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Archive for the month “June, 2012”

What is Peace?

Have you ever said, I just need peace! or I don’t have peace!? If you are a Christian then I will admonish you and tell you that you have peace!

What is peace? What does the word peace mean to a Christian?

Jesus said to us in John 14:27: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

Peace is a power word for us as Christians. It means to be whole, complete, in harmony with God, ourselves and man, order in our lives, unity, goodwill, prosperity, well-being, full, nothing missing, impaired, or damaged.

How often we let the enemy of our soul, the devil steal, rob, encroach upon our well-being, our peace. Sometimes we don’t allow the Holy Spirit to do a full work in our lives.

Colossians 3:15 says, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”

What does “let the peace of Christ rule” mean? Rule means sit as umpire there, govern and control. Let the peace of God rule, judge, or umpire all our human passions and emotions such as anger, wrath, revenge, anxiety, restlessness, bitterness, dissatisfaction, discontent, disputes and questionings of our heart. God says bring all unruliness under the control of the Word of God, that we might walk in order, meekness, long-suffering, forbearance , forgiveness and prosperity. By letting peace rule our hearts we will have tranquility in the face of turmoil, calmness in the storm, faith in the good times and the bad.

“Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:7

Beloved, if you are a Christian and do not feel like you have peace, ask for prayer from trusted members of your church, seek God and see if there is something you haven’t surrendered to Him, be obedient to what He asks you. Keep your mind on the Lord!

“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” Isaiah 26:3

Do Not Be Afraid!!!

 

 

 

Has the Lord ever asked you to get out of your comfort zone? Do something that is unusual? Make a complete lifestyle change? Go into the ministry?

What did you think about? Did you feel fear and wonder what would happen? I think most of us would weigh out that kind of decision, perhaps be fearful, wonder if we were doing the right thing?

What about Mary and Joseph? What did they think or feel?       

When the angel Gabriel came to Mary, he said in Luke 1:28, “…Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

Mary didn’t doubt that she saw an angel but she didn’t jump for joy either. She knew God was asking something from her.

Luke1: 29 says, “Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, Do not be afraid, Mary you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be the great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.

Mary realized the consequences of saying yes to the Lord. She was a virgin and everyone would think she was impure and had committed adultery. Joseph probably wouldn’t marry her and she might very well die from being stoned as was the custom at that time. Her reputation would be ruined and there would always be gossip if she didn’t lose her life. Yes, this decision was life-changing and would have serious consequences.

The angel encouraged her though and said do not be afraid! God will take care of you. Mary said yes, Praise the Lord! Even though her life was totally changed, God blessed her. “God has blessed you above all women,…..You are blessed because you believed that the Lord would do what he said.” Luke 1:42b and 45. (NLT)

Joseph also was ministered to by an angel in a dream. The angel also told Joseph to not be afraid, Mary was with child by the Holy Spirit and to go ahead and marry her. Joseph was obedient to the Lord and took Mary as a wife but had no sexual relations with her until after Jesus was born.

Who knows what was said about this couple, the innuendos, the gossip, the persecution they faced throughout their lives? They didn’t know the future but said yes to God probably when no one else supported them or even understood. They had faith that God was in control and whatever happened, He would take care of them. They knew that life would not be without trials but to say no to God would be rebellion. They loved God too much to say no.

Mary and Joseph were greatly blessed then and we are greatly blessed now by their surrender to the God’s will for them.

Whenever, God is speaking to you, things look impossible and you say “Who am I that You could use, I am no one, I am the unlikely, I am poor, a woman, not smart enough, strong enough, good enough?” Remember, the Lord knows what is ahead, what is needed and He is in control.

Do Not Be Afraid!!!

Astray?

1 Peter 2:25 says, “For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.” (NIV)

The word astray can mean anywhere from led into  error and sin, to be deceived or as severe as to fall away from truth and become a heretic.

Astray can also mean to wander or roam about. Sometimes we as Christians don’t fall from truth, we don’t fall into sin and error but we do roam or wander. We get away from the express calling of God on our lives. Many times it seems right at the time to follow a certain path, to perhaps get caught up into the work of our ministry and stop following the heart of God.

We humans are so very fallible, like sheep we lose sight of what God had intends for us. I read a well-known minister’s statement about his ministry and the myriad changes in it. His ministry had grown large and prosperous. He was doing good works and reaching a lot of people. He wasn’t in sin or error but had lost sight of where God intended for him to go. God stopped him one day and said you have strayed from what I have called you to do. So God took him back to His original mandate for this minister’s life. God didn’t condemn this minister, He directed him. That minister just grew in in love, grace and Christlikeness through the obedience to God’s will and purpose for his life.

If you feel like you have failed, strayed, lost sight of God’s express will for you, ask God to help you get back on the right path. Our God is compassionate and loving. Jesus knows our wants, wishes, desires and the many dangers to our souls. He is our Shepherd, He feeds us, guards us, directs  and is there even when we might take the wrong fork in life for awhile. He lovingly tends to our hurts, scratches, wounds, binds us up and carries us when we are weak.

How to return to the Lord and His express purpose for your life?

Paul says in 2 Corinthians 3:18, “We all, with open face beholding as a glass the glory of the Lord”.

Behold the Lord’s glory! Enter into devoted, focused worship of the Lord. It means fixing your gaze on the Lord. David Wilkerson said, “It means deciding, I won’t move from this position. Before I do anything else, before I try to accomplish a single thing, I must be in God’s presence.” Yearn and long to be in the presence of God. Lay on your bed or walk around your home, just spend time opening your heart to God. Many times all you need to say is, “God, I need you!!!”

The Lord will direct you, comfort you, lead you, give you insight. He is your Shepherd and the Bishop of your soul! God loves you!!!

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