Tag Archives: Deuteronomy

Managing Your Mission

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If you’re a child of God, the second you step your foot to the floor  in the morning you’ve entered the mission field. The mission field varies from child to child but it’s a full time job wherever you are or whatever you do. Look around you right now, and look around yourself later… there you are on the mission field. God has a plan for you in that place and at that time, and Satan has his own strategy… foil God’s plan.

My mission for today is to create a battle plan that is road worthy. One that I can take on the road via this blog and share with other leaders to encourage them and myself as well to be prepared for this day of battle. I found the battle plan in Deuteronomy 20

You’re going!

Like it or not, if you’re in the leadership of the church, meaning you carry a position of any sort, you’re the enemy of Satan and his minions. But God says “Be not afraid.”

Deuteronomy 20:1 – When thou goest out to battle against thine enemies, and seest horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, be not afraid of them: for the Lord thy God is with thee, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

Forget the numbers and forget their method of transportation. It doesn’t matter if the enemy out numbers you or if they have greater means of getting to their destination, they’re not in charge. Oh my, how I needed to hear that today! I get overwhelmed when I start counting what needs done, or what obstacles are in my path. But then I read the Word of God and I am quickly reminded that my Commander and Chief sits high and looks low and He can orchestrate this army of enemies to part down the middle and allow my pathway to be straight, or He can give me strength for the battle, but either way my destination has been established of old provided I stay on the path. Oh… I’m going!

Your Pep Talk

Deut.  20:2-4 – And it shall be, when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people, And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

Your High Priest, Jesus Himself comes nigh to you today and tells you… let not your heart faint. Is it not the Holy Spirit that dwells within your heart, Who has the original battle plan that was drawn up by God Himself in His hand? He’s right there with us on the battle field. He’s not sitting in some office passing out orders, He’s got His hands right in the thick of what we’re in working through it for our good. God says  don’t faint now, you’ll miss the victory party! The victory party starts before the battle is over. We celebrate each step along the way as we watch God’s providence have its way again and again. Everything we’re going through will be a testimony of  His presence in our life. Don’t faint!

Your Orders

Deut. 20:5-7 – And the officers shall speak unto the people, saying, What man is there that hath built a new house, and hath not dedicated it? let him go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man dedicate it. And what man is he that hath planted a vineyard, and hath not yet eaten of it? let him also go and return unto his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man eat of it. And what man is there that hath betrothed a wife, and hath not taken her? let him go and return unto his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man take her.

Dedicate – when I get a new instrument I dedicate it to the service of the Lord.  I want that instrument to be an instrument of the gospel through music and ministry. I don’t want it used for vain purposes of building myself up but rather a tool of my trade. In verse 5 the scripture says that our entire home should be dedicated to the Lord. Have you dedicated your home to His service? I’m asking the Lord to use my home in whatever capacity He chooses. This morning it’s an office, this afternoon it may be romper room if my grandchildren are around, but may God be glorified through it. Amen!

Plant – Vs. 6, What’s in your vineyard? And will you enjoy reaping what you’ve sown? I pray that we are all sowing seeds of the gospel along the way, but as well as those seeds I’m also sowing things into my life and into others. If I want to harvest abundantly in my life I need to sow the right seeds in the right soil. Be it financially or spiritually I need to make sure that what I’m planting is what I want to harvest. I don’t want a job, I want to harvest a ministry, but I also need provision for my family so that I am not a burden. So I’m headed to the seed store to see what God wants to plant that will provide a crop of provision. What are you needing to harvest? And are you planting the right seeds?

Marry –verse 7 speaks of betrothal. That’s a commitment. Are you committed to the cause? It’s going to be a battle, you’ll be spending a lot of time together, and if you’re in it for the long haul you better be married to it. Get to know God’s plan for your life inside and out and don’t walk away from your destiny.

You’re Ready

Deut. 20:8-9 – And the officers shall speak further unto the people, and they shall say, What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? let him go and return unto his house, lest his brethren’s heart faint as well as his heart. And it shall be, when the officers have made an end of speaking unto the people that they shall make captains of the armies to lead the people.

In closing, God says if you’re not ready, go back to the house before you discourage someone else. But if you’re ready, God’s got people that need you for a leader. These are exciting times! What’s God going to do with you today… Lead on!

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Avoiding Transgression at the Election Polls

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“Then Came Amalek.” A sermon that I heard preached over ten years ago and I can’t for the life of me remember the preacher; but I can remember the sermon because it made such an impact on my life. It’s heavy on my heart as I prepare to go to the polls of Election 2014. Every single box that I check has implications on my future. Somehow America has forgotten that they are the ones held accountable for who is elected. There are times when we in good conscience elect an idiot, usually because we don’t have all the fact or they’re a great deceiver. It never ceases to amaze me when they get reelected.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!

We may forget transgressions, God however does not.

The Amalekite’s transgression:

Deuteronomy 25:17-19

Remember what Amalek did unto thee by the way, when ye were come forth out of Egypt; How he met thee by the way, and smote the hindmost of thee, even all that were feeble behind thee, when thou wast faint and weary; and he feared not God. Therefore it shall be, when the Lord thy God hath given thee rest from all thine enemies round about, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it, that thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven; thou shalt not forget it.

The Amalekites were the first ones to attack Israel as they left Egypt and they attacked them from behind where the feeble and defenseless of the Israelites were located. God could have wiped them from the face of the earth that day, but he waited for an appointed time. When the children of Israel had been at rest for some time this would become a test of obedience for Saul.

In 2 Samuel 15:3-5 Saul has been given the final go ahead by God to “utterly destroy” the Amalekites.

Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass. And Saul gathered the people together, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah.  And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley.

Saul failed. He didn’t utterly destroy the Amalekites, he kept back the elite and allowed his men to keep the best of the best from the Amalekite property. And judgment came.

22 And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

Here’s the Word I received on Election Day 2014

When the attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon occurred it wasn’t necessarily on the feeble but it was on innocent lives that had nothing to do with a battle field. And I believe that America for a few days acknowledged the power of God and His sovereignty over our Nation. We did repent… but not utterly. Our leadership kept some of the spoils and we who elect them allowed those who dishonor God to continue to be in office.

Deciding who to vote for isn’t easy. Israel wanted a King because the rest of the world had one. Saul looked like a king but when push came to shove he sided with the world. He kept the pretty people and the pretty stuff. Those on the ballot may look the part, but what about their hearts. Finding someone who “utterly destroys Amalekitian thinking” and refuses to go against godly principles is tough… if not impossible.  (I know Amalekitian is not a word, but for effect it works)

A few automatic red flags for me is:

  • If they supported abortion, they’ll have no support from me.
  • If they campaigned on Sunday, they lost me there too.
  • If the proof’s not been in the puddin’ for their last term as an incumbent. They won’t likely do a better job next time around.
  • I’ll support my community, I will not however support mismanagement.
  • I’ll pray for wisdom for me and for my community. I’ll love them… democrat, republican, libertarian, mountain or constitution party.
  • I have but one King. His name is Jesus.

On the Brink of Possession

Deuteronomy 2:31-33

And the Lord said unto me, Behold, I have begun to give Sihon and his land before thee: begin to possess, that thou mayest inherit his land. Then Sihon came out against us, he and all his people, to fight at Jahaz. And the Lord our God delivered him before us; and we smote him, and his sons, and all his people.

The children of Israel, after 40 years of wilderness wandering were on the brink of entering the promised land, and earlier on in chapter 2 God begins the journey with instructions to pass through certain parts of the country that are not intended to be theirs, but then came Sihon… and the Lord said it’s already yours, but not without a fight.

There are some beautiful things in life that I’d like to have. My “wanter” is alive and well. But for reasons, some known and some unknown, I have yet to achieve or receive. So this morning as I read through this chapter and heard God tell Israel, “move along, this isn’t your stop.” my heart sank a little. I’ve had to move along a lot in my 30 some odd years of adulthood. Most of which was for the same reason Israel wandered in the first place, rebellion, plain and simple. But now Israel is about to possess their portion of land, the day is finally arriving that they’ve longed for, but not without a fight.

My first thought was, “Why didn’t God strike fear in the enemies hearts and cause them to run, as He had others, why did they have to fight?” God not only didn’t strike fear in them, in verse 30 it says “But Sihon king of Heshbon would not let us pass by him: for the Lord thy God hardened his spirit, and made his heart obstinate, that he might deliver him into thy hand, as appeareth this day.” God stirred up a ruckus.

A Battle Strengthens the Mind

God told them in verse 31 to “begin to possess” the land. It was mindset they needed to have before the battle ever began. I’m not a ‘name it and claim it’ gal, but I believe there are some things that God intends His people to have and before we get it we have to make up our mind that it’s ours. It may not be a tangible something, perhaps it’s a position in life, or a victory over an issue, but whatever it is you’ll know. Because God will give you clues in advance. It’s those desires of the heart that are for His glory.

A Battle Strengthens the Man

Much like the physical battle strengthens the physical man, a spiritual battle will serve to strengthen the spirit of man. If God gave us everything we asked for, we’d be weak and puny Christians; but knowing that our adversary the Devil strikes against us every day, I believe that God puts some training maneuvers in our lives to build us for the battle. The battle we’re in may just be boot camp.

A Battle Strengthens the Memorial

How many movies have been made from the wars America has fought? We love reliving those time of Victory. The victories of Israel according to history occurred in 1422 BC, and here we are in the year of our Lord 2014 remembering their Victory. It’s good to remind ourselves of the sweetness of a battle won, it encourages our hearts.

My ‘wanter’ still wants. There are desires in my heart that just may be on the brink of reality, but I may still have to fight. You may too… get your boots on soldier…

Go Up!

Deuteronomy 1:21

Behold, the Lord thy God hath set the land before thee: go up and possess it, as the Lord God of thy fathers hath said unto thee; fear not, neither be discouraged.

In one of our teen camp sermons this week the teens where taught from the life story of David on the giants in our lives. At the end of the session I passed out index cards and ask them to list some of the giants in their lives so that we might pray over them and work on defeating them. One of the giants that was repeated was that of “discouragement.” I loved their honesty. I understood their giant, because I had been up against it too. He has so many tools, but I’m not sure that discouragement is not Satan’s best because it tears at the very heart of your enthusiasm for life; and bit by bit you find yourself struggling to move forward. You can’t get past this valley, it’s an uphill battle all the way.  But God said Go up! I love it in Deuteronomy 1:6 when Moses says the children of Israel “The Lord our God spake unto us in Horeb, saying, Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount:”

I hear that this morning. “Shari, you’ve been in this place long enough, it’s time to move forward. Why is it that once we get in the valley of discouragement it’s so doggone hard to get out of it? I have great attitude toward life. I’m not one that discourages easy. But it happens. Usually when I take eyes off God, and turn my ears toward people. Listen to Israel’s reply…

Deuteronomy 1:28

Whither shall we go up? our brethren have discouraged our heart, saying, The people is greater and taller than we; the cities are great and walled up to heaven; and moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there.

I guess David wasn’t the only ones with giants in his life was he? And neither are we. Which is what I discovered when those cards came back from the teens. And my first thought was “discouragement? Really? You’re so young and fun with opportunity galore before you, how can you be discouraged?”

For the same reason I’m discouraged. We’re letting people define our purpose. God said “fear not, neither be discouraged.”  Man said “People discourage us.” I’ve come to the conclusion that not everyone wants out of the valley and they sure don’t want to walk it alone. So they share their point of view, and point to the giants as if we hadn’t already noticed them. Some people are satisfied with the valley. The problem for me is I’ve had the mountain top experience before! I’m not satisfied in the valley. People still discourage me, and I still see the giants, but as Preacher Ed pointed out (he’s quite the encourager) we’re looking at the giants from earth, God views them from Heaven. When David went up against the giant in his life he didn’t talk about the giant, he talked about God. All of Israel talked about Goliath. David talked about God. We spend so much time talking about the things that are going on in our life, we forget about what God can do.

When we begin to talk about what God can do, something begins to happen. Our attitude changes, our point of view changes. We begin to think of what can be rather than what is. We see behind the giant. David looked right through him to victory. He heard the people, but he seen God.

Turn the people off. God said “Go up!”