In Light of Eternity

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Psalm 121

I will lift up my eyes to the hills [of Jerusalem]—
From where shall my help come?
 My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

Jesus emptied Himself for us.

Yet, we keep trying to get more. More stuff, more stuff, more stuff…

When we take our focus off the world, then we can truly put our focus on Him, the Good Shepard, and then we shall not want, because He supplies all our needs, according to His riches and glories.

Desire more of Him. Shift your focus.

Be Free & Stay Free 

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Does God Know You?

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There are many who claim they know God. Jesus, Himself, said in Matthew 7  Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day [when I judge them], ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, and driven out demons in Your name, and done many miracles in Your name?’  And then I will declare to them publicly, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me [you are banished from My presence], you who act wickedly [disregarding My commands].’

How do you know if you love Him? Jesus saidIf anyone [really] loves Me, he will keep My word (teaching); and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our dwelling place with him.  One who does not [really] love Me does not keep My words. And the word (teaching) which you hear is not Mine, but is the Father’s who sent Me.”

We are known by love. Do you love? Does His heart beat in you? Do you care for the widows and the orphans?  Do you love even when they hate you? Can you lay yourself down for the sake of the Gospel? Are you burdened for souls? When you look at people, do you see them as souls, someone Jesus thought worthy of dying for? Are you more concerned about being right, rather than loving someone? With all the knowledge we think we have, if we do not have love, we have NOTHING.

I ask you, does God know you?

But if anyone loves God [with awe-filled reverence, obedience and gratitude], he is known by Him [as His very own and is greatly loved]. 1 Corinthians 8:3

I plead with you, do nothing else until you know God knows you and then Go and introduce Him to others through your love. Let every good word and deed point others to Him, the Christ in you.

Be Free & Stay Free

For such a time as this

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There is a reason we do not die and immediately go to Heaven when we accept Christ. There is a reason why we, as Believers, are here on this earth, in all this craziness. There is a reason why you have been born into the family you have been born into, why you live where you live, and why you work where you work. It is no accident.

He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their lands and territories.   Acts 17:26

You are exactly where you are suppose to be. He has created you to be where you are, at this time in history, for a reason.

Too often, we think we can not answer His call because we do not have a large platform, or we aren’t eloquent speakers, or we are too poor, or we have a past…

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Can I remind you of two people who also had a past and they were effective in Evangelism because of their testimony. They did not travel the world (although their testimony still speaks to us over 2000 years later),  they did not speak to crowds of thousands, they had no tax exempt status ministry, they didn’t build a mega-church…

You can read about this man by clicking here. (pay attention to vs. 17-19) WOW! What a testimony! The guy had so many demons in him they weren’t even named individually. This guy was so possessed the whole town was afraid of him. But, there was One who spoke to him, only One who set him free of the tormenting demons, and put him back into a right mind; Jesus.

The “former” demoniac was so grateful, he begged Jesus to let him go with Him. But, what did Jesus say? He told him to stay right there and tell everyone what the Lord has done for him. Someone needed to hear his testimony.

Or how about this woman, click here. Here is a woman with a promiscuous past. In and out of marriages, living with a man who wasn’t even her husband, she was the talk of the town. Maybe you know someone like her? Or maybe you were someone like her?

Jesus spoke right to her heart, He went right to the root, healed her, delivered her, and revealed Himself to her. Now, you tell me this woman didn’t have a life changing encounter with God! What did she do? She went and told everyone what the Lord has done for her. There was no more shame or condemnation, the woman was finally free from her past. Because of this woman’s boldness and desire to share what the Lord has done for her, many more were saved. Someone needed to hear her testimony.

Let’s go back to the first scripture I quoted from Acts, surely if God placed you where you are, for this time, then there is a ministry purpose there for you. Does it mean that every time you open your mouth people are going to get saved? Does it mean that no one will ever try to throw your past back in your face?  Nope.

You are here for a time such as this. If it were not so then Jesus would not have said “GO! Preach the Gospel to everyone.”

Someone needs to hear your testimony.

Go ye! Who is ye? Ye is you and me.

These are dark days, my friend. There will be times when you speak His truth you will face ridicule, persecution, and you will even lose friends and family. I want you to remember two things.

  1. You are never alone. He is always with you. You have the power of His Holy Spirit to be His witness.
  2. Even if everyone rejects you, His Word never returns void.

So, instead of hitting that snooze button, hop out of bed and be excited for the divine appointments you will have to share His Good News. Believe me, it is a matter of life and death.

I leave you with this final word from 2 Timothy 4:2-5

…preach the word [as an official messenger]; be ready when the time is right and even when it is not [keep your sense of urgency, whether the opportunity seems favorable or unfavorable, whether convenient or inconvenient, whether welcome or unwelcome]; correct [those who err in doctrine or behavior], warn [those who sin], exhort and encourage [those who are growing toward spiritual maturity], with inexhaustible patience and [faithful] teaching.  For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine and accurate instruction [that challenges them with God’s truth]; but wanting to have their ears tickled [with something pleasing], they will accumulate for themselves [many] teachers [one after another, chosen] to satisfy their own desires and to support the errors they hold,  and will turn their ears away from the truth and will wander off into myths and man-made fictions [and will accept the unacceptable]. But as for you, be clear-headed in every situation [stay calm and cool and steady], endure every hardship [without flinching], do the work of an evangelist, fulfill [the duties of] your ministry.

And one more reminder from Jesus Himself.

Matthew 28:19-20:

 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations [help the people to learn of Me, believe in Me, and obey My words], baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always [remaining with you perpetually—regardless of circumstance, and on every occasion], even to the end of the age.”

Now go!

Be Free & Stay Free 

 

The Kiss of Judas

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Why do we think it so strange when the people we are closest to turn their backs on us? We are living in a time where things are NOT gray, they are black and white, light and dark, the lines are not blurred. We are in a time when people call good evil and evil good. Why do we find this strange when the Bible tells us this is going to happen?

I am writing this post because my heart is heavy and feeling broken. I wont go into details, but suffice it to say, because of the truth of Gods word, I am losing people that were once so close to me. I am no way claiming to be perfect or super spiritual, but I do know Gods word and there are some thing that are non-negotiable. Does this mean I love them less? No! But, listen to me, no matter who it is that is challenging your belief and faith in Christ, you must NOT waiver!

Lately, the persecution is stepping up it’s game. To believe in the word of God you are given a label, and it is not a nice label. You can try to be as loving as possible and explain and defend yourself until you are blue in the face, but the truth is… the time has come to separate the sheep from the goats.

Look, I want to be real with you. This is not always easy, because it is coming from people we love and care for. We may struggle and hem haw around because we do not want to “offend” them or “hurt their feelings,” but I have to tell you, there is something much more at stake here.

We cannot walk around on our tip toes, because if you are a follower of Christ, then you must learn to see as He sees. He did not love people unto their grave and death because He didn’t want to hurt their feelings. He didn’t tip toe around and sugar coat things because He was afraid they would reject Him. He met them where they were (His goodness), ministered to them, and then told them to go and sin no more. He was not afraid to call it out, because He didn’t look at the temporal, He looked at the eternal.

We must look beyond the flesh, beyond the person, and recognize it for what it is. It is an attack from the enemy. Do NOT take it personal! The person through who the attack comes from is being deceived. Have pity on them, have compassion, but do not waiver, stand on the truth!

Think about Judas; he walked with Jesus. He was in the inner circle. He heard the Word through God Himself. He sat at the table with Him. But, he was deceived and betrayed the very One Who held eternal life in His hand. He betrayed the very One Who laid His life down for us.

Why?

Luke 22:2-4 says: The chief priests and the scribes were looking for a way to put Him to death; for they were afraid of the people [who listened devotedly to His teaching, and who respected His spiritual wisdom]. Then Satan entered Judas, the one called Iscariot, who was one of the twelve [disciples].  And he went away and discussed with the chief priests and officers how he might betray Him and hand Him over to them.

The devil saw the weak link and took advantage of it.

The enemy will come at us through the people we love. We think because we are Christian things should be easy. We think if we love someone enough they will see the truth.

But…

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I like how the Amplified says it: Do not think that I have come to bring peace on the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword [of division between belief and unbelief].  For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;  and a man’s enemies will be the members of his [own] household [when one believes and another does not].

His Word is offensive to those who do not believe. Because His Word speaks truth and it convicts of sin. Not to torment, but to show a better way, to lead to repentance and salvation. But, for those who are comfortable in their sin, they will reject the truth. The world will tolerate you as a Christian as long as you keep silent. But, we are NOT called to be silent. We are called to be the salt and the light. When someone is in darkness, the light will blind them; they will either adjust their vision to the light, or they will reject the light.

What I am trying to say, is do not be afraid, do not back down. Do NOT beat people up with the Bible, but DO continue to speak the truth. Do NOT back down or sugar coat the truth. Their eternity is far more important than your feelings and what they think about you.

Stay close to Him, my friends. The day is coming to an end. His return is close. Pray for them and give them to God. You are only responsible to speak the truth, not for if they receive it or not. And for pete’s sake, do NOT let the enemy wreak havoc in your mind with accusations of your past, do NOT let him tell you you are disqualified! You are called and chosen. Now GO!

When you are being “labeled,” and when you are being accused, hold fast, even if the accusation is coming from someone as close as Judas.

Be Free & Stay Free

 

That Was Then, This Is Now

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It is true, there is not one person who ever lived who was perfect, except Jesus. Even though He was tempted in every way we are tempted, He did not sin.

So, the good news is… because He was without sin and died and rose again for us, having paid the penalty for our sins, He reconciled us to the Father.

When you are in Christ, there is no condemnation. As far as the east is from the west He separated us from our sins.

Sometimes the enemy wants to remind us of our past. He will take the voice of those closest to us and sometimes he will even speak in our own voice. By listening to this condemning voice we can be hindered and weighed down with guilt and shame. We may even start to believe we are not worthy of Gods great love and forgiveness towards us.

Remember this, Gods love for us is greater than any sin we have committed. Once we have confessed and repented He is faithful and true to forgive. He is not waiting for you to mess up so He can throw it back in your face again. He has something so much greater for you and it is His desire you let go of the past and trust and believe Him.

Who you were is not who you are.

Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life]. 2 Corinthians 5:17

So the next time the accuser comes knocking on your door, do not even bother answering it. When those voices rise up in your ear and your mind, shut them off. Take control of your thoughts and remind yourself…

That was then, this is now.

You have a bright eternal future before you. Refuse to let it be stolen from you by the lying deceiver. God is greater!

Be Free & Stay Free