Good morning dear ones,
Another beautiful Autumn day awaits. I do pray that you are blessed with every spiritual blessing as you walk with your hand in the Lords.
How will we be able to love the Lord God with all our souls? This weekend I kept thinking about Colossians 3:1-2. I realize that due to many conditions in our lives that can take up our full attention, we need a go~to word from the Lord. His Spirit will teach us how. "If then you have been raised with Christ [to a new life, thus sharing His resurrection from the dead], aim at and seek the [rich, eternal treasures] that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. And set your minds and keep them set on what is above (the higher things), not on the things that are on the earth."
Oh, I want this so much! Not that we would be walking around with our heads in the clouds, ignorant of what is going on in this world, but that we would be found at the task He calls us to. Altogether His, hands extended with the grace we have been given. Reaching out to a lost and thirsty world with the cup of hope we have drank from. Always looking ahead to His appearing.
So, how do we live this way? I want to know. I want to put the application of God's Word to the path I walk. That this would not just be talk. The first thing I think of is how so many are seeking happiness in every way but up. Matthew 6 starting with verse 19-21 talks about storing up treasures on earth..."Do not gather and heap up and store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust and worm consume and destroy, and where thieves break through and steal. But gather and heap up and store for yourselves treasures in heaven..." Verse 21 says, "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
I love Paul's prayer in Philippians 1:9-11. He prays that our love may abound more and more; a greater depth displayed. "So that you may surely learn to sense what is vital, and approve and prize what is excellent and of real value [recognizing the highest and the best, and distinguishing the moral differences], and that you may be untainted and pure and unerring and blameless [so that with hearts sincere and certain and unsullied, you may approach] the day of Christ [not stumbling nor causing others to stumble]."
To me this is the true picture of an assured Believer in Christ. And, remember, Paul is writing this from prison! He knows why he is there. For the sake of the Gospel. I for one, am not perfect! But, I pray that my life would reflect Jesus Christ and that as my mind is captured by His love so will my soul be. Separated from the things of the world that used to look so delicious. I desire to feed my spirit as I strive to love God. That my flesh would take the back seat, my emotions led by Holy Spirit to show a picture of love to those I meet. Oh, how I need Jesus!
My prayer for you and I today is in agreement with Paul. Verse 11 says, "May you abound in and be filled with the fruits of righteousness (of right standing with God and right doing) which come through Jesus Christ (the Anointed One), to the honor and praise of God [that His glory may be both manifested and recognized]." Can you say, "Amen?"
Pause and think of these things. These treasures of truth have been freely given as you walk the path of His choosing. He is a good and loving Father and desires to bountifully supply all that you need for this journey. The outcome, eternity! Long to see His face. Think on things that are above. Be free from the entanglements of the world to better serve others and always give God the glory for the great things He has done. In the sweet name of Jesus, amen.
Abundance is...treasures of the soul
Good morning everyone,
What a beautiful morning we have here in Darby, Montana! Fresh snow on the mountains, a brilliant sunrise and hope for today.
With all that we have shared about loving God with all our minds I am sure we have only scratched the surface. Like thinking beyond what I see this early morning to the reasons behind all of God's wonders. The Who is easy. The hows and whys are much deeper. This morning I want to bring His Word into the now of our lives. Each of us have a different set of circumstances but, I hope to show you a bit of wisdom that makes us all the same. Ready?
Romans 8:16 says, "The Spirit Himself [thus] testifies together with our own spirit, [assuring us] that we are children of God." Assured!
Psalms 107:2 says, "Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He has delivered from the hand of the adversary." Delivered!
Colossians 1:13-14 says, "[The Father] has delivered and drawn us to Himself out of the control and the dominion of darkness and has transferred us into the kindom of the Son of His love, in Whom we have our redemption through His blood, [which means] the forgiveness of our sins." Redeemed!
Ephesians 2:8 says, "For it is by free grace (God's unmeritied favor) that you are saved (delivered from judgment and made partakers of Christ's salvation) through [your] faith, and this [salvation] is not of yourselves [of your own doing, it came not through your own striving], but it is the gift of God." Grace!
Romans 5:1 says, "Therefore, since we are justified (acquitted, declared righteous, and given a right standing with God) through faith, let us [grasp the fact that we] have [the peace of reconciliation to hold and to enjoy] peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One)." Justified!
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spirtual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!" Reborn!
So, you see a picture of who you are because of Who He Is! This list is small. Search out His Word for more treasures. Like watching the sunrise, the changes of colors, the glistening of snow and rain...so will you find that you too can worship God in all the beauty He has bestowed on your soul. All creation worships Him! He did it all because of His great love for you. He did it all because He could!
Do you want more of God? He wants more of you too. Get to know Him through His precious, unchangeable Word. See His character of love through the gift of His Son. You can know the Lord Jesus intimately as you take Him with you along in your day to day.
I will return on Monday, if God wills. Take care and stand courageous. The grace, spiritual favor and blessing of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.
Abundance is...Knowing Him is knowing who I am in Him.
This is another day for snow. I love how it covers the dry, brown places from summer. My heart is joyful today for nearly the same reason. The dry, brown places in the depths of my heart are covered and made new; white as snow as I press on to know the Lord, my Redeemer.
Reading this morning in Nehemiah I came across more insight about my mind. If you haven't read this wonderful, courageous story you must! God put on Nehemiah's heart the great desire to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. They had been burnt and broken down and left to ruin with time. God had another plan for His beloved city. He uses Nehemiah to take on the task, along with many others. Wouldn't you know it though there come those who are outraged at this project. True enemies of God's purpose.
Like our minds, we are in the rebuilding process due to hurts from our childhood. The stories that others have written and the boxes they want us to live within. Finding God's purposes will set us free and healed.
So, the people are working long hard hours. Due to the attacks of the enemy on the project, they have to divide the work with those who would take a stand with swords, spears and bows. They took turns protecting what was being accomplished. Could they too have had thoughts to give up? What was on their minds?
God frustrates the purposes of the enemy, so the builders are able to return to their work on the wall. Then, Nehemiah 4:14 says, "I looked [them over] and rose up and said to the nobles and officials and the other people, Do not be afraid of the enemy; [earnestly] remember the Lord and imprint Him [on your minds], great and terrible, and [take from Him courage to] fight for your brethren, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes."
The times when I am afraid and my thoughts are imprinting the work of the enemy, he seems even nearer. Those pesky, irritating thoughts and worries over my loved ones make me weak. I need to cling to the Lord, imprint Him on my mind and return to the wall! Are you with me? Instead of listening to the ridicule, the remarks that cause doubt that God does have a good plan, I have to take up the full armor of God and pray in the Spirit and with my understanding. I have to raise up a standard of praise as I keep my hands busy.
The laboring sometimes seems endless doesn't it? Children taking care of aging parents. A parent praying for the child who has run away to destruction. A church standing in the gap for a community. People rising up to make a difference in a wounded nation. Our God will fight for us!
Say it again! Our God will fight for us! Whether it is a battle of the mind or for another person. A business struggling to meet requirements or the loss of home. There is an enemy taunting us to give up. He never seems to tire of heckling and poking us. But, our God will fight for us.
As you tend to the work of repairing the walls of your mind by reading The Holy Bible or sitting quietly in His presence, know this, He is for you and not against you. He has plans to keep you now through eternity. He won't let go!
Take your thoughts today and train them to come under the command of Truth. Eat of His mercy like manna this morning. Rejoice in His faithfulness. Dance without restraint as an offering of thanksgiving. Then drink of Living Water, be refreshed. And, listen for the sound of the trumpet! It won't be long from now.
There is so much application as we read this book of Nehemiah. Continue on for more insight. Have a great day. Be expectant as you watch for the Lord's direction and keep on building. God bless you and we will return soon.
Abundance is...more to come!
Good morning brothers and sisters,
Have you ever woke in the night with troubling thoughts? It figures that the enemy didn't like what I discovered yesterday in God's Word. So, he puts up a fuss when I am the weakest, in the night. Well, it was due to a critical comment towards me the day before that I internalized and even analyzed. Not good! Obviously, I took those negative thoughts with me to bed. Another lesson learned.
Yes, I am still talking about the mind God has given us and how we can love Him with all our minds. I for one want to know. Last night I did take those unwarrented, negative thoughts to the throne of grace. I praised the Lord for keeping me. I thanked Him for teaching me how to take what another person says and bring it into the light of Truth. And if there was any substance in what they said that I will learn from that. Soon, I went back to sleep. Again this morning I sat quietly in prayer before the sun came over the tops of the mountains. The ache isn't so bad now. Grateful for the Lord's mercies that are new every morning!
So, what do we do? Others have their opinions that may be contrary to ours. Sure, but do their words continue to wound us or do we take the truth parts and learn from them gratefully. I think that as long as I am standing on God's Word, my mind will know perfect peace. His Word is my manual for everything. When I need wisdom to discern the truth from a lie, I can go to my manuel, the Bible.
God created our minds to worship Him. To engage in the relationships He brings our way with the same love that He loves us with. Not always easy. It is hard not to get defensive or try to justify in the face of insults. Jesus did though. Those flaming missiles that Ephesians 6:16 talks about are quenched! "Lift up over all the [covering] shield of saving faith, upon which you can quench all the flaming missiles of the wicked [one]." Remembering too that we wear the helmet of salvation that covers our minds!
We have been given these tools, found in The Word of God, to go to battle with. The enemy hates that we know this! Don't be surprised by more trouble. What I am learning is to be quiet before the Lord bringing all that matters to me, then resting that He will handle the ugly words, unkindness, misunderstanding. The book of James tells us about our tongues. Read it. I used to try to ignore the things I read there because they pointed directly to me, personally. Later, I realized the whole book is about Faith and how to live it out in every area of my life. Give it a chance. I am.
Then, we can together claim Psalm 28:7..."The Lord is my Strength and my [inpenetrable] Shield; my heart trust in, relies on, and confidently leans on Him, and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song will I praise Him." See how closely our heart and mind are linked together. Again, we are called to love God with ALL our heart, soul, mind and strength. Selah, pause and think about this.
My mind is learning truth from God's love letter everyday. I have the armor of God on and stand in Righteousness. So this is why I can rejoice. We can rejoice and sing songs of praise to Him!
Father thank you for being with us even in the night hours. Teach us Your ways. We wait and hope in You. Make our hearts and minds to be brave and stand in the Truth. Lead us on a plain path and clearly show us the enemies hiding places. Make us wise as we continue to take up the Shield of Faith. We bless You in the Holy name of Jesus, amen.
Abundance is...no more games!
Well, yesterdays sunshine is hiding behind the gray today. A storm is predicted to come through. Do I feel anxious about this? I might have in the past, but my heart and mind are in peace today. Praise the Lord! He has made me glad!
Since so many are reading from different locations on the globe I can assume there are as many different and varied circumstances God's people are in. I have been reading about the apostle Paul. He wrote from prison on more than one occasion. How could he do this? I believe he could because of his deep love of God and his love for Christ Who died for him. He had an understanding of who he was in the eyes of the Father in heaven. Jesus was his tried and true strength. Holy Spirit filled him and was at work in his life bringing him to worship...even in a dungeon.
I had a thought on my mind this morning. A question really. So, how do we love God with all our mind? Do you know? We have talked about the importance of meditating on God's Word. How to bring thoughts captive. Always coming into His presence with thanksgiving. And, trusting Him with the outcome of all our prayers.
I am draw to the book of Philippians. Here is Paul shackled to a wall, in a filty, tight, smelly place with other prisoners and yet, he speaks of joy! His focus apparently is on Jesus even when his ankles are swollen and raw from chains and his belly is empty. Obviously someone brought him parchment and a writing impliment. His only light was probably a tiny lantern or pot of oil with a wick. I am speculating but, this boggles my mind at how he shares his faith. It is genuine.
Philippians 1:6 says, "And I am convinced and sure of this very thing, that He Who began a good work in you will continue until the day of Jesus Christ [right up to the time of His return], developing [that good work] and perfecting and bringing it to full completion in you." Paul was thinking clearly. He wasn't fantasizing with some unreality. He really believed this!
That is how we can love God with all our minds. Know His heart and believe: rely on, trust in and adhere, cling to it. If you believe that there is something to fear around every corner then you will find it just so. If you believe that Jesus walks every step with you then you will have no fear. Knowing Who you serve makes a huge difference doesn't it?
There are some16 different places in this book where Paul uses the word joy. When I remember that he is in prison, I am ashamed for my grumbling and complaining. I have so many blessings today. There is nothing I need that God has not provided. My soul is full of His love and goodness. Where my mind takes me is where I will live from. If I am living loved, I will know the perfect peace of mind that God speaks of.
Paul speaks from a place of understanding and wisdom. He has learned to apply the Truth of Jesus Christ to his personal life. That is why his testimony is so effective! Chapter 2:13-14 says..."[Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight. Do all things without grumbling and faultfinding and complaining [against God] and questioning and doubting [among yourselves]."
What a mouthful! I have complained at times that God is too slow, and doubted that He even listens. Sometimes, I have shared that with others, which plants seed of doubt in their minds if they are weaker christians. Ouch! Again, it is where the mind travels and what it mulls over, allowing the devil a foothold. Be aware.
Paul says in Chapter 3:1..."For the rest, my brethren, delight yourselves in the Lord and continue to rejoice that you are in Him..." Amen! This will keep our mind agreeable to His will! He goes on to say in verse 8..."Yes, furthermore, I count everything as loss compared to the possession of the priceless privilege (the overwhelming preciousness, the surpassing worth, and supreme advantage) of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord and of progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him [of perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more fulyl and clearly]. For His sake I have lost everything and consider it all to be mere rubbish (refuse, dregs), in order that I may win (gain) Christ (the Anointed One)." This goes on.
I know many of you have experienced loss with the onslaughts of nature, and by the hands of evil men. I think you may understand what it is to be imprisoned for your faith. You, like Paul, can agree here. What an honor to loose for the sake of Christ. Terrible, yet a place of joy unspeakable. I want to train my mind to worship God in any situation, come what may. I know nothing takes the place of experience. I don't want to suffer, if I am honest. But, I know that my mind, as long as it is stayed on the Lord, I will be kept in peace. The kind that passes all understanding.
I know today is rather long. Not one word that I write is prepared or outlined. It never is. I trust that as Holy Spirit leads me that He is leading you too. We gain everything when we leave it to Him, our great teacher. God's Word is never wasted. Praise the Lord! Until we meet again, I pray that your mind is focused on Him and you are anticipating that great day when we will see Him face to face!
Abundance is...Loving God with all my mind.