Perfection v/s Excellence

In going over the final edits in my book, Depression: State of Mind, I have been striving to get everything perfect. That’s very stressful! Then, the Holy Spirit reminded me that nothing is perfect and I need to strive for excellence instead. Jesus was perfect, but I have flaws… and that’s OK. My imperfections make me who I am.

“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” Romans‬ ‭3:23‬ ‭NLT‬‬ http://bible.com/116/rom.3.23.nlt

It’s getting to the point where I am just stalling and nothing is getting done. If I want to get my book out and start helping others, I need to just do the best I can and let God help me. I will never get it perfect.

“But while I was busy doing something else, the prisoner disappeared!” “Well, it’s your own fault,” the king replied. “You have brought the judgment on yourself.”” 1 Kings‬ ‭20:40‬ ‭NL‬‬T http://bible.com/116/1ki.20.40.nlt

The enemy will always try to hinder your progress if God has you doing something for His kingdom. Darkness does not like the light. The devil doesn’t want God’s people free from their bondage, so he will cause distractions to keep you busy doing other things. I believe that being a perfectionist is distracting us from our calling and destiny. Don’t be pulled into hat trap! I wrote my book in 2015 and it’s still not published. That’s distraction at its finest!

“And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Philippians‬ ‭4:8‬ ‭NLT‬‬ http://bible.com/116/php.4.8.nlt

No Greater Love

Are Christians walking in the love that we were commissioned to walk in? I really don’t think so. If we were, then the world would notice that we were different. As it is, most people can’t tell if someone is a Christian or not. We must do a better job of standing out and setting ourselves apart from the world.

I want to make a change in this world. I don’t want to die without making somebody’s life better. Whether it’s from something I say or something I write, my heart’s desire is that others will be freed from the bondage that the enemy of our souls tried to kill them with. I want others to know the truth about our Lord and Savior, Jesus. He came so that we might have abundant life. Jesus came here so that we can have a good life here, not just in Heaven.

Let’s love others so much that we tell them the truth about their sins. We can’t just hold their hand and lead them to hell by telling them that everything they’re doing is OK and grace covers all. That’s not the truth. When we knowingly sin against God, we are trampling the blood of Jesus. Why would Jesus tell us to take up our cross and follow him, if we could do and act the way the world does?

If we are truly new creations and born again believers, we would long to do  what Jesus commissioned us to do. I don’t want to let Him down. He has never let me down. I want to be different.  I don’t want to be like the world. The world makes me sad. I look at all the churches we have everywhere around where I live, and very few of them are making a difference in this community! I want to make a bigger difference in my community! Who will join me? John 15:13 (NLT), “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” 

 

 

Are you invisible or invincible?

As Christians, we are called to go and preach the good news to all the world. Can we honestly say that we are fulfilling our calling? The Bible tells us that many are called but few are chosen. Is it possible that the few that are chosen by God are the ones that actually walk out their calling? Jesus said for his disciples to go and do even greater works than He did. How many of us have done anything in the name of Jesus? We do all kinds of things that please us or make us happy, but do we take up our cross and follow Jesus…ever? We are invisible as Christians. We stand in the crowd and try to fit in and go unnoticed. God set us apart as Christians! When we accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we became a new creation. That means we were set apart from the world. 

We are invincible! Jesus came to this fallen earth as a man to give us a chance to make a difference. Are we making a difference? It looks like the only difference Christians are making is turning people away from the Gospel instead of the other way around. Our lives are supposed to be a living sacrifice, but instead we cower down like we are defeated and won’t fight for the cause of Christ. Paul said in Philippians 1:21, ” For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” We should be ready to die for what we believe in. How many Christians in other countries are persecuted to the death for their belief? There are many. We are coddled and weak Christians in this country. We have taken for granted the blessings and freedoms that we have received because we are a nation, under God, and we became a useless and powerless Church. If a satanic church can be founded in this Christian country, then we have failed! There is now an alter to Baal in New York City and very few people seem to care. It looks like we have failed miserably!

Invincible is my word for 2018. Merriam-Webster defines Invincible as too powerful to be defeated or overcome. That is what I am claiming for me and for the Christian Church. Psalms 24:18 says, ” Who is the king of glory? The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord, invincible in battle.” We have Jesus on our side, so we are invincible. He fights our battles. Romans 8:37 says, “No despite all those things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loves us.” We are invincible because, as Philippians 4:13 tells us, “I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.”

Who is willing to stand up and stand out for Jesus? Are you going to remain invisible and be like the zombies that are only interested in pleasing themselves? Or, are you going to be invincible and fight the good fight of faith! This is a war. It has been waged against us from before we were ever born. The enemy tried to kill us before we took our first breath of oxygen. The devil is after souls, so we should be after souls too. Jesus loves ALL of us. Yes, even sinners. Jesus even loved the ones that drove the nails into his hands and feet. He loved the ones that mocked Him and the ones that cried out “crucify him!”. Jesus understood that they didn’t know what they were doing. He understood that it was the evil one that had deceived them. Let us stop being the powerless, invisible church and step up to be the invincible, mighty Church that Jesus instructed us to be.

I wrote this blog just a few days before Rev. Billy Graham went to be with the Lord at the age of 99. He was an invincible man! He walked the walk and talked the talk. We can’t rely on just one or two to do what needs to be done. Now that he’s gone home, we as the Church need to step out and fulfill our calling.

What are you grateful for?

I am grateful for my family. My mom and dad raised me to be the person I am today. I am a fighter – from my mom, and a thinker – from my dad. They were good parents. They never mistreated me and I never went without what I needed. I didn’t have a perfect life, but I am a strong woman today because of the obstacles I faced. There are so many kids that are abused daily, but I feel like I was so blessed to have parents that loved me and tried the best they could for me. Things haven’t been easy for me, but nothing worth having is easy to attain. My kids are amazing and I am a happy wife. My marriage was rocky at first, but we both fought for our marriage. It wasn’t just me and it wasn’t just him, so we made it work and it’s so good now. We didn’t give up on each other. God blessed my family!

Every day this month I have tried to write a memorized scripture, or phrase of hope, on my calendar at work just to help me get through the day. It has really helped me. I will look over at it throughout the day and repeat that daily phrase in my head. Sometimes it’s hard sitting in a box all day. I just want to be doing other stuff, but this one little thing does help me. Think of something that will lift your spirit up each day instead of the chaos and mess that’s going on around you. God is blessing us on our jobs! Philippians 4:8 NIV “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

Jonah 2:9
Salvation of the Lord.

In the book of Jonah, he didn’t want the people of Nineveh saved, but he ended up obeying God and doing the one thing that he didn’t want to do. He prophesied to the people and they turned from their evil ways and were all saved. Sometimes our life is not at all like we thought it would be. God uses us in the strangest ways, but it is all for His glory. Jonah did what no other Prophet was able to do in the Bible. He was able to get all the people of Nineveh to repent. How many Preachers and Prophets had spoken to God’s people and they mocked or killed them? Even our own Messiah! Those people in Nineveh were grateful that God loved them enough of them to send His Prophet to warn them, and they took heed. Jonah truly saw the mercy of the Lord in that place. God blesses His people! Jonah 2:9 NIV “But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the LORD.’”

Obedience is greater than Sacrifice

When I spoke in front of a women’s group for the first time, someone told me afterwards that obedience is greater than sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22). I hate to speak in public and I am very uncomfortable when all eyes are on me. I did horrible, but I did it! God doesn’t really care about how good we are at something, He just cares about us doing what He has called us to do. He will work everything out. It’s not about us anyway. We can’t change hearts or minds, that is done by the power of the Holy Spirit. We just need to be the vessels of change. I believe that even though I muttered my way through that message, someone needed to hear it and was helped by it. Sometimes people just need to see that you will get up and step out even though it hurts.

I guess God asked me to do something that I know for a fact I couldn’t do without Him. Like I said in my message that day, ‘If God called me to do it, He will get me through it’. He did. I trust Him. I have history with Him and He has NEVER let me down. I look at my kids and know in my heart that God loves me. He actually let me have the opportunity to raise them up. What a privilege and an honor! He let me see a small part of what true love is. We need to also remember that God even loves the unlovable. We generally love people that love us. Jesus loved the people that murdered Him. If you have ever wondered what love is, there’s your sign! 1 John 4:10 NLT, “This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.”

My prayer has always been that God would help me to help others, even if that means speaking in front of a crowd or writing a book. I want others to know that they don’t have to feel depressed or hopeless. John 10:10 KJV,“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” Jesus didn’t come for us after we die. He came to help us now, through our life on this fallen earth. He came to give us power and strength to overcome the enemy and his plans.

Will you obey God’s calling even if He asks you to do something hard? You know that street preachers don’t really want to stand out there and be mocked and made fun of. They are answering the call of Jesus even though it’s not fun or easy. Mark 16:15 NLT, “And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.” To God be all the Glory! It’s all worth it for just one soul to be saved from hell. Jesus came for the 1. He left the 99 for the one that needed Him. Matthew 18:12 NLT,“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost?” That is beautiful! That’s my God!

Diamond in the rough

I love diamonds! What girl doesn’t, right? I love that my birthstone is a diamond. I’m not into all that ‘witchy’ stuff, but I do like the fact that a diamond is the stone of April. The only way to cut a diamond is with another diamond. They are made of the hardest material in the world. The diamond is the strongest of all stones. Even though it doesn’t look very strong, it’s beauty is deceiving. I like to think of myself like that. I might not look or feel strong, but I actually am. I might be a diamond in the rough, but I’m still a diamond!

God is cutting away at the hard, rough edges and creating something that defies logic and imagination. He is creating a masterpiece. It’s a process but the end result is still the same. I am a beautiful jewel created just as God wanted me to be. I spent my entire life thinking something was wrong with me because I’m different than everybody else. That is so stupid! We are all different. That is what’s so beautiful! We are not the same! I say embrace your uniqueness and don’t let others make you feel bad about yourself because of your imperfections. Your imperfections were actually perfectly designed by our living Creator to make you-YOU. Who’s to say something is not perfect anyway? It’s usually someone that is trying to hide all of their insecurities by pointing out and focusing on yours. 

Don’t waste your life trying to be like other people or trying to fit in with the crowd. God has set you apart and nobody can truthfully call you ugly because God has called you beautiful. You’re not the one with the problem. Ask yourself why someone would bring up something about you that could possibly hurt your feelings or make you sad. It’s because the devil in them is using them to stop you and keep you down. Don’t let the enemy win. There are always going to be haters. They really can’t stand it when it doesn’t bother you, so don’t let it. Just remember that God is with you and He doesn’t make junk.

Jesus put a ring on it!

On 8/21/17 we had the most amazing total solar eclipse that spanned the entire United States. I’ve never seen such an awesome display of God’s glorious creation. I love how it made a diamond ring just when it came out of the total covering. It kind-of reminds me of our spiritual covering and our engagement ring from our bridegroom. He’s coming for us soon.

Baily’s beads – Wikipedia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baily%27s_beads

Diamond Ring Effect
Diamond Ring Effect
As the moon “grazes” by the Sun during a solar eclipse, the rugged lunar limb topography allows beads of sunlight to shine through in some places, and not in others. … The diamond ring effect is seen when only one bead is left; a shining diamond set in a bright ring around the lunar silhouette.

 

Okay, here’s what I’m wondering. This is only my thoughts, so please don’t think I am saying that this is the way everything is going to happen. I really don’t know. Nobody does. But, since the U.S. is not going to be in existence during the end time, what is going to happen to take us out of the picture? My personal thought is that Jesus is going to get us out of here so that we can have our Marriage Supper of the Lamb with Him, and then the dominoes will fall as they may here on earth. Without Christians around to pray blessings over our country, then our country won’t be blessed anymore. That’s the only way it’s going to fall. I don’t think it will happen while true Christians are here praying because –God hears our prayers. Proverbs 15:29 (NLT) “The LORD is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayers of the righteous.”

Remember how God protected Lot from the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, just because he was the only righteous man in the city? Genesis 19:29 (NLT) “But God had listened to Abraham’s request and kept Lot safe, removing him from the disaster that engulfed the cities on the plain.” I believe that God will protect us too. Why would He leave us to be tortured under a totally ungodly ruler. Our prayers are stopping the anti-Christ from revealing himself. When we are gone, it’s on! I pray for my kids and family. I don’t want them to be here when all this devastation happens. Please Church, pray for your loved ones and don’t give up on them. I am sad when I think about how many people don’t have anyone praying for them now. The time has gotten so bad, and each generation that passes is farther and farther away from God and his covering. It won’t be long. Things can not keep going the way they are going. That’s the truth!

What will God say to you?

On the day of judgement, will God be happy with your behavior or will He be disappointed? I wonder sometimes about some “Christians” I see on Sundays after Church. Have you ever had the best time at Church and then go out afterwards and see other Church people acting like they have never even been to a Church at all? They act like they just climbed out from under a rock or something. We, of all people, should know how to act in public! Come on Christians! Or so-called Christians… If nobody outside of your Church knows you attend Church, then you are not representing Jesus the way you should be.

Jesus never cussed out anyone at Walmart or acted like a fool to his waitress over a wrong side item. He certainly never showed disrespect to his parents or to others! So, we should not be doing that either! If you are a jerk everywhere else except Church- well, even at Church – you really need to re-evaluate your salvation. Also, if you’re causing division in the Church or gossiping about other Church members, you might need to have a heart to heart with our creator and see if you are truly saved at all. In Matthew 7:23 KJV, Jesus will say to some on judgement day, “…I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity”. What a terrible day that will be! Revelation 3:16 NLT also says, “So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”

Revelation 3:16
Since you are neither hot nor cold, God will spit you out of His mouth!

Christianity is not a club or a social status. It is a life style- we are supposed to be new creations when we become saved by grace. We are to put away all the old sin and take on the yoke of Jesus. Don’t take out your frustrations on others. You could be the entire reason someone will not go to Church! They might see your pictures on Facebook, where you are in Church, and think to themselves that all Christians are the same– all are fake. We’re not! But if all non-Christians see from us is the same or worse than what they see from everyone else, they will not give Jesus a chance. 

We will all be judged. I want to stand before my Holy God with clean hands and a pure heart and hear Him say to me, “Well done my good and faithful servant!” That is my goal in this life. I don’t want to falsely represent my living God by acting like the devil while wearing my Sunday best! I fall short every day, but I try my best not to. When I do fail Him, I pretty much know it immediately and quickly repent because I do NOT want to let Him down. He has never let me down! 

Determined to self-destruct

Have you ever known people who were determined to self-destruct? People who don’t seem to learn from their mistakes? We all make mistakes, but our mistakes don’t make us failures. Whether or not we are smart and tough enough to learn from our mistakes will determine if we are fighters or failures.

If we keep repeating that same bad action or bad habit over and over again without learning a lesson from it, we are failures. If we correct our mistakes and don’t keep repeating them, then we are fighters and over-comers.

It’s pretty much that simple. Don’t keep complaining and wallowing in self pity if you keep doing the same ole thing and nothing changes. That’s insanity! You like it if you keep doing it! You must like the attention more than getting the breakthrough. Change if you need to or accept the misery you have chosen to create. You can’t have both!That is what I had to learn the hard way for myself. I couldn’t let my surroundings keep me depressed. I had to force myself to find something good to focus on. I chose to focus on God instead. If you wonder why you are having the same arguments year after year or why you are at the same place you were at 5 years ago, it’s because you haven’t made anything new or good happen in your life. Take responsibility. It’s not everybody else’s fault, it’s yours!

Essentially, you need to repent. The word of God tells us to repent, for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand. Acts 3:19 says, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” Yes, that means that we all need to confess that we have sinned and stop blaming others for our mistakes. Let God help you fix your mess. He will keep letting you try to fix it as long as you hold onto it. But, when you repent and confess that you screwed up, He will help you. The choice is yours. 

Love never fails

What is love? The Bible tells us in 1st Corinthians 4-7 exactly what love is. Notice that the Bible does NOT describe love as a feeling. It is a specific action. In order to love, you don’t necessarily feel it. We have a society with a skewed idea of what love is. I have heard people say over and over that “Love never fails”. I totally agree with that statement, but most people don’t understand the true meaning of it. Then, these same people are in and out of relationships and have no stability. Their kind of love fails them daily. God is love! God will never fail you! He promises to never leave you or forsake you. Your last boyfriend or girlfriend probably did leave and forsake you.

What do you love? Is it a relationship or drugs or alcohol? Do you put God first or just talk to Him when your life falls apart– then blame Him for it? It’s not His fault, it’s yours. I have heard many addicts say that they “love” the substance that they are addicted to. That’s not love, it’s an addiction. It’s a skewed substitute of love. People are really not understanding what love actually is. Jesus loves us so much that he died for us. He loves us unconditionally. Not because we love Him. 

Love is an action. Well then, is love sexual. No, that is a gift that God gave a husband and a wife to enjoy each other. Sex is a benefit of marriage, not dating. Love is not temporary and fleeting. It’s not a whim. It’s not about what other people do or don’t do to you or for you. It’s not even if someone loves you back or deserves your love. Who really deserves love? We are all undeserving. So, actually nobody loves cigarettes or drugs or alcohol. They just lust after them. They crave them. They are addicted to them. It’s not love. It’s an emotional feeling for them. Love is deeper than addiction and sexual immorality. Love endures through every circumstance. Love will get you through.