Little Foxes

It’s the small things that hold up progress. In my time as a minister, I’ve seen many people appear to have achieved perfection in Christ, but it turned out to be just their own version of perfection—perfect church attendance, perfect church attire, perfect children (that you know of), perfect involvement in auxiliaries, and perfectly faithful in their chosen post of service. Only later they find, through major mishaps in their spiritual experiences, that they had missed some very important lessons in serving God and growing in Christ.  Scripture clearly defines what God considers perfection.

In Matthew 5:48. various Greek words are used for “perfect” in the New Testament, one English word remains constant in translation, the word complete.  Christ’s sermon spells out for all of us as Christians that our righteousness must go beyond the outward compliance with the laws and regulations God laid down under Moses.  The law of Christ demands an obedient heart as well as a change of heart toward His voice and the Holy Spirit. Here Christ describes the divine love that needs to be in the hearts of all believers. It is easy to be drawn into the routine of Christian living and become self-righteous like the Pharisees in measuring up to the “rules” of Christianity.  Like the Pharisees, we can become concerned only with being strict keepers of the Law and miss the “weightier matters” of “judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone,” as Matthew 23:23 says. The Pharisees were overlooking the small but important parts of serving God and the honest joy of walking in the light.

There is great joy to be found in being honest about our shortcomings. I had this personal “thing” where I didn’t like borrowing other people’s clothes. I know; go figure. I could shop at the thrift store just fine, but the idea of asking to borrow an outfit seemed different to me—couldn’t tell you why. Maybe it was because I never had to wear hand-me-downs. Vestiges of pride were obviously hanging on.

Back when I was going through the financial hardship, God allowed me to be in a situation where I had to attend a fancy birthday dinner because it would have been too rude not to go.  I didn’t have the money to buy anything, not even from a thrift store.  So the Lord told me to simply “borrow a dress” and even told me who I could call. I contemplated, considered, and toyed around with the idea for days. I even told my husband to just go to the dinner without me because it was just too embarrassing for me to put on the “rag” I had in my closet.  But even though I was truly ashamed of what I had to wear, I did not want the solution God put in front of me. Since I could not escape the obligation, however, I realized God wanted me to attend, which meant I had to borrow the dress from the person God told me to borrow it from.

The person I needed to call had the right dress, just like the Lord said; it fit perfectly, and it was just the style I would have chosen myself. She even told me to keep the dress after the party—ain’t God good? Now if I had not listened to the Holy Spirit and refused to come face to face with my pride, I would not have learned this valuable lesson in love, giving, and following the Holy Spirit. Now that might seem like a ridiculous thing, but small things can be troublesome and a hindrance to your spiritual growth.

MONDAY MEDITATION -Finding Joy in Darkness

How do you find joy in tribulation?
Often when I’ve been in dark places, I am awed at the peace that surrounds me, and how the Lord helps me to keep emotional pain from damaging my faith in Him. This process has to be supernatural. My mind tells me to panic or be depressed and feel hopeless. To possess joy, I must go beyond the natural and cultivate the spiritual mind. (Romans 8:6b).

about-joy1How do you find joy in tribulation?

Often when I’ve been in dark places, I am amazed at the peace that surrounds me, and how the Lord helps me harness my emotional pains and keep my faith in Him. This process has to be supernatural. On the one hand, my mind tells me to panic and on the other hand, I may begin to feel hopeless and depressed. But I learned that to maintain joy, I must go beyond my thoughts and feelings and cultivate the spiritual mind. Romans 8:6 tells us that to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

Having the mind of Christ is a daily challenge. It is a mental state that is easier to achieve before tribulations come, and tough (but not impossible) to achieve after troubles set in.

Continue reading “MONDAY MEDITATION -Finding Joy in Darkness”

DO YOU BELIEVE GOD?

Do we have faith in our everyday circumstances and difficulties? Do we believe God is a rewarder of those that diligently seek him?

faith-quoteDo we have faith in our circumstances and difficulties? Do we believe God is a deliverer and a rewarder of those that diligently seek him? Is there anything that you are facing now where you can ask yourself do I believe God? We know that Faith without works is a dead faith, but Jesus also said the work of God is to believe on Him.

Jesus answered and said unto them, this is the work of God that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

St. John 6:29

Continue reading “DO YOU BELIEVE GOD?”

Not Letting Failure Destroy You

If you have suffered a failure or sinned, the most important thing in the world is that you make your amends and are honest with God. Don’t allow the guilt and shame of spiritual failures to destroy you, and cause you to sink into depression. Never let people’s negative opinion of you become your reality. The only person or people that matter at the end of the day is God. It’s Him that we must all stand before to be judged and God is never looking to destroy us if we are looking to Him.

 

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Forgetting those things that are behind and reaching forward to the things that are before, I press toward the mark  for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ   Jesus (Philippians 3:13-14)

PAUL

Paul, who wrote these words, is  often thought of as one of the greatest apostles, if not THE most accomplished apostle in terms of his works.  Paul had to face his past failures and people’s hatred of who he was.  Continue reading “Not Letting Failure Destroy You”

Overcoming Anger

In our walk with God, there comes a pivotal moment where you have to decide. Do I want to be right or do I want to be happy and move on with my life? The times I’ve been in those situations. I’ve always found that it’s better just to move on. Why? Here are the problems with trying to show people you’re right.

depressed

In our walk with God, there comes a pivotal moment where you have to decide.  Do I want to be right or do I want to be happy and move on with my life?  The times I’ve been in those situations.  I’ve always found that it’s better just to move on.  Why? Here are the problems with trying to show people you’re right. Continue reading “Overcoming Anger”