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Friday, January 28, 2011

Journey of Life

The fog was so thick that you could cut it with a knife. It was about 7:15 am and I had to turn on my head lights for oncoming vehicles because the visibility was so bad. The roads from Fayette to Columbia are hilly and winding, low valleys and high peaks. It is a beautiful sight during these snow filled winter days! A winter wonderland is what I would call it.
The Lord speaks to me through his creation and this day was no different. As fog consumes the scenery around me, so my troubles consume me. I was beginning to feel as if God had left me...I could not see Him or feel Him...the worries of my life began to drown out the truths that I have hidden in my heart...then it happened. "I will never leave you, Ang.." He whispered to my spirit.
As I was driving along, I could vaguely see the tail lights of the car in front of me. It was like the Lord said, "See if you look hard enough, I am always before you." I then entered a low valley and the fog began to lift and the car in front of me was completely visible. Then I looked in my rear view mirror and noticed a truck behind me....
You see in our lowest valleys of life, the Lord showed me that He is before us and behind us! He will not leave us! The fog represented my worries and when I worry, I can't focus on God. Notice something, when I hit the lowest point of my valley, He is so visible, so real. When I am at the peak of my mountain, there He is again, so visible, so real...but on the way up or down the "mountain of life" our worries will consume us, just as the fog consumes the scenery. We have to keep truckin' along even though we can't see Him because He is always there!
Thank You Lord, for the way you speak to my heart. I love you and on this "journey of life", through the valleys and the peaks, help me to fix my eyes on You!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

"God D*** It!"

Do you misuse the Lord's name and don't even realize it? In Exodus 20:7 God instructed Moses to tell His people not to use His name in vain. “You must not misuse the name of the Lord your God. The Lord will not let you go unpunished if you misuse his name."
The other day I was at my son's basketball game and the coach yelled,"Jesus Christ!" because he was mad at a referee. I was highly offended! I actually felt heat coming from my face and I said,"Hey, Jesus has nothing to do with this!" You should of seen some of the looks I got. I think it was more of a shock for people to hear me say that than for them to hear the Lord's name being misused.
God's name has become more of an ordinary "household name" that is used without thought. There is no AWE to His name anymore at least for most people.
I started to think about how flippantly some will use the Lord's name in vain and may not realize they are misusing His name. I came across this scripture in Matthew today and the bible is clear...Matthew 12:34b "For whatever is in your heart determines what you say." Why do you think Jesus spoke of this? Why do you think God had Moses tell His people not to misuse His name in Genesis?
I think God was and still is making a point! "I AM holy and my name should be feared and reverenced!"
Many who say they love the Lord Jesus will misuse his name by saying, "God d*** it!" or "Jesus Christ" when they are upset or maybe have nothing else to say.
This should offend every born again Believer! When I hear T.V shows or movies using my Lord's name in vain, it burns me up! It truly hurts me, because it hurts the Holy Spirit which lives in me. Do we fully understand He is Holy God! Holy therefore, we have to treat Him, His Name, His Word with the utmost respect and honor! We must be careful of what we say and also what we do. If we call ourselves Christians then we must honor our Lord by reverencing His NAME. The NAME which is above all NAMES!
May the sweet name of Jesus, God Almighty be HIGHLY HONORED among His children! Think about it this way...How do you feel when someone calls your mom, dad, sibling, son or daughter a bad name? That same feeling that makes us want to rip their head off, should come when we hear our Lord's name misused! He deserves so much more than we offer Him!

Matt. 12:33-35
33 “A tree is identified by its fruit. If a tree is good, its fruit will be good. If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad. 34 You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say. 35 A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart.

If you are a Believer in the Lord Jesus, then your heart has been made clean and should produce good things from the inside out! Let's keep His name HOLY, FOR HE IS HOLY AND WORTHY OF PRAISE!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Are you a living sacrifice?

Romans 12:1 NLT "And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him."

For a while now, I have been contemplating the meaning of being a living sacrifice. Several thoughts have come to mind, on what God is asking His children. Also, what He is not asking of His children.

First of all, Paul is pleading with his brothers and sisters in Christ,(this means you and I) to give our bodies(lives)to God because of ALL He did on the cross. I looked up a few scriptures on sacrifice and what God desires most from His children and this is what I found...
Psalm 51:17 NLT "The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God."
Hebrews 10:5 NLT "That is why, when Christ came into the world, he said to God, “You did not want animal sacrifices or sin offerings, But you have given me a body to offer."
Hosea 6:6 HCSB "For I desire loyalty and not sacrifice,the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings."
The first step is the obedience of a repentant heart, a broken spirit. If there is anything in our lives that is hindering the spirit, we must repent! The second step is knowing our bodies our not our own. Once we have asked Jesus to forgive our sins and be our Savior, He has the "rights" to our bodies. We have been bought with the price of His blood that was shed on the cross.(Read 1 Cor. 6)The third step is to make a commitment to follow Him no matter what. He desires our loyalty! He desires for us to gain more knowledge of Him!Ya know they say knowledge is power!

The bottom line is we owe Jesus our lives for what He did for us on the cross over 2,000 years ago! We should be willing to lay our lives on the alter, to be poured out for His use! One thing to remember, it's easy for a living sacrifice to get up and walk away when life with Christ becomes painful or a bit uncomfortable. Because God is not a "puppet master", He will never force us to stay on the alter to be a "sacrifice".

Yet He desires us to be completely surrendered, a living sacrifice that is holy and acceptable(only because of Christ)to God. When we surrender our will to His,then we will know His perfect will! That is when we truly worship our King!

I pray for each of us to dig deeper into the Word of God and find ourselves fully surrendered to Him! There truly is no better place to be than on the alter, poured out ready to be used by God!