Not Guilty!

Not Guilty!

Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin”? Even small children are known by their actions, so is their conduct really pure and upright? Proverbs 20:9,11

No matter what we do or have done in the time we’ve been on the earth, none of us can say, we’ve never done anything wrong–unless we were physically incapable of acting on our own.

And that’s the key. If we are able to make decisions about anything, chances are–we’ve made a few wrong ones. Even small children–learning to walk and discover–find out the hard way that not everything should be put in one’s mouth or they shouldn’t touch everything they see. How much children are harmed by their discovery activities depends upon the parents’ detail to attention in keeping them safe and harmful events–limited.

So, if small children are known by their actions, how can we reasonably conclude that adults are not known by theirs?

When we promote hatred of other people simply because of their religious beliefs, skin color, or how they look–what does that say about us?

When we constantly promote the engagement of negative attacks upon others–what does that say about us?

When we think we are superior to others and totally discredit the thought processes of others–what does that say about us?

When we think we can chastise others and are never receptive to chastisement for what we do–what does that say about us?

We are known by what we do and say–and warrant greater judgment by God because we are adults–not children. The children–who do wrong–usually don’t know what they’re doing, but adults–especially those who claim to know Christ–have no excuse.

When we know The Lord and are cognizant of The Word and live it on a daily basis, we cannot say, “we’re not guilty” when we do wrong. And if we claim we’re not guilty of ever doing anything wrong–we lie and proclaim the devil is our father.

The one thing I will not be guilty of doing in this lifetime is saying, I’ve never done anything wrong. I hear Holy Spirit when He speaks and though I’m sometimes slow to obey, I do obey. I obey even if I don’t understand why He wants me to do certain things, but I know–if He says it–it can’t be wrong.

Therefore, I will continue to live like the King’s Kid that I am and hope to be known for being His–always willing to admit when I’m wrong and correct my behavior.

Unlike some–I cannot say, “Not Guilty” of ever being wrong, but I know that love–will make it right!

What’s Hanging Around Your Neck?

What’s Hanging Around Your Neck?

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck. Proverbs 1:7-9 NIV

In teaching the role of words in a sentence and in understanding word usage, it is important to note that a pronoun can never be used without an antecedent (the noun it is replacing). Looking at verse 9 in this passage–“They” is referencing instructions and teaching. If obey the instructions and teaching received from parents becomes grace on our heads and adornments around our necks, how on earth did we get to the place in which so much sin abides in the world?

By deductive reasoning we can conclude that since there is so much sin in the world that one of two things have happened: either parents are not instructing and teaching children how to do what’s right or the children have deliberately disobeyed and ignored the instruction and teaching of the parents. On a natural level–the interaction between a parent and child most people can relate to this. However, on a spiritual level, most have apparently missed the intent–God is our Father and we are His children–therefore, we should obey His instruction and honor His teaching.

When we ignore and disobey His instruction and teaching our heads explode with delusional thinking–we can get away with it and even entice others to ignore and disobey, not realizing what we have set ourselves up for with the consequences. “We should never be a stumbling block to others.”When we’re exposed our heads hang in shame and guilt, while our necks strain from the weight of our hanging heads. The foolish can never hold their heads high–unashamed of their deeds because there is no pride in being foolish.

Given this thought–about instructions and teaching–what’s hanging around your neck? Is it pride in honoring God’s Word or shame and guilt from ignoring it?

Lord, help us to develop and maintain reverential fear of You in obedience to Your Word so all might see wisdom enacted in our lives as we honor Your instruction and teachings.

 

We Are His Treasured Possession!

“Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine,” (Exodus 19:5 NIV)

To obey God “fully” is to acknowledge His authority in all things and to simply, just do it! There is no other way that we can see ourselves as His treasured possession, chosen specifically by Him, and given favor so all the nations shall see us as His.

Of course obeying God comes with a price tag that many of us already understand. It means we withstand the ridicule and derision of those who think they know than God–who are actually the Godless and we know them by their behavior. We are belittled by those who attempt to derail everything we say because of their own insecurities, guilt, and self-hatred. We stand up to their accusations of hate because we know it is not us who hate–when we are filled with the love of God–there is no room for hatred, but watch how they personalize attacks against those who dare to stand up for Truth and Righteousness according to God’s Word and not our opinions.

Yes, there is a price to be paid for obeying God and some are paying with their lives when they refuse to recant their faith in God. These are the true heroes of faith in Christ Jesus. Those who will not turn back or turn away from serving an all-wise God, though physical death may be the end result, God’s reward for obedience is greater than the hatred of those who will not hear Him and obey.

Yesterday, as I often do, I commented on an article in the New York Times regarding Ireland’s referendum. Part of the caption to the article started, “love prevails…” and that is what caught my attention. My comment, “Too bad many cannot distinguish between love and lust,” and it triggered so much vitriol that I was truly amazed. Hatred spewed from the fingers of many who replied and I just sat in wonderment watching them, thankful that I have so much of God’s love within that I never went into attack mode as they did.

This is when we know we are His treasured possession–when we can respond to someone attacking us, without attacking in return. I am so thankful to God that He has chosen me to be His, curbs my tongue and my fingers when the godless attack and propels me to show them respect for their opinions, even when they won’t respect mine.

When we are filled with His goodness, we recognize those who are hurting because their hatred directed at us, is without merit. They react out of guilt and self-hatred and when we dare to say anything that is remotely different from what they think–they attack. I truly feel sorry for them and I’m praying that they will eventually see the need to know God and be set free from the hatred that holds them so tightly. They fail to understand that it is not us–the Believers who obey God–who hate them, but them who hate us because we dare to believe God and obey Him.

This world is in need of much prayer for all–the saved and unsaved, but while we wait for the unsaved to get a revelation of God’s love, we can rest in the knowledge that we are His treasured possession. Keep praying!

Don’t Blame God! Bart!

Earlier today, I had an interesting interaction with Bart@sluckyducky on Twitter. He was apparently upset with me because I posted a tweet thanking God for the 1+ million readers I’d asked Him for and standing in faith to receive.

Okay, there were a number of questions he asked that I’ll try to answer. Why not pray that no more children die of starvation? He accused me of caring more about getting readers than ending rape, cancer, murder, etc. While I understand that his primary purpose was to goad a debate or argument, I refused to engage. My faith–in whatever I’ve asked for–is based on my relationship with Him and faith in God is accessible to any who choose to believe. Now for people who choose not to believe, that’s on them. Don’t blame God for all the ills of the world when those ills were caused by greedy people, selfish and self-centeredness, and lack of moral compasses.

Hungry children–when people cannot afford to feed their children they should consider that fact before having them. When governments care more about keeping the rich, rich and care nothing about the poor, that’s on the governments. When droughts occur that keep crops from growing and deplete appropriate animal feed and care–let the scientists explain it for you since you do not believe in God.

And that’s the other thing–why are you blaming God when you don’t believe He exists? How does that work? Are you choosing to blame Him for things that people do because it is so much easier to blame “a non-existent God” than to hold people accountable for their actions?

Bart said,”I have a Master’s Degree in Theology and ‘was’ as Christian for 30 years.” Apparently, something happened in Bart’s life that he never forgave God for. Perhaps, it was guilt over his own inadequacies, or hurt because of a loved one being lost or a host of other things. Bart–God did not do anything to you or anyone you loved. God is a spirit and He is love. Whatever happened in your life to make you hate God and deny His existence is between you and Him and I pray you get it straightened with Him before the end comes.

But let me get back to The Word and my prayer life, which is no secret. As I said to Bart earlier, my prayer tweets are a matter of public record and I have prayed for peace, calm, wisdom and the end of abuse and neglect of children, the end of senseless violence and hatred, as well as for “readers” of my books. God doesn’t have a problem with what I ask Him, so I don’t understand why you do?

When I ask God for anything, I ask–once, in faith–believing I shall receive that for which I asked (which is why I thank Him in advance of receiving it) and He always delivers. I don’t doubt Him for a moment for if I doubted He would do as I ask, I would receive nothing. But do know this–God does not force anyone to do anything. Obeying Him is always a choice. When our relationship with Him is right, we hear Him when He speaks and when we obey Him, we can have what we want from Him.

When people feel powerless in events over which they have no control, instead of seeking God for wisdom in how to respond to the situation, they simply blame God and then deny His existence. That’s not going to solve anything. The root of the problem is the individual’s unbelief and lack of faith. If they were to exercise their faith in God, without doubting, they would see the same results I get.

People play the lottery because they have faith in a lottery. They go to casinos because of their faith to win. They go to race tracks because of their faith in a horse. That is where their faith is. My faith is in God and since I don’t have a problem with people who have faith in other things, why on earth do you have a problem with my faith in God? Is it envy, jealousy, guilt, remorse, what?

Whatever it is or was–Bart–you need to get over it and stop trying to project your guilt over a situation onto others who choose not to share your lack of faith. And if it’s that deep–seek Him and get it right. The fact that you “say” you don’t believe He exists doesn’t change His existence for all who believe. You believe what you want, and so will the rest of the world, and that certainly includes me.

God loves you so very much that He willingly came down and hung on a cross for your sins (and everyone else’s). Was His love in vain? Are you so callous that you cannot see the sacrifice He made for you and me? Are you so overwhelmed with guilt that your heart has hardened and you have no room for love? If you cannot receive God’s love, you certainly are incapable of loving anyone else and that includes yourself. Let Him into your heart and stop hating Him for those things that happened that you could not control. Don’t blame God! He’s innocent! It is people–whoever created the problem for you–that you should be angry with, but you should also forgive–so you can go and have the best life God intended for you to have.

God loves you and so do I and your lack of faith in Him–will never change my complete faith in Him and all He does for those who believe that He is and will do for those who do not doubt Him.

I entreat every Born-Again Believer who reads this to pray for Bart–that he’ll seek God, forgive God, and receive God’s best in his life. God knows who he is and the real problem and He is able to do all things well.

He Can Handle It!

“Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken” (Psalms 55:22 NIV).

The cares of this world and our own personal lives can sometimes weigh us down to the point that we are bent over or beat down–trying to carry a weight beyond our means to endure. What would happen to us if we were bench-pressing–attempting to lift weights far beyond our ability to hold up the weights?  We could be seriously injured for the rest of our lives.

If physical weight could cause us injury, wouldn’t the same be true for emotional or spiritual weights–worry, frustration, anger, depression,and  unforgiveness ?  Many of us are beaten down by the weight of our worries about employment, family, finances or loneliness.  This worry can lead to anger, depression, and frustration.  But perhaps the biggest weight–the greatest danger–is an inability to forgive–either self (and carry the guilt of our actions) or others.

In most cases–the cause of our worry–there is nothing we can do about it and if we can do something about it, we need not worry.  If you’re going to pray, don’t worry.  If you’re going to worry, don’t waste your time praying. Sounds crass, but it’s true.  We can and should hand over all of our concerns to The Lord–He can handle it, when we cannot.

In the case of unforgiveness–this weight–has caused people to see an early grave.  Forgive and let it go.  Release that burden to The Lord–He can handle it.  When we forgive–we think differently, our bodies react differently, and we can see God working on our behalf.  When we don’t forgive–that heaviness creates a darkness in our spirits that makes seeing light difficult, if not impossible.  Give it to God!  He can handle it!

Lord, help us to release every care, every concern we might be holding onto and especially the weight of unforgiveness.  We thank You for making our burdens lighter as we take on Your nature so might be used by You to draw others to You.  In Jesus’ name we pray and thank You, Amen!