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Home Is A Family, Not A House

with love coffee

Two nights ago I told my daughter goodnight for the last time in the house she grew up in.  I saw tears as they began to stream down her face as I released her from our nightly hug.  I knew what it was.  This house is the only ‘home’ she has ever known.  She lived at college for 3 years but I found out she cried there, too.

No greater compliment can a child give a parent than to cry because they are leaving ‘home’.   This time home was house, a structure.  What truly makes a home is the family that dwells in it.  I reminded her of that and that we would still be together because she moved with us. 

The move is still going on.  We are all exhausted!  This is our first night in our new place and the first thing to happen was the kitchen faucet broke into pieces.  Water sprayed everywhere like an exploding volcano.  Water dripped from the cabinets, the ceiling, and it spilled all over the floor.  My husband quickly turned the valve off and I can say the place is now spotless!   :)

I could feel the angst building in us all.  Even Gracie is tense and seems scared.  God reminded me this is when we are to become very sober and vigilant, as it says in 1 Peter.  The enemy was doing everything he could to steal our joy and to bring upset and strife among us on a day we should have been celebrating. 

After we had cleaned our temporary home, the Lord reminded me of something Reverend Mark Hankins says.  He cites the scripture ‘Count it all joy when you fall into various trials and temptations….”  He ends it by saying with each trying thing that comes you say, ‘One joy, two joy, three joy!”  NEVER let satan rob you of your life giving joy!  It is your strength!

There was a book by the title of “If the Devil Can’t Steal Your Joy, He Can’t Keep Your Goods” by Jerry Savelle.  That title says it all.  When it rains, get under God’s umbrella of protection by staying in the spirit!  He says He hides us in the cleft of the rock.  We are safe from the storms that come to steal our peace, joy, and confidence in the Lord.

How quickly our situation could have soured if we had chosen wrong attitudes.  How we could have prolonged the blessing the Lord has already prepared in advance!  Nope…not this time!  It feels good to grow up.  It is wonderful knowing that the very things you would have fallen for before, God has brought you to a place you see it coming and you know how to avert it! 

We are home, though temporarily in this ‘structure’, and this is an enjoyable season of our life!  God has blessed us, and even in our exhaustion, we are going to be thankful and relish it!  We are together and God is in our midst…what greater home could you have?

 

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The Enlightenment of A Mind Brings Understanding

nativity

I have heard Joyce Meyer say many times how we will go around and around the mountain until we learn our lesson.  Then we will cross the mountain into our ‘promised land’ when we learn the lesson and move on.

There has been a mountain in my life for so many years, I really don’t remember how long!  As I look back, this particular mountain (I’m not going to tell you specifically what it is…lol…not telling on myself this time!) has been in my way since I was a young woman.  One day I began to really wonder about it.  Why did it always seem to crop up? 

I went to the Lord with it because, frankly, I was sick of it!  The Lord spoke to me the reason satan always used it was to get me off focus and to prevent me from moving into something He had planned for me.  Seriously??????  I write about NOT doing this all the time!  How could I have been so foolish as to not see this in my OWN life???  The answer is easy…I was concentrating on the wrong thing!  Again, I write on this, too.  Yes, I had to shake my own head at myself!

I learned our understanding can actually be clouded and brought out of focus with thoughts.  Many times we like to blame the devil for them.  He is responsible for some of them, but we are just as responsible because we let him pour them in and then we build on them. 

Have y0u ever seen someone have a pity party?  Usually there is something unfortunate that has happened, but they will take that isolated event of misfortune and turn it into a lifetime of woes!  Who did that?  Well, the devil could have brought the misfortune, but we chose to look back through life at everything that didn’t go just like we thought it should have and, BAM, you are in a full fledged, crocodile tear pity party!  What makes it worse is when friends and family remind us of how blessed we are now.  Then we get mad and decide to isolate ourselves because we are looking for sympathy NOT reassurances and reminders of how good God really has been to us!  I mean that kind of crashes a pity party!!

I finally got sick of the whole pity party trip!  I had, had enough of the scenery of this mountain and when I got to that point, God opened my eyes to what was REALLY happening in the spirit!  When He did, I knew what I needed to do.   I knew it was something I could overcome, because I saw satan’s antics and I knew how untrue they were.  I saw the “fork” in the road and what would happen with the road I took.  There was a good road where God would have me go, and there was a road of self will that led to nothing but more misery.  Hmmm….do we really need to think about this one??

Thank God I saw the light and I don’t say that jokingly!  I really saw it!  I put my foot down and this was one time I said a few words to the devil!  “Forget it!  I know what you are doing and there is no way I am putting up with this anymore.  Do y0u honestly think for one second I would be stupid enough to listen to your foolishness and let you ruin the rest of my life??  I rebuke you, satan, in the mighty name of Jesus!  And don’t come back with this again!  God directs my life and no one and nothing else does!!”   That was the end of the MOUNTAIN EXPERIENCE!!  Oh, yes, it was that easy!  I literally felt it when it happened.  It was as if I had run a marathon and I had WON THE WHOLE THING!!!  I felt the exhileration of victory because I knew it was over and I had defeated, through Christ Jesus, something that had tried to control me almost my whole life!

Freedom feels good, friend…so does moving forward!  It isn’t fun staying stuck in the mud.  You get hungry, dirty, and time and others are passing you by.  Are you going around and around a mountain?  Sick of it?  You are in a good place!  Here is a prayer that will get you out of the mess and into the promise.  I pray this straight from the word and I have saved the best for last.  When you pray this, put YOUR name in it and your loved ones names.  I promise you a spirit of Revelation WILL come upon you and them.  When you finally get REVELATION, it is all over but the crying….this time it will be the devil crying instead of you!!  Try it!  You have nothing to lose!

Ephesians 1:17-23

Amplified Bible (AMP)

17 [For I always pray to] the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, that He may grant you a spirit of wisdom and revelation [of insight into mysteries and secrets] in the [deep and intimate] knowledge of Him,

18 By having the eyes of your heart flooded with light, so that you can know and understand the hope to which He has called you, and how rich is His glorious inheritance in the saints (His set-apart ones),

19 And [so that you can know and understand] what is the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us who believe, as demonstrated in the working of His mighty strength,

20 Which He exerted in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His [own] right hand in the heavenly [places],

21 Far above all rule and authority and power and dominion and every name that is named [above every title that can be conferred], not only in this age and in this world, but also in the age and the world which are to come.

22 And He has put all things under His feet and has appointed Him the universal and supreme Head of the church [a headship exercised throughout the church],

23 Which is His body, the fullness of Him Who fills all in all [for in that body lives the full measure of Him Who makes everything complete, and Who fills everything everywhere with Himself].

God bless you, precious reader!  Go forward filled with the light of Christ knowing He, Himself makes His home within y0u if you are born again!  If you will listen and watch, He will show you all you need to know for successful living!  What a glorious promise!  See you next time!!  Remember, JESUS IS LORD!!!

 

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Daily Bible Devotion-Choose Joy!

CHOOSE JOY

 

 

DAILY BIBLE DEVOTION

I used to think a Christian should never cry, never have blah days, never have a day they weren’t just one constant ray of sunshine…then life happened to me!  You are going to have days where the enemy will say “Oh, pooh they are up!  Let’s just bring them down!”  Why?  Because the joy of the Lord is your strength!  Because when you have the joy of the Lord, nobody and no thing can keep you down!

The devil wants to bring us “down” because it makes us want to isolate ourselves, stay at home, feel like we are no good to anyone, exhaust us, and eventually make us think our lives are hopeless.  He wants to “take us out of the game” so to speak!  Why would he want to do that?  Because if he can take the best players out first, he has won with very little resistance!

He doesn’t want to do it for a season either!  He will do it the rest of your life if you let him!  Notice I said “let him”.  In John 14:1 it says, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me.”  There are some key words to look at here.

1.  LET NOT-Jesus is saying here for US to not allow our hearts to be worried or stirred up, or to be agitated according to the Greek.  In our current venacular it means irritated, bothered, irked.   Our hearts really means our minds.  We have control over our minds.  Sometimes it doesn’t feel like it but we don’t live on feelings but by the truth of God’s Word!  In other words, stop allowing yourself to be upset!

I have to tell you the truth, precious reader, this scripture used to really aggravate me!  That is a horrible thing to admit, I know, but it is the truth.  I used to tell God, “Father, WHO in their RIGHT MIND would CHOOSE to be upset???”  I wanted GOD to take it from me.  I didn’t want Him to say I was allowing it!  But, I WAS allowing it.  I didn’t know how to NOT allow it!  That is where my frustration came in.  Praise God one day I finally got what the problem was.  I was not rebuking those anxious thoughts and agreeing with God’s Word.

Anxiety always hit me first thing in the morning!  Instead of the devil saying, “Oh, pooh she is up!”   I was saying, “Oh, pooh I am up!”  Of course I am referring to the saying we see on social Christian media!  But, I really felt that way.  One day I asked myself, “Why do I feel this way every morning?”  My marriage was good, my children were great kids, my life was a good life, nothing horrible was happening during the day.  Nevertheless, I always had this feeling of impending doom!

One day I thought, “Why haven’t I been taking authority over this??  satan in the name of Jesus, get out!!  The Word says, ‘No evil shall befall me nor any plague come nigh my dwelling and goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life!  He has given His angels charge over me and the blood covers me and my family for protection and favor all the days of our lives!”  When I said that, I got out of bed and it was as if a load was lifted from my shoulders!  Now you can think I was a basket case, call me any neurotic name you can think of and you would probably have been right!  But, glory to God it isn’t that way now!  If I let it, hear me, if I let it, I can still be a basket case!  But now that I am aware of the cause I can control it or fear and worry can control me if I LET IT!!

This is what confuses so many non-Christians.  I have heard them say, “Why would I serve a God that lets bad things happen to good people?”  Well, God doesn’t LET bad things happen!  WE let it.  Jesus said He gave US authority over ALL the power of the enemy and NOTHIING would by any means hurt or harm us!  As Christians, some of us have dropped the ball and just let the devil walk all over us, and people who don’t know God don’t know any better than to blame Him for it when some of it has been our own faults for not taking our God given authority and putting a stop to it!  No wonder they are confused!!  I better get off of this before I really get in trouble!

Let us look at the second thing!

2.  BELIEVE IN GOD!  What is the cure for stopping our hearts from being anxious and agitated?  To have faith in God.  We have to know what God is willing to do before we can beleive Him for it!  If I go to buy a car, I need to know what the salesman is willing to do, and I want it in writing, before I can trust him to make me the best deal possible!  That is the way with anything.  If you are purchasing a house, car, boat, or anything else you have to know what is in the contract and what the one issuing it is willing to do!  When you have it in writing and you own it, they are obligated to do what it says!

God says what He means and He means what He says!  He would never promise anything in the Word He isn’t willing to stand by and give you!  He has promised health, peace, joy, help, to give you the good life and that is what He will do!  Our part is to know what the Bible says and believe it!  If you don’t believe it, then you will be letting your heart be troubled and a vicious cycle starts!  Ever feel like you are on a merry-go-round and you can’t get off?  You may be!

Every single day of your life you are going to have the opportunity to worry!  It is inevitable!!  But you have a choice.  You can choose to believe God and thereby choose joy, or you can choose to worry.  It really is that simple!  I love a quote “proverbsgirl.wordpress.com” gave by Oswald Chambers and it really sums this whole thing up.  It says, “Worry is an indication that we think God cannot look after us.”  It doesn’t get any plainer than that!  It doesn’t get any truer either!

Believe God, stop allowing yourself to be upset, and choose joy!  Your day is blessed, precious reader!  I will see you soon!!  Simply,   Juliana

 

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Daily Bible Devotion…What Do We Say?

WHAT DO WE SAY2

 

 

DAILY BIBLE DEVOTION

I am up unnaturally early for me, but praise God I feel wonderful!  Gracie is beside me, my sweet little writing buddy, and the day is already unfolding into one blessing after the other!

Today, I want to talk to you a little more about the journey I have had in getting back on track to a peaceful mind and better health.  If you read yesterday’s post you saw where I had been experiencing unusual anxiety and some other unwanted symptoms.  I battled this for a couple of months and it was growing worse.  I prayed and God spoke some things for me to do and they helped tremendously!

Before God spoke to me about the supplements, He gave me some scriptures to meditate on one night as I was lying in bed.  I decided to get up and read them and the chapters they were found in.  The first words I kept hearing were “What do we say to all these things?  We are more than conquerors through Jesus, Who gives us a surpassing victory!”  Well, the Lord knew I needed victory over this thing!  That caught my attention and drove me out of bed and to my Bible!

When I first opened it I saw Matthew 28.  The first words I saw were in verse 10 and they were, “Be not afraid or alarmed”.  I just stared at them and thought about that for a moment.  What is the difference in afraid and alarmed?  Aren’t they the same thing?  In today’s vernacular they are, but in the Greek they are not!  Afraid means fear, but alarmed means panic, agitation, and alarm as in sudden fear!  That was what I had been experiencing for the past two months!  But God did not stop there.  He went on to say the following:

18 Jesus approached and, [a]breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.

19 Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them [b]into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

20 Teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you, and behold, I am with you [c]all the days ([d]perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion), to the [very] close and consummation of the age. [e]Amen (so let it be).

Three things caught my attention…1.  Jesus has ALL power and authority.  2.  We are to go forth and evangelize the entire world!  No country has been left out, please notice that!  3.  He is with us always and forever!

We are in Christ and Christ is in us.  Since Jesus has all power and authority, we have it as well because we abide IN HIM and He in us and that power has been transferred to us through the power of His name.  He is with us to back that power and work that power in and through us!  We can go into the world and preach the gospel without fear, and He fully expects us to!  If we can go into the world to preach without fear, we can certainly go to the grocery store without fear!

The next scripture He showed me was John 10:10

The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it [a]overflows).

Notice it says the DEVIL COMES to steal, kill and destroy!  God’s plan for us isn’t harm, fear, worry, and unrest!  He doesn’t stop there!  For every poison the devil tries to use against us there is an antidote!  This same verse goes on to say Jesus came that we may have and enjoy life!  It is one thing to be alive, but it is quite another to have joy in the living!  Jesus wants us to enjoy life in the face of any trouble satan tries to bring!  Notice I said TRIES to bring.  I have tried many things, but just because I tried it didn’t mean I coud do it.  My number one example of this is singing!  I cannot carry a tune in a bucket no matter how hard I try.  Every single time I open my mouth Edith Bunker bellows out of it!  People can try to do a lot of things to us, the devil can try, but when it comes to us as children of God, try will ALWAYS end in the result of FAIL!!  You cannot show me one time an enemy came against God’s people that he succeeded in destroying them.  When they called out to God,  GOD ALWAYS SAVED THEM FROM TROUBLE!!  As hard as the devil tries, if we will stay with God the devil cannot do permanent damage to us!

The next scripture God gave me was Luke 10:19

Behold! I have given you authority and power to trample upon serpents and scorpions, and [physical and mental strength and ability] over all the power that the enemy [possesses]; and nothing shall in any way harm you.

God gives MENTAL AND PHYSICAL ability over the enemy!  Because we have that God-given ability NOTHING can harm us!  Mental ability is strength and firmness of mind.  It isn’t a panicked, worrisome, or fearful mind!  This was huge to me.  It was everything I had not been experiencing for some time.  I was alright!  Everything was going to be alright!  In the meantime I had to hold onto my peace and keep what God had promised me in and on my mind.  This is a big promise, my friend!  Nothing means in the Greek NOTHING.  It can’t get any simpler than that.  When nothing can hurt us, we can boldly go forth and do what God has told us to do.  But, we can also go in public and not fear the opinions of people.  We can go forth knowing every evil plan, thought, every person who has disliked us for no good reason means absolutely nothing to God, therefore why are we stressing over it?  God is going to open doors for us no man can shut.  Let us concentrate on open doors, instead of small-minded people!  They aren’t going to matter in the long run anyway.  God gave room for them to repent and it isn’t your fault if they didn’t.  Love them, but love them from a distance and forget it!

The last scripture was the clincher for me!  It is Romans 8:31-38…

31 What then shall we say to [all] this? If God is for us, who [can be] against us? [Who can be our foe, if God is on our side?]

32 He who did not withhold or spare [even] His own Son but gave Him up for us all, will He not also with Him freely and graciously give us all [other] things?

33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect [when it is] God Who justifies [that is, Who puts us in right relation to Himself? Who shall come forward and accuse or impeach those whom God has chosen? Will God, Who acquits us?]

34 Who is there to condemn [us]? Will Christ Jesus (the Messiah), Who died, or rather Who was raised from the dead, Who is at the right hand of God actually pleading as He intercedes for us?

35 Who shall ever separate us from Christ’s love? Shall suffering and affliction and tribulation? Or calamity and distress? Or persecution or hunger or destitution or peril or sword?

36 Even as it is written, For Thy sake we are put to death all the day long; we are regarded and counted as sheep for the slaughter.

37 Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors [m]and gain a surpassing victory through Him Who loved us.

38 For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things [n]impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers,

39 Nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

What do we say to all of this?  What do we say when our ship seems wrecked, when the attack of people is “snake bite” to poison our joy and love, to famine and lean times, to imprisonment, to false accusations?  We say WE ARE MORE THAN CONQUERORS AND GAIN A SURPASSING VICTORY THROUGH JESUS WHO LOVES US!!  See, it matters what you say when the world seems to be imploding in on you.  Paul could have easily said, “All I want to do is love people.  I go around trying to help these churches, I worship and serve God with all of my heart and what do I get?  Nothing but trouble.  It follows me everywhere I go and is constantly dogging me!  Just for one week I would love to go and do what I want and just have a restful vacation without anything going wrong!!”  But, Paul didn’t say that did he?  He said, “I AM MORE THAN A CONQUEROR AND I HAVE A SURPASSING VICTORY!”  A surpassing victory is what you have when you are playing sports and you have a bazillion on the score board and your opponent has nothing!  It isn’t 29-30 and boy they barely won that one!  It is when you skunked your opponent and the win was an embarrassment to the other team!  It matters what you say when trouble pops up!  It can make your situation worse or better depending on how you handle it with your words and actions.  You can prolong it, or nip it in the bud!  Watch the words you say, they do make all the difference!  It can make it a close call, or it can make it a stomping in the ground of your opponent!  It is your call…careful what you call it!

I used to love to play spades!  When hubby was teaching me to play, the first thing he taught me was the Ace of spades ALWAYS trumps the other cards.  I know this may be an odd example but it is the one God gave me.  I don’t care what trick the devil plays (that is what you say in spades when the enemy seems to be holding all the winning cards) Jesus ALWAYS has the ace that trumps and wins it all!

Meditate on these thoughts, precious reader!  I know this, I am not the only one satan has tried to attack.  Anxiety in our nation today is high and it is high throughout the world.  I have never seen an administration in all of my life that needed prayer for wisdom and sense more than this one does.  I have never seen people just swallow whatever comes down the pike like they do today!  It is as though people cannot think straight!  You should be wondering what is going on when the enforcement of a law (Obamacare) is put off until after elections!!  But praise God, we as Christians will be taken care of!  Nobody has ever outsmarted God!

Blessings to you, precious reader!  Think on these scriptures and meditate on these thoughts!  May peace guard your hearts continually!  I will see you soon!  Simply,  Juliana

 

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Expecting the Good that God Wants to Give You

expecting the good

Sometimes  when you’ve had a long series of disappointing things happen, you can get into  the very bad habit of just expecting more of what you’ve already had. You’ve  been through a lot of trouble and you’re simply waiting for more to come. I used  to be like that, but I’ve discovered it’s not how God wants us to live.

I  was abused by my father throughout my whole childhood and I married the first  guy who came along when I was still a teenager, and it seems he was a bigger  mess than I was. After being abused and abandoned by him, our marriage ended.  By the time I met Dave, I was negative and hopeless about everything, just  trying to make it through each day.

Because I had been hurt so much in my life, I was really  negative and expected the worst all of the time. Even after I had a strong  relationship with God, I still struggled with this for a while. Then one  morning, I was standing in the bathroom and I remember noticing this pressure,  this evil presence around me. It wasn’t new; I realized that I’d always felt it.  It made me think, “What bad thing is going to happen next?”

The Fear of “What If…

I asked God what this feeling was. He spoke to my heart that  it is “evil forebodings.” Later I found Proverbs 15:15, which says, “All the  days of the desponding and afflicted are made evil [by anxious thoughts and  forebodings], but he who has a glad heart has a continual feast [regardless of  circumstances]” (AMP).

“  God wants you to believe something good is going to happen to you.”

Once  I read that verse, I realized what it meant. It was the fear of something bad  happening when nothing was going wrong. Then I looked back and saw how it  affected me at different times in the past. For example, the night Dave asked  me to marry him, he said he needed to talk to me about something. I actually  thought he was going to break up with me because I just always expected the  negative. That’s exactly what Satan wants you to do. He wants you to expect  something bad and to become fearful of the “what ifs.”

Fear  is the opposite of faith and it takes faith to accept anything good in our  lives. When I was expecting something bad to happen, my expectation was from  the devil. If we are not careful, this expectation will open the door to  Satan’s evil plans for our lives by waiting for bad things. But when we expect  good things, we open the door to God’s plans. See Lamentations 3:25.

The Truth About God

God  is good. Everything He does is good and wonderful. Everything God gives and  offers is greater than what the devil offers, so shouldn’t our expectations  come from God? God wants to do something outrageously wonderful in your life  every moment of every day. But you have to be ready and expect it to happen.

Isaiah  30:18 (AMP) says it perfectly: “Therefore  the Lord [earnestly] waits [expecting, looking, and longing] to be gracious to  you; and therefore He lifts Himself up, that He may have mercy on you and show  loving-kindness to you…. Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are all those  who [earnestly] wait for Him, who expect and look and long for Him….”

God  is looking and longing for someone who’s waiting for Him to be good to them.  God wants to be good to you, but you  have to be expecting Him to move in your life.

Today  is your day to start believing something good is going to happen to you! God is  working in your life right now, and when you get your breakthrough, it will be  the result of what God has been doing for a long time. Whether you see it or  feel it or not, keep praying and expecting because God is longing to be  gracious and good to you.

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