3 O you poor and silly and thoughtless and unreflecting and senseless Galatians! Who has fascinated or bewitched or cast a spell over you, unto whom—right before your very eyes—Jesus Christ (the Messiah) was openly and graphically set forth and portrayed as crucified?
1 Corinthians 15:33
New Living Translation
“Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
I have always heard it isn’t what your life is, it is the attitude you face it with. It is like seeing the glass either half full or half empty. The first part of my life I was a ‘see the glass half full’ kind of person. For a time in my adult life I became a ‘see the glass the half empty’. Thank God, He got me back to the positive, faith filled way of seeing things. Even now I can still slip back to the ‘seeing the glass half empty’, but thank God He is still there to bring me back around and that attitude is almost extinct in me.
Recently, I did have a relapse in my attitude because my life has been forced into a simplification that is beyond anything I have ever known before. At first, after our house sold and we were forced to live in our travel trailer, I looked at it as an adventure. But, when that adventure began to turn into not just a month or two, but MONTHS, the adventurous aspect of it began to wane.
I felt a despondency beginning to try to overtake me. I began to think of what it would be like if this turned into years! I lost the adventurous, this is fun, a perpetual camp out attitude and I began to feel panicked and desperate to find a house with a concrete slab instead of tires!
One day recently, as I lay flat on my back…I had thrown it out…the thought came to me, “When did this become hard? I was actually loving it at first!” I realized I had crossed over from faith to fear. I had crossed over from trust to ‘Another one of your doozies, Juliana!’ Oh, how the devil loves to play that broken record over and over in my mind.
God began to show me all I had done RIGHT! Wow!! That is a new concept on this thing!! I sold my home when God said to…obedience is a major step in the right direction! I sold when I didn’t know where we were going to end up…total and blind trust…another God pleasing thing! I had learned to live with less and with true simplicity. All the clutter was gone from my life and God wanted the same of my spiritual and emotional life, not just my physical.
Living a life of simplicity is wonderful!! You can live without things you never thought you could! I had no idea how much junk we had accumulated over the years. Books, books, and more books that I didn’t even remember I had, much less did I read them! Crochet yarn piled almost to the ceiling…great gift for a knitter friend of mine since I only crochet once a year! Clothes from the 80s…literally! I could go on, but this is a blog not a book!
As I began to decide to think of what to throw away, give away, and keep my questions to myself were, “Have I used it in the last year? Is it an heirloom? Is it necessary?” If my answer was yes to any of those, it stayed…very little stayed. Those three questions brought such great simplicity and joy to my life!
By the time hubby and I moved into the trailer, we were down to a spring/summer wardrobe ( the fall/winter is in storage) that consisted of 2 weeks worth of clothes and accessories. I have a section in my closet for the casual, semi-dressy, and Sunday clothes. One closet! That alone, amazed me and it relieved me!!
No more frantic searches on Sundays for my black travelers pants and that blouse I haven’t worn in a year, but I remembered it when I burped from my last bite of pizza…yeah, that had to be what jogged my memory! I had minimized and simplified and ‘oh what a relief it is’!
Suddenly, I realized God wanted the same from me in my mental and emotional life. Now, all people are important! We love ALL people! Jesus did, but notice Jesus only kept 12 close to Him. Why did He do that while He was on the earth? I think it was because the more you ‘entertain’ the less you can focus on what is important.
There are some people who juggle fifty different things in a week. They have friends who they hang out with that fingers and toes could not count, and that is fine! But, for me, relationships have to be categorized. Have I talked to this person in the last year? Why or why not? Is this person someone who will build me or tear me down spiritually? Is this person someone who I can trust or someone who would betray me? Is this person someone who enriches my life or brings sorrow and fatigue?
I am very careful about who I bring close. All Christians should be careful of who you bring close! Paul even warned the church to not even eat with people who practiced sin. It tells us in 1 Corinthians a man/woman of good character will be brought down if they make those who are not of good character close companions.
I heard about a young man who was a wonderful person! He had been someone who was respected by friends, family and his church community. This young man began to make friends with people who were more than a little rough around the edges, so to speak. It wasn’t long until this young man began to do little things the new friends did.
He began to drink, and then drink a little more and a little more often. It wasn’t long until the ‘old friends’ began to be pushed away and more of the rough friends began to come on the scene. This young man soon found himself overwhelmed in the new lifestyle he had developed. He ended up in jail one night after a drinking binge. His lawyer entered the room where he was and said, ‘Get rid of your ‘friends’, son. If you don’t you will find yourself here for a much longer time!’
I spoke with this young man, and he told me while he was in jail someone told him, ‘You lie down with dogs, you will get up with fleas.’ Now the friends didn’t make him do anything, but their ways definitely rubbed off on him. ‘You are who you hang with’, is a saying I always told my children, and I could always tell when they were ‘hanging’ with the wrong people.
Now the ‘glass half full’ to this story is, the more we ‘hang’ with God, the more like Him and His character we become. The wiser we are because we learn to think as He thinks. We love like Him, because that is what He is. We take on His dignity, because we have been with the “King” and realize we are a King’s child! Children always imitate the father. Make sure you are a good parent, your influence carries much farther than you know!
Ask yourself, “Is it time to minimize some things and some relationships in my life?” Let God show you the answer to be sure you answer correctly and do the right thing! Take off the weights of busyness and things. We often fail to hear from God the way the apostles and disciples did, not because it was just for Biblical times, but because our ‘times’ have become times of ‘too much to do and too little time to do it in’.
In minimizing, you will find you actually maximize what is truly important in life and you have had the time to think and pray about what that really is!
I was posting recipes. God had spoken to me to add them in, albeit temporarily. I have to say, they were popular and I am glad I was able to share some things my mom and grandmother shared with me, but the purpose of this blog is not to share recipes. I never intended it to be a recipe blog site.
Jesus said it best when He said it isn’t what goes into the stomach that is important but what comes out of the mouth. In other words, you have to eat, but more important than your physical body is the nurturing of your spirit! What comes out of your mouth shows the substance of your heart and it also shows what your mind thinks about. Your mouth shows you what you are made of and you will either speak life or death. There is power in your tongue, so there is power in your mouth!
An acquaintance and fellow writer told me one time, “If you want readers, don’t write devotions. People aren’t interested in devotions or Christian literature anymore.” I felt like someone had slapped me! Our lives should EVOLVE around Jesus. You will only GO as far as you GROW.
We need to know how to hear from God, how to get a grasp on God’s direction for our lives, how to have a spirit of wisdom and revelation at work within us. Solomon didn’t ask for an exotic food or decorating sense or how to look like a ‘celebrity’ when God told him to ask anything from Him and He would grant it. He asked for wisdom!
Wisdom should be the main thing we all are searching for, and if you are smart, you will search for it in Jesus Christ. Even demons know Jesus is God so don’t pretend you don’t. Deep down, you absolutely know it!! Many just do not want to admit it. Admit it while you can for the day will come when it will not be able to save you from hell and it will be too late…you will admit it one day anyway. Every tongue is going to confess Jesus Christ is Lord the Bible says! Do it now while you can still save your soul!!
You will find me bolder. I am not here to pacify you, nor am I here to sooth wrong thinking. I don’t mean to offend, but if the truth hurts then let it change you instead of fighting it. You will lose every time! The truth always stands…ALWAYS! You are fighting a losing battle and why would anyone want to continue to be wrong?
I have found I don’t have to back down from any thing God has called me to do. At the moment, I have sold my home and we are without a real address. I am not homeless. Thank God for a Christian couple who opened their home to us temporarily, but I had to let go of what I had to move into what God has and is preparing for me and my family. I will be writing on more of this adventure in faith in the near future.
I have gone from being ‘safe, steady as she goes, no changes’ to being a risk taker in God! By faith, my family will step into literal air this Friday. God will show us the direction we are to go as we listen and we will go where He says. I guess you could say I am flying, wide open! I hope you enjoy the journey with us.
“Be ye holy for I am holy” is a verse we don’t hear too much anymore. I hear a great deal about God‘s mercy and grace. I hear a lot about His love. I hear a lot about the great future He has planned for us, and all of these things are true! They are quite Biblical but, “Be ye holy for I am holy” is Biblical, too and applies for today as much as it ever has.
You cannot pick apart the Bible and choose what is for “today’s world”. It is ALL for today! God said anyone who added to or took away from the Bible was in danger of hell! Why? Because many times people file everything under “God is a good God and would not send a good person to hell” to “God is a God of grace and everything is lawful” to excuse or permit their own baseness and wills. Neither of these can be supported by the word. The second one is a partial scripture, but many fail to read the rest of it…”NOT ALL THINGS ARE BENEFICIAL”!
1 Peter 1:13-24
13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”[c]
17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. 20 He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you 21 who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit[d] in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, 23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,[e] 24 because
Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.
There is a code of conduct by which we are to pattern our lives after. We are especially to be aware and cautious if we are ministers. We are a “royal priesthood” and in that “priesthood” the Bible tells us there is a higher caliber of behavior we are to not only exhibit, but exhibit due to the condition of our renewed hearts! God isn’t looking for actors! God isn’t looking for people who know the “vernacular” of super Christendom, if you will!
Serving God in Spirit and in truth is getting truthful in the arena of your mind, will, and emotions just as the truth has fully flourished in our redeemed spirits, if we are truly born again. There is an old saying, “We aren’t playing church here, folks!” but, sadly many are today. When the very elect take the Bible when confronted with wrong and twist it with false “church history” and twisted theology, you have left honoring the truth and have made it YOUR OWN truth! It ceases to have power to save and change at that point because it is no longer the unadulterated word of God, but it is what YOU want it to say in order for it to fit what YOU want to do!
I have heard these very types of people say, “We are not under law! We are no longer under the Old Testament, but a better covenant.” This is true! But God never meant for us to throw the Old Testament and the examples of it out of our lives. I find it amusing those very people, when their lifestyle gets them into trouble, want to quote the Old Testament and what God did to Haman and what He will do to their enemies. They quote what David wrote in Psalm when he was faced with great trouble and people who were out to take his life and kingdom. They want to quote the story of Lot and how he was saved due to Abraham’s prayers, but don’t give it a second thought until trouble comes and these scriptures become “convenient” for them and what they want to see done to so-called “enemies”. Suddenly, the Old Testament becomes “viable”, again!
While we are over in the Old Testament let us remember a foolish king who took holy things from the temple and decided to drink wine from them and party with them! He decided to take what was holy and treated it as common, the way many do with what should be a Godly lifestyle and tremendous respect and gratitude for the gifts God has placed within us. The word tells us a hand came down and wrote on the wall MENE,[d] MENE, TEKEL,[e] UPHARSIN.[f]
When you have a chance, read all of Daniel 5, but for now know what these words mean and let us look at some very important verses that led to this! Daniel 5 tells us,
Belshazzar the king made a great feast for a thousand of his lords, and drank wine in the presence of the thousand. 2 While he tasted the wine, Belshazzar gave the command to bring the gold and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple which had been in Jerusalem, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them. 3 Then they brought the gold vessels that had been taken from the temple of the house of God which had been in Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them. 4 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze and iron, wood and stone.
5 In the same hour the fingers of a man’s hand appeared and wrote opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace; and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. 6 Then the king’s countenance changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his hips were loosened and his knees knocked against each other. 7 The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. The king spoke, saying to the wise men of Babylon, “Whoever reads this writing, and tells me its interpretation, shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold around his neck; and he shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.” 8 Now all the king’s wise men came, but they could not read the writing, or make known to the king its interpretation. 9 Then King Belshazzar was greatly troubled, his countenance was changed, and his lords were astonished.
Daniel at this point is called to interpret the writing and the meaning of it follows…
26 This is the interpretation of each word. MENE: God has numbered your kingdom, and finished it; 27 TEKEL: You have been weighed in the balances, and found wanting; 28 PERES: Your kingdom has been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.”[g] 29 Then Belshazzar gave the command, and they clothed Daniel with purple and put a chain of gold around his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.
Do you not believe if you abuse the office in which God has placed you, you will not be open to consequences? Do you believe if you treat the supernatural things of God as common in this natural world you will not suffer natural consequences? Belshazzar had a choice. He could have lived humbly, looking to God but instead he was prideful and went too far with his lifestyle, all the while reasoning in his blinded mind that this was okay and he was king and could not be touched! He ruled, what could happen?
Many have made the call of God, the gifts of God, and the responsibilities that come with these very things “common” to themselves saying, “God is merciful and forgives. I am absolved of all guilt. He would rather bless me than punish me, hence grace” but the truth is God has done these things in your spirit, but your soul still lives in this natural world where satan seeks to kill, steal and destroy and he would love to ruin your life and your witness. You will go to heaven, but you will go faster if you don’t obey the supernatural laws of God while you are in a natural world. These laws were put in place to protect you, but you can ignore them just as you can a traffic light and die early due to physical lawlessness, “wrecking” your life!
To live holy is a command! Don’t think you are untouchable because God is full of grace and mercy. Paul wrote we were not to try that grace! Is what you are doing worth your relationship and reward with God? There is a separation coming in these last days. God will not have people whose souls hang in the balance influenced in an ungodly manner by the very ones who have tasted the sweet savor of salvation, but live sloppy lives!
There is an exposing coming of all secret things. It will be as the word tells us where the wicked will become more wicked and the righteous will flourish. Live as God has clothed you to be! Don’t take your robe of righteousness and cover it with the sights and smells of a common cloak by living as all others in a common world and expect the supernatural blessings of God to follow you.
Perry Stone spoke recently of a minister he knew. The man had a powerful ministry! He would pray and cancers would fall to the floor, roots of them still attached! People were set free, salvations taking place as he preached. Miracles, signs and wonders followed this minister’s ministry!
This minister had trouble sleeping and was advised by some people to drink some wine to help him sleep. He began to drink a little wine. When he did, the anointing left his ministry, he became an alcoholic and died in poverty and as a hermit. A little leaven spoils the whole loaf. Learn from other’s examples and don’t be an example of what CAN happen, but what SHOULD AND WILL happen when we live for God, holding His word as our standard in ALL of our conduct! We will be held accountable for what we did on this earth one day! Don’t let the temporary things of this world cost you an eternity of great reward!
The Message (MSG)
15-19 That’s why, when I heard of the solid trust you have in the Master Jesus and your outpouring of love to all the followers of Jesus, I couldn’t stop thanking God for you—every time I prayed, I’d think of you and give thanks. But I do more than thank. I ask—ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory—to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is he is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life he has for his followers, oh, the utter extravagance of his work in us who trust him—endless energy, boundless strength!
4 But when the goodness and loving-kindness of God our Savior to man [as man] appeared,
5 He saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but because of His own pity and mercy, by [the] cleansing [bath] of the new birth (regeneration) and renewing of the Holy Spirit,
6 Which He poured out [so] richly upon us through Jesus Christ our Saviour. Titus 3:4-6