Friday, September 28, 2012

I DO Believe In Some Good Stuff

I'd rather spend my time thinking about good things than bad things, I'd rather smile than frown, I'd rather thank God for a beautiful morning than to dread the rising of the sun & complain. I'd rather imagine possibilities and set goals than predict doom, gloom and failure. It seems easier to be negative than positive, you have to be pro-active and not passive to focus on the good, but that is that path that I am going to choose. Some people suggest I have false hope, but frankly, I'd rather have false hope than no hope & I believe I can base my hope on good, solid facts. 

People all around you every day are quick to point out the things that are lacking and need improvement, but how many times do we purposely find the good things, think about the good things and talk about the good things? 

I am tired of being angry and tired of limiting myself for no good reason when I KNOW other people succeed all the time. I want to succeed. I plan on it. 

You will never regret giving God praise instead of complaining. You will never regret forcing yourself to smile or be friendly, and you will never regret counting your blessings and focusing on the character of our good God.

I know there are times when certain negative facts cannot/must not be ignored. That is fine. Everything needs balance. But there is no reason to constantly focus on the negative and bring yourself and your life into agreement with self-fulfilling prophecies.  

Being pro-active, being thankful, being positive, being strong and growing-doesn't happen by accident-you have to consciously and daily practice it. Seek and ye shall find. Knock and it shall be opened unto you. Ask and ye shall receive also GIVE and ye shall receive. 

1. You have to feed your mind and heart with the correct things. You have to seek out the input, the influence, the media, books, Scripture and friends that you Need instead of feeding on negative things. Nurture your soul with good godly edification and positive friends, these changes might start small but they can change your life. 

It can often be as simple as reciting a Scripture to yourself or thanking God for the day the SECOND you wake up, it can be smiling and waving to someone instead of just being grumpy and in a hurry, it's the little things that change your day & it's days that make up your life. 

I've been practicing thanking God every morning, being more friendly and purposely cutting out negative conversation and replacing it with something encouraging. 

I'm not talking about corny, unrealistic, cheesy pretense-I'm talking about acknowledging the legitimately positive things in your life. You can find some-I promise. 

The Devil is a LIAR & so what he has in his arsenal is LIES. Therefore, CONSTANTLY remind yourself and repeat the TRUTH. The truth is good. The truth is liberating. The truth destroys lies. Resist the Devil. 

Always remember the love of God. God's love is constant and never-changing! God is good-all the time. 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Bible says that Christ died for the Church. He LOVES, passionately-not only you as an individual but us as an assembly of His people. The word Church means a called out assembly. We are called out and lead by the Spirit of God to be part of His Church and follow the mission that He has given to us. We should love the Church because Christ loves the Church and gave Himself for it. If we love Christ we will love what Christ loves.

If you are abiding in Jesus, you'll have the same affections that He does. So you will have a loyalty and a passion and a love for the house of God. God's House should be a priority for us. And the house is all of us temples of the Holy Ghost joined together, it is not a building but an assembly of God's people. God's children. 

God loves us more than we understand, and He wants us to love one another.

Did you know that the Church should be a place of healing? We ALL should be looking to restore and edify each other. It is not about criticizing each other, it's about applying the healing balm of friendship, prayer and encouragement. Your presence should make other people take courage and feel more hopeful. Be an encouragement. 

Did you know that words can bring life. Let the Spirit of God and the Word of God dwell in you and out of you will spring an overflow of Hope and Faith and glory to God. Come to Church with the attitude of Jesus Christ, to minister and not to be ministered unto and watch what the Lord does! 

Behold! How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity

A Christian family that comes together in Scriptural fellowship, service and worship is absolutely beautiful. There are few experiences more precious that singing from the heart with a sincere group of unified believers. 

It will do wonders for your heart, it will be like a clean, cold drink for your soul in the desert. 

Would to God that we would love each other, that we would have tender hearts of compassion and that we would have words and attitudes of hearty, heartfelt encouragement. 

Christians, in our weakness, we must rally around each other, support the hands of the feeble, lift each other up, protect each other, stop complaining and start loving and serving. 

Whoever may be reading this-people do love and care for you-and most importantly-God loves you so very much. Don't quit. Don't be lead astray. Keep the faith. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

that scandalous Grace Gospel

Christ said "It is finished" yet many people preach all sorts of additives to the pure Gospel.

SOME people say that you have to get baptized or be a good person or join a Church to be saved

But others

tell you that your INTITIAL salvation is by grace and that's all well and good but you only grow and mature when you do YOUR PART.

They want you to take a "Do-More" pill that will make you more spiritual. But that IS by definition Religion. I'm not into religion. I'm into the Gospel.

The Apostle Paul faced so much controversy b/c he preached the GOSPEL and the Gospel is scandalous to religionists.

I believe that the BLOOD OF JESUS is total redemption. That it cleanses completely, redeems and JUSTIFIES> Justification doesn't ONLY make me innocent/forgiven it also makes me Righteous!

I am not called to follow Jesus' example.
I am called to be Jesus-by being One with Him. In Galations it says yet NOT I but CHRIST liveth in me.....I am one with Christ by His Holy shed blood. I didnt' just acknowledge a theological/doctrinal truth-no the new birth is a supernatural mystical union-something miraculous happened at the new birth. It is a reality not just an idea.

Sometimes we think some person or some preacher, someone we look up to-has reached this righteousness thru their own merits that we should hope to achieve some day. But that concept is more religious than of faith in the Gospel. When you're sealed by the Holy Ghost at the moment of your new birth, you are capable of the same 'closeness' with God and experiences of His power as anyone else.

You don't climb the ladder of spirituality thru discipline and character-building and spiritual activity and efforts. There's no ladder to climb-you crossed over that bridge at the Cross. You can do ANYTHING God asks you to do because HE is the One who empowers you!

Grace Grace Grace Grace Grace Grace Grace It is ALL in HIS SUFFICIENT Grace! As long as you depend on self and self-effort you will be disapointed. You just need to REST in the Grace of God. And that means spiritual rest, it doesn't mean you aren't busy on the adventure and fruit-bearing of the victorious Christian life-it means that you are at peace in your spirit and youre not rying to be something you're not you're being what you are-a child of the most High God!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Love of the Brethren

We have heard a LOT of preaching from our good Pastor at my Church about the Love of God. You can just bathe yourself in the vast ocean of the love of the Lord Jesus Christ. You can grow in your knowledge of His love and grace every single day-it is endless.

What is DESPERATELY needed is for that love to overflow from inside of us and touc everyone around us, The Apostle John said the world would KNOW US by our love for one another.

The TRAGEDY is that the postmodern Church is PLAGUED and branded with bitterness, arguments, pride, hypocrisy and ennvy. Division. Division is everywhere. And it is a HORRIBLE testimony and Satan LOVES IT. Satan thrives on magnifying the faults of others and making a mountain out of a mole-hill so that the attention is constantly off of Jesus Christ and on others. When our attention is on our Loving Saviour and Lord-we only see others through His eyes of love- but while we claim with our lips to be serving a righteous cause and worshipping God- that is not evidenced by the way we treat each other and demonstrate a critical spirit.

Sadly, MOST Christins would agree whole-heartedly that a critical spirit, pride and hypocrisy are poisoning God's people but they would Immediately point the finger at those around them. The irony is truly profound! No matter how much we grieve over the spiritual situation of finger-pointing and mean-spiritedness among God's people we always think it means God's other people and not ourselves. We want to fix OTHER people's ritical spirit, not our own. When others gossip, it hurts us, when we gossip, we are just being helpful and recording prayer requests ; )

We often think that if we do RIGHT-and uphold correct doctrine, and have good standards, and are pasisonate-that we will have an atmosphere ready and prepared for revival. BUT humility, broken-heartedness, kindness, forgiveness, broken-ness MUST be present for revival. So as long as we agnify ourselves instead of Christ. As long as we are disgusted with other people's sins instead of broken about our own, whenever we judge someone else, are angry and disappointed with them,....we are NOT prepared for revival.

The Holy Spirit will bring out a sweet spirit in you!

If there is not a feeling of love and tenderness among God's people, something is wrong, and so many people will read these lines and think to themselves yeah, that's right-people need to be sweet to me I am so sick of people's bad attitudes! But that is exactly ALL of our problems. We are all sick of everyone else's bad attitude. We want them to be sweet. We want them to be kind to US> But it has to start with yourself. Overcome evil with good. Don't be hurt when others gossip about you when you also gossip about them. Don't be hurt when someone is critical when you know you are also critical.

When you see your brother in a fault, you should feel compassion NOT anger. We act as if people are sinning against us and take it personally, when really they are doing the same exact thing WE ARE DOING-they are sinning against God, just like we are.

We only feel like we can point the finger and look down on people when we think we are better. We have justified our own attitudes and explained them away because people just don't understand us, and God knows our heart and God understands, well the problem is-others feel just the same way about themselves as you do about yourself. We ALL justify ourselves and give ourselves the benefit of the doubt but judge others hearts and condemn them.

We are not going to have revival until we are BROKEN about our state. Many times we feel broken, but it is broken for everyone else. We need to be broken over our own hearts.

I firstly pray that God will heal my heart from this horrrible poison of judgmentalness, and a critical spirit. I have not yet put my finger on where it springs from. But I know too often my spirit is not sweet. And I know when many of us Christians get together our 'fellowship' is not uplifting but discouraging and critical. May God forgive us. and help us to build each other up and to have compassion and tender heartedness.