Forgiveness

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Did you ever do anything you knew was wrong or that you regretted? I know I have.  I also know that if I am truly sorry and ask God for forgiveness He will forgive me.  The problem is that until recently I wasn’t “living” what I believed.
I would pray and ask God to forgive me.  I would lay it all at the alter.  Then when I was done, I would take it all back off the alter and carry it with me until it burdened me again.  I would repeat this cycle daily.

Romans 4:7-8 says ““Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the one 
   whose sin the Lord will never count against them

Once I am forgiven it won’t be held against me!  Why I never grasped this concept before is beyond me, but I can’t tell you how freeing it is! Jesus died on the cross to take away my sins.  He paid my debt in full!  It is an amazing feeling to know you are forgiven.

 

Living a Victorious Life in Christ

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God has a purpose for everything and nothing that is done is done outside of His knowledge. He is all knowing and many times things may happen in our life that seem bad, but God does them for a reason. God never means for evil to come upon the ones that love Him. Take a look at these verses:

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Isaiah 55:8,9
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

We cannot see but what’s right in front of our face. We are limited to what our eyes see happening. God sees ALL and knows ALL. He knows exactly what needs to be done in our lives to bring us to that place we need to be. He uses MANY different ways to bring us there. Some ways are not as pleasing as other ways. We are to walk by faith and not by sight. If we get upset over anything that God does in our life, we are not trusting Him and walking by faith knowing that He ALWAYS knows what’s right. And in realizing this we are able to adjust our thinking. Walking by faith is just that… walking and believing God to guide us exactly where He wants us no matter how He brings us there without foreseeing where He has us going. We cannot see our expected end… but God does. If we want to fulfill God’s Will in our life we must trust Him, and trust He is doing exactly what needs to be done in our life to bring us to the place He wants us to be. He tells us to count it all joy and cast all our care upon Him.

James 1:2
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
1 Peter 5:7
Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

He tells us to be content. God will never lead us astray. No matter how bad things appear, He will NEVER leave or forsake you.

Hebrews 13:5
Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Furthermore, God tells us what we should be thinking about.

Philippians 4:8
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Many may say “Well I’m not strong enough yet to cast it all to God and count it all joy”. I just want to say, none of us are strong enough to do it. But if Christ is in you, the strength is in you. The strength comes from putting off the old man and putting on Christ. Christ’s power in you will overcome always and all you have to do is let it. We must make the desision to surrender your ways of thinking and let Christ reign in our mortal bodies.

Romans 8:11
But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

Believe He will do it and He will. If He is in you, He said He will do it. He told us the way. The battle is in our mind. Resist the devil and all the doubt and the devil will flee.

James 4:7
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

There has got to be a time where we say no to the devil and yes to God within ourselves. We cannot continue to walk through life as a defeated Christian saying things like “I’m just not strong enough”… “God’s working on me”… God has done everything He is going to do. Jesus won the victory at the cross. and you have His Word in your hand. Christ in you has ALL the strength and power you need. No more excuses. Don’t let the devil wisper that you’re not good enough. Tell him “WE ALL ARN’T GOOD ENOUGH BUT CHRIST IN ME IS!” Don’t quench the Spirit that is within you. Rise above this battle and start stomping on the enimy. He just want’s to keep you in that rut so you continue to be downcasted. There is NO reason to be downcasted with your Creator on your side! The more Word you learn and the more Word you get inside you the more God will be able to show you these things. They are easy to see because God has so plainly set them before our eyes. These verses I post up here I don’t have to look up. I know them, they are in me. I go to them in my heart every time I need them (and I need them everyday). We ALL need them in us. They are our key to a victorious life! Christ is the Word, and with the Word in you nothing will ever keep you downcasted. He is victorious!

It’s all in how we look at it. You have the power in you right now to ALWAYS live a victorious life because Christ is forever victorious!

Don’t give that strength to the devil. He does not have you defeated. You ARE strong enough! You can let Christ do it through you!

Praise God for His great love :)

*This blog post was written by my wonderful hubby

I Want to be Beautiful

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This seems to be a desire of the majority of girls and women today.  Why do we think we’re not beautiful? Why do we think we’re not good enough? Sure, TV, magazines, and the fashion industry have a lot to do with what we think beautiful is, but it goes deeper than that I believe.  Where are you looking for beauty? Your size? Your complexion? The color or style of your hair?  I don’t think that any of that defines your beauty.  You could have a gorgeous model but if she had a foul mouth, lied and was an awful friend would you still consider her gorgeous?

I heard a saying today that I really like; it is “Pretty is, as pretty does”  When I was little I was told not to act ugly.  You see my actions can also be defined as beautiful or ugly.  I think your perception of an individual and their beauty changes as you get to know them to depending on their behavior.

So what is beautiful?

Proverbs 31:30 says, “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”

I Peter 3:3-4 says, “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”

I believe that when I am obedient to God and I listen to Him that I become more beautiful.  Think about the attributes of Jesus.  He was humble, meek, gentle, and compassionate.  The list goes on.  I want people to be able to say those things about me! When I live the way I am told to in the Bible I will begin to reflect Jesus and when I do that my beauty shines through!

There is a song called “Beautiful” by Bethany Dillon.  The chorus says,

I want to be beautiful, make you stand in awe, look inside my heart and be amazed. I want to hear you say, who I am is quite enough. Just want to be worthy of love and beautiful.

We are all worthy of love because of who God is.  And we are so beautiful to Him! I am going to work on listening and obeying so that my beauty will shine through.


Seeing it From God’s Point of View

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*I must start off by saying I am copying this from a picture, but it is so good that I must share! Now, you may not be saying everything on this list, but I know that I can find more than one thing I’ve said/thought before ;)

We say: “It’s impossible”

God says: “All things are possible”

Luke 18:27 “Jesus replied, ‘What is impossible with man is possible with God.’ “

We say: “I’m too tired”

God says: “I will give you rest”

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

We say: “Nobody really loves me.”

God says: “I love you”

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

We say: “I can’t go on”

God says: “My grace is sufficient”

2 Corinthians 12:9 “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

We say: “I can’t figure things out”

God says: “I will direct your steps”

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

We say: “I can’t do it”

God says: “You can do all things”

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

We say: “I’m not able”

God says: “I am able”

2 Corinthians 9:8 “And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.”

We say: “It’s not worth it”

God says: “It will be worth it”

Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

We say: “I can’t forgive myself”

God says: “I forgive you”

1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

We say: “I’m afraid”

God says: “I have not given you a spirit of fear”

2 Timothy 1:7 “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.”

We say: “I’m always worried and frustrated”

God says: “Cast all your cares on ME”

1 Peter 5:7 “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”

We say: “I’m not smart enough”

God says: “I give you wisdom”

1 Corinthians 1:30 “It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.”

We say: “I feel all alone”

God says: “I will never leave you or forsake you”

Hebrews 13:5b ““Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

We say: “I can’t manage”

God says: “I will supply all your needs”

Philippians 4:19 “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”

 

 

What Am I Settling For?

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On Thursday mornings I attend a ladies’ Bible Study at my church and I love it! We have been going over the names of Jesus.  One of the verses from our study this morning was John 6:35, “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”

The example was given of going grocery shopping when hungry.  Anyone who has done that knows exactly why you don’t :) It seems that things you would never buy suddenly sound very yummy.  In other words you “settle” for whatever is in front of you.

Now when Jesus tells us that He is the “bread of life” I know it’s not physical, but spiritual.  I’ve always grown up in a home where devotions and reading your Bible are important and I really enjoy (and feel the benefits of) it when I’m in the Word daily myself.  I will admit that when I’m busy or crunched for time I don’t always give myself adequate time to spend with God (reading the Bible and/or talking to Him).  Sure, I pray throughout the day and I think about Him, but I haven’t spent that quality time with Him.

Now, thinking back on the grocery illustration I wonder what I’m settling for on those days I don’t have devotions or a quiet time. If I haven’t been filled with wonderful and sustaining “bread” what am I turning to when I’m hungry? I know I feel better when I eat healthy as opposed to junk food or fast food.  And, I know I feel better when I’m filled with spiritual bread (God’s Word).

John 15:1-4 says, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.  You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”

Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

So, I need to remain in Him because apart from Him I can do nothing AND I can do all things through Him because He gives me strength.

Hmmm, this seems like a “duh moment” for me.  Why am I not spending every morning reading and praying? I think I’m gonna work much harder on that ;)