling post traumatic stress and was being attacked at my weakest moment.  I had been doing just as God wanted me to do and staying faithful and true despite the enemy coming at me in various forms. I truly believe these kinds of words with God’s backing, have power. We must be very careful. My words were in a few days brought to life by God as punishment for the verbal abuse done to me. I saw it first hand.

I also believe if we are evil or wicked to anyone or if we fail to forgive or hold grudges and so forth; that this can be a contributing factor to health issues. That spiritual vision can be tied to our overall health: mental and physical.

Now Saul did the right thing banning all mediums and those who consult dead spirits. This would be similar to today’s mediums or those who channel, who claim to call on dead people who have died or psychics. However under pressure he was a hypocrite and did the very thing he banned.

God was not answering Saul. He was not speaking to him through dreams or through prophets. Saul became frantic with fear and took desperate disobedient measures and dressed in a disguise and went to consult a medium.

Normally, when spirits are called up by a medium, they are not the spirits of past loved ones but rather evil spirits that use lies and deceit to pull you away from relying on God to sooth you. These spirits are privy to information that can be used to trick you.

What we do know is that God strictly forbids witchcraft or sorcery of any kind. We also know that Saul did not die at the hands of the Philistines as the medium said; he died by his own hands. We also know that she saw and described a man. But Saul himself did not see him or hear him. There was half-truth in the mediums message. We know that the enemy twists truths, uses half-truths, he is after all the Father of Lies. Could God have allowed an evil spirit to pretend to be Samuel and deliver a frightening but remotely true statement? This makes more sense to me then God allowing his prophet to actually rise.

The Bible teaches that the dead cannot return to the living. After the death of his son, David testified that the child could not return to him. “But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me (2 Samuel 12:23).”

But in this case, God allowed something to deliver a death sentence to Saul. The Lord had left Saul and become his enemy for his disobedience. Our take away from this is to NEVER-NEVER consult a medium to consult the dead or get guidance. I have repented for doing this in the past! Never again will I ever do this now that I know the word of God.

When Samuel says that Saul and the sons would be with him, where is he? This indicates either Saul’s judgment is delayed because he died before Christ and he would be at a place of rest like Samuel until that day.

The Old Covenant people, before the Lord’s resurrection, went to bosom of Abraham when they died. It was located under the ground but not a part of Hell. Between Hell and paradise was a great gulf (Luke 6:19).

  • Do not let internal fears or outside influences sway against instincts to do what’s right.
  • Vows, Curses, Promises must be taken seriously-never used without careful consideration.
  • Never consult Mediums, Psychic or partake in any mystic type- witchcraft/sorcery.
  • Pray to God and Trust that he will lead and protect you. Be sure you are in favorable light with God.
  • Do not be a hypocrite and do the very thing you say is wrong.

Thoughts of John 11: 1-54

Lazarus was allowed to die so that the glory of God through Jesus would be revealed. Many believed in Jesus and came out when he rode the donkey into town because of  the miracle of Lazarus. God allows sickness, suffering and even death, so that he can do his work, much of which is bringing others closer to Him. (Saving souls)

I know that much of what we experience in life is painful. Jesus’s delay  to go see Lazarus was so painful for Jesus because he loved Lazarus. We see Jesus in tears over Lazarus death. I did wonder why Jesus was angry. The word angry indicated to me perhaps he was angry at peoples lack of faith or need for proof. If you got something different, let me know.  But some things even break God’s hearts, but for the greater good, some things must occur.

Jesus still today gives us power over death, this event was significant and symbolic in many ways. Belief in Jesus is our resurrection, which frees us to be with him in eternal paradise.

Martha believed that God would give Jesus whatever he asks. I love her faith, even after her brother had been dead for four days. Yes she backslid in faith a bit when she didn’t want Jesus to open the tomb because of the smell. We too should watch our faith closely and not let it sway like the wind.

I love that before he performed the miracle he thanked God for always hearing him. We too should thank God for always hearing us. He does!

After Lazarus was raised,  the Priest Caiaphas spoke prophetically without even knowing it.

Jesus, one man, died so that all of us had the potential to live. His gift is for everyone scattered all over the world. But of course it’s our choice to decide. Of course Caiaphas thought that Jesus should die to save the Jews; he didn’t realize that what he said had a much deeper universal meaning.

After Lazarus was raised from the dead, the priest were determined to put an end to this and kill Jesus.

Thought Psalm 117: 1-2

He loves us with unfailing love, we need to love him back that much too.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 22-23

In business or personal, seek advice from many wise, experience “been there done that” advisors. We can learn from other people’s successes and failures. Key is not just one – many!

Timing is everything. Pray for God’s timing to approach people, situations or plan anything.

 

 

 

NLT May 19, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Samuel 24: 1-25: 44

David is so sweet, he even felt guilty for cutting Saul’s robe. Most people who had someone hunting them down, would not think twice about killing them, much less feeling guilty about trimming his robe. David loved Saul, despite Saul. Frankly, David probably knew that Saul had mental illness. Saul would have waves of sanity where he would call David his son, “David, is that really you, my son David?”

I believe that many of us have waves of sanity and insanity. So many have personality disorders with waves of complete sanity, then in a blink of the eye some snaps.  In 2.2 seconds they go from normal to an anger outburst, manic episodes or anxiety session.

When I see this happening, I can’t help but to imagine a tormenting spirit similar to Saul’s coming and going. It makes sense that someone would have highs and lows if a tormenting spirit was coming and going. I believe based on scripture  that there is a huge spiritual battle going on, unseen forces. I also believe that we by our disobedience to God, open the doors for these attacks. God blesses and protects those who obey, praise, repent and are loyal to him. If you are stressed out redirect your energy to the Lord completely and humble yourself before him.

I do believe that Saul had fondness, deep fondness for David, but the enemy used Saul’s long time insecurities  to fuel jealous rage. It’s amazing that someone who was so good looking, taller than all the rest and blessed by God, would be so insecure. But the devil  has a way of using our weaknesses as weapons against us. It is only through our devotion, hope and love of God that we can overcome our weaknesses and personality flaws.

We should not take matters in our own hands, but to pray for the just and fair God to settle matters in his way and in his time. That means we should also not use our mouths either as weapons. The mouth and sharp tongue can be like a dagger through someone’s heart. Everything we do or say should come from a place of peaceful love and concern. If you are fueling mad, take a deep breath, pray on it before you say or do anything. Anger often clouds reasoning.

David was trying to prove to Saul that his heart was good by showing him the cut robe strand. There were no grounds for Saul to pursue David at all. David was trying to convince Saul, who practically raised him that he had no intentions to hurt him. We should as parents never be jealous of our kids success, but be proud and encourage them. Parental jealous can be really ugly and destroy relationships. I know that Jesse was David’s father, but remember after  killing Goliath, David lived as a boy with Saul. This relationship was more like a Father, Son relationship.

“From evil people, come evil deeds” – so true. We should search our hearts and always be more than, even when others are being less than. Remember, we score more points being nice to someone who is not nice to us. How hard is it to be nice to someone who is nice to us? Easy.

Interesting enough, Saul’s heart knew that David would one day be King. He knew that no matter what humanly thing he did, David was blessed by God and would not be stopped. Deep down Saul knew that he was wrong,  and asked David to spare his family and not to destroy Saul’s descendants when he became King.

How many of us have known selfish narcissistic cruel people like Nabal? There are so many people that could care less about others, even the suffering or needy. There are people who do not appreciate the things others do, take them for granted. I have had close encounters with people just like Nabal, who have no fear of God. In this life or the next, God will take care of the wicked.

David had a human moment of rage and certainly considered killing this cruel man for denying David and his men food and water. Luckily, God used the sweet- pure hearted Abigail to save David from acting out in anger. I believe God used her words, “don’t let this be a blemish on your record. “ God often sends sound minded people to warn us when we are fired up or about to make huge mistakes. We should be so smart to simmer down now and listen!

Abigail was rewarded for her generosity giving the bread and wine and sheep to David’s men.  We should always reward good for good. I love that Abigail did not let her fear of her mean husband hold her back from rectifying the situation. She risked her life, went behind her husband’s back to make things right. She saved many lives with kindness and courage.

Not only did Abigail have good sense to go to David but she had excellent sense not confessing to her husband when he was drunk. Trying to talk to a drunk, is never a good idea. The message is never received well, no matter the intentions. Remember that the next time you are trying to reason with a drunk. Forget it and regroup until morning!

Interesting enough, God took care of Nabal in his own way. Upon hearing what Abigail did, Nabal had a stroke and died 10 days later. God will take care of things for you, you do not have to resort to violence, murder or revenge. Do the right thing and pray to God for help.

Obviously David admired Abigail’s inner and outer beauty, so much that he married her. So she got richly rewarded for kindness and bravery.

Reminders:

  • Reward Good for Good. Be kind and generous. Do not turn people away.
  • Do not take matters into your hand. Pray for God to take care of matters. Show restraint
  • Be the peacemaker- even if you didn’t cause the trouble.
  • Be sensible. Listen to wise people and NEVER try to reason with a drunk!

Thoughts of John 10: 22-42

  • Sheep do work in Jesus’s name. (ministry, helping others, serve others)
  • Sheep listen to Jesus Voice. (read bible, obey strong thoughts, spot unscriptural doctrine)
  • Sheep follow/obey Jesus. (obedience and repentance)

Thoughts Psalm 116: 1-19

How can we repay the Lord for what he has given us and has done for us?

  • Praise the Lord’s name to all. Give credit to Him.
  • Keep your promises to the Lord and obey commands
  • Be a Servant for the Lord while on earth. What would he want you to do?

He has freed you from the chains of sin, through his son Jesus Christ dying for us. So we must rejoice, be thankful and serve him with all our heart and soul.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 20-21

We should never bad mouth or hate our parents. The bible says honor our mother and father. We should work hard to bring smiles and joy to our parents, even our adult parents. We should really think everything through and be sensible in all that we do. Common sense is an awesome thing!

 

NLT May 18th, 2015

Thoughts of Samuel 22:1-23: 29

We should always care for the health and safety of our parents at all costs. David took a risk by making a request of the King of Moab. We too should be willing to do what it takes to make sure our parents and grandparents needs are met.

Saul was reading too much into things. He was so paranoid that he thought his soldiers were being bribed by David. Saul was feeling sorry for himself. He wanted others to feel sorry for him too. When we do this, people usually don’t feel sorry for us; typically they just want us to zip it and get over it. Saul was really looking like a pitiful fool to his children and officers. Note to self: don’t assume anything, make accusations or have a pity party for one, table is ready episode, especially in front of people who work for you! You will lose respect and credibility.

Saul’s accusations and paranoia caused him to do the most horrific crime of killing the priest Ahimelech and his family. Saul’s men feared God more than they feared Saul. But Doeg the Edomite was evil.

How terrible was it that this innocent Priest and his family were slaughtered because Saul was out of his mind? Paranoia is not of God. When we are fearful or feel like we are leaning on the side of paranoia, call out to God about it. He will calm your fears. I know when I was fearful to travel, God gave me a date that I was not to travel on. I kept hearing August 8th, August 8th in my mind. That was the date that we started bombing Iraq. The Lord was letting me know that I would be at home, not traveling when the first bomb was dropped. My fear and paranoia about traveling was pacified.

Luckily, one of Ahimelech’s sons Abiathar escaped. David felt instant remorse and was willing to lay down his life to protect Abiathar. When we have any involvement in someone being hurt, even if we are not the cause of it; we should have heart in the matter. We should do what we can to rectify, make it right and take responsibility for our part. Pointing blame to others is never comforting. But when David vowed to protect the priest’s son with his own life, now that was far more comforting than just venting about Saul.

Like David, when we are unsure about anything, we should go to God in prayer not once but as many times until we feel comfortable. Then, you should continue to include God in your plans as they advance. You will get guidance, clarification and confirmation in some form or fashion. God loves it when you include him in everything.

God will always send messengers to encourage you and to inspire you to stay faithful in God. Jonathan was that special encourager God sent to David. You have those encouragers too. Sometimes they are complimenting strangers, friends or family members. God knows exactly what you need and wants you to know He is with you and he loves you.

Oh, Saul was so selfish. “Finally someone is concerned about me.” We are to fight this selfie world. Our goal is to be selfless like Jonathan, not selfish like Saul. Selfishness is the work of the devil. The bible says that in the end of times, people will be lovers of self, and here we are in the age of the selfie. Watch out and BE READY!

God can  distract your enemies, throw them curve balls to get their eyes off you. There is no doubt that God diverted Saul’s  attention away from David to the Philistines.

Few Points from Reading Today:

  • Include God in all decisions, pray multiple times for guidance and continue to include…on day to day
  • Paranoia and over reactions are the work of the devil- they will lead to bad decisions. Feeling off- PRAY
  • Think of others first:  do not let selfish pursuits drive your life. Pleasing God should drive everything.
  • Know that God will send people to encourage you. Be that encourager to others including strangers, friends and family.

Thoughts of John 10: 1-21

Jesus is our Shepherd, and he is also the gate. He alone decides if you will be reconciled with God or not. Jesus is the judge to decide if you are in heaven or not. If you listen and obey his words he will lead you, protect you and care for you as His own. If you are true sheep of God, you will  NOT listen to false prophets or anyone, even if they perform miracles and speak of peace and love. To know the word of God is to know God and gives you the ability to spot the fake a mile away. False doctrine will jump out at you.

God’s flock can spot a phony and only listen to his voice. Those that come in through Jesus will be saved. Jesus laid down his life for yours. Phonies point to themselves or away from God or they twist the word of God or they substract or add to the word of God. Fakes are only concerned with their own pursuits, not God’s laws or words.

If you know the truth of God yourself, you will be better equip to spot a Wolf in sheep clothing. We are to help Jesus bring in the other sheep that have not yet come. He does not want one to be lost. Some people today still think Jesus was a mad man. But some see him for what he is the Son of God. Which will you choose?

Thoughts of Psalm 115: 1-18

Idolatry must be exposed and demolished! No form of idolatry is acceptable to the Lord.

We should not bow down to statues or pray to anything other than Jesus or God.

We are not to put anything in our life before God. Our loyalty is to the Heavenly Father first.

Many things can become idolatry: work, kids, family, volunteering, Church leaders,  Christian celebrities and authors, sports, hobbies, addiction and more.

Absolutely nothing should be before your allegiance to God.

Get rid of an idolatry practices in your life. He will bless those who obey and fear him.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 18-19

Avoid fights or starting fights at all cost- blessed are the peacemakers. Do not take the bait when someone is trying to start a fight and certainly don’t go picking on someone. It’s better to keep the peace, even if you are super annoyed. Pray and walk away. Work hard as if you are working for the Lord in all that you do.

 

NLT May 17th, 2015

Thoughts : 1 Samuel 20: 1-21:15

Listen to that inner voice; that gut instinct and obey it. David did and it helped save his life. Anytime, I’ve ever ignored a pressing thought or gut feeling, I’ve lived to regret it.

We should all be good friends like Jonathan. He was not selfish at all, but driven by love for David. He could have easily started thinking about how he would lose his seat as King if he helped David advance. Selfishness leads to destruction. We have to fight it.

Saul spoke so terrible to Jonathan. We should be careful, even in anger what we say to people especially our children. Words are like spears through the heart, even after we say we are sorry the words linger in the hearts and the minds of those we hurt.

Needs of the people, matters of love, should always trump rules. God has always been a loving God who wants to care for all of his children’s needs: healing them, feeding them- even if it’s on the Sabbath for instance.

If you are doing something out of love, then God would be able to see your true loving intentions. We cannot let rules, regulations become strongholds and dominion over us, where we disregard someone’s needs or suffering due to following a rule.

I found it interesting that 5 loaves of bread were asked for by David. Remember, God took 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish on one of the miracles during his ministry.

How ironic was it that the very sword that was going to be used by Goliath to kill David was given to David to protect him from King Saul? I can imagine how David stopped, looked to heaven and back at the sword, taking this as confirmation and a sign, that the Lord was with him.

This sword served as a reminder that no enemy, regardless of how powerful would touch him. God gives us signs that he is with us and that he has out back. Are your eyes open to seeing those signs? Nothing is by chance, everything is by God.

How cleaver was David to act insane? I was thinking if I ever get in a bind, maybe I’ll act crazy and drool! Yes this was one of those lying acting jobs that saved his life. David was quite talented a musician, an actor and a war hero! He was a true celebrity!

How weird is it he is being chased by a madman and is escaping acting like a madman? Life is crazy isn’t it?

Thoughts John 9: 1-41

Often times the innocent suffer but God is glorified by their grace, the miracles or the families faith during those struggles. I know for me that my walk has deepened by witness others struggle and finding myself in continuous prayer. Have you ever thought about how often God chooses the most radiant, resilient Christians to battle some of the most terrible things? We sit back amazed out how strong they are, and how faithful they are during their “Job” like battles.

These people and families become a radiant light of the Lord, teaching us about dependence and hope in the Lord in the midst of struggles. Not all suffering is a result of sin. Some suffering is a result of sin, but God is making it clear that there is many reasons why people are born a certain way or suffer in this life. We cannot judge or even begin to figure out why God allows certain things to take place. But what we do know is that God’s ultimate goal is to bring us back to him fully and to show his love.

“ I was blind, and now I can see.” I love the song amazing grace. I too before I read the scriptures was blind, and I thank the Lord for opening my eyes to the truth of the gospel.

Pray for those who are spiritually blind. It’s time for us to really ramp up on our prayers for the lost, asking the Holy Spirit to nudge at their hearts while the gate is open.

The blind man that received sight became frustrated because the Jewish Leaders refused to listen. Some on earth are just too dense, their hearts are hard and their ears are shut. It has always been frustrating and at the same time sad, when people refuse to see Jesus for who he was not just a prophet but the son of God.

“I entered this world to render judgment- to give sight to the blind and to show those who think they see that they are blind. “

Some are so stubborn that they think they see, know the truth, yet they are still blind. This honestly scares me. I know that many who sit in church or claim to be Christians are what the bible considers “luke warm milk.”

Revelation 3:15-17 NIV I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.

We cannot make excuses for not knowing the truth or obeying the truth. Many reformers lost their lives to get a bible, (un-scrubbed bible) in your hands so that you would not be deceived, so that you can read the word of God yourself, so that the Holy Spirit would feed your soul with the truth, nothing but the whole truth. Many over the years have tried to keep the truth from you, so that your allegiance would be to the church or to leaders of the church instead of God.

As I look back on my life in what I thought I knew, as I look back on what I believed or thought was right, as I look back and see how I lived, I find myself in thanksgiving. I thank the Lord in tears for bringing me to the truth before it was too late for me.

I have always had God, I have always claimed to be a Christian, I have always had an element of prayer but I was missing the truth. Now that I have the truth, that truth guides me and brings me to thanksgiving, continual repentance and I pray that God continues to refine me in his image.

I have to tell you that I feel so blessed that I did not die when I was in the dark. I feel different and can know grasp the concept of being “born again.” How many others, those that I love still don’t get it? PRAY!

God has ramped up delivering truth to lazy Christians with his Bible A.D series on television, Movies like Son of God and other spiritual movies like the War Room. We see that God is using mass media to tell the world about Jesus Christ before he returns, something significant happens or that individual’s life ends.

Last night, I watched the Bible A. D and was reminded of how amazing it is that the gospel of Jesus even exists. The disciples were spreading the gospel in such a violent time, it is only through God’s plan that the message did not die because of fear of death. How amazing is it that Christianity was birthed and sustained for 1,000 of years, started by few, and quickly after the Holy Spirit was poured out went to thousands.

Acts 2:41 (CEB) “Those who accepted Peter’s message were baptized. God brought about three thousand people into the community on that day.”

The Lord said, “But you remain guilty because you claim you can see.”

Pray for those that think they see, but don’t. It’s so important that each of us kills our old self, is born again, imitating Christ in thought and action. REPENTANCE is a major factor!

Thoughts of Psalm 113:1-114:8

Never forget that Jesus is the Rock that the Spring of Life flows from…When we accept Jesus, the spring purifies us, washes away our sin and with Jesus’s help we continue to be renewed and washed daily…..If Jesus is the solid foundation in your life, then your eternal fate is solid too. He rescues us from all. This life is temporary.

“ He turned the rock into a pool of water; yes, a spring of water flowed from the solid rock.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 15-17

Why is it that Steve and I love this one—“ A bowl of vegetables with someone you love is better than a steak with someone you hate. “Does it not sound like a children’s poem? Funny but so true.

Be Happy! Show the world the light of the Lord within you! Smile at strangers! Be more than those around you…inspire them with your love and happiness.

Getting comfortable is not a good thing. We should never take the Lord’s blessings for granted but to always live with a healthy admiration, respect and fear of the Lord. This fear will drive us to repent and change and purify our hearts.
NLT May 16, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Samuel 18:5-19: 24

Jealously can cause rage. We should all be happy for others, encourage them and fight against any feeling of jealousy. Saul’s rage was because he felt threatened by David’s popularity. David’s jealousy caused an evil spirit to overwhelm him.

Have you ever become so focused on someone’s actions or lack of actions or a situation or a fear that you felt consumed, unable to think or fixate your mind on anything else? Have there ever been times where you have seen others or yourself become like a “mad man” around the house?

No matter what peaceful thing someone does for you, do you seem to be annoyed? I’ve seen many marriages where one spouse seems to pick on everything thing the other is doing.

(Like Saul’s arrows we too can throw arrows like personal attacks. Our minds can throw arrows of judgment or finger pointing or digging comments). Even as David peacefully played the harp, Saul still burned with anger against him, trying to kill him with spears.

When someone is oppressed by an evil force, nothing you say or do can have an impact, other than prayer and staying obedient in thought and in action to God. Try not to retaliate, it only adds fuel to the fire. Leave retaliation and punishment to God.

When you are protected by God, even a raving mad man will not be able to harm you.

Saul in his heart was evil, he plotted or schemed of ways that David might die. He sent him into war so that he would not have to give him one of his daughters in marriage.

David on the other hand had a pure, humble heart. He did not fill worthy to have Saul’s daughter in marriage, he was a simple shepherd boy from a humble background. So despite David’s celebrity status, he stayed grounded by the Lord.

Everything David did was successful. This terrified Saul and fed into his fears and further fueled the spirit that tormented him. David was able to beat Saul’s requirements in war to win Michal, Saul’s daughter in marriage. Nothing can stop you if God is with you and on your side.

But note that life was not always easy for David. Life is not perfect just because you are loyal to God and God’s got your back. Trouble will come, but God will get you through.

The more times Saul sent David into battle in hopes he would die, the more famous David became. The more famous David became, the more determined Saul was to kill him.

Jonathan, Saul’s son was a true friend to David and warned him about his Dad’s desires. Jonathan also spoke sense into his father and at some point Saul even vowed not to kill David. Michal, Saul’s daughter and David’s wife, was also willing to lie to protect David. Both Jonathan and Michal were willing to risk everything to do what was right in God’s eyes. Their allegiance was not to their earthly father, Saul but to their heavenly Father. They knew in their heart David was not deserving of death. Pappa Saul had gone cra cra—

Some lies protect God’s people. All lies are wrong, but some lies at the very heart of them are meant for good. Those lies, even if they are wrong, can be used by God for his greater good and purpose.

God has the power to allow a tormenting spirit to consume you or leave you. God has the power to pour the power the Holy Spirit into you, even giving you gifts like the gift of prophecy.

We must keep our eyes and ears on God, be obedient, repent and keep love in the heart of everything. To disobey God by going our own way is opening the door to evil, to depression, to oppression, to obsession and to a possible spirit of torment.

Themes: Loyalty should always be to virtues of God- what is right. Do not support someone just because they are family if you know they are clearly wrong.

Theme: You have the power to open the door to God’s protection or blessing. You also have the power through your thoughts, action and focus to open the door to evil. Your choice.

God will protect you. He will send people, prophets to speak truth into you, to protect you from evil. Trust in him. But don’t expect life to perfect- the world is full of sinners.

Thoughts of  John 8: 31-59

A true disciple of Christ: Remains Faithful to the Teachings of the bible. A true disciple searches for truth and obeys it. A true disciple does not take a Pastor, Pope or teacher at their word, but rather reads an un-scrubbed bible.

How will we know the unlawful one, the antichrist, if we do not read the truth for ourselves?

How will you know if you are being led astray?

The church and doctrine have been under attack by devil for a long time. True doctrine has been changed, modified and the scripture has been twisted. So our only hope is to Study the bible ourselves and obey the Truth.

We must be open to leaving behind all that we’ve heard, been taught, any preconceived ideas that the world has taught us. If we learned from Grandparents or parents, even if we loved them with all our hearts, we must be willing to trust God more. We must trust that God will teach us truth on our quest for truth. I have left much behind that I heard from family. I have had verbal lashing for rebuking what family members believed.

I have but one truth teller, one Savior, one Teacher, One Father, one Rabbi- That is Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

My faith is in the word of God. My loyalty is not to the truth family fed into me, but into the truth God is giving me on this bible journey.

When we read, light will be shed into your spirit. You will find that what you thought was okay is totally wrong. For example we are not to pray to dead people, we are not to pray to statues, we are not to let anyone other than Christ/God intercede our prayers. We are not to bow down or idolize Saints like Peter. Read what Peter said. Peter today would be horrified if he was given any glory, if anyone other than Jesus was receiving glory. Peter opted to be crucified upside down because he was not worthy to die the same death as his Savior Jesus. He would be horrified if people prayed to him.

Acts 10: 26 25When Peter entered, Cornelius met him, and fell at his feet and worshiped him. 26But Peter raised him up, saying, “Stand up; I too am just a man.” 27As he talked with him, he entered and found many people assembled.…

When people tried to honor Mary what did Jesus say, “

Luke  11: 27

27While Jesus was saying these things, one of the women in the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You and the breasts at which You nursed.” 28But He said, “On the contrary, blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.”

God is the word. We are not to honor anything or anyone other than God.

We are not to worship or pray to angels either. Pray and worship God only! You can pray to God to send angels. But you are not to pray directly to angels, Not saints, not Mary. Your sins are not forgiven by any man, only Jesus Christ.

Only God intercedes on our behalf. Only God needs the glory. When I read the scripture for the first time, it was like light bulb after light bulb going off. I started getting clarity on attacks we’ve had spiritually in my family. I realized how we opened the door to much grief by our disobedience to God through our actions. Finally, the scripture set me free, giving me a standard of which to live by. I couldn’t believe how long I was living in darkness, without knowing the truth, understanding the truth. I couldn’t believe how long I had seen so called Christian practices and thought they were neat or ceremonial—only to see that the wrong “Father” had been teaching those false doctrines.

I realized that some of the most recognized Christian faiths have had the hands of the wrong Father in them, twisting the scriptures. Of course the devil himself had a hand at changing one fo the ten commandments. We know from scripture that idolatry is the one of the things that infuriates God the most. So we see so mainstream, accepted sectors of Christianity removing the commandment and incorporate statues and idol worship, the very thing that God abhors. The church has even changed the Sabbath to Sunday instead of the last day of the week, Saturday.

If we do not know the truth, read the truth, then how will we be able to know for sure that we will not fall under the spell of the anti- Christ if he comes in our life time?

He will be cleaver in appeasing masses and telling people what they want to hear. But if we know the truth first hand, if we practice and believe it—then we will be able to spot the phony.

We can’t pray or honor angels? Seriously Shea? NO don’t

See what John said…

Revelation 19: 10

Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said, “No, don’t worship me. I am a servant of God, just like you and your brothers and sisters who testify about their faith in Jesus. Worship only God. For the essence of prophecy is to give a clear witness for Jesus.”

But it is that truth and obedience to truth that will be the security blanket we need. Now is the only time we have, while the gate is still open, we must cement our faith in Christ and our understanding of the word.

Do you have room in your heart for the messages of Jesus? Are you making time for the truth to embed in your heart? Relationships are about spending time with someone. Spend time with Jesus. He is the living word. So knowing the word, living it is a great way to build that relationship.

“But you are following advice of your father?” (Could this be prophetic that some will follow an evil one who puts himself up to be a Father? Could the antichrist come under the guise of a peaceful Father?” My research in scripture says yes.

Be aware of a wolf in sheep clothing. Even if someone who appears to be holy performs miracles, do not believe. Remember the Sanhedrin looked holy but they were dirty on the inside and crucified Christ.

Remember, Jesus warned us that many will come and claim to be God and perform miracles. Do not believe the miracles or the lie, or take a mark of the beast, even if it appears under the guise of peace, unity and helping of the poor.

I can’t help but think of those that call their spiritual leaders in the church, Father. There is but one father: the Father in Heaven. To have allegiance to anyone other than God, makes your father the devil. We are to imitate only Jesus and add nothing or subtract nothing.

The proof is in the pudding. How are people living? Which Father are they imitating in their daily pursuits?

So if God is your real Father, then to know Jesus is to know God, to imitate Jesus is to please God. SO if you are not living for Jesus as Jesus, then who is your real Father? Yikes.

If we don’t listen, then the bible says we don’t belong to God. That fear alone pushes me to know God, to love God and to obey God.

Jesus said that he was born before Abraham. He is: I am. He is saying he is God.

Psalm 112: 1-10

We should live this life as if it was temporary and keep our eye on the eternal goal. We should live God, praising God, continually thank God and we should share God with our friends and family. When we live knowing that this life is fleeting, we are merely passing through, the things of this world do not matter, even the sufferings to do not destroy our spirit because we trust in Jesus. We know that our eternal life, our ultimate destination is with Him. Even though the storms of this world are hard at times, our anchor keeps us grounded, focused on the one who will save us.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 12-14

Those that Mock God will most likely stay away from you because they do not want to be corrected. Smile at people —show Christ to others with your face, smile and heart for others.

A wise person is hungry for knowledge- that’s us!

While a fool feeds on trash- that’s the world! ( porn, foul jokes, bad movies, rough music, making fun and so on)

 

NLT May 15, 2015        

Thoughts on 1 Samuel 17: 1:18-4

While bigger, older, tougher soldiers cowered at this 9 foot giant, David had faith in the Lord.

This ruddy, modest, humble, short Shepherd boy  boldly spoke to King Saul, “The Lord who rescued me from the claws of the lion and the bear will rescue me from this Philistine!” Interesting enough he brought bread. ( symbol of the truth he brought, Faith in God most high. )

Are you this confident in all situations? If you have 9 foot ceilings or higher in your home, look at them. David was just a boy…and he did not let an armored giant intimidate him. I can assure you most of us would have passed out cold just at the thought of taking on Goliath. David’s humble heart and tremendous courageous faith is no doubt why God hand picked him.

Little David was willing to lay down his life for others, for God’s people. Much like Jesus was willing to lay down his life for us.  David had the faith in the Lord; that he would not lose his life no matter how powerful this Goliath seemed. Jesus too did not lose his life, but had eternal life and gave us an opportunity for an eternal life. God always seems to pick people from  humble, modest backgrounds to do big things.

How many rocks did it take for him to kill Goliath? You got it, just one!

How many rocks save all of us? You got it just one, Jesus. So many analogies in the bible about rocks, they are so significant. They are used to symbolize judgment, punishment and also salvation. Our faith in Christ should be solid as a rock. Jesus is the rock and the cornerstone of everything.

David had an opportunity to boast about his abilities. He could have easily bragged about killing bears and lions with his hands to Goliath. But did David boast and take credit for anything? No, under pressure and the threats of Goliath, David glorified the Lord. “You come to me with sword, spear and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies- the God of the armies of Israel, who you have defied. Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut your head off. “

So when we go into battles or unchartered waters, we do not go on behalf of ourselves but we go for God and with God. With God as our weapon, we will never lose. And when we come out victorious, glory be to God, never ourselves.

Jonathan, Saul’s son and David became instant friends. The two became true soul brothers and Jonathan will save David’s life on many occasions. Jonathan was not cut out of the same mold as his father Saul, who became under the spell of tormenting spirits.

Thoughts of John 8: 21-30

Who do you belong to? This world or Jesus? We too should do only what pleases the Lord. It is difficult at times to not go along with this world. Peer pressure is extreme and truth is twisted.  People will label you evil if you don’t go along or sympathize with or have tolerance for non-biblical views or ways of life. To abandon the worldly views, to refuse to serve self, but to serve God takes much sacrifice in this life. Are you willing to take the heat to avoid the eternal heat? Remember we can love the sinner but not love the sin. We can love but not condone.  To know God’s standards, everyone should read the bible. I encourage you to tell everyone to read the New Testament now before September. They need to know the truth. How will they know if they are being deceived, even from those that appear Holy but who are lead by the wrong father? The only way to know for sure, is to read the truth for yourself. I shutter to think that for years I did know the truth for myself. I lived according to what people told me or what I thought seemed right or wrong–off of a feeling or thought. I thank God for the Holy Spirit pushing me to read the truth so that I would not be deceived or swayed against the word of God. READ the entire new testament if not anything else! It may save your life.

Thoughts of Psalm 111: 1-10

Do not forget the sacrifice that Jesus made for you. Do not forget the miracles and blessings that God has done for you already. Remember! Never forget! Do not take Jesus Christ for granted or any other gift or blessings. All that we have, all that we are is because of God. To show gratitude we serve others, share the gospel and thank God in word, action and obedience. True wisdom is having a healthy fear of the Lord, not fear of rejection of men. Your allegiance is to God and God alone.

Thoughts of proverbs 15: 11

Heart. How is your heart? Purify the heart. Have a heart for God and for others. That is our daily mission to make our hearts more Christ Like. It’s a daily task- a constant pursuit to keep love at the core of our being—to never let the enemy embed in our hearts in the form of jealousy, greed, hate, grudges, lack of forgiveness, judgment, immorality, lies, adultery, corruption  or lack of faith….the list goes on….

NLT May 14, 2015

1 Samuel 15: 1-16:23

When we disobey and refuse to obey  commands, we disappoint God. God can choose us to do something, even anoint us to do something, but we still have a choice to go his way fully, to obey half-heartedly or to do what we want to do despite.

Saul let power  go to his head. What’s up with making a monument of himself after being scolded by God? Tells me that Saul is really losing it.

When God tells us to do something, we have to do it exactly, not modify it to what feels comfortable or what seems right or practical in our eyes. It may have seemed logical to save these pagan animals to sacrifice for God, but that is not what God ordered.

“Obedience is better than any sacrifice, and submission is better than offering of fat of rams.”

This reminds me of a time when we decided to give up something around Easer.  We all decided to give up something, until Easter.  Braxton gave up candy until Easter. I gave up coffee and chips. Steve gave up alcohol. Slade refused to give up anything.

I was annoyed that he wouldn’t participate and I told him, “You need to think of something for God.”

He appeared to disregard what I said. I was disappointed in his lack of participation.

Braxton at one point accidently put candy in her mouth without thinking. All I did was look at her and said, “Braxton.” She began to cry and spit out her skittle. She cried not because she had to spit out the candy but because she knew she had promised God. But my heart hurt to see baby girl cry so hard out of disobedience.

So what about Slade? To my surprise, one day I received an email from the teacher at school.

———- Forwarded message ———- From: Mrs. H> Date: Tue, Mar 19, 2013 at 3:53 PM Subject: you would be so proud… To: Shea Brewer > He was building something today with rocks on the playground. He said you told him to build something for God. He started making a castle and soon it had evolved into something different. He created Jesus’ tomb with a cross on top. The tomb was guarded with 2 soldiers and a big angel stood in front. When other people came by and asked about it, he shared without hesitation. I was very impressed to see this precious side of him and his faith.

As I read this email, my heart filled with love and my eyes filled with tears. I had it wrong. God was not looking for a sacrifice. He was looking for us to give our heart to him and to share Him with others. When Slade built this tomb of Jesus on the playground at school, he was giving God his time, talent, energy and love, while sharing Jesus with others. This 2nd grader had it right. Our lack of coffee, alcohol and candy meant nothing compared to the love and ministry work Slade did on the playground. Slade had this right! God was using him to teach me a thing or two.

I was one proud enlightened momma! Sacrifice without obedience, without submission and without true heart means NOTHING!

When Samuel speaks of a new King coming, you can tell by the words he is not referring to King David.

“And he who is the Glory of Israel will not lie, nor will he change his mind, for he is not human that he should change his mind.” Yes Samuel prophesized about Jesus!

When people disappoint us, we often mourn of the disappointment. Sometimes our heart is sick over their choices.

But at some point, we must dust our feet off and move on. There is work to be done for God. While we are sad or disappointed, we cannot do God’s work. Sadness is allowed for a time, but it cannot become a barrier that keeps us from serving God fully. ( even if we are sad over a death- nothing can be more important than God)

So off Samuel goes to anoint little ruddy but handsome shepherd boy, David.

God truly sees people; he sees into their heart and character. He does not judge a man’s superficial appearance but rather he has x-ray vision of the heart. There is so much to be learned by this scripture: “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance but the Lord looks at the heart. “

We should pray to have eyes that see the heart, eyes that see behind the superficiality of this world. This is profound and such a wonderful reminder. This world is so much about how skinny, muscular, tall, how beautiful or handsome or even how rich or powerful. All these things are meaningless to God. True beauty is in the heart of a person.

Here we see the Holy Spirit poured into David and see it leave Saul.

But not only did the spirit of the Lord leave Saul, God sent a tormenting spirit that filled Saul with depression and fear. (This door was open because of disobedience to God. Saul’s actions caused this to happen. His disobedience caused him to lose God’s power and protection)

You’ll notice that soothing harp music caused the evil spirit to leave.

This tells me a few things. Those who battle depression and fear have opened the door to oppression by some form of disobedience to God. If a person would repent, turn back to God and obey his commands, then our merciful God will relieve him of this depression or mental illness.

This also tells me of the healing power of music. I have a cousin that had repeat seizures. The meds were not working at all. When he picked up playing the guitar again, the seizures suddenly stopped. Music has powerful healing qualities.

It hasn’t been long ago that I bought a harp CD to listen to before bed. If you are feeling anxious or unsure, listen to harp music and remember what it did for Saul’s mind.

Isn’t it amazing that the harp music actually drove the tormenting spirit- depression and fear away? If someone is acting up at home, crank up that harp music while you cook etc…It will be like walking into a day spa!

Thoughts of John 8: 1-20

When Jesus taught he sat. When he read scripture he stood.

On my first outing doing a ministry speech, I actually did it in a bar in Lakeway. There were a bunch of women who sat at a lounge table, arms crossed with smug looks on their faces. I could feel the judgment radiating across the table. I was quite a bit higher than their low ride seats. Standing made me feel even more uncomfortable.

I felt a hand on my shoulder, pushing me to sit down. I began to sit down and a few of them said, “You should stand, you should stand.” Still the unseen hand on my shoulder forced me to sit.

I began to share my testimony of faith and how God got me through the tough times. I also talked to them about having passion in their life, as I have passion to share Christ’s love to others.

Slowly the arms opened, the eyes at the table softened and even watered and the power of the Holy Spirit through my message unarmed these women.

After I got up, a woman approached me and said, “I was not going to come tonight. I felt a nudge to come and came last minute. I have been scared to do the ministry work that God called me to do which is prolife, speaking out against abortions. You have given me the courage to do it for God, with Passion, without fear. I was supposed to be here tonight so glad I came. “

I know that it was the hand of Jesus pressed me to “sit” as I teach.

(” A crowd gathered and he sat down and taught them”)

Even when I have gone to the women’s shelter, I always make a point to be lower than those I teach, sitting beneath them on the floor, even if they are sitting above me on sofas and chairs. They always insist I stand or get on their level but something inside of me says, ” No….get beneath them, Shea.”  We too must humble ourselves when we do ministry work, allowing our hearts to be exposed, being bold to share our brokenness and disarming anything that creates a feeling of superiority.

If you know Jesus, you know God. So spend the rest of your life getting to know him.

Thoughts of Psalm 110: 1-7

“The Lord said to my Lord, “ Sit in the place of honor at my right hand.”

He speaks of Jesus without even knowing it!

Jesus is the priest forever.  This priest is accessible all the time to you!  He will teach you, guide you, love you,= and protect you.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15:8-10

Do not sacrifice to any other Gods. It is detestable to God.

 

NLT May 13, 2015

Thoughts of Samuel 14: 1-52

God can win any battle with no help from man at all. He’s God. We often put emphasis on our own abilities or the expertise of someone or something, more than we put our faith in the Lord.

Our faith should never be in anything other than God almighty. Now, he can use earthly things to accomplish his goals and that is why it’s so important to go to him in all decisions and to ask for his blessings in all earthly matters. For example, if your child or family member is going into surgery, pray for God to bless the surgery and to guide the doctor. “May the hands of God himself perform a successful surgery. “ Doctors can be used by God but they are not God’s.

We must be faithful, obedient and prayerful, asking for his blessing, protection and so forth. But if God’s not backing you up, you’re in a heap of trouble.

Earthquakes have always been a sign from God. They can symbolize something huge happening, they can warn, and they can cause people to run in terror. The earth has not seen the last of the earthquakes, and God will use earthquakes in a big way, especially as we get closer to him revealing himself. You can expect that the earth will see earthquake at a magnitude and strength that is off the charts.

There is no need to threaten people if you have faith that God is in charge, he will protect you and lead you. Saul made a dumb oath. The men needed food for fuel but once you make an oath or promise, then it’s out there. To say his boys couldn’t eat until before evening, even if they are weak during was pretty dumb. Saul did not think through this statement at all. This is not the first time someone made a dumb oath and lived to pay for his careless words.

We should never make a hasty promise or oath- DON’T do it. Let your yes be yes and your no be no.

The men were so hungry, probably had the shakes that when evening came, they ate without draining the blood, disobeying one of God’s commands.

God most likely will not answer your prayers if you are disobedient and go your own way. Silence is not always golden when you call out to God for answers.

Even though Jonathan was innocent in not knowing, he was guilty because he fell under that oath. Luckily Johnathan’s faith in the Lord that day outweighed or overshadowed his sin of licking the honey. God saved Johnathan through the people’s voices. Johnathan will later be used by God to save David on more than one occasion from Saul’s jealous rage.

Our motto should be “Let’s ask God first.” Words to live by.

Thoughts of John 7: 31-53

Anyone who believes and imitates Jesus will have the Spirit within them. Jesus is born of the royal line of David, was born in Bethlehem. They were blinded back then that he fulfilled scriptures, people are still denying. People today will be blinded when Jesus comes back to earth, there will still be non-believers, doubters who rub their eyes and justify what just happened.

Unexpected people will be pulled into the kingdom just before he comes back as in the case of the guards who were swayed. God is revealing himself, stirring hearts in a big way. But you also see the atheists, anti-god rhetoric getting louder. God is allowing this to see whose heart is truly for him. Will you be swayed by the world or word? Will you claim Jesus even when it’s uncomfortable? Will you boldly go against what has become the norm that leads to perpetual storm?

These Pharisees and Sadducees did not want to dig any deeper to get the truth of Jesus’s ancestral line. If they did many of the Sanhedrin would have believed Jesus to be the Messiah.

So many today are like this…we are lazy doubters and do not want to take the time to search for truth, to read the scriptures. Instead people go ahead and live our lives on what we deem right. Many of us have a degree of faith, believing what we were taught by our parents or grandparents. But most people today, never go on a personal quest for God. Some people have a “degree of faith” but are not all in with their heart. Based on scriptures, luke warm is not saved.

Thoughts on Psalm 109: 1-31

Oh God of heaven defend the helpless against the evil pursuers. We pray Father God for the persecuted Christians. We ask Father God for you to protect them, to change the hearts of the evil persecutors and to rescue them from the grips of the enemy. Hear the prayers of those held captive and answer their pleas for help. Help us all to praise you through the attacks, through the storm, to keep our eyes on you Father. I know in this life or the next you will save me from the grips of the enemy.

Thoughts Proverbs 15: 5-7

Discipline is love. We should all accept discipline and punishment and use it as a platform for correction. A child that is not disciplined is no child of mine. Pursue God in all things and surround yourself with people who are rooted in Christ. (steer clear of those who steer you off course)

 

NLT May 12, 2015

Thoughts of 1 Samuel 12: 1-13: 23

The Lord should be our personal King, is he king in your life? Or have you made something else King? If we rebel against the Lord’s commands and refuse to listen, life will be tough. Everything is harder without God.

So now that they have a king, the Lord said to them make sure that they worship the Lord, don’t turn your back on God and don’t worship worthless idols that cannot rescue. Idols in your life are useless!

Interesting Saul was 30 when he became King. Jesus entered ministry at 30. There is a maturity that happens at 30 years old, especially in men.

Samuel told Saul to wait a few days until he arrived to get instruction. But when Samuel was a little late, and the Israelite men trembled in fear and hid, scared to death of the Philistines, Saul took matters in his own hands. He decided to offer a burnt offering. There is a different in true faith and the ritual of faith, like someone who lights a candle for something. The lighting of the candle means nothing without faith in God.

Saul was impatient and took matters in his own hands instead of trusting the instructions of God through the prophet Samuel. So we know by Samuel’s statement that Saul’s kingdom will not be forever because the Lord is seeking a man after his own heart. (we will later see David which leads to the heart of hearts: Jesus)

Impatience and disobedience are two qualities that will limit the blessings of God. We must put our trust in God, pray and wait. Not all situations calls for immediate action. Sometimes we get ants in our pants and that can cause us to make bad moves.

Thoughts of John 7: 1-30

The world hates Jesus because Jesus accuses them of being evil. Profound. That is why so many stay away from Christianity, stay away from the church. Because when you are in the light, darkness is exposed and then your conscious drives you to make a choice—in or out…change or no change. Jesus, like the commandments, exposes sin. That can be very uncomfortable for sinners, especially those that have “live it up” or “instant gratification” mentality.

People in Jesus time, even if they were silent followers did not have the courage to speak up for Jesus because they could lose their life or get public peer pressure for it. Today, we see that people would rather post about evil, coarse jokes, their children, their appearance then dare speak of Jesus. Why are so many afraid of the J word?

I recently had someone ask how can Shea teach anything she does not have her degree in Theology? Jesus was asked the same thing. I’m not comparing myself in anyway to Jesus, I obviously fall infinitely short of my love. But they asked him “How does he know so much when he has not been trained?“ When the Spirit drives your life, you are enlightened and you are on a quest for truth. We are commissioned by Jesus to go out and speak about him. If you aren’t against him, you are for him. Yes, we are to be sure that what we speak about is the gospel truth and that is why we can’t trust others for the truth, only trust the written word of God. I’ve learned so much by reading the bible about how many cults twist the truth, have some element of the truth, add something to the truth, even sectors of Christianity that seem “mainstream” are saturated with customs, rituals, beliefs, chants that are clearly not scriptural.

So do not be afraid to share. Jesus himself was questioned on his training. God will train you. We don’t have time to get a piece of paper that says Masters of Theology. We are in school right now….and the Spirit inside of you is teaching you.

If someone seeks to glorify themselves or preaches about a “better self” or “life balance” or self- love or self- esteem or “prosperous life” , then they are pointing to someone other than Jesus Christ. Be careful and aware when you hear any gospel that points to anything other than love of God, Love of Christ, Repentance, Being Humble and being Self-less. The bible warns of false prophets. When you know the scriptures, the spirit will help you spot a phony.

Thoughts of Psalm 108: 1-13

Before you pray, claim it. Thank God in advance for what he has done for you and what he will do for you. Thank you God in advance for hearing my prayer and answering us- in Jesus name!

Human help without your blessing is useless. Rely on God. With God’s help huge things can happen.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 4

Be careful with your words. Don’t lash out in anger and say things you will regret. And certainly don’t be sneaky or deceitful. We have to keep those cups, “hearts” pure for God.

 

NLT May 11, 2015

Thoughts on Samuel 10: 1-11: 15

God chooses people for certain missions and positions. He has the power to pour the Holy Spirit over someone and if they backslide to remove it. Music is so moving. I love that the music was playing with then spirit was poured into Saul. God gave Saul a new heart. He can give us a new heart too.

People today are still rejecting God and rejecting Jesus. People today are still putting their faith in earthly people and earthly things, instead of God. Our reliance, our hope lies in the hands of the most High God. He giveth and taketh away.

Wonder why Saul was hiding? His modesty and insecurities in some ways were good qualities. How quickly does he lose this soft heart, this humbleness and replace it with pride and impatience? Pretty quick. We also cannot let achievement or insecurities cause us to lose God. We must pray for God to help us keep us humble, patient and faithful.

I found it interesting that the Spirit of God caused Saul to become very angry over the enemy gouging the eyes out of the Israelites. We too can become angry at injustice, abuse, evil. God can use that passion within us to battle evil. Not all anger is bad. There is some anger that at the heart of it is good.

Some things do cause us to take action. Like let’s say that you see a child being abused, you should report it. Perhaps, God allowed you to see it because he knew you would do something.

There are other times in life that you should not get involved, but you should ramp up on prayers and allow God to fight the battles. In both cases, you will need God’s blessing and power to help. Saul’s anger was actual used to unify forces so that they could fight King Nahash. Passion for a cause can be a powerful tool for getting people to help.

What I find interesting is all the battle techniques that can be learned from the bible, like showing up at unannounced times. Some attack during night while people are resting or attack in the morning before they wake up.

Dividing up into different troops in key areas- splitting the forces. I also think it’s fascinating how sound is used to disorientate like the sounding of broken pots or horns. God often uses this splitting up of forces and noises and surprises to win battles.

Today, we see our Nation giving away strategies on broadcast networks, warning the enemy. This is not a smart strategy for defeating, rather our stupidity is giving the enemy a heads up. Even more stupid is that we do not go to God in prayer before we strategize or make a move.

Also in battle, they give the enemy false information ahead of time and then show up at a surprise time. Do we do this anymore? No- we give out too much information. Example: We will be pulling out on such and such date! WHAT? DUMB DUMB! No wonder we have problems these days destroying evil. I think our political leaders could do much good praying for God’s help, quietly strategizing and not worrying about getting buy from anyone other than God. You can also see in all of these battles that boots on the ground was a given. Israelites won battles with less people, less equipment…Why? They had God as the Commander of the Army. Do we? You know the answer. This country has become so arrogant that we have abandoned God and we have forgotten that fearing God is a good thing.

Thoughts of John 6: 43-71

No one can come to Jesus unless the Father who sent Jesus draws them to Jesus. This is profound. So each of you on this bible mission is being drawn by God Himself. Is that not exciting? He sees something in your heart, enough to nudge and pull you in.

Now the question is will you allow the word and your faith to take root? Time to ramp up the prayers to ask God to cement your relationship with him. I also would include a statement like this: “Jesus, when you come back allow me into your kingdom. Please continue to draw me closer to you, refine me, redefine me and allow me to be with you. “

Or “Father please give me to Jesus. “

Those that feed on the words of Jesus, who live their life dependent on Jesus will be with him in the eternal kingdom. Jesus is our real nourishment, he is the bread of life. “Human effort accomplishes nothing” We cannot be good enough to earn our way in. But we can live according to words of Jesus, which will inspire us to do good deeds. But it is our faith in Him that is the “golden ticket.”

Thoughts of Psalm 107: 1-43

Has the Lord helped you? Share it with others! ( exalt him publically)

Are you thirsty for God? If so, that’s a great thing! Pursue Him in Word and in Prayer and in application.

Call out to God, he will help you.

When we are loyal and faithful to God, he blesses us. When we are a spiritually dry wasteland, we do not feel the fullness in blessings that God wants to give us. It’s our choice feast or famine? This is not always referring to physical need but spiritual connection to God.

Thoughts of Proverbs 15: 1-3

“ A gentle answer deflects anger.”

Okay someone ticks you off, annoys you…take a deep breath and give a gentle answer, that will do much to not ignite a fight. Do not let your short temper belch a bunch of foolishness. Take a second, deep breath, think about how you will handle it….pray for calmness…and then react or not. ( on a personal note- I passed with flying colors this passed weekend on this one. My heart was pounding in my chest over an incident and I prayed to God to help me not Go off, help me handle it…calmly speak…and I surprised even myself- I showed such calmness, grace and passed the test.)

You may see things going on in this world and wonder why is God allowing this to take place? Remember, justice and punishment or judgment is God’s timing …but he sees everything keeping eye on both the evil and the good.

 

 

 

NLT May 10, 2015

The people want an earthly King, a tangible person that they can bow down to, answer to, that will lead them. God warned that an earthly sinful King would reign over everything in their lives and cause them much grief. “When that day comes, you will beg for relief from this king you are demanding, but then the Lord will not help you. “

So many of us put our fate in things of this world. We expect our spouses or doctors to be our rescuers, look for jobs as security. We too abandon God and put our faith in the powerless. So the Israelite’s pushed God out. They did so/so under the guidance of the Judges and now they scream for a King. How many times do we put our faith in people or things instead of God? How many times does he warns us, and we just insist on going our own way?

Jesus is fully God and fully man. He came to the earth to show us how to live, to be the tangible thing we cried out for. But his leadership and judgment are divine in nature. His kingdom is everlasting. He also will serve as a judge over the people. So God did listen, have mercy and give the people what they wanted. But still they rejected the very one God sent that fulfilled all of their needs, including saving them from eternal alienation.

With our superficial earthly minds how do we visualize a King? Tall, Dark and Handsome- striking! Well, Saul was all that. He looked like a king. God did pick him from the weakest and smallest of the clans, Benjamin.

So God gave the people what they wanted, King Saul.

At this point, Saul was still modest, humble; perhaps that is why God choose him. Yes to most this would come across as insecurities and doubting themselves, but there is something so sweet about Saul’s reaction.  It feels to me like someone with a humble heart. God also chooses David, a humble shepherd. God choose people who come from humble backgrounds.

Saul would eventually put his faith in other things not of God. This will destroy him.

Thoughts of John 6: 22-42

We need to spend our time loving God, loving others. An investment into the eternal relationship with Jesus seals our fate. We do not get into heaven by works. We get into heaven by believing in Jesus. He is the bread of life, he is the gift from God. You will never have the same influence over your own family member as a stranger will. You may be able to plant some thoughts or seeds, but your true spear of influence is beyond your four walls or immediate family.

Jesus had trouble ministering in his own home town because they saw him a simple carpenter’s son. They could not wrap their mind around the idea that he was a prophet.

Thoughts: Psalm 106: 32-48

We too absorb our environment: Protect your mind and ears so that you do not absorb the evil practices around you.

Do you wonder why God destroyed all of the people including children in these Pagan tribes?

Was he not saving the children, bringing them home to safety ?

Look what these pagans did to their children.

“Sacrificed their sons and daughters to demons”

“Shed innocent blood of their sons and daughters by sacrificing them to the idols of Canaan.”

When God killed all the pagan people , including the children, we might think, ” How could God kill innocent children?” ( this would be an earthly perspective)

But when you think from an eternal perspective, you realize that God saved them from earthly abuse, earthly violence and eternal torture. Many of those children died before the age of accountability, so when they passed from this earth, they not only escaped horrific earthly torture but also they escaped eternal torture. Those children are basking in the light of God, safe. God is all loving, but he has to stop evil—even if that means bringing someone home to Heaven.

Thoughts of Proverbs 14: 34-35

Is our Nation Godly?  Are we as a people making God smile, rejoice? Or are we making him angry – disgraced?

Start by purifying your own heart.

Start by teaching Godly ways in your home.

Show others the Love of God in you.

 

NLT May 9, 2015

1 Samuel 5: 1-7: 17- Thoughts

Approximately 60 temples across the nation of Nepal were destroyed in the April 25 earthquake.

The report from the Department of Archaeology (DoA) in the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation said on Sunday that more than 200 monuments have been partly damaged.

Then, we look back a year ago, and an earthquake in Thailand on May 6, 2004 knocked off the head of Buddha at the Udomwaree temple in Chiang Rai. ( see picture) We do not know why this took place. But it is similar to that found in book of Samuel. Remember, as Christians we are to love the Sinner but not the sin. So we should love and help these hurt people with food, water and supplies. It’s our hope to let them see Jesus in us when we help them.

When the Philistines attempted to put the Holy Ark next to Dagon, Dagon’s face fell down much like the face of Buddha fell down in the earth quake above, much like the temples in Nepal fell down. God may for a time delay punishment or judgment for idolatry. What we do know from scriptures is that these practices bowing to statues are not approved practices.

When the Philistines did not heed the warnings, God put a plague of tumors on the people. Each city they moved the Ark, was plagued.

God is the same yesterday today and tomorrow. The second commandment says:

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am o jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of then that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

Although some religions seem to have philosophies and worship practices that seem peaceful in thought and nature, the enemy has used this portion of the faith to mislead you away from the one true God and away from the truth found in the word. When you bow down and worship these idol statues, pray out to them, the demons are the ones that capture your prayers. You anger God with your loyalty to these artificial gods. When we anger God, we are opening ourselves up to an attack.

When we confess our sins, fast and change, God hears us. He is a merciful, loving God that is very patient with us, but like any father after warning after warning he does have a breaking point. It’s kind of like being on probation. How many times will the court system put you on probation for you to break it? Break it? Break it? Eventually you will pay the price with prison time.

This is so powerful in today’s scripture: “If you are really serious about wanting to return to the Lord, get rid of your foreign gods and your images of Ashtoreth. Determine to obey only the Lord; then he will rescue you….”

Do not put anything in your life above God: certainly not any statue or false god, not kids, not work, not family, not materialism, not sports or hobbies, not your looks…NOTHING! God comes before everything else. Obey God first. Serve God first. If you have any for of idolatry , any  sculptures or anything that feels like an idol in your house; get rid of it. If you have any books on mystic get rid of them. All of it is deemed disobedience to God.

When you have done wrong and you are confessing and turning back, don’t stop praying for God to help you. In fact, it’s a good idea to find a faithful servant of God or more than one to speak on your behalf. God hears the prayers and more likely to answer those who are faithful to him. We see the wayward people asking faithful Samuel to pray for them.

If your prayers never seem to come true, take a look at your devotion and obedience. If you are praying for others have them reflect on their life. The more pure the life, the more likely you are to have prayers answered. . Now keep in mind that God is a merciful loving God, not all our prayers will be answered because it’s his will to be done. God had abandoned and punished the Israelites for not obeying the instructions of God. But when they cried out to him, he helped. But he required them to be faithful and true.

Have you noticed all the analogies and stories in the Old Testament and references in New Testament to rocks and stones? Quite interesting. Rocks were symbols of God power. God should be the cornerstone of our life, the very thing that holds it all together.

God is our “stone of help.”

Thoughts of John 6: 1-21

We are fed by God by his word. When we read daily, we are getting the daily bread, the nourishment that we need from God. We must have faith that God is a powerful miraculous God, one that can do amazing spectacular things in your life. But we cannot see God or understand God with a human earthly perspective. God is god. He can do things that we never could or even imagine that he could do. Do not underestimate his impact on your life or the life of others.

Once again we see that God wants us to not take one thing for granted. He wants us to make the most of everything we have available to us. We should sell our things, be resourceful, recycle and be creative with left overs. Shepherd’s pie is a great example, with an interesting title. It’s a great recipe of how we can be resourceful with our left overs. Pizza is another thing you can make from left over scraps. Do not waste what God has given you, including your talents.

Thoughts of Psalm 106: 13-31

Here we go again…How quickly we forget what God has done in our lives. Thank him today for what he has done for you. Do not forget what he has provided, how he got you out of sticky situation or how he delivered you. Do not get impatient with God, for he is patient with you. Do not be as the Israelites were: ungrateful complainers who forgot what God had done for them.

 

NLT May 8, 2015

When we allow people to speak or treat God unfairly, especially our kids, then we are giving the child more honor than we are giving God.

For example, let’s say your child is messing around during prayer time at the table, eyes open, looking at ceiling, kicking sister’s feet under the table. This has happened many times at our house with both kids not taking prayer as seriously as they should. If I were to allow this, not correct the children, then I would be giving my kids more honor than God.

If for instance, I didn’t correct the bad behavior because I want to hurry up and eat, then I am giving myself, my own selfish desires, more honor than I am giving God.

Let’s say you are ministering to a boy that has a terrible potty mouth, if you do not correct his foul mouth and show him scriptures in the bible where God clearly states that foul mouth, coarse jokes are not tolerable; then, you are honoring the boy more than you are honoring God. We must educate our children, using scriptures and knowledge of the word.

We must all give God the honor and respect he deserves. He is God. We must approach life with the fear of God. He’s GOD. I know we can’t wrap our minds around the power and majesty of God himself. But we should be aware that our goal is to please him. If we see others especially those he has entrusted us with like our children do acts against God, we are not only responsible for correcting and punishing them, we are required. If we do not speak on God’s behalf, we will be punished for making our children idols.

These boys knew that the Ark was not supposed to be removed from Most Holy Place. The Ark without God’s blessing, has no power. It’s just an object. Without obedience and loyalty to God, these things have no influence or power over anything in our lives. It is God and God alone that protects us or doesn’t protect us based on our loyalty and service to him.

So if you put a cross on your neck, yet you live a selfish egotistical life, one that caters to the world instead of obeying. If you wear this cross yet you refuse to imitate Jesus….then that cross on your neck is nothing but a piece of jewelry. It is not even a symbol that God reigns in your life. It is powerless. And furthermore, when you fail to listen and heed the warnings of disobedience you are asking for the favor of God to be lifted, playing with fire!

Objects are just objects. Statues are just statues. Our goal is through faith and obedience to have God’s blessings over everything in our life.

As much as it is heart breaking that the Ark was taken, it is also a terrible symbol of the disobedience and absence of God. Now the pagans, who believe that things have power will probably believe that God is with them since they conquered the Ark. That is not the truth. God is merely punishing the haphazardness that took place in the temple and the mistreatment of people. He can use even his enemies to accomplish a goal. Evil cannot be tolerated.

You’ll notice again that Eli served as Judge for 40 years. (that 40 again)

When we disobey God, tragedy can follows us. When we obey God, we can have an abundance of blessing poured out. He wants to bless us. It is our choice to go his way or our way. Instant gratification or eternal peace with God for the sacrifices we made on earth for Him.

Thoughts for John 5:24-47

Jesus has the authority to Judge the world. He was given this authority by God. All those who died will rise again when they hear the voice of Jesus. Those who died who have done good in God’s eyes before Christ came,will rise and will enjoy an eternal life. Those who did evil in God’s eyes will rise to experience judgment.

Jesus’s miracles and resurrection testify that God sent Jesus. When you believe in Jesus, you have God in your heart. The scriptures in Old Testament point to Jesus. Yet many refuse to come to Jesus to receive life.

Do not worry about accepting approval from man. If they mock you because of your belief in Jesus, then they do not have God’s love in their heart. We quickly honor, give awards and glorify man for his deeds, yet so many do not honor the one that comes from God.

Before it is too late, before you hear Jesus’s voice coming from the clouds, you must confess your loyalty to him in words and in action and in transformation. Today could be your last day on earth. Do you know where you are going?

Moses himself points to Jesus, yet the hard hearts, the ones without God in their heart, cannot see the truth. The truth has been hidden from them. Pray that God unhardened your heart, open your ears, open your eyes and give you childlike faith. Time is passing fast. We do not know when he will return. We are to be ready today. We do not know when our last breath will be taken, if we will pull out of this world in a flash. So do not waste time, pray and pursue the word of God with the seriousness that your very eternal destiny is at stake.

There is not time for sugar coating the word of God and only preaching the fluffy light stuff. All of the word of God must be spoken and spoken clearly, so that all of God’s children’s ears, eyes and hearts will embrace him before it is too late. When we scrub the bible or jump over the part we are uncomfortable with, there is an opportunity for the real truth to be missed which could result in the door being shut. Remember Jesus is the stairway to heaven. He is the light, the way and the truth. There is no other way but Jesus Christ to Heaven. If we know Him, we know God. If we put our faith in Jesus as our savior, and we commit to living like Him, we are reconciled with God. If we continue our old ways, we are not submitting fully and authentically, then the heart is not pure for God. And if the heart is not one for Jesus, not one for God, we are putting ourselves in the line of Judgment.

All we have is today. We may not even have all of today. So the urgency has always been there. But we have ignored it and ignored the fact that life is a gift and fleeting. Embrace God, Jesus as your Savior. Get the word of God in your heart and start speaking it into the hearts of your friends, families and strangers. Time is of essence, whether we hear Jesus’s voice soon or one of us passes away.

Thoughts of Psalm 106: 1-12

There is joy for those who deal justly with others and always do what is right.

Do you worry more about some aspect of your life? Do you fully trust God in all situation?

If he can free the Israelites from bondage, he is fully capable of handling any of your problems or worries. Pray to him about areas you might have anxiousness or worry…DO not fear the future for God goes ahead of you.

Thought of Proverbs 14: 30-31

Sickness can be linked to something spiritually missing in your life, a disconnection to God. When we have the peace that God brings in our life we are in general healthier. A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body; jealousy is like a cancer in the bones.

Do not oppress the poor. These churches that take advantage of the poor insult God. But anything we do to help the poor honors him. There is a direct tie between your spiritual life and your health. Unforgiveness, bitterness, sadness, grudges can all effect your health.

 

NLT May 7, 2015

Rubbing stuff in people’s faces, taunting others is so cruel. I remember once in High School a group of bullies were walking behind this girl and snorting like a pig. My stomach curled as I watched this, and I yelled out to them to SHUT up and to stop. They did stop after I loudly rebuked them.

There is something so evil about taunting someone. It is as if it resembles the kind of perpetual taunting torture that will take place in the fiery lake. My heart bleeds for children or people who are victims of taunting or bullying. When I see people who commit suicide over this kind of evil torment, my heart aches for the abuse they endured and for the outcome.

We are to treat people kindly. Words can be so painful and heart breaking. I can’t imagine how tortuous the trip to the temple was for her with the ongoing abuse along the way. God never intended there to be more than one wife to a man. Polygamy in the bible caused so much jealousy and family rifts it’s not even funny. Peninnah was cruel to make fun of Hannah for being barren.

When you make a vow before God, you must take it seriously and follow through. Now that I realize how sacred vows are to God, it makes me somewhat nervous about how flippant I might have been in the past when making vows, saying “I promise” or “I swear.”

All promises and vows are not taken lightly by God. So when Hannah promised to give Samuel to God, not matter how much she loved her only son, she had to follow through with that promise. I guess dropping your only son off to the priest was bitter sweet. But God rewarded her for keeping her vow with 5 more children.

Do not say I promise, I swear, I vow—unless you intend to carry through.

When you are sad, cry out to God like Hannah did. He hears your cries. He loves you. Don’t give up on God. He doesn’t give up on you.

Thoughts of John 5:1-23

It’s the Sabbath, Jesus spots a man who has suffered for 38 years. He had mercy on this man, despite the man’s bitterness, complaining and blaming ways. He made excuses for why he had not entered into the healing waters. When he was excused of working on the Sabbath, instead of praising God, he tried to get out trouble by passing blame to Jesus. God loves it when we do His work on His Day. If you are loving God or loving others on the Sabbath, that is favorable in God’s eyes. It’s not about the “rules” it’s about the heart for God. Jesus had a heart for God and a heart to help the suffering and sick.

The most powerful statement in this passage for me is: “Stop sinning or something even worse may happen to you. “

God may heal you. God may help you out of a sticky situation. But if you continue your own way, sinful ways, if you don’t repent, change, praise, pray and serve God; then something even worse could happen.

You must be grateful to God for what he has done in your life. Never forget the grace and the miracles he’s worked in your life. Humble yourself and show gratitude by Serving God and Others with a heart that longs and strives for the purity of God.

All authority to judge man lays on Jesus’s shoulders. Jesus is the stairway that leads to Heaven. We must make it our life’s goal to be his friend. Because he will be the one that determines your fate, with God or not. “Anyone who does not honor the Son is certainly not honoring the Father who sent him. “ Like Abraham, this is based on Faith and Repentance. So if you deny Jesus with your mouth or with your heart, you are not friends with the very one that determines your fate. What a friend we have in Jesus- Don’t forget it and seek Him.

Thoughts on Psalm 105: 37-45

“He split open a rock, and water gushed out to form a river through dry wasteland.”

Jesus is the rock sent to give us living water that runs through and cleanses the dry wasteland of sin in our lives. You must drink of this water, cleanse your soul with his water continuously while obeying out of love and gratitude the word of God.

Thoughts of Proverbs 14: 28-29

God loves watching his kingdom grow. He needs our help to increase his kingdom. It’s not the kingdoms of this earth that will flourish, they will pass away. God’s kingdom with Jesus as Prince will be everlasting.

Control your anger. Count to ten if you need to…walk away and pray.

Hot tempers cause a lot of grief. Work on refining the gentleness of your spirit to mirror the patience of God. The more you are in the word and the more you pray, the more you practice self-restraint…the better you will get in the area of snappiness, hot tempers, outbursts or anger.

 

NLT May 6, 2015

Ruth was loyal. She was a hard worker. She was selfless. She was brave. She was willing to sacrifice everything out of love. She committed herself to the Naomi and the God of Israel. She was blessed for it and then some. She gave birth to Obed, who was Jesse’s Dad. Remember Jesse was King David’s Father. So Jesus himself was in Ruth’s family line. Boaz was a great guy too, also loving, protective and selfless.

I just love this : “ May the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge, reward you fully for what you have done. “

Out of goodness and love, comes blessings. Look at all the blessings poured out to each other for all the good. Boaz, Ruth and Naomi were blessed because of this selfless love that all of them poured out over each other.

We too will be blessed for loving God and loving each other. God rewards his own for obedience.

Our family redeemer is Christ. He redeems us and restores us to God. He too was self-less and loving and paid the price for us. He also takes care of us, protects us, loves us and rescues us in every way.

The child of Ruth and Boaz sure did become famous in Israel. He was a child birthed out of unconditional love.

We should take care of our family members that need us too. We can learn so much from the qualities of Naomi, Ruth and Boaz. They all just ooze LOVE.

Thoughts John 4:43-54

Blessed are those that don’t see but still believe. Your trust and faith should come before you see the miracle, not vice versa. The government official, even in a state of panic, did not doubt Jesus by insisting that he come to house to actual touch his son. Instead the official, had faith, believed that his son was healed just by Jesus’s words. We too must have this kind of divine faith in Jesus. If only we had faith of a mustard seed, we could tell mountains to move from here to there, and they would obey. This is the kind of faith we must work on. Do not let the enemy capture one of your thoughts, causing one inch of doubt.

Thoughts of Psalm 105: 16-36

God is with you or he is against you. To get favor and blessings from God we must turn to God, fully submit in thought and action. We must fight to obey the word of God and to repent when we slip up. God is powerful. As much as we don’t’ want to think about it, we should fear God. God is the giver of life, and he can take life away. God can and wants to pour blessings out over his faithful servants. He is merciful, loving. But you  should always remember to never become an enemy of God. As seen in history, he can really make things difficult for those that go their own way. But he can also bless, bless, bless those who love Him.

Thoughts of Proverbs 14: 26-27

Your fear of God will motivate you to live to please Him, which will bring security and give you eternal life.

 

NLT May 5, 2015

“In those days Israel had no king; all the people did whatever seemed right in their own eyes.“ Is this not the time we are in today? Under the guise of “rights” we allow things to go on in this country that God would not approve. Often we place it under the umbrella of equality or tolerance, but we must all individually weigh our actions against the word of God. We should do what is right in God’s eyes, not our own.

We are in the time in the bible where it says:

Isaiah 5: 20-21 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! 21Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes. And clever in their own sight!

This attack was not carefully planned out, and they had a problem of not having enough wives for the men left. They avoid breaking the vows, yet kidnap girls for their own selfish desires? Would this be pleasing to the Lord? No. We cannot justify or manipulate or add anything to the word of God. If we get ourselves into a bind, we must not do illegal things or evil things to get ourselves out of the mess we made. Clearly, the tribes were trying to man-handle the word of God. But he sees everything. Just because they think it is right, does not mean it is right to God.

Elimelech did what he thought was right for his family; he left Judah and headed to pagan country to avoid the famine in the land. By doing this, his boys married Moab women. Not sure if they were punished for going to live with pagans or what, but the family saw much tragedy. Naomi the mother, lost her husband and both sons. She was left with her two daughter in laws.

The daughter in laws were still young enough that they could remarry and start a new life. Naomi did not have anyone. In those days, widows with no family would have a very hard time providing for themselves. Although Naomi knew her fate would be very hard without the two girls, she was self-less and encouraged them to go back to their families, to make find husbands.

One daughter in law did go back home. Naomi put her daughter in laws needs over her own. Ruth showed that kind of love right back. Ruth refused to leave her mother in law. Ruth also claimed the God of Israel as her God. So she not only proclaimed at that moment her loyalty and devotion to Naomi (caring for widows is a big deal to God) , but she also claimed her devotion to the one true God. You will later see God pour blessings out of Ruth for this, which in hand blesses Naomi.

Naomi attributed the loss in her life due to her leaving God’s allotted land and not trusting God to bring them through the famine. She knew that they had done what’s wrong in God’s eyes by intermarrying with pagans and immersing into their culture. The good news is that through this mistake, God influenced Ruth’s life in a big way.

Naomi’s name meant pleasantness.

She renamed herself Mara after all her losses. Mara is Hebrew for bitter.

Each decision we make must be carefully thought out because each decisions especially those hastily made out of desperation could be quite costly. It’s always best to, “pray on it.”

Thoughts of John 4: 4-42

Living water was water from a fresh spring, not water held in a cistern or a well. Living water was rare in that part of the country.

Jesus is our living water. With Jesus we will not thirst again. When we have Jesus, the joy and the inner peace that comes with serving him, we fill us up. God is everything we need and provides all.

When we drink the living water, it refreshes us and revives us. It bubbles within us causing us to transform into his likeness. We cannot hide any of our mishaps from God. He knows all that we’ve done and do. But he loves us anyway. Jesus is for everyone.

His grace is sufficient for all of your sins. The more sins one has the more humble they are towards God. He wants us to acknowledge our short comings, to embrace his free gift. None of us are worthy, that is what makes the gift so special. All you must do is have faith in Jesus, drink his living water so that you may be blessed with an everlasting life with God.

The great thing is that all debts and mistakes are wiped clean when you confess Jesus as your Savior. So no matter who you were, you are made new in Him. Jesus offers his love to everyone. He does not have the prejudices of this fallen world. To be seen with a “mixed” Samaritan was unfavorable at the time. Jews felt that they were more “pure” and “better than” seeing Samaritans as mutts.

So Jesus was really bucking the social norm system, just loving and not judging.

God made each one of unique and special and beautiful. He purposely shared his message with the Samaritan village and made a huge impact in those days. This is foreshadowing of the gospel going out to the gentiles.

We are nourished by doing God’s will. When you feel “off” ask yourself, “Am I doing God’s will?”

Pray or reflect on what may be causing you to feel spiritually malnourished.

It’s our job to plant the word of God in people hearts and to encourage spiritual growth. Some of us will plant seeds of God in people’s hearts. Some of us will help develop and harvest that seed. Some of us will scoop up the harvested disciple and use them for God’s work on the streets. Each one of us has a different part in the process of bring people to God or helping people be used for God.

Be sure that you are actively involved in the “great commission” in some form of fashion. Just as Jesus got outside the comfort zone, forgetting about what the world thinks with his missionary work, we too should branch out and be bold despite insecurities.

This Samaritan woman was changed forever by her meeting with Jesus. She claimed him Savior of the world. She began to spread the gospel and introduce Jesus to others. You too should introduce your friend Jesus to others.

Thoughts of Psalm 105: 1-15

  • Give Thanks
  • Proclaim Him to Others
  • Praise Him
  • Glorify Him

Thoughts of Proverbs 14: 25

False Witnesses destroy lives- God has no patience with liars.

NLT May 4, 2015

Gibeah, a Benjamin’s town had been overtaken with evil. It was much to dangerous to spend the night on the streets. The crowds beat on the door, demanding that the home owner release the male visitor  so  they could rape the man that was visiting the old man.

I can’t help but think how this traveling Levite man had lost his ethics and morals too. How selfish was he to push his concubine out in his place to be raped all night? All I kept thinking is how both sides of the door seem equally spiritually corrupt. And how inconsiderate the next morning to just to say, “Come on Let’s Go,” as if this poor woman had not be seriously abused all night long.

Then, to think how barbaric to take a knife and cut his concubines body into 12 pieces and to send one piece to each tribe throughout the land. I know that he did this to show seek help from the tribes at getting revenge and purging the tribe of Benjamin from this evil.

But just reading this story, I feel sick on all sides of the story. God could not have been pleased with him pushing the girl out to be ravaged like an animal. This is definitely a hard read.

The tribes had been slowly pulling apart at the seams, becoming more and more independent: not unifying with each other or God. But tragedy, especially horrifying or big tragedy, does seem to pull people together and unify. Tragedy also seems to bring God to the forefront. But the question is, does the unity and faith stay? Unfortunately, sin is so rampant on this earth that even today after a tragedy, we unify for a bit only to go our own sinful ways again. Only true repentance, true change can have lasting power, God’s power.

The bible says because of this horrific crime, all of the Israelites were completely united. But why would the tribe of Benjamin not release the criminals? Because they themselves had become as corrupt as the rapists. They were guilty by association and protection of them.

Judah always goes first into battle. Jesus, the Lord always goes first for us. Even at first if it seems you are in a losing battle, continue to cry out to God for help. Stay faithful and prayerful even and especially when the heat is turned up in your life. Sometimes when life gets real rough, we need  to fast and pray.

We too should always seek direction and guidance from God, especially when we are unsure. He will clarify the next step.

The entire town of Gibeah was destroyed- with that destruction much evil was destroyed. We can not tolerate evil of any kind, it is a breeding ground. When we tolerate, ignore, or defend those that do evil, we are condoning the behavior.

Our loyalty, even if we have family member that does a crime, is to God not man. That does not mean we can’t love, but we must be the voice of Truth.  That town was convicted and punished for harboring detestable animalistic sexual predators. God can use evil for his purposes,  he used this incident to unify his tribes and purge the evil from amongst his people.  Did he allow this to happen to purge evil and unify the people?

My thoughts were that God also saved this concubine through her death from being slaved by a cruel husband. I know in this realm death seems bad. But she actually was released through death.

John was a powerful tool for God, he was a well known prophet. But this prophet did not put his own name in lights, he pointed to Jesus.  Beware some  of our modern day ministers, preachers, teachers and spiritual speakers feed of the celebrity status.

If anyone points to themselves, and does not continually point to Jesus Christ as the ” Son of God,” then do not have anything to do with them. A true man or woman of God will always point to Jesus Christ as the Savior. A follower will not scrub the bible but will speak truth into the people. A true follower is not white washing the bible with feel good motivational speeches, but speaking truth into hearts, even if it’s not something that is easy to hear.

The bible does have a lot of feel goods, but it also has truth and reality. This is not about feeling good within yourself or your own abilities. It is not about good deeds but it is about accepting Jesus as your savior and living to imitate him in all that you do. This is serious business, it’s the difference between going to Heaven or going to the lake of fire. Harsh? Scary? Yes. But for real.

Once you know the word, you will be aware when something doesn’t smell right!  Remember Jesus’s name is the only one that needs to be in Lights. If you are in the word daily, you won’t be sold a wooden nickel as my Grandmother used to say.

Thoughts Psalm 104: 24-35

Take time to enjoy all that God has created. Go outside, travel, explore, go on adventures…God’s animals, plants, earth is truly beautiful and handcrafted. Stop to smell the roses! Get your hand off your electronic device and enjoy what God gave you- this earth. What he created is far more exciting than anything man created.

Imagine what God has waiting for his followers. How beautiful and magnificent will it be with God in Heaven? Take the most magical animated movie you’ve ever seen that displays vividness, sparkles, magic and times it by a million. I can only imagine what he has waiting for those who are committed to him. BIG butterflies? Huge Waterfalls? Exotic unimaginable animals? Dream.

Thoughts of Proverbs 14: 22-24

How can we plan to do good? Think of something you can do this week to do good, to serve the  poor, the sick, widows.

God expects us to work hard to achieve. We can’t just strategize and dream about it, we must do it.

Wealth can be the crown of the wise, but true wisdom comes from God.  God blesses you with talents and with hard work, you can achieve great wealth. Once you have the wealth, then you must be truly wise and use that wealth for God’s purposes. Never forget to thank God for your blessings by blessing someone else.

Include God in all your plans. Work hard and he will bless you.

 

 

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