Category Archives: Faith

Fear Is Evil, But You Can Be Free At Last

Fear not, live in peace.

Fear not, live in peace.

Fear is evil. Call it stress, anxiety, worry — it’s still fear and one of the worst killers there is. Not only does it ruin your faith, it will kill your body. Stress kills and it’s so unnecessary. It is a very effective attack of the enemy, but there is an awesome offense against it. It’s called trust.

God tells us over and over and over to fear not. He really is a good Father, and like a good Father, He loves His children with limitless love. Imagine a parent encouraging a toddler to walk. A loving parent will be right there with her to make sure that, when she falls, and she will, that she won’t hurt herself. The parent will hold onto her hands and be there for her every step. They will rejoice over and comfort and protect that child because the child is precious to them.

Can you believe that you are that precious to God? In order to trust the way you are meant to, you have to understand how much you are loved. If that’s hard to do, it’s because you’ve been hurt in the past and love comes with bad memories. You have to let them go. You may need to repent and forgive, a lot, until you can love freely again, until you can receive love again. The Holy Spirit will help you do that. Ask Him to help you. He’ll show you the areas that are hurting you. Follow His lead and allow Him to clean up that old pain.

When you know that God is holding your hand as firmly as any good parent would, you know you can trust Him. The job layoff, the car repair, the kids’ tuition, the doctor’s bills, everything that seems to demand more of us than we have to give will become something we just hand over to our Father. Trust Him. Your fear won’t help, but your faith will.

I find that I have to consciously put myself into a place of peace to trust. I have to say no to fear and invite the peace of God into my heart. When I’m calm, I can hear Him. When I’m fearful, I cannot. But when I relax in His peace, I give Him the freedom to work things out for me. And it really works. Are there times when I forget and stress a bit? Yes. But I always repent and ask Him to forgive me, and then I go back to that place of trust again.

Learn to trust God like you mean it. It’s always been His plan to take care of you and bless you, if you let Him.

A Young Boy Shows Us How To Trust God

Sometimes we can be like Eve and suddenly stop believing that God will do what He says He will do. God says that He will be with us and never forsake us. He says that He will protect us and love us like no one else. This came home to me in a story from social media. It turns out to be a year old, but still a great story.

A young boy was kidnapped in Atlanta and what he did was amazing. He sang a gospel song over and over again for three hours until the kidnappers threw him out of the car. This boy trusted God with his life and God protected him. See the story here.

Just believeThis is our God. If we would only believe what He says about Himself, we would live such amazing lives. Stuff will still happen, the boy was kidnapped, but trusting God will make a way where there was no way.

Now, what about those issues in your life that you don’t know what to do with? Believe God. Fear not and trust Him. Put it all in His hands, watch, and learn. The only reason you’re not seeing help is because you haven’t really believed that God will do what He really can do. All that little boy had to do was trust God and his life was saved. Your issue is probably not that scary, but the size of the issue doesn’t matter to God. Just believe. Your testimony is about to happen.

 

It’s Not About Bible Study Or Signs And Wonders

There’s a lot to be said for Bible study. It teaches you the truths of God and the stories of what He has done. But that’s just knowledge. There’s no life in just reading the Bible. Knowledge of God is not the same thing as salvation. The demons know God better than the average person who claims to be a Christian.

And then there are those who live and breathe the experience of signs and wonders. When God is present, anything can happen and there are groupies who seek after that as their goal in life. Signs and wonders are cool. They really are, but seeking after miracles is like a child following daddy around hoping for candy from his pockets.

Jesus warned that He would turn away those He did not know, even if they did signs and wonders. The intimacy of salvation is not in knowing the Bible or experiencing the unusual. It’s in desiring the heart of God. This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek after Him, of those who seek Your face. (Ps 24:6)

Love theEmmanuel is intimate with us. Lord your God with all your heart. Be drawn into Him. Share His love, His joy, His peace. You are His lover as much as He is yours. Seek His face. Seek His heart. Ask to know His thoughts. Emmanuel is God with us, in us, for a reason. He wants intimacy, communion. Desire Him, and the bells and whistles will follow.

God Doesn’t Care That You’re Not Perfect

God doesn't care that you're not perfect.We are all called to serve the Lord somehow. All of us. We are all called to make disciples , teaching them what Jesus taught. Many people will never obey this command because they think it’s the job of pastors and ministers. They are wrong. But there are others who understand the commandment, but feel unworthy to obey. This is not a bad thing.

I understand the feeling of unworthiness. I too struggle with feeling like the last person on the earth that should be discipling anyone. The enemy can get into our heads and make us feel like losers who don’t deserve to go to heaven, let alone lead anyone else there.

But the reason I say that unworthiness is not a bad thing is because it shows a level of humility that God can use. I recently had a heart to heart talk with God about why I was not the one He could use to do anything because of all the bad things I felt I had inside me. I know I am a work in progress, but I didn’t feel that He could use me until He took care of my laundry list.

But God just smiled. He wasn’t surprised by my list, and He didn’t change His mind. He said He would use me despite my frailties. He would show Himself great and it wouldn’t have anything to do with me at all. In fact, if I had the opinion that I was “all that”, He couldn’t use me because I’d take His glory.

Remember Gideon? That encourages me. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that we will ever become perfect here on earth. We look through a glass darkly, but then we will see face to face. We know in part. God is aware of our humanity and He chooses to use us anyway.

Do not beat yourself up about your shortcomings. We all have them. Keep your heart clean. Confess what you need to confess and give everything to Jesus. Admit that you don’t have all the answers and trust Him. Allow God to show Himself through you — a clay vessel shining with the light of heaven.

God Did Not Give You Cancer

Learn to love God with everything in you.God did not give you cancer — or MS, or a broken leg, or a failed marriage, or [insert your life problem here]. God does not give us cancer to make better people out of us, or to see what we’re made of. If your natural father did that, he’d be thrown into prison.

If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your  heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him! (Luke 11:11-13)

If your natural Father wouldn’t give you cancer, it doesn’t make sense that God would. In fact, God promises to protect us.

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. (Psalms 91:1)

It’s a promise, but it is contingent on the second verse: I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” (Psalms 91:2) Your trust in God has to be more than claiming to be a Christian. You have to put your entire life in His hands. You have to love with Him with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind. You have to hear His voice and be in relationship with Him. 

Having head knowledge of God without a heart relationship is not what will protect you. Jesus said, My sheep hear my voice. (John 10:27) Learn to hear His voice in your heart. Learn who He is. Wrap your head around how much He loves you. Learn to love Him back with every fiber of your being.

When you live in a love relationship with God, you are protected under the shadow of His wings. Will bad things happen to you? Probably, we still live in this world, but the power of God in your life when you have His protection is an entirely different dimension than claiming to know Him when you don’t.

Stop blaming God. He loves your wildly and passionately. He’s waiting for you to really trust Him. He’s waiting to be your miracle. Decide if you really do love Him with all that you have and square up with Him. It’s time to really live in the kingdom.

It’s Time To Decide What You Really Believe

What do you really believe?If you are a Christian, why do you live in fear, stress, anger? It’s a difficult question, because it makes you look inside where you thought it was all ok. But if you live in fear, stress, or anger, it’s not ok. Something is really wrong. If you live like that, you are no different from the person who does not claim to know Jesus. But you do claim to know Jesus, so why the stress?

The answer is because you don’t believe what you say you believe. Jesus said to fear not. He said to throw our burdens on Him. He said to be filled with His Spirit and live in joy. When we don’t do that, we suffer the consequences and it keeps us up at night.

Go back and read the Bible. Read how it says you should live and ask yourself if you are doing that. Repent and ask God to forgive you for not trusting Him and start all over. You can’t call yourself a Christian if you don’t obey Him. You are not called to pray a prayer of salvation. You are called to live a lifestyle of faith. Read it.  Decide for yourself if you really trust Him. This is your wake up call. It’s time to be who you are meant to be.

Waiting For Answered Prayer

Just believeYou know that God answers prayer. What does He say? If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. (John 14:14) Of course, you have to be in relationship with Him. You have to know you hear His voice — My sheep hear my voice. (John 10:27) But what if you are hearing Him and it seems like your prayers aren’t being answered?

First of all, know that everyone will go through that. It’s wrong to assume that God answers prayers for everyone else but you. We all go through dry spells. It’s what you do during those times that will affect if and when your prayers are answered.

You have to keep believing. You have to remember how much God loves you. There are reasons for the delay. You have to trust Him. If the answer hasn’t come yet, does it mean that it never will? No, it just means that it hasn’t come yet! Maybe there are circumstances that have to change first. Maybe your heart has to change first.

Stay strong in faith. Keep listening for His voice. Be obedient to the things you know you need to do. Praise Him regardless of seeing answers. Praise Him for the answers. If what you want and need is of value to you, there’s no reason to stop believing.

Don’t Be Caught On The Sidelines : There’s Water To Walk On

walk on waterWhy was Peter the only one to hop out of the boat and walk on water? We don’t need to go into what happened next. The point is, he walked on water! What were the other guys doing? Watching him. They were scared. They didn’t believe. They weren’t willing to try it. They missed out.

Are you watching from the sidelines? Are you thinking: I have a job and a family, I go to church, I read my Bible, that’s good for me? No need to change the world? No need to release the kingdom?

Sitting on the sidelines is dangerous. Jesus was pretty cross with the Church of the Laodiceans. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. (Rev 3:) I’m guessing that God is calling you to do something, anything. You may not be responding because you haven’t learned to hear His voice. Or maybe you know exactly what He wants, but you don’t want to do it. Either way… dangerous.

What have you got to lose? I shudder to think. What have you got to gain? Peter walked on water! No one else did. You haven’t been called to the kingdom to do nothing. Time to get before God and find out what He wants. Don’t be scared. It will be awesome once you trust Him.

What To Do When You Stop Hearing God

Knowing God's WillWouldn’t it be great if God sent an angel to us everyday with our instructions for the day? It would make life so much easier without the guess-work. Instead, we’re left to work it out on our own. Sometimes we get a very clear direction for where to go and what to do. Those times great. But along the way, roadblocks can pop up. Our plans don’t work out the way we thought they would. Discouragement can set in.

When that happens, it feels like the phone line to heaven has been dropped. What are we supposed to do? We really wish that angel would come with instructions. But God did give instructions. What was the last thing you know He said? Go back to that and do it.

God will bless a decision to honor His will, whether it’s right on or not. He’s not required to bless a decision made out of rebellion because we don’t like the timing. The roadblocks may pop up, but keep on with what you know to do. Honor the word that you know you got and let Him work it out. Life gets messy, but God will bless your faith to trust Him.

Carry on. You’re closer to your goal than you think.

8 Ways To Check For Spiritual Blindess

We are a people in great need of humility. The problem is, we don’t even realize it. Here’s the big test:

…Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. (I Peter 1:5-9)

Blind? Unable to even see how far away from God we are? This is serious. It means that we are in danger of walking away from God without even knowing it. What are those things again?

  • Faith
  • Virtue (morally good behavior or character)
  • Knowledge
  • Self-control
  • Perseverance (continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties)
  • Godliness
  • Brotherly kindness
  • Love

Get humble before GodStop right now and do a self-check. The Holy Spirit will show you those areas where you are weak. Look at that list and see where you know for a fact that you need help. If moral conduct is a problem, then faith is a real issue. Self-control? Be honest.

If we can’t live with these qualities, then we are not allowing God to change us the way He wants to. It takes a humble heart to repent and ask to be renewed, changed from the inside out. If God is showing you that you have been blind, now is the time to deal with it. Be real. Be humble. Be everything that you are meant to be.