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Monday, November 22, 2010

Our Prayers Received....

The LORD hath heard my supplication; the LORD will receive my prayer.  Psalms 6:9
In this Psalms David is in great distress because of his enemies.  If we study the life of David we will see that he had developed a dependence on God in times of distress.    David also had great confidence that God would first, hear him, and then, that He would receive his prayers.  Often people look at prayer as just words said in private, or maybe just in your thoughts.  But David talks of tears and deep communion with God.
The word receive in this scripture is defined in the original language as something “captured, seized, fetched, to go and get, or take”.  If we live right, God will actually take our prayers in his hand, he will come from on high and go get them, to take care of them.  Often our children ask us for things (and as the holiday season comes, there is certainly more begging) and in order to remember them, we write it down.  As a parent, that is our way of making sure those requests are a taken care of.  We take those concerns into our own hands, only because it is in our power to grant their needs or wants.  We are their source of receiving.   “Mom, I want a bike”, “Dad, I need $10 by Friday for school”.  We may not be able to supply that need, at that moment, but we take it in hand.
When I am an obedient child of God, he will take my prayers in hand, write them down, and at his own time, take care of those needs. 

If I cannot pray with deep assurance that God will answer, then I need to find what may be breaking my communion with him.

Here’s a clue,
Jesus said:
If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (St. John 15:7)

Today is a beautiful day because I know God has written down my needs.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

What is Faith?

What is Faith?
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1). I don’t see it, but I believe I have it.  Sounds simple right?  Sounds illogical?  But, Faith is actually very practical and sometimes logical.   If we believe God is who He is, doesn’t it follow logically that He can do all he says He can? The fact that he sees all, understands all, and controls all should be enough.  But sometimes it is not.  I have learned to have more faith in God as I move on in life.  The many miracles God has worked for our family has me awestruck.
Think about it.  The one that formed the eyes (the very concept of seeing) “shall he not see”, and the person that came up with the concept of hearing itself, ‘shall he not hear” asks the Psalmist?  You see God created reason, and often uses reason to talk to man about faith.  People talk of blind faith, but God is not against us thinking or asking.  In fact he invites us to reason and talk with Him.   What He is not happy with, is willful ignorance of Him.   God reveals himself all around us. He will converse with us and commune with us about our problems, but we must listen to HIM.
One time, my husband and I had mission work to do at Hyde Park Hospital in Chicago.  We were on staff with the Chaplain, and had duties we were scheduled to perform that day in visiting the patients.  We also were in serious financial troubles at the time.  My husband only had enough money to make it to work, where he had a check waiting for him.   We did not have enough bus fare to get there, stay to make visitations and get home, and our phone was cut off that morning so we couldn’t call.   Here comes logical or illogical. Why would God give us this opening, and then we miss our duties (which the hospital was very tight on)?  So we prayed, and God told us to go on to the bus stop. Illogical?  Maybe.
As we got there, we noticed a larger crowd than usual.  We asked what was going on, and no one seemed to know except that the bus was sitting at the corner down the street for the last 10 minutes.  Finally, the bus started moving toward our stop.  When the driver opened the door, he stopped everyone from boarding and said these words “listen up people, the fare box is broken in case you were wondering why I was sitting there, I was tryin’ to get it to work, but it won’t work.  So here’s what I’m going to do, I ‘m going to give everyone a transfer good for a few hours….” I almost didn’t hear the rest, my husband and I just looked at each other and laughed.  As we sat on the bus I thought about how God blessed us and the other people too.  What a miracle! And God was right on time.

--Let’s Live Holy---

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

It's Those little Things

O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me--- Psalms 139:1
Have you ever seen anyone go through a stop sign because there were no policemen around to stop them?   This is how many people are with God.  There is something about us folks that walk on two feet.  We tend to do things, that even though we know they are wrong, we do them because often no one sees us or somehow we believe can get away with it.  But God put an inner eye (kind of a creepy way to say it, but there it is) in each one of us called the Conscience.  That thing that tells us that what we are doing is wrong and someone is watching.
Friend whenever you get that feeling, ask yourself, do I really just have to do this?  The answer is probably “No”.  Would I really want anyone see me do this or think this?  Again, the answer is probably “No”.    That’s the time to resist the temptation to do the wrong thing.  God is watching everything we do.  He knows what we are thinking about and will think about tomorrow, and we cannot hide from Him anyway.
So live your life better today.
Holy living is all about being honest with God anyway.  Start today.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Conviction, Part 2 (Facebook is the Devil)

I was in the hair salon one day and the ladies were talking about men and relationships.  One lady was talking about how someone put something on her status that went out to all her friends and exposed her two timing with another guy.  There was a whole lot of commotion on her Facebook page.  One lady said, it’s too much drama… Honey, Facebook is the devil!  We all laughed at that one.   My husband refuses to let me mention his name on my Facebook page. I admit, I have not used it in a while and my sister practically forced me to get one so she could communicate with me.
But my 15 year old practically lived there.  She would jump up from the table, “I need to go check my status!”  This unfortunately did not match the same level of need to do her homework. So I had to put some restrictions there.  We would be riding in the car, having a conversation and she would blurt out,  “Mom, are you using the computer when we get home? I need to check my status.”
 I would ask my 8 year old “where is your sister?”
  “She’s probably on Facebook”, he’d reply slowly and sadly shaking his head.  The poor child was addicted!
It reminded me of the Flintstones episode where Fred was addicted to gambling and kept saying “bet, b-b-bet, b-b-bet!” and his eyes would get all wild turn into hypnotizing circles.
            This summer though, she got involved with a youth group at our church.  She loved it and I was glad to see her do something other than being bent down under the glowing light of her computer.  It was too much!
            Slowly, she began to pull away from this obsession and hang out with the young people at church.  They would play games in the church’s gym, have fun eating contests, poetry nights and go places, and she loved it.  But she began to feel convicted about things that she was addicted to.  Like most teens,  she had more serious problems than Facebook, but for her, to cut this addiction totally out took a change of heart?   God was really talking to her about how she was wasting her life in general.
  One day I noticed that she hadn't said much about her status (which she would sometimes show me ).

 Guess what.  Lo and behold, while I was away on a mission one Sunday, God saved my daughter.  Hallelujah! 
 She has really changed!  The old girl is definitely gone and Jesus put a new one in her place.  She loves being saved.  Recently, I asked her what happened to her Facebook page.
“Oh mama, I shut that thing down a couple of months ago, before I got saved”, she said,  and I didn’t even know. I had not realized this particular change was part of her commitment to the Lord.  She told me she was thinking about getting saved all summer and knew she was addicted to it, so she shut it down.  My girl!   My husband said “What? She really must be saved.”
But this was a lesson to me; anything that is going to hinder me from serving God fully or will distract me from my true purpose, God will often talk to me about letting go. Whatever those addictions are. 
Salvation is all about change from the heart. 
Whatever is hindering me, is the thing God wants me to surrender to be a better person.  All habits are not sinful, but some things just get in the way.  
----Let’s live Holy…

What is Conviction? Part 1 How do you know …..?

Those that have been in evangelistic company have heard the words “he’s under conviction”.  The word conviction means a feeling of the weight of my sinful actions. That feeling you get when the police roll up behind you, when you know you’ve been going 80 in a 65 mile zone.  When you see those blue lights flash behind you and you know you are wrong and have been caught. That arrested feeling.  You know—the guilt, like everyone can see you nursing that Tom Collins in your hand or can smell the weed in your pocket, or see the porn under your mattress, and even though you have done it a thousand times before, all of a sudden, it feels wrong.  Things that you never gave a second thought, now feel real heavy.  Paul described it this way in giving his testimony in Romans 7: 
 13 Did that which is good (God's Law) then prove fatal [bringing death] to me? Certainly not! It was sin, working death in me by using this good thing [as a weapon], in order that through the commandment sin might be shown up clearly to be sin, that the extreme malignity and immeasurable sinfulness of sin might plainly appear.  (Amplified Bible)
….oh yeah, the sinfulness of sin.  That’s a whole lotta sin.  I had a man say one time, “you’re too sin conscious, too worried about sin”.  But isn’t that the problem?  We are not concerned enough?  Sin is what separates us from God.  Why did we need deliverance from sin?  The whole purpose of Christ’s sacrifice of his life was as an offering for sin, to take sin away from us so that we could have a path to God.  Listen to this conversation Jesus had with sinful religious people,
 34Jesus answered them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Whoever commits and practices sin is the slave of sin.
35Now a slave does not remain in a household permanently (forever); the son [of
 the house] does remain forever.
36So if the Son liberates you [makes you free men], then you are really and

We hear this last part (v.36) hear a lot from the King James Version as:
 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.
People use this quote all the time....but did you know that He was talking about being delivered from sin and not being a slave to sin anymore?

--Let’s live Holy….

 unquestionably free.