My Father reminds me this morning of an activity that I used to participate in when I was a young girl in school. All of the kids in my class were divided into two teams and each team took hold of opposite ends of a long rope. There was a mark on the ground between us and the goal was to pull the opposing team so one of their team members crossed over the mark which brought their loss in the competition. This activity was call “Tug of War.” This is a sport that is actually played all over the world that puts two teams against each other in a test of strength. My Father has laid it upon my heart this morning that as Christians, we are constantly involved in “Tug of War” activity with the enemy, the Devil. His Word spoken to me this morning says that in the last days, there will be scoffers of the Lord Jesus who will follow their own ungodly desires. They are those who will divide us, who follow their natural instincts and do not have the Spirit of the Lord. In an effort to win this war, Our Father tells us the importance of building ourselves up in our most holy faith and praying in the Spirit, keeping ourselves in God’s love as we wait for His mercy to rescue us from this life into eternity. Being on our Father’s winning team, this means being a part of His team – being in relationship with our Father and other Christians, reading His Word (the Bible) and praying for strength to win the battles that we face that tug on us to cross over the line to the enemy’s side called sin. As we do, did you know our Father is helping us win and cheering us on? Yes, it is true! His Word tells us that His Spirit helps us in our weakness. We may not even know what to pray for, but the Lord’s Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. Our Father understands our struggles as He searches our hearts and He knows the mind of the Spirit because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will which is that we win over the enemy! Oh, I can hear that in my mind as I visualize our team tugging and tugging to win the battle between the flesh and the Spirit’s desires and our Father’s Spirit groaning as He helps us fight the fight to win over the enemy. As our Father’s cheerleader, I say to you this morning “Come on team, let’s win! Let’s tug, tug, tug and don’t give an inch to the enemy. We can do this. It will be a blessed time when at the end of the war, we can do the victory dance and reap the rewards of our efforts to apply strength for our Father’s winning team! Woohoo! It’s gonna be fun and victory will feel so sweet. Be strong. Keep going! So many need us!”
Hi, there. I’m lovin’ doin’ Thursday with ya’s! In my world today, I am worshipping my Father for all He is. What this world needs is more of Him and His love. He IS love! As His kids, His Word encourages us to be imitators or models of Him. The power that we need to do that is from His presence (Holy Spirit) that lives in us as believers. To love in accordance with His will, we are called to love our Father first with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind and then we are to love our neighbors, especially fellow believers, as our self. Paul wrote to the Thessalonians with the prayer that our Father would enable them to have “increased” love that would overflow to each other and to all people as well. He also let them know they were loved by himself and his team. It is God’s Spirit in us that enables us to love God, ourselves and others as we ought to, including giving us strength to not grieve His Spirit in us by giving in to willful sin. Walking in obedience to our Father’s ways that are His best for us, is our best way to be filled to overflowing with His Spirit’s loving power. Have you ever had the experience of putting soap in a bucket and seen how the soap suds can increase and bubble up and over the top? Well, this is how I see it with our Father’s Spirit producing the power in us to be love. We are the vessel (bucket) and with added soap (cleanliness of walking in obedience to His ways) and His living water (Holy Spirit) filling us up, we’ll have plentiful suds(power) to overflow with love. I have to say this just gets me all bubbly! I definitely wanna be a suds in the bucket kind of gal with His living water filling me to overflowing. May there be bubbles of Godly love oozing from each one of us so none of us are a luv suds dud. Much love to ya’s! If I say that, is that a bubble of love?
1 Th 3:12; Mt 22:34-40. Jn 14:15-31; Eph 1:13, 4:30, 5:1-2,15-18; Gal 6:10, Ac 2:1-4, 4:23-31, 1 Jn 1:8-10, 4:7-21, Ps 19:13, Is 41:10, 2 Ch 16:9
Good morning to you! As I gaze upon our Father’s Word today, it is on my heart to write about the importance of putting off our old self which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires and to be made new in the attitude of our minds – to put on the new self created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. This is a message we have all heard before, meaning our old self is the sinful nature that lives within us, for which Christ died on the cross. This old nature within us misleads us from God’s ways and cheats us from seeing life at His best. Our Father mentions “attitude” of our minds in this passage. The attitude of our old self is one of worry, complaining and grumbling. Upon believing, He has placed His Holy Spirit in us to help us live our new self, to be like Him that is not anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, presenting our requests to God. And then the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. “Attitude” is something we can all struggle with and a bad attitude is certainly something to work on. I like to think about it this way: When our attitude is bad, we need to think “going to the car wash.” Say what? Yep, I said “car wash.” After all, we are God’s vehicles, so to speak, that carries His Spirit that carries the Good News along the road of life. Our vehicles have a tendency to collect dirt and be unclean (due to our sinful nature). As a result, the view through the front window (our sight) can become clouded over so that we do not see well the way of the Lord. This calls for the need to hose off with His living water (the Spirit in us), to apply the scrubbing bubbles called “Gratitude” as you follow the Word instructions (the Bible) so as to dissolve away the muck of our sinful attitude and then, use prayer wax to help guard (our mind and heart) and the cleanliness and shininess of Him in us (the new self) will be the result. We can then head out onto the road of life with peace of mind and His ride into the world through us will represent Him well. I’m thinking toting a good amount of change is a good thing to do. How about you? See ya on the road. I can do that well with a clean window (a Godly view)! Eph 4:1,22-24; Php 2:14-16, 4:6-8; Mt 6:25; 1 Co 3:16; 2 Co 5:20-21, Ro 12:2
It’s Friday with our Father everyone! Whoohoo! What a treat to go through this day with Him! As we join Him in His Word today, we see Him in the temple sitting opposite the place where the offerings were put and He watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts, but a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins worth only a fraction of a penny. Calling His disciples to Him, Jesus said “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth, but she out of her poverty, put in everything – all that she had to live on.” Wow! Can you imagine being in church and Dad watching to see what you put into the plate knowing what He has given to you? Yikes!!! I’d want Him to be proud of me for what I give. As I think about this story and giving my ALL to Him, the thought that comes to me is that more than ALL of my finances as a sacrifice, Dad more than ALL desires my whole heart devotion to Him. He says to love Him with ALL my soul, heart, mind and strength. I think the widow in this story modeled that and also what Paul said “I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Jesus Christ, my Lord, for whose sake I have lost ALL things. I consider them rubbish that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law (sacrifices), but that which is through faith in Christ – the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.” God’s Word gives us guidelines for giving, but Dad says He loves a cheerful giver and does not want us to give out of compulsion. If you have to beg someone for them to give you a gift, it isn’t really meaningful is it? If we love God with ALL our heart, His love for us and our love for Him compels us to give. Our Father has wisdom and can guide us each individually in giving as there are many reasons He provides for us, including providing for our families. To return to Him a portion of what he gives us is honoring to Him as the source or giver of ALL that we have. When we are seeking oneness with Him, He will give us the desires (motivations) of our heart. He will move us to will and act according to His good purpose. How He moves one heart may be different from another. In light of ALL of this, I ask you as I ask myself “Are ya ALL in for Jesus?” Trust in Him to guide you and if He so moves you, put your two coins in or leave your two coins out, or put yer five coins in and pass the plate around, do the giving Hokey Pokey as He moves your heart about – loving Dad’s what it’s ALL about! Dad bless y’ALL!
Mk 12:30, 41-44; Php 3:7-9; 2 Co 5:14-15, 9:6-15; 1 Ti 5:8; Php 2:13; Lev 27:30; Ro 12:1-2