His Delight!

Sing to the Lord with grateful praise; make music to our God on the harp. He covers the sky with clouds; he supplies the earth with rain and makes the grass grow on the hills, He provides food for the cattle and for the young ravens when they call. His pleasure is not in the strength of horse, nor his delight in the legs of the warrior; the Lord delights in those who fear him,, who put their hope in his unfailing love. Psalm 147:7-11 NIV

When we have “reverential” fear of The Lord–having a desire to please and trust in Him alone, He delights in us.

The “fear” referenced in this passage is not about being scared or afraid–but in acknowledging that without Him, we can do nothing and our hope and trust is in Him--not what we can do. This fear–is about pleasing Him and not causing Him to be ashamed of anything we do. And make no mistake about it–we can cause Him to be ashamed of us and He will turn His back on us when we willfully live in opposition to His Word.

Consider the parents of those who kill and maim others for no other reason than their boredom. The parents still love them, but they are ashamed of their children’s poor decision-making and behavior. How many parents have had to turn in their child for doing stupid or illegal things? Some parents will and some won’t.

We have recently seen a situation in which a young man was hiding out in his mother’s home and a child was killed by police when they were searching for him. To allow someone to hide out in our house when we know they have committed a crime is not good parenting–they need to pay for their crimes, otherwise, we invite more stupidity to arrive on our doorsteps–which is what happened to this child who was killed. If the father had never been in the home after committing a crime, the child would still be alive. When we do stupid, there is no need to look for fault in anyone other than ourselves.

God takes no delight in our foolishness, but He does delight in our willingness to obey and please Him. We demonstrate our willingness to obey and please Him by honoring His Word on a daily basis and not just on Sunday. For the Lord knows those who are His and though we may attempt to fool others or ourselves about a right relationship with Him, He is never fooled.

Instead of plotting to deceive Him or others, we should utilize the time in praising Him for His goodness and mercy. It is because of His love that we are yet able to do all the things we do. But we must remember that it is because of what He has poured into us that we are able to do anything, well.

Realizing His greatness and the place He has in our hearts and the role He plays in our lives--is cause to sing a new song of praise unto Him. When we know that everything we have or are capable of doing–the gifts He has given–deserve our praise to Him.

Some people think that blessings are only material possessions, but I declare the blessings of the Lord are His mercy, grace and love, and wisdom from above. I know I’m blessed because of His love and I will praise Him with every breath I take! For in my praise, He takes great delight!

Which Path Are We Travelling?

The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. But the way of wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble. Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flow from it. Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left, keep your foot from evil. Proverbs 4:18,19; 24-27 NIV

Many of us are travelling different paths to get to the same destination. As long as we are mindful of where we are and where we’re going, the destination should not change, even if we run into detours along the way.

As a Believer–our final destination is heaven, but our destiny is designed and planned by God and we will fulfill it as long as we stay on the path He has established for us–on this side of heaven. Though the road gets weary and the obstacles keep coming–we must face forward, knowing what is ahead of us and forgetting those things behind us for we cannot turn back the hand of time and restart or do over.

However, when we realize we have taken a wrong turn–the turn that takes us off the path where God would have us, we must immediately, seek His path again. We seek His path on a continuous basis by staying in His Word, focusing on doing things the way He would have us do them, not the way we would do them.

Our hearts–the spiritual inner person–must always be attuned to Holy Spirit so we do the right thing at all times. This is why we are warned to guard our hearts–we must not allow evil thoughts or thoughts of opposing God to enter into our hearts, for when we do, we place ourselves on the path of the wicked and the darkness in our hearts is visible for all to see.

Let us continue to travel the path on this journey in life that God has set before us–so that all may see our good works and glorify God–as the light from the Son, shines brightly in our hearts and we become beacons in the middle of darkness, for those searching for the right path–the path of righteous–so they, too will reach the destination God desires for us all at the appointed time. Our destiny is the fulfillment of all God has poured in us to do here on earth, but our destination–is to live with Him–forevermore.

Praying For Others!

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:14-21 NIV

And all the people of God will stand firm on His Word, mindful of the results of the effectual, fervent prayer of the righteous, praying  at all times for those who are walking in the Spirit and for those who are not that they, too will come into the knowledge of Christ, submit their hearts to Him, and live to please Him, until all is fulfilled according to The Word and Jesus returns!

And this is how we pray for others that we may all live in peace, praising Him and glorifying Him with every word and deed.If we are walking in faith, ready to receive all of His many benefits, I declare by the power working in me and the authority given me that all who are willing to receive healing in their body, mind, and spirit–are healed. I further declare that poverty is stricken from the minds and lives of all who are willing to live by faith and work to accomplish all that God has put into their hearts to do and all will live in the fullness of His great riches  to His glory. I stand on God’s Word that His Love–will flow out of all those who know Him onto those who don’t and that love, will become greater as it is demonstrated as He is.

And all who agreed with this prayer–so that the unity of the spirit will work mightily in all to accomplish the word–the power of two or three in agreement–said Amen and it is done.

Be Still and Rest!

Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land. A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found. But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity. Psalm 37:7-11 NIV

At some point in our lives, we sometimes think we have to be busiest when challenges arise. We get upset, angry, defiant, rebellious and simply want to bulldoze everyone and everything–we think gets in our way. That’s the carnal mind that influences those types of thoughts.

The spiritual person–the one who allows Holy Spirit to speak to them and they listen–can rest in the middle of the storms of life. They know the battle is not theirs, but the Lords. They also know that no matter what happens, if they just stay focused on the One who has already made us victorious, right versus might will win every time. The Word tells us to “be still and know that He is God.”

It’s time to rest–physically, naturally, and spiritually–time to stop trying to determine where the enemy will attack us next. It doesn’t matter–the enemy is already defeated and we simply have to bide our time, patiently waiting to see how God works things out in our lives. God doesn’t need our help–we need Him.

So, if we need Him, why do we wear ourselves out trying to figure out–what happens next? God knows and when we truly belong to Him–totally submitted to His guidance, we have no need to worry, fret or get angry–we simply rest in Him, knowing that the battle–whether in the natural or spiritual, is already won.

Rest in Him today–physically and spiritually and keep your heart open to Him and watch what He does. I’m smiling already, knowing that He has me glad and it is the joy of The Lord that is my strength. I can rest–totally at peace–knowing that He holds all things in His hands and since I am belong to Him–no weapon–not jealousy, envy, poverty, sickness–nothing formed and fashioned to harm me, will succeed.

It’s hallelujah time! Praising Him while I get still and rest in Him!

Give Thanks!

It is good to give thanks to the LORD,
And to sing praises to Your name, O Most High;To declare Your lovingkindness in the morning,
And Your faithfulness every night,

On an instrument of ten strings,
On the lute,
And on the harp,
With harmonious sound.

For You, LORD, have made me glad through Your work;
I will triumph in the works of Your hands.

O LORD, how great are Your works!
Your thoughts are very deep. Psalm 92:1-5 NKJV

“O Give Thanks” appears 19 times in the King James Version and a reminder to us of thanksgiving–giving thanks 28 times.

If we are yet alive, breathing and able to see, hear, and move; have family that love us and friends who care, we have something we can give thanks to God for and if we have received His Son–the work on the cross–our means of salvation, then we can truly shout–Thank You, Lord!

Every day should be a day of giving thanks for if it had not been for The Lord on our side, where would we be?

I start each day, thanking God for life, health, strength, ability to move, see and talk. I thank Him for the wisdom He is constantly pouring into me and for loving me enough to use me to promote Him. It is His mercy and grace that have kept me thus far and it will be His mercy and grace that keeps me until He desires me to be with Him, for all eternity.

Thank You, Lord! If I had 10,000 tongues, I couldn’t praise You enough and there are no words to express my gratitude for all You’ve done for me. But when we all get together, seated at Your feet, my love for You will radiate through the heavens, just as my love for You is now demonstrated in my desire to please You and You alone. For You and You alone are worthy of all praise!

Those are my thoughts about giving thanks! I pray that everyone who reads this today or whenever, will have just as much or more to be thankful for. He deserves our praise and thanks giving just because of who He is!

What The Wise Get!

Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still; teach the righteous and they will add to their learning. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. For through wisdom your days will be many and years will be added to your life. If you are wise, your wisdom will reward you. If you are a mocker, you alone will suffer. Proverbs 9:8-12 NIV

The wise person will always seek one is wiser than they are to instruct and guide them–not only in spiritual matters, but in everyday matters. For it would be foolishness to seek understanding from one who has not demonstrated understanding of how God works and His plan for all.

In every area of business–no matter how big or small–the successful person or business does not gain success simply because of who they are or what they know on their own, but because of wise guidance–by those who have traveled the path before and know the way.

If we do not know where we’re going, we cannot lead others anywhere. This is true in business and in the church. If there is no plan to succeed, failure is the only option.

A business plan includes anticipatory results–a budget and a timeline to implement all activities. A good business plan will also include the possibility of not meeting goals and will always provide a contingency plan.

Wouldn’t life be so much easier for many if we just had a contingency plan? That is not to say we should anticipate failure, but that we should consider other options to ensure success. In order to get from one destination to another–we have to be prepared for the detours so we don’t get stuck in one place.

Knowing there will be detours in our lives--the unexpected challenge or obstacle–we should always have a back-up plan and a back-up plan for our back-up. This is what we need to do to move forward in the natural.

On the spiritual level–we need Holy Spirit to direct us at all times. If we truly relied upon Him, He would warn us of those obstacles and we would know that a plan of escape has already been planted in our spirits, so we will not fail–but succeed.

Now, the measure of success is a matter of perception and perspective. I learned a long time ago to see my success as having accomplished all that I set out to do. And all of my success–is because of who He is, not who I am. Going back to school as an older adult and getting on the Dean’s list–was all because of Him. Even when I was tired and couldn’t see straight–studying–He gave me strength and courage to keep going. As a result, not only did I complete a BA, but continued to an MA and now, have completed all coursework for a Ph.D–considered by academia–an ABD.

It is because of Him–that new dreams are becoming a reality and He is paving the way for things I had not even considered–because I am always seeking Him for direction; I know all will be well.

The same God–the only wise God–is ready to pour out His wisdom upon all who seek Him. The wise indeed get wiser when they are willing to learn. When we learn of Him and from Him, we know true success in all areas of our lives.

It Is Written!

“It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ “

“It is also written:’Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ “

“Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’ “

Matthew 4:4, 7, 10 NIV

Three times, Jesus told Satan who was trying to entice Him by engaging Him in nonsensical conversation and behavior. Tempting him to be a magician–“turn these stones into bread.” Tempting Him to destroy himself to prove himself–“throw yourself down” from the highest point of the temple. Tempting Him by offering what was not his to give--“All this I will give you if you bow down and worship me.” Satan was offering Jesus that which was already His.

And because Jesus knew who He was–confident in His role determined by the Father, He didn’t argue with Satan; He simply said, “it is written.”

Now, there was an assumption here on the part of Jesus and that was–Satan’s ability to read with understanding. Most educators know that not everyone who claims to know how to read, actually read with understanding. Some people are simply word-callers–they recognize and can sound out the words, but they do not understand the relationship between words in order to comprehend the context of what is being said.

The most tragic part of assessing a person’s ability to understand what is written is to determine that though many adults claim to read, they lack comprehension skills. And this is why–many are combative, angry, and irritable–they lack understanding and if we lack understanding, our confidence level sinks.

In order to know how to effectively avoid engagement with those who would attempt to deter us from destined path, we need to know what God says about us and the only we can know that is to get into His Word and seek Him for understanding. Then, when the enemy comes to tempt us, we can say, “It is written” for we have read what was written and understand it.

Having read instructions, directions, and even for entertainment, we can build our confidence in the knowledge that we comprehend and this strategy is useful in all walks of life. This is why having a paper trail–written communication–in business engagement is crucial. People forget, but if they attempt to say they were not informed and it was written, they have no argument.

So, let us endeavor to negate argumentative situations–no matter who instigates them by countering with, “It is written” and leaving it alone.

Do We Care?

A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Mark 4:37-40 NIV

Most of us are familiar with this passage of scripture and it has been the subject of many sermons and the inspiration behind a wonderful song, “Peace Be Still.

We marvel at the disciples faith wavering under the stormy conditions when He who created all things was in their midst, but they didn’t really understand that–even when he calmed the winds and the water before them. Their greatest concern was the fact that while the storm was raging, He was asleep and they dared to ask Him, if He cared about them. In their carnal minds, they could not understand how He could care about the circumstances and sleep through it.

When we know who we are and the power we have through Holy Spirit, we can be at peace when circumstances or situations attempt to destroy us. We don’t get upset, panicky or frantic because we don’t care about the situation, but we can remain calm because our faith will sustain us.

This is the attitude we must develop in order to rise above all those things, we “think” we have to control, when in actuality, we have little control over anything, but we know who controls it all, when we allow Him to do His job. It is because He cares that we can exercise our faith to care about others and to encourage and support them to “stay calm” when things happen that are out of their control.

Do we care enough to share our faith to encourage and support those in need? We can offer material things and many of us do, but sometimes the “things” are not what is needed; it is our peace and assurance that God will take care of us. We cannot demonstrate that assurance we have in Him if everything in life–derails us and we lost sight of the fact that He cares.

When we care enough to demonstrate our faith–comforting, supporting, encouraging, and simply being kind, others know we care about them and will be there to ride out the storms with them.

People of faith–don’t get bent out of shape easily, they don’t panic, and they don’t jump before the starting gun is fired, they are calm and focused because they know, He cares. They take the time to rationally consider alternatives before making decisions or taking any action and then their faith in God, always includes communication with Him, seeking direction from Him for all circumstances. 

We say we care about people, but do we care about them only when things are going well or can they see us as a port in the storm–sheltering us from our fears–because we are unwavering in our faith?

Lord, help us to care enough about others to always consider their needs and to demonstrate our faith when theirs may waver under the pressure placed upon them. Give us a heart that desires to serve, rather than be served, and a willingness to obey You in all things. Grant us the ability to rise above circumstances we do not control, and strengthen our faith so we can maintain our course–at peace, knowing You care!

Blessed Quietness!

The quiet words of the wise are more to be heeded than the shouts of a ruler of fools. Wisdom is better than weapons of war, but one sinner destroys much good. Ecclesiastes 9:17,18 NIV

We are told in other places in scripture that it is the fool or the foolish who think for their much speaking someone will be deceived into thinking they are wise. Actually, what we hear in the quietness is more precious than the noise of one who simply loves the hear the sound of their voice.

In the quiet, we can hear Holy Spirit speak and when He speaks to us, we know it is wisdom from on high. This does not mean that we cannot hear Him in the midst of a storm of foolishness, but within our spirits, we can obtain the quietness of His assurance and what a blessing that is!

Often in the midst of debating or disagreement with others, we have to allow our spirits to quiet down and hear what Holy Spirit is saying so we won’t dishonor God with our actions or words. I am so glad He loves me enough to cause me to listen and hear and then obey.

For it is not enough to just hear–we hear noise all the time, some we recognize and others we may not. But if we listen–focusing on the voice who is speaking to us from within, we hear and once we hear, we should obey. The blessing that comes with obedience is priceless, but the consequence of ignoring Him, is paid with a price that many cannot pay.  There is an adage that many are familiar with in certain circles and it goes like this: “Don’t let your mouth write a check your behind can’t cash.” In other words, we should exercise caution in speaking about things we cannot back up or handle if they fall apart.

Unfortunately, there are many people–Believers and non-believers–who tend to think that if they talk louder and are more abrasive than those to whom they are speaking, they are making an impression of their greatness. They are making an impression–but it’s not of greatness, but foolishness. Any time a person feels the need to raise the decibel level of their voice above normal speaking tones in talking to either one person or a small group of people, they are making a fool of themselves. Getting loud and obnoxious is not a virtue, it is an attribute of insecurity and the more agitated they get, they louder they get and everyone can see them for who they really are.

There is another passage of scripture that says, “even a fool–when he is quiet–is esteemed wise.” Abraham Lincoln put that same intent–more bluntly. “It’s better to be quiet and thought a fool, than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt.” The blessing of quietness!

We have probably all known at least one person (maybe many) who has to be the center of attention–no matter what the discussion is–because they love the sound of their voice. And in their deluded minds, they feel they are wiser than any other and will not concede when they are wrong, but will continue to make a fool of themselves with their much talking. 

Jesus warns us about those when praying–who think because of their much talking–the long-winded prayers, they will be heard. Those who pray in this manner have never read–with understanding–that it is not how long we pray or how loud we pray that gets results, but it is –our faith to receive–what we ask for that moves God.

So a word to the wise and to the foolish–there is nothing in the noise but chaos and confusion, but in the quiet–there is a great blessing–the opportunity to hear Holy Spirit and obey.

Wisdom Continues To Speak!

Wisdom, like an inheritance, is a good thing and benefits those who see the sun. Wisdom is a shelter as money is a shelter, but the advantage of knowledge is this: Wisdom preserves those who have it. Ecclesiastes 7:11,12 NIV

If any lacks wisdom, let them ask of God who gives it liberally and will not find fault with those who ask. (James 1:5 paraphrased). If God will give us wisdom when we ask for it, why don’t we ask Him, instead of trying to impress others with wisdom, we don’t have.

Wisdom thinks before acting.

Wisdom is calm and rational.

Wisdom seeks increase in understanding.

Wisdom pays no attention to rumors and will not encourage negative responses to anything.

Wisdom contemplates every matter before making a decision.

Wisdom rises above the fray of adversity in the hands of the foolish.

Wisdom obeys authority and as a result is an authority of all who seek her.

Wisdom speaks truth at all times, even when truth hurts.

Wisdom admires wisdom in others who know God, stays far from the foolish who think they know more than God.

Wisdom resolves problems and does not cause them.

If wisdom is an inheritance, then we must resolve to gain more wisdom and the only true wisdom comes from God. For if we leave an inheritance of wisdom in our children, they will the capability of making wise decisions, after gathering all the information they need in order to make the decision. If we leave wisdom as an inheritance for our children, they will be empowered to keep wisdom flowing from generation to generation.

But if we have not wisdom to exercise in all things, what are leaving as an inheritance for those we leave behind? Money, by itself is not the answer for we know fools and their money are soon parted–they spend it as fast as they get it. Money can be taken or lost and the Word tells us that “the love” of money–the desire to obtain it by any means–is the root of all evil.

But wisdom–once obtained–belongs to the one who has obtained it and it can never be taken or lost. For true wisdom is the ability to seek knowledge and understanding of what the knowledge is.

I am a consummate researcher. Anything I desire to know, I research and then I research more to gain a better understanding of what it is I have researched. This is a constant cycle for we–none of us–will ever know all there is to know. We just keep learning (as wisdom dictates) and I look forward to learning something new–every day.

If we scorn wisdom and getting understanding of knowledge, we defeat ourselves and the enemy wins. “Wisdom is the principle thing and with all of our getting, we must get understanding.”

If we are willing to hear and obey, wisdom will continue to speak to our hearts.