Too Many To Count!

“After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.” (Revelation 7:9 NIV)

Contrary to the belief of some, those who believe that only 144,000 will make it into heaven, we see in this verse–based upon John’s vision–a great multitude–too many to count–from every nation, tribe, people, and language–standing before the throne of God and the Lamb. How awesome is that? The “remnant” is so many we can’t be counted!

What’s more important to understand about this particular verse is--those standing before the throne of God–were not there because of their religious affiliation to any specific denomination. They were not there because of their race, ethnic origin, geographic location, or economic status or educational background. No–they made it to the place of their desire because of their obedience to God and acceptance of His Son and the work on the cross. How simple is that?

So basically what this means is there should be no division between people earth on earth because there will be no segregation of those standing before God in heaven. All Believers–followers of Jesus Christ–should be able to come together in fellowship and not see anything other than the glory of God surrounding us. If we ever get the “in-fighting” stopped, thinking that one religious group is superior to another, then we’ll be able to do what God has asked us to do, and when we stand before Him, we won’t notice anything about anyone else other than–they made it!

What are we waiting for? His Hand to reach down and pull us together or spank us for disobedience? If we believe The Word of God, have an intimate Relationship with Him, then we should be able to do what He told us to do–go into all the world, preaching the Gospel and accepting all into the fold. If we can’t accept all into the fold of Believers, then there really is no need for us to go into all the world because in the world–there are all types of people!

There are people of mixed ethnicity, different shades of black, red, brown, white; there are different cultures with different traditions and different celebrations and different ideas and thoughts, but if all the differences are set aside to believe in the Creator God, God the Son, and Holy Spirit—what then is the problem?

Since we create biases based upon racial differences, we need to stop thinking about ethnicity and think the human race. That is the only race that concerns God and it should be the only race of people concerning us. If we cannot treat all human beings well, we will never see the end result in heaven, but even so–there will be so many of us there--too many to count–and it is not His desire that any should be left out of that number.

Never Failing Water!

“The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.” (Isaiah 58:11 NIV)

The essence of life for human beings is found in having access to water–clean, refreshing water–to nourish our bodies and the land. Without water, very simply–we dry up and die. Trying to live without God’s guidance is like living without water–eventually, people dry up from bitterness and frustration and die spiritually, which is the first step in the physical death. Where the spirit of the Lord is absent–there can be no life–because there is nothing to nourish the soul.

However, when we do things the way He tells us to do them--fasting, living, sharing, teaching, and loving–He will always guide us, satisfy our needs, strengthen us and we–like a well-watered garden–will blossom and grow, providing all the nourishment needed and then like a spring, we’ll be able to provide for others and the provisions will never end.

But if we’re going to be like a spring whose water never fails–because of its source of water–usually unseen, we must be careful in the distribution of our resources so they will be a constant supply. Water is both life-giving and life-taking. Too much at any given time when the ground won’t absorb results in floods and often the loss of life. Even in our giving and sharing with others, sometimes we can do too much for others without allowing them the opportunity to learn to do for self and we create a society of people who are constant drains on resources and when they are used up, they are gone and the people die. When “all” are contributing to the wellspring of provisions, the provisions will last and be a constant source to satisfy needs.

We must remember, when we do for others as God leads us to do, we become a resource, the conduit by which we are able to help others--not the source because God is the source –our supplier, and since He is the source–the never-ending, constant in our lives, we can always tap into the source–seeking wisdom–in becoming a resource for others.

Lord Jesus, help us to understand how You want us to be a spring whose waters never fail in demonstrating to others Your love. Provide us with wisdom from on high so we will do all things to Your glory in teaching others to follow You and seek You in times of need. Thank You for allowing us be resources to Your glory so we can convince others of the need to see You as the source of all we will ever need.

Saved From Enemies!

“I called to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and have been saved from my enemies.” (2 Samuel 22:4 NIV)

When people have been saved from disasters and they know The Lord, they understand God’s saving grace in situations beyond their control. David knew The Lord and knew that it was The Lord who had saved him from Saul’s relentless pursuit to kill him.

Let’s step back for a second review the relationship between David and Saul. It was David who struck Goliath with a stone from his slingshot. It was David who was able to soothe Saul with his music ability. It was David who was loyal to Saul beyond measure and refused to kill him, even though he had a chance when Saul sought to kill David out of jealousy. The real issue here with Saul was his jealousy, which reigned over logic in his head and led to his destruction. Jealousy–the monstrous emotion resulting from insecurities that blinds people from seeing reality and is a tool of the enemy–Satan.

When Samuel anointed David as the next king over Israel–predictively–David was put on the road to notoriety and acclaim. He was a hero to the people, but a pain to Saul because the people exalted David–because of his military success over Saul, who was king.

How can someone who claims to love a person become their enemy? When a person is influenced by demonic influence, love won’t stand a chance if the person who is influenced would rather express their desire to hold onto negativity.

Instead of taking the opportunities to kill Saul and become King as prophesied, David ran, formed his own armies, still fighting on the side of Saul’s reign, but keeping far away from him. Throughout Saul’s pursuit of David, David’s faith in God did not fail and he knew he would be saved. When Saul was killed, David sang praises unto The Lord. In fact, during the pursuit, David wrote and sang many songs and we have access to some of them in the Psalms.

Now, the bigger question for us today is, when we are pursued by an enemy, do we sing praises unto our God or do we cringe in fear and hopelessness? Do we sing when we know we have been delivered and saved by that enemy that influences our fear and makes us feel abandoned?

I’ve learned to sing God’s praises, no matter what is happening in my life. I may take a moment to be sad, but I straighten my back, hold up my head, and bellow the songs that are deeply embedded in my spirit--knowing that God has the last word over the things that happen in my life and I know–through Him, I will be victorious in the end. Hallelujah! Thank You, Jesus for victory in every situation in my life–no matter how dark the night may be, morning is coming and with it–Sonshine (The Son will shine brightly and dissolve any despair in all types of weather) and new mercies! Glory to God! I am saved from my enemies!

It’s Not Normal And God Said It First! Excerpt

It has been said through various mediums (scientific studies, documentaries, etc.) that homosexuality is genetically determined before one is ever born. And because they were born this way, they claim their sexual orientation should be treated like any other birth defect or handicap. This theory is inconsistent with The Word of God. God never states that a birth defect or other anomaly or handicap is sin. He specifically states that the act of either men laying with men as they would a woman or women laying with women as they would men (homosexuality) is an abomination and those who practice it will not enter into heaven.

Let’s look at things another way. None of us are born gay or straight—we are born male or female (with a few exceptions pertaining to those born with both genitalia as a result of hormonal imbalances during gestational development). Babies do not lie in a hospital nursery right after they’re born with any conclusions about themselves. They are incapable of making any choices at that point. We choose what we do—and that becomes our sexual orientation—our actions which is why—some profess to be born—bi-sexual—they like having things their way—any way they can. Having an attraction towards someone of the same sex does not determine a person is gay. It is acting upon the attraction that puts one on the path of destruction and being labelled gay. Every one of us—chooses our actions.

We can be tempted to steal from a pile of money sitting in front of us for hours on end. We don’t become a thief until we actually steal some of the money. While this is a rather simplistic analogy, the premise is true for any situation. We do not become something until we act upon our desires.

And if God in His infinite wisdom, truly allowed someone to be born gay—surely, this is justification for them to become “born-again” and live the life God intended them to live, receiving all of His many benefits. This is why Jesus told Nicodemus that we must be “born again” in order to enter into heaven. (John 3:5 paraphrased).

It’s Not Normal And God Said It First  available on amazon. comNormal 7

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Revelation and Rest!

“All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:27,28 NIV)

Prior to the resurrection, Jesus told those listening to Him that no one “knows” the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son “chooses” to reveal Him. Having heard about someone or recognizing their name or picture is far different than actually “knowing” them.

To know someone is to have an intimate knowledge of them. This is one of the reasons that the term “know” was used to explain the act of having sex. There are a number of people who claim to know a lot of people, but do they really know them? We have often heard that even for those who marry those they think they know, they don’t really get to know them until they have lived with them. One of the reasons there are so many divorces is because people don’t really know who it is they’re marrying. They may be Prince Charming or Princess Wonderful during the dating process, but then–everyone is putting their best foot forward and hiding all the stuff that is revealed once a marriage takes place. Then, they become Prince Godzilla or Princess Witch. If time had been taken to get to know them, a great deal of heartache and expense could have been avoided.

Being in a right relationship with someone–where no secrets are hidden–and everything is revealed--creates an environment of knowledge that can be used to make a wise decision about the continuing relationship. Relationship with God is far more important than religious observances. When we are in that intimate relationship with Him, we hear Him when He speaks and He guides us in all things.  Notice what Jesus is saying, only to those He chooses is the Father revealed before He arose. Now, Holy Spirit has been given and it is our choice to receive Him and accept all He has done for us, by getting to know Him through The Word.

Now, after we get to know Him, we can go to Him when we are tired and weary–not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually. Sometimes, our bodies are tired, because we are emotionally and spiritually spent. Being in this condition leads to depression and hopelessness. But we can go to Him and lay our burdens at His feet, leave them there and walk away refreshed and renewed–physically, emotionally, and spiritually–when we know Him and know He only wants the very best for us.

He has revealed The Father through all He has done as the Son, and if we choose to know Him on a very personal level, we can rest in His peace, never bothered by what is going on in the world because we know–we win in the end.

Never Forgotten!

On Sunday, February 15, 2015, the area in which I live, experienced a major service outage for those who have AT&T UVerse. We had no television, no phone, and no wireless access. Fortunately, our cell phones were working and we were able to maintain communication with the “outside” world.

With no Internet or television to distract me, I was able to complete tasks much faster and sooner than I might have normally completed them. I had time to read, to talk with my grandson and husband, time to think and time to pray. At first, I was irritated that I could not post my daily blog, but while I sat, thinking, I remembered how I could use the time. I thought about all those who “follow” my blogs and my inability to remind them I was thinking about them and praying for them and then I prayed.

Father, in the name of Jesus,

Look upon all who love You and respond to every need.

For those who need healing in their bodies, heal them from the crowns of their heads to the souls of their feet and every bone, organ, muscle, tissue, cartilage, and joint in between.

For those who need a financial blessing, pour out wisdom from on high to obtain and maintain financial security.

For those who are lonely, speak to their hearts and remind them they are never alone because You are always there.

For those who feel unloved, encourage them to turn to Your Word and see Love in every page and be filled with the love You pour onto us.

For those who are confused and living in doubt, break the shackles of uncertainty and confusion from their minds so they can think clearly, with the mind of Christ.

For those who are haughty and high-minded, thinking they do not need You, bring them to the end of themselves so they will acknowledge Your greatness.

For those who feel weak in their own strength, strengthen them by the power of Your love and infilling of Holy Spirit.

For those who have been out in severe weather, protect them and  keep them all harm, keeping them safe until they can reach shelter from the winds and elements that could kill.

For those who are determined to minister to Your people by any means necessary, keep them diligent and focused, and safe, blessing all they put their hands to in honor of You!

Whatever the need is, Lord, You can respond to it like no one else and we give You all the praise and glory because You are the only one worthy of it.

All of this we ask and thank You for doing in Jesus’ name. In this moment, we declare it done! Amen!

Though I may not be able to communicate my love for you, know that I am always thinking and praying for God’s best in the lives of all who love Him and are willing to obey His Word. You are never forgotten by me!

Refuge!

“The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him.” (Psalm 37:40 NIV)

Who does the Lord help and deliver? The righteous–those in right-standing with God can count on The Lord helping them and delivering them from all that attempts to hold them bound by the temptations influenced by evil. He delivers them from the wicked and saves (those in right-standing with Him) because they seek refuge in Him.

Every community should be a “safe haven” for those who live in it, but we know that does not always happen. Evil lurks, seeking whom it will attack and devour in our times, just as it did with the walled cities of old. The difference then is the cities had the watchmen walking the walls, looking for the attempts by others that meant danger to those who lived inside. When danger was seen, the alarm sounded and everyone knew what they had to do.

In addition to the walled cities for the majority of the occupants in a region, there were also cities built as a place of refuge for those who had been estranged from their place of origin or for those seeking shelter from the harm of others because they had accidentally killed someone (Numbers, Joshua).

I remember that in one neighborhood where I used to live, my home became the apparent refuge for children seeking shelter from harm by those living there who were certainly not law-abiding. There was drama unfolding on one particular evening and I looked out the door to see my porch full of children who were trying to get out of harm’s way. Most of these children participated in my “porch” bible study during the summer and I was glad they felt my house was a safe haven–a refuge from harm.

In the midst of stormy weather, we are told to seek refuge in low-lying areas and for those of us who have basements–to run to the basement for shelter. In the Midwestern regions–open ranges, they have storm cellars in which they seek shelter from the storms.

In the storms of life, filled with uncertainty and confusion, Our God is our refuge–a place where we can go and no one can harm us. When we are in right-standing with Him, there is nothing we cannot expect from Him–safety from those who would harm us, deliverance from things that would distract us, provision when we are unable to provide for ourselves, wisdom when we lack it and ask for it, mercy and grace we cannot earn, and love overflowing–when we are emptied out and need replenishing.

If ever there was a time we needed to know where we can find refuge, that time is now. Dangers are all around us–bone-chilling weather, icy road conditions, mindsets in opposition to God’s Word–all dangers that should cause us to run to The Lord, seeking refuge in Him to avoid the consequences of staying on the path of the wicked.

Don’t linger in the face of danger–RUN to the Lord and seek shelter in Him!

Love Letter!

” Love is patient, Love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” (I Corinthians 13:4-6NIV)

Yesterday, I mentioned the difference between love and lust and how God’s love for us does not equate to the lust some feel for another. Today, I dedicate this poem to all who know love as God knows love and the love we have for another.

The perfect description (not definition)

Of love found in this scriptural rendition,

That many have over the years used

As their foundation, their muse

To write poems, letters and songs,

To remedy hurts and rectify wrongs.

If I’ve said it once, I’ll say once more,

To understand God’s grace, Those He adores,

There is no limit or boundary that will keep

Us from knowing or keep us from reaping

His best in our lives when we know

This letter, is not just for show.

God said it first and He said it best

Describing what Love is and all of the rest

Have just copied and mimicked The Word

In all the songs, poems, and rhymes,

This letter from Paul to the church at Corinth

Is never outdated, and good for all times,

For all seasons, weddings and such to be sent

To The Masses to show, love is who God is

To all who will receive and accept Love

That flows endlessly from heaven above

Giving us strength and power to withstand

The enemy’s attack every hour on every man.

But we can take a little bit of time,

Celebrating love with our Valentines.

Enjoy this day of celebration of love–regardless of the origination, what some may think or not, it’s always good to celebrate God’s love and the overflow of love we have for one another.

Unfailing Love!

“the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.” (Psalm 147:11 NIV)

As we approach the day many celebrate as a demonstration of their love for another (Valentine’s Day), we see that God’s unfailing love is not like our “temporary interest” love.

Of course His love for us is not “Eros” but “Agape” and God’s love cannot be measured in time or by our standards. His love towards us–is infinite, immeasurable, enduring, no matter what. He did not “fall in love” with us, so there’s no falling out of love with us–as we do with others. He simply–loves us!

The Lord delights in those who have a “reverential” fear (hold Him in reverence as an authority in their lives) and know that His love–will never fail. Do we dare have that kind of love for any other human being? I think not! Human beings do not have the capacity that God has to love us–no matter what we do.

The problem with our society and its understanding of love is that it has confused the word “love” with “lust” and this is why “romantic” relationships–sometimes flounder. We are attracted to other people because of one attribute or another, but it is primarily based upon our reaction to people that is stirred below the waist, not a heart-response. That is the lust in us for another.

The “romantic” relationship that begins with the heart (and no other body part involved) is the one that is more like God’s love towards us and it means we love the person simply because we are to love them–whether we like what they do or not. Let’s face it–none of us are perfect and we all have our shortcomings and habits that may annoy someone. But are the habits and shortcomings enough for us to “stop loving” the other? When we understand God’s love towards us and allow His love to fill us to overflowing, that love should be overflowing onto everyone we come into contact and when the heart connects to another heart of like-minded interests, the love should stand the test of time and strengthen the relationship.

So, while planning the perfect celebration for your love interest, make sure your love is based upon The Word of God, you have received His unfailing love, and you are in a position to hear Holy Spirit to have the very best celebration that demonstrates your unfailing love. When we do things God’s way, He delights in us and gives us the desires of our hearts–even to overflowing, unfailing love, coming our way!

Because Of His Mercy!

“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit,whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, ” (Titus 3:4-6 NIV)

When Paul wrote this letter to Titus, he reminded him (in earlier verses) that we were all once foolish, hated and hating others, doing whatever we wanted to do, serving our flesh. And now–since the appearance of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, there should be a difference between us who are saved and those who are not–because of His mercy!

We who understand the work on the cross and the resurrection are saved through the rebirth (born again experience) and becoming a new creation in Christ by Holy Spirit who is available to everyone who believes, because of His mercy!

There are some who think we can never do any wrong and use our role as followers of Jesus Christ to become superior to everyone else. That is not our role. Because of His mercy shown towards us, we should also be merciful towards others. We should not hold what people have done against them–especially when they have decided to accept Jesus Christ as their Personal Savior. If God held everything we had ever done against us–before coming into knowledge of His saving grace, where would we be?

Now that we are saved through grace because of His mercy, we should want to do good out of gratitude to Him who saved us and to honor what He has done by doing for others. We have not reached perfection and therefore we are just as capable of doing wrong as the next person. The difference is–when we mess up (not intentionally), we know we can go to God, repent and receive forgiveness and since He knows when we are sincere or not, He responds accordingly. Seeking forgiveness with a sincere heart ends with our sins being tossed into the sea of forgetfulness by God. Can we do any less for those who have wronged us when they seek forgiveness from us with a sincere heart?

I know some people believe that we should forgive and forget what others have done to us. I believe we should forgive and not hold grudges, but we should always remember what has happened in the past to avoid a repeat of history. Therein lies the difference between forgetting–not remembering and not holding grudges against a person. Forgive and be wise, considering the mercy that has been shown to you!

With that in mind, we should move forward–seeking to do good works for those in need–exemplifying the mercy God has shown towards us and not do anything grudgingly, but with enthusiasm and excitement, knowing what we do, pleases Him who shows us new mercies–every morning.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases and His mercy never comes to an end; they are new every morning! We don’t have to depend on the mercy we had yesterday or worry about tomorrow’s mercy–new every morning and with the direction provided to us, by Holy Spirit, we can do all things well, through Him who loves us and because of His mercy!