Saturday, July 31, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
I ask myself the following questions:
When I woke up this morning, did I intentionally think on the Lord?
Or, did I unintentionally think of the concerns of my day?
When my feet hit the ground, did I run to praise the Lord?
Or did I immediately "praise" the problems of the world?
Have you heard of the 'religious' cliche?
"They're so heavenly minded; they're no earthly good";
but there is this one also...as I thought about it, I wrote:
"We can be so earthly minded; we're no "heavenly" good".
So with these two statements, it tells me that there must be balance, correct?
How do we live a balanced life?
I'm sure we could come up with many answers to this question.
As many people there are; I am sure there are as many opinions to that question.
Well, let's look at the Word in which we are called to live by:
"Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say 'Rejoice'!"
"I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall be continually in my mouth."
"Count it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations. Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience. But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing."
When you read the scripture that relate to praising and rejoicing in God and declaring His greatness, it is usually associated with a trial or tribulation.
We "rejoice in the Lord always"...it doesn't matter what our concerns are, what has happened to us or what is presently happening to us...we rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS!
It doesn't say to rejoice in what you are going through,
it says to "Rejoice in the Lord always and again I say, 'Rejoice'"
As we have been going through some rocky times, which let me say, some are self-induced 'rocky times',...we are realizing that praising God is a mighty weapon against the enemy. Have you tried it? You won't feel like it, but when you choose to utilize the weapon of praise, despite your feelings, it's amazing how the problem is demagnified and God is Magnified, which is where He is to be at all times!
When we rejoice in Him, it causes Him to be magnified in our sights! No matter our sights; He is Magnified above all, yet then we give Him place even in our hearts and minds, we agree with what He already is! I love what I heard in 2006 when things were really rough. I was outside, checking the mail, when I heard in my spirit which ministered to my mind, "Look up!" Then, as I looked up I heard, "The sky is as the train of My majestic robe, even the heavens cannot contain Me...so why do you try to contain Me?" Soon after I heard that in my spirit, I recognized subtly the power of praise. I'm not just talking about singing songs of praise, but truly declaring the praise which belongs to God and God alone (Example: "I praise you Lord for Who You are; I declare as the heavens declare your amazing glory! You are eternally just and merciful. Thank you for your Love and your Power to endure, persevere and most of all TRUST in YOU at ALL times!
As you exalt the Lord, watch what will happen. Even if you don't feel like it, just triumph over those feelings regarding someone or something and praise the name of the Lord. The peace of God will rule and reign in our hearts when we do so! It's an automatic! You praise God, He will raise you through it!
No wonder when Jesus said, "I have come that you may have life and life more abundantly". For as God has given us life and then life more abundantly; that abundance is to be given to others so they may also experience life more abundantly and they 'pay it forward' as the abundance of God effects them with great triumph! The abundance is not for us to hoard; it is to be utilized as a tool to reveal to others the unfailing, abundant love of God!
When we start exercising the power of praise by faith in God every day, no matter what our situation or concerns are, when the day comes that we need to praise Him even more, as the giants of concern, worry, anxieties shout at us...we can shout back by faith in God, knowing who our God truly is! In the praise He will reveal Himself in ways that we could never imagine, hope for or dream of.
Be encouraged today to know that if you suffer for the cause of loving Jesus Christ...that is the wealthiest life and most fulfilled life to live! I pray the grace of God over each of our hearts and lives so we will walk in boldness for the glory of God, which is our rear guard (Isaiah 58, specifically referencing, Isaiah 58:8).
God bless us all, as we allow Him to reveal Himself over our life, through our life and most importantly upon the lives of others!
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Friday, July 23, 2010
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Monday, July 12, 2010
Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Criswell
"“…To give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified."
~ Isaiah 61:3 ~
Imagine this scene, mirrors in front and on the sides; treadmills, elliptical machines and weight machines throughout the room. My peripheral vision leads my head to turn as I watch a woman get onto the treadmill. My second glance is quick, yet my eyes will not allow my head to turn away as I stare saying to myself,
“But wait? Is she…?”
“Yes! No! Yes!”
“O no! Please no!”
“O, bless her heart, does she know?”
She’s wearing none other than a bikini. You may ask, “Are you kidding?” I must say. “I don’t kid about things like this.”
Panic strikes me as I’m on my treadmill. My eyes cannot believe what they are seeing as I continue to walk on my treadmill. O no!
Some parts of her are truly flapping in the wind!
The initial shock, finally wears off when I come back to my reality of working out. Seeing her in this attire, motivates me even more so to continue working out. As I look back up, she’s running quite hard and quite fast. She even looks like she is getting closer to the edge of the treadmill. I look down at my monitor to see how many torturous minutes I have left.
I look up to find she’s not there.
Wait! I look again!
She’s in midair!
O! Wait, her bottom side just hit the floor and as she hit the floor she bounced and came back and bounced again and came back when suddenly her bottoms were literally coming off. I must say it was like watching a skipping stone glide across the water; so it was with her bottom side skipping upon the floor of the gymnasium, I might add, not so gracefully. Finally, she lands so violently into the wall; the look on her face was of: confusion, embarrassment and laughing in great pain.
I know this is a funny story, and what makes it more hysterical? It is all true! Now I will say on her behalf, the reason she wore a bikini was because in our apartment complex where we had lived many years ago, the gym was connected to the pool grounds.
This story although funny, brings me to a great reminder. Many times, without knowing, what we think we can wear because we ‘feel’ like it, does not benefit the other people around us…at all! The stare of disbelief and shock due to, for example, what we ‘feel’ like behaving as we wear a bad attitude is not beneficial to anyone; and it surely does not bring glory to our God. Furthermore, we can become a stumbling block; tripping others up and ourselves causing undue shame in the process of our focus on what we want or feel, versus what God has called us to do. We have been called to do all things, if possible, not to offend another brother or sister. We must become more sensitive to the presence of our awesome God, desiring to reveal glimpses of Who He is! I am reminded that I must display the compassionate love of God as we receive the oil of joy, replacing our sadness and mourning that God has provided. Let us give God our ashes as He desires to lavishly place His glorious beauty upon your head. Most importantly, let us take off that spirit of heaviness and put on the garment of praise; praising Almighty God for Who He is!