No More Resolutions

No More Resolutions

2 Peter 1:4-5 (NLT) And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires. In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. 

Renew. Restore. Revive. Radical. Reckless. To respond. The “R”’s of my rambling for 2018. Tonight at sundown or a little after, our family will begin our annual fast for the New Year. For eleven days, through fasting and prayer, as a body of believers (yes, just the four of us), we will seek the Face of God for many areas of our life. To focus our family and life in one direction. The Way. To turn away from the worthless things that so easily captivate our attention and rob us of time. As I began to write in my journal today, I found these words forming from the ink of the pen. I am asking the Lord to renew me from the inside out. To restore me after a month of minor illness and inconvenience. To revive my passion and desire to pursue Him wholeheartedly leaving behind the distractions from 2017. To make my love for others radical in recognition of His Love for me. To be reckless in my pursuit of Christ making faith seem the only option. To respond to all of God’s Promises. To believe that God is doing exactly what He said and to let His Spirit fortify my fickle heart. I can make a list of habits to change, budgets to follow, and schedules to keep but if Christ is not the priority in all of them – what’s the point?

No more resolutions. The power to change is the Christ in me. It is not something I do but what He does in me. I am giving up on resolutions and instead this year I choose to respond to God’s Promises instead. Why? Because of His Glory and Excellence, He has given (me) great and precious promises. These promises enable (me) to share in His Divine Nature. A resolution is a firm decision on my part to do or not to do something any longer. It is the action of solving a problem, dispute or contentious matter. It is me. A resolution is self-resolve to fix something that appears to be broken or dysfunctional. Well…I have come to the conclusion after fifty-one years of life – I can’t fix it. I cannot make “me” a better person. I am going to fail. I will mess up. I will fall short. I will give up, give in and give out depending on the situation. The only good thing in me is Jesus Christ. The Power of Christ is manifested in my weakness. So this year, I no longer resolve to make me a better person but let Christ transform me into a new creation. (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Titus 3:4-7 (NLT) But—When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior. Because of his grace he made us right in his sight and gave us confidence that we will inherit eternal life.

Jesus Christ revealed God’s Kindness and Love for us. When He saved us, it was finished. The process of redemption complete. The renewal process made available to all mankind. He washed our sin away. Gave us a new birth and new life through His Spirit. Generously His Spirit is on us identifying us as God’s Precious Children. It is said that you do not pick your parents which is absolutely true. In this case specifically, God chose you. He chose me. God, the Father, decided that He loved us and wanted us. His Reckless Love would stop at nothing to have us. I wonder what would happen if for just a moment, a single solitary second, we could completely wrap our head around the Truth that the entire process of salvation and redemption is a direct result of the Love of God. He had no other intention but to pour out unfailing love and unfathomable goodness on His Beloved. Would we respond differently? Absolutely. Religion would be crushed beneath the heaviness of unconditional love in the church and “whosoever come” would be plastered over the doors and altars while those who want to be loved would come pouring in.

Because of his grace he made us right in his sight and gave us confidence that we will inherit eternal life. Grace is the reason that God loves me and is for me. It is the essence of relationship that if we could just wrap our heads tightly around it – faith would not be so hard and confident hope the common sense of our life. We can go into the world and try to share the love of Jesus Christ but until we understand that His Love, Grace and Kindness are for us and there is nothing further that we can do but receive it – our message is in vain. Perfect love casts out all fear. Fearless faith comes from a heart that comes to know God’s Unfailing Love and accepts it as a way of life. This will enable us to “respond” to God’s Promises rather than trying to earn them or deserve them which cannot be done.

Proverbs 3:3-4 (ESV) Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart. So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man.

This year it is my deepest desire to live in God’s Steadfast Love and Faithfulness to the fullest. I must bind His Promises around my neck and continually inscribe them on my heart. My love is imperfect. It tends to be conditional. It has flaws and faults that the Lord continually works on. I will never love like Jesus unless I love through Jesus. The Christ in me must be given wide open space. The Spirit in me must be the ruler of my heart, mind, soul and body at all times. The Favor of God and Good Success that I believe God has promised us is not in my ability to do everything right this year, but to continually seek the Lord wholeheartedly. I must decrease so that He can increase.

I wonder what would happen in our natural life if we lived as though supernatural promises were inevitable. What if we decided that God is good, His Love unfailing, His Grace enough, and His Faithfulness forever? Would it change the potential of our life? Would it change us? We must invest our mind, soul, body and spirit into obtaining the promises of God which begins by believing that they actually exist and are obtainable rather than living a diversified life with one foot in the world and the other in the Kingdom. It is impossible to establish dual residency with God. He is not a wishy washy – halfhearted God. You love Him or you hate Him. There is no coexistence in the Kingdom. You embrace Christ or idols. See we live in a world of moving lines and shifting sand – it makes a completely constant God who is always good and always loving and always kind very hard to believe so we must not lean on our own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5)

2 Peter 1:5-7 (NLT) In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.

Responding to the Promises of God. This is my resolve for this New Year. This is the year that I will allow God to be God and simply cling to Him. I must supplement faith with qualities and characteristics produced by God’s Spirit inside of me. I must embrace and acknowledge the Holy Spirit as He is my teacher, guide, counselor and even comforter in the process of becoming a new creation. Transformation is not comfortable. It is inconvenient. It is uncontrollable. It takes time that I don’t think I have. Yet, in the end, it will all be worth it. Forever is the past, present and future wrapped neatly into a package called life. God knows the beginning from the end. It is His Unfailing Love and Faithfulness that has brought you this far and will carry you through. You have done nothing to facilitate the process other than present your worthless life to Jesus Christ. Rather than making any more resolutions. This year I am changing my resolve. I want all that God has for me. I must submit my life to Christ all over again. All of it. Holding nothing back, making the decision that this life is not about me – nevertheless Christ is for me. His Promises are real. His Love is true. His Word lasts forever. He is faithful. To this I will respond…

Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV) Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.


Brand New You

Brand New You

2 Corinthians 5:17-19 (NIV)

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.

It’s that time of year when people decide to make positive changes and pursue better choices in life. I have not made resolutions for a number of years now. I do have goals. I live by the list if you will. I am constantly writing it down, mulling over it and going after it. Whatever “it” is. I wasn’t always that way and I am really not sure when it happened. Some call it maturity. Maybe it comes with age. As a young person, I seldom finished what I started. But in 1990, my life changed for the better. I became a mother for the first time. I felt meaning and purpose in that little baby’s existence. I had achieved what I know now was one of God’s many callings on my life. I relished it. I enjoyed it. I was challenged by it. The Lord blessed us with five amazing children. They are all different and unique filled with purpose and potential that it is our pleasure to see unfold in their lives.

In the past five years, there has been a subtle shift occurring slow in coming. When you have a houseful of children and not a moment of silence, it seems like the day will never come when you and your spouse have time alone. We have always had children with us. With two boys grown and gone, the house grew a little (or a lot) quieter. The pantry seemed fuller. Our daughter married and moved away. Now there are empty rooms and it seems like our house just got bigger overnight. Suddenly, I am faced with the task of finding the new me in the midst of transition. With only two girls left at home, one on the verge of adulthood it is clear that it is only a matter of time before my purpose will change and transform to the new one that the Lord has for the next stage of my life. Change is hard. Especially if we do not want it or like the ways things are. When our life is bettered by our relationship with Jesus, it is easy to become comfortable and complacent with the change so far and stop seeking that “glory to glory” promised in His Word. Guilty as charged. I was not sure that I wanted this new role that is coming. I like being a mom. It is who I am.

If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old one is gone. The new is here. We are the message of reconciliation to the world. However, what I have decided through the Word of God and a whole lot of prayer in this transition is that new is not like the world offers it. It is not an overnight process but the process achieved as we live our life constantly moving closer to the Lord. What you think you are today may not be who He created you to be tomorrow? I can set goals. I can make plans. But ultimately it is the Lord’s Plan that will prevail in my life. (Psalm 33:11; Proverbs 16:9; Proverbs 19:21) What does this mean? To live the life that God created you to live and Christ died for you to have means reconciliation to Jesus Christ not once but every single day of our natural life. It requires change that may be uncomfortable and even unwelcome.

Romans 5:9-11 (NIV)

Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

When sin made us God’s Enemies, Jesus died for us to be reconciled back to God and attain right standing or righteousness again. There are many differing opinions about this process. I think I have lived them all. I have been the one who wandered down the aisle to pray and receive Christ not really knowing what I was doing or what I was asking. I have been the one who answered a pastor’s call to return to Christ because all that was required is calling on the Name of Jesus. Left the church and wandered right back into the wilderness of life. It was not until I completely wrecked myself and figured out that the way I was living amounted to nothing but devastation and destruction that I realized until I walked down to the altar ready to give something back I would continue to leave unchanged. I do believe in once saved always saved. It is more than words mumbled in regret. It is not one prayer but a life of communicating with our God, Savior and Lord with the Holy Spirit’s Help. To come before God with no intent to change, be delivered, healed, changed or restored is not going to ever amount to anything. The first act of reconciliation is to come to Jesus Christ with the express purpose of asking Him to be our Savior which means leaving sin, shame, guilt and regret behind to become the new creation that a life reconciled to God produces.

Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ through whom we have now received reconciliation. How much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through this life? There is more to life than an altar call and simple prayer. You are not forced to live in freedom. You do not have to walk in the Blessings of God. You do not HAVE TO DO anything. Reconciliation is the act of reconciling. To reconcile means to bring into agreement or harmony and make more compatible. When we give up sin to accept salvation, this is immediate. It is how we achieve right standing with God the Father. But it is not the end of God’s Creative Process in our life. To reconcile means to settle (Isaiah 1:18) and reconsecrate our existence. To give our life up for greater purpose. It is an active choice with great reward. As we reconcile our life to God, lining up our life to His Word, Will and Way something wonderful begins to happen and we are restored.

Romans 6:5-7 (NIV)

For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.


2 Corinthians 3:3-6 (NIV)

You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such confidence we have through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

If you want to be a brand new you this year, there are certain things that must occur. You cannot do everything the same way that you did them last year. You must pursue positive change. If your desire is a closer, deeper and more meaningful relationship with God through His Son, Jesus Christ it will require reconciliation in a two-step process. First, you must take a walk to the Cross and give up your old self. I venture to the Cross daily because I need His Grace more and more. The more I live the more I know I cannot make it a day without God’s Love and Mercy in my life. I can stop right there and live in the cataclysmic cycle of sin and repentance that leads nowhere but circling the wilderness. Constantly battling my flesh without resolution, I can never move on to what God has purposed for me to do or fully see the potential of my creation or salvation. Merry-go-rounds are fun and entertaining unless you have to live on one that would be insanity.

We must not only reconcile our sin to the Cross but our life to God. He doesn’t leave us high and dry but gives us His Spirit to live in us and partner with us in our pursuit of complete reconciliation. To be new is not something that we do, but what Jesus does in us taking the good that is placed in us and allowing it to grow, develop and mature into the new creation hidden there all along. We are not competent to produce such change in our life that leads to completion only compromise. It is the God in us that restores us to His Glorious Standard of Life.


Colossians 1:19-23 (NIV)

 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel.

As I venture into this season of change and become who I am in addition to being a daughter, wife, mom, friend, church member and employee – it is with great expectation. I have decided to quit trying to reconcile my life to human expectation. I didn’t even make a list of personal goals for the coming year. Like many years in the past, we are fasting and praying for 21 days. We have been doing it for two and it is clear that the Lord has been trying to get my attention for some time. This is a brand new year. It is a new season in our life. It is time to embrace the new things that the Lord is doing. I can only do this by reconciling my life to Him.

Last month, our bank account did not add up. I am one of those crazy people who still keeps a check register even though I do not write checks. Everything that goes in and out. When my account balance and the register did not agree, it began to drive me nuts. I thrive on order. Character flaw for sure. Finally, I sat down to review each transaction and found the problem. I had made a mathematical error. Even though it was a costly one, I was satisfied when I fixed it because things were in order and right. Life is not random. We are created with a purpose and plan that is made by a Sovereign God who does not change His Mind or make mistakes. Even when we deviate from the Truth, it does not change anything about our life. His Plan is still intact. His Purpose will continue to prevail. Our participation is that of reconciliation. If I want God’s Best in my life, I must continue to live in agreement and harmony with God’s Word, Will and Way because He is relentless. Not because He is a mean god, but because He is a Good Father who is intent on the very best for His Beloved Children.

Titus 3:4-7 (NIV)

But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.


It is pointless to participate in a religion without a relationship with Jesus Christ. Reconciliation is proof that someone intends to live in unity, harmony and agreement with their Savior and make Him their Lord. What is the point of going to church and doing good things if in the end you still die? You’ve left your mark on the world. What does that matter – this world will die and pass away? Unless we have established a place in the Kingdom of God, we will go with it even our good reputation and earthly legacy is nothing when the end comes. But those who endure to the end will be saved.

Today is the Day of Salvation and beginning of a new life of rebirth and renewal that has the potential and promise to carry out every purpose and plan that God intended for your life. Jesus came to give us a full and abundant life with complete satisfaction so that we lack no good thing. His Spirit completes this process in the yielded life that pursues reconciliation with God completely accepting His Standard of Living that far exceeds what we can even think to ask for. It is a new season for you. It is a new day. God’s Favor is ready and waiting. It will not begin with anything you do or say. It is not according to how much self-control, motivation or determination one can muster. It is a commitment to become the new creation and accepting the new life offered by Jesus Christ and learning to reconcile our entire existence to God and His Kingdom. I want to be that brand new person in 2016. How about you?

Ephesians 3:14-21 (NIV)

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

It Is Written

It Is Written

Matthew 4:4 (NIV)

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

The New Year is finally here. The new thing that God has promised will come to pass in this year if you want it, desire it and pursue it. I believe that with all of my heart, mind and soul. However, to have what God has promised as you prepared to enter this new chronicle of time requires a change. You cannot expect a different outcome doing exactly the same thing. Radical change is required for radical results. Many people have a list of New Year’s Resolutions. Top two are probably heath and financially related. Am I warm? Or probably spot on. The church across America prepares for the annual Daniel’s Fast that has spread like wildfire. We have been doing the Daniel for about a decade now I think – give or take. Handouts, pamphlets and booklets have been provided with a long list of foods that you can and more importantly cannot have. Starbucks braces for a steep fall in sales as the caffeine addicts attempt to go cold turkey. Lord, help us all. The health food aisle and produce section of the local grocery is stocking its shelves for the army of resolutionists and fasters to come empty their supply. There are support groups for those seeker better health such as Weight Watchers as gym memberships soar in the month of January. The church has blogs, menus and messages to encourage the Daniel Fasters to stay on course, not to give up telling us just how to eat and survive 21 days of no meats, sweets, bread or caffeine. However, on the morning of this brand new day filled with good intentions, I am lead to a somber reminder. “Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the Mouth of God.” I wonder where that came from…

Exodus 24:12 (NIV)

The Lord said to Moses, “Come up to me on the mountain and stay here, and I will give you the tablets of stone with the law and commandments I have written for their instruction.”

God provided Moses with His Word that would become the Book of Covenant. As Moses shared the Book of Covenant with the people they agreed that they would obey the Lord. (Exodus 24:7) So we know that Moses is ushered into God’s Presence, and is given the Ten Commandments. He would spend 40 days and 40 nights with God. During that time, we know that the people who had agreed and vowed that “everything the Lord has said we will do” change their mind and decide to make a god to worship that is in the form of a golden calf. God sees this and sends Moses back to the people with the stone tablets written by His Hand. The time that Moses spends in the Presence of God is filled with instruction on the elements and activities of how to worship God corporately. (Exodus 25-31) We have the rules and now this is how to worship.

Exodus 34:4-7 (NIV)

So Moses chiseled out two stone tablets like the first ones and went up Mount Sinai early in the morning, as the Lord had commanded him; and he carried the two stone tablets in his hands. Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the Lord. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.”

After Moses throws down the first two tablets and destroys them, there is no mention of them again until now in Exodus 34. Moses has been in the Presence of God since that time but has not recorded his time there. In Exodus 33, Moses is with the Lord, he begins to remind God of His Very Words to him and it is clear that he has some natural questions. The Lord responds to His Servant and tells him, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” I believe the word “rest” means peace as well. Moses responds by telling God if you do not come with us then do not make us go. Again, the Lord promises Moses, I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.” Moses then asks the Lord to show him His Glory. (Exodus 33) God tells Moses to come to the mountain, again with two tablets chiseled out of stone. Moses does just what the Lord asks and arrives on Mount Sinai early the next morning.

The Glory of God is His Presence. It is promised to His People in limitless supply. The Holy Spirit is given to those who desire Him freely and without limitation. When Moses approached the Lord desiring His Glory, it was when the Lord revealed personal and intimate worship details to him. No longer was it all about the tabernacle but the Temple of the Living God. This is what you must do Moses. This is what my people must do all proceeded by the Knowledge of our God who is compassionate, gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love. God introduces relationship rather than religion. The place where we choose to commune with the Lord. Though the veil was still intact and sin kept us from entering the Holy of Holies. God was still available to those who loved Him and dared to pursue Him beyond religion seeking a relationship. God would provide the Ten Commandments again. The Presence of God allows us to move past performance to achieve rest and peace with God.

Deuteronomy 30:9-10 (NIV)

Then the Lord your God will make you most prosperous in all the work of your hands and in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your land. The Lord will again delight in you and make you prosperous, just as he delighted in your ancestors, if you obey the Lord your God and keep his commands and decrees that are written in this Book of the Law and turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Before the death of Jesus for our sins, religion was all that people had to move closer into the Presence of God. God gave them the Ten Commandments to follow and sacrifice to atone for their transgressions. If you think about the steps of sacrifice given the time in which they lived it would seem easier to avoid the sin then pay the price of that sin. There is no doubt that religion produced prosperity in God’s People – the Israelites. They came out of captivity with opulent wealth producing gold and more in the midst of the wilderness. The Word works in our life even when we do not pursue intimacy with God. It has the power alone to make us successful and prosperous in ordinary life. If you obey the Lord your God and keep His Commands and Decrees that are written in the Book of the Law and turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul…He will prosper your hands and the fruit of your womb. This was God’s Promise to the Jews. This would be completed by Jesus Christ on the Cross allowing us – the Gentiles – to enjoy the same benefits as God’s Chosen and to be blessed by His Presence and experience His Glory. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” (Joshua 1:8)

Romans 15:4-8 (NIV)

 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews on behalf of God’s truth, so that the promises made to the patriarchs might be confirmed

I know what you are thinking. What does this have to do with New Years? I thought we were talking about fasting. Or maybe resolutions for a more successful and prosperous New Year? Look lady, I just want to be blessed. We move from the Old Testament (often left behind at the Cross) to move into the New Testament. Now every man and woman who desires a relationship with God is able to do so through His Son, Jesus Christ. Everyone without exception. Now what? Well, according to most churches, just wade through His Grace, get covered in His Blood and live your life. You are saved. I agreed that the Blood of Jesus is all we need to be saved. However, He must be our Savior and Lord. The Lord part is what we struggle with not so much calling Him Savior. See the word “Savior” itself implies that Jesus did all the work. Now how do we make Him our Lord? We must serve Him. Lordship will always require obedience. We must be of the same attitude and act like Jesus Christ with one mind and one voice glorifying God.

To make a New Year’s Resolution is common each year. If you look at last year’s list, there are probably some things that are again on this one, too. Human nature does not embrace change. It rebels against it especially if it leads to the end of self. To be one with Jesus Christ and live in His Presence to experience His Glory means to become one with Him. If you want this year to be different, you cannot do the same things. This is just common sense. If you fast just like last year worrying more about what you eat in the natural rather than feasting on God’s Word, your life will not yield the fruit that God has promised. Again, it is just common sense.

Matthew 4:4 (NIV)

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit to the wilderness to fast and pray for 40 days and nights. Funny, that sounds familiar huh? After fasting 40 days and 40 nights, Jesus was hungry. No really it says that in Matthew 4:2. He was God in man so Jesus still had human feelings and emotions. The enemy came to tempt Jesus. Of course, he did just like he will do to us during our Daniel fast if we remain faithful in doing so. “If you are Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” What the enemy was telling Jesus was look you don’t have to change or suffer or endure or doing anything you do not want to do, just make bread and be satisfied (paraphrased and embellished, of course but you get the picture.) Your flesh is going to fight any positive change you try to make naturally and spiritually as it exerts its independence and dominance in your life. The devil continued to tempt Jesus and each time the Lord countered with the Word of God. Now He is God, too so why would Jesus use the historical word from the Bible rather than just throwing down on satan in His Own Power and Authority as He would in future text? For you. For me. To be our example as we strive for a deeper, closer and more powerful connection. The Lord is showing us that the Word of God is essential to make the change that we desire. Obedience is absolutely a necessity based on the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit led Jesus to fast and pray in the wilderness for 40 days and nights. It was the Word of God that sustained Him.

John 1:1-5 (NIV)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.

John 1:14 (NIV)

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

The Word of God is eternal. Through God’s Word, everything was spoken into existence. With His Hand, He has recorded the days of our life (Psalm 139:15-17) including working every detail for our good (Romans 8:28) and supplying everything we need. (Philippians 4:19) Through Christ all things were made and without Him, I am nothing. Jesus is the Word wrapped in flesh never contradicting the Word but confirming it in His Life, Death and Resurrection that all may be saved, healed, delivered and set free to live in His Kingdom forever. We cannot forget the Word, ignore it, change it, or refuse to obey it and still live in unity as Children of God. It is impossible.

Today as we begin to move forward into the coming year and make the changes that we believe are necessary to live successful, prosperous lives, we must know this that if our desire is to live in unity with God and walk with Jesus Christ – His Word is essential and necessary which means that obedience will be as well. To fast without praying is useless. To pray without reading and meditating on God’s Word will lead to nothing more than frustration. To fast without pursuing the Presence of God is nothing more than a religious diet which you will give up on half way through as your flesh will overcome the weak spirit inside you. Man cannot live on bread alone but EVERY WORD that proceeds from the Mouth of God. That means it is all relevant and true. It means it IS directed and you. It is a requirement for greater intimacy and expectancy from God. Until we take God’s Word and digest it and use it to change us – our lives may seem to get better but we will never find totally rest and peace provided by total faith and confident hope in the Living God.


“It is written.” Your life. Your destiny. Your hope. Your dreams. Your plans. Your life is found in Jesus Christ. To have the best life you can possibly have will mean radically obeying the Word that completely contradicts your flesh. We all have some level of self-control but God’s Spirit can bear the fruit of complete self-control that allows us to live faithfully obedient to God. He works on us from the inside out. Are you one of those listening to the Man or Woman of God telling you what God says responding affirmatively like the Israelites? “Everything the Lord has said we will do.” Without Jesus, His Word and His Spirit, you will not make it 21 days much less 40 days or even through the coming year. The Presence of God is available. It cannot be entered by anyone who does not believe or continues in darkness holding on to sin. We must let it all go in the flow. The Flow of Blood that gives way to grace so we can come boldly before the Throne of God as we call Jesus our Savior and Lord. Fasting and praying requires the Word of God as a steady diet. When the enemy comes to tempt you, taunt you or trick you into giving up or giving it, it is your only response that will cause him to flee. Many blessings in this New Year are hidden in the Presence of God – it is written which makes it so. The new thing God has promised in within reach for those who are clinging to Jesus, His Word and His Way.

Isaiah 43:19 (NIV)

See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.