As a child of the Most High God you can expectincrease in your family and ministry. Expect reconciliation and salvation to come in the most unlikely places. Expect increase in your peace and joy. Expect restoration, fresh revelations, renewal and revival. Yes, Jesus meets you where you are but He doesn’t leave you there. Know that it is His desire to increase you, bless you and take you to higher heights and deeper depths in Him. Amen.
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in Me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.” –John 14:12
“Our God is the God of salvation” -Psalm 68:20 (NKJV)
“Our God is a God who saves” -Psalm 68:20 (NIV)
Through Jesus we come to know the Father’s Love for us. The Father’s desire is to see that none perish (2 Peter 3:9) Through Rahab’s story we learn that The Promise is not just for us but for our loved ones as well.
When the two Israelite spies came to the house of Rahab the prostitute, she offered to hide them (See Joshua chapters 2 and 6). She heard about how the Lord of Israel had dried up the Red Sea and delivered them from the Egyptians and the two Amorite Kings, Sihon and Og. She testified to the spies that, “The Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.” -Joshua 2:11
Rahab heard God’s word, (that’s faith: faith comes by hearing) which prompted her to make intercessory for her family (that’s Ministry). By hiding the spies she was defying her own people and government thus risking her own life to save her family. Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” -John 15:13
Let’s look at Rahab’s Intercessory:
“Please swear to me by the Lord that you will show kindness to my family, because I have shown kindness to you. Give me a sure sign that you will spare the lives of my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them —and that you will save us from death.” –Joshua 2:12-13
When the walls of Jericho fell and the armies of Israel stormed the city; Rahab, her father and mother, her brothers and sisters and all who belonged to her were saved. Her faith in God and her intercession made her and her loved ones heirs to the promise.
“He who did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for us all—how will He not also, along with Him, graciously give us all things?” -Romans 8:32
God’s desire is to Save. As Believers in Christ you are called to be Ministers and ministry begins first at home. May this word encourage you to continue your intercession for your friends and loved ones…In Jesus name. Amen
The Salvation Promise
“The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off- for all whom the Lord our God will call.” -Acts 2:39
Do not conform to the patterns of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. –Romans 12:2
Many of us have been programmed to think and see the worst in people, circumstances and ourselves. Professional Fault-Finders; often wired from childhood to think and prepare for the worst. We are also best known as our own personal worst critic. Even in the midst of praise for your attributes and accomplishments you can’t help but to find something wrong.
Then along came Jesus preaching, “Repent!” Change the way you think. What a bold request; a request that goes against every fiber of your natural being. To abandon the way you’re wired and see yourself not as a “Hot Mess” but through Heaven’s lens…Faultless, Forgiven, Perfected and Loved. That’s challenging for some of us.
I suppose Heaven’s view would look like this:
I am not past, my addictions or pain.
I am a New Creation, the old me is dead and gone, the new me is here to stay.
I am not my sins.
I am Forgiven. My sins, (past, present and future) are Nailed To The Cross.
Forgiven and Forgotten.
There is no more condemnation for me. Sin has No Dominion over me anymore.
I am not weak, a victim or a failure.
I am More Than A Conqueror. I can do All Things Through Christ who strengthens me.
I am a Co-heir with Christ, created to do good works. I am Destined to Reign and Succeed.
Enough about who I was, this is who I am: Chosen By God, Justified By Faith, Glorified in Christ and at Peace with God. No longer conformed to the patterns of this world but conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. I am the Righteousness of God in Christ. No longer a Fault Finder but a Faith Seeker. I am light and salt to this Earth. I am the Apple of God’s Eyes, the one whom the Father So Loved. I’m wired in Christ now and as Christ is, So Am I. My Friend that is how Heaven sees you.
I was waiting patiently in the waiting room. It was an hour past my appointment time and I was not happy. I came to the early morning appointment without having coffee or bringing a book, tablet or phone. I thought I’d be in and out of there in thirty minutes top. I was so wrong. So I said, “Okay LORD, it is You who plans my day. If you’re going to leave me without coffee or iPad; who do you want me to minister too?” Moments later, I found myself spiritually sparring with another believer. That exchange lead to a mother asking me to pray for her daughter. We prayed and you can imagine my delight when I heard a few “Amens” from those listening.
Then there was, The One. It had been three hours past my appointment time. I could have rescheduled but I felt compelled to stay. There were only two of us left in the waiting area. This college student had heard and saw my interactions so he wasn’t surprised when I asked him if he believed in Jesus.
“Not anymore”, he said, “ I was ex-communicated out of my church because I asked too many questions.” He replied quietly.
“You weren’t in God’s church, Friend.” I replied. “You see whom the Father gives to the Son cannot be snatched out of His hands. You can’t be ex-communicated out of His presence. Once you become His child, He vows to never leave or forsake you. As for asking questions, our Father says, ‘Ask, and it will be given to you; seek and you find; knock, and it will be opened to you.’ Our God doesn’t run away from questions. He loves when you have questions about Him that means you want to get to know Him. The Father desires to unveil His heart to us.”
What the young man said next almost blew me out of my seat. “Am I supposed to believe that God who created this vast universe and filled this one planet with billions of people could care about someone as insignificant as me.”
“Yes!!!!” I yelled so loud that I even startled myself. I started to say, “You’re the One…” Then the door to the examination rooms opened. They called my name.
I didn’t know what to do; I wanted to finish this conversation but what was on my heart to say I felt it needed to be said in private. Even though I said to the attendant, that I’d be right there, she chose to stand there and wait for me. Sadly the flesh kicked in, I started to feel the burden from the long wait. I looked back at the young man and smiled awkwardly at him. He smiled back, waved goodbye and I left.
What I wanted to say is this:
You are The One the scriptures spoke about. The One that God So Loved and gave Heaven’s Best, His Beloved Son for. God cares for you and loves you with an unfailing and unwavering love. According to the Creator of this vast universe and planet filled with billions, YOU are The One worth fighting for and dying for and that’s exactly what He did For You on The Cross. You’re not insignificant to Him; you are the Apple of God’s Eye.
I have to be honest I felt like I missed a moment; like I failed God. Then the Father reminded me that it was Him who orchestrated this moment. It was Him who prompted the prayer I prayed later on for this young man. Everything went according to God’s plan. The Father assured me that I planted the seed and watered it. Now it’s His job to make it grow. With loving-kindness God will draw him.
Remember its God who orders our steps. What may seem like a bad day may very well be God preparing “A Moment” for you to share the love of Jesus with That One.
“A woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind Him and touched the edge of His cloak. She said to herself, “If I only touch His cloak, I will be healed.” Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” He said, “your faith has healed you.” Matthew 9:20-22
Jesus was moved by her thoughts of Him. Her thoughts drew power from Him. Another translation testifies that virtue and had gone out from Him. Her faith in Him caught Jesus’ attention. Jesus sought out the one who touched Him and when He looked at her He called her “Daughter”. Faith brought this Social Outcast into Sonship. It took her from Sickness to Sonship in mere seconds. Jesus also points out that it was her faith in Him, not His robe that made her well. Scripture says that those who are of faith are sons of Abraham. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. Her faith made her a beneficiary of God’s Promise.
Who do you say Jesus is? What are your thoughts about Him? This woman once thought that her healing was in the hands of physicians and for 12 years she bore the consequences of her thoughts, she didn’t get better she got worse. Then one day she heard about JESUS and it changed the way she thought.
Her thoughts drove her to go to places she wouldn’t have dared to go, it took her where the world said she didn’t belong. She dared to seek out and reach for what she heard and believed and that faith transformed her life. In a crowd of many only one touched Jesus. Are you that one? Is your faith driving you to pursue the plans God has for you. To be a Light in the World for Him. In His eyes …YOU ARE.
The Father said to me the other day, “The validation that you seek can not be found in a man, woman or child. Your parents can’t give it you; your children can’t fill that need. Your worth can’t be found in the things you do, the success you’ve had or the places you’ve been. These things can’t validate you. The validation you seek can only be found in Me, only I can do that for you.” Said the LORD.
We tend to look outside of ourselves for our self-worth but our worth could never be found in anything this world has to offer. Our worth dwells on the inside, where God’s Spirit dwells. For the Kingdom of God is with you and in you. What you seek is in your heart, the place where Jesus chose to make His home. “He anointed us, set His seal of ownership on us, and put His Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.” 2 Corinthians 1:21-22.
Our worth is wrapped up like the perfect gift it is in the body of Jesus Christ. It’s seated in Heavenly places, seated at the right hand of the Father. Simply put you’re Christ workmanship created in Him to do good works Eph. 2:10 better yet as Christ is, so are you on this Earth. His love makes you complete. 1John 4:17
I’ve come to realize that I can’t measure myself by the world’s ever-changing standards nor can I compare my achievements or lack there of with another. All I have, all I am and all I am to become can be found in no other but Jesus. I am the one He laid down His life for; conquered death and the grave for. My name is engraved in the palms of His hands Isaiah 49:16. I am the object of His mercy and love. That is my net worth!
I am the object of His mercy and love. That is my net worth!
You may be struggling today with the feeling of not being loved, accepted and appreciated by your friends, colleagues and loved ones. Honestly you may never receive that validation that you desire from them. Nevertheless, you don’t have to live life feeling rejected. According to your Vindicator and Redeemer. There is a great light in you, a love unfailing and unwavering dwelling on the inside of you. There is resurrection power inside of you. Your worth can’t be measured by degrees and scales; your worth can only be measured through the eyes and heart of an Infinite God. For God so loved the world <insert your name> that He gave His only Begotten Son. This is what an infinite God thinks about you, everything else that you heard is a lie.
You are accepted into the Beloved Eph 1:6. Forget the haters/naysayers your Heavenly Father speaks a better word that overrides every negative word or act done to you. You’re accepted in Christ. God’s Beloved pray to the Father and let Him make known to you His heart and thoughts towards you.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”-Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV
I was walking down a road called self-destruction, when I encountered a Man who was and is like no other. His name was Jesus Christ. He is a gentleman in every sense of the word. He knew everything there was to know about me; He knew me better than I knew myself. He knew the good; the bad and the ugly yet He never condemned me or made me feel ashamed of the bad choices I made. He Loved me…anyway.
The more time I spent with Him, the more I saw how deep and wide His love was for me. A Love unfailing, unwavering and everlasting. I’ve never felt this loved before. There was so much He wanted to give me, so much He had planned for me. Salvation, healing, peace, joy through His righteousness. He offered me freedom from my past and my pain. Forgiveness and the courage to forgive.
This Jesus took my heavy luggage, that contained all of my burdens and hurts and He handed me His. Surprisingly it was so light and easy. This was just a fraction of the gifts He offered me. There was so much more, more than my heart and mind can contain. I had nothing to offer Him except for a believing heart and a mouth that confesses and shares with others that He is who He says He is! Savior and Lover of our souls. This was more than enough for Him.
A Man named Jesus. A Man without spot or wrinkle who shed His righteous blood for the redemption of all of our sins, sickness and diseases. The only One who was willing and worthy to fulfill the will of the Almighty God. A Man like no other. He met me in my fallen state; touched me and transformed me into His image from glory to glory…to glory. Would you like to meet this Man named Jesus?
A Salvation Prayer
Then pray with me. Father God in Heaven, thank you for loving me so much that you willingly gave up your Beloved Son Jesus Christ to die for my sins. He took all of my sins, death and punishment into His own body and nailed it all to the cross. Better yet, He rose conquering death and the grave with salvation and complete healing in His wings. He did this so that I may become a son/daughter of the Almighty God, the righteousness of God in Christ. Today I receive Your Son Jesus Christ as my Savior and Lord and I receive You as my Father and my God. Come into my heart; fill me with your Holy Spirit. I say goodbye to the old me and embrace the new creation that I am in Jesus. In Jesus name. Amen.
“For I know the plans I have for you, “ declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” –Jeremiah 29:11
Many of us know this promise well. It’s our personal hope, our life-preserver. The rock we stand on when life throws its worst at us. Every time you hear this promise your confidence quickens because, this is your promise. God is personally talking to you. If you’re anything like me you’ve studied this verse inside and out. You’ve read other translations. You’ve written it on post-its and stuck it on your wall, computer, fridge, mirror…everywhere! Have you noticed that God says the word “plans” three times? For those of you who’ve studied the Hebrew language the number three is said to represent “completeness”.
This promise has often been the topic of many intimate conversations between the Father and I. What are your plans for me? Am I on the right path? This hope and future you speak of Father God, is it in this life or the eternal one?
The other day I read the verse again and was about to close the book when I heard Him say, “Keep reading, that’s only part of the promise.” So I read verse 12-14 and I had what I could only explain as a jaw-dropping moment. We all know Jeremiah 29:11 but how many of us know/remembers the second half of that promise.
Allow me to share:
“Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord.”
When I read this I heard Him say:
I have a plan for you, plans that will touch and enrich every area of your life. Whenever you call on Me and pray to Me, says the LORD, know that I’m listening to you. You have my ear and my full attention. One call from you and I’m right there.
How beautiful is that!
It would be a big deal to some if you were to have a direct line to the Governor, the President, a powerful King or Queen of a wealthy nation but you, child of God, you have the ear of the Creator of ALL. God the Father listens to you! He shows up just for you! That’s our hope and future.
The one who listens says; I don’t make a promise that I can’t keep. I will never leave you or forsake you; I will be with you wherever you go. I am with you in the valley, on the mountaintop and everywhere in between. I fight for you. You are my heir and every promise to you is a ‘yes’. My love for you is unwavering, unfailing and it never gives up.
Your future and hope is in Him that is able. The one who loved you so much that He died on the cross just for you. Got questions about your future, the things you wrestle with at night? Just ask; He’ll give you the answers you seek. Whether you’re a Gideon who needs a little more convincing or a Paul who’s ready to go as soon as the scales have been lifted from your eyes. God will meet you right where you are.
He who began the good work He started in you, He will see it to completion. That’s the plans, hope and future we have to look forward to.
The world is all about labeling you. In some instances you’re just a number or a category. Make a medical appointment and the first thing they ask you for is your date of birth. If you bank by phone they don’t ask for your name they ask you for the last four digits of your social security number. After a few minutes they say, “I found you. What can I do for you today?”
How about those forms where you’re forced to categorize yourself by age, sex, income and race. Then there’s that blank box that says “Other”, that barely gives you enough space to describe yourself. I’m often tempted to write, Wonder Woman. My kids would get a kick out of that. As a believer though, I’ve always wanted to write “Child of God.” I may do that next time. 🙂
The sad truth is we’re guilty of labeling ourselves. I’ve had complete strangers and acquaintances compliment me and even point out my strengths but whenever I look at myself all I could see are my flaws. My husband calls me beautiful and I launch into an argument to try to convince him otherwise. He often accuses me of not being able to take a compliment. Don’t tell him I said this, but he’s right.
One day, while I was verbally beating myself up, I heard the Holy Spirit say, “That’s not who you are.” I stopped and thought, What am I doing? This isn’t how the Father sees me.
If we could see ourselves through Heaven’s lens, imagine what we would see.
I think at some point we’ve all experienced the loss of a loved one. Every time I learn of the passing of someone I know, I replay my conversations with him or her. When it’s someone I loved deeply, I ask myself, when was the last time I said I love you? Did we leave things on a good note? Did they know God, if not did I share Christ with them?
A Greater tragedy has been on my heart lately… suicide. There was a suicide story that made national news that really grabbed me. A teenage girl hung herself. I did an Internet search for her and what I saw broke my heart. There were touching tribute pages to her but what really startled me was the hours of video footage she posted of her crying out for help. How is it that our kids are more willing to bare their souls on the Internet yet unwilling to trust the contents of their heart with the adults in their lives?
A greater burden for me as a believer is this, where were the believers in her life? Was there not one friend, teacher, counselor, coach, neighbor, youth leader, was there not one in her life that knew the Lord. To let her know that she is loved and valued by A Savior whose love is unfailing, unwavering and endures. Was there not one praying for her?
No child or adult should have to end their life or suppress their pain through drugs, sex and alcohol in search of peace. Especially when peace can be found in abundant supply through Christ our Savior. He suffered and died so that we don’t have to. The bible says, “a body I require.” I know God was calling forth Christ to be the sacrificial lamb when He said this but I believe this call is also for the sons and daughters of God.
I think God is calling His children out of our comfort zones and into ministry and Christ has shown us through His own earthly ministry that ministry is not limited to a church building. It can happen anywhere. Jesus ministered by the lakeside, near a well, at the dinner table, on a mountain climb, wherever He went, He brought life and truth. This whole world is a pulpit and there are billions of people crying out for a Savior. If one man’s prayer can cause a national drought, (See Elijah’s story) imagine what one seed of hope planted for Christ can do when you decide to be that One. Your prayer can save a life.
We have access to the Father of Hope. Prayer, Testimonies, Sharing Christ written or verbal. These are our weapons. These are the tools we’ve been equipped with to save a life for Christ. Now is not the time to sit and wait for Christ return, now is the time to make sure when He does return we’ve got a whole lot of invites ready to come with us. Are you willing to be that One?