Submit to God; Resist the Devil and He will Flee.

resist the devil and he will flee

Have you ever felt that if one more responsibility were to get laid at your feet that you would implode? Life happens and responsibilities sometimes seem to overtake us. It leaves us vulnerable, tired, and weak, and unless we learn how to cope with the added onslaught of situations that we will be required to endure in our lifetime, we will feel forever defeated.

How often have you said, “I just can’t take it anymore!”? We are all faced with those times, but I’m here today to encourage someone with five simple words: Give Them All to Jesus.

Are you tired of chasing pretty rainbows?

Are you tired of spinning round and round?

Wrap up all those shattered dreams of your life

And at the feet of Jesus, lay them down.

Give them all, give them all, give them all to Jesus

Shattered dreams, wounded hearts, and broken toys.

Give them all, give them all, give them all to Jesus

And He will turn your sorrows into joy.

He never said you’d only see sunshine,

He never said there would be no rain.

He only promised a heart full of singing

About the very thing that once brought pain.

 Matthew 11:28
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

You may feel that you are losing control of yourself and instead of feeling peace and security in your walk with God, you have allowed things to become the enemies that you must conquer to keep your sanity. Never take on more ministry than you can support in prayer. Sometimes it’s important to step back and take a deep breath and be reminded of your purpose in doing all that you do. You may ask yourself, who is getting the glory for this? If it isn’t God, then maybe it is time to rethink your priorities.

Everything that I do, say, feel, should be filtered through God’s plan for my life. I can tell when I start to get off course in his will. I may struggle, or get super fatigued, maybe even discouraged so much that it feels that no matter how much effort I give to a task, it still seems to be empty of satisfaction. Could it be, that I am placing too much emphasis on the task, and not enough effort on the Lord who promises to direct our steps?

While rowing a boat requires great effort when you are rowing with the current, it still is not as hard as it would be, if you had decided to follow your own course, and row against the current.

God is in control of all situations even when we think that our world is falling apart. Family may reject you, friends may turn away, you may get disappointed by something someone has said that brought up the past hurts and mistakes, or you may not have a care in the world; but God is still in control and he is working out all things for our good.

What should we be do? Keep praying, and believing God. If we are wrong we must learn to forgive and make it right; if we are right in our eyes, we must still forgive and seek peace. Life is too short to harbor ill feelings against others. Do the best you can to make it right and then, let’s trust God to know what is the best for us and he will restore unto us the joy of our salvation.

open the window

In this week’s, Lattereign, we are reminded that we need to trust in God. Isn’t it Time to Put Your Trust in God

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Is Seeking the Will of God Our Last Resort, or Our First Option?

We have been told since the beginning of our lives that we must put God first in all things. It’s like the more we hear it, the more we brush it aside as one of those wise sayings that was never meant to be taken literally. After all, we have certainly changed from the time this was written, so it may not even apply to us, today. If we have that kind of thinking, then we would be terribly wrong.

Seeking God is an action and we should not sit around in a haphazard way to seek God. I promise that if life gets real enough, we will not have any trouble seeking God. Why is it that when trouble comes our way, we are quick to beg God for help, but when things are going well, we neglect to give God the time of day? Instead of building a relationship that is based on communication, and reverence, we slide into our prayer closet and offer up our wish whining to God the Almighty. I’ll take a side order of answered prayers with that order, please.

We have all been guilty of not giving enough time to prayer, even when we know that prayer is the key to unlocking the doors of our praise and answered prayers. If we want to see mountains in our lives moved, we must pray until the walls begin to crumble.

On the other hand, if we spend our time hoping and wishing for something to happen, instead of taking a step of faith and doing what we can do, nothing will ever happen.

I am grateful that I have an opportunity to seek the Lord. Not everyone in the world has that freedom to choose. Nothing else matters if we don’t get our lives in perspective. The Lord is coming soon. Instead of seeing how close you can live to the world and still be saved, why not seek the Lord first and all these things will be added to you. It’s my desire to do his will. Let’s be able to say with confidence that, “It is Well with my Soul,” as the song goes.

When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll
Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say
It is well, it is well, with my soul
It is well
With my soul
It is well, it is well with my soul
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul
My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, o my soul
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul
Songwriters: P P. Bliss / Gloria Roe
It Is Well with My Soul lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc

In this week’s Lattereign we have this assurance that if we will Keep on trusting we will overcome. Keep on Trusting-You Will Overcome

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God Chose Me? Now, What Will I do About It?

 

It’s time to assess where I am and what I’ve been able to accomplish this year, and besides material and tangible things, I wonder if what I have done this year, is acceptable in God’s sight. In all of the ministries that I am privileged to be a part of, I sometimes wonder if I am doing enough? I guess to look at it I should look at results, not the individual activities. You can be as busy for the Lord as you want to planning programs, and all of the other events that come into play with ministry, but no matter how busy you are, if you consider just the event, and not the fruit that comes from having the event, you are using the wrong measure to gauge your effectiveness.

Today, I realized that if what I am doing is not being effective, it is time to stop doing it and to be seeking other open doors. In the twenty-three years that I have been writing the Lattereign, I have had the opportunity to look long and hard at what I am trying to do. I have always loved to write, since I was old enough to hold a pencil. Even how much my personal ambitions influence my choices really doesn’t matter.

I could write enough stacks of paper to fill entire rooms, but if I stopped there and never shared it, or got it published, or kept correcting mistakes I had made, that needed to be revised, or never took a risk to be criticized for the words I chose; instead, closing the door to the room and locking it; my whole purpose for writing would die with me, never reaching one person with encouragement, or hope to keep living for God.

What a shame it would be to stand before God with empty hands. My motivation is not wrapped up in accolades, or high fives, or pats on the back for what I have written; my motivation comes when someone reads the articles, and then tells me later that they were blessed by what I shared. If I measured my effectiveness by dollar signs, I might as well stop writing, now, because anyone with business sense knows that you need capital to operate a business.

That is the beauty of being about God’s business; he is the provider. Our part is to show up and be available for whatever he has planned for us. Sometimes, when I write, I can’t get my righteous indignation under control, and it’s usually because I focus on what others may have done that wasn’t handled exactly the way that I had been taught to handle it. Do I tell the person? absolutely not. I can’t judge others and still be objective! So, I sit down to write, and what begins to form on the page? There is nothing but criticism and judgment, and before I know it, God is telling me to hit the delete key until I am once again, facing a blank page.

Humility? Yes, Reprimanded? Yes, so instead of complaining to God, I decide it is better to allow those other offenders of my way of thinking, to work out their own salvation, so God will help me to write the message that he wants to send. I find when I get out of his way, He can write some amazing stuff. Through the years, I have made many mistakes, and learned to use the equipment that the Lord provided, before the modern technology that we have to distract us so thoroughly, today, was even an idea.

No matter how advanced the technology becomes, as we move forward, one thing is certain. If I don’t commit myself to doing what I love, there are people who will never know about how much Jesus Christ loves us. He loved us enough to go to Calvary. I can’t quit now, I must continue to do the will of the one who gave his life, so we could have eternal life.

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

Your Lattereign is flawed, and that is okay, because the Lord can take broken vessels and form them into masterpieces. It is so important to share our God given talents and the gospel of Jesus Christ. The time is short, and in this week’s Lattereign the Lord is asking us: Who will tell them? who will go?

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From Hopelessness to Eternal Life: What a Difference One Day Makes

The headlines fill our minds with fear. I imagine that on the day that Jesus was taken to be crucified, his followers felt hopeless. It is only natural that they would only have seen the circumstances. They thought they knew what to expect, but they really had no idea what was about to happen, or why. Sure, Jesus prepared them as much as he was allowed, but how could they fully comprehend that their hope was gone?

We forget to trust in the gentle voice we hear inside that speaks to us saying encouraging things like—all is well; hold on; you’re gonna make it; trust in me; lean not to your own understanding; I am that I am; all things work together for the good if we love God—and I wonder, this week, have I made myself available to obey God’s will for my life?

Am I flexible when God’s will changes? His will is not set in concrete, am I ? Have I hindered his vision for me? Without change in our lives nothing can get better. If we are rigid in our attitudes or our ideas and not flexible, we will eventually die. Very little life can survive if the water is not moving. It is the moving of the water that generates power and results.
We say, Lord send a revival and let it start with me, then we sit down on God and wait for a special invitation, service, or move of God, before we can get motivated to act.

Dear Lord,

Teach me, Lord, to be a worshiper not a whisperer. Help me to trouble the waters enough to bring life to my soul. Lord, help me to be unsatisfied with a mediocre, half-hearted, approach to God. Help me to reverence your sanctuary as you commanded in Leviticus 19:30. Make me truly hungry for revival. Teach me to pray and invite revival in our midst.
Stop my own unbelief from hindering what you desire to do through me.

It’s very easy to move with the water, to move along without a vision, but it takes discipline to change direction against the current of the world. Help me to know you, Lord, and to hear your voice as you lead me into all truth. Remind me of your faithfulness. Help me choose to go against the current of the world. Teach me to trust you implicitly even when I don’t understand where you are leading me to or why.

In Jesus’ Name,

You’re Daughter, Grace

“And the Lord said unto me, write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry: (Habakkuk 2:2-3).

The Same. In every stage of my walk with God, he has been great to me. It doesn’t matter how hopeless my situation has seemed to me, at times: Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.

When I’m troubled, I can call on the Name of Jesus. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. No matter what the challenges we face in life, we can overcome them if we realize this truth that we serve a God who can not fail. He never changes. He isn’t worried about the turmoil in the world. He doesn’t fret when the storms of life come. He stays the same. He is always faithful, always dependable. He never forgets his promises.

“Lo, I am with you alway even unto the end of the earth.” We need to be reminded that we serve the one true God. He isn’t frail or uncaring. He is solid and a present help in the time of trouble.
“Casting all of your care upon him; for he careth for you ” (1 Peter 5:7).
“My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

I need to remember that the time I spend in his presence, in fellowship with him is all important. It is my desire that during the incredibly busy seasons that I remember the most important times in my life are built around being in his presence, for it’s in his presence that there’s fullness of joy and at his right hand are pleasures forevermore.

We need to be about our father’s business, true, but let’s don’t allow working for the Lord to become a substitute for prayer, worship, and spending time at his feet. Remember, Mary chose the good part, and she reaped the blessings from it. Martha was doing important things, but she left out the most important thing—sitting at the Master’s feet to learn from him. If we will spend quality time with Jesus, he will be glorified, and we’ll see the fruit from our labors, for he says our labor is not in vain. ALL IS WELL with my soul.

Yes, his followers may have felt hopeless on that day, but it only took three days for their entire lives to change. Those who crucified him, opened up the door to our salvation. In this week’s, Lattereign, we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Their Rejection Became Our Redemption

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For God So Loved the World That He Gave….

We have so much to be thankful for this morning. When the world is full of turmoil and confusion, it is good to know that we have freedom to worship a loving God who loves us with an everlasting love that no man can match. His love is limitless, and eternal. Nothing will ever separate us from his love and no matter how far we sometimes stray away from the path that he is leading us to follow, he gently calls us back to find our way. Like all humans, we are sometimes so independent that it can lead us to get our eyes on other things.

If a circumstance comes up we must attend to it immediately. We dive in to solve the unsolvable because it is in our nature to have everything in place. All of our duties are laid out before us. Our plans, our goals, our dreams, may as well be carved in stone, because we won’t rest until they are accomplished. This can pose a grave problem for us, especially when God’s will for our lives may change as we learn and grow. It is possible that we have growing pains as we find our way to maturity in Christ. Nothing ever gets in our way when we are determined to do our best, because we stay focused on what we have decided is God’s will for our lives, yet, we never really ask God if his will has changed. No, we say we have heard from God. That’s it. That settles it, when God may be leading us to a new direction with better promises; unfortunately, many times we don’t listen.

So often we see our vision, and forget that God’s vision for our lives is greater than anything we could ever imagine. We think small promises that are easily attainable and never reach beyond our comfort zone, are easier to go after than those seemingly impossible desires and dreams that the Lord has placed in our sights. Have faith and learn to trust in the Lord and to lean not to your own understanding and he will bring it to pass in due season.

All of our desires and ambitions, in the secret places of our heart, are revealed with a simple prayer of faith. You may be struggling to figure out what direction the Lord desires for you to take. It’s never too late to wait on God. He asks us to “seek his face;” and when we need answers from him, we may not find the answers we seek in any other way but by prayer.

How badly do you want to follow his will? Bad enough to make the sacrifice of praise, or to submit yourselves to authority? It may be easier to lead than to follow sometimes, but to be a good leader we must learn how to be a good follower. As the song goes,

In the things familiar we find security
Resisting all the changes that days and years can bring
When God decides to lead you through an open door
Inviting you to walk in realms you’ve never known before

Beyond the open door is a new and fresh anointing
Hear the Spirit calling you to go
Walk on through the door for the Lord will go before you
Into a greater power you’ve never known before

Hear the Spirit calling to wake the living dead
To reach the huddled masses who cry out for living bread
Arise oh mighty army, take up thy shield and sword
For the Father lifts His golden lamp beside the open door

Beyond the open door is a new and fresh anointing
Hear the Spirit calling you to go
Walk on through the door for the Lord will go before you
Into a greater power you’ve never known before

Beyond the open door is a new and fresh anointing
Hear the Spirit calling you to go
Walk on through the door for the Lord will go before you
Into a greater power you’ve never known

Where He leads me, I will follow
Where He leads me, I will follow
And where He leads me, I will follow
Into a greater power you’ve never known before
Beyond the open door

In this week’s Lattereign, we celebrate Palm Sunday. Hosanna to the King-Palm Sunday

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Random Thoughts: Practices, Promises, and Priorities

Practices 

You may have heard it said that practice makes perfect, but that is not entirely true. It is more correct to say that, “Perfect practice makes perfect.” We can spend our lives doing the same things over and over, making the same mistakes over and over, and never go beyond the abilities that we have. Our weaknesses become stronger instead of our faith, and we wonder why we can not grow in the Lord. It may lead to frustration and ultimately we convince ourselves that we must have misinterpreted what the Lord called us to do, so we feel defeated and inadequate and never reach our full potential in Christ. The only reason is because we are listening to the wrong voices, but not the Master’s voice, who says that we can do all things through Christ.

It is good to get in the Word and learn what it will take to fulfill the will of God for our lives.

“Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:4-7).

Promises

Whether there are 3000, or 7,000 promises in the Word of God, one thing I know for sure; their fulfillment in our lives is dependent on our obedience to God’s word. If we are lacking in obtaining the promise of God in our lives, it may be that we have not fulfilled our part of the equation to release its fulfillment. So as a rule, I must stop blaming God when those things I desire do not materialize. Have I listened? It takes me a long while to have the light bulb moment where I figure things out. Consider this: it says to “Study to show yourself approved;” but if I don’t study, my GPA will plummet in short order, every time.

If you do desire to have the peace of God in your life, you must stay in the word and do what it says in Philippians 4:8-9:

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you (Philippians 4:8-9).

Priorities

I want to take better control of my time. It seems that lately I’ve been consumed with demands on my time, yet I feel that the best that I can give will never be enough unless I make the time to put God, worship and family as top priorities.

When all is said and done, the time that I give to my priorities will matter ten years from now, and I won’t be just scratching my head woefully considering where the time went. Those things that remain in my life, will have lasting value to me.

March 15, 1995, I decided to do what I could do, because what I thought I wanted to do, God said, “No,” for a season. He has restored some of those desires, but I’m glad he set me on the path where I could be used more effectively. If God hadn’t said, no, to my will, the Lattereign would never have been started. I am learning that God knows the plans that he has for us: Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth” (3 John 2).

And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat, and the body [is more] than raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest? Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more [will he clothe] you, O ye of little faith? And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Luke 12: 22-34).

Lives in Perspective. Only God can be all things to all people. The rest of us need to realize that we are not supernatural. Learning to decide on what is a priority that will be needed, versus something that sneaks into our lives,  to try to derail us, robbing us of time, is my greatest challenge. Do I dare to admit that I have a hard time saying, no? I’m not speaking about the things that are priorities in my life, but of the random things that gobble up “free” time. (Is our time ever free?) The older I get, the easier it is becoming to choose my chores and to put life, and living it more abundantly, in perspective.

After much prayer, I had this epiphany: It is better to do one or two things well, than it is to do ten things poorly.

I have learned that I can’t sacrifice the permanent on the altar of the immediate, in other words never take on more ministry than you can adequately support in prayer. I heard that at a conference some years back, and it has taken up residence in the back of my mind for all of these years.

In this week’s Lattereign, we are encouraged to cast away our fear and just believe that God’s promises are true. Fear Not Believe Only

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It Only takes a Little Light to Make a Big Difference in the Darkness.

It is impossible for us to be in darkness if we are following Christ because he is the light of the world. Even on the darkest of nights a tiny match will bring light to the dark places. I remember when we lived in an old house that still used a light bulb that was suspended in the middle of the room with a chain on it, so if you forgot to turn the light on before dark, you had to search for it with your arms outstretched. It was hit and miss at times, but what a blessing it was when you found the chain. It didn’t take long to illuminate the entire room and all was right with the world. All of your imagined “monsters” vanished with the pull of that chain.

In this hour we are still searching for that light that gives a peace that passes all understanding. The world is a dark place at times, but rest assured, we can seek Him, lift our hands in worship and find the light that brings us comfort and assurance that even though the darkness is still out there, inside of our souls there is light.

Not everyone knows about this light, and they choose to block it from their sight, for to seek after it may require a commitment that they are not willing to make. When my hour was the darkest, I realized that there was no hope for a change until I made up my mind that I was willing to surrender all.

As the song goes:

All to Jesus I surrender
All to Him I freely give
I will ever love and trust Him
In His presence daily live

All to Jesus I surrender
Humbly at His feet I bow
Worldly pleasures all forsaken
Take me, Jesus, take me now,

I surrender all
I surrender all
All to Thee my blessed Savior
I surrender all

All to Jesus I surrender
Make me Savior wholly thine
May Thy Holy Spirit fill me
May I know Thy power divine

I couldn’t fight it any longer, and I knew that I wanted to be a winner. Too long I wandered away from the light into utter darkness, and too long did I live my life hoping that something would change. I knew what it was like to serve a living Savior, and I knew what sacrifices he made for my salvation. How could I do anything less than my best to serve him? He brings light but the world has a tendency to look on us from a dark place and they don’t always see that we are highly favored. They may even be angry with us for no other reason than we have changed.

In this week’s, Lattereign, we realize that it is only through God that we have this light. He makes all of the difference. God Will Enlighten my Darkness

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Everything we Need is All in Him; His Grace is Sufficient

If we focus on current events we may get discouraged, and maybe it seems that no one is in control, but never forget that our lives are designed by our creator. Every step we take, every decision we make, every triumph we experience, every heartache we endure, every tear that we shed, every ounce of joy unspeakable and full of glory that we feel, is recorded: and God knows what we have need of before we even ask.

Don’t think for a moment that you are alone on this path you are called to walk on. The Lord promises to never leave nor forsake us. He will be with us, always, and when the load gets too heavy for us to bear, he carries us. It says in 2 Corinthians 12:9 that his strength is made perfect in weakness. The more vulnerable we become, the stronger our Lord becomes. We must trust him to work out all things for our good.

Not every obstacle we are faced with will be easy to climb over. Sometimes it may require us to chip away at the obstacle in prayer, second by second until we can eventually clear the obstacle from our path. More often than not, the obstacle will not go away with just prayer; it will require an action from us to tunnel through it, which isn’t always easy. We will need to stay committed to our purpose, if we want to have the victory over our adversaries. It will require more than a quick thirty second prayer before meals, or on the way to our car before work, to have the tools needed to break down strongholds. We can’t afford to miss out on consistent effectual prayer.

Waiting for others to clear the pathway may sometimes work, but the most efficient way to get back on the right path is to exercise our faith, and keep moving forward. You may find that the way seems to get darker rather than lighter; you may hear the thunderous storms raging in the distance, and be afraid to get any closer to the danger, yet, the Lord has promised that he is the one who can still the storm, so you keep moving and doing what you know to do to be a good witness. I have found that when I look forward, I don’t have time to look back at what might have been.

What might have been? I was lost and dying under the curse of sin. When the Lord saved me, he gave me hope and a future. We live in troubled times, but we have a promise and a God who loves us, and he is asking us, in this week’s Lattereign:  How may I help you?

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I Don’t Need the T-Shirt or the Bumper Sticker: They Know What I Stand For.

There is nothing wrong with wearing t-shirts with Christian sayings on it, or the bumper stickers that tells us things like, “Honk if you Love Jesus”; however, if you take away all of the gimmicks and advertisements, will people still see that you belong to Jesus Christ? We should put on a garment of praise, for the spirit of heaviness. Does what we wear bring glory to God, or is it a distraction for others? If we are to continue to grow in the church, we must trust the Lord to direct our steps.

5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart: and lean not unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil.
8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.
9 Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the first fruits of all thine increase:
10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.
11 My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of his correction:
12 For whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.
13 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding” (Proverbs 3:5-13).

We have no other options but to trust God if we want to succeed in this life. Trust may be a tall order for us when the world continually batters us and whittles away our confidence, rejection by rejection. It’s easy to trust God when the blessings are an abundant flood; it’s not so easy when your world seems to crumble beneath your feet and you struggle to stand. We make our commitments and say our prayers and praise a God who is faithful. He spoke the world into existence, and we were planned long before we were conceived in our mother’s womb.
It is his good pleasure to bless us, but is he pleased with us? Is our worship genuine or do we sometimes go through the motions with a distant heart that aches for something that we don’t understand?
As a Christian, I should be setting an example for others. When I walk into a room people should know that there is something unique in me. I should reflect the image of Christ. This perception isn’t a result of the clothes I wear, or the way that I walk, although my attire should promote godliness and modesty. It is something deeper than that.

It is a commitment and a peace that passes all understanding. It is knowing that I know that Jesus Christ is the same today, yesterday, and forever and that he changes not. This world may be unsure but we can have confidence in a Savior who understands what we have need of, and when we don’t understand, he provides the Holy Ghost to pray for us.

I used to pray for material things: now, I have learned to pray for God’s will. Help me, Lord, to trust in you, honor you and serve you even when I don’t understand. Peace be still.–

In this week’s Lattereign, we are reminded that It’s the Time of Harvest.

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In the Floods of Life; Will You Drown, or Ride the Wave?

It’s time to start over, again. You see, I know it may come as a surprise, but I’m not perfect. I make mistakes. When I try to do the right thing all the time, I confuse myself. When I try to be perfect, it puts insurmountable pressure on me, because perfection is an unreachable goal. No one is perfect, except Jesus Christ. He was without sin. Considering that this is true, and it is, will you please tell me why we are always beating ourselves up when we do make mistakes?

Satan is the accuser of the brethren, so isn’t it just like him to twist our thinking enough that we would accuse ourselves. That’s bold. We can walk around defeated, or we can choose to believe the report of the Lord. What is his report? As the song goes,

Whose report will you believe? We shall believe the report of the Lord. 

His report says, I am healed!

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved: for thou art my praise. (Jeremiah 17:14)

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)

His report says I am filled!

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. (Matthew 5:6).

Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled. Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh. (Luke 6:21).

And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness. (Acts 4:31).

Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God. (Philippians 1:11).

His report says I am free!

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:32).

If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. (John 8:36).

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:2).

Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. (Galatians 5:1).

His report says victory! 

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 15:57).

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (1 John 5:4).

To believe his report will absolutely set us free to live the life that the Lord has chosen for us to live. When we do make mistakes, it isn’t the end of it all; it can be a learning experience, a time to regroup and by all means, to keep pressing toward the mark of the prize of the high calling of God. He is more than enough to live for. When the enemy comes in like a flood, I have a choice to drown, or to ride the wave. Eventually, I will find solid ground again; and if not, I can trust him to know what is needed to reach it.

Sometimes in our walk with God we may be so far out in the wilderness that we are unable to find our way back to civilization. Again, we do have a choice. I am tired of stumbling and skinning my knees, but I refuse to stop walking, because to stop is just as dangerous as turning back. If we quit fighting our way through in prayer and fasting, we will never reach our victory, and we become easy prey for the enemy of our soul, satan.

When I made up my mind to serve the Lord, I didn’t expect to always have an easy path to follow; but what I knew to expect is that the Lord has a path for me to walk on, and if I would just trust him and keep walking , eventually I would reach the other side of the rough spots, because he promised to never leave me or forsake me. Quitting was never an option. I knew what that was like, and believe me, I may have to crawl at times through dark places and over treacherous mountains, but I made up my mind a long time ago that no matter what, I would never look back if the Lord would forgive me.

He promises in Romans 8:1, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” When I was lost, my life was empty. There was a void that could never be filled without Jesus Christ. I can now drink freely from the wells of salvation. I can sleep peacefully at night, knowing that God loves me.

Yes, we live in troubled times, and not every day is blissful, and lacking in challenges; however, now, I know that when those days come, that I don’t have to face it alone. God is my refuge and strength, a very present help in the time of trouble, as it says in Psalm 62:7: “In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.”

In this week’s Lattereign, we are reminded to not give up. Shall we return with Empty Vessels?

“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14).

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