Saturday, April 29, 2017

Not Condemned

Each morning I get an email from the ministry of Pastor Joseph Prince that includes a scripture to meditate on and a devotional reading. This morning’s scripture was from Romans 8:1 (NASB), “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” It’s a scripture I’d read many times. I’d even memorized it (though admittedly I hadn’t learned the address.) But this morning was different. This morning I didn’t just get motivation; I received revelation.

The few of you who follow my blog know that my posts are sporadic at best. That’s because I had been under self-imposed condemnation. I felt like my writings weren’t good enough. There was little to no feedback so I began to think they weren’t blessing enough people. I kept wanting to do more for the Kingdom, to be more for God. I wanted to live out my calling and hear Him say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant!” I felt as if I was failing.

I knew in my head that those fears or concerns were not of God. Yes, He wants me to fulfill the call He has placed on my life – through Christ. Yes, He wants me to make an impact in this world for His kingdom. Yes, He wants me to speak a word in season to him that is weary.  But I was slothful and slow and sometimes just downright disobedient. Each day I’d repent determined to do better the next day. But I’d end up remembering all that I am not and beat myself up. I was rendered ineffective.

But each day, I also pleaded with God to not give up on me. I knew, I know, He has a plan for me – plans for my good and not disaster, to give me a future and hope. I know I can do all things through Christ who give me strength. I also know that He who has begun a good work in me will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. I know all of this – in my head. I needed it to get down into my inmost parts, into my heart, into my spirit. I needed the Words of God concerning me and His love for me to permeate every part of me. Then and only then would I be able to truly confess with the Apostle Paul, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20 NIV)

So today, I received revelation and each time condemnation began to attack me, I rehearsed Romans 8:1 and praised God for it. I thought back on the things God has already delivered me from and remembered the words of Mandisa, “I’m just ‘Unfinished’.”

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring but right now I declare and believe, I’m on the right path and I will remain there. I believe that I will go forth and declare the words of the Lord. I will keep the faith and I will finish my course.

Please continue to share this journey with me. Pray for me and I will pray for you. God is about to show us some things that will blow our minds! Then others will see and believe and proclaim the works of God and ponder what He has done. Do you believe?

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Help My Unbelief

I’ve been sitting here now for nearly an hour with laptop at hand but nothing to say.  There’s much on my mind and in my heart but how do I communicate it in such a way that it will be received? Actually, do I really want to communicate it at all is probably a better question. Here are my thoughts...
I had a friend to tell me some years ago that I was afraid of success. I thought he was a lunatic but because of who he was and our relationship I never forgot the words. I’ve prayed over them and allowed them some space in the back of my mind all these years, wondering if he was right. I think in some ways he was.
In my latest prayer covering this subject I asked God plainly, “What’s my problem? Why can’t I move forward in my calling when I KNOW I can’t possibly go back?” In response, I could almost see Him smile in my spirit – you know, one of those patient smiles a parent has for a child that seems to finally be receiving a truth that’s been spoken to them over and over again. In the end, it all boiled down to faith.
I realize it is impossible to please God without faith. He said so right there in Hebrews 11:6. So really, what is faith? Most who are Bible believers know the definition in Hebrews 11:1 (KJV) which states, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” I personally like the way Dr. Tony Evans puts it. He says, “Faith is acting like something is so even when it is not so in order that it might be so simply because God said so.”
What has God told me is question one? The next question is am I acting like it is so? Do I believe Him? My mind says yes, I believe Him. But my feet (actions) are not acting like it is so. I’m wavering – or am I? I don’t know, but I hear plainly and echo the heartfelt plea of the father in Mark 9:24 (NIV), “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

Precious Father, I come to you first recognizing that you and you alone are God. You spoke the worlds into being and from dust you formed man. You then took on flesh and redeemed man after he sinned against you and for that I take the time to say thank you. I thank you that you are not a man that you should lie nor the son of man that you should repent. If you said it, you’ll do it; if you’ve spoken it you will make good. You have said in the book of Philippians that even as you’ve begun a good work in me you will complete it. I am who YOU say I am and I can do all that you have created me to do through Christ. I believe this, Father. I believe you. Help me overcome my unbelief. In Jesus’ name. Amen and amen.