Blessed When Others Insult Us Because of Our Faith In God!

“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (Matthew 5:10-12 NIV)

If there was ever a time many believers needed affirmation to stand on their faith in God while saying what He says, this is it. This is a reminder from Jesus that when we choose to live a Godly life–in obedience to God’s Word–that some will insult, belittle, persecute, and demean our faith with their insults, but rejoice! If the insults are a result of stance in our faith, we are blessed!

What we have to realize in our daily walk with Christ is that the enemy rises up at every turn–influencing the thoughts of those who refuse to submit to God and they are in attack mode–especially when we say what God says about sin. Satan doesn’t want us to influence anyone in his army to stop living in sin so he uses those in his army to attack those of us are bold and courageous–saying what God says–and refusing to budge in our position--not caving to the misnomer of being “politically correct” in our conversations about sin.

Who came up with the notion or concept of being “politically correct?” A soldier in the army of evil will do anything to manipulate and deceive people under the guise of inclusion and half-truths. Well–a half-truth is a whole lie and we all know how politicians lie and deceive to get what they want. So, the term–politically correct–is actually an oxymoron since politicians are seldom correct about much of anything in their quest to accomplish their personal agendas.

How does a personal agenda benefit the masses? It doesn’t. It is personal–designed for an individual’s achievement and seldom has any benefit for anyone other than the one who uses, abuses, and lies their way to a political appointment.

But for those of us who know the truth and that nothing is ever correct about saying sin is right in any form, know that when we are insulted by others, we are blessed by God. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather have God’s blessings than the approval of the masses who have neither heaven or hell for me.

Be bold and very courageous in your faith stance and preach The Word, in season and out of season, whether people want to hear it or not–say what God says about everything. If there are those who will not receive what you have to say–shake the dust from your feet, smile, thank them and keep it moving.

We are not responsible for people receiving what we have to say, but we are held accountable for whether or not we say what God says. Say what He says in spite of the insults and know you are blessed by God.

When you get weary of the insults and need a reminder of who you are in Christ–check out this book myBook.to/IAMALLTHAT  and stand firm in the love of God, knowing we are all that God says we are.

What Type Union?

“And what union can there be between God’s temple and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God said: “I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people.” (2 Corinthians 6:16 NIV)

The case presented by Paul as to why we should be careful about the connections we make or the unions we establish is pretty clear. He makes a strong case as to why Believers and Unbelievers won’t make a solid union. This one verse–could not possibly say it all, so I encourage everyone to read the entire chapter for clarity.

Paul cautions us to not establish unions between good and evil, light and darkness, idolaters and Believers. While some have in the past attempted to make a case for segregation of races because of skin color or ethnicity, this is not what he’s saying. He’s warning us about intimate involvement when those who don’t know God or establish policies that are in opposition to God’s Word. By intimate involvement, I mean close ties or relationships with those of dissimilar beliefs. This is not a reference to sexual relationships of any kind.

Why do we need to be wary about those with whom we associate and have close ties? The old adage, “birds of a feather flock together,” comes to mind. We develop bad habits faster than we develop good habits and when we’re around people who have “bad habits” we tend to emulate them rather than them emulating us. Why? Some people will do whatever they have to do to “get along” with others, not having the backbone to stand firm on what they know is right.

This is how gangs operate in neighborhoods and schools. It is our politicians function–they say anything to get a vote, but then do whatever is popular with their cohorts, not willing to cause waves, even when decisions are made that are contrary to their beliefs. This is how the insecure function in our society–they simply go along to get along in order not to be alone. This is how abusers keep their victims under control, but if the victims understood their own worth, they would not have been involved with the one who abused.

Anyone who uses intimidation to control or manipulate others is a tool of evil. There is no light in them, so why would anyone walking in the light and love of God have a relationship with them? They shouldn’t. When we, who are walking in the light and love of God, walk into a situation, evil should run and hide like roaches when a light switch is turned on to dispel the darkness.

Remember, manipulation is what Satan does, not God. Deception is what Satan uses to convince, not God. Destruction–tearing down is what Satan does, while construction–building up is what God does. And there is no union possible with the works of Satan and the works of God.

So, why we would even attempt to be in any type of union with the unbelieving? We shouldn’t, for God has said every man’s work will be tried by fire and only those works that are firmly established in Him and by Him, shall withstand the heat. We want to avoid the stain of evil that spreads like wildfire when we unite with it.  

Not every one we meet is good for us, nor do they have our best interest at heart, so move cautiously in determining who will be close enough to persuade or influence who you are and not who they are.

The Blood!

“For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect” (1 Peter 1:18, 19 NIV).

We sing songs about the blood of Jesus Christ, shed for us; we read that when He was crucified and the soldier stuck a sword in His side, both water and blood, poured forth. From the beginning–when Moses was given the commandments–there needed to be a sacrifice involving blood for the atonement of sin. We say we believe that.

Remember, Satan was a witness to the crucifixion–he also saw the blood–and probably decided then and there to influence the minds of people that the color red should be associated with evil. Sound a little far-fetched? I admit it’s speculation on my part, but think about it! How many times have we portrayed the devil as a “red” demon? How many times have people, in the church, associated wearing red with being promiscuous, loose, and ungodly? Why is that some churches want people wearing white while serving communion (denominational) when we should wear red?

Why? The devil wants everyone to forget about “the blood” and its power! What better way for us to take our focus off the power of the blood than by encouraging us to associate the color red with evil!

Call this a revelation–or whatever you want–I believe Holy Spirit provided me with insight about why some people tend to look at people funny; especially women–who were red to church. We have been convinced that she must be a harlot, wearing red in the sanctuary. We frown upon red lipstick, think red cars are too flashy, and whenever children are dressed in a costume representing the devil–it’s red. Well, red is also the color of the blood shed for our sins. There is power in the blood of Jesus because it was His shed blood that we now have access to heaven and in having our sins forgiven. His blood, that gives us strength, from day-to-day, shall never lose its power–as long as we remember–Red is not evil–it is the color of power in the name of Jesus.

So let’s stop associating evil and waywardness with the color red and remember that red is to be celebrated–a constant reminder of God’s love for us and the sacrifice He made that we might have abundant life–with His blood!

Why Faith in God? Part 7

“Resist him (the devil) standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.”(I Peter 5:9, Jude 1:20, James 5:15 NIV)

How do we resist the influence of the devil? We resist his influence by knowing The Word and every time he raises his ugly head, we beat him back down with The Word. This is why it is important to know what God has said about every situation that involves our lives. When we’re attacked–if we’re doing what God says we are under attack–we’re not alone. Every Believer, who trusts God and has faith in God, is under attack because the enemy wants us to believe that he has power over us.

The only power the devil has over us is the power we give him. But the same is true for God. If we don’t “submit to God” He has no power to reign in our lives because He won’t force us to do or believe anything He says. Having faith in God, like anything else we do, is a choice.

Being filled with Holy Spirit and praying in the special language He gives us, helps to build our prayer life and our faith that God will do exactly what we have requested of Him, when our request aligns with The Word.

When we pray for the sick, if we believe that God can touch them and heal them just like He’s healed before and the person who is sick is willing to receive healing, they will be healed, “according to their faith.”

When we pray for peace in our homes in our communities, we must believe that He will speak to the hearts of those who cause the unrest and they will hear and obey. Once again, God does not force anyone to do anything. He allows people to live according to their choices, but when they choose to live in opposition to Him and His Word, they receive the consequences of their choices.

Rather than praying for things, I believe the ultimate prayer request that God responds to is a request for wisdom. For if we have wisdom to proceed in life, we shall the things we desire. And if we learn how to “delight ourselves in The Lord (pleasing Him with our faith), He will give us the desires of our hearts” (Psalm 37:4 paraphrased). Everything we receive from God is based upon our faith in Him, not His love for us. Parents love their children, but that doesn’t always mean the children will do what is right and they put themselves in position to not receive anything from their parents based upon their disobedience.

Faith–in God and in His Word–is the key to making a difference in our own lives and in the lives of others. We must remember that God responds to our faith, not our emotions because our emotional reactions to situations keep us from thinking rationally (tool of the enemy) and the enemy wins when he can lead us to believe that there is no hope. Our hope and faith is in God, through Jesus Christ and nothing–by any means–shall cause us to be separated from His love.

Never in the Dark!

“You, LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.” (Psalm 18:28 NIV)

If a person has ever found themselves in total darkness, blackness, where not even a pinpoint of light is present, they know the importance of having access to light. When a person is in total darkness, hope diminishes, faith fades, and panic erupts.

Does this sound like the position we find ourselves in when we are cloaked in the darkness of sin?

Even though some succumb to the clutches of sin, ever struggling to get away from it, if they see a glimmer of light, they remain hopeful. Hope is what we have in The Light and with hope, faith can soar and we can know peace and calm in the midst of any situation that arises in our lives.

Darkness–in a number of instances in The Word is symbolic for sin and the influence of Satan. Light and lamps are symbols for hope and faith in God. Light and lamps are mentioned 248 times in the bible and darkness 142 times; light overrides and dispels darkness, every time.

Can a person accomplish anything in total darkness? What can be accomplished when the light of truth is spread all around us? One method of torture used by those seeking information in times of war and terrorism is darkness–when a person is kept in total darkness for specific amounts of time. In darkness–our imaginations rule and every possible horrible thing, invades our thinking. Once we see the light–even the tiniest point of light–shine, we begin to hope again.

Jesus reminds us that we must work while it is day–the light of the sunshine–helps us to see, for when darkness comes, no man can work.

Keep struggling to get out from under the cloak of darkness that invades and leaves you hopeless! Receive all who bring truth as a light unto your path and allow hope and faith to reign, never in the dark, again!

The Penalty for Lying!

“A false witness will not go unpunished, And he who speaks lies will not escape.” (Proverbs 9:5 NKJV)

I’m praying for any and everyone who lives to lie and cause harm to others–simply to gain monetary benefit or center stage with all lights on them.

The problem for liars is that God has already addressed their final outcome–they will thrown into the lake of fire–no escape route possible. There–with hell and Satan and all the other demonic forces-they shall be for all eternity.

I remember some years ago when I was teaching Bible Study at my home and a little boy asked me about hell. I asked him if he had ever burned himself on something hot and he had. So, I told him to imagine that hell–is 1000 x 1000 x 1000 x 1000 x 1000 x hotter than anything he had experienced. His eyes bucked and he made a decision right then–he did not want to go to hell.

Many people don’t believe hell is real because they don’t believe God is real and they certainly won’t pay any attention to anything in the Bible. That is so sad. If they understood the love God has for us and He does not desire to see anyone He loves thrown in the lake of fire, they would do better. That’s His desire–but we all make choices–to do what is right or to do what is wrong.

Remember this–Satan is the father of liars and his job is to kill, steal, and destroy–he has no problem influencing others to do his bidding so he can sit back at laugh at their folly.

Liars–all of them whether pathological or convenient or systematic–always create problems for the innocent. They gather to themselves false witnesses and those who proclaim to know a matter when they don’t, are also destined to be thrown in the lake of fire because they too–are lying.

If we only spent our time doing what is right, we’d never have to worry about doing what is wrong–for us or anyone else.

“The Truth shall make us free” from the penalty of being in the lake of fire, so let’s determine to always tell the truth, no matter how much it may hurt us, or cause us to lose that temporary monetary gain or fame. Integrity is still a valued virtue and I’d rather maintain my integrity in all things that lose it for money or fame. I belong to Jesus and I will proclaim truth as He reveals it and I will not become part of gangland mentality in destroying the lives of others. Satan is not my father and I will not give him that place of honor–by lying.

Everything we do has a consequence–we will either be rewarded or penalized–what is your choice today?

Identified by God!

“It is God who enables us, along with you, to stand firm for Christ. He has commissioned us and he has identified us as his own by placing the Holy Spirit in our hearts as the first installment that guarantees everything he has promised us.” (I Corinthians 1:21,22 NLT)

We seem to be in a never-ending search–trying to determine our identity–who we are, our roles in society, our value–and for the Believer–we have already been identified and marked with His stamp of approval–Holy Spirit indwelling in us.

When I hear about people in “identity crises” I cringe. I mean I know what it’s like for people to wonder who they are when their parents or other ancestors are not known, when their origins are obscure and they feel like they just don’t fit in with the family they have. I even understand people trying to find themselves as a transitional stage of life, but for Believers to not know who they are and do everything they can to fit in with “the world” just does not make any sense to me.

First of all, for a Believer to say they do not know their identity in Christ Jesus, I’d have to question their proclamation of being a Believer. Being a Born-Again Believer is not about being in a certain denomination or having a particular religious affiliation–it’s about having a relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

We overcome any doubts about who we are by staying in God’s Word, being in constant communication with Him and knowing when Holy Spirit is speaking to us; empowering us to do all that God has asked us to do. He has already identified us, so why are we in doubt?

The doubt is not a part of every believer’s life, but for those who waver–on one side of the fence or the other about belonging to Him or being part of the world’s system of political correctness. For those whose minds have been clouded with the deceptions of Satan, believing that what God said He no longer means, and we can just do anything we want, change any body parts we want simply because we “do not know” who we are. He knows who we are–before the foundations of the earth, He knew and established plans for us–plans to prosper us, not to harm us. He knows the future He wants for us, so who are we to change His plans?

He created us in His likeness–male and female–with specific roles to accomplish and equipped us with the means to live the identity He gives.

If people do not know who they are, perhaps it is because they do not know who He is and how He does things. Perhaps, they think they know better than He does and are determined to “create their own identity” apart from the one He has already established. I’m praying for them–for God’s wisdom to saturate their minds and hearts and truly see Him in all His glory and understand He knows–far more than we could ever understand.

Now, if God has identified us and empowered us with Holy Spirit living within us, why are we so afraid to let the world know who we are? We are not fooling God by being under-cover Christians because He does not need secret agents working on His behalf. We must learn to go about our Father’s business in the boldness we have and be even bolder because the enemy is bold and we should be bolder.

For those who are wavering in their faith of God–I understand the identity crisis. For those who proclaim total belief in God, there should never be an identity crisis. Who are you? Do you know your identity? Are you familiar with the rich heritage we have as Believers? If there is any doubt–seek Him and know–you have been identified by Him and given His stamp of approval with Holy Spirit.

Their Mocking Results in Blessings!

God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers.” (Matthew 5:11 NLT)

I’ve never really experienced “mocking” the way I am through “digital technology” and perhaps, never will again. There is something about the ability to remain anonymous that really brings out the worst in people; especially those who claim they do not believe in God. Or maybe I’ve just been fortunate enough to live in communities where people were respected for their beliefs whether they agreed or not. At any rate, I’ve come to know more about what this particular passage of scripture means through my voyage in using social media.

The worst offenders through the anonymity of digital technology have been on Huffington Post. Not that long ago, I would find myself responding “to articles” written on the Christian page and then I would be “attacked” on a personal level because of my belief. For a while, it was amusing and I simply stood my ground on my beliefs. When people became too obnoxious, I ignored them. When they became downright hateful with the racial attacks as well as the religious ones, I decided enough was enough and only commented to the articles and never again to those who plagued the Believers. 

What I discovered from those attacks was fuel to use in writing my books and in my blogs. For me–those attacks have resulted in me being blessed with ammunition to keep writing and to keep encouraging other believers to stand on God’s Word, no matter what other people may say.

I am strengthened, daily by Holy Spirit to keep writing and encouraging. I have been blessed by those who “choose” to follow me on a number of social media, and in book sales. I am empowered by the comments being made to keep moving forward, always listening to God and saying what He says–to me in my blogs.

I’m not foolish enough to think that everyone who follows me via “any” of the social media agrees with everything I say, but they are at least respectful enough to either not say anything or to disagree–agreeably. That is a tremendous blessing to me and I would not have known how many people really do love The Lord, if I had not kept writing–in spite of the verbal attacks. Praise God for victory in digital media–even though there are those who yet hide behind anonymity.

What I’ve come to understand from my experience using social media is this–Satan still uses people and tries to hide his hand with the anonymity of “egg photos, cute animals,” or anything they can find other than their face. There are some believers who are hiding as well–perhaps it is because of their experiences with nastiness on social media. I choose to let the world know who I am and that I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and I will promote Him, every chance I get, to whoever is willing to read and understand or hear (I’m just as vocal in public)--it is all to His glory!  Hallelujah!

So, go ahead and mock me so I can continue to be blessed by God in all I say that glorifies Him! I am blessed and highly favored and every time someone is nasty to me or has a hateful comment, God counters it with another blessing. Now, this is what the psalmist meant when he said, “He has prepared a table for me in the midst of my enemies” and now my enemies can  watch me devour the fullness of God in my life and be a blessing to others!

 

And Justice For All!

For the LORD loves justice, and does not forsake His saints; They are preserved forever, But the descendants of the wicked shall be cut off” Psalm 37:28 NKJV).

What is “justice”? Apparently, the meaning takes on different perspectives depending upon whose using the word and what they are seeking to change. When justice is used in The Word the reference is for those things that are being judged according to The Word–not man. Man’s use of the word changes as man changes his mind and purpose regarding the word.

For instance, we know that God’s judgment is just because He does not change–He is the same–yesterday, today and forever. Nothing He has said has changed in spite of what people attempt to do to sway others to believe that “God did not mean what He said when He said it.” Sound familiar? Remember in the garden when the serpent told Eve, “surely you will not die if you eat of this tree.” The same spirit–anti-God, evil spirit-is yet operating today and we know it when we hear people say, “sure that is not what God meant.”

The ACLU–may have once had altruistic motives for their existence, but it appears they now operate out of pure rebellion against established policies and laws. In the past–when their motives were pure–they may have been instrumental in affecting positive changes for marginalized groups of people.  However, when they operate in opposition to The Word–I have to question their motives. It would appear that their guiding spirit is from the evil one–the one opposed to everything God has said. They have stuck their elongated noses into everyone’s business and now they want to challenge “curfews for kids” (under the age of 18) which means they are promoting the demise of the family structure and laws established for the safety of children. Since their motives have changed–from doing good to doing whatever they want to do, I now consider them to be the –Against Christ-centered Laws that promote Unity with God’s Word.

Anyone who supports and promotes the agenda of this group must question who it is they are actually serving–God or Satan–and only the truth found deep within will rise to change the landscape of “injustice” perpetrated by those who feign fighting for justice for all. True justice for all promotes doing things God’s way, not man’s.

God’s justice preserves those who love Him, unconditionally. Man’s justice–is conditional and changes with every whim of those who oppose themselves against God. Don’t take my word for it–review the history of mankind and see how often they change their mind and not necessarily in support of Godly Righteousness.

Adversary or Advocate?

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8):

An adversary is a person or group or force that opposes and attacks another.The Adversary is Satan.

An advocate is someone who writes, speaks, supports or pleads or intercedes on behalf on others. Our Advocate is Jesus!

Now, to put this in perspective–any time someone opposes truth or deliberately creates problems for others, they become an adversary. This is true on a spiritual level as well as a natural one.

In a classroom–when students oppose or create the teacher or create problems for the entire classroom–they are adversaries to peace.

In a home–when children oppose parents or create problems they are adversaries to discipline.

In the churches–when opposition arises against the people–regardless of its origin–they become an adversary to order in the congregation.

In communities–when rowdy citizens create disturbances that keep others from enjoying peace and quiet where they live–they are adversaries to rights of others.

In nations–when leadership or the people–oppose policies that are for the greater good for all–they become adversaries to justice and sanity.

Those who fight for the rights of others on almost any front–except the promotion of sin--are the advocates who will find themselves aligned with the Will of God. Those who don’t–are aligned with The Adversary’s plans to destroy mankind.

Now is a good time to think which side you are aligned with–as an advocate or an adversary.

Are you adversary or advocate? You are the only one who can make that determination.

Lord, help us to be advocates for truth according to Your Word and not our opinions or emotions. Help us to advocate for the benefit of others who are overwhelmed with fighting their adversaries alone. Give us wisdom and courage to do all that is right in Your sight, keeping The Adversary in his placed, defeated and under our feet.