I Corinthians 13:11-12 (NLT)
When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.
Raising three little girls, there is a little thing called modesty that has been an ongoing challenge to instill in them. They live completely transparent lives quite comfortable in the skin the Lord has given them especially our youngest who firmly believes that she came into the world without clothing so it is completely optional when walking through the house. Her innocent mind does not understand that modesty on her part is for her own protection. On any given Sunday, the question reverberates “Mom, can you see through this?” Thankfully, the young ladies are beginning to grasp the concept of modesty somewhat. Modesty is nothing more than having a little decency in behavior, demeanor and dress. It is a consciousness of exposure needed among young women and men today. It is impossible to clearly see the Plan of God outside of faith or the relevance of living by faith in a world that has clearly chosen hell as a desired destination. God knows us completely. He sees right through every single person of His Creation. He knows our innermost thoughts and desires and longs to reveal the true condition of our heart to its owner as well. We see things imperfectly. We cannot see the Lord, touch Him or smell Jesus so we have trouble determining His Reality or Relevance in our life. We think our love is genuine and faith is true but is it? It is not until we see ourselves and the world in which we are visitors through the Eyes of Jesus Christ that people will ever gain the clarity needed to live in fortified faith and confident hope.
James 1:22-24 (NLT)
But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like.
We see the Image of God in His Word that defines our creation. God made us in His Image. Believers have the potential to live in the Inheritance as His Children based on this very fact. His Kingdom affords luxuries and blessings for all of humanity without reservation. However, too often we walk away from the mirror that is the Word of God and forget Who we look like. As God asked man in the garden, He calls to us now. Who told you? Who told you that you were naked? It was the author of all lies who works day and night to steal the prosperity of all God’s People. He wants to destroy your life. The enemy loathes God’s People and wants them to die. (John 10:10) I have friends and family who have lost loved ones who forgot who they were. Raised by Christian parents, they turned and walked away from their heritage and the enemy stole their life away. Heartbroken parents and orphaned children filing into courtrooms to face the vessel of destruction who has torn out a piece of their life. Families torn apart by the intruder who has come knocking and someone let him in. You have rights as a Child of God. You have the ability to claim those privileges at any time because of Jesus Christ. But we must see through this world into Eternity, claim our Identity as Child of God and use it as a hedge of protection around our life living in the Presence of God.
Matthew 11:5-6 (AMP)
The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed (by healing) and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up and the poor have good news (the Gospel) preached to them. And blessed (happy, fortunate, and to be envied) is he who takes no offense at Me and finds no cause for stumbling in or through Me and is not hindered from seeing the Truth.
When John was in the darkness and dampness of imprisonment, he did what anyone would do? He asked the Lord if He really was the One who the prophet foretold. Are you really Him? Jesus sent these words back to John. Blessed, happy, fortunate and to be envied are those who take no offense at me and finds no cause for stumbling. The blind will receive their sight. The Word of God is a lamp for our feet. (Psalm 119:105) It allows us to see through the darkness of this world including the sin that shadows our heart to the Light of His Amazing Love. We must be drawn to the Light like a moth to a flame. It is important to continually keep our eyes on the Word of God to prosper our soul rather than simply looking in it like a toolbox to fix something that is broken. Yes, God’s Word has the Power to heal, renew and restore you. But you must find yourself in God’s Word first or it does not apply to you. If you do not take on the Mind of Christ and work to maintain it, you will find that you have somehow wandered into darkness again. God’s Word is also described as sharper than a two-edged sword that rips through our pride and exposes the contents of the heart. It is the only way to see God’s Truth unhindered and the very thing that will keep us from stumbling back into sin once again. We are all vulnerable to sin until we meet Him face-to-face and are redeemed. Until then, we must choose to remain focused on the looking glass of life provided us in the Word of God choosing not to turn to the right or left less we are deceived.
Colossians 1:15-17 (NLT)
Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him. He existed before anything else and he holds all creation together.
A change of perspective is desperately needed by the church today. Coexistence with God is not our goal. Coexistence is based on tolerance for the differences in each other. Righteousness is the goal of those who seek the Face of God. Righteousness demands a change of heart and mind to accept and live in the Perfect Will of God, His Way according to His Word. There is no compromise in such a position but we have created one. We call it the middle of the road or gray area of life. It is manmade and not of God. It is not the provisional resting place of grace because believe it or not – God still hates sin. The Lord has given us two distinctly different choices – life or death. The choice is made by a personal decision to pursue good or evil. You cannot have it both ways no matter how many times you repent. Repentance by definition is feeling deep sorrow and remorse for our sin and turning from it. Instead the church today has taken its sins wrapped it generously in beautiful paper called grace and refuses to acknowledge the stench that is permeating from it. God still smells it. He sees right through the carefully constructed façade and is determined to show you what is wrong so that you can repent, turn from sin and fully claim the Inheritance of Blessing that He has for those who are called by His Name. We must look through Jesus Christ to find ourselves. It is in His Image that people are created. Yet we continue to try to make Jesus look like us, act like us and be like us. Nothing could be further from the truth. But until we know the Truth, we will never be free.
I Corinthians 2:15-16 (NLT)
Those who are spiritual can evaluate all things, but they themselves cannot be evaluated by others. For, “Who can know the LORD’s thoughts? Who knows enough to teach him?” But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.
Through repentance and salvation, believers are given the Mind of Jesus Christ as a vital asset that allows us to evaluate all things from a spiritual point of view. In the last few years, my vision has declined dramatically. The eye doctor confirmed my worst fear that old age is upon me and my eyes are feeling its effects. I have been prescribed glasses to wear when I read. But when I choose not to wear my glasses, I cannot read and squint desperately to make out the words. At first, the change was small enough that with a little straining I could make out the words. But now, it has progressed so that when I do not wear glasses – I often make the wrong choice, buy the wrong size, add the wrong ingredient, make the wrong assumption based on my inability to see. However, when I look through the magnified lens as prescribed I can see everything. So why not wear glasses all the time? Good question! Sometimes they are not right next to me, or I have left them at home. Other times, it is a matter of vanity. There are any number of reasons that I may not have them on but I am responsible. It is up to me to do what is necessary to enhance my vision so that I can make the right choices and be effective. You may think that is stupid and lazy. Well, I agree with you as I often pay the price with a resounding headache from my lack of attention. What’s your excuse? We have been given the Word of God and filled with the Spirit of God to evaluate all things through the Mind of Christ, yet we still choose darkness and sin over the Light of His Amazing Love. This is the reality of the life of most Christians today. Who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to teach others? We have the Power to understand all things so why not use it?
2 Corinthians 4:6-10 (NLT)
For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.
The Lord’s Love for you is the most jealous kind. Jesus doesn’t want you to live in darkness anymore and has given you everything you need to prosper in the Light of His Love. We are but fragile vessels that have a great treasure inside. You will be broken if necessary to allow such overwhelming love and power to come pouring out in your life. He will allow you to be pressed, perplexed, hunted down, knocked down and even through suffering if that is what it takes to get you to take another look in His Word and see who He created you to be. The Lord sees clearly our actions even when we choose to ignore our own fate. (Proverbs 5:21) God will allow your whole world to fall apart so that you may live in Eternity with Him. This world has nothing for us. Our own cleverly designed existence will never get through the Gate into His Presence. We must continually remain crucified with Christ and stop nailing Him to the Cross over and over again through passivity and ignorance. (Acts 3:13-15) It is not up to us to evaluate our life and decide what to give back to God. We belong to Jesus Christ. God desires to bless you. Prosperity begins with your soul. You cannot see your soul unless you live in the Word of God according to His Spirit. He will take everything away to heal and restore you. (Matthew 21:12-14) Remember that when all hell is breaking loose in your life, and it will bring you back to the Light. The Lord will use a crisis to produce conviction in the heart of mankind and reveal the true contents of one’s heart. Faith cannot grow in fear. Righteousness cannot flourish in sin. Holiness is for the godly. When you look in His Word, what does it say about you? When you look within your heart, is there darkness there? The Light of His Amazing Love is available for those who live a see through life. Seeing life through Jesus and seeing ourselves in His Word and choosing to believe what we see and live by faith that He is able to make us into that person day by day, glory to glory.
I Peter 1:13-14 (NLT)
So think clearly and exercise self-control. Look forward to the gracious salvation that will come to you when Jesus Christ is revealed to the world. 14 So you must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then.
Have you thought much about your walk with Jesus Christ? Have you evaluated your appearance when He looks right through you? When my daughters ask if I can see through what they are wearing – they are pursing modesty. They are seeking a covering. In this world filled with high skirts and drooping drawers, I am so very thankful for children with a degree of modesty. It is uncommon and not of the natural world. Jesus Christ is our covering but few care about holiness, godliness and righteousness that allows others to see His Goodness and Grace in our life. We try to come to the Lord filled with sin and darkness but wrap it with grace and tie it in a bow called religion. We leave frustrated and confused not knowing who we are or what our purpose really is because yet again we have to come to the Lord not caring what He sees in us. It is time for believers to know the basis of faith and live according to its description as God prescribed it long ago. He is ready and willing to make all things new but the façade you have been living in must give way. This will require humility including gut-wrenching, heart-searching, tear flowing repentance because everyone will be shocked at what they fine. This journey to perfection is a lifelong process until met with the reality of forever. No one is exempt. God has revealed His Plan to all and through all creation. “For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night. So be on your guard, not asleep like the others. Stay alert and be clearheaded. Night is the time when people sleep and drinkers get drunk. But let us who live in the light be clearheaded, protected by the armor of faith and love, and wearing as our helmet the confidence of our salvation.” (1 Thessalonians 5:5-8) You are a Child of the Light. Jesus Christ lives inside of you. He is ready, willing and able to make all things new. Are you willing to look at your life through the Light of His Love? Live a see through life transparent before God and you will be blessed with an armor of faith and confidence in your salvation. Your soul will prosper and you will, too!
Isaiah 43:18-20 (NLT)
“But forget all that—it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland. The wild animals in the fields will thank me, the jackals and owls, too, for giving them water in the desert. Yes, I will make rivers in the dry wasteland so my chosen people can be refreshed.”
Romans 1:16-17 (NLT)
For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile. This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”
I started reading a book by Dr. Jerry Grillo entitled, “Pray for Rain – A Cure for Drought and Famine.” He will be speaking at our church soon and I was intrigued by the promotional video he sent to encourage others to come. Within the first few pages, I discovered a simple sentence that is working its way through my mind, changing my thoughts and becoming imprinted on my heart. “You must be the right person in the right place at the right time.” I know so basic one would think that it is human logic but when believers choose to live by faith they find life every single time. Faith is demonstrated by living right. Belief is manifested in its impact on our choices. We should live what we believe. If we have faith in God, our life should be defined by righteousness. These three “rights” have the power when linked to faith to change the outcomes in our life dramatically. Your life is not just some act of random reproduction. Your parents may not have planned the pregnancy but God did. He created you with purpose before you were conceived by your mother. Your destiny is defined by God’s Plan not the details of your existence once you make an appearance on planet earth. You were created by an Eternal God with Eternity placed deep inside your heart. (Ecclesiastes 3:11) Too often we would rather believe we are a victim than destined for victory. Victory will require taking a stand and fighting some battles in life. But if we assume the role of victim, it is no longer a requirement to assume full responsibility for the outcome. The Lord has promised those who live by faith will find life. Who doesn’t want the promise and blessings of God? A lot of people. Sound crazy? Look around. We live in a world where people love the darkness more than the Light. (John 3:19) But for those few who decide today to be the right person in the right place at the right time, they will find life.
Galatians 5:4-6 (NLT)
For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God’s grace. But we who live by the Spirit eagerly wait to receive by faith the righteousness God has promised to us. For when we place our faith in Christ Jesus, there is no benefit in being circumcised or being uncircumcised. What is important is faith expressing itself in love.
Now before someone goes off and gets all religious, let’s establish the foundation of righteousness. No one can make themselves right with God no matter how hard one tries. The only way that we can be made right with God is by faith in Jesus Christ. When we call on the Name of the Lord, we are given His Spirit to come inside of us. At that moment, our sinful nature no longer has power and authority in our life so our faith can be productive. Remember – we all have a measure of faith hidden inside. (Romans12:3) Now it can begin to grow and thrive as our sinful nature is crucified with Christ. It is a new beginning received by faith alone that allows us to be in right-standing and close proximity to God once again. No one is born righteous. (Romans 3:10) Jesus Christ is the only way for a person to be saved and become righteous – the ONLY WAY. (Romans 4:23-25) Once we have accepted the Gift of Salvation and receive the Holy Inhabitation of His Spirit, we are now able to live a righteous life. A life of righteousness begins and ends in the freedom of choice. Each day we choose to remain righteous or return to evil. Every single thought culminates in a choice to do the right thing or not. When we choose to obey God, we have decided to live a righteous life. (Romans 6:15-16) Serving God is a position. (Romans 4:4-5) Later you will see how important this position is when it comes to the fulfillment that you desire. Salvation is the foundation of faith. But most people do not die at the threshold of an altar, but return to everyday life. Your life does not have to return to normal. Righteousness allows us a supernatural life living in the outpouring of God for His Children. The problem is we choose to return to our old life rather than building a new life on our newfound faith. Faith without works is dead. (James 2:17) If you want to benefit from the Kingdom of God, it requires residency. “Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. (Ephesians 4:23-24)
Deuteronomy 6:25 (NLT)
For we will be counted as righteous when we obey all the commands the LORD our God has given us.
Salvation should have an impact on the choices that one makes in life. Salvation in and of itself is a choice that should produce a ripple effect in every other choice made in our life. It is not an exclusive act but inclusive of our entire being. It is not a means to an end but rather a life choice to love and serve the Lord. You cannot serve someone you are not close to. Service is an act of trust through submission. Logistically, you cannot serve someone who you are not in close proximity to either. God is not interested in a long-distance relationship or Internet dating. God wants a face-to-face relationship with His Children. (Psalm 17:15) Obedience is required to be called righteous. Grace does not excuse a person from turning from sin and seeking to serve the Lord. Grace allows us to do so unhindered. Righteous people love justice. (Psalm 11:7) If you have chosen to Call on the Name of the Lord, it should have a righteous impact on your life or what’s the point when you can continue to live in sin according to your flesh? You don’t have to be saved. Oh, that’s right. We want the blessings and promises of God. We want Eternal life. But some of us are not willing to position ourselves to have it. Salvation is based on repentance. It is a change of heart. To be the right person, we must turn from evil and do good. It is a consistent turning of our heart and life back to God. This is righteousness. In order to have all that God promised and receive the outpouring from the Windows of Heaven as promised, we must be the right person. Jesus Christ re-established righteousness with God for all people. It is up to us to maintain it by faith. Most people will agree on this point, but there is more…
Matthew 6:33 (NLT)
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
Not only must you be the right person, but you must be in the right place. Seeking the Kingdom of God may not seem like a monumental task until you read the rest of this life-changing verse. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else. Now my friends, this is a game-changer for some people as faith requires some energy. A farmer cannot plant a seed without some exertion along the way. Repentance requires an energy investment by turning from our wicked ways. You mean I have to do something? Yes, I do. Live righteously. It is not enough to claim to be righteous through Jesus Christ, but we must choose to be consistently and uncompromisingly righteous to remain in fellowship with the Lord. No one who puts their hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the Kingdom. (Luke 9:62) Not my words, but the Words of Jesus Christ. Those who choose to stay righteous by serving God every day above all else will be properly positioned under the Windows of Heaven. Jesus Christ must be the One Thing that we seek above all else and our dwelling place should be His Presence. (Psalm 27:4) This is a personal choice. No one is ever shoved into the Presence of God. We are given an invitation that is to be accepted. Acceptance will require righteousness. Righteousness is a pursuit. (Proverbs 21:21) We must seek His Kingdom more and more each day with more enthusiasm, energy and investments such as time, talent and treasure. We must discern where we are and get back on course to living in the Presence of God to experience a full measure of His Blessing. (Hosea 14:9) It is not enough to say we are saved, but we must live what we believe. For those who invest time and energy in proper positioning to be in the right place, God will level paths and make their way straight. (Isaiah 26:7-8) But it is not a placid position, but one of pursuit. (Ezekiel 3:20-21) God is moving in our life, working every detail for our good. We must follow Him. For those who choose righteousness as a dwelling place, they will find peace. (Isaiah 32:12-18) Righteousness will keep us firmly in place even in the midst of the storm. (Isaiah 61:3)
About those storms of life…think about Noah. He was found to be a righteous man. (Genesis 7:1) He found favor with God because of this very fact. This would save his family and loved ones but did not stop the rain and flood from coming. Righteousness did not prevent hardship but tested Noah’s faith. What would be his response after hearing the screams of dying people, living in a boat with his entire family and a menagerie of animals for an extended period of time, and starting from scratch all over again? Noah worshipped the Lord. (Genesis 8:20-22) He was blessed. Do not be deceived the storms in life are preparing you for the outpouring God has for you. It is not punishment or neglect at the Hand of God but rather preparation for His Promise to come. Hold your position of faith. Do not be moved by the wind or rain. Remain anchored in right standing with God because the best is yet to come. Remember the warning to Cain, the enemy is indeed on your doorstep hoping you will decide to flee from the Presence of God and return to your old life. (Genesis 4:6-7) Don’t do it. Hold fast your confession of faith because the Windows of Heaven are opening.
Ephesians 1:9-11 (NLT)
God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure. And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.
You must be the right person in the right place AT THE RIGHT TIME. Timing is everything with God because we works on the basis of fulfillment and satisfaction. He will not release anything in your life that you are not ready for or will obtain maximum benefit from. In a world filled with counterfeits and substitutions, it is difficult to wait on the Lord when there are so many things that produce immediate gratification. Righteousness requires waiting on the Lord. You cannot escape the need for endurance. Why? Endurance produces faith. We must have faith in God to be saved and even more to have everything that the Lord has promised that requires confident hope. Hope is for the things that we cannot see, but wait for God to send. Rest assured there is a time for everything. (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8) Everything is working together for good for those who love the Lord and are called according to His Purpose. (Romans 8:28) Think about the many things that comprise your life, now picture God putting all the pieces together so that every facet of your life will be blessed. This going to take some time. Not only is He working on the good stuff, but the bad things as well. Nothing will be left out in His Completion Plan for your life. Endurance is needed because timing is a factor. (Romans 5:3-5) You will have to wait for it or you will miss it. Patience is a necessity in this process. (Hebrews 10:35-37) Do not throw away your confidence because of a little storm or mighty hurricane. God is working on your behalf. There is no delay. You are just going to have to wait. God is always right on time. “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” (James 1:2-4) God’s Goal for your life is completion and perfection. Anything less would be called compromise. Compromise is a human choice to stop waiting on God and accept less than God’s Very Best.
I John 3:7 (NLT)
Dear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous.
There are many men and women of faith in the Bible who received the promise because they remained righteous. You must be the right person in the right place at the right time. Righteousness is the choice to live in the Presence of God. It is an uncompromising position that will wait for God’s Best. It doesn’t mean that there will not be some storms in life. Into every life a little rain is going to fall, maybe a lot of rain. In fact, there will be stormy trials in this life as God prepares to pour His Glory out in our life. His Presence will be our refuge and strength that allows us to hold our position no matter what may come our way. God wants to bless you. He loves you like a hurricane. Passionate, fiery love that cannot be quenched by rain and flood but carries us through it all safely into the blessing that He has waiting on the other side. The choice is always ours. As for me…I choose to be the right person in the right place at the right time. Just be right! Leave the rest up to the Father who withholds no good thing from His Beloved Children.
Psalm 84:11 (NLT)
For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.
Psalm 128:1-4 (NKJV)
Blessed is everyone who fears the LORD, who walks in His ways. When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you. Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the very heart of your house, your children like olive plants all around your table. Behold, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the LORD.
Who doesn’t want to be blessed? Where is the choice between blessing and cursing? The problem is not making the right choice but living according to the one that we make. I have a revelation today. Jesus Christ is not Santa Claus. There is no jolly man in a red suit that gives gifts for nothing. Each gift labeled “Santa” has a generous donor on the other side who paid the price to give the receiver such a blessing. Jesus Christ died to set man free to inherit the Blessings and Promises of God. There is now a choice to make because before there would be no blessing only death in our future. Now just as when Adam and Eve lived in the Garden of Eden there is the power to choose and live according to what we choose in life. Will I choose blessing or cursing today? I guess it all depends on what I want more. Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord. Those who walk in His Ways in careful obedience and continuous righteousness can have everything that God has promised by faith in Jesus Christ. It is that simple…or is it. Why do people have such difficulty making the right choices in life? It is all delineated in God’s Word with careful instructions on blessing and cursing and the difference between the two. Many will blame the devil for their mistakes but this is false. As Followers of Jesus Christ, we walk in victory because Jesus overcame the world and everything in it. So now what is our excuse? Could it be we just don’t want God’s Blessing at all? Maybe it is not as enticing as the things this world is offering which are tangible and touchable immediately gratifying? In order for us to desire the Blessings of God enough to become desperate for them and be willing to do anything to have them – they must be worthwhile.
Deuteronomy 11:26-28 (NLT)
“Look, today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse! You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the LORD your God that I am giving you today. But you will be cursed if you reject the commands of the LORD your God and turn away from him and worship gods you have not known before.”
Each and every day in life, people are given the opportunity to choose between a blessing and a curse. Even those who claim to be Christians still must make this choice. Obedience leads to blessing. It will require endurance by faith as what you are after may take some time. You may not be able to see, feel, or touch what is coming, but by faith you can claim it. The world in which we live is alive, vibrant and in living color. God’s Word is in black and white. Blessing or cursing…what will it be? How bad do you want it? Is His Blessing in your life worth anything today? Only those who hunger and thirst for righteousness will have the will power and self-discipline to open the windows of Heaven. What is your choice today? Those who desire the Blessings of God must turn from evil and do good.
Psalm 21:1-6 (NKJV)
The king shall have joy in Your strength, O LORD; and in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice! You have given him his heart’s desire, and have not withheld the request of his lips. Selah For You meet him with the blessings of goodness; You set a crown of pure gold upon his head. He asked life from You, and You gave it to him—Length of days forever and ever. His glory is great in Your salvation; honor and majesty You have placed upon him. For You have made him most blessed forever; You have made him exceedingly glad with Your presence.
David was far from perfect, yet he was a man after God’s Own Heart. (I Samuel 13:14) When the Lord becomes our heart’s desire access is granted to an inheritance in Heaven. To seek the Lord’s Blessing – we must seek His Face. Salvation is the starting point of God’s Blessing in our life but it is not necessarily the “and it came to pass” place. Salvation is the beginning of a love affair with God that will include many different phases as it grows, develops and matures. Salvation should joyous. Are you glad that Jesus saved you? Or was it merely an attempt to steal His Blessing? Did you enter this covenant with false pretenses? The Lord knows the truth but do you. He is not looking for a marriage of convenience but a fiery passionate love affair with His Beloved Bride. A love as strong as death. (Song of Solomon 8:6) Those who choose to do more than venture down and altar shaking the hand of a preacher and hugging the nearest deacon are the ones who will receive His Blessing of Goodness that was promised. Length of days are promised to the righteous. Salvation will be their glory as God is magnified in their life. He is a doting Father ready to lavish His Impressive and Extravagant Love on His Children. We find the Blessings of God in His Presence. Only those who call on the Name of Jesus Christ and become followers of the Lord will ever find such a place. Repentance realigns us when we make the wrong choice allowing us to step immediately back into righteousness and be blessed. “So rend your heart, and not your garments; return to the LORD your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness; and He relents from doing harm. Who knows if He will turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind Him—a grain offering and a drink offering for the LORD your God?” (Joel 2:13-14) They will be blessed.
Psalm 24:3-6 (NLT)
Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD? Or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation. This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him, who seek Your face.
We are called to be a generation of Jacobs who seek the Face of God. Jacob understood the importance and significance of his father’s blessing and stole it from his brother, Esau. In the Old Testament, the father would bestow his blessing and inheritance on the first born son. Since Esau was in fact the firstborn, the blessing belonged to him until his brother and mother plotted to take it from him. Esau was heartbroken and distraught because he understood all that was lost when Jacob received the blessing of Isaac instead of him. He begged and pleaded with his father that surely there was a blessing left for him. (Genesis 27:37-40) If the Children of God would come to understand the significance of the Blessing of God for their life, they would pursue it as Jacob and mourn its loss like Esau. However, unlike Esau, we are the sons and daughters of a God who is no respecter of persons which means there is enough inheritance for us all. Jesus Christ secured our inheritance when His Death allowed His Blood to wash away our sin the one thing that kept us from being God’s Children and having everything God promised. There is a secret blessing hidden in Isaac’s words to Esau, “it shall come to pass, when you become relentless that you will break his yoke from your neck.” Comparing our life to another including the blessings and promises creates a yoke that weighs us down with fear of lack and unfairness. It is a problem that will keep us from the Promises of God for our own life as we want what others have creating jealous envy. The Blessing of the Lord makes one rich and adds no sorrow with it. (Proverbs 10:22) Remember these words and Esau, the next time you begin to want what others have and seek the Kingdom of God. Keep your face on His Face at all times and you will not lose your way! ”For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Galatians 3:26-29)
Deuteronomy 28:1-2 (NKJV)
“Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the LORD your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God…”
Abram was given a promise by God when he was 75 years old. (Genesis 12:1-3) He had to decide if the Lord’s Blessing was worth having because it meant leaving the comfort of his home and following the Way of the Lord. The Blessing would manifest in his life when Abraham was 100 years old but that was not the fulfillment. The fulfillment would come years later on the mountain moments after the Lord stopped him from sacrificing his son, Isaac. (Genesis 22:15-18) Abraham would wait over 25 years for fulfillment. He would remain righteous faithfully following the Lord every step of the way even when his dream seemed dead and Sarah’s womb closed. God made the way just as He had planned it and exactly as He promised to do. Most of us have trouble waiting 20 minutes for the Lord to move, so 20 or more years is absolutely out of the question. What is your blessing worth to you? How precious is salvation? Over those many years of waiting, Abraham became God’s Friend. He remained righteousness because he believed by faith that whatever God was doing was worthwhile and invested his whole life to have it. What are you willing to invest in pursing God and His Kingdom? Your inheritance awaits you. Are you going to choose to go after it or remain in your lack? Deuteronomy 28:4-14 is an overview of the many blessings God has in store for those who choose to be blessed and not cursed. To the ones who decide to remain righteous and pursue God, they will be blessed in too many ways to list just read it for yourself. The righteous are covered in blessing. (Proverbs 10:6-7) It literally overtakes them. You cannot steal from the Lord committing your life to His Service as a means to take what is not yours. (Malachi 3:9-10) But those who choose obedience and righteousness will in fact have the Windows of Heaven opened over their life and His Blessing will rain on your life. All you must do is remain in its overflow that righteousness affords. “For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.” And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.” (Hebrews 6:13-15)
Ephesians 1:3-6 (NKJV)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
God has already decided to bless you. He predestined you to be His Child. He sent Jesus Christ to formalize the adoption so we could be justified from sin and allowed to partake in the inheritance that He has prepared for His Beloved. Do you want your inheritance? Legitimate children are blessed by such an endowment. God chose to bless us. Have you chosen to be blessed? As Children of God, we must seek His Face relentlessly and remain in right standing with the Father. We must choose good over evil to remain in His Kingdom. There is no sin there so liberal grace is to be applied as we strive to be faithful, obedient children and thus open the Hand of our Father in our life. He will withhold no good thing from you. He loves you. God’s Blessing is worthwhile.
Psalm 84:10-11 (NKJV)
For a day in Your Courts is better than a thousand. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness. For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD will give grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
Isaiah 28:9-10 (NLT)
“Who does the LORD think we are?” they ask. “Why does he speak to us like this? Are we little children, just recently weaned? He tells us everything over and over—one line at a time, one line at a time, a little here, and a little there!”
There is a fine line between good and evil often mistaken as the gray area of grace. The place where we tread while on the earth, it is complacent and comfortable that allows us to live this life and wait expectantly for Eternity that is to come. However, there is coming a day when those who have been deceived into a misrepresentation of grace will discover the mistake. When the faint line of compromise is erased only to realize all too late that they were standing on the side of evil all along completely missing the parameters of Love reserved for the consistently righteous. The childlike mentality of fine lines and little white lines or maybe omission that offer a false sense of security created by the lie of an enemy who wants to steal, kill and destroy his target. That target is you! There are but two choices in the Word of God – we may choose between life and death. There are two choices in obedience – good or evil. You are either living for God or in this world. There is no other dwelling place – either in His Presence or out of it. Grace is not a revolving door that takes us in and out of darkness at will. Our will with all of the sinful desires was nailed to the Cross of Calvary when we asked Jesus Christ to come into our life and save our soul washing it away in His Blood and the Water of His Word. Now what? We must walk the line.
John 8:35-36 (NLT)
A slave is not a permanent member of the family, but a son is part of the family forever. So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.
Now wait just a second, I thought I was free. You are! Your freedom was not compromised in salvation but your life is no longer your own. We who were once shamelessly enslaved by sinful desire doomed to die now have life more abundantly. (John 10:10) Once slaves to passion, we have become family members who as sons and daughters of God have a rich inheritance. Who the Son sets free is free indeed to pursue God with all our passionate desires and be fulfilled. Grace allows us back into our Father’s House and Kingdom granting us access to His Rich Inheritance and pleasures evermore. (Psalm 16:11) But we must live in His Presence to have our heart’s desire and remain free from sin. Who does the Lord think we are? His Children some are still infants while others are mature. Why does He speak to us like this? God has carefully detailed the way to secure His Blessings and Promises for those who are willing to love, trust and obey Him. We find all of this line by line and precept by precept in His Word. (Isaiah 28:10 NJKV)
Psalm 119:44-45 (NKJV)
So shall I keep Your Law continually, forever and ever. And I will walk at liberty, for I seek Your Precepts.
The only thing that God’s Word restricts in our life is sin. It is the darkness and evil that is pushed to the other side of the line outside of His Presence and we are given the freedom to choose between the two. First, we choose death or life. “See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, in that I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and His judgments, that you may live and multiply; and the LORD your God will bless you in the land which you go to possess.” (Deuteronomy 30:15-16) You do not have to choose life or good for that matter. But you cannot have life unless it is of your choosing. Therefore, to choose life means rejecting death and to do good means to turn from evil. Freedom is found by those who seek God’s Precepts and walk in them.
What exactly is a precept? A precept is a commandment, rule or principle for action. It is not something that is to be heard and not followed. God’s Commandments lead to life never death. Those who know the Word of God and do what it says will be righteous and in right-standing with God. But I don’t understand if I am set free from the Law, then why do I have to do what it says? The Law of God is not a bad thing. It is not restrictive when it comes to God’s Kingdom. It is a Book of Instruction that leads to a satisfying life. The restriction of the Law was death. We could not do what God’s Word said and were all destined to die until Jesus provided us with Grace through His Death, Burial and Resurrection. Now we are free to do what the Word says and receive the reward a Heavenly Reward. Before Jesus, one sin was the end of our pursuit for God. It could not be satisfied so there was no hope in reconciliation with God because our sin-filled nature would not allow it. But now, we are able to pursue the Kingdom of God by His Word without worrying that we will have to die when we fail. We are now free to follow Jesus line by line and precept by precept!
Romans 5:6-11 (NKJV)
For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
We have been reconciled to God through the Death of Jesus Christ. We were once His Enemies, but now have a change of heart. Salvation is reconciliation through Jesus Christ. Few know and understand the meaning of reconciliation and will die because of it. The Word of God says that people perish because of a lack of knowledge. (Hosea 4:6) To be reconciled is to bring into agreement. It also means to make compatible or consistent. It is an act of re-consecration. Sin put us at odds with God. Now that our sin has been washed away, we are in right standing with the Lord once again. I do not understand where anyone could possibly believe that grace allows us or affords them to willfully disobey God’s Word yet remain in righteousness with God the Father. It just doesn’t make any sense. Christians do it all the time. In ignorance of God’s Word and a lack of attention to His Precepts in the name of freedom and grace, they dive right back into the world. These are the same people who live defeated lives and eventually blame an absent God. God demonstrated His Love for us that even we chose sin and death – Jesus died for us. Now it is up to us by His Grace, Mercy and Love already provided and detailed in His Word to live a life in agreement, compatible and consistently righteous in His Presence. God allows us access to His Presence and the Treasure of His Kingdom but will we go there? “And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My People.” Therefore “Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you.” (2 Corinthians 6:15-17)
Deuteronomy 28:1-2 (NKJV)
“Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today that the LORD your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God…”
Who doesn’t want all of God’s Blessings in their life? I do. However, I cannot skip Deuteronomy 28:1-2 and skip ahead to claim all the blessings listed in Chapter 28. It shall come to pass if… God tells us exactly how to live a blessed life now, but we choose to skip the parts that require anything of us. We must learn to value the Word of God as a useful and vital part of our everyday life. (Psalm 119:14-16) Every single decision that we make as a believer should be sought after from the Word of God and its valuable resource. It leads to life and life more abundantly. His Word will become a delight to those who choose to live in it and through it rather than leaving it dusty on the shelf. It has the power to restore our heart and soul. (Psalm 119:25-32) Sin once burdened our heart creating a heaviness no longer bearable. God’s Word is the Strength in our Salvation. It will enlarge our heart to be filled with more and more of His Spirit that will become His Glory spilling over our life. We must take the Word of God seriously. (Psalm 119:27-28) If we declare one part of it invalid, it negates the entire testimony. All points are valuable and true. Each line is worthy of our attention. Every precept a call to action where faith becomes belief. Faith comes by hearing the Word of God. (Romans 10:17) We have been given a measure of faith discovered in the Word. (Romans 12:3) The Word of God cuts away hard, calloused hearts to expose the faith inside and allow it to grow and manifest God’s Glory in our life. (Hebrews 4:11-13) If you desire the Blessings and Promises that God has made you – it is only through reconciliation to Jesus Christ that it is attained. He is the Word of God wrapped in flesh. (John 1:14) He is the Only Way into the Presence of God.
Psalm 37:28-31 (AMP)
For the Lord delights in justice and forsakes not His saints; they are preserved forever, but the offspring of the wicked [in time] shall be cut off. [Then] the [consistently] righteous shall inherit the land and dwell upon it forever. The mouth of the [uncompromisingly] righteous utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks with justice. The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide.
Who is the person called consistently righteous or uncompromisingly righteous? It can be you. The Word of God allows us to see God’s Way and walk in it. Grace allows us to do so with success. Those who choose to be uncompromisingly righteous will prosper (Isaiah 60:21). They will be protected (Proverbs 18:10), blessed (Proverbs 33:3), successful (Psalm 55:23) and have an inheritance. (Psalm 37:28-31). The Word of God also reveals that the consistently righteous will move mountains. “The way of the [consistently] righteous (those living in moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relationship of their lives) is level and straight; You, O [Lord], Who are upright, direct aright and make level the path of the [uncompromisingly] just and righteous.”(Isaiah 26:7) Jesus said that with a mustard seed of faith, His Believers could move mountains. We all have some obstacles that we hope to overcome. The Word of God line by line and precept by precept makes them melt before us. To choose life means to choose a life of uncompromising righteousness and the Word of God will make this possible.
2 Corinthians 10:3-6 (NLT)
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.
There are some people who are reading this today thinking you have no idea what I have been going through. I try to do right but keeping falling away. The enemy is on the doorstep beating down my door along with bill collectors and bad news. I try not to walk in the flesh, but I cannot seem to get ahead. Take a deep breath. One more. Line by line and precept by precept is like putting one foot in front of the other. The Lord doesn’t expect you to do it all by yourself. In fact, He knows just how crafty the enemy is. “Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:3-4) When the tempter comes, look for the Word you need for the moment. When he flees, keep looking for more. When I began spending time with the Lord, I committed five minutes, then ten and so on until now I would rather spend time in His Word than doing most other things. Why? Because I found what I needed to satisfy my soul. God isn’t impressed with how much “time” I spend reading it, it is the effort that I put into doing His Word that really counts. I will never win the war against the enemy and put him properly under my feet until I live in the Power of Jesus Christ. Jesus is the Word. His Word is vital to my success. We are going to face troubles in life but the righteous will be delivered from the all! (Psalm 34:18-19) Put a little effort into knowing and understanding Gods’ Word and its place in your life. You will see instant results. Stop trying to work out your salvation all by yourself. Jesus didn’t need your help overcoming sin and death. He didn’t need you to march into hell with Him. All He asks is that you follow Him. He is the Word. There is no excuse. To walk the line is to find the freedom and fulfillment you once could only hope and long for. Now it can be found by you – in His Word.
1 Peter 2:1-3 (NLT)
Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word that you may grow thereby, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
A newborn baby comes into this world desiring just one thing – milk. It could care less about anything else other than its source of life. We must desire the pure milk of God’s Word trouble is we have been fed so much other garbage at first it may not taste very good. Fasting will help us in this endeavor as we wean ourselves from all the distractions in this world such as television, social media and the internet to begin to take in God’s Word on a regular and consistent basis. At first, you may think you are starving. But the more you make the right choices, the better you will feel much like making a better lifestyle choice in your diet. We must taste and see that the Lord is good. (Psalm 34:8) We must be innocent as a baby but mature enough to discern good and evil. (I Corinthians 14:20) We must grow up in righteousness. (Hebrews 5:13-14) All of this is accomplished precept by precept as we discover what God has promised us and walk the line of His Word to achieve it.
James 1:2-8 (NKJV)
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
Psalm 26:6-8 (NLT)
I wash my hands to declare my innocence. I come to your altar, O LORD, singing a song of thanksgiving and telling of all your wonders. I love your sanctuary, LORD, the place where your glorious presence dwells.
My husband and I have had a full house for all of our married life. On our wedding day, we left the church with each other and three small children. We have never really known the silence of empty rooms without the pounding of little feet and yelling of loud voices as seven people grew in love over the years. Now as our children grow up, there are fewer and fewer noises in our house. What used to seem cramped and overrun with people is becoming bigger and bigger. Two of our children have ventured out into the world of adulthood with another not far behind. Our youngest two face new milestones each day leading them to maturity, and now the possibility becomes probability as one day they will all grow up and move away. Recently, the three girls went to stay at the beach with friends for a week and for the first time ever – we were alone. My husband and I struggled with the empty house void of laughter and noise. The order of our life came crashing down when the routine and rowdiness of the children were gone. The atmosphere changed as we ate dinner alone at the very same table once overrun by our kids. Our life is markedly different without their presence. They add to the quality of our life. Oh sure, there is less laundry to do. There is certainly a tremendous reduction in our grocery bill. Certainly, there are less demands on our time when everyone is gone. But what many herald as a good thing, we must learn to appreciate because we love being parents. We really cannot remember not being mom and dad. We love the noise of our family. We are fixed in the routine. Without their presence, everything changes. We long for their return and welcome them home as they add something to our home that it needs, wants and desires.
“I love your sanctuary, Lord, the place where your glorious presence dwells.” Do you live in the Presence of God? If you have never experienced a houseful of children, then what I have shared with you may be a revelation. To some, it may not seem like the blissful atmosphere as we do. To others who long for children, it only brings a deeper longing for satisfaction. For others, who maybe are in the midst of a houseful and long for a few moments of peace, it will change your perspective. Unless you experience the Presence of God, you will never know what you are missing. It is the Presence of God that has changed my life. When I didn’t think I would last another day under the trials and testing, His Spirit carried me through. He is the bond between my husband and I that allows us to overcome our differences and put our expectation in God not each other so our marriage is not a sad statistic. The Presence of the Lord is His Glory and Power that can take two messed up people with three small children and make a thriving home and loving family. This is my testimony. It is based on personal experience with God and man. If you want to experience the Power and Glory of God for yourself, then it is up to you to experience the Power and Glory of God found only in His Presence. Only then will you too understand the supernatural intervention of God in your life. God’s Sanctuary is not a building. It is not a congregation. You cannot drive there. You cannot be a member simply by coming forward, making a profession of faith and moving your letter. The Sanctuary of God referred to is that place where the Glory of God dwells – it is in you! You have the Power to change your life living on the inside of you trying to get out. Jesus died so that you could experience the Presence of God but not his anger and judgment. You have the best of both worlds. His Glory on the inside so you can meet Him on the other side. It is all about the Presence of God.
Exodus 33:17-23 (NLT)
The LORD replied to Moses, “I will indeed do what you have asked, for I look favorably on you, and I know you by name.” Moses responded, “Then show me your glorious presence.” The LORD replied, “I will make all my goodness pass before you, and I will call out my name, Yahweh, before you. For I will show mercy to anyone I choose, and I will show compassion to anyone I choose. But you may not look directly at my face, for no one may see me and live.” The LORD continued, “Look, stand near me on this rock. As my glorious presence passes by, I will hide you in the crevice of the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove my hand and let you see me from behind. But my face will not be seen.”
In the beginning, God created man and woman to live in His Presence. However, as we all know humanity chose a different way of life. Rather than life, people chose to die living their own way. So God tried Plan B. The Lord sent His Presence to the people when He could no longer come any closer due to the sin that flowed through them. The people were afraid. Now I don’t know if they were more afraid of being consumed because of their sin or not willing to give it up or maybe a little of both as is evident today. This didn’t work either so Jesus Christ came so that the Glory of God could come to live inside of each of us. It is a gift freely given but not always opened. Although the Spirit moves, it does not mean that God has changed. So as we study this passage a little bit, maybe we can wrap our heart and mind around God’s Presence and allow it to manifest in our life more and more. “For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.” (2 Corinthians 3:17-18)
Numbers 23:19 (NLT)
God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through?
The very first thing to know and understand about the Presence of God is who the Lord is and what He is capable of. It is not a matter of will God act on our behalf but simply a matter of when. We cannot live life wondering if He can but knowing that He will. This is faith. We must have faith in God to enter His Presence. It is not His Requirement if you think about it but rather the heart of mankind that requires it. You will not have faith if you do not trust. You will not enter the unseen reality of faith if you are not absolutely convinced it is safe and favorable place that you want to be. Sin compromises our safety in the Presence of God because the Lord cannot and will not tolerate it in His Presence. His Justice and Righteousness will not allow it. So we must be fully convinced by faith that fortifies confident hope that if we enter His Presence we will not be destroyed. The first thing God said to Moses is “I will do what you have asked.” What have you asked for from God? Does it line up with His Plan? Does it accomplish His Will, His Way? “Understand, therefore, that the LORD your God is indeed God. He is the faithful God who keeps his covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes his unfailing love on those who love him and obey his commands.” (Deuteronomy 7:9) Faith requires a life change to be revealed. Obedience is a must to live in the Presence of God or your life is in direct opposition. But once turning from our own path and stepping into God’s Plan, He will do exactly what He has promised leaving nothing out until it is complete. The very first promise is salvation. Without salvation, no one can enter the Presence of God and live so God created a great chasm between the two of you for your own protection. The Blood of Jesus is fills the void so that we can safely and boldly come into His Presence making our petitions and requests to the Father. “Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.” (Lamentations 3:21-23)
Isaiah 61:1-3 (NLT)
The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me, for the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the LORD’s favor has come, and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies. To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory.
When the Gift of Salvation is accepted, the Spirit of the Lord is placed inside of you. You are now anointed by God. What you do with this Gift is up to you? The Lord’s Favor has come applies to your life right now. It is up to people to discover everything that God has in store for our life. It requires faith that is deeply rooted and grounded in His Righteousness that is planted in His Presence (or His Glory). Are you a frustrated Christian? Are you a bottomed-out believer who feels no difference between yesterday and today? It is not God who needs to get moving so it must be…. “For I look favorably on you” is the Word of the Lord for your life today, tomorrow and forever. He said it to Moses and He is saying it to us. God does not change. If you will live in God’s Presence then you will experience His Favor. “Tell Aaron and his sons to bless the people of Israel with this special blessing: ‘May the LORD bless you and protect you. May the LORD smile on you and be gracious to you. May the LORD show you his favor and give you his peace.’ Whenever Aaron and his sons bless the people of Israel in my name, I myself will bless them.” (Numbers 6:23-27) We live under this blessing as joint heirs with Jesus Christ. Righteousness is found in Jesus Christ. To remain righteous, we must follow Christ. Faith is produced when we do this. Confident hope springs forth and a harvest of God’s Favor is discovered.
Hebrews 12:23-24 (NLT)
You have come to the assembly of God’s firstborn children, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God himself, who is the judge over all things. You have come to the spirits of the righteous ones in heaven who have now been made perfect. You have come to Jesus, the one who mediates the new covenant between God and people, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks of forgiveness instead of crying out for vengeance like the blood of Abel.
God knows you by name. Do you know God’s Name? Do you know who He is? Are you aware of how He operates? Do you know Jesus? Have you become acquainted with His Spirit? God has done everything to make sure that you know His Name and He most certainly knows who you are! He created you! He was with you in your mother’s womb. He was there when you took your first breath. The Lord has been watching and waiting for you to discover and yearn for the Eternity hidden in your heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11) and take the faith that He has given you to turn it into confident hope that will boldly access His Presence as a Child of God. What is left for me to do? Simply ask Him for it. “Show me the Glory of Your Presence.” All we have to do is ask! We ask for everything else BUT to experience the Presence of God. When everything we want, need and desire is right there!
Ephesians 3:18-20 (NLT)
And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.
If I took the time to tell you every Promise of God that has come to pass in my life, you will relate to some things and not so much other details based on your own life experience. I didn’t think much of deliverance until I witnessed firsthand someone being set free. I didn’t really believe in miraculous healing like I did after He healed my loved one. There are a lot of things that we confess to believe that in reality we are not fully convinced are true. Faith without works is dead. But let’s face it, most humans beings will take a pill to get rid of a headache before they ask God to heal their aching head. It is human nature to reach for the immediate rather than waiting on the miraculous. So rather than detail my life experience I will simply share what the Lord has to say about His Presence based on the account of Moses. In God’s Presence you will find His Goodness. (Psalm 23:1-6) No better is His Goodness defined than in the 23rd Psalm as we walk through this Life, God’s Goodness is pursuing us just waiting for us to turn around. When we become confident in the Goodness of God found only in His Presence, we will wait for it patiently. We will be brave and courageous knowing He will act in this life. (Psalm 27:13-14) You are not a victim of your circumstances but positioned for His Goodness.
In His Presence, we find grace and more grace. Salvation is the divine selection of God to receive His Grace. To return to darkness and sin is to soundly reject it. Acceptance of God’s Grace means entrance to His Presence. “Then I called on the name of the LORD: “Please, LORD, save me!” How kind the LORD is! How good he is! So merciful, this God of ours! The LORD protects those of childlike faith; I was facing death, and he saved me. Let my soul be at rest again, for the LORD has been good to me. He has saved me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling. And so I walk in the LORD’s presence as I live here on earth!” (Psalm 116:4-9)
In His Presence, there is mercy based on His Compassion. Mercy relieves the penalty of sin so we can serve Him. Sin and shame once barricaded our entrance and barred our freedom but now we are free to serve the Lord because of His Great Mercy moved by His Compassion. (Exodus 34:5-7) It is God’s Character based on His Unfailing Love for people. (Psalm 145:9) It is His Identity. All of these things are available in the Presence of God and necessary for the fulfillment of salvation, sanctification and redemption. We absolutely unequivocally must have God’s Goodness, Grace, Mercy and Compassion to make it into His Presence and remain there forever.
Psalm 15:1-5 (NLT)
Who may worship in your sanctuary, LORD? Who may enter your presence on your holy hill? Those who lead blameless lives and do what is right, speaking the truth from sincere hearts.
Those who refuse to gossip or harm their neighbors or speak evil of their friends. Those who despise flagrant sinners, and honor the faithful followers of the LORD, and keep their promises even when it hurts. Those who lend money without charging interest, and who cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent. Such people will stand firm forever.
“Look, stand near me on this rock. As my glorious presence passes by…” Thank you God for the Rock! Jesus Christ is the Rock! He is represented here in the Word of God before He even made His First Appearance on the earth. This is the part where God’s Mercy and Grace overtake us. His Goodness fills our life. It is when we engage with God and let Him take the lead. Psalm 15 seems impossible until we add Jesus. We can follow Jesus and live in the Presence of God every single day for the rest of our life into Eternity. We can clothe ourselves in the Presence of Jesus Christ. (Romans 13:14) His Spirit is inside of us. Do we wear Him well? He is the Stone the builders rejected. He is the Gateway of salvation. All who enter in can live in the Presence of God! (Psalm 118:19-24)
Psalm 16:11 (NLT)
You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.
In His Presence, you will discover God’s Plan and His Protection for your life. It is a good one with a hope and future. (Jeremiah 29:11) By accepting the Gift of Life offered by Jesus Christ, His Spirit becomes a permanent part of our being. There is no escaping His Presence and His Glory lives in us if we choose to continue in the way of life not death. (Psalm 139:7-12) The Lord will hide you in His Presence so no matter what the details of your life may be, you will always be protected. You will always be blessed even when others are cursing your life. (Psalm 31:19-20) Righteousness and justice will no longer be your enemy. We now can have the impossible because of His Grace, Mercy and Love that made the Way for us to enter His Presence once again. (Psalm 89:14-16) Those who live in the Presence of God choosing righteousness by faith can never be harmed by the enemy who must request permission to test or tempt God’s People. (Job 1:6; Job 2:1) God isn’t going to allow anything that you are not ready for or will not result in fulfillment, completion, contentment, satisfaction, blessing or prosperity because these are the benefits of living in His Presence. Who wouldn’t want to live in the Presence of God? Once you have experienced the Presence of God and all of its benefits, living any other way is not an option.
Hebrews 10:21-23 (NLT)
And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house, let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water. Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.
Psalm 37:3-4 (NLT)
Trust in the LORD and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper. Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires.
Desire is in the heart of every man, woman and child throughout all the days of their life. The need to desire is a motivating force. There are things we want and need but when that desire begins to express itself beyond the recesses of the human heart something happens and desperation is born. Desire is to want or crave something. It is the expression of a wish that becomes a request. Desire produces drive. When the need or want becomes urgent it is called desperation producing recklessness that forces us to do something to satisfy the want, need and desire. Who doesn’t want to be satisfied? Who hasn’t tried just about everything possible to be content? Our initial desire comes from the sinful, selfish nature that human beings are born with. But God placed Eternity in our heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11) to cause us to seek more than things of this world and pursue forever. Believers long to have the Lord give them their heart’s desire. But if you heart desires sinful things, He will not do it. If the things we want are not good for us and do not lead to life, then God refuses to release them. The desire of our heart must be for the Lord. We must become desperate for Jesus alone. How do we take human desire and lust and turn it into Godly Fulfillment and Perfect Love? We must use our faith to trust in the Lord and do good. THEN people will prosper. Delight in the Lord. When Jesus alone is the object of desperation in your life, He will give you your heart’s desire. But what if I do not want the Lord more than anything else? What if the things I desire are not exactly the things that He has for me?
Psalm 73:25-26 (NLT)
Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on earth. My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.
In order to plan our trip, one must know the destination otherwise you can only wander around and hope you get there. We must be desperate for Jesus in order to turn our desire into reality. The sinful nature of humanity is distrustful. It is wary and tends to doubt. The great desire for satisfaction must be given a destination – Eternity. When people turn back to God, learn to trust the Lord AND do good – they will experience fulfillment of desire from the inside out based on faith that is turned into confident hope. Can you say truthfully to the Lord today, “I desire YOU more than anything on earth?” Is your health or that of a loved one failing today? Can you say, “I desire YOU more than anything on earth?” Is your spirit weak from wandering from place to place and never really experiencing contentment in life? Can you say, “I desire YOU more than anything else on earth? Such a statement will produce longing in the heart of those who love the Lord and loathing in those who fear losing the things of this life. Repentance means turning from wicked, evil sins back to the Lord and continuing to your destination which is Heaven. Salvation is satisfied in such a way. Redemption is fulfilled the moment we meet Him face-to-face and are not consumed by justice but saved by grace. Desperation for Jesus more than anything else on the earth is the beginning of fulfillment. Desperation is nothing more than overwhelming desire to please God and be where He is. (Psalm 119:20) Such a cry draws God in closer but it is when we become focused and desperate for Him alone that He acts. (Psalm 145:18-19) To say that I love God and want Him, but never pursue Him is like saying “I want to go to Hawaii” and never booking a ticket to get there. (Proverbs 21:25) Desperation is a call to action and a step in the right direction of fulfillment, satisfaction and contentment. But how do I get there from here?
Isaiah 26:7-9 (NLT)
But for those who are righteous, the way is not steep and rough. You are a God who does what is right, and you smooth out the path ahead of them. LORD, we show our trust in you by obeying your laws; our heart’s desire is to glorify your name. All night long I search for you; in the morning I earnestly seek for God. For only when you come to judge the earth will people learn what is right.
Do I desire God? Do I want Jesus? Do I have His Spirit living inside of me? These questions are not answered by what we say, but rather what we do to answer them. Desire for God should produce an action. Sometimes we think we love and desire the Lord but our actions point in an entirely different direction. Think about it. If you are earnestly seeking God, what are you looking for? Is it money? Is it success? Is it the love of another human being? How do I discover the true motivation of my heart? What do you spend the most time doing? What are you investing in God’s Kingdom or man’s economy? Still unsure? The Word of God is sharper than a two-edged sword that pierces the heart and reveals its true contents. If you love God and earnestly seek the Lord than you will obey His Word, not because you have to anymore but because you want to. Obedience causes us to live righteous lives. Righteousness allows closer proximity to God. However, if sin still has a stronghold in your life – you will not want to move in. Sin cannot get close to the Lord or it will be consumed by His Justice hence our need for grace. Those who choose righteousness do not have a problem entering the Presence of God. (Isaiah 26:7) In fact, they enter boldly. (Hebrews 4:16) Is your heart’s desire to glorify God? If it is than His Word will be the compass for your life. Plain and simple. No really is it is that simple. As we begin to see the Lord for Who He is and Heaven for what it is, we begin to invest treasure there considering it a worthy investment with a high return. If you had a high paying position at a company – who wouldn’t gladly go to work each day knowing that a great return was coming on the next payday. However, those in minimum wage jobs have difficulty working hard for low wages. But those who seek the Kingdom of God can work either job and be satisfied. To desire God above anything else on the earth allows us to work for His Kingdom no matter what we do and find contentment in such a place. (Matthew 6:20-24) Who do you love today? It is the person or thing you invest your time and effort in attaining. Desire for the Lord is rewarded with incorruptible and eternal rewards that remain forever.
Romans 7:4-6 (NLT)
So, my dear brothers and sisters, this is the point: You died to the power of the law when you died with Christ. And now you are united with the one who was raised from the dead. As a result, we can produce a harvest of good deeds for God. When we were controlled by our old nature, sinful desires were at work within us, and the law aroused these evil desires that produced a harvest of sinful deeds, resulting in death. But now we have been released from the law, for we died to it and are no longer captive to its power. Now we can serve God, not in the old way of obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way of living in the Spirit.
The Law was provided so that people could find their way back to God. It was given as a means turn their desire back to the Lord. People still had a problem finding their way. So Jesus Christ came to be the Way. When He died on the Cross, He cancelled our sin debt. Now we are free to live and desire God. The Resurrection Power of God allows us to nail our desires and passions to the Cross and walk away from the death sentence they produced. (Galatians 5:24) But when we try to coexist between sinfulness and godliness with a bonding of grace, we lose our way all over again. We are not set free from sin to sin again. That’s just dumb. We are freed from sinful desire that works in us by His Spirit to do what pleases God. The natural drives and desire produced by sin no longer hold any power over your life. (Colossians 2:20-23) You have what it takes to follow Jesus and pursue God and live in His Presence. By choosing to allow the Spirit of God to guide our life then we will no longer need to satisfy the physical and emotional cravings of our sinful nature. (Galatians 5:16-18) They were nailed to the Cross remember and by choosing not to pry them free and chase after them again, we are set free to do the Will of God and satisfy the Eternal Desire of our heart, mind and soul. But understand desire is a drive and desperation must do something to be fulfilled. You cannot just sit around and wait. You must go after God, pursue Jesus and hand the controls over to the Holy Spirit every single day, each and every moment from now until He comes.
Romans 13:13-14 (NLT)
Because we belong to the day, we must live decent lives for all to see. Don’t participate in the darkness of wild parties and drunkenness, or in sexual promiscuity and immoral living, or in quarreling and jealousy. Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires.
Salvation will become satisfaction when we decide to serve God. We must “clothe” our life in the Presence of the Lord from the inside out. Desperation is satisfied when we do something about it. I am desperate for you God equates to nothing if tomorrow you choose to live the exact same way you did today. We belong to the day now. Sin has no place in the day. Why do you think bars and nightclubs crank up the music at night and turn down the lights? We must live decent lives on display to glorify God. There are going to be things that we DO NOT participate in. Grace is not a free ticket to sin and be set free. It is the mark of those set free from sin and darkness. We were a people without a God until Jesus Christ died to reestablish our relationship with the Father. We were essentially nameless. But when we accept the title of Christian and are labeled Follower of Christ, we represent Jesus Christ in every aspect of our being. I once was at the mall with my daughter who favors my husband completely and my brother-in-law who favors him as well. An old acquaintance who met us on our way assumed that I was his wife and my little girl was his child because they looked just alike. He quickly clarified that she was his niece. Do you look like your Father God? Do you favor Jesus Christ? Can people tell that you belong to Him by the way you live? (I Peter 2:10-12) People are watching you. They may not listen to a word that you say until you tell them you believe in Jesus and then they will judge you by everything you do and say. It is a test of validity for a hopeless and dying world who is looking to satisfy the Eternity in their hearts. If you do not look and act like Jesus – they may be lost forever.
Romans 6:11-13 (NLT)
So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus. Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires. Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God.
Now that you are dead to sin and death is powerless in your life, you are free to love, serve and trust God openly and unashamedly. You can live to glorify His Name and experience the full satisfaction that is found in salvation. It will take a concentrated effort on your part to release every aspect of your life from sinful desire. Sin consumed your life. It shut the doors of your heart to the blessings and promises of God. They are all now unlocked. It is up to you to open them to the Lord for a quick work. Do not give in to sinful desire. You have to invest time and energy in holding fast to your confession of faith while God’s Spirit restores your willingness to serve the Lord. It takes time to know and understand the Word of God and apply it as wisdom to your life. But it will NEVER happen, if you do not take the time to read and study His Word. You cannot establish a relationship with anyone not even God if you don’t have some contact and conversations with the Lord. The basic need for fulfillment comes from a longing for Eternity. God has given us faith to begin our journey. But it will take endurance to make it to the end. Consider yourself dead to sin. Walk away from it. Abhor it. Deny it. If you do, you will find that you are pursing God. You will be satisfied. You will be content. The Lord will complete you right where you are if He does not do another tangible thing for you. Desire the Gifts of God given by His Spirit – they will help you win the war against the flesh because the Spirit is inside of you. (I Corinthians 12:30-31) God will literally give you a new desire to please Him! (Philippians 2:12-13)
James 1:12-16 (NLT)
God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else. Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death. So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters.
Testing and temptation are all a means of satisfaction. They allow us to look inside our heart and reveals our truest motivation. Can you honestly say today, I desire YOU God more than anything else on earth?” Sometimes it is through the consequences of life that we discover this is not the case and are given the opportunity to repent and be restored by the Lord. Temptation is born of our own evil desire. God would never tempt us because there is no evil in Him. He will test us as a means of self-discovery. Jesus already knows the contents of our heart but He wants us to know, too. We must know the source of our desperation to know if our plight is in vain. Desire that leads to desperation for anything other than God, Jesus and His Spirit lead only to death. He is the Source of Life. Where sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death every single time so do not be deceived by those who want the best of both worlds. God’s Grace is for those who take a stand against evil especially the sinful nature inside of us and choose a new heart and life in Jesus Christ. For those grace abounds and the enemy flees. (James 4:6-7) Those who love evil will never have the Grace of God no matter how hard they try. Satisfaction will remain elusive and discontentment will reign in their life as Eternity is unachievable. You can only get there One Way and His Name is Jesus.
Revelation 22:16-17 (NLT)
“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am both the source of David and the heir to his throne. I am the bright morning star.” The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” Let anyone who hears this say, “Come.” Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life.
What do you desire today? The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come!”
I Corinthians 13:1-3(NLT)
If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
Everyone wants to love and be loved. Acceptance, approval and affirmation are all qualities desired by people. God has placed this desire in our heart in affiliation with Eternity. The primary purpose of forever is that people can live in the Presence of God which is the Light of His Amazing Love. The truest test of our love for God is the ability to love others including everyone without exception. If only God knew the people that I know, would He beg to differ or change His Mind? No, because when Jesus Christ died on the Cross He was looking at their face as much as mine. God’s Love is inclusive and never exclusive. “Whoever will come” is the invitation. God loves people – all people. There is no one exempt from His Unfailing Love and Greatest Affection – Jesus Christ. The test of love determines whether or not we as believers we have fully accepted the Love of God and given Jesus His Place in our heart and life. There is nothing to gain in the Kingdom of God unless it is motivated and supported by love. What we need today is less religion and more love!
I John 4:7-9 (NLT)
Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him.
God is love. He is foundational in the discovery of true love that is His Motivation concerning all people. God’s Love is Eternal. (I Corinthians 13:13) If we could just wrap our heart and head around God’s Divine Character that is love maybe we could learn to love others, too. Anyone who loves is a Child of God and anyone who does not love does not know God. God demonstrated His Great Love by sacrificing His Son for the sins of all people so you and I could find the Eternity that He planted in our heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11) and thrive in it. (Psalm 52:7-9) Trouble is we call on the Name of the Lord but never really get to know Him. We say that we love Jesus but do not desire intimacy with the One who loved us first and loves us the most. Without the Love of God manifested and thriving in our heart, it is impossible to love others because we do not know love. God is love.
Matthew 10:37-38 (NLT)
“If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine.”
It is not who we love that is the problem, but how we love. God’s Love is unconditional. Human love is based on conditions. Jesus was not telling this man not to love his father, mother, son or daughter. God created us to live in His Love and love others because of His Love. However, somewhere along the way people decided to love the world more than God and everyone in it more than His Son. Believers are to take up their Cross and follow Jesus. He is our example of all things including love. The problem stems from our inability to love the Lord first. It is a lack of priority that causes the division. To follow man means turning from the Lord. “For God so loved the world that He gave His Only Son…” (John 3:16) But when “God’s Light came into this world, people loved the darkness more than the Light…” (John 3:19) Following Jesus Christ allows us to love others with His Love because we allow His Love to fill us to overflowing. It means loving our family, friends and even enemies in proper order. When the Love of Jesus meets our expectations in life by faith, we are able to accept what people can give rather than placing our hopes, dreams and desires into incapable beings. Jesus meets our expectation and satisfies our soul so we are free to love others expecting nothing in return. This is real love. This is God’s Love. It can only be found when we follow Jesus.
Romans 13:8-10 (NLT)
Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law. For the commandments say, “You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not covet.” These—and other such commandments —are summed up in this one commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.
All of God’s Commandments are centered on His Love. If we obey God’s Word, we will always remain in the parameters of His Love as Children of God. The Commandments are summed up as this – “Love your neighbor as yourself.” If people would simple learn to love others as they would like to be loved, we would live in righteous obedience effortlessly. Our sinful nature will not allow for such a commitment. The acts of disobedience are generally perpetrated against another. When we do not love, we fall out of fellowship in our relationship with the Lord. You cannot live in hatred, jealousy and the like and remain firmly established in God’s Kingdom. It is contradictory to His Nature, Character and Being making it a violation in Heaven. We our obligated by our allegiance to Jesus Christ to love others. Jesus Christ’s entire life on earth was defined by His Compassion Love for others. (Luke 6:34-36) To say that we know God but not keep His Commandments makes us a liar. (I John 2:4-6) To call ourselves Christians means to be filled with compassionate love. Compassionate love cannot leave hearts unturned. Compassion is to be aware of the suffering of others and strive to alleviate it. It drives believers to live in the Light of His Love and draw others there as well. We cannot see the suffering of sin and death plight of humanity and not do something about it. We are obligated to love others. It is not optional. God requires it of those who love Him.
I John 4:16-18 (NLT)
We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world. Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.
There is a difference between knowing how much God loves us and putting our trust in His Love. God is love. If we live in His Love, it shows that God lives in us. His Spirit allows us to love others unconditionally because in Jesus we are complete lacking no good thing. If you have it all, you will be content. Love grows perfect in our faith in God. As it fulfill our life, then we are no longer searching and dissatisfied but filled with more love and overflowing joy. We literally thrive on His Love even though it is unseen. The Spirit of Christ makes His Home in our heart as we learn to trust Him. We cannot love the Lord yet not trust Him and expect love to come supernaturally into our life. Faith is required. It is the Spirit that allows us to experience the depths of God’s Love and draw from it to love others as we have been instructed. (Ephesians 3:17-19) The more comfortable and confident that we become in the Love of God the more easily and freely we can love other people – all people. We have nothing to lose. When we love God first and love Jesus most, we are never in danger of wandering from the height, depth or width that marks the boundaries of God. We become limitless in our love because we are content in Christ. Confidence expels fear. We no longer fear love lost because of the well within our soul. Christ is our source of love, not other people.
Romans 8:38-39 (NLT)
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
What can separate us from the Love of Christ? (Verse 35) Can anything? The answer is a resounding “no” as it reaches mankind from Heaven but that was never the problem. God is love and loves all people. I believe the question is asked of us as people. What can separate you from the Love of God? Is it a person, place or thing that draws you from the Light of His Love back to the darkness of this world? Can anything? Faith allows confident hope built on trusting the Lord with your life beginning with all your love until we are full convinced that nothing can or will ever separate us from His Amazing Love. By making our love for the Lord a priority, our faith is secure. Such a commitment fills every expectation in our life so we are complete in Christ. We love Jesus simply because He loved us first. (I John 4:19) This is the starting place of genuine love for the Lord that will become passionate love for all others. Knowledge and understanding of who God is will give you a new perspective of what His Love is all about and its proper place in your heart and life. His Spirit cultivates love in our life. (Colossians 1:8) It will cause love to overflow in abundance for no other reason than He loves us. (Philippians 1:9-10) It is all that matters. Love is Eternal. Faith, hope AND love are the only three things that will last forever. These three things are solely dependent on one another to manifest all three in our life. (I Corinthians 13:13)
I Corinthians 13:4-7 (NLT)
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
The world would have us think that love is many things. But God in His Usual Fashion simplifies love making it easy to know and understand. So many times in life the enemy complicates things to deceive God’s People and keep them from His Very Best. I break the lie of the enemy on your life today and ask the Lord to reveal His Amazing Love to you all over again. Jesus Christ gave His Life as an act of love. We must give our life away too. Love is not lust. It is not selfish or ruthless but patient and kind. God’s Love brings fulfillment, it does not leave you empty or dry. Love never gives up. That’s why God hates divorce so very much. Love never loses faith for it is the very foundation where love is rooted and grounded. Love is hopeful because the love we cannot see is far greater than any manmade concoction. It endures every circumstance. How far are you willing to go to love others? It begins by following Jesus. Make loving the Lord the priority in your life and you will overflow with love from the inside out for the rest of your time here on earth. Perfect love casts out all fear making it trustworthy and true. No man or woman can do that for you so why not let them off the hook and put your expectation in Christ alone. You can love like God but only as a Child of God. You must know and understand the Lord to become intimate with His Love and give it to others in full supply. You will have more love if you give it all away as it is our obligation. The provider always gives seed to the sower. For God so loved the world He gave His Only Son…I love the Lord so much I must give Him more love!
Romans 12:9-12 (NLT)
Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.
Finally, love is active. It is not passive. Passive love is just words that form a lie. If you love others as God’s Children, then you must really love them. It is no coincidence that loving others comes before hating what is wrong and holding tightly to good as every commandment of God is based on His Love. Take delight in each other…no that is not what it says. There are unlovable people in this world who are not going to love you back or reciprocate the kindness and compassion we give them. But the Lord says, “Take delight in honoring each other!” When we do we honor God and He makes our joy full. Work hard and enthusiastically for God, not man. When you love God first, you can love others the best. Confident hope allows us to rejoice because love is fulfilled in our life whether another human being loves us or not. Be patient. We are all just sinners saved by grace. Keep praying sometimes it is the only thing that helps. And above all in ever circumstance decide to love more!
I Thessalonians 3:12-13 (NLT)
And may the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow, just as our love for you overflows. May he, as a result, make your hearts strong, blameless, and holy as you stand before God our Father when our Lord Jesus comes again with all his holy people. Amen.
2 Peter 3:11-14 (NLT)
Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames. But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness. And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight.
Marriage is a highly anticipated event in the heart and mind of most little girls. From the time they know what a bride is they want to become one. The glitz and glamour of the blessed event leaves images of princes and princes in dreams of grandeur and splendor with white dresses, long veils, lots of flowers, beautiful music and many loved ones all celebrated together. However, anticipation turns to expectancy when a young man appears presenting a ring and asking for her hand. Now she becomes an expert planner to orchestrate her dream of becoming his wife. Most will agree there is much stress in organizing a wedding, so much so many would elope if they had known beforehand what would be required. During their engagement, the couple steals precious moments together. They cannot wait to see their beloved again. They boast to others of their upcoming union proudly displaying their betrothal for all to see. For girls, the most anticipated event of their life is about to happen. Each day leading up to the blessed day when they meet their groom at the altar is culminated in constant preparation. They remain faithful as they wait. The moment they say “I do!” is when they claim their destiny as wife, mother and eventually grandmother establishing their legacy.
We are the Bride of Jesus Christ. Sadly, most people do not anxiously anticipate the Coming of Christ and hope that He will wait to make His Appearance as to fulfill the days of natural life. We do not look forward to the new heavens and earth living in the Glory of God, but choose to embrace the darkness of this world as our home away from home. Filled with comfort and complacency, we do not live for happily ever after but have accepted the counterfeit and substitutions the enemy has surrounded us with forsaking God’s Best. Nobody is interested in things like righteousness, faithfulness and obedience but choose loose morals and willful sin as a lifestyle. This is clearly not the actions of one who anticipates the Coming of Jesus Christ. There is no effort in planning our reunion with our Bridegroom – simply hoping that when we die and have used up the days of our earthly existence that there will be salvation from death and the grave. Grace is used as a get-out-of-hell free card rather than as a means to unite our life with Christ. What happened to the fairytale of Eternity that God placed in our hearts? (Ecclesiastes 3:11) Why is there no longing for Jesus anymore? What’s the rush anyway?
2 Peter 3:8-10 (NLT)
But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment.
I have never really understood on-and-off again relationships, couples who get together and break up over and over again. How does one force love to happen? The greatest advice and insight that I can give those who are engaged or newly married is that marriage is work. It is hard work but worth every single minute. Without commitment, love is impossible. Love is commitment that lasts beyond the whirlwind engagement and perfect day to the monotony of structure and imperfections of people. My husband and I once heard a comedian who began his routine with the revelation that he had just gotten married. Of course, everyone clapped. As he continued through his set, each time he referred to his marriage it grew longer and longer first three years, then ten years and so on. Marriage to Jesus Christ is a lifelong commitment that begins before we ever meet Him face-to-face. A day is like a thousand years to the Lord. He anticipates His Return to claim His Beloved Bride. Are we anxiously awaiting Him? Or has our commitment grown cold with our lukewarm love producing unfaithfulness and forgetfulness about the coming day when Jesus will return to take us away?
Deuteronomy 11:13-14 (NLT)
“If you carefully obey all the commands I am giving you today, and if you love the LORD your God and serve him with all your heart and soul, then he will send the rains in their proper seasons—the early and late rains—so you can bring in your harvests of grain, new wine, and olive oil.”
God operates in seasons. Always has and always will because God does not change. Each day that we spend as a Child of God is used to prepare us for the Return of Jesus Christ. God has designated His People to be the Bride of Christ. We have never been a big proponent of our children entering “dating” relationships at a young age encouraging them to save their heart for the one that God has for them. I pray over my children that they will only have eyes for the one who God has for them. Many young people today will give their heart and attention to anyone who asks rather than knowing and understanding their value and worth. As a believer, you are the Bride of Jesus Christ and any other relationship is secondary to this primary identity. We give so much of our life to other things never sowing into our relationship with Jesus Christ until we do not know who we belong to anymore and give our life away to the sin and darkness of this world. It is important that we learn to recognize God’s Seasons and Timing for our life. To everything there is a season and time…everything. (Ecclesiastes 3:1) But it all should culminate in a thriving relationship with Jesus Christ. Our primary and soul purpose is to love the Lord our God and serve Him with all our heart and soul. This allows our life to be governed by God’s Seasons which puts all our hope and expectancy in the Lord and not the details of life which is a good thing. This world is passing away. Jesus is coming back. When He does this world will soon end and there will be a new heaven and earth. Our ability to live in this place is mandated by our love and commitment as a faithful Bride.
Lamentations 3:22-26 (NLT)
The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!” The LORD is good to those who depend on him, to those who search for him. So it is good to wait quietly for salvation from the LORD.
So what is Jesus waiting for? Why not just come back now and claim His Bride? His Mercy makes Him wait. Each new day that we are given His Mercy accompanies in the hope that we will all repent, turn from our wicked ways and follow Him. Don’t be offended. If you were sinless and perfect, you would not need grace or Jesus Christ. We all sin and fall short of the Glory of God – every single day that we are alive. It is part of our sinful nature. We ALL need His Mercy and Grace every single day that we draw breath on the earth. The Lord is not being slow about His Return but waits patiently for our sake. He is waiting for all to come to repentance and seek salvation. He does not want anyone to be destroyed but all to be saved. Jesus is waiting for you to seek His Face more than the affirmation, approval and acceptance of people and look for all these things by faith from Him. He is your Bridegroom promised by God. (Isaiah 62:3-4) The Lord has done everything possible to secure your relationship and paid a high price so that you would be righteous and acceptable to God. (Isaiah 61:10) Our life should be that of a highly anxious bride who is preparing for her expected wedding. Sadly this is not the case for most people who think they are ready even calling themselves Christians, believers and followers of Jesus Christ, who are out in the world. What’s the rush? Jesus is coming. When He does we must be ready. When the door closes to His Chamber, it will not reopen. Those caught unaware will hear the dreaded words, “I don’t know you!” (Matthew 25:10-12)
I Thessalonians 5:1-5 (NLT)
Now concerning how and when all this will happen, dear brothers and sisters, we don’t really need to write you. For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. When people are saying, “Everything is peaceful and secure,” then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape. But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief. For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night.
Before our son was diagnosed with cancer two years ago, I took many things for granted. I was completely engrossed in my job and all the many details of life that are not really important. When the doctor said, “I am sorry but its cancer!” Everything changed in a moment. Like a giant sheet covered with ripples and wrinkles, it was as if giant hands shook it free and smoothed it out instantaneously. All those days consumed with worry and anxiety over providing for our large family and getting everything done did not matter anymore when faced with the reality of life and death. It was time to make a choice. In that moment, I had decided to choose Jesus. Just Jesus. He became my only hope at the harsh reality without Him I had no hope, no power over my life. Without the Lord, I would die from the inside out as I stood helplessly beside my son whose life was now in danger. Our relationship with Jesus Christ is based solely on faith and trust. If you do not trust the Lord, you will not serve Him. If you do not believe that He is coming again, then what’s the rush? We think that we have all the time in the world until life tells us differently. Suddenly in a moment, Eternity must become a viable option to live beyond the dates on our headstone. The Day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. Our home was robbed several years ago. The thieves monitored our routine and preyed upon it. They took many of our things but that would not be the worst violation. They compromised our trust and security. Suddenly, our kids were afraid to be home alone. We got a security system always wary that every door is locked and window sealed on our departure. It wasn’t so much what was lost as it would all be replaced by insurance, but the imprint of their handprints throughout our home. Even with the great measures that have been taking to bar future intrusions in our life, the truth remains that we could be violated at any time by anyone who wants in bad enough. All we can do is be ready. The Return of the Lord will be like a thief in the night. He will arrive unannounced to surprise His Bride and whisk her away. Will she be ready? Or have we violated His Trust by living with the world? We must be ready in season and out of season for the Return of our Bridegroom. We must be found faithful when He arrives without warning. But then again what bride doesn’t wait in expectation of her groom? (I Corinthians 1:7-9)
Revelation 16:15 (NLT)
“Look, I will come as unexpectedly as a thief! Blessed are all who are watching for me, who keep their clothing ready so they will not have to walk around naked and ashamed.”
God has given us everything we need to be ready when Jesus returns. (Colossians 1:21-22) All we must do is stay close to Him. The Lord has done everything possible to make the impossible fairytale of salvation and redemption possible in the life of people. The rest is up to you and me. We should live each day as if Jesus is on the footstep preparing to knock announcing His Return. (James 5:7-9) God wants us to settle this today. (Isaiah 1:18-20) Are we the Bride of Jesus Christ or not? We are given a choice in the matter. We are to live with a clear conscience as a devoted bride and not one labeled runaway. (I Corinthians 4:4-5) It begins with repentance. (Joel 2:12-14) We have all wandered. It happens even to God’s Best and Brightest Lights when they grow dim weary in well doing and waiting on His Return. Just turn around, He is waiting for you. He wants to restore your relationship and rush back to you soon!
Philippians 3:17-20 (NLT)
Dear brothers and sisters, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example. For I have told you often before, and I say it again with tears in my eyes, that there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ. They are headed for destruction. Their god is their appetite, they brag about shameful things, and they think only about this life here on earth. But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior.
2 Corinthians 6:14-18 (NLT)
Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers. How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever? And what union can there be between God’s temple and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God said:
“I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people. Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the LORD. Don’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you. And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty.”
One of the most embarrassing but common mistake people make on a daily basis is to “push” instead of “pull” or vice versa. We do it all the time approaching a door instinctively pulling or pushing when the opposite is needed to gain access to where we are going. Then quickly looking away most assuredly we read allowed the instructions on the door. But what if there was a tremendous sale in my favorite department store so I rushed over to get some good deals, but when I went to push the door it didn’t budge. So I look in the windows and see others enjoying the drastic discounts and free giveaways so I begin to beat on the door in a jealous rage that I want in too. Frustrated and about to leave another patron arrives and gives the door a quick tug entering easily without any obstruction. How silly would I feel? Righteousness is the secret to accessing God’s Presence and all that He has for you. There is one way in and one way out contrary to the false teachings of today. However, too many times we want God’s Best and the world’s finest as well. This would be like traveling in two distinctly different directs. You will only reach one destination or the other because as human beings we cannot be two places at once. How can righteousness partner with wickedness? It cannot. So why are there so many Christians sitting just outside of the Presence of God mad that they cannot make it in when all along if they had just chosen to do right – the door to His Courts would have flown wide open? Are you frustrated today? Are you a Christian who cannot seem to open doors? Are you experiencing the reward of God’s Favor in your life? Do you want to? God has chosen to live in you and walk with you through life into Eternity. Jesus Christ has made this possible but each individual must choose the pathway of their life. His Spirit will guide you opening doors and closing them in your life.
Deuteronomy 6:17-18 (NLT)
You must diligently obey the commands of the LORD your God—all the laws and decrees he has given you. Do what is right and good in the LORD’s sight, so all will go well with you. Then you will enter and occupy the good land that the LORD swore to give your ancestors.
The Word of God never goes out of style and outdated. His Word leaves a ripple in Eternity that carries it until that time which it comes to pass. The Word of God is alive. However, someone has convinced fellow believers that none of it matters thanks to Jesus Christ. This is a lie. The Grace of God demonstrated in Jesus Christ did not make His Law exempt but satisfied the penalty of sin. We are still called to do what is right and good in the Lord’s Sight. The Word of God is available to instruct and teach us. (2 Timothy 3:15-17) Thanks to Jesus Christ it can no longer condemn anyone but guide us to every promise that it holds. By choosing righteousness and goodness as a platform for life, all will go well for you. Don’t believe me. It says it in God’s Word with many other precious promises. We want God’s Favor and His Reward but seldom take the time to read the instructions some as simple as “push” and “pull” so access is denied because they chose not to know and understand God’s Word, Will and Way.
Galatians 2:20-21 (NLT)
My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not treat the grace of God as meaningless. For if keeping the law could make us right with God, then there was no need for Christ to die.
The problem began when mankind chose evil over good. We decided that we wanted it our way rather than God’s Plan. This immediately put humanity in opposition with God. By choosing to live in righteousness, the law does not offend people. However, when we choose disobedience the Law of God convicts us just as it does in the natural realm. We have no problem with authority until we break the law. Jesus Christ was God’s Provision for the penalty of our disobedience not an excuse to continue sinning. The wages of sin are always death. (Romans 6:19-23) Never ever is sin acceptable to God and grace does not make that provision. Those who choose to live in sin are ignored by the Lord – He literally turns His Head from the sight of them. It is only in righteousness that God’s Eyes remained fixed and His Ears attentive on His People. (Psalm 34:14-16) Grace is useless if it does not result in righteousness for God’s People. That is all that He was ever after to live happily ever after with you! Sin will always separate God and His People. It will keep them from the blessings and promises that are hidden in His Presence. Joy will be elusive for those outside the parameters of grace that hem us in by right standing with God through Jesus Christ. It is clearly impossible for people to keep the mandates of God’s Law. Grace is the only possible way for believers to live in right standing with God. However, those who treat grace as meaningless by using it as an excuse to sin will never be satisfied by the Favor and Reward found in the Presence of God. To live in union with the Spirit of Christ requires a pursuit of righteousness. The choice is made through repentance to turn from evil and do good! Are you living to honor that choice today?
Psalm 15 (NLT)
Who may worship in your sanctuary, LORD? Who may enter your presence on your holy hill? Those who lead blameless lives and do what is right, speaking the truth from sincere hearts. Those who refuse to gossip or harm their neighbors or speak evil of their friends. Those who despise flagrant sinners, and honor the faithful followers of the LORD, and keep their promises even when it hurts. Those who lend money without charging interest, and who cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent. Such people will stand firm forever.
Righteousness opens the door to the Presence of God and allows us to walk in the blessings and prosperity that He has reserved for His People. To enter any other way is that of a robber or thief. Who can live such a life? Those who live blameless lives made possible through the Blood of Jesus Christ and those who choose to do what is right walking in righteousness each day. Righteousness is a choice. In everyday situations, we must choose between good and evil. Just to clear things up, there is no such thing as half-truths, middle of the road and gray areas when it comes to righteousness. You are or you are not. Kind of like you cannot push and pull at the same time, you cannot serve God and the world at the same time. You must make a choice. But as usual, God rewards those who diligently seek Him. By doing what was right, Abraham received His Promise. (Genesis 18:18-19) It was faith that kept Him firmly fixed in righteous obedience to God even when things did not seem to be favorable. There is restoration for those who choose right standing with God. (2 Samuel 22:21-25) Just look at David and how many times he messed up, yet he was a man after God’s Own Heart. Living a righteous life is not manifested in what we do but in what we believe. If we believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died to save us and set us free, it will change how we live. We live what we believe. If your life is not defined by a consistent and continual turning toward God and walking in His Ways, then maybe it’s time to visit the Cross and start again. It is not how we start but how we finish. Faith fortifies righteousness because we are not worried about the world but just staying in the Presence of God at all cost. The Lord will lead you in right standing with God by His Spirit. (Psalm 25:8-10) It all begins with a commitment. “Oh Lord, I give my life to you! I trust you, My God!” (Psalm 25:1) Then look out because Heaven is about to pour out and fill your life with the goodness and faithfulness of God in both tangible and intangible ways simply because you chose righteousness. (Psalm 84:10) Joy and peace will overflow and abound in every circumstance and situation of your life. (Psalm 85:10-12) Because God desires righteousness over sacrifice. (Proverbs 21:3) Doing right is the difference between “push” and “pull”. It will open the door to God’s Presence each and every time.
Romans 10:2-4 (NLT)
I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal. For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law. For Christ has already accomplished the purpose for which the law was given. As a result, all who believe in him are made right with God.
It is imperative that all of God’s People know and understand the significance of righteousness to remain free from slavery to sin. Salvation is about making us right with God again. It has many rewards associated with our proximity to God. It has nothing to do with what we do but who He is. By refusing to do things God’s Way – we limit our own access it is not the Lord withholding anything from us. Righteousness is part of the divine character and nature of God and exemplified in His Children. Righteousness identifies us as God’s Child, but remaining true to sin makes us a child of the devil. (I John 3:7-8) Salvation that is lip-service will never hide the truth that is in our heart. God sees right through us. Christ is righteousness so as a follower of Jesus we must do right. (I John 2:29) Otherwise, we are not going in the same direction. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of God’s Throne. (Psalm 89:14) We must walk in righteousness to be where He is and experience the benefits found only in His Presence. Jesus Christ is a sacrifice for sin. (Romans 3:25-26) He paid the penalty for our freedom. Freedom to live in the righteousness of God and overcome man’s sinful nature. Now we are slaves to God and the desire to serve Him based on love and trust procured by faith and trust. To seek salvation with enthusiasm but not follow Christ is detrimental. God demonstrated His Righteousness in Jesus Christ. Jesus made it possible for us to be made right with God. It is time to live what we believe as Christians.
Romans 7:21-25 (NLT)
I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.
God’s Grace is for all those times we try to win the battle of sin but fall short. Don’t worry friend, you may have lost the battle but you will win the war by striving to live in the Righteousness of God through Jesus Christ. Just as the Lord warned Cain, He is speaking to His Beloved Children today. Do what is right or sin will overtake you! (Genesis 4:6-8) The enemy is at the door. (Amos 3:10-11) Cain chose sin and killed Abel according to the very next verse. I promise the enemy is paying very close attention to your life. He sits just on the other side of righteousness waiting to take you out. Don’t give in. God blesses the righteous and the Kingdom belongs to them. (Matthew 5:9-10) His Presence has impenetrable walls and high boundaries where the enemy has no place. In a world filled with “Cains” do not be surprised if the world hates you for being righteous, but you are not after the things of this world in your pursuit of perfection found in His Presence. (I John 3:12-13) This world is temporary, but His Kingdom is forever. Do you want “in” or “out” of His Presence today? The choice is yours thanks to Jesus Christ. By choosing to do right, we push into His Presence and access all the Promises of God for our life. Who wouldn’t want that?
Galatians 6:8-10 (NLT)
Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.
Pursuing God in a world that clearly hates Him can be quite the task. It requires time and energy to turn from our sinful nature and live a righteous life. It demands strict attention to His Will and Way found in His Word and lived by His Spirit. But in the end nothing will ever compare to the Harvest of Blessing that He has promised. It will be worth it all. Not just to us, but to those who we have called to demonstrate righteousness too as well. (Ezekiel 3:19-21) Living right is not all about you anymore, it is part of the Great Commission of the Lord Jesus Christ. (I Corinthians 15:34) It is a lifelong endeavor so don’t give up but press in. The best is yet to come. We must do EVERYTHING to make things right between us and God to live in close proximity to the Lord obtaining every promise along the way! (2 Corinthians 7:10-11) Righteousness must be the foundation of our life anchored by faith, hope and love in Jesus who is forever our access point to the Father. What are you waiting for? If you are pushing, maybe it is time to start pulling If you are pulling, maybe you should be pushing. If neither one is working, maybe the Lord is telling you to wait. No matter what the Lord is instructing you to do if you do it in righteousness – He will be your reward!
Isaiah 56:1-2 (NLT)
This is what the LORD says: “Be just and fair to all. Do what is right and good, for I am coming soon to rescue you and to display my righteousness among you. Blessed are all those who are careful to do this. Blessed are those who honor my Sabbath days of rest and keep themselves from doing wrong.
I John 5:5-8 (NLT)
And who can win this battle against the world? Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God. And Jesus Christ was revealed as God’s Son by his baptism in water and by shedding his blood on the cross—not by water only, but by water and blood. And the Spirit, who is truth, confirms it with his testimony. So we have these three witnesses—the Spirit, the water, and the blood—and all three agree.
It is 4:00 AM. The dog and I are the only two awake this morning. As I open the door to let him outside, the hot humid summer air overwhelms me. It feels wet even though it is not yet raining. You can smell it in the heaviness of the air. My first response is to loathe the inconvenience of the coming storm. I hate when my feet get wet and clothes are soaked. Running from place to place encumbered by an umbrella is inconvenient and slows everything down. But then I remember pulling in the driveway yesterday after church and taking in the rich green grass in the front yard that is a direct result of last week’s rain. Dry, brown broken pieces fully restored into luxurious splendor by afternoon showers that did not add one red cent to the water bill and even more breathtaking then that which is given by the due diligence of moving the sprinkler around by hand. It seems that when man does it there are still parts that are missed but when the Lord sends the rain, He covers it all. So maybe a storm with all its wind, rain and thunder isn’t so bad when we see the Favor of God released. Perhaps it is how the Lord gives us what He has been holding in safekeeping all this time. According to Dr. Jerry Grillo, “The size of our storm determines the size of our outpouring.” I believe that the Lord is preparing another storm and sending it my way. Can I stand the relative humidity? Will I be ready to receive all that He has for me when God sends the rain? Get ready for the rain.
Jesus Christ is coming back. I have heard it all my life but now I believe it. The storms of life seem to be coming back to back. Rain and more rain falling in the lives of people physically and spiritually. It is the biggest outpouring preparing us for the greatest revival of all time. Who can win the battle the war is waging against us? Only those who believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Many Christians would agree that they believe this basic foundational truth. Jesus Christ Jesus Christ is the Word. He died on the Cross shedding His Blood for our sins. Without this, there is no point in following Jesus another moment because aside from His Grace there is no hope. We cannot be washed by the Word until we are covered in His Blood. The Spirit who is Truth must be confirmed by Testimony which is God’s Word. All three must agree in our life – The Spirit, the Word and the Blood. If you are lost in this scenario, don’t worry I was, too. Most people understand and acknowledge the Person of Jesus Christ – Son of God, born of a woman, who died for the sins of all mankind. Some believers even agree on the Holy Spirit – the Holy Inhabitation of the Living God in His People to enable them to do the Will of God and what is pleasing to the Father. But few will ever take the time to understand the relevance and importance of the Word of God. Jesus is coming back and the Word of God is clear. The Spirit, the Word and the Blood must all agree.
John 1:1-5 (NLT)
In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He existed in the beginning with God. God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him. The Word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.
The Word was present from the very beginning. Everything ever created was made by His Word. The Word is a person. His Name is Jesus Christ. Since the Word is the identity of Jesus Christ, it cannot be separated from His Being. It is relevant always from beginning to end. Grace did not excuse us as individuals from being accountable to the Word of God or making it a relevant part of our life. It is absolutely necessary to live in agreement – Spirit, water and blood. Yet somehow we have lost sight of this precious truth in the name of grace. Light can shine in the darkness because it is the Word but living by any other standard puts us right back where we began. When man could not get a grip on obedience or the significance of God’s Word, it was wrapped in flesh and born of a woman who named Him Jesus. (John 1:14) Maybe now people would know, recognize and understand the significance of the Word. We have the opportunity to live because the Word came into fulfillment. So why do we choose to ignore it as outdated and useless when it is life to the believer? The Word will continue to through the end of this world throughout all Eternity. “Then the angel showed me a river with the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb. It flowed down the center of the main street. On each side of the river grew a tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, with a fresh crop each month. The leaves were used for medicine to heal the nations. No longer will there be a curse upon anything. For the throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants will worship him. And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads. And there will be no night there—no need for lamps or sun—for the Lord God will shine on them. And they will reign forever and ever.” (Revelation 22:1-5) To try to live by the Spirit covered by the Blood of Jesus without the Water of the Word is pointless. The Word of God is living water to our soul. We all need it. To thirst for it will cause us to find the river the flows from the Throne of God and access it now before we live forever.
John 7:37-39 (NLT)
On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’” (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)
Living water is an essential part of the Christian life. You must be filled with the Spirit and Living Water must flow from your heart. Where do we find living water? The Samaritan woman met Him at the well. Jesus promised her that anyone who drinks of this well will never thirst again. (John4:10-14) She was convinced so much so that she left her water pot behind and became a vessel of Living Water that day. (Verse 28) The Spirit and the Word should work together in our life. We cry out to God for answers and wonder why we don’t hear from Him. He already answered you when He sent the Word but have you taken the time to draw from His Well lately. God sends the Word like rain. (Deuteronomy 32:2) It comes in written and spoken form. Written Word requires energy on our part to discover His Promises and pull them out for ourselves. It is a spiritual investment of time and energy in knowing and understanding the God we serve and His Son – Jesus. People literally die of thirst naturally and spiritually. (Hosea 4:6) His Word is ready and available in your life provided by God accessible by Jesus Christ. (Isaiah 58:11) Are you thirsty for the Lord today? His Word is Living Water for your soul. He sends it freely like rain. Life exists where waters flow. (Ezekiel 47:9)
Isaiah 41:17-18 (NLT)
“When the poor and needy search for water and there is none, and their tongues are parched from thirst, then I, the LORD, will answer them. I, the God of Israel, will never abandon them. I will open up rivers for them on the high plateaus. I will give them fountains of water in the valleys. I will fill the desert with pools of water. Rivers fed by springs will flow across the parched ground.”
God has given us His Word. Those who thirst after righteousness will be filled. (Matthew 5:6) Trouble is we don’t want God’s Way just His Will. We want the inheritance of God but do not want God Himself. He might cramp our style with His Plan so many people shove grace out in front as a welcome mat to sin. It doesn’t matter how I live as long as I drag grace along with me. Grace is not baggage – it is the door to freedom. You cannot take it with you but must walk through it to be righteous. His Spirit gives us the power to do the Will of God, His Way. His Word shows us the path of righteousness leveling the mountains in our life by wielding faith that has substance. God is opening up rivers in your life today. It will come like rain. There may be some storms, but God is making a way for you. Don’t be afraid of the rain. (Isaiah 43:2) Water and rain cover the earth making things grow. (Isaiah 55:10-11) The Lord will grow you in the storm by faith watered by His Word.
Matthew 14:25-32 (NLT)
About three o’clock in the morning Jesus came toward them, walking on the water. When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!” But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here.” Then Peter called to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.” “Yes, come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted. Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?” When they climbed back into the boat, the wind stopped.
The storms of life reveal our refuge. Most of the disciple stayed in the boat rowing for dear life, but Peter got out of the boat to meet Jesus in the water. When he came to the edge of his faith and began to sink, Jesus caught him. Each storm we face in life takes us to the edge of our faith so we can see how much we love and trust the Lord. Remember what the words of Isaiah, God is sending the rain to water and nourish our faith. I guess the real question is whether or not we are thirsty for God? Do you pant for God’s Presence? (Psalm 42:1-2) Are we earnestly searching for the Lord in a dry and thirsty land? (Psalm 63:1-3) He will satisfy your thirst. (Psalm 107:8-9; Psalm 145:16) You will never be thirsty again by choosing a life of righteousness. (Isaiah 49:10) God’s Favor is in the showers of life. (Isaiah 55:1) If you choose to live in agreement with the Spirit, Word and Blood, you will never thirst again. (John 6:35-36) Faith in Jesus Christ that allows us to move in closer even when it means moving out of our comfort zone by is called believing. Belief is the action behind faith. If you believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who died for your sins, that His Blood is the only way to get to Heaven and His Spirit lives inside of you then the Word will be satisfying to your soul enough to go after Him. Storms reveal our level of faith and will produce more faith. (Mark 4:36-41) Soon you will do whatever it takes to reach Him! Peter didn’t have to walk on water anymore to believe in the Power of Jesus Christ. He didn’t need a miracle. In the end, He responded only to His Word. (John 21:6-8)
John 2:6-10 (NLT)
Standing nearby were six stone water jars, used for Jewish ceremonial washing. Each could hold twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus told the servants, “Fill the jars with water.” When the jars had been filled, he said, “Now dip some out, and take it to the master of ceremonies.” So the servants followed his instructions. When the master of ceremonies tasted the water that was now wine, not knowing where it had come from (though, of course, the servants knew), he called the bridegroom over. “A host always serves the best wine first,” he said. “Then, when everyone has had a lot to drink, he brings out the less expensive wine. But you have kept the best until now!”
When we become an empty vessel, miracles will happen. When the rain comes, if we are filled with the Water of the Word – it will manifest into God’s Promise for His Glory. Are you a vessel of God today or a garbage can for the world’s waste? It matters when the storm comes. Will “rivers of living water” flow out? Or will God still be cleaning you out? It really is up to you! There is the smell of rain today. What will you do when the storm finally gets here? Will you stand in the rain or will “your world” come crashing down? (Luke 6:47-49) It is all about the foundation. Faith built on the Word of God will last forever. Anything else is sinking sand and will be destroyed. God desires to give you His Very Best. He has laid out careful instructions in obtaining it – all of it. How far will you go to find Living Water? How deep will you dig in this thing called faith? The Lord is about to pour His Very Best into your life if you are ready to receive it? We can all receive from God as His Vessels if we have not accepted the world’s substitutions. Your miracle is about to happen according to His Spirit, His Word and the Blood if we choose to live in agreement with all three. It is very humid outside today. Better grab an umbrella but instead of covering your head, turn it upside down and catch every promise that is falling. God loves you! He has given you all you need to prosper. It comes in the rain!
Deuteronomy 32:1-4 (NLT)
“Listen, O heavens, and I will speak! Hear, O earth, the words that I say! Let my teaching fall on you like rain; let my speech settle like dew. Let my words fall like rain on tender grass, like gentle showers on young plants. I will proclaim the name of the LORD; how glorious is our God! He is the Rock; his deeds are perfect. Everything he does is just and fair. He is a faithful God who does no wrong; how just and upright he is!”