Category Archives: Bible Journaling

The Experimentation of Youth and Life

experiment

Not their experimentation, but rather mine. Having raised my own two daughters and now being the spiritual mom of many others in the teen ministry I’m pretty sure, then and now, I’ve treated it like a weird science experiment. I’ll add a little Word, a little conversing, an illustration or two and “poof” let’s see what happens. My poor girls went through several years of me being an unsaved mom doing the experimentation without the Holy Spirit’s guidance, and for that grace I’m just glad they survived. But post salvation, raising kids, working with youth and now having grandchildren, my experimentation is a lesson in the chemistry of God’s word. So is life in general really.

No matter your age, being that age is irrelevant in the coming Kingdom, we’re forever in the learning process of living. Some just learn faster and with less experimenting than others. Me, I’m always adding a new chemical compound to the mix to see if the results are any different. It’s usually followed by KABOOM! But I’m more cautious with the ministry knowing that I’m held to a greater accountability in Christ Jesus.

James 3:1

My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.

1 Timothy 4:12-16

Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith in purity. Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery. Meditate upon these thing; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them; for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.

Glamorous Stupidity

In the book of 1 Timothy Apostle Paul’s words to Timothy as a young man serve to remind me as I serve youth, and live my own life, I’m living as an example. Anything that I add to the mix of someone else’s life can change that life for the positive or negative regarding their end result. When giving illustrations from my own life and past mistakes I try to be very careful that I don’t glamorize stupidity. It sounds crazy but I’ve seen it so often when someone is telling a tale of their youth and it sounds fun! Yes it was. Right up until the point where you could have died. Let me make sure not to leave that tidbit of information out, and about the regret I feel now having been a bad example for my friends rather than a good one. Youth is not to be despised, we and they will make mistakes. But don’t ever forget to remind them and us that we’re the standard by which the world measures Christ.

Glimmering Stimulus

I am for certain a lover of all things shiny. If it sparkles I am captivated, which can get me into serious trouble. But it can also work to my advantage in that I also like to shine! I want to be entertaining (for the glory of Christ, not self). I don’t want to say look at me, look at me! I want to say look at Christ in me! Look what He’s done for me! Because of the experimentation of someone else on this earth who was willing to invest some time and energy into me, I now serve a Mighty and Awesome God! And serving Him should stimulate others to have that same desire if I’m doing it right. Humdrum Christians bother me… just sayin’.

Glowing Stewardship

Of every gift and ability we’ve been given we’re going to be accountable that it was used for the purpose of the Kingdom. Paul told Timothy to meditate on those things.

Have you thought about the gifts within you? Are you aware that they should be shiny and evident so that people can see what Christ is doing in your life and in so doing you may have the opportunity to see their salvation? I know virtually nothing about chemistry. Science was not my forte. But I know Jesus! And I know that anytime He is mixed into the equation success is imminent. And so I keep on keeping on in the ministry, because just so you know… you are my experiment!

2 Corinthians 9:13

 Whiles by the experiment of this ministration they glorify God for your professed subjection unto the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal distribution unto them, and unto all men;

Faith Is… Dancing in Army Boots

army boots

Nobody who’s been a Christian for more than twenty minutes would likely say “Faith is easy.” Getting saved is easy. That’s just a matter of accepting what Christ did for you. Staying saved is easy, that’s just a matter of accepting what Christ did as enough, because we can’t do enough. Living faith… well that’s another story. Just after the words “I can do this!” come out of my mouth, Satan drops by with words like “Or so you thought…” Dancing for the Lord is great, until you try to do it in Army boots.

That was the thot on my heart this morning as I look at my life and the lives of friends and family who struggle every day with “real life”, but keep on praising! “Real life” is heartache, financial issues, illness, death, sin, brokenness, hurt…” that’s the things that life is made up of on many days for mane people.

I’ve been continuing on in the book of 2 Samuel, slowly making my way through the life of David. He fascinates me. He was man after God’s own heart, but a man none the less. He was a lying, adulterous, murdering man. So how could God refer to him as a man after His own heart? In 2 Samuel 6, he danced before the Lord and got in trouble with his wife Michal, in 2 Samuel 11 he’s committing adultery with and impregnating Bathsheba which lead to the decision of killing Bathsheba’s husband, which lead to the death their child. David’s life was certainly “real!”

In less than a dozen chapters of life David had been a hero, a lover, a fighter and a down right scoundrel. So in chapter 12, verse 20 as he’s given the news of his child’s death, it says he “arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed himself, and changed his apparel, and came into the house of the Lord, and worshipped: then he came to his own house; and when he required, they set bread before him and he did eat.

The staff thought that strange, to which David responded “While the child was yet alive, I fasted and wept; for I said Who can tell whether God will be gracious to me, that the child may live? But now he is dead, wherefore should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.”

Heartache doesn’t stop in life even if you’re a man (or woman) after God’s own heart. Life happens. We struggle, we sin, we grieve, we get angry… and when it’s over we dance. The victory will come for a child of God but not always in the manner we’d like. And sometimes the outcome is beyond what our imagination could comprehend. You just can’t explain God. Only He can.

But we can dance in army boots.

Because the battle is real, but even in the battle God is worthy of being praised! ~ The Jesus Chick

 

Don’t Grow Weary of the Spiritual Fashion Police

praise

Reasoning, questioning and intentions were certainly apart of King David’s life. His father reasoned that he wasn’t even suitable to be in contention to meet Samuel, his brothers questioned his intentions at the battle with Goliath and Saul questioned his intentions for the Kingdom; and all David wanted to do was take care of the Lord’s business, wherever it was that the Lord’s business was taking place. Be it in the fields as a shepherd, in the King’s house as a musician, or on the battlefield of life. David just wanted to serve God.

David too was known to question God, as he did when God killed Uzzah for touching the ark (which was forbidden) as they were returning it to the City of David. David didn’t understand God’s reasoning, and it caused him to fear:

2 Samuel 6:9

And David was afraid of the Lord that day, and said, How shall the ark of the Lord come to me?

David didn’t understand why a reflex response (Uzzah thought the ark was falling) would get him killed. But it wasn’t about the reflex, it was about the manner the ark was being carried. The words said the ark was new because the ark was never to be on a cart, it was to be carried by the priests on their shoulders. This oversight was why Uzzah was killed. God has ways that we may not understand, but sometimes we should.

David finally gets over his fear when he hears the Lord is blessing the home for which he left the ark in and he goes to retrieve it. It’s here that David is in his element! He is dancing and praising and partying all the back in celebration of having the presence of the Lord back in his life. But again there is more questions of his intention from his wife Michal.

6:14

And David danced before the Lord with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod.

6:20

Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to met David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel today, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself.

David’s been through a lot! He’s lost friends, he’s fought battles, he’s been on the run and things are finally falling into place. God has given him the Kingdom of Israel and he’s returning home, only to be questioned by a jealous wife who was more concerned about what her husband’s attire than the fact he’s home safe and celebrating what God’s doing.

I’ve felt that questioning stare of judgment as to why I am who I am and why I don’t mind when others are who they are. I’m not going to question the intent of anyone else’s heart on the way they choose to worship the Lord or conduct their service so long as they are serving Jesus Christ. So Michal’s complaint kind of got on my nerves this morning on David’s behalf.

With the exception of a very close few in my circle, most people do not understand the battlefield that I’ve come from. I’ve had to fight to stay in the church I’m in because Satan on more than one occasion gave me reason to leave. I didn’t say people… although there’s usually a few involved. But much like David, I had questioned why the Lord had removed people from my life. I had made mistakes of my own, and I had hard fought battles to stay in the place that I knew God had called me to serve. And when I finally got my footing back, you better believe there was a joy in my heart that caused me to sing and dance and I didn’t care who thought my thoughts were inappropriate.

I cheered David’s response to Michal:

Verse 21

And David said unto Michal, It was before the Lord, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the Lord, over Israel: therefore will I play before the Lord.

God didn’t make me ruler… He did put me into a position of leadership. Satan’s couldn’t move me from a position that God placed me in, but he tried very hard to make me walk away. David told Michal that he would “play before the Lord.”  Playing is seldom understood by those who are more concerned about how people are dressed. (for the record I’m not talking about clothing). When someone is clothed in the garment of praise, it’s often pretty radical. It’s also their own. If they choose to wear it softly, I’m cool with that. If they choose to wear it loud! O’ I’m down with that too! It’s theirs to wear, not mine.

So this blog is for someone who needs to praise and not grow weary of the spiritual fashion police. Like the woman with the Alabaster box… they don’t understand your praise.

Where to find encouragement when all else fails

encouraged

1 Samuel 30:6b

…but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.

In this portion of scripture, David’s men blame him for the burning of their village and the kidnapping of their families. His whole company has turned their back on him. Ever felt that way? Like you’ve let the world down…

For some odd reason the 1972 Carpenter’s song “Rainy Days and Mondays” is stuck in my head. I’ve read several chapters in 1 Samuel this morning (through to the end) and deed it played out in my mind like one of the greatest of all movies. I cried when Jonathan and David parted company because of Saul, I cried when Jonathan was killed in the battle with Saul, and mourned for the loss of a leader when Saul killed himself. This isn’t a story, it’s history, and the more you read the Bible, the characters truly become as family yet to be met.

I find such peace in the Word because the characters, which God inspired to be written of, are there because their relatable. Not because they’re super saints of old. They were genuine men and women of God that the Lord used to encourage us on the days that we feel less than super hero material.

So, on rainy days, Mondays and even cold winter Thursday’s I can hide myself  and find myself in the Word of God. He is such an encourager to my soul!

Color me… thankful.

The Promise of Hope

hope
In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

There is hope! I wanted to put that across every social media site this morning in big bold letters. It’s won’t be found in a lottery ticket, in the government of the United States, it won’t be found in our family, friends or your critter. If there is a giant hole in your heart you cannot fill it with money, things or other people. If someone or someone is missing you have only one hope, and that’s Jesus.

I speak from experience, else I’d not write it.

When my family lost my brother Richard, I was but a child, and a lost child at that. I didn’t understand eternity. I was brought up in church, I’d heard about Heaven, but it was nothing more than a word. A misunderstood concept. But then… Jesus.

It’s what the world doesn’t want to hear. That Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, and nobody gets to Heaven without Him. Not hearing it doesn’t change it, and not accepting it only hurts you further because He is what’s missing in your life that fills the hole you have inside. He does not replace the person that caused the hole, He simply fills the void where they are and gives a bridge to seeing them again. That was the sweetest gift in my own heart today when I thought of the people I can’t see. Even some who are here on earth…

When I ask my Mother once why she wasn’t angry with God for taking my brother at the age of 19, she simply responded “Because He is my only hope of seeing Richard again.” My Mom had found the bridge back to my brother. When my Dad passed away I missed almost everything about him, except one thing, the faith he shared with me. He had Jesus and that bridged the gap between us. I knew it was not goodbye, it was “save a place for me at dinner.”

So when I see a social media post of despair, I want to bridge that gap in their heart by telling them that I truly do care and that Jesus is their answer to the hopelessness they’re feeling inside. He doesn’t replace the person lost… He is what the song writer wrote with the words “He built a bridge with only three nails and two pieces of wood, with one rugged cross, Jesus built a bridge.”

Glory to God for the bridge that I found in 1996. Glory to God for the preacher who preached the gospel. Glory to God for the patience that God had in waiting for me to come to Him. Glory to God for there is hope on earth and peace… His name is Jesus. Amen!

Don’t Wear Someone Else’s Armor

armor

He was the runt of the litter, his brother said he was an arrogant, bad hearted, rubber necker and the enemy said he was as threatening as a stick. That’s the “Shari version” of I Samuel 17 as David is about to face off with Goliath. How on earth did he get there? Nobody had any faith in him, his Dad gave him the worst job on the farm and used him as an errand boy to find out what the real soldier boys were doing. I love any story of David, but the history of his battle with Goliath is no doubt in my top three favorite reads. By all accounts of his peers, he shouldn’t have been there. The sum of who David was is written in the words of Abner in verse 55:

And when Saul saw David go forth against the Philistine, he said unto Abner, the captain of the host, Abner, whose son is this youth? And Abner said, As thy soul liveth, O king, I cannot tell.

O king, I cannot tell… Abner had no clue who David was. But God did. The day that Samuel anointed David to be King in Saul’s stead, obviously his brothers took no note of it. Does that not strike you odd? It did me. If someone had come to my house and said one of my siblings was going to be President one day, I think I’d take note of that day. Abner wasn’t there when Samuel anointed David, so he’s excused of his ignorance, but not his brothers, they should have known there was something special about David. David was the forgotten anointed, the waylaid leader, the king in coming and nobody too note… except God!

Scripture is clear that God does not look on the outside but on the heart of man. That scripture too was from the anointing of David. Samuel looked at David’s rugged big brothers and thought surely they were king material. But king material is more looks, its being in touch with those you serve. David shows up on the battle field and hears Goliath mouthing his country and his blood boils!

That’s how I feel about America. That’s how I feel about my church. That’s how I feel about my family and friends. I take it very personal when someone is attacking my people. It’s even worse, when it is my people who are on the attack.

Goliath wasn’t one of David’s people. He was flat out the enemy. His disdain for Israel was to be expected. But David’s brothers… They may not have been mouthing Israel but they weren’t defending her either and they were mouthing their brother who was defending Israel. Unbeknownst to the brethren their little annoying brother had a King sized heart that got him noticed by the King of kings.

God’s not looking for a king but He’s still in the business of noticing hearts.

I have days, multiple lately, when I think my work is in vain. I feel like I have shown up on the battle field of life and one of my people called me an arrogant, bad hearted, rubber necker because I was on their playing field. (For the record, nobody has) that’s just how I feel. I talk a lot… and I’ve been known to say “Is there not a cause,” and be frustrated when nobody was taking off Goliath’s head.

And this morning I heard through God’s word… “I see you. Yes, you annoy the brethren. But I know your heart and I know that you want to help. But you need to spend more time defending the fold before you face the giant.”

I don’t know exactly what that means. But I know in my heart that there was a day when God anointed me to do what I do, and some took note, and some didn’t. I have a King sized heart because the King gave it to me. I can’t shut it off like a water faucet, it flows freely. Unfortunately so does my mouth.  All I know right now is, I have some rocks in my pocket but I need to be careful about where I’m throwing them.

My lesson today was this:

  • God knows my heart and sees my frustration, the people need to see the victory, not the complaint.
  • When I throw stones, I need to make sure it’s at the enemy and aim well.
  • Don’t wear someone else’s armor. God created me just the way I am. Vocal.

Fake Faith or Different?

fake faithThere are times that I wish God had not made me such a vocal, passionate soul. I only wish it for a second… and then I get passionate about something else and forget my frustration. But life would be much simpler if I didn’t care so deeply. Caring gets me and usually my mouth into trouble.

The verses I claimed for my ministry are found in Ephesians 6:19-20.

 And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

Well, there it is. How do you claim a verse like that and not live by it? If you’re the Jesus Chick, you can’t; or at least you shouldn’t. So when I get into tight places, meaning where others disagree, I try my very hardest to stay on task and biblical. I am very aware that my passion can also cause my flesh to take control.  So when given a moment of passion to defend God’s stance, I have to reflect back and ask myself, was I defending God? Or Shari?

On the subject of “Fake Faith.”

That was the subject. And it took about thirty seconds to get my knickers in a knot! I am a defender of faith not of a denomination. Let me preface this blog by saying “I am a happy Baptist!” But I’m not just a minister to the Baptist, so when I hear words of discouragement about anyone’s faith or denomination it breaks my heart. I loved it when my Pastor has said in his sermons on several occasions that we need to take a stand on what we agree on, not argue with what we don’t, in regards to denominationalism. Let me also say that those are Christ, born of a virgin, dying on the cross, raised the third day, the way, the truth the life, churches. But on the subject of worship style, you can almost get a knock down drag out argument started with anyone of faith who is also passionate about what they believe. But on the subject of “fake faith,” I personally don’t think it should ever be a part of a conversation. And yet there it was… and there I was… and by the time all was said and done, I just didn’t say anything because I knew I wouldn’t change minds and I wasn’t so sure it wasn’t going to a place that children of God ought not go. Anger.

But my knickers were still, and are still in a knot. So today I’ve decided to do what I often do and that’s talk to God and write it out. So here’s the questions in my mind: “What is fake faith and what does the Bible say about it?”

Me Focused Faith

That’s almost a cult in itself! And it’s not discriminatory of denomination. It’s the idea that your church was founded for you. You are the final authority on all things God, and if things change you should be notified in writing with a letter from God. Now I know that’s extreme and no one would confess to that being so, but they’d like it if it were possible. And I’ve met them.

Church Focused Faith

It’s akin to “Me Focused Faith,” in that people believe their denomination is exclusive to salvation. There’s just one major problem with that… the Bible is our final authority and there’s no denomination mentioned. Yes there’s doctrine, but not denomination.

Fickle Faith

It’s really not faith at all, but it’s under the guise of faith. It’s the appearance of strong faith when all is well and everyone and everything is in its place. But let trouble come into your life, or things change in the church and it’s time to move on, out of church or in search of another church that has all the answers.

Fool Proof Faith

That’s not faith either. It’s the notion that you have God figured out and there is no wiggle room. The structure of faith is having all the “I’s” dotted and “T’s” crossed. Theology is where it’s at and the notion of worship comes from the book, not the heart.

Those are what I define as “fake faith.”

What I don’t define  fake faith as:

  • Someone who worships differently than I do.
  • Someone who uses another version of the bible. (although I am a King James Version gal, and have reasoning and belief that it is the protected Word of God)
  • Someone who goes to another church.
  • Someone who tries to prove their faith too hard. (meaning that perhaps they get a little zealous about a certain person or thing in the church) It’s sometimes hard to separate our love for God’s people with our love for God.
  • Someone who gets in the flesh. (else I’d be lost)

Even the Apostle John was concerned that folks weren’t like him when he expressed those concerns in Luke 9:49

And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us.

But Jesus answered him in verse 50:

And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.

Someone who worships differently isn’t being fake, it’s being who they believe God called them to be.

I sometimes think that God made me a little weird. It’s usually when someone who’s not like me questions why I am like I am. Be very careful on questioning another’s faith or actions of faith, lest you discourage a child of God and He’s not happy.

The Antics of the Enemy

anticsIt’s a funny thing for me when the word of God leaps from the page and reads as if it were a Fox News account of the antics of today’s politicians. And so it was this morning as I read a few chapters from the book of Acts and the story of Paul (who I in no way am comparing to President Donald Trump) but the antics of his enemies are like yesterday’s headlines. And while the Bible is pure truth and the media is mingled greater with lies, it is my prayer that Christians unite and stand firm on the side of President Trump, who I believe has good intentions for our Nation, and his enemies are tools in the hands of Satan.

Paul vs. the Preachers & Politicians

As for the story of Paul, he preached and was willing to die for the very faith he had once murdered people for professing. That’s quite a bit more serious than the cries against Trumps sins of the past. But when Paul discovered the truth he was willing to stand up for what he had once fought against. And to put it in plain terms, people hate the truth. They’d rather believe a lie and live in either religious separation or rebellious liberal anti-law viewpoints than to allow a Nation to work together for the good and safety of its people. The religious leaders of Jerusalem didn’t care if people got saved, they were happy being in control of the people they had, and when they saw both Jew and Gentiles worshipping together, it got ugly. Paul went into Jerusalem in Chapter 21 of Acts knowing that there were Jews wanting him dead. They were not happy he had opposing views and through the power of the Holy Spirit had the ability to prove his views worthy of acceptation; and people were getting saved, both Jews and Gentiles alike. This angered the religious crowd into lying about Paul, and stirring up the crowds into a rebellious tirade. Sound familiar?  Dear Heavens! If Christians cannot see the hand of Satan in today’s political endeavors they are blind. The crowds attacked and beat Paul within an inch of his life until he was rescued and taken into custody by the law. Seriously? The law had to take religion into their own hands? Very much like it is in our day with Christians being censored everywhere!  In verse 34 of Chapter 21 it says that “And some cried one thing, some another, among the multitude: and when he could not know the certainty for the tumult, he commanded him to be carried into the castle.”

There was so much junk being spewed that they couldn’t tell fact from fiction. Hello? I have a feeling there was indeed a modern day CNN of biblical times, stirring with a big stick! And the people cried “kill him.” But God had other plans!

God chose to use a man who was once His enemy, to bring thousands to salvation. Can God not use President Trump to bring America back into the fold of His grace? Why do you think Satan’s got that stick out continuously?

When Paul spoke it silenced the cities because the people wanted to hear what the ruckus was about. (Acts 21:40)

I’ll say one thing, Trump has America’s ear. Every word by Tweet, news briefing or rumor mill drops like a pin in the room. This man can make a difference. He’s not perfect by any stretch of the imagination and he has said things that I for certain disagree with. But if the people of this country (who want the change to be a nation of good moral stance, and the freedom to walk not in fear of one’s faith and the blessings of Almighty God) get behind the administration and proclaim it openly, not in secret.  We could see our nation turn around again.

God would turn Israel on a dime when they turned their hearts back to Him. He would wipe out every enemy they faced without them so much as getting a hair out of place. He’s still that God. He has not changed. But this nation has.

We need to get a bigger stick people!

From Wreck to Rest

12417

Hebrews 4:12

For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

I have often heard and occasionally said the statement, “God knows my heart.” Those words usually come at a time in a person’s life when their purpose or intention is brought into question. And as a rebuttal to the doubt of another soul they will say “God knows my heart.” And I can almost hear out of Heaven, “Yes, yes I do.”

When I truly take those words to account it weakens my knees a tad bit if I dwell on the knowledge that God knows me inside and out; dividing asunder (meaning into parts) of soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It’s why my knees weaken, because when the Word of God convicts the soul and the spirit speaks to the heart, and the body reacts in kind. I told my teens Sunday that the Bible is a spiritual wash cloth, it will clean you up! But perhaps I should have also said that it was a sword to dissect your day and your ways. The word of God is amazing how it can expose what we’d rather stay covered.

I hate dealing with life. Many, many days drain me. So when I write, as I did a day or so ago on fleeing from God, I’m not blowin’ smoke. If I could get into my car and drive somewhere that God would not be, I would likely try. But that is not possible. And so I trudge on through life and daily get into His word and ask God for mercy on my soul to bring me through a dark time.

Sound dramatic? I have a feeling that the air over my head is dramatic and that there are angels battling the demonic forces of the night to keep my mind focused on the word of God. Else I’d be in the car. The spiritual world is as real as the chair I’m sitting in and this morning I can feel it. But I can also feel the Word of God slicing through the discouragement and fears in my heart to expose the tender part to words that need to be soaked in and rested in. Word like the preceding 3 verses in Hebrews 4: 9-11

There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. 10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. 11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.

Working for rest? Sounds pretty oxymoronic. But getting to the point of resting in God is most definitely work. I’ve had to unpack Hebrews 4 and repack it a time or two this morning to find my rest. I had to wrap my mind around the fact that I have to cease from my own works and rely on the works that was done on the cross by Jesus Christ. In verse 13 it says that 13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” Exposing yourself is laying everything on the table with God. He knows it anyway, but it’s putting it out there and saying “God, help me with this. I can’t do it.”

14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. 15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

God does know my heart. It’s full of infirmities (deteriorated vitality, feeble, weak of mind, will or character is how Merriam Webster described it.) I’d describe it pretty much the same way. And God says “I get it. I understand because I’ve been there and have overcome. So bring it boldly not ashamedly. Lay it out before me and let’s work on it together so we can get you to a place of rest.”

I needed to hear that today. I need to remember that God knew how very messed up I was and He chose to call me into His service anyway. But the only way to get to place of rest in my life is to rest in Him.

Satan’s Most Powerful Tool

12117Whither shall I go from the Spirit? Whither shall I flee from Thy presence?

Psalm 139:7

Sometimes I confuse myself. I know the word of God, the power of God, the compassion of God, the omnipresence of God, and above all I know the forgiveness of God. But it seems when I’m at my wits end in life, and I’ve tried my last human effort; I still have one thing left to do. RUN! And the whole time I’m running I’m thinking… “There’s no sanity in this. God is my only hope.” But do I turn back? Nope! That makes way too much since and Satan is so, so very good at what he does. Convincing me that I am unworthy, defeated, or hopeless.

I’d like to tell you that after twenty years of salvation, and greater than 10 years of writing and studying the word of the Lord I’m above it. But I’m not. When David penned the words in Psalm 139 it was an affirmation. He was reminding himself that there was no where he could go that would put him out of God’s presence. There was no part of him that God did not know. There was nothing he had done that God had not seen. Hmmm…. That explains why I run. It’s called guilt. Its likely Satan’s most powerful tool on the child of God.

He has no power to control the child of God (unless we give it to him) because we have the Savior within our hearts. A spot that Satan cannot occupy. But he is still the prince of the air, and those air waves are very disheartening. David too much have understood that when he wrote in the same Psalm (vs. 16)  “Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being imperfect, and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.

Long before God created me, He knew who I would be. He knew I would fail. And yet it says in the following “How precious are thy thoughts unto me, O God! How great is the sum of them. If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.”

That’s a humbling thing to know, that the Almighty God Who created the universe in all its splendor and has so much to do, takes time to think of me. That’s a word that the prince of the air doesn’t want you to know. He doesn’t want you to know that in the course of God’s day, whatever that might look like, I’m on His mind. I also wonder what He must have thought when I turned my back on Him.

Disheartened? No, being disheartened is to be discouraged, intimidated, downcast. None of which describes God. Here are just a few scriptures that tell us Who God is.

God’s thoughts are so much higher than I can imagine  ~ Isaiah 55:8–9

He does not grow weary, even of me! ~  Isaiah 40:28

He knows my hair better than my beautician! ~  Luke 12:7

Before I was born, He implanted His career design in me. Even knowing I would not do it justice. ~ Jeremiah 1:5

He is not partial to anyone more than me. ~  Deuteronomy 10:17

I always feel less and unworthy, both of which play into the hands of the prince of the air causing me to flee from God. When scripture tells me, I a loved, forgiven, planned and blessed by God. I hope you are wiser than I. Don’t buy the lies of Satan. They’re extremely expensive.