Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Triumphant Victorious Reminders, "Selfishness Revealed"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"Rejoice in the Lord always and again I say rejoice."
~Philippians 4:4 ~

It has been a while since I wrote my last post.

Some may ask and have asked...
Busyness? No Time? Christmas season?
Well, none of these are my excuse.
I will be to the point confessing that I have not written in a while due to my own choice to be selfish.
I have submitted to my flesh, which has resulted in resisting God and I have fled from the purpose-Maker over my life.

I realize that as James 4:6 records, "Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you" is not about a 'Three Step' formula on how to resist the devil.
Apart from God, I can do nothing... absolutely nothing.
However, when I submit to God, trust in God, run to God and HOLD ON to HIM; my Shelter and Safe Place, this beautiful thing called submission results in resistance to something or someone else.

I learned from the Holy Spirit that when Satan sees me in my Refuge, in my Safe Place (Which is Almighty God), Satan can do nothing but cower and flee because of Who God is; not because of 'my' so-called strength to resist.
Satan runs from my Strengthener who hides me under Himself as His massive wings.
When receiving this revelation in my closet, it helped me to see the purpose of submission.
It also became clearer of what Jesus talked about when He said we can not serve two masters. We can not submit or serve two things...we will hate the one and love the other.
In this revealing power of the Holy Spirit there is this powerful reminder that whether we submit to God or submit to our flesh by default resistance takes place.

The scales are coming off my eyes and as I walk in God's goodness upon the path of repentance, I realize that the time I occupy is not my own.
The time that is loaned to me is not my own; but I sure have acted as though it is.
It is being revealed quite clearly that I have not gone to Almighty God Who is not limited by time.
When I finally yield to His abundant grace to get the things accomplished that He would have me accomplish there is glory to be revealed of Who He is.

I am so guilty of having my own agenda list, but I am realizing that being a wife, a mom, a daughter and friend never caught God by surprise.
The agendas of my own must be brought forth and trade out my own agendas with the divine agenda of God.
For His agenda is to replenish and refresh, with His sole focus being on others so that they also may be replenished and refreshed revealing the Refresher of our souls.

My purpose is to REJOICE in HIM and be glad in the day that He has provided.
My purpose is to get the joy again that is from the inside by the power of the Holy Spirit.
To 're' something is to do again!
So everyday, I get to 'joy in the Lord' which provides and is STRENGTH for this very moment on this very day!
As I joy in the Lord of my Salvation, Who is Salvation I realize that I need to commit everything to the Lord and He will lead me to the divine appointments He has set forth manifesting in our dimension of time that has already taken place in His dimension of eternity.
Yes...this is mind blowing to even 'go there', but we must continuously have mind blowing moments toward our God.
It is our Triumphant Victorious Reminder of who we get to be in Christ as we realize that He is Triumphant Victory yesterday, today and forever!

When we give of His time, may we see the great things that He is doing and has done through us for others.
When our focus is on Him, it diverts attention off self...
praise God for the anecdote of self focus...
it is GOD 'AWE'ING FOCUS!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

December 15, 2010, "Connecting Bridge"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"Commit your works to the Lord and your thoughts will be established."
~Proverbs 16:3 ~

It was Monday and I was doing the normal thing; driving to the grocery store. I was planning on going to this particular store which I enjoy frequenting. However, this day I was convicted to commit even this 'to do' moment to Him. I prayed to the Lord to guide my steps and as I was driving I was led to go to a different store which I do not like to frequent because of the great lack in customer service. But as I looked back upon that irritation, for me to complain about not having a good customer service experience is truly not suffering. Perspective was put back into its proper place...I was reminded to have options to go anywhere while others experience true suffering was insulting to those who truly suffer; especially for the cause of Christ Jesus.

Hence, as I drove to this particular store, I prayed that God would utilize me. As I entered the store, I literally had a permanent smile, it was so awesome. As I started my grocery shopping; this is where the story I got to experience begins:

I was walking in the main aisle, getting ready to enter the chip aisle when I ran into Angelina. Angelina is a beautiful woman that I was honored to meet at my garage sale earlier this summer. In our introduction to one another, I found out that Angelina makes her own soaps, deoderants, etc. In the chip aisle we visited with one another, catching up with one another. Suddenly, as I turned, I saw another familiar face, Rebecca. Now Rebecca is a wonderful woman who was led by God to start Point of Hope Ministeries, a beautiful ministry that ministers to the homeless downtown. I was able to introduce the two ladies and as we visited some more, I realized as we talked to each other that Rebecca is by faith relying on the Lord's provision; especially for the financial resources to purchase more hygiene products to make hygiene kits. Upon finding this out from Rebecca,
Angelina said, "This is so amazing. I give 10% of whatever I make when I do a 'show' for my products. I have $30 and I asked the Lord today to show me who I needed to give the money to."
Angelina looked at Rebecca and said, "I know that God has shown me who it needs to go to...You."

With tears in Rebecca's eyes she was so grateful and was about to give Angelina her address in which she could have her mail her donation. This is when Angelina said, "No, if I don't do it now, I won't do it." She opened her checkbook and wrote a check to Angelina right there in the middle of the chip aisle. Yes, some may say, it's 'only' $30, but it is much more than the $30, it was one of those 'God Kiss' moments for Rebecca to show her that He is more than mindful of her. I was so amazed, we were in the 'chips' aisle, praying over Angelina's financial blessing that she was placing upon Rebecca, as we did so, the aisle was starting to become congested. As I saw all the people around us, it came to me as I wondered, "There are so many people in this aisle." After that wondering thought, it was as though I heard, "They are drawn to My presence."

Upon meeting between these two beautiful women, I believe God showed me that He allowed me to be the 'bridge' connecting these two women for His purpose. The significance of getting to be 'the bridge' is when the back of Rebecca's hoodie caught my attention, it read, "Bridge of Angels" I sit here shaking my head laughing. Our God is so awesome!

I am truly reminded to be in awe of God as He has eternally awesome intricate plans and purposes; even when we think the little parts of our life are insignificant; our God reveals that He wants us to experience His great significance every moment of the day, committing all we do to Him.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

December 11, 2010, "Setting our Gaze on God"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Criswell

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."
~ Jesus Christ as recorded in Matthew 5:16 (NKJV) ~

"If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen."
~ I Peter 4:11 (NKJV)~

Enamored. Awestruck. Amazed.

I shake my head as I sit here in this place of absolute awe of The Great I Am.
The All Sufficient God who needs know one, yet this Amazing God desires ALL of us as He is beyond amazingly awesome.

For He is All Consuming Fire fueled by who He is; passionate Love.
The Great I Am, The Great Father God,
The Greatly to be Feared God who is the most Famous One;
The Deliverer of the trapped and broken;
The Strengthener of the weak and tired;
The Refuge of the fearful and timid is LOVE.
I know that this is not a secret revelation; yet to truly attempt to ponder this mind blowing thought and attempting to understand such eternal greatness leads me to the cliff of 'vanishing points'.

Wow trusting in Him leads me to His ALL CONSUMING heartbeat of purposeful thoughts as He is full of faith towards us.

Our God is continually desiring to transform us into His glorious light so that the world is able to see the reflection of His Awesome, Uncontainable Glory, consumed by Holiness no one can contend with. This glorious Light of Who He is leads us to the reminder that we can do nothing of great eternal, 'destinal God~purpose' without the Creator of Destiny; Almighty God through Jesus Christ revealed by the Holy Spirit which must be revealed by us who have received and confessed Jesus Christ as Lord not only in word but in deed as we trust in Him to go about doing His excellent plans led by His Compassion and His All Consuming Love.

When we are tempted to do the things of God on our own strength; we will soon learn that our sin nature and frustrated flesh is all that will be revealed. However, when I finally lean on Him forsaking my own understanding; the 'God Nature' on the inside will be revealed as we see the overflowing power of God set forth the gaze of those watching to gaze only upon Almighty Eternal God, giving Him all the glory which is already His!

Monday, December 6, 2010

December 7, 2010 "Jesus"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Criswell

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life."

~ John 3:16 ~

Holidays, traditions can become such distractions. "Look over here." "Look over there." "He/she offended me." "I have to buy a gift for her, for him...ahhhhhhh!!!!"

When all the while as we're busy being 'petty' someone else is dealing with the 'hefty'. I'm not saying what we are going through is insignificant, but stepping back and truly looking at the other issues of life in which lives are being changed in ways I cannot imagine. Lives are ripped apart, effected by effected by divorce, murder, abuse and the list goes on. There are others effected by sickness, disease and even death of a loved one and a friend.

As I think about the many issues of life. I am also led to think about the one's who have not yet met their Rescuer; their Savior. He longs to rescue them. He longs to embrace them as all of heaven waits with great anticipation to celebrate another soul redeemed by the Great Redeemer...Jesus Christ...the Son of the Most High God.

Today, as I go about my day and an opportunity arises to be upset at someone or to be offended by someone; may I take a step back,and truly focus on The Almighty God. This Amazing God that I surrendered my heart to, my heart leads my mind to imagining I can see Jesus' Amazing Face, as His arms are open wide as I can see His nail scarred hands. As I run towards Him, I can see this amazing light penetrating the huge nail scars on His feet. I cry in utter wonder as most likely the only thing I would be able to do is fall into His chest as I experience the unfailing love beating against my face hearing the sound of His heart beat. Such Amazing Love as The One who holds me is none other than the King of kings, The Lion of Judah, The Amazing Majestic One Whose Name is All Powerful...JESUS! The Most Beautiful One could have come in all of His Royalty shaking the foundations of the earth to utter destruction because of His great power; yet instead, He chose the womb of a teenage girl. Our minds cannot fathom such a trade off. It is such an overwhelming thought to know that Jesus could have had ALL the prestige riches of the world yet, he forsook the Indescribable glory of what was rightfully His by the Father.

Today, I desire to take the opportunity to bow down and worship Him. I want the 'opportunity' (as my Pastor Stephen says) through the 'petty' offenses and shortcomings of others and most of all, myself, letting it become a place of opportunity to effect others for God's great glory, because of The Incredible, Indescribable, Ultimate Sacrifice He made for us. Much love was given, Much Forgiveness was given...much is required from that which we have received. Wow! What a reminder..."Lord, help me to see through eyes of Your Love, not my own. Thank You Father God in the Name of Jesus for the gift of the Holy Spirit!"