Category Archives: April 2012

Spirit of Rejection, Leave Me Be

To be honest, I don’t even know how to begin this article because there is so much information I want to share but I am having such a difficult time. Thus far, this is the most emotional article I have written. As I sit here with tears in my eyes I will write everything the Lord gives me to write. Although this seems to be more difficult with each word, I must fight to be free from the spirit of rejection. I encourage everyone to look at the videos in this post.

Romans 5:8 (KJV): But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

The interesting thing about rejection is that this is the one thing that everyone has experienced, even if they have “never” been rejected on Earth. God gave me the mind to understand that everyone experiences rejection by God before our rebirth. Psalm 51:5 (KJV): ” 5Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.” Before we receive salvation our father is Satan, simply because he is who we naturally yield our members to. John 8:44 (KJV): “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” I believe that we all are born with what I call a “flicker of light,” which makes us want to know God and be received by Him. Keep in mind that we are all made in the Father’s image and though that image is damaged by the world of sin, He gives each of us the opportunity to be rekindled. This makes sense considering that we all know that not only does the Word clearly emphasize that love is the greatest of them all (1 Corinthians 13:13), but even the world openly pursues love and acceptance. What truly runs everything? love.

Psalm 5:4-6 (KJV): 4For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee.5The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity.6Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man.”

From the moment we enter this world we begin our search for love and acceptance. Mind you we already have a deep mission to be accepted by the Heavenly Father but naive and clueless, we seek natural avenues to fulfill spiritual voids. This search creates opportunity for the love of lust, the love of money, the love of flesh. People, myself included, can, have, and will spend many years and a lot of money trying to find what will make their life complete. You know the quote, “Money cannot buy happiness?” It is true because while many think finances will fill our missing void, they soon find that one cannot please lust. You cannot satisfy Satan. Not only does seeking things of the flesh make a foolish individual hopeful that they will become complete, but they begin to believe that their sin loves them back. This is where addictions and idolatry begins because as long as Satan can keep you in bondage, his sin will always be there waiting for you. If an individual you expect to always be there for you isn’t, marijuana, fornication, masturbation,porn, alcohol etc. always seems to enter the front of your mind saying, “Hey, I am here for you. I know they let you down but I’ll always accept you. I know your flesh loves me and I really hate you but I’ll make you believe that I love you.” Our minds become easily tricked because whether we admit it or not, we desperately want to be loved, accepted, and cherished. The whole adventure of life is finding our missing Piece. Once some of us become aware of God we can either go with Him or we can go against Him, rejecting Him from our own hurt. Atheists believe in God and they know He exists but from whatever hurt and turmoil that they’ve experienced, they reject His truth. Even Satan knows God for who He is, why wouldn’t a human? A human doesn’t know anything that God or Satan, angels or demons don’t know. They all knew the Truth before we existed. God is a gentle God and won’t force Himself on anyone but when He takes time to draw you nigh (John 6:44) and you accept, it is then that you can realize that He is who you’ve been missing the entire time. The best part of the journey is that while you may look for a man or woman to love you like you love them, a pet who loves you unquestionably, or merchandise that will keep you in good spirit, God will show you that along this journey He is protecting you, He is loving you, and He has been waiting for you, unconditionally.

Proverbs 8:17 (KJV):17 I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.”

John 3:16 (KJV): 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Rejection is a tough one, as many of us know. I remember for many years knowing that I had an issue but never knowing what the issue was, the root of the issue. I only knew that I was becoming crazier by the minute looking for it. There had been nothing in this world that I wanted and didn’t have yet my heart ached as if someone was slowly pulling it out of my chest. The week before I had gotten saved I sat and thought about how I had become exhausted by every avenue you could thing of. I had tried just about everything you could think of to fill my void. I had collected so many sins, so many bad habits, so many enemies, so many friends who were secretly enemies, so much confusion, so much demonic oppression.. just because I was looking for love in all of the wrong places. You know that love is powerful when even the world goes crazy looking for it. The only twist is that the “world” collectively knows more than what we know individually and for that very reason, it has roller coasters that keep us from His correct path. False religions, extreme behaviors, and materialism keep us bound and chasing a lie. It is like taking a stick with meat and tying it to the back of a dog, just so that it dangles enough for the dog to see it. The dog will run and run and run for that piece of meat only to find that they’ve hit a tree and fallen in a ditch and that they STILL will not receive that meat, even though they have become more desperate by the minute.

Romans 8:37-39 (KJV): 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

As I write this to everyone reading this, I first write it to myself. To be set free from the spirit of rejection we must…we must come to God. The only one who can fulfill our deepest desires is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. It may not be easy and it may not happen overnight but we have to start somewhere. You will go absolutely crazy if you look to anyone other than God to do a job that only He is equipped to do. It is our human nature to look to friends, family, our spouses to save us from our pain but we will forever become upset and crippled to find out that we are looking for something unconditional in conditional beings. You can begin doing the world, trying to survive off of instant happiness only to find out that the world is doing you and that the joy of life is being sucked out of you by spiritual leeches. Rejection hurts, it is true but if it weren’t in us, we would never come to know God. While rejection is the one thing that every individual can attest to, it is also the very thing that will always make God relevant in our lives. If you think we look to man now…if we could find unconditional love and acceptance in this world, we would kiss God goodbye and become married to the god of this world almost immediately. God is so caring that He gave each of us a drive to know Him and when the Holy Spirit draws us nigh, He awakens that drive. Again, we either reject Him or accept Him. God gives us an ultimate relief because while we have no answer, He is the answer. He puts us out of our misery, regardless of how long we endured. This is also why we cannot effectively recognize love and give it without knowing Him. Our deepest dwellings begin to come alive and spill over when we meet our Source. When I had gotten saved I said to God, “God, love might be real, I am not sure but I am certain that it isn’t for me. If it is real, then why can’t I identify it? Why does everyone have it but me? I have everything and everyone I want but the void remains. I have looked everywhere for this love and though I thought my parents could offer it, even they fall short. Lord, I thought no one loved me more than myself and even my selfish love doesn’t suffice. No one loves self more than self. Love cannot be real so I give up.” He responded, “That’s because you looked everywhere but to Me.”

1 John 4:9-12 (KJV): “9 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. 10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.12 No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.”

Father, we come to You today simply thanking You for who You are. We do not deserve all that You have bestowed upon us. Justice says that we should die but Your mercy and grace gives us Life. Some of us know about our struggle with the spirit of rejection and some of don’t. Right now we bind all spirits of rejection, all spirits of self-rejection, and all spirits of the fear of rejection. Father, we ask that You continue to guide us to the Source of our yearning. Please keep us from pursing avenues that aren’t You. You are the Key to everything about us. Many of us are broken and crippled but we ask for Your love that surpasses all understanding. We believe that You fix hearts and we ask that You fix ours. When we put our trust and hope in man and merchandise, Holy Spirit please convict us and change our ways. Whether individuals admit their yearning to know You or not, we ask that You reveal how mighty You are. Some may feel embarrassed to admit that the deepest part of their being wants love and acceptance. Please wake Your people up and show them that while seeking for love can make one do the craziest things,love can also cause someone to do the most virtuous things. You are love and we accept You as our everything and you..spirit of rejection…leave us be. Amen.

Proverbs 3:3 (KJV): Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart.


But I am Tired!

Matthew 11:28-29 (KJV): “28Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”

I used to think that I had the most baggage in the world. I was absolutely convinced that I had indulged in more sin than anyone I knew and anyone that I would ever meet. I just thank the good Lord that I was wrong but even if that was the case, His love and power goes deeper than any sin I had ever touched. I had baggage when I came to the Lord, no doubt about that!

Psalm 55:22 (KJV): “Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.”

I was encouraged to write this article after many weeks of stress of confusion. I am a worrier. I am not proud of it but it is true and I am working on it. I have noticed that the exact things I stress about after knowing the Lord are the same things I stressed about before knowing the Lord. Something isn’t right. Didn’t Christ die so that we could have abundant life? The issue isn’t Christ taking our burdens but more so us giving Him our burdens and more importantly, us giving our burdens to the Lord and NOT taking them back. Jeremiah 6:16 (KJV):16Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.”

I think we all know that baggage can come from every avenue and that different things can be considered baggage depending on the perspective. Our baggage can be sin. Our baggage can be current circumstances. Our baggage can be carried down 4 generations before us leaving the bags torn and covered with holes but still managing to hold curses and the anxieties that go along with them. Galatians 6:2(KJV):2Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Regardless of the baggage, it is time to give them to God and to leave them there! We have baggage because we are human and if we didn’t get a chance to experience the burden of baggage then we would never get a chance to experience the sovereignty of God as He effortlessly takes our baggage and throws them in the sea of forgetfulness. Psalm 68:19 (KJV): 19Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.”

Sometimes when I think of the sins I struggle with I become plain ole tired. When I am encouraged to fight I only think about how tired I am of fighting. Like God, “Why can’t this be gone already? I am tired of this baggage.” The key is that if I am still struggling then that means my flesh still has it. God has nothing to do with anything that is unclean or unrighteous. If something unlike Him is part of our lives, it is because we have a tight grip on it. When God deals with something, He deals with it and He crushes it. When we hold on to baggage it is essentially trying to step on the toes of God and telling Him that we have the power and authority to deal with burdens–even more capable than Him. Isaiah 41:13 (KJV): 13For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.” We may not intentionally say this to God but when we refuse to give our burdens to Him or rest them at His feet and go to pick them up again, we are saying that we would rather have them. I am guilty of each of these things but it wasn’t intentional. In the world I was so used to operating with my flesh that I was conditioned to believe that I was in charge, making sure everything was being handled. I had no power then to deal with such heaviness and I don’t now but since I now know Christ, I am encouraged to do things the proper way. I now have the mind to pray to God giving Him my burdens regardless of what they are. I am in no position to handle (become weighed down) by them.1 John 5:3 (KJV): “3For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.” I want to honor our Father by showing Him that I trust and have faith in the fact that He will work things out with my best interest in mind.

1 Peter 5:7 (KJV):7Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”

Lord, please help me to cast all of my burdens unto You. I am tired of the place where I am in You and it is only because I am holding on to my burdens. I need to give these sins to You and not try to end them on my own. I need to give You my broken heart and allow you to mend every muscle, vein, and capillary connected. When I worry, stress, and panic because of anxiety I pray that You remind me of who You are rather than what my burdens are. I am sorry for trying to do Your job. I give You my secret sins. I give You my greatest fears. I give You the pain that runs too deep for me to even discuss. I give You all of my burdens Father. Please help me, I beg of You. Amen.

John 14:27 (KJV):27Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

Jealousy, Me?

Exodus 20:17 (KJV): “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.”

Jealousy has always been a difficult topic for me. I couldn’t seem to understand why anyone could or would want to be jealous. I didn’t think materialistic things were ever a good enough reason. Ecclesiastes 4:4 (KJV): “Again, I considered all travail, and every right work, that for this a man is envied of his neighbour. This is also vanity and vexation of spirit.” I wasn’t even too sure about characteristics being a reason either because I always thought everyone was special in their own way. As I would read verses and commandments about not being jealous or crippled with covetousness I would scan my mind thinking, “Whew, I am glad that I am not controlled by jealousy. Jealousy has to be a terrible thing. I don’t want anything like that eating me up.”

Galatians 5:19-21 (KJV): “19Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,20Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,21Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

My rejoicing of not experiencing jealousy was short-lived because He revealed to me that I was. I remember it like yesterday. I sat on my bed in awe at the thought that I indeed was plagued by jealousy. But what made me jealous? Something that I thought shouldn’t even be qualified on the “to be jealous of” list. I was jealous of love. Well not love specifically, but of those who not only were offered love but simply of those who could receive it. Fighting with a spirit of rejection and losing the battle more times than I can count, I found myself jealous and crippled by the thought of someone having something that I thought was vital and deserving to every human walking on this Earth. Ouch. Not only was I jealous but I was jealous of something that didn’t seem to be optional, but something that truly made the world go ’round. I can go “buy” anything but I can’t buy love. What was I to do? Well since I was saved I knew to take that to the Lord but then what? I found myself upset when jealousy got hold of me and began to pick at the sores sealing wounds on my heart. Ouch again. My prayer was that I would no longer be jealous, simply because I am loved by Him unconditionally, before anyone and anything else. Has my revelation ended the jealousy? Not yet but it is a growing process. My heart was so calloused that I didn’t even realize that I was jealous. Then I became aware of my issue and felt pitiful for being jealous of something as simple as love. Then I found myself angry at myself and angry that I could not shake jealousy. I was right, jealousy is a terrible thing. Then I found myself during my moments of jealousy sending verbally silent prayers up to God asking Him to fulfill whatever made me jealous. I am not lying, I have experienced moments where jealousy was given the boot as our Father’s love rushed into my mind, body, and spirit. Yep, He is really that awesome.

James 3:14 (KJV): “But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.”

Jealousy is messy and God knows that, which is why we are specifically instructed to not be consumed by envy.1 Corinthians 3:3 (KJV): “For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?”  Jealousy doesn’t help individuals get far. If anything, it keeps an individual bound by selfishness and greed. James 3:16 (KJV): “For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.” Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10) so there is no question about the wickedness of jealousy. James 3:14-15 (KJV):14But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.15This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.” God takes covetousness and envy so seriously that He even filters such bugs in our prayer life, purging selfish motives in our supplications. James 4:2-3 (KJV): 2Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.3Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.” The consequences of jealousy are death (like any other sin), as it cuts so deep that it can cut through flesh. Proverbs 14:30 (KJV): “A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.” I think at one point I even thought, “Can jealousy really bring forth death? I mean everyone gets jealous about something and at some point, right?  “Song of Solomon 8:6 (KJV): “Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.” While we all may have that one thing that makes us jealous, God outlines the importance of us not being devoured by jealousy as an umbrella covering many sins. If someone is willing to lie they are willing to steal and if someone is willing to steal then best believe that they are willing to kill. It begins with envy but it doesn’t stop there.

Proverbs 27:4 (KJV): “Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?”
                            The Lost Son
Luke 15: 25-30 (KJV):25Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing.26And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant.27And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound.28And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him.29And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends:30But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf.”

The first time I read this part of the story about the Prodigal Son the only thing I could think of was, “This guy’s brother was lost then decided to come home and live life differently and the only thing he could focus on was that he wanted a party as well? How could he allow jealousy to steal joy for his bother’s breakthrough?” I guess it is similar to my experience with jealousy. How could I be jealous watching someone else receive love and affection, even if it was the very thing I wanted more than anything in this world? Why couldn’t I just be happy that someone else didn’t feel as empty as me? I can only guess that the answer is flesh but the better answer is when I asked Him to be my Comforter. The only one qualified to be jealous is God. Deuteronomy 4:24 (KJV):“For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.” The jealousy of God should even reinforce our reverence for Him, helping us avoid His wrath. Zechariah 8:2 (KJV): “Thus saith the LORD of hosts; I was jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I was jealous for her with great fury.”

But wait. There is something else interesting that the Lord revealed to me. There is something beneficial to jealousy. If presented and enforced by God, it can produce His fruit. God has used jealousy to bring sinners out of their wickedness as they began to want the light living inside of His redeemed. The first example of this is when God offers salvation to the Gentiles so that Israel may turn away from their wicked ways. Deuteronomy 32:21 (KJV): “They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not God; they have provoked me to anger with their vanities: and I will move them to jealousy with those which are not a people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.” I often associate jealousy with negativity (as we usually should) but I was amazed to know that jealousy could produce positivity. Romans 10:19 (KJV): “But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you.” We ought to pray for Israel and that they come back to their first Love and reject all false doctrine. I am truly grateful that I have been offered salvation and that I am now in position to pray for Israel’s submission to the Father. John 1:11-12 (KJV): 11He came unto his own, and his own received him not.12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” In addition to Israel, anyone who isn’t a believer should be jealous of those who have the Holy Spirit dwelling within. It is troubling to think that Christians can have the Way, the Truth, and the Life without catching the attention of someone living in darkness. As God’s chosen people we have the Key, the answer, the perfect gift. We should question if sinners cannot see the fruit of God in the lives of Christians, let alone be jealous of it. This should be a reminder that we as Christians should allow Godly jealousy to prick the hearts of sinners, potentially leading them not to us but to Him who dwells within. Let your light shine from the tops of hills, not hiding the flicker under a bushel. 

Romans 11:11 (KJV): ” I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. 

Excuse My Manners

For the times when we have selective perspectives, favoring the perspective that dwells on the negative.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 (KJV):“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

Psalms 75:1 (KJV): “Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, unto thee do we give thanks: for that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare.”

This week has been a challenging one. I mean challenging in every way. From the numerous phone calls I have had to make to my home college to the many nights I spent trying to reach the ear of God—it has been challenging. Like in the video above, I found myself wondering what I had to be thankful for. As I was walking home a few days ago I began to have a battle in my mind. The anger and frustrations in my heart was trying to push out the Scripture vibrating through my headphones. My heart was a ball of fury but I knew the truth of His Spirit knocking on the door of my soul was much more important than my angry rant. I reluctantly gave in, rolling my eyes as I let go of how upset I was and tried to provide open access for the Holy Spirit. The interesting thing was that the battle did not stop there. For about two minutes my flesh was fighting with His Spirit but then free will came in. I had the will to welcome Him so that I could have the mind of Christ OR I could be disobedient and act as if the world owed me something. I thought of the joy I had that very morning as I smiled looking to the sky while I skipped to the bus,  30 minutes ahead of time. I missed my joy. So I said this very thing, “Okay. I am angry but I will let You in because You have been too good to me. Again I repeat, I am angry. But I will let it go. I can think on You instead and give thanks for all that You have done in, through, and for me.” Within seconds my anger was somewhere beneath me and I turned my music up as I began looking to the sky and smiling at God once again. Before I even consciously thought about it a simple, “Thank You God” flew out of my mouth. Wait. When was the last time I told God thank you? I don’t mean after He answered a desperate prayer but simply because of who He is?

Philippians 4:6 (KJV): “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”

Later that day my Mom called and before hanging up she said, “And cheer up. I hope next time we talk you are in better spirits.” I hadn’t thought to curb my attitude during our conversation. I wanted to hurry and hang up so that I could think more on my current unfortunate circumstances. I grudgingly said,” Well okay. I am just dealing with some things.” My Mother began to attempt to find out what was bothering me but my usual response to stress is to not share it unless it is necessary or if I become so weary that it runs out of my mouth before I catch it. While she was fishing for answers I put my iPad away from my face and thought: She is paying attention. 1 Chronicles 16:8 (KJV):“Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people.” Am I going to give my joy away or am I going to give God thanks?

Ephesians 5:4 (KJV): “Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.”

How is that we have better manners when dealing with individuals on Earth than we do with our Heavenly Father? I often find myself showering people with thank yous and excuse mes. Why was it a conscious effort to say to God? It was new for me to praise my way out of my fury because when I am upset I tend to get tunnel vision, only focusing on what rubbed me the wrong way. What a new beginning that was for me because no one likes to be angry. The issues that I faced are still relevant but I pray that I praise my way through the rest as well. I know for sure that the good outweighs the bad, no doubt about that.

Ephesians 5:20 (KJV): “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Today I found myself frustrated and deciding that I would go home early from school right after my doctor’s appointment but while sitting in the doctor’s office I had time to reflect. There I was sitting in the office with full insurance, playing on my iPad, thinking about the many options I would have for dinner, and looking down at my shoes and thinking that I want new ones although the current pair aren’t ruined….in summary still being unsatisfied. It really hit me when I saw a sickly man come out of the doctor’s office with a bunch of band aids covering the places where he had to get blood drawn. Within 10 minutes my blood was drawn, tested, and I was released to go home with perfectly normal levels. At that moment I had to thank God. There I was with perfect health and with every thing I have practically ever wanted sitting in my lap and I was aimlessly walking with a frown on my face. That was something to be checked. Sure, things in my life aren’t perfect but I rest assured knowing that there is no such thing. But even above health, finance, and other miscellaneous blessings (though people with poor health, shaky finances, and who have close to nothing to call their own can still be rich in Spirit) I can give thanks because I have salvation. If I were hospitalized with an estimated 2 weeks to live and accustomed to moving from place to place like a nomad without anyone to call friend or family I would still have a reason to say thank You to the Father. He is just that much of an almighty God.

Psalms 79:13 (KJV): “So we thy people and sheep of thy pasture will give thee thanks for ever: we will shew forth thy praise to all generations.”

We must not forget the greatest gift of all; salvation. Not even the world can forcefully take that away from us. I talked with a dear Sister in the Lord today and though our flesh would rather complain and look for pity, we asked for God to allow us to sharpen each other during our trying time. Our only answer was to take matters to the Lord as we swallowed anger and sadness so that we could open our mouths to pour out love, blessings, and praise. We must forever sing His praise! It is always easier to give thanks when things seem favorable in our eyes but the true test is when we are able to give thanks in the midst of trouble. Even if the world were to shatter before my eyes I pray that I hold on to my salvation as the most valuable thing that I possess. It is nothing that I worked for. It is nothing that I could demand. It is simply a gift from a Father who loved me when I didn’t love myself. I can only humbly accept, offering my body as a living sacrifice.

Lord, please give me a mind to give thanks to You at all times. Praising You because You are worthy. Praising You because You are bigger than our problems. Simply praising You for who You are.

Psalm 100:4 (KJV): ” 4Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.”

A Dehydrated Well

John 4:13-14 (KJV): 13Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:14But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”

I love water. I love the way it tastes, the health benefits it offers, and how abundant the supply is. However, while on Spring Break vacation I was traveling so much that I was not able to consume as much water as my body is used to and my body recognized. I found myself light-headed, wanting to drink more than I wanted to eat, having numerous headaches, unable to sleep because of nausea, and experiencing weakness. I didn’t like this feeling so I made it my business to get water each time that I could, even if it resulted in me rushing to the restroom all throughout the night. It was worth it because I didn’t want to do damage to my body. My water intake needed to be monitored because it is clearly vital for our existence, as we know that our body is made up of more water than anything else.

John 7:38 (KJV): 38He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.”

Have you ever felt that God was far away? Like He is wasn’t as close as He used to be? The same way my flesh let me know that I physically needed water, my spirit has also alarmed me of my spiritual dehydration as well.

Isaiah 44:3 (KJV): ” 3For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring.”

These past few weeks I have found myself asking God where He is. When I don’t seem to hear a response I begin to think. Similarly to how I used to do as a child when I heard my parents yell my name with super authority. I would scan my mind of all of the things that I could have done wrong. When asking God where He is I find myself scanning my mind, thinking of sins I may have committed to push Him away. Sure, I sin each and every day but I couldn’t think of any sin I was freely indulging in. I began to think it was something different that He wanted to bring to my attention. The transgressions that came to mind were sins that I had been fighting against and repented for, plus God didn’t put on my heart that there was something specific that He wasn’t pleased with. So what else could it be? Why does my bestfriend seem so far? Why does Satan feel closer than God? Where could my First Love be? Does He know that I love Him? I know that He loves me. So where is He? Is He really quiet or can I simply not hear Him? Am I talking too much, not giving Him enough time or opportunity to talk? Is He talking but not saying what I want to hear? Something isn’t right and I can’t sweep it under the carpet. I want to address it so my Father and I can continue in holy collaboration.

Psalm 42: 1-2 (KJV): 1As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.2My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?”

I am learning that aside from our sins, God can hide from us JUST so that we can seek Him. It is a terrible feeling to feel distant from someone you care for so deeply. But the key is that if we REALLY love God, we will take heed to His getting our attention. We often say that we love Him but the proof is if we keep His commandments (John 14:15). I appreciate that I am even able to recognize the presence of God because I was only aware after I stopped treating God like a business partner and began to seek Him as a Groom. He gives us a mind to know when something isn’t right. We have no wisdom. We have no knowledge. We have no insight– aside from what He gives us. We must praise Him for giving us understanding of spiritual things.

John 7:37 (KJV): ” 37In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.”

I understand what God is doing in my life at the moment. He is allowing me to know what it is like for Him to not feel as close as what I am used to. I thank Him for giving me a mind and heart to recognize what is going on and I pray that He gives me the perseverance to forever seek Him. Thirst that will drive me to pick up the Bible before I pick up a fashion magazine or listen to a sermon rather than seeing what the world is up to. Being thirsty for Him will encourage me to pray as soon as I open my eyes rather checking my iPad as soon as I realize I am awake. God gives us things and people to enjoy but our thirst puts Him first. The fact that I am clueless and unsure about a lot of things in my life right now gives opportunity for the thirst for our Savior to provide answers. The questions I have can only be answered by Him and guess what? He will only give them if I seek Him. He isn’t a machine that spits out what we want after we push a button and He doesn’t work like Google–one click cannot solve all of our problems. Thirst allows us to become hidden in Him but it is different from anything that is and will ever be required for us to do on Earth. He knows that, which is why He gets our attention –so that we can step it up for Him. We live by His standards, not the world’s.

Matthew 5:6 (KJV): 6Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”

I am forever grateful knowing that my thirst in Him can be filled. It is only because I am human that I have potential to have a spiritually dehydrated well. I mean we naturally try to become complete in the world and unfortunately we become so comfortable that we sometimes lose our integrity of remaining competent in our Father’s kingdom. Or maybe it is fortunate because our weakness and folly allows His divine interventions to give Him glory. Our thirst for Him humbles us and reminds us that WE NEED HIM! I appreciate anything that gives our Father glory and I pray that I take the necessary steps to edify Him in all that I do.

John 19:28 (KJV): 28After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.”

Lord, I am nothing without You. I am weak, but I want to boast in Your strength. I am thirsty for You and I want Your living water to flow through me. I have been selfish but I ask that You to make me selfless. I confess that when You feel far, my life shatters. I want more of You and nothing less. I want You in my heart, forever–as I pray that I follow You all of the way to glory. You are my everything Father. If I am in error in any way, please correct my path. I beg that You search my heart and expose any wicked way that be in me. I pray for humility, that I may humbly do Your work only remaining confident in the ability of Your power, Your authority, and Your strength. This is why I can boast in my weakness, because it provides opportunity for Your edification. I want You to consume my entire being. I want the sweet scent of Your word to be entangled in every fiber of existence. I want my flesh completely crucified and my spirit to be completely alive in You. Help me remain thirsty Lord, I beg of You. I love You only because You loved me first. I want the Holy Ghost fire to shock my system, causing my heart to beat to a rhythm unknown to man. I want a new song of praise, a new dance, a new jubilee unto You. I don’t want the muddy water from puddles in the world. I don’t want artificially flavored water from Satan. I want Your holy water! I pray that You keep me focused, desperate, eager, and thirsty for You. All of the way to glory. Amen.

Revelation 7:16-17 (KJV): 16They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.17For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”

Universal Prevail

I am currently on vacation in Florence (Tuscany) Italy at the moment. A friend and I couldn’t imagine not doing anything today and since we didn’t have a church to attend today, we decided to go to our favorite mountain top and have our own service. It was spectacular to say the least. It was amazing to cry out to Him while looking down at the country.

 Psalm 65:6 (KJV): ” 6Which by his strength setteth fast the mountains; being girded with power.”

I had an interesting experience in Milan, Italy–right before I left for Florence. I was tired when I landed in Italy and so my friend and I decided to take a taxi to our hotel in Milan. As we approached the hotel we saw women standing in front of their cars just lounging and talking. As we passed the women the taxi driver stated, “You are staying in the prostitute district. Keep your doors locked and eyes open at all times.” My eyes nearly fell out of my head when I heard that we were staying in a prostitution district. While I wasn’t too concerned about the prostitutes, I thought about the men who typically become involved with these women. The taxi driver mentioned us being cautious a few more times, making me more concerned. Then at one point my friend and I said, “Well we were going to be careful anyway. It probably isn’t that big of a deal.”

Until…we got into the hotel.

The first thing the receptionist did was asked for us to fill out a police report. I was confused about what was going on because the hotel was pretty expensive and had great reviews. We felt tricked and nervous about having to fill out a police report before even paying the remainder of the payment for the room. It was after 1 am and we had nowhere else to go so we gathered our things and went up the steps into our room. We were supposed to stay there until about noon the next day but we already knew that our schedule needed to change. I will admit, we were terrified– trying to stay close in the room, not touching anything if we didn’t have to. We refused to sit on the beds and certainly didn’t plan to shower there. The uneasiness in the room was strong enough to grab the attention of even the most skeptical non-believer. It was time to pray.

1 Peter 3:8 (KJV): ” Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous.”

We began praying for our protection and peace within and around us. I soon found myself beginning to pray for the women and men who are indulging in these sinful acts. I began praying for their salvation and that Satan’s hold would be broken in their lives. That caught me by a surprise because I began praying for myself and ended up praying for them. This shows me that the Lord was taking over because my flesh only thinks of itself but He is selfless and thinks of others. My friend and I spent the rest of the night listening to Gospel and reading Scripture. I was hoping to make a breakthrough as a vessel to help any captive souls willing to receive Christ as their Lord and Savior. I wanted the Spirit of God to dwell in that place, disturbing all wickedness taking over. I was praying that the blood of Jesus would prevail for all of those who wish to know Him.

On our special mountain top I thought about that experience in Milan, how His blood prevails universally. I have prayed many prayers in America and Denmark but I never imagined to pray that same prayer in Italy. My friend and I encouraged each other to trample over fear and rejoice in His power. At one point I said, ” Well, God can save anyone! Even a prostitute. I mean, if He can change a hardcore atheist.. it isn’t over unless He says it is over.” Then my friend responded, ” Yep, Look at Mary Magdalene.”

Psalm 95:4 (KJV): “In his hand are the deep places of the earth: the strength of the hills is his also.”

After reading the resurrection passage this afternoon I rejoiced while thinking of His blood offering redemption to each and every one of us. While we may need to be in a certain state to get the new Apple product first or be in a specific country to have the best tasting water– His blood has no boundaries.

Psalm 36:6 (KJV): “Thy righteousness is like the great mountains; thy judgments are a great deep: O Lord, thou preservest man and beast.”

I looked to my left and saw some random things piled together and I thought,”Why is this ugly stuff in the center of this beautiful view?” But similarly,  we can always question why ugly sin rests in His beautiful temples. The picture below was small compared to the rest of the scenery but it was “ugly” enough to constantly catch my attention. That is our sin.

It is refreshing to have His blood purge all filth from us–one moment at a time.

Amos 9:13 (KJV):  13Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt.”

Even when we try to hide our sins. Yep, those secret sins–He sees those too. Don’t be too ashamed to admit and confess. Thank Him for searching your heart and discovering all that is deeply rooted and dormant.

Follow the path that He has already paved for you. His blood has already conquered death, conquered sin, conquered disease, conquered generational curses–conquered all wickedness in high places. He went before us because He had the heart and mind to be obedient to the Father and do what none of us could do.

Hold tight Body of Christ! He has shed His precious blood so that we may have life, so that we may have redemption. I loved being able to feel His presence and His forgiveness all of the away on the hills of Italy. The blood isn’t only for me but also for you. I spoke with my Mother today as she told me how she enjoyed her first time in church, after maybe 5 years. Towards the end of the conversation my Mom began to compare her walk with others, using them as a guide. My only suggestion is that she look for God to lead her, not man. It is always vital for us to meet Christ before we meet the Christian. The same thing He does for one vessel He can do for another.

Romans 2:11 (KJV): ” 11For there is no respect of persons with God.”

We cannot forget that His blood prevails universally!

Preparing For His Many Seasons

Where do I start?

 Genesis 1:14 (KJV): “And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years.” 

God has seasons, many of them. The Bible even tells us so that we can be prepared. It isn’t a matter of possibly entering a season or leaving one because it WILL happen. If anything, it is a matter of preparation.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-11 (KJV):1To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; 3A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;4A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;5A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;6A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;7A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;8A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.9What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboureth?10I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it.11He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.”

Within the past few months God has been showing a tiny bit of the way He works, when He transitions us through seasons. My studying abroad just being one of them, He has gotten my attention in a very unusual way. I received news a few weeks ago and while the news isn’t really important–it was so shocking that I had to run into the bathroom and simply cry. I cried because God was preparing me for a new season, a season that I knew would be coming. While in the bathroom for a short while I gathered myself, deciding to reach out and talk with someone from back home. I decided to call a special young man in my life, who I call Calev. I was frustrated with the fact that while trying to reach out to America my email shut down, I couldn’t make phonecalls, and text messages barely went through. It seemed like everything was being blocked. At one point Calev was able to send me a text that read, ” Maybe God is trying to get your attention. Maybe He is shutting everything down so that you can cry out to Him.” This made perfect sense. Why didn’t I think of that? And so I did. I went back into the bathroom and I cried and cried and cried. I cried not because the news was necessarily bad, and not necessarily because I was informed that a new season was approaching but I was crying because I didn’t feel prepared for the season to change. I could only ask the Lord to help me be ready. As I cried out to Him all I could say was, “Lord, please just give me a little more time.”

Acts 1:7 (KJV): “And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.”

Will God give me more time? Who knows. But do I need to get ready…regardless? I sure do.

I want to share another example. As I prepare for my last year in college, I find myself intimidated by the season I am leaving and the season that is waiting for me. I don’t know the season but I know there has to be one, God doesn’t run out of seasons or plans for us.

I had a dream months ago about my family throwing me a going away party before I left to travel abroad. The dream was odd to me because as individuals came to my house, they each had a baby gift. As I saw each baby gift I thought, ” Why are they bringing all of this baby stuff? I am no baby!” But as the dream continued, I found myself sitting on my living room floor similar to how I used to when I was about 3 or 4 years old, playing with dolls. Not only was my house full with baby gifts, but I was sitting on the floor acting like a baby! After the dream I decided I would no longer fear studying abroad or my life changing according to His will.

Last week I had another dream. In the dream it was the graduation day of this year’s class, 2012. As the seniors of my college crossed the stage my school brought out a cake crowning my class, 2013, the new seniors. Within seconds everyone disappeared and I was alone with the cake. I looked to my left and there was a baby crawling towards the cake. I looked, wondering whose baby it was. The baby and I seemed to understand how each other was feeling, although we didn’t say a word to each other. For the remainder of the dream the baby and I sat in front of the cake, slowly eating the icing until there was none left covering the cake.

Genesis 8:22 (KJV): “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” 

Now, I don’t like to go deep into interpreting dreams unless the Lord gives me wisdom and insight. However, these dreams seem to have a clear message. I am fearful of the seasons before me. Just as I  shared above, my prayer has been, “God give me more time,” when they should actually be, “God, prepare me for this new season.” We can’t run or hide from the seasons that await us. We must only ask that we are prepared for them. A season to begin new relationships. A season to end old relationships. Even a season to have physically distant relationships, which allow you to become more spiritually connected. Some seasons are temporary, while others can be permanent. 

Daniel 2:12 (KJV): “And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding.”

Wouldn’t life be boring and probably fruitless without seasons? I know I certainly wouldn’t want Satan riding me for more than a season! He is annoying just for the season he gets to tempt. Luke 4:13 (KJV): ” And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.” God does us a favor with giving us time to prepare even for our season of temptation. Sometimes entering a new season can make us feel discouraged, especially if things are tight and seem to lack very little fruit, if any at all.Galatians 6:9 (KJV): “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Know that even the Heavens and the Earth adhere to His seasonsPsalm 104:19 (KJV): “He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down. The seasons of the year are only possible because He embedded seasonal instructions into them. Everything truly does have a season.
I want everyone to be encouraged by the seasons He is taking you out of or bringing you into. He says He knows the plans He has for us (Jeremiah 29:11). I write this to you all as I first write to myself–do not fear. Our God is a mighty God and everything He does, He does it with our best interest in mind. So many seasons, so many changes, so many blessings. Even the seasons that are storms, still remain as blessings. Some seasons may seem more drastic than others or more unexpected than the last but hold tight– He isn’t an overbearing or overwhelming God. I often feel like I am not ready for a new season simply because I had gotten so comfortable in the season that I was in. I was so comfortable in the old that I became intimidated and fearful for the new. We all experience this stage of uncertainty at some point but we MUST be still and know that He is God (Psalm 46:10).
 1 Thessalonians 5:1 (KJV): “But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.”
Again, it isn’t a matter of there being a change of seasons. The goal is simply that we are ready for the change. We must not rush the seasons. We must not try to postpone the seasons. We must merely buckle down and prepare for His many seasons. Keeping in mind that obedience is better than sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22) . If we hold fast to the leading of the Holy Spirit, it is only then that we can be prepared for our seasons in Him, decently and in order (1 Corinthians 14:40). 
Matthew 24:32 (KJV): “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh.” 

Help us prepare Lord. As we stand with our armor on. As we stand with an open mind and heart to Your leading. As we stand singing songs of praise during our quiet times with You. As we cry out to You yelling, “Abba!” As we nervously ask for directions from You. As we recognize that the world doesn’t have the answers…. but that You do. As we fervently seek, pray and fast to serve You in Spirit and in Truth– prepare us. Even if our hearts ache in disappointment. Even if our mind is foggy with confusion. Even if we rant in anger. Please break our flesh and prepare our spirit. Your will above our own. Amen.
Psalm 1:3 (KJV): “And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.