In the beginning [before all time] was the Word (Christ), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God Himself. He was present originally with God. And the Word (Christ) became flesh (human, incarnate) and tabernacled (fixed His tent of flesh, lived awhile) among us; and we [actually] saw His glory (His honor, His majesty), such glory as an only begotten son receives from his father, full of grace (favor, loving-kindness) and truth. John 1:1-2, 14 AMP
Amplified Bible (AMP)
2 Consider it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations.
3 Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience.
4 But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing.
Have you ever felt as though someone is enjoying YOUR blessing as you look on “empty-handed”? Oh, we don’t dare admit that even for a second we wonder if God has been unfair to us!! We don’t admit it, because even though it does look like someone else is basking in what we have fasted, prayed, and believed for, that which seems so elusive to us came so easily to them instead. Deep down we know God is fair! So what has happened here?
I have seen beautiful young ladies, full of the Holy Spirit who lead godly lives and are true to God through and through pray for a mate and wait for years for that mate to come. Then I see Christian men who seem to be attracted to girls that will never bring anything but misery. They marry them (careful guys, everything that glistens is NOT gold!), and sure enough, the godly girls sit on the sidelines at the reception, happy for their friend but wondering why their time never seems to arrive.
I have wondered what is going on in my life with my home. I have never been one who really dreams of a particular type of house. I would see others telling me of what they wanted, how they would arrange it, all the new architectural designs, the best kitchens, huge walk in closets that are the size of my family room and I am and will always be happy for them, but that was never my priority.
One day as I looked at my starter home I had been in for over 25 years, I began to dream. Oh, it had hit me, too! I wanted a closet my husband and I could fit into at the same time. I wanted a kitchen he didn’t have to shut the refrigerator door for me to put something in the dishwasher and vice versa! I began to pray, thanking God for the home I have, but letting Him know my desires, too.
We put the house on the market and in a month it “sold” and in a 2 week period, the “sale” fell through. That wasn’t too bad…I cried the night I found out and the morning after for about 10 minutes, but I have been dry-eyed since. What got me was the fact ladies I taught when they were in the fourth grade are living in MY dream home!! Don’t get me wrong! I am so happy for them and they deserve it, but my question to God was, why don’t I have mine, yet? God is always so patient with me. He gently spoke to me and said, “Juliana, that is not the only beautiful home I have to give. My reserves are full and there is plenty for you!”
We can so easily listen to satan when he whispers, “God likes them better! You aren’t ever going to have certain things, you might as well forget it…you have never been anyone’s “favorite”, even now!” Oh, and he doesn’t fail to bring up things that have happened to you in life to “prove his point”! But the fact of the matter is this…we are ALL God’s favorite! Nobody is more special or loved more than another. Just because your blessing didn’t come and someone else’s did doesn’t mean yours isn’t coming!! Satan is seeing if you will continue to stand, or throw it all out the window. God isn’t “seeing” what you will do. He knows! He wants you to know what you will choose!
Tests are not about what God needs to know about you. God already knows what you are going to do because He knows you better than you know yourself. Tests are to show YOU what YOU are made of, or what you need to develop in. In my case, I needed to develop perseverance and let patience have its perfect work. Was I going to get upset with God and tell Him how I have stood in faith, I am not getting any younger, and just why can others have things in their 20s I have waited 30 years for? Or, was I going to rejoice, not covet, and continue to believe my blessing was on its way and will be better than what I could ask for because I HAD sought God, loved Him, know Him personally, and because of that I know His character and I know He isn’t cruel, nor will he short change me.
Most of the time where problems come in is when we seek the gifts instead of the giver. If you don’t know God as your Father, you will liken him to an earthly authority figure that was in your life. Maybe your father wasn’t a kind man. Maybe your father abandoned you and your mom was so busy trying to provide for the family you were inadvertently pushed to the side. There could be a thousand scenarios and I cannot possibly list them all. But, whatever the case God is not a man that He should lie, as the Word tells us. He has spoken it and He WILL do it! God doesn’t have human frailties like people do. His character is unmarred and you can fully and blindly trust Him!
No matter how much we have heard this before, sometimes we need to rehearse it over and over in our minds until it isn’t just head knowledge, but true revelation…something we know that we know that we know, as my Paw-Paw used to always say. Gloria Copeland always says, “In consistency lays power”. It has to eventually come if you are believing according to God’s word. If you are believing according to His word then you are believing according to His will and if you are believing according to His will you will have what you have asked for IF YOU DOUBT NOT IN YOUR HEART! (1 John 5:14-15)
Dare to believe, dear reader!! Be assured your answer will come even though you don’t you see it now. This is true faith and that is the catalyst to answered prayer!
Blessings to you!! I will see you soon!
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
7 Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God, because the Lord will not leave anyone unpunished who misuses His name.
It was November and my son was flying into Houston from Tulsa, Oklahoma for Thanksgiving. I had not seen him since September and I was ecstatic he was home. He had been in Bible College for about four months.
As he sat in the backseat he began to tell us all about the school and all the powerful things he was learning. He loved it and was just gushing with the anointing. One of the things he said was, he found himself becoming more aware of things he had not really thought about before. He had been in the presence of the Lord in prayer in study almost continually and it was showing! He told us, “I cannot stand for people to say, ‘OH MY GOD’ or for them to even say the letters ‘OMG’. I hate that phrase! I have heard some people at school saying it and we are here to be ministers! If ministers cannot even keep the commandment to not take the Lord’s name in vain, how will they deal with and be an example in deeper things?”
I have to agree with my son, but more importantly the Bible! We are to be examples and living epistles of the Bible. We don’t just read it, we DO it! I have seen and heard this “saying” EVERYWHERE! It is said by our youth as a habit. I don’t think they even realize they are saying it and that they are sinning when they do! It is all over Hollywood, as though it was nothing but a byline of some sort. You hear it in movies, interviews, casual conversation, and sadly, out of our own children’s mouths!
God…the name above all names, our Father, the one Who gave the most precious thing He had in all of heaven to be tortured and murdered so that He could have relationship with us! God is not part of a slang phrase, and His name should be treated with the respect it so deserves! When He tells us THOU SHALL NOT, that doesn’t mean if you feel like it you can, if the rest of the world is doing it and it is popular, then you are allowed. THOU SHALL NOT means YOU DON’T!
The only time we should say God’s name is in prayer and worship! As Christians the Bible says we ‘are a peculiar people’. It doesn’t mean we are weird, but to the world we are different because we should be different than the rest of the world! The world doesn’t think about God’s name being holy. The world has not been redeemed from the curse of sin. They give “knee jerk” reactions and think it is justified, therefore it is okay. Whatever they feel they do, without much thought. We are redeemed by the Word, and the blood of Jesus. Our thoughts, actions, and living should correspond with the Bible, which tells us we are the salt and light of the world for Jesus.
The Bible tells us to watch our words. Whether bitter or sweet, right or wrong, we will eat the fruit of our lips. It tells us we will give an account of EVERY idle word. Idle in the Greek means, ‘of no purpose or use’. Have you ever heard the phrase ‘Loose lips, sink ships’? Are you poking holes in your testimony, and even your future so that you are sinking instead of living a higher life God has called you to? What harvest do you want to see in the years to come? Blessing or failure? Of course, we all pick the blessing, but the blessing comes with certain actions on our part. One of those actions is OBEDIENCE TO GOD’S WORD! If we can’t be faithful to God in such a small thing, how can He ever trust us with bigger things.
It is the ‘little foxes that eat the vine’. The Vine is Jesus and we are the branches. If we are not connected to Jesus as we should be, we wither and fail to thrive. To become disconnected through sin is to not be able to flow in the anointing and wisdom of God as we should. It opens a door to the enemy to come in and wreak havoc in our lives. We cannot blame God for this, when WE are the ones that allowed it by being disobedient and reckless with things we should have obeyed and taken seriously!
If this is a phrase you have gotten into the habit of saying, think about what you are doing and how disrespectful it really is. Ask God to forgive you and watch and be mindful of your words. He loved us enough to give ALL to us, let us love Him enough to respect His name and remember His name is holy!
Blessings to you, dear reader! I will see you soon! Juliana