Monday, March 17, 2008

This morning . . .

I had to take my husband to work because his car is down.

As we were listening to the worsening economic news on the radio, I remembered something that was said yesterday in church. God's way is backwards from the way of the "world".

We see/hear all that is going on around us and we think, "What will happen? How will we get through this? What is next?"

We forget that God said:

Heb:11:1: Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Ph'p:4:19: But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Joh:14:28: Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.

What we are seeing and hearing is that the tides are turning on the world. God is in sovereign control. He know precisely what is happening, even in your zip code.

He is our hope, our provider and our rescuer. He has and will do what He said.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Desperation and Forgiveness

Do you remember your first desperate plea? Do you remember His answer? Do you remember how you felt?

Have you been complacent in your walk with Him? Have you been able to recreate that atmosphere of desperation?

Maybe you have taken your eye off the mark only to find yourself without Him. My personal experience was one of “weariness in well doing”. Not looking to God for my answers, I stopped in my weariness for a “rest”. Jesus continued on without me. I indirectly chose not to follow Him.

It is not that the Lord chose not the search for the “lost” but that He knew the end from the beginning. He waited until I was desperate enough (again) before He reinitiated His pursuit. Just as Satan knows how to respond to my reactions, how much more the Father knew when to re-engage me. However the problem isn’t Him forsaking me because His Word says He won’t but me forsaking Him. Rekindling the urgency and desperation of that initial encounter with Jesus is an absolute necessity. The steps are outlined clearly for all in the Bible; Repentance, Baptism, Forgiveness, Infilling of the Holy Ghost and Following His Word.

God created a place of initial cleansing from sin in His Word in Acts 2:38 for nonbelievers; Repent, and be baptized . . . for the remission of sins. . . Also place of continued safety is offered to all cleansed believers in 1John 1:9; If we confess . . . he is faithful . . . to forgive . . and to cleanse . . . As believers, we need to remember that our baptism washed away all sins prior to that day and that sins committed since need to be confessed.

Repentance and accepting God’s forgiveness isn’t usually the problem. Jesus said that He would forgive but we must learn also to accept that forgiveness as our own. We cannot be like the man in Luke 11:24-26; When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man . . .return into my house. . . findeth it swept an garnished . . . taketh him seven other demons more wicked than himself . . . last state of that man worse than the first. and reclaim our previous life. We must remember Romans 6:4; Therefore we are buried with him by baptism . . . as Christ was raised up . . . we should also walk in the newness of life.

Upon receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, Acts 1:9 notes that But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: Power to continue our walk in the newness of life with Jesus. Reading the Word, learning to wield His power and applying it literally to our lives will help keep our eyes on the mark. The Holy Ghost is our divine connection to Him and the power to maintain our walk.

We must remember the source of our desperation and how His forgiveness covered it. We must learn to forgive past hurts and remember Jesus’ command in Matthew 6:12 . . . forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. even if that debtor is us. This is the place we must hold in balance so that we don’t take our eyes from His mark and find ourselves without God.

Ellen Conn Taylor

Monday, March 10, 2008

Packaging yourself to be reflection of Christ

I just came back from a women's conference with my friend. We belong to a very conservative line of churches. But we had a wonderful time in the Lord on Friday and Saturday. Lots of prayer and worship to the only one who is WORTHY, JESUS!

On Friday night, the speaker spoke on the focus of your faith. If you focus on Jesus, you can become a wave walker like Peter. But if you focus on something or someone other than Jesus you will fall. You can to ANYTHING with Jesus. Just look back to you past for that answer.

The second day she continued to speak about faith but made a comment that I don't agree with. She said that women must wear what the world puts out in the "closet" (store). She said this in speaking to our young ladies.


You have the power to say NO. I will not buy that. I would not be caught dead in that. More importantly, I will not allow my children to wear that.

The Bible is not a book of suggestions. It is a book of commandments. You cannot take one thing and not another. You cannot pick and choose what you want to do and what you don't. If you want to be covered in the blood of Jesus, you must do what is required to the best of your ability and ask forgiveness of the rest.

We are commanded to be separate and holy. We cannot be separate and holy if we look like the fashion magazines and allow our children to dress that way too.

Not looking like the world doesn't mean that you must wear burlap sacks or look like the Amish. You can develop your own style. There are lots of beautiful patterns available and you can makeover thrift store finds. Looking and feeling like the light that God wants you to be takes effort and forethought.

Will you exercise your creativity today? Will you allow God to reveal to you what He wants you to look like? It is so rewarding to be complimented for following His commands.


I should clarify.

I have no problem with the Amish faith. If that is your persuasion, please forgive me.

We do not have to imitate others to please Him. We need to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. We need to adhere to what God has given us.

When we do this, His light will shine on the inside as well as the outside.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Respectable Sins

Respectable Sins - Confronting the Sins We Tolerate by Jerry Bridges

I have only read the first three chapters but feel compelled to comment here. The chapters I have read are titled 1. Ordinary Saints 2. The Disappearance of Sin and 3. The Malignancy of Sin. These have brought out points like "if you are part of the church then act like it" and "God notices ALL sin not just the big ones". What got to me were words used to describe sin written in the Puritanical period by Ralph Venning. He described sin as vile, ugly, odious, malignant, pestilent, pernicious, hideous, spiteful,poisonous, virulent, villainous, abominable and deadly.

I didn't find the words surprising but my reaction did surprise me. I knew that sin was ugly and unbecoming. I knew that sin was deadly. But as I kept on reading, I stopped in my tracks when I realized that sin is CONTAGIOUS! Virulent and pestilent smack to me of disease. Horrible, deadly, highly contagious disease.

Do we see white lies this way? God does. We must see sin for what it is: a disease. A disease that is highly contagious. Ro:14:20: For meat destroy not the work of God. All things indeed are pure; but it is evil for that man who eateth with offence.Ro:14:21: It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak. What we do affects others. We are being watched and imitated. Are they imitating what you want to be or who you really are?

It has really made me think about my behavior. My temper, impatience, anxiety, frustration . . . It puts a whole new meaning to "Wow! Your daughter is JUST like you!" Scary, isn't it?

I haven't read the next chapter completely, 4. The Remedy for Sin, but I know that the only remedy for sin is Jesus Christ. He is the ONLY antidote for the poison.

We should be showing the world the remedy for ALL sin not being a mirror for ALL sin.