I Choose to Trust You, Lord.

Sometimes, life isn’t fair, and that’s okay if you can take the time to look at the big picture. Sometimes, I have even questioned God and the path that he chose for me to walk on in this life. It really isn’t always the pie in the sky kind of feeling serving the Lord. There are times in our walk with the Lord that our vision and expectations for our own life are so far away from where we are at, that we wonder if we’ll ever reach our destination.

If only we could turn back the time to before we made a bad choice so we could change it; unfortunately, life doesn’t always allow you to have a rematch. Once the china is broken, you can repair it, but there will always be the constant reminder of the time that you broke the china. You will find visible scars that show how it was glued back together again. Saying that you’re sorry doesn’t always fix mistakes.

That is why we have the Lord to forgive us. When we are forgiven, the Lord completely removes our sins and loves us, unconditionally. Yes, we present the broken China to the master, because it’s the best we have, but if we are forgiven, then, we can hold our head up high and  praise the Lord for his goodness to us.The Lord is faithful.

We all have choices to make, and I am thankful that one of the most important choices I have ever made was deciding to follow Christ.  In this weeks’ Lattereign, we examine, Courageous and Consistent Faith.

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Hidden Treasures Will Never Reach Their Full Potential

Considering all of the material possessions we own, there is one item that is rarely used. It looks as beautiful as the day that we were gifted it when we were married over thirty-years ago; yet, I can count on one hand how many times that we have eaten off of our wedding China. We have kept it stored for a special occasion, and over the years it has filled our China cabinet: some pieces are on display behind the glass doors, but the majority of it is carefully preserved in soft zippered carriers made especially for China.

I was thinking about it the other day, and the question came to my mind, “What are you waiting for? Don’t we deserve to use it? If not, why do we hold on to it? If you think about your own treasures, I’m sure you could name many items that are packed in boxes that you may have forgotten even existed. They are there for such a time as this, waiting to be picked up and put to use.

Not only do we have material treasures that are never used, but we also have talents that  we have allowed to be pushed back into the recesses of our mind, just waiting for the proper time for someone to unearth the gifts that the Lord has given us. Sometimes, we think that it is impossible that the gifts we have could be useful for us, and others may require some of our effort to bring to full potential. I can say all day long that I want to be a writer; for example, but if I never pick up a pen, or sit at a keyboard, my desire to write will never amount to anything useful.

We get so focused on the unreachable goals we set for ourselves, instead of building  up our skills until we can reach the ultimate goal for everyone which should be to do the will of God. Doing the will of God requires our commitment to put one foot in front of the other. We can’t expect that the first step that we take will be the one that reaches the top of the mountain we must climb; no, it may take many baby steps and maybe even some steps backward before we can reach our destination.

The key to reaching any destination is to just keep moving forward. When you make missteps in the learning process, if you start moving again, just move forward. At times in your walk with the Lord you may look back and wonder how you ever reached this point in your life, because from your viewpoint, you made so many mistakes, and you tripped up, and fell down, and bruised your knees, and maybe even, at times you didn’t think that God was even listening to your heart’s cry.

Crying that you did in silence, so that you would not disturb others, or be faced with all of the questions that you couldn’t explain–the pain you were feeling. Tears that were stored up in heaven for lost loved ones; and yes, the occasional pity parties, because you have felt so inadequate at times that you really didn’t expect good things to happen to you; after all, you make mistakes. You are the one who is supposed to be perfect and have all of the answers even when deep inside you are just trying to do the best you can to live for the Lord, day by day without feeling inadequate. That burden was never meant for you to carry, so why do we insist on holding on to the hurt of the past, instead of giving it to the Lord? The bible tells us in Romans 8:1-2:

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

I don’t have to feel the condemnation that I once felt, because I am a daughter of the King of kings and the Lord of lords, and Satan can’t tolerate children of the most high reaching peace and contentment. It’s time to shut out the voices that tell us we will never be able to reach our full potential, and to hear the voice of the Lord that calls us to prosper and be in good health. Finding our way out of the darkness into his marvelous light should not stop when we are saved. It should perpetuate throughout our walk with God so others might know him.

If only we could trust the Lord to know the plans that he has for us. The treasures that we acknowledge, may be the ones that lead someone to Christ. We should learn to appreciate the blessings that he so generously bestows upon us, so that we can give to others. It’s time to unpack the China and set the table.

12 Jesus saith unto them, Come and dine. And none of the disciples durst ask him, Who art thou? knowing that it was the Lord.

13 Jesus then cometh, and taketh bread, and giveth them, and fish likewise.

14 This is now the third time that Jesus shewed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead.

15 So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.

16 He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

17 He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep. (John 21:12-17)

No matter where you are on this journey, you can always be a light. In this week’s Lattereign, Thoughts on School Prayer we look at prayer in the schools. No one will ever be able to stop it from happening in the schools as long as there are people who need to reach out to the Lord.

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Impossible Doors Will Open, When You Believe!

“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” (Luke 12:29-31).

No weapon that is formed against me will prosper. If I can keep this in my spirit, I will overcome every situation that is before me. We must not back down to challenges that will make us stronger in our walk with God. I can have confidence in the Word. I’m not walking through the fire alone, No, Jesus is leading me through the fire and I am not forsaken. Oh, it may seem like there is no way out, but if I’ll just cling to his hand, and keep moving forward in faith, I will eventually see the battle that I was so fearful of has become part of my past experience.“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11:6).

“I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill but time and chance happeneth to them all” (Ecclesiastes 9:10-11).

The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong… In spite of my failures and shortcomings the Lord is leading me. It doesn’t matter that I’m not as popular, skilled, or talented as someone else: the fact remains that he has chosen me to fulfill his purpose for my life. When I am weak, he is strong. He always causes me to triumph because he loves me and he sends his ministering angels to keep me protected from the enemy.

He desires that I prosper and be in good health. The Lord doesn’t cause sickness or heartache: SIN causes sickness and heartache. If you cure the sin problem, any other challenges will be manageable as we learn to trust in the Lord and let him fight our battles. The Lord doesn’t cause death: SIN causes death. There will be no more dying when we have a glorified body. “Forever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven” (Psalm 119:89).

We must learn to be sensitive to God’s spirit when he moves in us. He will prepare us for the challenges we face because he knows that we need to be strengthened to sustain our spiritual walk. It may be a word from the Lord that urges us to, “seek [His] face.” The word of God may seem to jump off of the page at us, at times, “my grace is sufficient for thee.” Or, it may simply be that He promises us, “He that putteth his trust in me shall possess the land, and shall inherit my holy mountain” (Isaiah 57:13).

He’s speaking; are you listening?

The Lord loves us, and don’t think for a second that he isn’t fully aware of our situation. He already has a solution that is based on his will and where I may only see a vale of darkness, the Lord promises that his word is a “…lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105). We must keep trusting him to light the way, because our next step of faith may be the one that leads us to the victory that we are searching for in him.

In this week’s Lattereign, we discover that the Lord is well aware of every situation that we face, and he encourages us to keep moving forward, Beyond the Open Door.

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Lift Up Your Eyes Unto the Hills

“I will  lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep” (Psalm 121: 1-4).

“The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore” (Psalm 121:5-8).

One of the greatest lessons that we can learn in our Christian walk is how to trust the Lord. When trouble comes we need to be keenly aware of whom to turn to. In Psalm 121, the bible tells us that we can find the help that we need. To be able to find the help requires us to lift up our eyes. That doesn’t seem too difficult a requirement; unfortunately, it becomes quite a challenge when we get buried in circumstances and trouble engulfs us. We can’t see through the problems, especially if we try to handle things on our own.

If you can trust the Lord enough to look above your circumstances, you will find that you have given control back over to the Lord. I’m guilty of holding on too tightly to my problems, because if I let go, I think I have failed not only myself but God also. It’s important to remind myself to turn to the Lord, no matter how discouraged I get. I need him, and I acknowledge that without him I can do nothing. While in the midst of trouble, if I allow the Lord to lead me through the storm, I can have peace that passes all understanding. Those who fail are the people who are unwilling to allow God to reign supreme in their lives. If we are constantly pushing and shoving to be the best, the first, the most noticed, the most vocal, the “I” of the church, then we are setting ourselves up for failure and disappointment.

The bible says that the first shall be last and the last first. It doesn’t matter who is first, what really matters is if we are called according to his purpose and if we are redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. It is not by might, nor by power, but by the Lord’s spirit. I am thankful that the Lord never sleeps. He keeps us around the clock. Why should we fear?

If you have felt alone in your walk with God lately, don’t you think it’s about time that you look up? The Lord is with you to help you and keep you safe from harm. He will preserve you from all evil and he will preserve your soul. Trust him and you’ll find peace at last.

“Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain” (Psalm 127:1). 

In this week’s Lattereign we must be willing to continually be available. It is a blessing when we can proclaim: I’m  About My Father’s Business.

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I Surrender All of my Dreams, Plans, and Life to You, Lord.

We serve a great big God. How often do we try to confine him into our boxes of doubt? We pray and say that we trust God with our lips; then we ponder our situation until we can’t think of any thing else but the problems that grow bigger as we feed them. The more we nurture our problems, the greater they become and the more desperate we become. Sometimes it clouds our vision until we can’t see God working to bring us through to our good. “My grace is sufficient” he said and sometimes God, who is sovereign, decides to let us keep the thorn in our flesh. . He’s still God.

“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” (Luke 12:29-31).

Scripture after scripture reminds us of God’s provision and love for us, yet there are times when we still don’t comprehend that he really does love us. Are we so hardened by our circumstances that we can’t feel his love? Have we been so beaten down in the daily grind of living that we are unable to allow the warmth of his presence to wash over us and soothe our souls? It’s time to let God into our lives.

“O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him” (Psalm 34:8).

“Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way because the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass. Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil. For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth” (Psalm 37:3-9).

It is true that I will get discouraged if I don’t stay in the Word and find the strength to hold up my shield of faith. The shield of faith and the breastplate of righteousness will protect me from the fiery darts that try to steal my joy, kill my dreams, and destroy my walk with God.

He promises us that if we’ll delight in him that he’ll give us the desires of our heart. If we have not fulfilled our part, why do we think that God would give us our deepest desires? It’s time to restore our commitment and to do what he commands for us to do: Rest in the Lord. I am convinced that the Lord has my life in his hands and that every step that I take is ordained by God.

“I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart” (Psalm 40:8).

“And now, Lord, what wait I for? My hope is in thee” (Psalm 39:7).

“I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.

O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.

I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears (Psalms 34: 1-4).

This week’s Lattereign lets us know that it’s time to be Committed to God’s Purpose in our lives, and when we learn to do that, then there’s nothing that can stand in our way of reaching God’s full potential.

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Our Call to Prayer is Today.

“After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6:9-15).

If there ever was a time to pray it is now; if there ever was a place to pray, it is here; today is the day that the Lord has given to us. We can’t change yesterday, and we can’t live in our tomorrow. We only have been given today to do our best.

What will you accomplish for the Lord, today? Will you give him your wholehearted praise and worship? Will you be a cheerful giver from the abundance that he has blessed you with? Will you give him your time? When you do go before the throne of grace, will you be waiting for him with your wish list of demands?

Have you placed your order for the miracles that you want him to perform? If you have, are you willing to perform what the Lord has called you to do? If you will have faith in God you really can move mountains, but before the mountains will fall you must back up your prayer with unconditional obedience to God’s Word. If he has called you to sacrifice your time, then you must do it, before you can release the Lord’s blessing into your life.

When we live a life of obedience to God’s word, we can come before the throne boldly. In Hebrews 4:16,  “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”

As we come into his presence, we can worship him with a clean heart and a renewed vision for his will and purpose for us. Never will our prayers be mere rote or memorization. They will not be a spiritual exercise, but they will take on a new dimension, one of power and purpose. When we learn to get honest with God and truly give our lives and our wills over to him, our relationship with him will grow stronger. The more we yield our self-will over to his will, the greater revelation of Jesus Christ we will experience. Without total obedience to what he has called us to do, we’ll never reach our full potential in Christ.

How can God trust us if we don’t pray? Every time the trials come into our lives, we should be thanking the Lord for trusting us; when the answer comes, we should give him all of the glory, honor, and praise due unto his precious name.

In this week’s Lattereign, we are reminded that the Lord still has everything under control. He will not leave us without hope; he is ever faithful to stand by our side or even carry us through every situation. God will renew our strength

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If You can Only Believe…

 

Since I was a little girl I always enjoyed looking up into the sky and I often wondered did it ever end. Our eyes can only see so far and we are limited in that respect, but God sees and knows that we are important to him. We matter to God enough that he sent his only begotten son Jesus Christ to die on the cross and be raised again for our salvation. I desire to understand just how much love he has for us, but I can’t even begin to fathom that depth of love, because I am limited by my own vision.

Then I think about his vision for us. Doesn’t he have greater plans for us than we could ever imagine on our own? He is waiting for us to be ready to receive his goals for our future. Are we ready to allow faith to rise up in us, instead of fear of the unknown? We can speak faith all day long, but until we really take hold of what that means, and believe it, we will miss the whole point that God can do anything! “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

Anything is possible if we believe. It’s a fact that we have learned the art of limiting God. No matter what we are faced with, we have a choice to make whether we will believe God or not. I have experienced God’s provision and healing power. I have cried out to him during some of the darkest times of my life when I felt alone only to realize that God had never left me or forsaken me. It was a choice that I had made to walk away from where I belonged. The choices we make in life have consequences, and at the same time, if you are a child of God those consequences can cause us great victories as we learn to lean on the Lord and to trust him. He is faithful to me, even when I question him, and at all times will his praise be in my mouth.

The Lord never promised that life would always be easy, but no matter what, He promises to be with us.

Today’s Lattereign, offers hope to people who may be struggling, remember: God is Still on the Throne-It is Well.

 

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It’s Time to Let the Lord Fight Your Battles.

It’s about trust. Trust in the unknown. I wish I could say that I always trust God fully in everything and that I never try to make things happen on my own behalf. It’s like a bull in a china shop, this life of trusting God. No matter how much I pray or believe when the flesh gets in the way, I fumble around and begin to doubt God and his promises.

I know that God is well able to meet every need, but Lord, I pray that you help my unbelief. Try as I might I don’t always let God control my life. I have to get in the way. I have to be in control of everything and it is impossible, I have since discovered, to let go of my control, so that makes it a challenge for the Lord to direct my steps. He is always in control and he doesn’t forget to guide me through in spite of my issues.

The Lord knows what lies ahead and we would be wise to follow his lead and stay on the right path. One misstep could open us up to attack from the enemy that if we had but trusted God and obeyed his voice, we could have been protected.

Never in my lifetime have I know the Lord to turn his back on me when I humbly sought his face. He is longsuffering of all of my imperfections, and the bottom line is I need God. Not only when times are challenging or there is trouble on the horizon, but when times are wonderful and I am living in his blessings.

I have a choice to make: to be cursed or to be blessed. Ultimately it is my decision to live for God, and to be honest, I really do desire to live in his blessing. The blessing will overtake us if we learn to listen to the voice of the Lord. It says in Deuteronomy 28:2, “And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God.”

Isn’t it time to stop fighting your battles alone and allow the Lord to fight for you? I am ready to just listen to God’s word and let him take control:

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

In this week’s Lattereign, we learn to trust in the Lord and hide Under the Shadow of His Wings.

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Whatsoever Ye Shall Ask in my Name, I will do it

Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth, I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his Lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain that whatsoever ye shall ask of the father in my name he may give it you.” (John 15:14-16)

Here I am, Lord, on a journey that leads me beyond what I can see.

I’m the one who has a plan that is safe and secure, but not your will.

You lead me away from myself to a place in you where all I can do is trust. There is no logic in this path I take; by man’s standards it’s destined to fail, but you have a plan that is greater than I, although I don’t fully understand. Why would you, God, the Almighty, take away all of the treasures that I dearly hold on to, and require that I be willing to lose them? It doesn’t make sense, while the darkness enshrouds me, and the storm is raging all around me; I will trust you, God, because you promised that if I’d seek your face early, I’d find you.

I feel so lost on this journey I must take. There’s no one who can save me, but you. I try to remember to wait on you, Lord, because every time I have needed you before, you came; yet, once again, I find myself asking, “Where are you, God?” I desperately search, not knowing if the next step will cast me away into utter despair, but I keep walking deeper into the darkness, believing that you are leading me through. I can’t lose hope, so I will keep on trusting in you and have faith that you will bring the victory as a result of my obedience. I know that you have never left me, Lord, but I sometimes feel alone…. (This was written during a dark time in my life; yet, God saw me through it.)

How often have you felt lost?  It seems that just when we are ready to give up completely, God steps in to rescue us. When we feel the warmth of his presence, we can rest assured that he hasn’t abandoned us, but he is moving heaven and earth to lead us through to victory. Not all of the roadblocks that we are facing are to prevent us from having good things, in life. Those obstacles are there to channel us to the destination that the Lord desires for us. When we don’t understand, remember that God has everything under control. He is working all things for our good.

Have faith in God. Let God lead you into all truth and just allow yourself to trust him. The Lord is everything that you need.

In this week’s Lattereign, we are reminded that God’s grace is sufficient.

I Must Believe that His Grace is Sufficient

 

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Hold on to God’s Mercy and Truth

“And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed” (Mark 1:35).

It is good to pray together because there is strength when two or three agree in prayer. It is good to capture fragments of time within your busy day to talk with Jesus Christ, the bible says to pray without ceasing. It is also good to come together in worship and praise, “Enter into his gates with thanksgiving and into his courts with praise; be thankful unto him and bless his name” (Psalm 100:4). However, there is more to learn.

Although we have the best of intentions—to grow closer to the Lord—committing to obey the Lord in every area of our lives is one of the most challenging obstacles facing Christians today. We’re overscheduled and undernourished in the richness of fellowship with Jesus Christ. Before we were inundated with technological advances in our society, people actually carried on conversations. It was commonplace for families to gather on the back porch or outside even under the stars to talk. I remember sitting out on the porch until way after dark, and I promise we didn’t run off to our rooms in front of a video game or computer screen.

Times have changed; but, God has not changed. I’m thankful that we can gain the victory over our time in prayer. There is nothing that can separate us from the love of God, and he’ll never leave us nor forsake us. Are we hungry for his presence? It’s time to separate ourselves into a solitary place of prayer. All of our day to day dilemmas can be eradicated if we learn to use our weapon of prayer.

It’s his desire that we spend time learning to listen to his voice that will speak peace to our souls. Relationships take nurturing. If we neglect to pay attention to the most precious gifts that the Lord has given to us, we’ll miss out on some of the greatest blessings. Too often, when the glory of the Lord arises in our lives, we’re too preoccupied to embrace it and let the light of God’s love shine into our soul.

We may ask God for his anointing and for direction in the decisions that we must make; but too often, we do our own thing, and then expect the Lord to get us out of trouble when it doesn’t work. Thankfully, he is merciful and understands that we are like sheep, so he helps us to find our way back into his will and presence.

I have heard it said that our time—two hours and forty minutes of every day—belong to the Lord. This time is usually spent getting to church or studying a Sunday school lesson, or even writing the Lattereign. When I step back and see it through the Lord’s perspective, I find that I’m guilty of not spending enough quality time with Jesus. I’m BUSY being a Martha, but the Lord desires me to be a Mary, and to sit at his feet and learn of him.

In this week’s Lattereign, we are encouraged to keep holding on to God’s mercy and truth.

It Seems Like it Was Only Yesterday

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