Have you ever tended a garden? Tilling the soil, pulling weeds, adding fertilizer, planting seeds, and watering?Continue reading “Toiling is Good”
Why do you suppose Lot’s wife looked back after being warned by the angels of the Lord? What was it that was so important to her that she should turn for one last look?
With little notice she and her family were whisked away by the angels of the Lord. And, Lot’s wife looked back. Was she thinking about the house she had made into a home? The upcoming weddings of her two daughters? The friends she had to leave behind? The success of her husband and the status that brought her? What about their household items? How would they get along without those? She had no time to pack all she had were the clothes she wore.
Perhaps she couldn’t resist looking back simply because she was told not to, like a child when told, “Don’t touch that.” Or, perhaps, she looked back because she was sad and upset at having to leave everything behind, making those things her idol rather than God her God.
It isn’t always easy when God says, “This is the way walk in it.” When He does, how often do we pine for the past, when remaining in the past only keeps us rooted there? What if we chose to step out in faith? Stepping out in faith allows us to live in the present and step into the future with God. It is in the present and the future that we find God’s will for our life and position ourselves to receive every spiritual blessing that is showered upon us from the Father of Lights as part of our inheritance here and now.
Sadly, Lot’s wife didn’t understand that not looking back was God’s protection.
Stand in a circle?! And pray?! That is exactly what Honi the Circle Maker did. He was an ancient Israelite scholar mentioned by Josephus in the book of “Jewish Antiquities.”
Honi drew a circle and stood in it and told God that he would not move until God provided the rain that had not come that winter. Honi prayed and God brought rain.
Rulers, scholars and religious types all thought Honi had a special relationship with God. Actually, what he had was prayer. He was so closely knit to God he knew the goodness of God’s character.
Honi wasn’t satisfied with just rain. Honi’s heart ached for the people of God. He not only desired the seasonal rain, he wanted God’s rain of favor, blessing and graciousness. Honi didn’t give up, he prayed consistent and persistent, big audacious prayers, that could only be answered by God. Then he waited in expectant anticipation for God’s answer.
Audaciously bold prayers our part of our inheritance in Jesus. You will never know unless you ask and when you ask let it come from a heart that has been steeped in the truth of God’s word and promises.
Boldly go where every man, woman and child ought to go…before the throne of God, drawing circles around your prayers.
Sometimes God uses the words to a song and they become a song of deliverance!
Happy Friday and Happy St. Patrick’s day to all of you from this full blooded Italian gal!
The LORD has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad. Psalm 118:24 NIV
Earlier this morning as I was praying I was thinking about an encouragement that I see often across social media in various forms. The thought is if we are meeting with resistance or experiencing push back then surely God is getting ready to bless us. I’m still looking for where that is specifically in Scripture and if you have any verse references please leave them in the comments.
Resistance and push back are simply part of the enemy’s plan to lie, cheat, steal and destroy. Especially when we begin to choose to go deeper into an intimate relationship with God. Satan doesn’t want us to know one iota more about our identity, authority or inheritance in Christ than we currently do because he knows what that will look like for him and glory to God it isn’t pretty!
As I continued to pray this morning I heard Holy Spirit gently whisper, “You push back, you resist.” In a moment’s notice my prayers did an about face and I began to fight back in prayer like the mighty warrior that I am.
Spiritual warfare is so real that is why it is so important to be in God’s word everyday. Holy Spirit infuses you with Scripture that he imprints on your heart and in your soul and when the moment is called for He brings the right verse to mind. He gives us His words for the battle.
Precious One, as the old saying goes, “Them’s fightin’ words!”
This morning I woke up singing the song “Same Power” by Jeremy Camp. Specifically, these words.
The same power that rose Jesus from the grave
The same power that commands the dead to wake
Lives in us, lives in us
The same power that moves mountains when He speaks
The same power that can calm a raging sea
Lives in us, lives in us
He lives in us, lives in us
These words remind me of Romans 8:11. If you are a believer in Christ Jesus as your Lord and Savior then HIS Spirit lives in you! The same Spirit Who raised Jesus from the grave. If you grab a hold of nothing else today, may it be the truth that the Supernatural power of Christ lives in you and you can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens you. Not some things but all things.
Precious One, dig deep into God’s word, He’s waiting there for you.
When our son was a little guy he was quite the curious boy. I spent a lot of time telling him not to do certain things. Not because I didn’t want him to explore, his curiosity is one of the things I love about him, but because his curiosity was usually about things that could hurt him.
There was the time we were getting out of the SUV and before I could tell him, “Don’t touch that!” He stuck his sweet chubby hand in the exhaust, yep, still has a scar on his pinky from that one. Or, the time when we were at the happiest place on earth and he decided to see if he could fit his head through the slats in the metal gate as we were waiting in line for a ride. Thankfully, another dad was there to gently help my husband extract our son from that predicament!
We teach and encourage our children about the things they should and shouldn’t do, hoping they are listening and will eventually pass down to their children these nuggets of wisdom. In the same way the prophet Joel was admonishing the children of Israel to remind all future generations of what turning away from God looks like.
This reminds me of God’s promise to bless a thousand generations of those who love Him and keep his commandments (Exodus 20:6). When we choose to love and obey Him, to seek out his will for our life and live accordingly, he promises to bless a thousand generations. PROMISES. Wouldn’t you love for a thousand generations of your family to be blessed simply because you love and obey him?
Pray in faith, thanking God for showing and helping you to love Him and obey his commandments. Thanking Him for the gifts of confession, repentance and forgiveness, thanking Jesus for showing you the sin and unforgiveness in your life and thanking Holy Spirit for always helping you to confess, repent and forgive.
Precious One, you have the ability to bless the generations. Will you?
The sun was just setting and dusk was upon us. We were home alone and settling in. We were in our house but it wasn’t our house and the kids were much younger than they are today. They were playing quietly in the living room. There was a knock on the door and I whispered to the children not to answer the door.
That’s odd. Our front door was a sliding glass door; when did this happen? There was a small space just wide enough for me to see out and there was a man standing there. Why was he still standing there? He knocked on the door many minutes ago, obviously no one was going to answer. What was that he was holding in his hands? Seriously, he’s holding San Francisco Giants jerseys? He had three; one black, one orange and one white. Did he really think I would open the door because of this?
He was menacing looking with dark hair and scruffy beard and a deep snarl. I could tell immediately he was evil. He tried to open the slider, which wasn’t locked but thankfully the stick we always put in the door track was faithfully in it’s place. I had my phone and immediately called 911 but I couldn’t understand a word she said. My heart was racing.
Suddenly, I woke up and realized it had been a dream. A spiritual attack dream. As my heart began to calm down I asked God about the meaning. He very quickly spoke to my heart, “There is a space in your armor.”
I use to have these types of dreams more frequently and they would freak me out, they are so real. Now I see them as God’s love, grace and mercy. I believe he uses some dreams to forewarn us about things we ought to take care of in realtime. Today will be spent asking Him how to shore up my armor.
And, isn’t it just like Satan to deliver a package special delivery containing something that is special to us? One of my best friends says when you receive one of those packages sign it, “return to sender addressee unknown”
God is faithful even in our dreams. While the door was unlocked the safety stick was in place.
Precious One, have you prayed on your full armor today? Ephesians 6:10-17.
There we sat, the room empty, except for one other man. The light was dim and dingy. Off in the corner the television was on and bleating louder than it ought to have been. She sat next to me doubled over in pain with tears streaming down her face wondering what was taking so long. It was 3:30 in the morning. The man brought my attention to the rain that had started again and the howling of the wind.
I sat feeling helpless trying to control the panic beginning to creep in. I closed my eyes and began to pray. I simply said, “Jesus we need you.” The door opened and we were called back. The man came right up next to me and followed us. Just as I was beginning to feel unsettled about this, he said, “I want you to know I was praying for your daughter.” With a relieved smile, I answered, “Thank you.” He said, “As a Pastor that is my job.” I thanked him again and told him there is something special about the prayers of a Pastor.
As we sat in the exam room engulfed by the privacy curtain, listening to the activity of a busy ER, I marveled at HIM. His lavish love poured over us creating a sweet perfume for our souls. Before I ever uttered a word in prayer, God had already answered and placed that Pastor right near us.
If that isn’t love, what is?
Precious One, God is ever close, his love knows no bounds and he is always listening to the sweet tinkling of your voice.
PS she is fine and God is good….ALL the time.
What are some of the things you feel you are lacking? Maybe it is confidence, or compassion, perhaps it is knowledge or maybe it is basic needs. If you are a believer in Christ, you lack NOTHING. God’s word is filled with so many promises and you get to choose if you will spend time with him daily so He can reveal His promises to you.
Precious One, stay connected to The Vine.