The American Church has always stood strong on fighting for life in the past; we cannot stop now because of our ignorance. I strongly believe that this is Satan’s plan. If he can keep us ignorant, then we will fall for anything.MANIPULATED MINDS (PART TWO)
Previously we discussed the fact that faith is a risk. “
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1, ESV)
To have faith, is when one believes in something even when they cannot see it in the moment. It is a hope. To have faith can be defined as, complete trust or confidence in someone or something. And the last time we spoke on such a faith, we were touching on the entrusting of God Himself.
I know it has been a while, so allow me to remind you that this faith we initially spoke on was primarily about salvation and the importance of trusting God with your life, but today we are going to discuss faith in a different way.
Now that we have eternal salvation, which is kept in the safe hands of God (1 Peter 1:3-5), God has given a challenge. He has given us the challenge to believe in His mighty works like never before.
Laugh at me if you must, but I 100% trust God that He will answer my prayers. God has shown me in many ‘little’ ways that He will show me and my family a miracle. There are many things doubt will try to defeat. Although this time I am not allowing the storm to master over me. The only Master I have is my Lord and Savior! (Can I get an amen?)
If you read through the Word of God you will see many instances where Jesus healed. He healed various kinds of people: the lame, the blind, the possessed, and more! Jesus told His disciples that in His power, they could do the same. Let me be the one to tell you, if no one has already, that we as children of God can do the same! When we do anything in love and in His name, we glorify the Father.
You may be wondering what miracle I am seeking. My family and I are seeking the FULL healing of my father-in-law, Mark, who was diagnosed with ALS. Now, you may be shaking your head and thinking this is an impossible request, & the enemy might be highlighting his decline, but my God said, IF YOU ASK ANYTHING IN MY NAME I WILL DO IT! The key to an answered prayer is firm belief.
So in this belief, will you join me in prayer without wavering?…
“But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.” (James 1:6, ESV).
I believe in the power of prayer. I believe God has given His people authority to tread on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy (Luke 10:19).
I believe, do you?
And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”Mark 16:15-18, ESV
“For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”Matthew 5:46-48, ESV
Jesus has called us to stand out from the world. This includes the way we react.
Before the Holy Spirit taught us new ways from our prior, we thought certain reactions were acceptable.
Yet as you see, we are to be the bigger person. Though hard, we are to reflect the same love that God provides. This reflection shows the world whom we belong. For He explains that when we go against the normal and decide to use our actions supernaturally, we then even sharpen our own iron. Like Father, like son. Like Father, like daughter.
This world will never see what God intends for it to if we as Christians sit on the back burner, be hypocrites, and not apply what we are told in the Word to everyone we encounter.
We won’t become better versions of ourselves either if we continue to give ourselves excuses as well.
Our neighbors, our enemies, may not have the push they need for a heart change, if we aren’t moving in the perfectiveness of our faith.
Radical love teaches us to get out of our natural habits. To love beyond our natural capabilities. They are unnatural responses to unjust circumstances. Every heartache, set back, and discouragement, is an opportunity. Let us be like our Father, and use what the enemy means for harm, for good.
The foundation is the base starting point to anything you are desiring to build.
This beginning piece will be an essential factor before you go on to the next levels of your project.
How do we make sure the foundation is built the way we need it to be, to withstand every storm?
It must be founded on the Rock. This Rock is Jesus.
Whatever your plan is, without including Jesus 1͎s͎t͎ , all else will ultimately fail.
To not have Him in mind first is foolish (Matthew 7:26), because without Him, you cannot do anything!
As Christians, we should learn from our past. I don’t know about you all, but before I had Jesus by my side, my mistakes dug me into a deep hole. One that I wasn’t able to get out of my own, in my own strength. If it wasn’t for my Savior, I would have continued into the depths of chaos and fears. Who knows where I would have ended up!
Thankfully, God met me in my mess. He grabbed my hand and insisted this was no longer a battle I had to fight on my own. Where no one else was to be found in my times of need, He revealed to me that He was. I just had to be willing to finally surrender and lean into His hope.
“And He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.”Colossians 1:17, ESV
He is the Vine, we are the branches (John 15:5).
To be successful in anything that we do, we must make sure God is first in our lives and we remain in Him.
We have been appointed by God, not to do the things of the kingdom on our own (John 15:16).
If we are not grounded and united with the Father we are more than likely going to fall at some point.
Save yourself the trouble and enter His rest.
Our talents, gifts, and light do not come from our own doing, but from the Maker Himself!
Today let us examine our relationships. Which ones? All of them.
Your relationship with God should be first in your life. If this is not the case for you, then this is one area in your life you must cater to first and foremost. Next, if you have a spouse, you and them have become one flesh (Genesis 2:24). Thus because of this your relationship should also be of importance to you. It should be second on your list. Your parents, your imitate family (if they are in your life) should also be an aspect within your life that you can lean in toward. After all the command, “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” (Exodus 20:12, ESV), still applies (Matthew 10:37, Matthew 15:4, & Matthew 19:19). Then everyone else accordingly. (Friends Proverbs 17:17, Bosses/Coworkers 1 Peter 2:18, Matthew 5:16, Colossians 3:22, the government(s) 1 Peter 2:18…..so on and so forth).
These are just some logistics before I begin, but this is not necessarily all we will cover.
Today, I would like to go over relationships as a whole. Meaning, this is something we should be doing in all of our relationships, no matter which one it is.
This ‘something’ is honesty.
Honesty is important in every single relationship. When you are not honest with someone, you are even lying to yourself. In reality, it is also relevant to note that when you are not being honest with yourself or the people around you, you are not walking in accordance to the spirit. Walking in step with the spirit means that our hearts and thoughts are aligned with the Father (Galatians 5:25). Honesty gives us a clear conscience.
“Whoever gives an honest answerProverbs 24:26, ESV
kisses the lips.”
Being an honest person means you are being your truest self. Those who are free in Christ are free indeed (John 8:36). If you feel you cannot be honest with the people around you, then you really need to reevaluate who it is you are allowing yourself to be affected by. There are so many questions we could ask ourselves to get us back on track, but the key thing is that we must fix our faults as soon as we recognize them. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to get to the solution. Please, allow me to explain.
As we spoke about in reading, “Sometimes“, we learned that the tough times we go through in this life are no exception to the Body of Christ. IF you accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior your life has become new in Him, but that doesn’t mean that everything is picture perfect. Despite now being a child of God, we are still temporally living in the world, but just because we are in the world, doesn’t mean we should respond the way the ones of the world do.
“So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.“Galatians 5:16-18, NIV
Whether we are being honest or facing honesty, sometimes this can be a hard thing to handle. Sometimes we don’t want to face what is in front of us, but I encourage you today to fight against that. Stop running away from your problems and instead try tackling them and work through them.
By doing this and applying it to your life, you will be walking according to the spirit and will of God.
It might not be easy but that is okay. It may be a fight but it is a fight worth fighting for.
Our spirit is consistently fighting against our flesh, but it is up to us to reason it out (see Isaiah 1:18).
One last thing before you go.
To be honest, is showing you love the one you are being honest with. Is it not?
Thank you for reading. To read more on friendships please click here to read.
If this helped you and blessed you, I pray you will also take the time to be in the Word of God. 1 Peter Chapter 2 maybe! 😊
Have you ever took the time to think about deception?
Maybe most of us have but we never think that we ourselves could be the ones who fall into the trap(s).
We live in a world where a lot of information is shown to us in such a speedily, vast, and in an ever-increasing obstacle.
Real source or Fake source can be of a common issue.
It can form a huge amount of confusion and restlessness.
Know that this is not of God.
The reason I am here writing to you today is because deception has run rapid and not enough people are noticing.
We have grown comfortable to the evil around us and grown cold to our Living God.
As the Body of Christ, are we living out our lives for the One who died for us?
Are we becoming conformed to this world that is not our home?
Please hear me out.
We do not fight against flesh and blood.
If you read the verse above from Genesis 3:1 carefully, you will learn something about our biggest foe. He is the most subtil compared to any other beast. This means he is cunning, crafty, and deceitful. Just as he had tricked our ancestors in believing the forbidden fruit was desirable and innocent, he too is seen as such.
Just as that evil serpent did in the days of old, he continues to work against our good. He continues to work in ways people today are completely oblivious to. Why? Well because of that very thing, we are too blind to notice or to care.
We fight against one another instead of taking the time to seek the real cause.
We do the work of the enemy for him.
Thus, because we have moved from the garden life style in the beginning, to the more modern approaches to living in the present, we have lost touch with the fact that maybe these things, these spiritual occurrences, could very well happen in todays world.
“But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:3, ESV); You think to yourself, oh that will never happen to me! Do you remember the same thing happened to Peter? Peter denied Jesus 3 times! (See Luke 22:54-62). If you are not continually walking in the Spirit, if you are not continually abiding in the Lord, and sticking close to Him during these times, there could be a chance that it could happen to you too. Maybe not the same exact way it happened to Peter, but nonetheless we should be looking at our temporary world through our spiritual lenses.
I pray that this will give you a new spark. One that will maybe question your own doings and push you to seek the Lord for all things. The life of the Christian is never boring. Or at least it shouldn’t be. There is always something we could be working on in ourselves, or praying for even in others. If you haven’t in a while, take a look at the environment around you. We cannot avoid the evil around us even if we wanted to. God did not give us a spirit of fear but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7). This post is not to ignite fear, but to hopefully empower you to realize the power within you to fight the good fight around us. (Please see Ephesians 1:13; John 16:13; & Romans 8:14)
“And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.”Revelation 12:9, KJV
Hey! How are you all?
I know it has been quite some time since I have reached out here on my blog. My sincere apologies to you all.
If you are still here checking in or stopping by for reference, thank you and you are always welcome here.
Today, I thought I would write a little something just to say hello. To inform you that I am still around and behind the scenes God is working! Some new things may be coming so be on the lookout for those. Although, why the absence? Well, usually when I write it is when I am led to do so. If I am not led I usually do not write it out! Also, I have been extremely busy with work, school, family, and making sure I include the Lord in everything I do.
Know you are not forgotten. You are loved. & greatly appreciated.
Before I go, remember what Jesus accomplished for all. He defeated death and sin. He won the victory. He gave us the ability to fix an estranged relationship with the Father. The gospels remind us that He came wrapped in flesh, born of a virgin, died, was buried, rose on the third day, and ascended. “When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight.” (Acts 1:9)
Yet while Jesus ascended into Heaven. There is a promise that some forget that I want to make light of today.
One day, He will return.
“ While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:10-11)
Just let that sink in for a moment.
“looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2)
I am going to leave it there for now. I pray the Holy Spirit will fill in the blanks for you.
Hope your Holy Weekend is filled with God’s blessings, peace, and joy.
Pastor J.D. Farag really nailed it on the head this morning. Per usual, I always love to hear his sermons. This mornings topic was titled, “God Hears Your Cries”. It was a very fitting title for the current season my family and I are in.
We often pray to God and while we pray to God I would hope you are being expectant of an answer. No matter what the answer may be. Here in the above Psalm we see something we all can relate to, the psalmist is seeking for answers. Pleading with the Lord, “Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!”.
Our family is going through some uncertainty and bad news at the moment. Therefore I can most certainly relate to the heartache this psalmist may have been feeling.
One of the things we can recognize within these scriptures is the fact of who we are compared to God. We need God’s grace. We need His mercy. Without Him we don’t have hope.
‘But know that the Lord has set apart the godly for himself; the Lord hears when I call to him.’(Psalms 4:3, ESV)
Verse three is also encouraging. As children of God we are favored. We are set apart for Him and His glory. Here is reassurance that the Lord indeed hears our cries. As you continue to read the Psalms of this particular chapter, it gives instruction for us of what we should do. (I strongly encourage you to read it on your own time to get the fulfillment you need)
- Do not be angry
- Be still/silent with God
- Ponder and do a heart check
- Trust in your Father
Our feelings can often be more than we can bare. Yet, I was reminded of a couple of verses I wanted to share:
‘When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.’(Isaiah 43:2, ESV)
and the other
‘But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.’(James 1:6, ESV)
The first example is one of my favorite pieces, because of my history with God. Once upon a time I was out at sea, and during my trials God revealed to me that I had a new Captain in charge of my life. Him.
Sometimes we have to retrace our thoughts. Sometimes we need to remember where God brought us out of since the beginning. When we pass through these deep waters, God WILL be with us. There is no doubt when God speaks to us, none. He WILL be with you.
Don’t we remember? Faith is a risk, and with taking on this risk, comes unwavering faith. When we read- God will be with us, do we believe it? When we read- God is for us, do we believe it? OR when we read- God will deliver us, DO WE BELIEVE IT? Do we? We must, or else we will find ourselves allowing the troubles over take us. Allowing our enemies think that they have a shot of destroying the very thing God intends of rescuing you out of.
We may be weak, for God remembers that we are only dust (Psalms 103:14). Just as Pastor J.D. brights to the light, our brokenness is undervalued. What does this mean? It means that our weakness is actually very valued in the eyes of God. “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” (Psalms 34:18, ESV). Though our hearts beg for reassurance and rescue, we have the promise the Lord is not only near, but will redeem. Now here is my favorite part of all:
‘Depart from me, all you workers of iniquity; For the Lord has heard the voice of my weeping. The Lord has heard my supplication; The Lord will receive my prayer. Let all my enemies be ashamed and greatly troubled; Let them turn back and be ashamed suddenly.’(Psalms 6:8-10, ESV)
It isn’t us who shall be afraid, no, but our enemies who should be very afraid. Our God HAS heard our requests. He HAS heard the cry of His children. Now expect God’s response.
You can see Pastor J.D’s teaching here:
I felt led to share my thoughts that I had written down from my devotional. I pray it is helpful.
We tend to get so caught up in trying to be Biblically correct, (which can be good), that we miss the ‘mark’ or ‘point’ sometimes. Knowing all the information that we are feeding ourselves, doesn’t necessarily always give us the fulfillment we need.
God’s mystery makes us thirst for more. Which I feel He desires. He wants this relationship between us to be equally sought out and genuine.
When we feel like we aren’t as close to Him, we can look at all that He has created. The miracle of life and the very intricate design of each single creation. Thinking to ourselves, were can I find God’s hand here?
“I love you.”, He says.
He loves us.
I also think we get too caught up in what everyone else says about God or what everyone else says in general. When we should be seeking our own individual intimate time.
The internet can be a good resource, but it can also turn into a bad habit. With all things, balance is needed.
When we fill ourselves up with His Word and Presence, effectively, with no distractions, we can have His truths. We can affirm for sure what He directly wants us to know.
“casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”1 Peter 5:7, ESV
The above verse goes well with today.
He wants to hear everything little thing we have to say. Bottling it all up is no good, for either of us, (God or ourselves), and this is how we get renewed. This is where He can tell us His way versus our own.
Embrace God’s mystery and wonder.
It’s okay not to completely know.
“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (Matthew 6:34, ESV)
“For we were never made to ponder big questions on our own. We are made to share our thoughts, our questions, our confusions, our frustrations―and ponder them with Him and allow Him to teach and father us into greater understanding.”From rush via Gather Ministries- “Healing The Hurt”, Renew Your Mindset
Allow God to be God. Allow yourself to be still with Him.
Not just for 10 minutes either. Our relationship with Him matters. It truly does. More than we know.
Did you know that trusting in our Heavenly Father and seeking His Word is healthy not only for our spirits and minds, but for even the bones of our flesh? (see Proverbs 3:8)
Isaiah 55:10-11 shares that God means what He says. When we spend time meditating on what He is saying to us, it is important not to just filter it through and store it as information. His Words bring truth. His Words bring meaning. His Words produce life.
I have been wanting to talk about this for a few days now.
Lately, I have been learning about what being a new creature in Christ is truly all about.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
— II Corinthians 5:17 NKJV
Let us look at this mini devotional to begin our conversation and brainstorm our minds:
“As we close 2020, reflect on the many times you had courageous and strong faith—believing in the unseen. You rose against adversity, and saw beyond distressing news. You envisioned the brightness of better days. As you stand on the edge of a new year, know that you have developed your vision to see possibilities rather than problems.”
Lord, You bless me with great faith. You take away my doubts and nudge me to believe the best is yet to come.
Notice how in 2 Corinthians 5:17 it states, “ALL THINGS have become NEW”. When we are reading God’s Word I love to pay attention to the little details like that. Sometimes it may seem little but it can speak volumes. What has been brought to my mind all throughout the recent holiday season we had is that God truly means what He says. When He says all things, He means all things. One of the things out of many I would like to concentrate on though is new eyes. Seeing with new eyes can show us a little bit of how God wants us to view the world and people within the world. Getting ourselves to do this on the other hand can seem like a battle in itself, but we have to remember similarly what I mentioned in my previous blog post, “we are training for God’s will and the coming kingdom.” If we loose sight of what it means to be new in Christ, we will lose the goal that Jesus has set out for us.
This life with God is a dance
You take one step forward, then He is there to lead the next.
This dance can be beautiful. At peace, calm, and sound, if you allow it.
You must seek His step and take control of your relationship in Him.
Trusting that each foot forward will be in perfect alignment with God’s good will.
Thus, allowing yourself to see with the new eyes God can give you, will take you in a new place with Him.
Some tips with this lesson:
- Always set aside time to dwell with God, alone. This will allow yourself to re-adjust from “reality”. Talk with God about how He wants you to see a bit differently. Ask Him to show you perhaps even how He sees a particular situation.
- Next rethink the relationships that surround you. Your family, your friends, coworkers and even strangers. How do these people make you feel? (Good, bad, anxious?) What ever it may be, look at them with fresh eyes. Where do you see God’s hand? If you don’t see it or cannot see anything positive in the moment, how might you be able to change this? How might God see the person that is frustrating you in the moment? How would Jesus handle it?
- Lastly, the negativity within our government(s), society(s), & home(s). “Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered” (Hebrews 5:8, ESV). Learn from what you go through! Instead of saying, “why me”, ask: “God what are you teaching me here?”. Instead of seeing the trial, see the refining process. See and be aware that God’s plan is always in effect.
"Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4:16, ESV)