Do Not Fear

“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
    I have called you by name; you are mine.
When you go through deep waters,
    I will be with you.
When you go through rivers of difficulty,
    you will not drown.
When you walk through the fire of oppression,
    you will not be burned up;
    the flames will not consume you.
 For I am the Lord, your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”

Isaiah 43:1b – 3a New Living Translation

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Give True Hope

Rather than exhort someone to “just believe” or encourage a stranger with, “you’ve gotta have faith”, give someone a reason to believe.

Take the time to minister to people where you find them. Listen. Learn about them. Offer them genuine encouragement. Share the love of God.

Share what God has done for you. This is where the power is–where faith germinates, is watered & grows.

Everything that God does for you is not only for you, but for those who are destined to cross your path. It’s not selfish to ask God to heal you. Your healing will be the testimony God uses to draw others close to Him in faith.

“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ. Even when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation! For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer.  We are confident that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in the comfort God gives us.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-7

The Lord wants to bless you and make you a blessing. Let God bless you! Our merciful, generous Father is glorified when His goodness is seen in the lives of His people. That’s why the enemy works so hard to try to stop the blessings of God from flowing in our lives.

But he can’t, so don’t let him:

“You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.” Acts 10:38

Be real and let God be God to you & through you.

Blessings!

Pray for one another

Why God Hates Sin

So many people think that God is vengeful & mean, just sitting on His throne in heaven waiting to zap us with a thunder-bolt every time we do something wrong.

For starters, that image is more appropriate to a pagan God, like Zeus or Odin.

When I speak of God, I am speaking of the One True Living God. God the Creator. Jehovah, El Shaddai. The God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob. God the Father, the One who sent His only Begotten Son, Jesus, who is also God, and the Holy Spirit. The divine Trinity.

I make this distinction for a reason. God, little “g”, represents many different things to different people. When someone says they believe in god, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they believe in the Judeo/Christian God, or Jesus, who is the only one who gives us access to the real, true living God, big “G”:

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” ~ John 14:6

Now that I have laid that foundation, back to the reason for this post: God hates sin. No ifs, ands or buts. Anyone who says differently is trying to sell you something…or deceive you…and is deceived themselves.

Sin is anything that God says is sin, or sinful. Sin is not subject to trends or societal mores. There are no acceptable & unacceptable sins in God’s eyes. That’s a human construct. That is, if the human in question even considers the reality of sin. Many people don’t and are highly offended by the use of the word. Here is one thing the Lord says in regard to sin and sinners:

“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! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes And clever in their own sight!” ~ Isaiah 5:20-21

Good is also whatever God says is good, just so we’re clear. There are many good things that our western society calls bad: monogamy, integrity, obedience to authority, truth, freedom, purity, forgiveness, mercy, etc.

Since I am a parent, a mom, I’m going to share with you what God has shown me in regards to hating sin, from a parent’s perspective. I think anyone, though, who truly loves someone else can relate to the example I’m going to use.

As a parent, I hate anything that has the potential to hurt or destroy my child. Let’s use addiction as an example for this post. What my child may see as good or desirable or harmless, like say drugs or alcohol, I see as a threat to my child’s health & well-being. Just because something is legal or natural does not exempt it from being dangerous. While liquor is legal for adults over 21, how many people’s lives have been destroyed because of someone’s misuse or overuse of beer, wine or distilled beverages? The same applies with drugs, dangerous sexual activity, gambling, food, spending money…whatever. The addicted person is no longer in control of that thing. Instead, the thing is now controlling them.

I am not saying it’s a sin if you drink alcohol. Just please consider what I am saying. As a parent, no matter how young or old your child is, it hurts to see the one you love enslaved to an addiction of any kind. Marriages are destroyed because of addictions. Families break apart, children are scared, scarred & abused because someone in their world is under the control of something stronger than they are. The reality of an alcohol addiction is not the breezy, beachy Corona scene of commercials:

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It more often looks like this:

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or this:

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If your child or loved one is under the control of alcohol, do you have warm, fuzzy thoughts when you see them drunk? Are you happy to see that six-pack enter your house? Is it a pleasant surprise when you find liquor bottles hidden in a closet or stashed under a bed? My guess is you would hate the thing that is contributing toward the destruction of your child, spouse or friend. I know I would.

After a period time you may start to resent and hate the person too, if you’re not careful. After all, they are causing you a lot of emotional pain, possibly physical pain as well.

You hate the thing that is destroying your child. God hates sin, because it destroys the ones He loves…us. And here’s the thing: everyone has sin. Not one person is exempt from the condition or consequences of sin because we are born with it:

“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” Romans 3:23

“If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.” 1 John 1:8

“Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man (Adam), and death through sin, so also death was passed on to all men, because all sinned.” Romans 5:12

Now, as a parent, spouse or friend of someone who is addicted to (*fill in the blank), wouldn’t you do anything to see them set free, healthy & whole?

God has already done something. Sin does not have to hold you in bondage any longer. You’ve heard it before, but hear it again:

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.” John 3:16-17

God is giving you an escape, a way out of the sin that you were born with and can never be rid of on your own.

“Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.…” John 3:18

Just like an addicted person who thinks they can handle their (*fill in the blank) and doesn’t need any help from anyone, we can never do enough good works or be “good enough” in and of ourselves to satisfy the righteous standard of a Holy God.

God punished sin when Jesus, His sinless Son, willing went to the cross & took the sin of the world upon Himself… past, present & future…suffering a punishment we all deserve but are spared when we accept His sacrifice on our behalf.

Haven’t their been instances when someone you love is suffering, and you think, “Oh please Lord, let it be me and not them!” This is what Jesus has done for you. He suffered in your place. He took our sin, and the punishment our sin deserves, because of His unfailing love:

“Greater love has no one than this, that one should lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13

Jesus laid down His life for you. Receive the mercy, cleansing & love He paid such a high price to give to you and be free.

 

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A Good Word

Sharing from today’s Faith Tabernacle prophetic word, posted by Bill Burns:

October 14

THE TRUMPET by BILL BURNS:

Only believe, My dear children, and all things will become possible to you. These are the days in which I will demonstrate Myself to you, and My fire shall indeed fall. The anointing that I have promised shall come to you. These are the days that shall be called the days of victory for those who will fulfill their destiny by walking the path of obedience, says the Lord. Now come; get up from where you are and come forth. Walk on this road that I am preparing for you and you shall see and hear. You shall be delivered and healed. These are the days that you have desired to see and have yearned for. Only believe.

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He’s Got the Power

“…holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these.” 2 Timothy 3:5 New American Standard Bible

This scripture has been coming up in my thoughts for about a week.

It’s such a profound statement! It addresses the issue of people who believe in God, who perhaps believe in Jesus also, yet they refuse to acknowledge His power. These are people who attend church (or don’t),  and are unwilling to believe that the Lord can change people. They don’t believe that He hears them when they pray…if they pray at all…and they refuse to acknowledge that God answers prayers.

These are people who scoff when you say the Lord heals people, or that He can set people free from addictions. They might laugh at you, or politely remain quiet when told that the Spirit of God, the Holy Spirit, comes to live inside of you, when you are born-again.

I say this with complete confidence, because I know the Lord: God heals! God sets people free! He comforts the broken-hearted. His presence drives out fear & anxiety, flooding your soul with peace. He has the power to restore relationships, and to keep you from dangerous, unhealthy ones.

Jesus, through the power of the Holy Spirit, will teach you, guide you and lead you into  God’s good will for your life. He will not fail you, because God keeps His promises.

He is wonderful! If you know Him, you are blessed! If you have just recently started your new life in Christ, spend time with Him in prayer & in the word of God. Be around other people who are seeking Him because their fellowship will help you stay on track. If you don’t know Him yet, be assured that He will welcome you with open arms because He loves you.

There are enough people in the world who think negatively, who speak negatively and who will only contribute to your doubt & unbelief. You don’t have to hang out with them, they will only bring you down and lead you away from Christ. They will be easy to spot, because “They will hold to an outward form of godliness but deny its power. Stay away from such people.” 2 Timothy 3:5

Selah ❤

 

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