June 18, 2016

Jesus was not afraid to get dirty

He had one set of clothing, and yet welcomed little children to come to him.

He had walked a long distance, and was hungry, yet spoke to a woman drawing water from a well who could have soiled his reputation, if he had cared in the least about it.

He was a carpenter, and carpenters sweat, and the work is dusty, and hard, yet precise.

He walked; he was always walking.

He had people pressing in around him, and wanting from him, and he gave to them, and loved them.

He did not hide from the needy.

He was not concerned about his health, nor fearful that he would die before his time.

He said, and coming from him, his words are commands, "Follow me."

Will you?

Do you?

If you do, then you will find that he will lead you to God.

In knowing God, and having access to his throne, you are not afraid to get dirty.

While your soul is perfect, your body will stink from labor.

Your body will get tired from serving.

Your body will be reduced to dust some day, but your soul, if you know God, will see God.

You will have new eyes.

Until then, see with the eyes of your soul the needs of others, and if you do, you'll be getting dirty.

You will share your talent, and you will be in the process of being used up till he calls you home.

Are you hiding under a bushel, and fearful of people, and any need they may have?

Out of the abundance of love that God pours into the heart of the redeemed, they love.

They walk the way of their Savior into the homes, and hearts of the needy, and are not afraid of dirt.

Are you?

Do you fear the sin of others, and the filth of their lives?

Consider why.

The Pharisees were a group of religious people who stood back, and walked around, and clung to their religiosity, and helped no one but themselves to as much ease as they could get.

Pharisees walk the easy road, and avoid work, and don't see need, and think that they are righteous.

Right hearts walk right into a muddy mess and help, and soothe, and carry loads.

Fearful only of leaving someone behind, they serve.

Do you?










June 15, 2016

Keeping it clean

I have discovered a tool in my kitchen that, throughout my day, I do not try to keep clean.

It's a towel.

Not just any towel either.

One of my favorite towels for the kitchen, and found at Walmart, is the flour sack towel.

It is soft, pliable, big, but not too big, and I just love them.

Each day, I get a clean one out of my stash, and I don't fret over keeping it clean.

In fact, most all of my clean towels still have stains on them, and I allow for that too.

It's not important that they are perfectly white. It is important that they are available when I need one.

With my towel, I wipe my sweaty brow, sticky or greasy hands, and runny noses.

Its purpose is not to stay clean, and pretty, but to be used to benefit others.

I use it as I decide, and as needed for it is my tool.

At the end of the day, it is tossed aside to be washed, and then used again.

I have a very humble tool.

I easily use one, maybe two, every day.

It doesn't call the shots, but complies, and never fusses (duh!).

What is the purpose of the redeemed soul?

Is it to sit and look pretty?

Is it to pick and choose which jobs it will do in service for its King?

For sure, it cannot keep itself clean, for if it had that ability, then Christ died for it for no reason.

But he died that we might be perfectly white, and the redeemed soul is just that, and it is always available to do the work commanded of it, for it loves God.

Yes, it turns from evil, for it abhors that which God hates.

And God hates no person.

Neither does the redeemed, and they do not, and will not turn their backs on anyone.

However, they find that they enjoy doing the opposite of what they did when they were dirty.

They quit watching filth, and reading filth, and listening to filth.

(They don't condemn those who do still enjoy sin. They pray for them. They love them.)

They have a new mind.

Their pure souls long for heaven, but all the while, they are used up, and wrung out like a towel, and they don't complain; they comply, for they again, they love God.

He not only made them pure, he keeps them pure.

He makes a way for them to flee evil, and they take it, for the temptations are never too strong.

At the end of the day, they rest, and they may even take a rest in the middle of the day, if needed, or if he bids them to do so, for they are simply servants with hearts made pure by a washing in grace.

They don't fret over the possibility of sinning, for they are busy serving.

They are fully aware that all things work together for their good, and they walk steadily onward.

They will be the towel God can use to wipe weeping eyes, and dirty feet, and serve as needed.

Does that describe you?

Or do you sit at home keeping yourself clean?

If that is the case, then how is it that you need, or needed, a Savior?

If a soul can keep itself clean, then can a soul, who does not profess salvation, do that too?

If you can keep yourself clean, then how do you have that power?

What role do you play in that process?

Do you "touch not," and "taste not," and in doing so, then do you think yourself holy?

Is that the way it works?

It is time to study, and know.

It is time to seek God, and repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.










June 14, 2016

Do you live by how you feel?

"I feel sad."

"I feel happy."

"I feel despair."

"I feel depressed."

"I feel discouraged."

There are so many ways to "feel" about life in general.

Weddings can make us "feel" happy, and divorces can make us "feel" sad.

Births? Happy!

Death? Sad!

But that is not always the case. There are some who are not happy about births, and some who are glad that someone has finally passed. So feelings are not universally felt the same way.

Feelings come and go.

Moods.

Moods is another word for feelings.

If I'm up, then hubby can expect a kiss, and a great meal!

If I'm down, then hubby can expect to get his own food, and stay away from me.

If I've had my rest, then I'll be a good girl; I might even smile at a stranger.

If I've not slept well, well then, you better keep your distance, and don't cross me.

If I don't physically feel just right, then I may not speak with kindness.

That's just the way it is with some people.

But with the redeemed, they don't live by feelings.

They live by faith.

What does that mean exactly?

They get it.

They have an understanding about God.

They know him.

They know that it matters not whether they have slept, or eaten well, or whether they ache, or not.

They love. Because they've repented, and been washed, they love. They love God, and obey him.

They have been given a new nature that does not originate with man and woman.

They have been born again through the Spirit of God.

New people, they are.

They do not walk, talk, or act like the world, and the world is very moody.

Are you?

If so, consider that you need to be born new.

Being born new is not of your doing.

It is an act of God on you. See John 1:13. We are commanded to seek God.

We are not told in Scripture to pray a prayer to accept Jesus.

We are told to follow Jesus.

To follow him, we must know what he taught, and then follow those ways, and as we follow him, our steps take us to God, and in walking toward God, the Spirit convicts us of sin, and shows us where we are not loving someone. After repenting of that hate, the Spirit no longer convicts a soul.

The Spirit convinces the redeemed over and over to love, and the redeemed will love.

They find new ways to love, and different avenues to love, and new people to love.

They are always loving.

To do otherwise is to hate.

Hate and love cannot abide in a soul simultaneously (Matthew 7:18).

If you want to "feel" like that does happen, then you can choose to do that.

That is an option. It is a lie nevertheless. But people can choose to believe a lie.

To believe the truth, and know it, one must study it.

Do you?

Or do you just "feel" like you know the Word?

Faith comes by hearing the Word of God.

Study the Word.

Then you will be proven in your faith.

Your feelings will come into alignment with faith (truth, fact, unswerving walk).

The redeemed know that feelings have nothing to do with abundant life.

Do you know that for a certainty?

They know that their salvation had nothing to do with them.

They are not proud that they are saved.

They are thankful.

Always thankful that their sin-sick soul is no longer sick and in sin.

Seek God. Repent of your sin. The days are short here on earth.

I don't feel like that is true; by faith I know it is true.

The most fit person you know can drop dead.

The fattest person you know can live to be ninety.

Do you feel that is not so?

It is true.

You will believe that God has your days numbered, or you won't believe that.

You will believe that the Word says to be perfect, and it means what it says, or you won't.

You may just not "feel" that some things are true.

Your feelings do not change truth.

Many believed, and still may believe that the world is flat, and they "feel" very strongly about it.

So what.

How will you know that you are born new?

Love.

It is the one "feeling" that God gives to the repentant, and in the repentant, love is not a feeling.

Love is an action word.

Feel it, or not, the redeemed love.

Do you?


June 13, 2016

Knowing your betrayer

How horrible do you think it would be to know the one who will betray you, or has betrayed you?

It is not always the case that the betrayer is known.

Jesus knew the one who would betray him.

We won't always know.

But Jesus did,

And he loved him anyway.

He did not expose him, nor his heart to anyone else, and he did not try to manipulate him.

He loved him.

To the cross, he took the sin of his betrayer. He bore the shame. He died for it.

Do you?

Just like Jesus, you may know your betrayer.

Just like Jesus, you will be betrayed.

If you follow him, that is.

For where the footsteps of Jesus trod, so will the follower's go.

So when you get a prompt from the Spirit that tells you who it is, was, or will be, what will you do?

What have you done with what may have already been a betrayal in your life?

Whom do you tell about it? Whom did you tell? Have you let go of that marriage, and/or friendship?

Or have you loved that soul anyway, and covered over their sin anyway, and done all that you can, and still can do, to love that person to the Savior?

The betrayer will be a very close person to you.

Have you cut communication, and all ties with them?

Is your reputation more important, and your feelings, and your trust in humanity?

Jesus made of himself no reputation, and lived by faith, and trusted no one but God.

He commands that we follow him in all his ways.

Do you?

June 12, 2016

"It is only $10 a month"

Have you heard a sales pitch like that lately?

Some glam bags are as much as $20 a month.

The taste club sample box is only $10 a month.

Book of the month is about $15 a month.

I'm not knocking these deals.

But every time I hear one hawked, I think that over the course of a year, over $100 is easily spent.

That's not much.

But here is what niggles my mind.

Over the span of 10 years, that $100 a month has turned into $1000 or more.

The stuff that we spend our money on is no one's business but our own.

I will therefore get to the point.

Do you easily part with your $$ when it comes to giving to the poor?

Have you given, over the last 10 years, more than $1000 to someone poor?

In Galatians 2, the apostles are talking about where they will go on their mission trips, and to whom they will share the gospel with as they go, and Paul tells us that he was specifically encouraged to not only spread the gospel, but to remember the poor as well.

What was his response to that encouragement?

He says that "remembering the poor" was the very thing that he was eager to do.

Do you remember the poor, or do you seldom think of them?

Do you have poor friends?

Do you give to the beggar on the corner?

Jesus said that we are to give to the one who asks of us, and to not turn away from them.

The true disciple follower of Jesus hears that and says, "You got it, Lord!"

The true believer is eager to do as commanded.

Why?

They love God (I John 5:3).

Do you?

To love God will not cost you $10 a month, it will cost you your life.

Loving God requires total surrender, and agreement with God about your sin.

Then he washes you. Then you are obedient. And again....why? Because the grace that is applied to your soul causes obedience, for the freedom that comes with repentance is wrapped up in love.

You will give if you love God.

You can give and not love God.

But you cannot love God and not give.

It will be the one thing that you are eager to do.




Hurting, and bleeding, and dying for me

My Savior, after being misunderstood by his friends, and then after being betrayed by one of them, and then after being falsely accused, mocked, and beaten, still went on forward to my salvation.

He bled, and being profusely tired, and while sweating through the pain, he walked on for me.

For whom will I dare to sweat, and walk on in love for the sake of salvation?

No, I do not need to die for the salvation of another. Not like Jesus died.

But just for this moment in time, and then the next, whom will I serve?

For whom will I allow a drop or two of sweat from my brow?

Is that too much to ask?

Will the footsteps of Jesus lead me there?

To work, to die, to live for others— that is the way of those who repent, turn, and are washed.

They see with new eyes, and their energy is then expended for the sake of others.

Their longing is that all may know the God they love.

With not one complaint, Jesus continued to love me all the way to soldiers who pierced his side.

Where will he take me today?

Where is he taking you?

For all of us, he desires to take us to death that we might live, abundantly sweat, and die for others.

It is in dying that we abundantly live.

The great liar, and the world will tell you otherwise.

What will you believe?

In whom do you believe?

If you say that it is Christ, then do you love, and live abundantly— for others?

Will you?

Can you?

Have you repented, and do you trust in Christ alone, and love God with all your heart?

Will you follow him to the death of the lies that you believe?

Will you follow him to the life he came to give?

Will you hurt, and bleed, and die, with no complaint, for others?

Oh the grace of my Lord. It's given, not to be hoarded, but shared. And share it you will, when it washes over your cleansed soul until one day soon you'll stand before him, casting your crowns.

Until then, his soldiers hurt, and bleed, and die for their world.

Do you?

Think about it

Do you have a few, or many, for whom you pray?

Are you waiting patiently for them to know God, and change, and do you expect them to repent, and then be joyful always, and free from the bondage of sin, and do you think that you will see them change in your lifetime?

What if that doesn't happen?

Will you continue to pray?

To follow Jesus, one will follow him in all his ways, and in what he taught.

Jesus had twelve men who followed him.

None of them followed for the right reasons.

Jesus died having never seen even one of them come into an understanding of true redemption.

None of them believed that Jesus really was who he said that he was.

None of them believed that he would rise again.

They thought their Messiah was gone for good.

The "kingdom" they were expecting, and wanting had not been set up on earth.

In obedience to go and wait in the upper room, then they finally got it.

Then they were never the same again.

Then they spoke the gospel message, and went into all the world changed in their hearts.

Then they knew that this earth was not their home.

Then they wanted nothing but to know God, and share love.

Then they never vied for position, power, or prestige.

Until then, Jesus loved them, never condemned them, and continued to encourage them.

How about you?

Is that your practice?

When "someone" is slow to respond to the call of the Lord, then what do you do about it?

Do you continue to love anyhow, or do you save that type of love for those who think like you, and act like you, and if so, then how is that different than the Pharisees?

Pharisaical behavior says, "Behave (like I behave), and then I'll love you."

Jesus laid down his life that others would be able to behave.

God gives his spirit to those who repent that they might have the power to love unconditionally.

Think about it.

To whom, and for whom do you put down your desires, and live exclusively for the desires of God?

And what exactly does God desire?

That we love him with all that is within us, and others as ourselves.

Whom do you feed, care for, and love on even though you may think them unworthy?

And is it ever the place of a servant of God to deem anyone unworthy?

Would the child of God go about deeming others to be this way or that?

Or do they simply love?

What is the point of being set free by Christ?

From what are we set free?

Why is freedom given to a repentant soul?

What's the point?

It's time to think about it.

It's time to examine your heart.

Do you love?

Do you die daily that others might see your good works, and glorify your Father in heaven?

Those who truly follow Jesus do just that, and they find his yoke easy, and the burden light.

Do you?


June 10, 2016

A peculiar people

The redeemed are called "peculiar" in Scripture.

Do you wonder in what way that is the situation?

Is it in the way that they dress?

Well, certainly modesty enters the picture, but if modesty were "the" central issue, then all Amish, and Mennonite people would be saved, and no where do we see, "Dress like the Amish, or Mennonite, and thou shalt be saved" in Scripture.

Is it in the way one talks?

Well, again, speech patterns enter the picture, but if talk were the only way, then all the religious leaders, at least how they talk in public settings, would be saved, but no where do we see, "Speak like religious leaders, at least in public, and thou shalt be saved" in Scripture.

Is it in the way one goes about daily activities?

Yes, that is part of it too, but if the way one eats, and drinks, and does this, and doesn't do that were the way to salvation, then Scripture would go like this, "Don't drink caffeine, and worship only on Saturday, and never eat meat, and never watch an R-rated film, and don't play cards, drink wine, or associate with those who do, and thou shalt be saved."

The one determining factor that makes redeemed people peculiar, and followers of Jesus, is love.

By this (meaning love) will everyone know that you are my disciples (John 13:35).

It is in the way that they love.

It is different from the ways of the world.

The world will "love" you if you love first, and in return, and will bite and devour you if you don't.

Do you love?

When someone betrays you, do you love?

When someone is unkind to you after you've been kind to them, do you love?

When someone close to you disappoints you, again, and again, and always, do you love?

Jesus had twelve men who indicated to Jesus that they loved him, and would follow him to their death if needed, and then they didn't, and Jesus loved them still, and laid down his life for them.

For whom do you lay down you life?

Is it only for those who love you back?

Jesus asks, "What type of love is that?" in Luke 6:32.

That is easy, he says, for even sinners can do that .

The road that the followers of Jesus walk is hard, but very doable, for he gives to those who follow him life, and freedom, and power to love always, and those who have his power bless their enemies, and pray for those who persecute them, and they follow him, which means that they do as he says.

Do you?

June 9, 2016

The never-ending tending

"...train the young women to love their husbands and children,
to be self-controlled, 
 pure, 
working at home, 
kind, 
and submissive to their own husbands, 
that the word of God may not be reviled. 
(Titus 2:4-5)

Do you have a home, and a husband, and children?

Do you tend to complain about anything that goes with those three?

Do words of contention flow from your lips when you are gathered with girlfriends?

Let's pretend that there was a complaint department where you could take all those words. 

Now, I want you to see tending that department a woman who has no husband to help with the children, and a woman who cannot conceive, or a woman who finds it difficult, and also a woman who is deaf, and cannot hear her baby's cry, and a woman who, for whatever reason, has no husband, children, or home, and then go ahead and tell her your woes.

The never-ending tending that occurs in the life of the redeemed woman is of God's design.

You may fight, and fuss, and strain against your life, or conform to the image of God.

In repentance, and a contrite heart, God meets a soul.

He washes and makes one whole.

The never-ending tending becomes joy unspeakable, and full of glory, and the woman who is conformed to God lifts up the name of God in praise and thanksgiving, and turns to change yet another diaper, and sweep the floor, yet again, and hugs her husband, and keeps a quiet heart. 

Do you?


June 8, 2016

Only a tyrant

Can a soul truly love God with all that is in them this side of heaven?

Absolutely.

What God commands, he requires to be done.

He did not say, "You'll be perfect in heaven someday, till then, just keep trying."

He did command, "Be perfect," and that we are to love him with all that is in us.

What God commands, he also provides a way for the command to be obeyed.

He makes the earthly soul victorious.

Only a tyrant would command absolute love and then oppressively demand it.

But the God, who is love, gives to those who follow Jesus, a new heart.

It is a gift he gives, and in the giving of the heart of love, to replace a heart of hate, the true believer is able to do as commanded, and absolutely know that they have nothing to do with the love in them.

Tyrants have subservience through fear.

Subjects, to a tyrant, can fake their love, smile, and speak accolades, and give service, and hate the oppressive ruler all at the same time, and may even wilt under the heavy load demanded of them.

They may even be called out for having a divided heart and executed for it.

No one really loves a tyrant, except for the goodies that come while following one.

God, however, gives what his child cannot do alone.

His hand is not slack when it comes to love; but is generous like an endless flood.

What earthly parent, if given the ability to give their child an obedient heart, would not do it?

And God alone has that ability, and gives new hearts to those who repent.

The God of love waits, all the while commanding a heart undivided.

Is yours?

Do you have an undivided heart?

Or do you love this world, and hang onto hate, rationalizing your sin, yet proclaiming to love God?

If so, seek God alone, with all that is within you.

Study the Word.

Know what Jesus taught, and follow him.

Upon repentance, he takes a soul to the Father, and introduces the perfect soul to the Father.

That introduction is a face-to-face meeting with grace.

That soul no longer serves the tyrant of "I got to be good," for they are given righteousness.

Their once divided heart is no longer torn; it is made whole; it cannot stop singing.

Once and for all time, follow Jesus, and ignore the call of the world.

Choose this day.




To be free...

The greatest joys, one of them, for the redeemed woman is to lift up, at any time, her hands to the Lord, and know that she is clean, and not from any accomplishment on her part, but from what the Lord has done in her, for in her filth, she turned to him, agreeing that she was living in sin, and enjoying it, yet in her turning, she was freed, and the chains dropped, and she finally was home.

No longer fearful that she will sin, she walks light of heart, for she loves every soul she sees.

The sin of hate, grudge-holding, and angst is lifted, washed, and gone.

She is new.

In being given a new heart, she sees everything in the light of grace.

All is new to her.

Her mind is like the mind of Christ.

She loves God with all that is in her.

She is his.

She no longer hides from him.

Malleable, innocent, and free of guilt, her soul is in a constant dance of freedom.

Oh the joy, unspeakable, that fills her every moment.

Truly, Jesus has set her free, and when he sets free, then there is no going back to chains.

To be free, one can get old, be old, be physically ailing, and in pain, yet the soul sings.

To be free, one can be betrayed, have no friends, no compadre, no one who seems to understand and share her joy here on earth, but she has God's ear, and she knows he will give her all she needs.

To be free, one can pray, "Your kingdom come, your will be done," and truly mean it.

For the truly free, the soul controls the body, and the body is at rest, never striving, never manipulating, never fearful, and tense, for the truly free are held in tender hands.

Never fearful of what any man/woman would say or think, the truly free relax, and serve.

The truly free, truly love mindful only of the sacrifice provided for them, they sacrifice for others.

Do you?

Do you desire a steadfast heart that loves God alone?

If so, then agree with God about your sin.

He will turn your night into day.

He turns sadness to joy.

He sets free.

June 7, 2016

Concerning the sins of others

Many believe that they can still sin, and do still sin, upon being saved.

They will even say that they are trying to do better all the time, and that God is helping them, and that they don't get upset with themselves when they sin, or at least they don't let it bother them too much.

If that's true, then do those who believe that way allow the sins of others to not affect them too much?

Dear Friend, if your husband announced to you that he had been lying when he said that he liked your new hairdo, then would you get upset?

Would you wonder what else he had lied about in the past?

Would you tell him to never do that again, and how could you ever believe him if he lies?

If he said, "Okay, I'll never do that again," then would you still have a hard time trusting him when he gave you his word?

How about if the sin was adultery?

What if it was just once?

How many times do you lose your temper, or accuse someone falsely, or envy your neighbor, or perhaps all three, plus you are not always honest either, nor gentle, and you would not lay down your life for that certain someone?

What is your sin?

Does it only rear its ugly head occasionally, and perhaps only around certain people, or only at a specific time of the month?

And do you just avoid certain people, and try to remember to drink more water during certain times of the month, and stay away from caffeine if you are really serious about not sinning?

Does jogging help?

Is that how sin is defeated?

I do not understand the outrage over Josh Duggar's sin when the very ones who fired him from his job, and the ones who expressed how bad he was to do such as he did, would also say that Christians still sin, and that they do as well.

Is their sin not as bad?

Do you put sins in categories?

Should those who fired Josh be fired for stealing maybe paper, or paper clips, or a pen from their job?

What if they committed adultery, way back a long time ago, but no one knows about it?

The scenarios could fill a novel when it comes to sin that is committed.

Did Jesus ever rank sin?

Did he say that if the sin was just done once, or every so often, then it was no big deal?

Would you easily let it go if a friend betrayed you?

Or would you hold it against them until— forever?

How do you see your sin?

How do you see the sins of others?

Is it on an equal plane?

Are yours less significant because you try, and you are saved, and besides that, you don't do things as badly as you used to do, and all of that is according to whom— you?

Do you lie less?

Do you lust less?

Do you hate less?

Is that how the Scriptures portray sin in you, and others?

If you say that you follow Jesus, then that means that you adhere to what he said about everything, including sin in you, and others.

Do you?

Do you know what he said?

How you believe about "whatever" is how you will live with it, and do concerning it.

How you believe about sin is how you will express it to yourself, and others.

How do you talk about sin?

How did Jesus talk about it?

Read Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, and pay close attention.

Study, we are commanded, to reveal to God that we are workers who are approved by him.

That is the way that we won't be ashamed when we stand before him (II Timothy 2:15).

Rightly divide the Word.

But before you can rightly divide it, you must know it.

Do you?




June 6, 2016

What happens when a woman follows Jesus

If a woman chooses to follow Jesus, then he will lead her to repentance.

She will turn from sin.

She will learn from him.

To learn from him, she will study his words.

He will show her what sin is.

He will teach her about love.

She will be his student, and he will be her teacher.

In the end, she will submit to him, and he will lead her to God.

In the end, she will know God, and she will fear no more.

In the end, she will live with him forever in heaven.

Till then, she will long for her eternal home, and be as a foreigner here on earth.

Things of this world will not appeal to her.

Her taste buds change.

In following Jesus, and repenting, she is new.

Are you?

What servants of the Lord don't do

They don't stand around wondering who will help them, for THE Helper is inside them.

They don't think that the job that they know to do is too much to accomplish, for God will do through them what he asks of them.

They are tempted to dwell on tomorrow, next week, and next month, but they work, and dwell on today, and find plenty to occupy their time, for life is abundant, right now, today, for the redeemed.

They spend their energy on things of God, not in frivolity, and nothing is frivolous, except what is foolish, and the redeemed servant studies Proverbs to know what is foolish.

They don't rush to the front of the line at pot-luck dinners, or worry that their will be nothing for them when they do finally get to the food.

They don't beat themselves with a stick, but love themselves, but not to the exclusion of others.

They don't think that any "success" that they may have on this earth, in any arena, is due to their smarts, or will-power, or ability to do on their own, for they belong to another.

They don't boast of what they have done, or can do.

Do you?



Why the truly redeemed do not fret

Do you know anyone, who upon hearing that they are coming to visit, then you get excited?

(That is rare, I would think, because "company" is work....but think about it for a moment.)

What if the person was a great cleaner, and organizer, and was kind, and cheerful, and demanded that they pay all your needs for a week, and cooked for you, and was blind to your dirt, and never asked for anything in return, then do you think you would welcome them with open arms, and for that week, knowing all you needed to do was rest, then would you worry about anything?

Maybe you would.

Maybe you would wonder what they were telling anyone else about your home, and your ways.

Truthfully, there is no one on this earth we are told to trust (Psalm 118:8).

We are commanded to love people, not trust them.

Our trust belongs to God alone (Proverbs 3:5).

In knowing him, one knows perfect love, and perfect love gets rid of fear (I John 4:18).

Before knowing God, one can think that they know him, and can even sing about him.

A child does that, and there are many in churches who do that.

Few know God; many have fear, and walk the wide road (Matthew 7:13).

The few, who do know him, fear nothing.

In knowing God, they know that he is powerful, for he has washed them clean.

Their filthy self is no more.

That is powerful.

They know that if he can wash their filth, then he can do that in others.

The "others," who the redeemed carry in their hearts, are loved into the kingdom.

While tempted to do so, they don't worry about the souls of others, and wonder why it is taking "so long" for others to come into the kingdom. They just continue to love all others, and trust God.

They know that it took a while for them to see the light, and that it was not as simple as repeating a prayer, for that is not the way to know God. Jesus is the way. He preached repentance (Matt. 4:17).

They know that they are not heart-changers, God is.

They know that God is the miracle worker, they aren't.

They are simply yielded vessels who love.

They don't fret.

Do you?



What servants do

And he (Jesus) sat down, and called the twelve.
And he said to them, 
"If anyone would be first, 
he must be last of all,
and servant of all."
(Mark 9:35)

Jobs of servants:

Bed making

Dish washing

Diaper changing

Toilet (and everything else) scrubbing

Laundry, and folding, and putting away, and don't forget, ironing!
 
Weed pulling

Garden tending

Knocking down cobwebs

Sweeping, and vacuuming

Meal planning, and executing

Animal tending

Trash hauling, and trash can cleaning

Shower stall cleaning of nasty drains

You name it.

What ever needs to be done, whether enjoyable or not, attractive or not, a servant does it.

If you can hire your servants, terrific.

If you cannot hire it done, then don't think that your husband is a substitute for a hired hand.

The truly redeemed woman will be tempted to fuss, complain, and say, "You do it," to her husband.

For that matter, she will be tempted to not do it!

Temptation is not sin, and according to I Corinthians 10:13, the Lord (not only does not tempt his children - James 1:13), but he also does not allow the tempting that occurs to be so strong that his child will yield to it, but instead, the Spirit that is given upon repentance allows complete obedience.

Do you do servant jobs?

Or do you look for a way out?

Can you ever see Jesus saying, "You do it," or hiding, or shrinking back from a job needing done?

Dear soul, know that life in Christ, the Vine, is work, and joy, and peace, and abundance of all that.

The life with Christ is not a heavy load that cannot be done.

In fact, he does work through the soul, who has repented, and that soul sings as they go.

Even when it comes to stinking diapers, nasty drains, sticky floors, and on, and on it goes, and on, and on, and on goes the yielded servant knowing all the while that heaven waits, their final rest.

Till then, the servant of the Most High is fully aware that they are only passing through.

This earth is not their home.

They serve, and love, and give, for they know God.

In knowing him, they are not their own any longer.

Yielded and quiet, they serve. 

Do you?

 



Fame and fortune, or an obscure life?

Jesus commanded that we are to follow him.

His life was one of dedication to the will of the Father, and he did not promote himself in the process.

In all his ways, he pointed to, and lifted up, the Father.

He made the way for sinful souls to know the Father.

He sought no glory, but commanded that all people love God.

What is it that you seek?

Fame?

Fortune?

Prestige?

Popularity?

Do you want to be known, or do you make known the way to God?

The soul, who knows God, deeply desires that others know him.

That is the only desire of their heart.

If making God known is not the singular desire of your heart, then your heart is divided.

A heart, that is divided, or one that wants the world, and the Lord, will not stand in the end.

Choices are made.

Will you go after what your eyes see?

That was the temptation in the garden, and the one that continues today.

See it, and want it, and fail to trust that if God wants me to have it, then he'll bring it.

A soul either seeks God, or something else.

How is it that a soul becomes singular in desire?

Repentance.

Since souls are born with sin in them, the pull is to the world from the start.

Will I seek the spotlight in my marriage, with my friends, and in life in general?

Or, will I seek God with all my heart?

The apostle Paul knew of having it all, and having nothing, and whichever way God took him was the way that he lived, and he was joyful in it all, because for him to live was Christ, and to die, gain.

Is that your message to your world?

Is it, "I'm a vessel. Use me up, Lord. I want to go out with nothing left on the table. Here is all of me. I'm not fearful to serve, and submit, and give. Out of a love for you, I surrender all."

Or do you look to see who is noticing you, and who will give you the ovation, and serve you?

Is your life one of, "Look at me, and do for me" or "Look at him! I'll serve you!"

Are you willing to live in obscurity?

Obscurity is the condition of being unknown.

What do you make known?

Is it God's love, or your desires, and needs, and wants?

Does revenge, power, money, envy, or fame drive you, or does God's grace compel your actions?

The redeemed woman doesn't crave the spotlight.

She lets her light shine so that God will be glorified.

She points to him, and should others desire to put her on a pedestal, she rejects that, and proclaims the gospel message, that God is good, and that she is only following orders of the One she loves.

Jesus had 12 followers.

Are you content with 12 who know your name, and who just might betray you?

Do you follow Jesus for the sake of God, or for the sake of his goodies?

Examine your heart.

Repent.

Turn around.

Follow Jesus who will bring you to an agreement with God about your sin, and then grace will flood your soul, and in knowing God, you'll never be the same again.

You'll despise this world, and love people.

You'll no longer use others for your own pleasure-seeking selfish desires.

You'll die to self, serve others, and life in abundance will be given to you.

Choose which way you want to go.

Choose wisely, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

Time is fleeting.

The lost world waits for someone willing to live in obscurity and point them to the Savior.

Are you willing?








June 5, 2016

When is 2+2 ever 5?

Truth.

What is truth?

Can truth ever be known?

If so, where do we find it?

Is 2+2 ever 5?

A child, when asked, can say that 2+2 equals 5.

So can an adult.

Upon hearing the error, and untruth, what loving person, who knows the truth, would allow the error to go on unquestioned?

Would a loving mother allow the falsehood to not be challenged no matter the sincerity of the child?

What if the child stamped her foot and declared, "I know that 2+2=5!"

In knowing truth, do we sit on it?

In the mind of a child, foolishness abounds, and parents are to train children in truth.

Would you ever say, to the obstinate child, "Okay. If you want to believe that 2+2=5, then okay!"

Should a parent remain quiet perhaps?

In silence, do we give assent and agreement?

There were times when Jesus held his tongue, but he never lied.

He stood for truth, spoke the truth, and was, and is the Truth.

Do you know the truth that he spoke?

Or do you just think that you know it?

It takes study.

Upon hearing a soul speak untruth, do you hold your tongue?

That may be the wise thing to do.

It may also be necessary to speak, but always with grace, and even when spoken in grace, truth can be discarded, and not believed, for Jesus spoke it, and was rejected, and crucified for it.

In knowing God, one wants all to know him.

In wanting all to know God, truth must be spoken, lived, and people must be loved.

That is the heart of the gospel, and the heart that knows God loves people, endlessly.

Those in deception are loved.

Those who betray are loved.

Those who don't love you back will be loved.

Love knows no bounds, or boundaries.

Neither does truth.

The wise mother will continually tell the hard-headed child that 2+2=4— always.

And always truth will be spoken with grace, and authority, because in knowing truth, one speaks with certainty, and with a heart that desires that all know the truth, for truth sets people free.

Jesus came to set men free.

John 8:36 says that if the Son sets you free, then you are free indeed.

Now, ask yourself, from what does Jesus set us free?

Or another way to ask that is from what are we no longer bound if Jesus has set us free?

Or, what binds a soul, and is your soul bound, and if not, then from what are you free?

And is it possible for a freed soul to be bound again?

If so, what causes that?

Study, my friend! Know God. Seek him with all your heart!

"Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, 
a worker who has no need to be ashamed, 
rightly handling the word of truth. 
(II Timothy 2:15)



June 4, 2016

This and That

Perfection.

How does it appear in the saved?

Love.

When Jesus commanded it in the gospels, he was not kidding.

The command is followed by his giving of his life, and then in repentance, a soul is made perfect.

Born new.

Not of man, but of God.

Not of anything that the soul can do.

Perfection will not be found in anything any woman can do, or will not do.

Rules and lists do not exists for her. She only lives to give. She dies to self, and lays down her life.

Perfection is found in love.

In love, we are told, one is made perfect.

When a woman is in Christ, she is perfect.

In the ability, through the power of the Spirit, to always love, is one perfect before God.

That is how one has a presence with him in prayer.

When saved, a soul is given the mind of Christ, and the power by his Spirit to always love.

The saved woman loves.

Do you want to argue that she will love, but not always?

That describes the world.

Saved women do not live like the world, for they are set apart.

The world does not appeal to them; they long for heaven.

What is love?

It is patient, and kind, and ready to die, and will die, if needed, for anyone.

In fact, the soul, in dying to self daily, proves love, proves salvation, and regeneration.

Perfection is not anything at all that the saved woman will say is of her doing.

It is all Christ's doing for her, and in her.

Her hands, voice, strength, talents, money, yes, her very life is not hers any longer.

She belongs to another.

She knows in whom she believes, and she knows where the perfect love originates.

It is not of her, at all, for it is all of God in her.

His love is perfected in her, and while the saved woman may have a messy house at times, or flabby arms, or frazzled wits occasionally, she loves. When her hair is a fright, and her blouse has stains, and her nails are down to the quick, and her teeth need whitening, yet she is perfect, because she loves.

Perfection is not in eating perfect food, nor having a perfect weight, nor in keeping a perfect home.

Perfection is loving everyone, and the heart made new, loves— everyone.

In loving all, with no prejudice, one is perfect— this side of heaven.

In having the ability to lay down her life, and loving on others, she is perfect.

She is blessed beyond measure— now.

She has eternal life— now.

Her home is in heaven— now, and she is ready for it, anytime, she is ready.

This and that of this world will come and go.

Her mind stays on her Redeemer, the lover of her once sin-sick, and bound soul.

She is free.

Free to what, and for what?

Only to love.

To do as commanded: Love God totally, and the neighbor as herself.

The love of God in the saved woman remains, and flows like a river (Romans 5:5).

She is obedient, for she loves God (I John 5:1-5).

With all her heart, just as commanded, she loves her God. He has set her free. She sings.

Let all around her crumble, and let friends betray her, and let her lose all; she loves God.

Do you?

Do you love God with all your heart?

That is his command.

The loving God of this universe not only commands it, but gives the ability to do it upon repentance.

Hallelujah.

What a mighty God is he.

Repent is the message of the gospel.

Turn from hate, and agree with God about it.

Perfection waits in the form of love.



Are you swallowing the lie?

Satan is out, not only to tempt us to sin, but he wants to destroy, steal, and kill.

The lies of Satan can be boiled down to the following: "God is not love, and he does not love you."

If you turn to worry, then you don't really believe that God is love, and cares for you now, and later.

If you complain, then you believe that God has not brought an abundance of life to your soul.

If you envy, and want more, always more, then you believe that just knowing God is not enough.

If you really believe that God is love, then you don't worry, nor complain, nor are you envious.

The way to know God is in repenting of the sin of believing a lie that what is out there, in the world, is better than God's way, and that the world has something to offer in the way of a good life.

It doesn't. It can't. It won't.

The child of God will hear the lie, and will, at times, be tempted, but will not swallow the lie.

She may chew on the lie for a bit, but she will spit it out in the end.

Why is that the case?

God will not allow the temptation to be too strong for the truly believing woman.

That's what it says in I Corinthians 10:13.

Do you believe it?

That is what God will be constantly seeking to know about your heart.

You can say that you believe, but words are cheap (lip-service is what God calls it).

The lips can easily move, but the heart can, at the same time, be hard toward the truths of God.

The heart that believes exhibits behavior that talks, and walks in that belief.

Do you swallow lies, or do you obey God?

Do you tell Satan to move-on, or do his lies reside in your heart?

Do you trust God, or fret?

Do your hands serve out of an abundance of grace, or do you hoard your talent, money, and time?

Do you love, or are your feet stymied in a quagmire of prejudice, and conditional love, and do they stay put, not seeking out the ones in the ditch, and the lonely, and the poor?

We cannot serve two masters.

Choose this day whom you will serve.

Will it be Satan and his lies, or God and truth?

The God who made heaven and earth is good, and he is love, and to know him, follow Jesus.

Jesus says, "Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand," (Matthew 4:17)..




June 3, 2016

Onward, Christian soldier, but where ya going?

Following in the footsteps of Jesus, one will end up in the presence of God.

In the presence of God, one is never the same ever again.

To say that one follows Christ, or is a Christian, is for the moment, simply lip-service.

A two-year-old can repeat a prayer, and say they are a Christian, as can a 50-year-old.

Words are easy.

The actions that come after the lip-service prove a life dedicated to God.

Consistent actions prove repentance.

The repentant are given the mind of Christ, and are made new, and are changed.

Jesus did not say to follow him just to be the lead Pied Piper, and get the glory for that.

His followers end up repenting and knowing God.

That is always his goal in the command to follow him.

It is not so that he can say someday, "Look at all my followers!"

He pointed the way to God, and nothing more.

His followers, who remain with him, eventually say the same thing.

Salvation is not about a relationship with the Son, but with God.

We are to worship God with all the heart, not the Son.

Where are you going?

Is it to serve someone at all times?

In all that you do is service the aim?

Or is it vain-glory?

Do you seek the admiration of anyone?

Or do you want others to know the God of all creation?

That is the end of mankind.

Where are you going as you journey to the end of your life?

Are you loving?

If you are truly a Christ-follower, then you are obeying his commands, and you will repent, and you will love, and you will be perfect, for that is his command.

Where will you steps take you today?

Whom are you worshiping?

As did Jesus, with your life, do you point the way to God?

June 1, 2016

What God commands

Mothers, when you give your child a command, what do you expect to happen?

Obedience?

What if little Joey, or Susie, were to say, "I'm just not there yet, Mommy, but when I can get to it, and can do what you tell me to do, then I will. Plus, I don't feel like it. I'd rather play."

Would any loving mother give little Joey, or Susie, a command that was impossible to do?

Maybe so, but not intentionally.

God never requires of his child what she cannot do, plus he gives her the ability to obey.

The flesh is weak in the redeemed, but the Spirit always causes the redeemed to stand, and obey.

If you are a child of God, then you will obey him.

Until you are a child of God, you are a follower of Jesus.

You will be "doing" what you can, and "trying" to do as God commands, and you will be successful some of the time, and failing other times.

And it will be "you" doing what you do, for if it were the Spirit doing it, then obedience would occur.

When you repent (turn from sin), then you are home, and in God's hands, and you are his.

His Spirit resides in the repentant causing life to flow, and growth in love to always be present.

A heart that is undivided is an obedient heart.

How so?

The repentant heart is given a new heart, and the new heart is no longer in the possession of a mere human, but in the possession of God.

God does in, and through, the repentant what they cannot do, and could not do, apart from him.

The life attached to the Vine only produces good fruit (Matthew 7:17).

As it abides, and it can only abide, and it can only walk on the narrow road, it glorifies God.

That soul does not say that it loves the world, and it does not talk like the world, nor think like it.

Why?

That soul has the mind of Christ (I Corinthians 2:16).

That soul has died to self (repented), and now is alive only to Christ (Galatians 2:20).

All along the way of "following Jesus" is the option to not follow. We see that is what occurred in the lives of many in Scripture. Some followed, for a while, and then didn't. The disciples followed all the way to the upper room, and then they were filled (totally) never to be the same ever again.

They were obedient, and loved not their lives even as they were lead to their execution.

For them, to live was Christ, and to die was gain (Philippians 1:21).

For them, to live did not mean any acquisition of power or wealth.

Those things did not drive them.

Love for God drives the redeemed, and they are obedient (I John 5:3).

So when the redeemed read that they are to do "whatever" it is as a saved soul, then they do it.

Until then, they are like little Joey, or Susie, and will get to it when they can.

Disobedience brings death.

It kills joy, strength, and blessedness.

"Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matthew 4:17) was, and is, the message preached by Jesus throughout his ministry, until his death, and it is the gospel message right now.

It is the only way to know God.

It brings freedom.

It brings a freedom from "trying."

Freedom sin (death, and destruction) is what Jesus came to bring (John 8:36).

Are you free?

Are you free to do as God commands?

Are you free to die?

That is what God commands.

If you are not free (and therefore obedient), then when will you get to it?

Only when one repents can they get to it.

What would, or do, you say to your child if they were (or are) not instantly obedient?

Would you not wonder if they loved you?

Would you consider what their rebellion says about their heart's desire?

What does it say about your heart's desire when you continue to hate, lust, and refuse to submit?

We choose what we do.

God says to choose THIS day whom you will serve, and the truly redeemed choose wisely always.

The Spirit in them causes them to do as commanded (I Corinthians 10:13).

Does that sound like no choice is involved?

Yep.

Unless you give, and take back, and give, and take back, and what is that called?

What type of commitment is that?

Do you decide to follow, and then don't, and then decide to follow, and then stop?

What does God say about a heart that is neither hot, nor cold?

The heart that has been given to God, and taken by him, no longer belongs to a mere human.

Repentance does that.

The repentant heart is in God's hands, protected, and preserved until its final day on earth.

That woman is free from worry, and free from hate, and free to love; simply obedient and happy.

The repentant, redeemed soul is free from this world, and its cares, and vain-glory.

What God commands you to do, do you do it?

If not, consider why not.

Is obedience something that we grow into?

Do we just want to take our time about it?

Do you allow your little Joey, or Susie, to grow into their obedience?

Do you say, "Take your time about it! Get back to me when you want. No big deal."

The growth talked about in Scripture is not a growth to keep sinning until one decides to obey.

Don't be fooled into thinking that disobedience (and there is no big or little rebellion) is something to be tinkered with when it comes to God's commands.

He says to love him with all your heart.

Do you?

Can you?

How does one do that?

Only in repentance.

Only in being filled, after turning from how one willfully walks, is one then consumed.

To be consumed is to leave no room for anything but God's love.

God's love spills out and onto others (Romans 5:5).

Follow Jesus, and do as he commands.

He commands repentance.

When you repent, then you can do as God commands; he guarantees it.