Devotional

Wisdom First

“Therefore, wisdom and knowledge will be given you.  And I will also give you wealth, possessions and honor; such as no king who was before you ever had and none after you will have.” – (2 Chronicles 1:12).

Solomon was very young, about 20 years old when he became king, but there’s something that David and Bathsheba have put into Solomon to prepare him for this:  wisdom.

How do we know they put wisdom in him?  Because Solomon wrote Proverbs, and in the first to chapters, he constantly writes, ‘” My mother and my father taught me the importance of wisdom.” Why?  Because he was going to be the next king, and in order to rule well, he’s going to need the wisdom of God.

After taking over the kingship, Solomon sees God appear to him in the night and says, “Solomon, what shall I give you?” and Solomon says, “Wisdom.” What else would he say?  He’s been taught that all his life.  I think if you had awakened him in the night when he was a child and asked him what he wanted he wouldn’t have said water, he would have said wisdom.  He wanted wisdom and understanding of how to govern God’s people because that was how he’d been raised.

We tend to go after riches and honor and longevity.  But in Matthew 6:33 Jesus says: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” That’s what Solomon did; he went after Godly wisdom, then riches and honor followed.

Lord, I declare that when I seek Godly wisdom first, You will give me a long life to enjoy all the riches and honor You will bring to me.  Amen!

2022-07-04T07:09:54-06:00October 3rd, 2022|

Godly Discipline

Making Forgiveness Part of Your Daily LifeFoolishness if bound up in the heart of a child; The rod of correction will drive it far from him.  – (Proverbs 22:15 NKJV)

The Bible says, “Eli sons were scoundrels; they had no regard for the Lord” (1 Samuel 2:12).  Eli was a priest and he knew the voice of God, but he didn’t always obey it.  Even when he saw his sons doing evil in the eyes of God, he didn’t discipline them and it led to the downfall of the entire family.  Eli lost his priesthood as well as his sons because he esteemed his sons more than he esteemed God.  Friend, when we esteem our children more than God, it ends up giving them a bucket of trouble!

Our tendency as parents can be to want to shelter our children from all of life’s hurts, including the pain of discipline.  But we have to pray and trust God that He will be with them wherever they go.  God expects us to do our part—to “train up a child in the way he should go” (Proverbs 22:6 KJV)—which includes disciplining them to know right from wrong.

As a young child, Samuel was committed to be a priest in the household of Eli—which everyone knew was an ungodly household.  But Hannah’s commitment kept him under the supernatural guidance of God during those year.

We can’t always protect our children from the ugliness they will encounter in the world, but we can entrust God with our children.

Dear Heavenly Father, I entrust my children to You.  When I need guidance on raising Godly children, I will look to Your Word, Your wisdom, and the way Your Own Son Jesus was raised.  In His Name, Amen.

2022-05-29T09:54:36-06:00September 26th, 2022|

The Seven Feasts of Jesus

Get rid of the old yeast, so that you may be a new unleavened batch—as you really are.  For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.  I Corinthians 5:7 NIV

After delivering the Israelites out of Egypt, God instructed them to celebrate seven feasts.  Did you know that these seven feasts actually show us who Jesus is in us?

Passover:  Christ is our Passover Lamb.  Unleavened Bread:  Leaven is a symbol of corruption.  Jesus was without spot and without sin; He had no leaven.  First fruits:  Jesus was the first fruit—He was the first to arise from the dead.  Pentecost:  This feast was marked by the offering of raised bread such as we eat daily.  We are reminded of Jesus coming to be among us, providing us with daily bread from Heaven for our spiritual sustenance.  Trumpets:  This is symbolic of the trumpet that will be blown when Jesus returns.  Day of Atonement:  Jesus is our atonement.  Tabernacles:  During this feast, the people dwelt in tabernacles or booths to celebrate the fact that God had brought them through the wilderness into their own land.  It was a joyous time.  This celebration allows us to look ahead to Jesus’ return.

So, in the Old Testament, they celebrated seven feast days.  Seven is always the number of completions, showing us the complete picture of what Jesus has for us.  Now, when they celebrated these feasts, they actually acted out what Jesus would do in the New Testament—even though they didn’t know Jesus by name!  They look ahead to a Messiah and had a revelation about that, but they didn’t know the fulfillment of that.

Don’t you just love to read both the Old and New Testament and see how they tie together?

Jesus, it is so wonderful to experience the revelations God has for us about You in the Old Testament!  Be real to me.  Intercede for me.  Pray for me.  Live in me.  I want to know Your presence in the most wonderful way!

2022-05-29T08:01:53-06:00September 19th, 2022|

The Call of God That Brings Profound Change

Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water.  And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments.  Exodus 34:28 (NIV)

Some of the most spectacular examples of fasting in the Bible are the 40-day fasts of the great lawgiver Moses, the prophet Elijah, and Jesus.

Things were not the same in these leaders’ lives after their times of fasting, nor were things the same in the lives of the people who were under their leadership.  For the Israelites, the fast of Moses meant the giving of the Law to them.  They lived under a new order of feasts, rituals, sacrifice, and patterns of worship.  And the fast of Elijah resulted in their having a new wave of righteousness in their land—including powerful miracles at the hand of Elisha, the successor of Elijah.

When Jesus fasted, he stripped the devil of all claims he had made. Jesus laid claim to the authority to act upon God’s Word in ways that brought healing and deliverance to people, and because He did, fully sealing that authority on the cross, Jesus was able to pass on to us the authority to act upon God’s Word in ways that bring healing and deliverance to those in need.

What purpose did God have for those He called to prolonged periods of fasting?  I believe it was a call to confront evil—both evil circumstances that are outside a person, as well as the evil influences of fear and discouragement that form inside a person.

The call of God to a prolonged fast is not for everybody.  It is for those whom God chooses and whom God calls for very specific purposes.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the legacy of these leaders whose faithfulness exacted profound change that would be felt throughout generations.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

2022-05-24T06:55:00-06:00September 12th, 2022|

Do the Natural, See the Supernatural

Then he went out to the source of the water, and cast in the salt there, and said, ‘” Thus says the Lord: ‘I have healed this water; from it there shall be no more death or barrenness.’” 2 Kings 2:21

Immediately after Elisha becomes the prophet-in-charge, the people come to him complaining about the terrible tasting water.  Elisha takes their plea to God, and then relates God’s instructions to the people: “Bring me a new bowl and put salt in it” (see v. 20).  The people didn’t say “that’s crazy,” they just obeyed.

God’s instructions seemed kind of silly, but Elisha was believing for a miracle and he was willing to do his part in the natural to produce the supernatural.  Sometimes I think we just sit around asking for a miracle and we don’t get it because we aren’t willing to do our part in the natural.  But when we listen to what God says and do it, we will see the supernatural in our lives!

So, Elisha throws the salt into the bad water.  But he takes it one step further and speaks to it!  He says, “This is what the Lord says…” (v.21).  So, he did the act and he spoke the Word.  And the water has been pure ever since.

How do I know?  Because I’ve been to Jericho!  And when I was there I said, “I want to go to Elisha’s Springs!” So, we went and I drank the water.  And I’m telling you, that water is so sweet!  After more than 2,500 years, the miracle is still working!

I believe that when we look to God, He will tell us an act to do.  And that act of faith will release the power of God to activate the miracle that needs to happen.  But whatever act God calls you to do, remember to speak your faith with it.  Act and speak the Word of God says!

Jesus, I declare that You have the power to purify whatever is cursed in my life.  Show me an act of faith so that I can do my part to activate the supernatural in my life.

2022-05-23T09:31:17-06:00September 5th, 2022|

Prepared for Kingship

Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord…” – (I Samuel 20:42)

As part of the inner circle of the king’s court, David was yoked to King Saul.  As Saul’s son, Jonathan was yoked to his father as well.  But David and Jonathan had a special friendship.  When it became obvious that Saul was jealous of the favor David had with the Lord, the two friends made a covenant with each other—to do the will of God in each other’s lives, regardless of what King Saul might say or do.

It was feast time, and normally David sat down and ate these feast meals with Saul and Jonathan.  But for two days, David’s place was empty.  Saul asked his son about David’s absence, and when Jonathan told him that David had requested permission to be with his family in Bethlehem, Saul recognized that Jonathan had put himself in an alliance with David.  Saul was so angry he threw a javelin at Jonathan—he tried to kill his own son and desired heir!

The yoke that tied David into an alliance with Saul was broken that day.  In significant ways, the yoke that tied Jonathan to the throne of Israel and to his father was also definitively broken that day.

Was David still under God’s anointing to be king of Israel one day?  Absolutely.  Was David allowed to prepare to become king in the logical place of preparation, the king’s court?  No.  Was David set free from the yoke of being part of King Saul’s close inner circle?  Yes.

Was this difficult?  Very.  It meant that David would spend the next years of his life on the run.  It meant He would face challenges and situations he had never dreamed of facing.  But did this yoke need to be broken so that David could grow in his trust of the Lord and in his understanding about how to lead men into peace and not just into battle?  Absolutely!

Jesus, I declare that I trust wherever You have placed me is where You want me to be!

2022-05-23T07:48:24-06:00August 29th, 2022|

According to His Loving Kindness

Have mercy upon me, O God, According to Your lovingkindness; According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, Blot out my transgressions. – (Psalms 51:1 NKJV)

David—chosen by God, a man after God’s own heart—failed.  No question about it.  You know what he did?  He committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband Uriah killed (see 2 Samuel 11).  David’s story proves that God doesn’t use perfect people.  But because of His mercy and lovingkindness, He forgives us, cleanses us, and uses us to bring Him glory.

Because David’s heart was right, he knew he had to repent.  So, he writes Psalm 51, pleading with God to have mercy on him, to forgive him, to not leave him in his sin:

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.  Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.  Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. (vv. 10-12 NKJV).

Psalm 51 is so wonderful because we see how God’s forgiveness is in the anointed one.  And that anointed one is Christ in you, the hope of glory!

When I read about David and some of these things that go on, it gives me hope for myself.  Granted, I’m not committing adultery and I’m not killing anyone, but sometimes I think or say things I shouldn’t.  I don’t do it all right all the time, and neither do you.  But remember, when we repent and confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive and to cleanse us of all unrighteousness.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your loving-kindness.  Thank You for Your anointing in Christ Jesus that blots out all iniquities.  Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me!

2022-05-22T15:33:15-06:00August 22nd, 2022|

But Does God Want It?

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him.  The Lord does not look at the things people look at.  People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” – (I Samuel 16:7)

The Israelites begged Samuel to appoint a king over them, just like the other nations had.  Samuel is grieved and prays about it, but God says, “Give them what they want.  It’s not you they are rejecting, it’s Me.” This king won’t be appointed like the other kings, however.  The Israelite king will be appointed by God.

God chooses Saul, and Samuel anoints him to be the first king of Israel.  And for a while it looks like a very good choice!  But then Saul becomes impatient and begins to make up his own rules.  I think waiting can be very dangerous or very beneficial to our faith!  It reveals whether or not we have developed the fruit of the spirit of patience, which is essential if we want to follow God.

Saul continued to disobey and Samuel was grieved.  He cried and cried over this because he so wanted Saul to work out as king.  But God told Samuel to stop crying.  He said He had another man, but this man is a man after His heart.  And we know God meant David, who would eventually succeed Saul as king.

These are two instances in which Samuel thought he knew what was best, but it ended up not being what God wanted.  Folks, do you ever think, “I really want this!” and then wonder, “but does God want it?”  Check your motives when you pray.  Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal your motives to you.  Work with God in what He wants, not what you want.  And trust Him to give you, His best.

Dear Heavenly Father, when I read Your Word and see how You prepare things well in advance, I know that I can trust that Your ways are higher and better and that You will work all things together for my good.  In Jesus’ Name

2022-05-17T06:39:19-06:00August 15th, 2022|

The Anointing Makes the Difference

Then Samuel took a flask of oil and poured it on his head, and kissed him and said: “Is it not because the Lord has anointed you commander over His inheritance?” – (I Samuel 10:1 NKJV)

I remember a missionary from Singapore who had four children.  One of her sons became addicted to drugs and alcohol.  She and her husband prayed for him for years and years.  Finally, she got him to come to one of our revivals.  I remember that he was way at the back of the meeting when the Spirit of God hit him.  And he got out in the aisle and literally did backflips all the way up to the front.  I tell you, I will never forget that!  Today, he is a missionary in Tanzania.  God had an anointing on his life that even the drugs and alcohol couldn’t cover; and the anointing makes the difference.

The anointing in your life has a purpose.  God has a purpose for you being a Christian.  You’re not just here to be a decoration.  You’re here to be a declaration!

Write down the places where God has anointed you—the places that yield success when you put your hands to them.  Maybe He’s anointed you to sing.  Maybe He’s anointed you to exhort backsliders.  Maybe He’s anointed you to reach the lost.  Maybe He’s anointed you to use your hands to heal the sick.  Write down those things where you see anointing.  Don’t write down your failures!  Write down where God has anointed you.

Put your hand on your heart and say, “I cannot forget the anointing on my life makes the difference!”

2022-05-16T11:45:05-06:00August 8th, 2022|

Learn to Hear God’s Voice

The Lord came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel!  Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak for your servant is listening.” – (1 Samuel 3:10).

The first time God spoke to him, Samuel was young and he didn’t yet know the voice of the Lord.  So, when he hears a voice one night that says, “Samuel, Samuel,” he thinks it must be the priest Eli calling him.  He runs to Eli and says, “Did you call me?” Eli said he didn’t.  So, Samuel goes back to his resting place beside the ark of the covenant in the house of the Lord, and the voice speaks again, “Samuel, Samuel.” Are you getting this?  God is calling Samuel by name!  But Samuel still thinks it is Eli, so he goes to him and says, “Did you call me?” And this time, it dawns on Eli that God must be speaking to the boy.

The key to learning the voice of God is an understanding that God wants to talk to us, to lead and guide and direct us.  It’s a challenge to be sensitive to the voice of God, but we can learn to hear it.  I admit and I don’t always recognize that “still small voice” within (see 1 Kings 19:12 KJV) as God’s voice, but I so love to hear it!

So, Eli says, “When you hear it again say, “Speak, Lord, for Your servant hears.” Samuel goes back, lies down in the presence of God, and suddenly the voice comes again: “Samuel, Samuel.” And Samuel responds as God desires when he says, “Speak, for Your servant hears” (1 Samuel 3:10 NKJV).  In order to learn the voice of God, we must be willing to hear!

Dear Heavenly Father, I know that You want to talk to me because You sent Your Son Jesus so that we could talk to You in the flesh, and You sent Your Holy Spirit to be the still, small voice that speaks to us within.  Help me have ears to hear.

2022-05-16T08:38:19-06:00August 1st, 2022|

A Miracle Waiting to Happen

And the Lord was gracious to Hannah; she gave birth to three sons and two daughters.  Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the Lord.  (I Samuel 2:21)

Over and over, we see stories of barren women in the Bible.  One of those women was Hannah.  Hannah longs to have a child, but she can’t have any.  And to make matters worse, her husband’s other wife, Peninnah was constantly provoking her.  Isn’t that just like humanity?

Peninnah treated Hannah poorly because she knew their husband loved Hannah more, even though she was the one blessed with children!  We can just imagine the ugly words she said to Hannah.  The Bible says it was so bad that Hannah “wept and would not eat” (see I Samuel 1:7).

On one such occasion, Hannah prayed to God to remember her in her misery.  Through tears, she vowed to dedicate her son to the Lord if only He would open her womb.  She was moving her mouth, but praying in her heart when Eli the priest saw her and accused her of being drunk.

In the midst of crisis, we may be falsely accused of things, but if we can keep our faith in God through that fire, we will come away even stronger.  God can use that crisis to bring us a miracle!  He did it for Hannah, and He will do it for us.

Hannah assures Eli she is not drunk, merely distraught over being childless.  So, Eli sends her home with a blessing and soon she becomes pregnant with Samuel, which means “I asked the Lord for him” (see v. 20).

If I had waited for a long time to have a baby of my own in my arms, I might have been tempted to regret my promise to give God my son.  But Hannah follows through with per promise and the Lord blesses her with five more children.  When we give to God, He blesses us back in multiple ways!

Jesus, I declare that what I give to You, You return to me in multiples.  Help me to stay strong in crisis so that I can see the miracles waiting for me on the other side!

2022-03-28T11:46:16-06:00July 25th, 2022|

Expected, Exceptional, Extraordinary

But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you.  Where you go, I will go, and where you stay I will stay.  Your people will be my people and your God my God.” (Ruth 1:16 NIV)

After moving to Moab to avoid the famine in Bethlehem, Naomi lost her husband and both sons and was left with two Moabites daughters-in-law.  Sometime later, Naomi heard that the famine in Bethlehem was over and decided to return home.  She told Orpah and Ruth, her daughters-in-law, that they should stay in Moab with their mothers because she had no sons for them to marry in Bethlehem.  Orpah agreed to stay, but nothing could make Ruth leave Naomi’s side.  Ruth said she would even give up her gods for Naomi’s God.

We can do what is expected, like Orpah, or we can do the exceptional, like Ruth.  The expected is our natural way of thinking, but the exceptional is to walk in faith.  When we do the expected, we don’t get much as a result.  But when we do the exceptional, God has the extraordinary waiting for us!

What extraordinary things did God have waiting for Ruth’s exceptional act?  First of all, imagine God naming a book of the Bible after a woman!  That’s extraordinary!  There is only one other woman—Esther—whose name is a book.

What else did God do?  Well, He made Naomi a grandmother, which she’d all but given up on when her husband and only two sons had died.  And He gave Ruth a husband, Boaz, and a little boy, Obed; all three of whose names are included in the genealogy of Jesus (see Matthew 1:5).

God will do the extraordinary in our lives when we take a step beyond the expected and do the exceptional!

Jesus, I declare that I want to be a faith-filled person who does the exceptional so that God can come upon the scene and say, “Now I give you the extraordinary!”

2022-03-28T08:23:31-06:00July 18th, 2022|

The Strength of the Lord in Us

I will go in the strength of the Lord God… (Psalm 71:16a NKJV)

Have you ever experienced the anointing of the Lord as a source of physical strength?  I have!  I have experienced tremendous anointing when I confess the Lord’s strength.

Many times, I have felt weak before speaking at a crusade or convention, especially those times that I’ve traveled long distances, to places like Ethiopia and Sudan, when jet lag sets in.  I’ve had times when I’ve thought, “I’m so tired!  I don’t have the strength of a sleeping cat!” But when I say those things, God has always said back, “Well, I’m not tired!” God tells us that when we are weak, we should confess His strength.  We can go in the strength of the Lord.

Samson received the same anointing of strength that we experience (see Judges 13-16).  God’s anointing would break in upon Samson, and he would experience strength beyond that of any man!  He could then perform supernatural feats of might.  The Bible shows us many instances of supernatural strength and endurance being given to a mortal man when he was at work for God’s Kingdom.  Even Jesus had a man’s body, but God’s supernatural strength.  Let’s claim our physical heritage in Jesus!

When we are weak, let’s say, “I am strong.” It works; we will receive our supply of supernatural strength…I know it!

Dear Heavenly Father, today we grasp the physical strength that You have for our day.  As our day is mighty in You, so is our strength.  In Jesus Name, Amen.

2022-03-28T07:12:31-06:00July 11th, 2022|

Blessed is the Nation

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord”

Psalm 33:12a

Did you know that the United States began its life as a Christian nation?  Our forefathers fled to this country so that they could worship God in the manner they wished.  Our constitution, our Declaration of Independence, and our Bill of Rights all mention God.  We were birthed as a nation of God, and we are blessed for it.

God has used America to bless the world.  Our confidence is in God—it is even printed on our money!  There are certainly tremendous needs in our nation today, but there are also tremendous Christians who are taking God’s Word to intercede for this country.  We are the salt that preserves this nation—let’s not lose our saltiness.  We are the light that overcomes the darkness of this nation—let’s not hide our lights under a bushel.

Let’s stand boldly in God, speak against evil, pray, and believe God for the miraculous outpouring of His Spirit upon all flesh in the United States.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today that our nation is blessed because of the Christians who are praying and believing You.  Thank You for doing great and mighty things in our midst and raising up laborers and intercessors.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2022-03-27T10:11:00-06:00July 4th, 2022|

When Things are Going Badly

In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Judges 17:6 KJV

We are told in Judges 19-20 the tragic story of a priest who gave a group of Benjamites access to his concubine in exchange for a room for the night.  The following morning, the priest found his concubine dead.  He returned home, cut her into 12 pieces, and sent one section of her body to each tribe of Israel, along with this message: “This is what the Benjamites have done to my concubine!” What a gruesome story!

The other tribes sent a message to the Benjamites, saying, “Give us the men who did this so we can punish them.” But the Benjamites refused.  The 11 tribes joined together to take on the Benjamites, but it was the Benjamites who ended up winning the first two battles, killing 40,000 men!

Why did God let the Benjamites win?  The Bible does not give us a direct answer to that question, but the more I have studied this passage, the more I have concluded the reason may have been that the other 11 tribes of Israel had moved so far away from God that the powers of darkness had overwhelmed the nation.  They were acting according to their own understanding of what was right.  They had no reliance upon God and they failed to seek God diligently before they went into this battle against one of their own.  It was only when the “children of Israel arose, and went up to the house of God, and asked counsel of God” that the tide of war began to turn (see Judges 20:18 KJV).

When things are definitely not going our way, we need to find out why.  But we need to seek God’s opinion, not human understanding.

Jesus, when things are going badly, I will look to Your Holy Spirit for wisdom and guidance!

2022-02-15T08:16:15-07:00June 27th, 2022|

God Remembers Your Faith

Then Samson prayed to the Lord, “Sovereign Lord, remember me.  Please, God, strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes.” Judges 16:28

Are you familiar with the story of Samson and Delilah?  Samson had an anointing of physical strength to overcome the Philistines, but Samson had a weakness for Philistine women.  He got involved with a woman name Delilah, who seduced him to find out the secret of his strength—it was in his consecration to the Lord, which came with a vow to never cut his hair.  While Samson was sleeping one night, Delilah had his head shaved, and when she did “his strength left him” (see Judges 16:19). She sold him to the Philistines who gouged out his eyes and put him in prison to work.

After some time, the Philistines brought Samson out to the temple on the day they were to worship their god, Dagon.  They were praising their god for delivering Samson into their hands, but they didn’t know that Samson had repented.  He prayed and God’s anointing of physical strength came upon him.  Samson pushed on the support pillars until the whole temple came down on top of him, and the Bible says he killed many more Philistines in his death than in his whole life.

When we look at this it is easy to think, “Oh Samson, how sad that you had to learn the hard way!” But in Hebrew 11, we see that Samson is in the hall of fame of faith.  And not only that, but only Samson’s acts of faith were recorded, not his moments of failure.  When I first saw this, I said to the Lord, “Why don’t You list anyone’s failures in Hebrews 11?  None of these people were perfect!” And God said, “Because I remember your faith and I forget what you repented.”  Isn’t that good news?

Dear Heavenly Father, I declare that through my repentance and the blood of Jesus, You remember my failures no more.  Thank You for Your forgiveness and for remembering my faith!

2022-02-15T06:48:50-07:00June 20th, 2022|

Sun, Stand Still

On the day the Lord gave the Amorites over to Israel, Joshua said to the Lord in the presence of Israel: “Sun, stand still over Gibeon, and you, moon, over the Valley of Aijalon.” Joshua 10:12

The Scripture above is probably the greatest faith statement ever made in the Bible.

A group of people who lived in the Promised Land were called the Gibeonites.  They were afraid of Joshua and the Israelites, so they deceived them into believing they were foreigners, having traveled a great distance.  Without praying for guidance, Joshua made a covenant with these people.  But the Gibeonites turned out to be one of the tribes that God had told them not to make covenant with.

What do you do when you blow it?  Joshua began to pray.

The other tribes were furious!  They heard what the Gibeonites had done and put together their armies against them.  But because Joshua and the Israelites had made a covenant with the Gibeonites, they were forced to protect them against all the other armies.  So, they began to fight.

First came a hailstorm, but it was very discriminating hail.  It only fell on the armies coming against them.  Then it looked as if the sun was going to go down, and if the sun went down, they may not be able to win the battle.  This is where Joshua made his faith statement, speaking to the sun: “Sun, stand still.  Moon, stay in the valley.” And the sun stood still until the Israelites had won the battle.

How did Joshua keep getting victory even when he blew it?  He kept praying, he kept meditating, he kept speaking God’s Word.

God wants us to triumph.  Jesus wants to lead us from victory to victory.  And He will, if we keep praying and speaking His Word.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for leading us from victory to victory.  When we fall short, remind us to pray.

2022-02-14T08:52:04-07:00June 13th, 2022|

The Rope of Hope

We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers, remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father…I Thessalonians 1:2-3 NKJV

There are three things in this verse that stand out to me: (1) faith can work, (2) love can labor, and (3) hope can give you patience.

If we feel we have faith, yet do nothing, we don’t really have faith.  If we say we have love, yet do nothing, we don’t really have love.  If we say we have hope, then we will be patient until we see the manifestation of what God has for us.

HOPE in the Hebrew means “rope.”  I believe God lets His rope down from Heaven so we can tie a knot in it and hold onto it until we see the manifestation of our faith and our love.

Rahab had hope in God’s Word.  She even put a red rope in her window (see Joshua 2).  Her wall stood when other walls fell.  When other people’s walls fall down, their lives fall down too.  If you hold onto the rope of God’s hope, however, your wall will stand.

Dear Heavenly Father, we know that it is through faith and patience that we inherit Your promises.  We make a decision to hold to faith and to have patience until we see the fulfillment of Your promises.  In Jesus’s Name, Amen.

2022-02-14T07:41:37-07:00June 6th, 2022|

Bless This House

And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell.  But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.  Joshua 24:15 NKJV

When you hear about someone who is as devoted to their work as Joshua was, you might start to wonder whether they are able to have a successful family life.  Joshua was always busy—leading the people into the Promised Land, trying to hear from God, and constantly meditating on God’s Word.  But the Bible says if you meditate on the Word day and night, you will be prosperous (see Joshua 1:8), so we know he must have been successful in his family life!

Kids do what they see you do, and your children need to see you in the Bible and the Bible in you.  Don’t stop reading the Word.  By your very behavior, you are showing them what is important.  Your children need to see your obedience to God—that you put Him first—so that they too can live a prosperous life.  Trust God, because He will show you if you are out of balance.

The first thing Rahab did when she made a covenant with the Israelites was to ask protection for her family (see Joshua 2).  When you get saved, you want your whole family to get saved.  So, when we become faithful followers of Christ, meditating on His Word day and night, God will bless us and make our homes prosperous.

Jesus, I declare that as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord!

2022-01-17T12:03:33-07:00May 30th, 2022|

The Secret to Success

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

If you meditate on the Word, if you speak the Word, if you to the Word, you will be prosperous and successful in all that you do!

Meditate means “to think about, to consider, to mull over something in your mind.” And it can also mean to memorize, to say it over and over and over again until it gets a hold of you.

You might think, “I would love to meditate on the Word, speak the Word, and do the Word all the time, but I just can’t do that.  I just don’t have that kind of time!” But let me ask you this:  Are you busier than Joshua?  Joshua had over two million people to lead.  He had to be sure they got enough to eat and drink.  He had to instruct them in how to fight their enemies.  And he still found time to meditate on the Bible, day and night.

Was he meditating on the Psalms?  No!  All Joshua had was the Pentateuch—the first five books of the Bible.  Can you imagine meditating on Leviticus?  But Joshua meditated on Leviticus.  We can be sure of it, because Joshua was successful.  Even when he made mistakes, he was still prosperous and successful.  And I have a gut feeling that Joshua was much busier than you or I will ever be!

So, go ahead, tell me you’re too busy.  But remember this:  if you are too busy for the Word, then you are too busy to be prosperous and successful!

Dear Heavenly Father, give me the strength to make time for Your Word, to stop making excuses and start making You a priority.  The Word in me is what will make me prosperous and successful.

2022-01-17T09:23:48-07:00May 23rd, 2022|

The Message

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.  Hebrews 13:8

Jesus quoted more from Deuteronomy and Psalms than any other books of the Old Testament.  He quoted from Deuteronomy in the Sermon on the Mount (see Matthew 5-7) and to fend off the devil who was trying to tempt Him in the wilderness (see Matthew 4).  Why did Jesus quote from Deuteronomy so much?  Because of the message.

Deuteronomy means “the message,” and we know that Jesus is both the Messenger and the Message.  Therefore, Deuteronomy shows the picture of the coming prophet, the Lord Jesus Christ: “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites.  You must listen to him” (Deuteronomy 18:15).

Basically, “the message” in Deuteronomy comes through three big sermons: (1) a review of how God has taken care of His people, (2) a recounting of the Ten Commandments and other laws, and (3) a call for commitment to the law through obedience.  We could also say it like this:  the first sermon looks backward, the second looks inward, and the third looks forward.

Why does Moses preach these sermons?  Because that generation didn’t see the miracles that their parents saw.  Their parents saw the opening of the Red Sea, the 10 plagues removed and the presence of God as a pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night.  Moses wanted that generation to know it’s the same miracle-working Father and the same Divine commandments that would make them successful.

Lord, thank you for being the God who doesn’t change.  I choose today to remember

2022-01-16T13:41:36-07:00May 16th, 2022|

Praise! Praise! Praise!

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.  Praise the Lord.  Psalm 150:6

God commands us to praise Him.  He says that if we are living, if there is breath inside of us, we need to praise Him.

One of the words for praise in Hebrew is “Judah.” As we follow the tribe of Judah throughout the Bible, we see that where it goes, so goes praise.

Moses prophesied in Deuteronomy that the voice of Judah would be heard throughout the earth.

David was of the tribe of Judah and wrote most of the Psalms, which certainly have become worldwide praises for the Lord.

We find that Jesus often praised the Father and gave Him thanks.  Jesus also came from the tribe of Judah.

We who are born-again also come from a “tribe of praise.” We are in the lineage of Jesus Christ; thus, we too are of the tribe of Judah and bring praise.

Do you have breath?  Do you have life?  Then praise Him today!  Praise Him everywhere, not just at a worship service—for praise is a way of life!  We need to let the earth hear our voices as we praise the Lord.

Lord, I declare that as long as I have breath in my body, I will praise You and give thanks to You because I come from the line of Judah, the line of Jesus, a tribe of praise.

2022-01-16T12:19:39-07:00May 9th, 2022|

God Provides Solutions to Our Challenges

Even for believers, there are moments when fear, doubt, and disappointment crowds in. When this happens, you may struggle to find room for more of God’s presence in your life.

That’s what occurred one day for Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith. An internal medicine physician, Dalton-Smith realized she felt divine dehydration—totally empty, spiritually. Smith listened as a patient recounted physical discomfort. As Dalton-Smith cared for the patient, attaching an IV and prescribing fluid, she realized that spiritually, she was in the same condition. She needed a spiritual IV, a continual infusion of the presence of God in her life.

That experience was the impetus for her to help her patients have a deeper understanding of the spiritual side of healing. By just focusing on physical, she wasn’t giving patients everything they needed to get to a place of healing and wholeness.

Aside from the physical, there is also the spiritual and mental (emotional) part of our bodies. Dalton-Smith recognized that people suffering physical ailments also need life-giving water that quenches thirst and refreshes souls. Simply treating issues of depression, stress, or anxiety with conventional cures can create more confusion because people can’t get whole without the added component of spiritual healing. Most of the time, there’s a deeper work that has to be done.

Often painful experiences such as abuse, divorce, infidelity, insecurity, dementia, and cancer cause deep spiritual and emotional pain. Dr. Dalton-Smith advises that you don’t allow pain to be a destination, but see it as part of your journey. Pain is part of our wilderness experience, but God never allows pain to be a place we visit without Him getting glory from it.

You can dream with God again and let Him redirect your steps. Rest assured, you can come empty and be filled to overflow by pouring out life’s hurts and receive God’s healing love. God sees us, knows our pain, and has a solution for it.

Click here to watch a special program with Saundra Dalton Smith.

 

2022-04-05T09:40:17-06:00May 2nd, 2022|

Walk in Obedience

Walk in obedience to all that the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.  Deuteronomy 5:33

A pastor once told me how God called him to Louisville, Kentucky, a number of years ago.  After receiving the call, he contacted one of the most spiritually gifted men in our nation at that time, who told him not to go because, “That place is simply overpowered with darkness —the worst place in the United States to go.  It is a graveyard for preachers.”

The pastor returned to the Lord and prayed, “Lord, here is a man of God saying not to go.”  And the Lord said, “But I’m telling you to go.” So, the man went.  He was a pastor in that city for 10 years, but didn’t seem to accomplish anything; the church was not doing well.  So, he went to Chicago to apply for another church.  While he was in Chicago, the Lord spoke to him and said, “What are you doing here?  I called you to Louisville.”

The pastor answered, “God, I’m failing in Louisville!  I’m tired of Louisville.  I’ve tried everything for 10 years, and nothing works.”  God said, “You’ll be out of My will.” And the pastor said, “I must not be in Your will as it is!” Then God said, “You’re in My will, but you need to call your church to fasting and prayer.” So, this man began a tremendous prayer program and within two years, his church grew from 200 people to 2,000.

What made the difference?  Obedience to God in prayer and fasting had broken the power of darkness over that city.  The powers of darkness were there from the beginning, but in 10 years, the pastor had done nothing necessary to break the force of those powers.

Sometimes we must fast and pray to break the powers of darkness and see unbelief turned into the revival of belief.

Jesus, I declare that You are mightier than the powers of darkness!

2022-01-10T08:55:54-07:00April 25th, 2022|

Signs and Wonders

You saw with your own eyes the great trials, the signs and wonders, the mighty hand and outstretched arm, with which the Lord your God brought you out.  Deuteronomy 7:19a

I would love for your do something very special today:  write down the good things you have seen Jesus do in your life.  “Well, there’s so many.” I know! Isn’t God wonderful?  Since seven is the number of completions, let’s write down seven of the good things that He has done.

What has He done in your life?  And does He have a future and a destiny for you?  Will He fail you?  No.  Will you fail Him?  Yes.  Will He leave you when you fail?  No!  He will stay with you, because He wants you to be successful.

After you write down seven good things He has already done in your life, I want you to write down three things that you’re going to believe Him for, that you want to see Him do in the next year.  Maybe it has to do with the salvation of a loved one, healing in your body, or prosperity.  Whatever it is, write it down.

You can write them in the margins of this book or on a separate sheet of paper.  But put them down on paper so you can go back and see them, praise God for them, and watch Him work in your life!

As you reflect on the good, He has already done and the good you are believing Him to do in your life, look at the signs and wonders in the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible.  The Jesus in the Pentateuch is the same Jesus Who lives in you and Who will perform the miraculous signs and wonders in your life!

Lord, I declare that You are the God of signs and wonders!  Thank You for all that You have done and will do in my life!

2022-01-10T07:45:57-07:00April 18th, 2022|

Jesus Our Sacrifice

I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people.  Leviticus 26:12

A sacrifice is the basis of all true worship.  It is what cleanses us, and frees us from the guilt and punishment we deserve.  In Leviticus, we see five sacrifices:  the burnt offering, the meal offering, the peace offering, the sin offering, and the trespass offering.  The first three offerings were voluntary; they were expressions of thanksgiving and celebration.  But the last two—the sin and trespass offerings—were required.

What is sin?  It means to miss the mark.  What about trespass?  Trespass means to intrude on someone else’s property or to cause someone else harm.  So, Leviticus is telling us that when someone made a mistake or hut another person, it was mandatory that they make amends through an offering.

Do we still make the same mistakes today?  Yes!  Do we still make offerings?  Have you ever sacrificed a ram after trespassing?  No!  Why not?  Because Jesus is our offering.

Jesus, the burnt offering, consecrated Himself.  He said to the Father, “Thy will be done.”  Jesus, the meal offering, took our poverty so He could meet all of our needs.  Jesus, the peace offering, gave His peace (see John 14:27).

Jesus, the sin offering, took our sin, our missing the mark: “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

And the same Jesus is our trespass offering.  He took the trespass that we make on others and trespass others make against us so that we can forgive in His blood, He forgave us.

Jesus, I declare that I am the righteousness of God in Christ, set free from the bonds of sin because You made the ultimate sacrifice for me!

2022-01-09T15:44:35-07:00April 11th, 2022|

To Feel as Jesus Feels

That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death.  (Philippians 3:10 NKJV)

For years I did not understand the part of this verse that speaks of “the fellowship of His sufferings.”  What does it mean to “fellowship” in His sufferings?  I could better understand the “power of His resurrection” than the “fellowship of His sufferings.”

Then I began to ask, “Why DID Jesus suffer?” I realized that He suffered for the lost.  Jesus suffered to the point that He was willing to die.  When we enter into the fellowship of His suffering, we feel the way Jesus felt toward lost souls, and we become willing to die too.

Moses was willing to die so that his people might enter the Promised Land.  He said to God, ‘If You’re going to erase their names from the book, then You might as well erase mine, too’ (see Exodus 32:32).  Paul felt it, too, when he said, ‘I wish I could carry this curse and be cut off from Christ for the sake of my people’ (see Romans 9:3).

What were these men feeling?  The fellowship of the Lord’s suffering!  I believe that the Holy Spirit will let us enter into that fellowship of suffering for the lost

Dear heavenly Father, help us to remember that Jesus suffered to save the lost.  Never let us think that we are too “spiritual” to have a burden for the lost.  Thank You for helping us, by Your Spirit, to enter the fellowship of the Lord’s suffering.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

2022-01-09T12:24:41-07:00April 4th, 2022|

Devine Design

And the tabernacle of meeting shall move out with the camp of the Levites in the middle of the camps; as they camp, so they shall move out, everyone in his place, by their standards.  Numbers 2:17 NKJV)

When I read through the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible, I see there was divine order in everything.  It wasn’t, “Wherever you want to sleep, sleep.  Wherever you want to camp, camp.” It wasn’t that way at all!  It was very much in order.

For example, there were detailed instructions on setting up the Tabernacle—the dwelling place of the Divine—which included it having only one door (see Exodus 26:36).  Why is this important?  What does it tell us about divine order?  Well, Jesus Himself said, “I am the door…” (John 10:9a KJV).  There is only one way to the Father, and that is through Jesus Christ!

God also had very specific instructions about the arrangement of the camps and how they moved together (see Numbers 1-2).  As God prepared the Israelites for their journey to the Promised Land, He told Moses He wanted three tribes to the north, three tribes to the south, three tribes to the east, and three tribes to the west.  And He named the tribes.  So, these tribes came in by layers and camped.  And they camped around the tabernacle.  They formed a cross and made the tabernacle the center of their lives.  What does this tell us?  Jesus needs to be the center of our lives!

Reading about the design of the tabernacle, the regulations for sacrifices, and the order of the tribes may initially come across as boring and tedious, but not when you see that through the divine details, God is pointing us to the Cross!

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for caring about the details of our lives!  Help us to maintain proper order – always keeping Jesus first!

2021-12-14T06:49:40-07:00March 28th, 2022|

A Covenant of Salt

Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. Colossians 4:6 NKJV

God wants our conversation to be salty.  Why?  Because our talk makes people thirsty!  It can make others thirsty for what we have.

One time I was interviewed on a secular news program.  I was just starting to go on daily television and this interviewer asked me, “Why would you want to go on daily television?  You’re already on television on Sundays.  And there are all kinds of religious programs.  Why would you want to be another one?”  I heard in my spirit what to say.  I said, “Why do you think religious programs are on the air?” He said, “Well, to help people.”  And I said, “Do you think everyone is helped?” I got him!  And that was the end of it.  That, my friends, was salt!

Friend, we need to let our speech have salt in it.  Numbers 18:19 says that God made an “everlasting covenant of salt” with us, so His holiness enables us to be the salt of the earth to everyone we meet.  Don’t just agree with everything.  Don’t just gossip.  Don’t just say how bad the weather is.  Get salty!  Say, “God can change this!  God can do anything!” We are the ones charged with bringing the salt of God’s Word to the thirsty.

Jesus, You said we are to be the salt of the earth.  Help me to never lose my saltiness!

2022-03-23T11:43:31-06:00March 21st, 2022|

We Will Gain the Victory

With God we will gain the victory, and he will trample down our enemies.  Psalm 108:13

After a crusade, a middle-aged woman shared her dynamic testimony with me.

The woman’s son was involved in deep sin and crime in Chicago.  He had been using and selling drugs.  One night his mother felt strongly impressed by the Lord to pray in the Spirit for an hour for her son.  At 10:00 pm her son called and said, “Mother, what have you been doing for the last hour?” She told him that the Spirit of God had directed her to pray for him.

The son explained that he had recently sold some bad drugs to a man, who had returned that very evening with a gun and the intent to kill!  But the man couldn’t pull the trigger.  He kept trying to pull the trigger, and finally he threw the gun on the floor and said, “I can’t fire this gun!  There’s something your mother is doing that is keeping me from killing you.” The man ran from the room.

Needless to say, the son came home and gave his heart to Jesus.  And guess what?  He is now preaching the Gospel!

Folks, God is for your family.  He wants your family safe.  I have members of my family that are not saved yet, but I’m believing for it.  I’m standing in faith with them.  With God, we will gain the victory!

Dear Heavenly Father, we thank You today that no man or situation is impossible.  With Your Word and Your loving support, we shall do valiantly in any situation.  We shall tread down our enemies.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

2021-12-13T08:25:33-07:00March 14th, 2022|

A Melody in Your Heart

The adversaries of the Lord shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them:  The Lord shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed.  – (I Samuel 2:10 KJV)

Who is the Lord’s anointed that Hannah sings about in the Scripture above?  That is the Messiah!  In Hannah’s song of gratitude to God for blessing her with a son, she is the first to sing about Jesus.

In Luke 1, we hear a similar song from Mary, called the “Magnificat.” In fact, some of Hannah’s song is even quoted when Mary sings about her own son.

Hannah prays: “My heart rejoices in the Lord.” And Mary sings: “And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.”

Mary prays: “Holy is His Name.” And Hannah sings: “No one is holy like the Lord.”

Hannah and Mary certainly had much to sing about and be grateful for, and so do we!  Because we, too, know the revelation of Jesus.

The Bible tells us to speak to ourselves in psalms and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in our hearts unto the Lord (see Ephesians 5:18-20).  This is how Jesus is revealed to us, how we show gratitude, and how we keep our hearts and minds focused on Jesus.

Sing unto the Lord the words of Hannah:  my heart rejoices in You; I rejoice in Your salvation.  No one is holy like You; There is none besides You; there is no rock like our God!

2021-12-13T07:06:29-07:00March 7th, 2022|

Bitter or Better

I know a family who owns a business.  I know them quite well and I have never seen a family who are so called to give as this family.  They are worth over four and a half billion dollars!  But they lie very simple—the cars they drive, the way they dress—because they live to give.  And I know personally that they gave over 210 million dollars to Oral Roberts University.  Honey, that’s giving!

But then along comes Obamacare and certain restrictions were put on them.  And they said, “We can’t do it and be true to God.”  They refused to conform to the standards being imposed upon them, which would mean that they would lose everything.

Now, they could have said, “God, all we want to do is give to You.  Look at how much we’ve given!  And this is how You repay us?  We’ve been betrayed!”  They could have been bitter.  But they didn’t do that.  They stood firm in their faith.  They stood on the promises of God to Abraham: “I will surely bless you…”  They called us and we fasted and prayed.  They took their case to court.  And they won!  Now God is blessing them even more.

We all have the choice to be bitter and miss the blessing, or be better and get the blessing.  What’s your choice?

Dear heavenly Father, I am choosing to leave the betrayals of people in Your hands under the blood of Jesus.  I want to go into a higher level of faith this day.  I see that You want to bless me and multiply Your blessings.  Amen!  Hallelujah!

2021-12-12T12:55:08-07:00February 28th, 2022|

Authority in Jesus Name

“Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy; for I am the Lord your God.”  (Leviticus 20:7 KJV)

Sanctify means “to be set apart.” We are set apart for God, not for the devil or the world, nor even for ourselves.

A young Christian man once told me that he couldn’t read his Bible.  I asked him why.  He said, “Because the devil won’t let me.  When I open my Bible, it is as though an evil spirit comes into the room and harasses me, and I can’t read my Bible.”

“Don’t you know,” I said, “that you are set apart under God and have authority over the devil?”

I gave him the Scripture of authority in Luke 10:19: “I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.”

Then I said, “Go back to your room and begin to read your Bible.  If the devil tries to harass you, tell him to get out, in Jesus’ Name; that you have been sanctified and set apart, that you have the authority in the Name of Jesus.”

At dinner that evening, the young man told me that when he began to read his Bible, sure enough, the devil tried to harass him.  But the man stood his ground and used his authority in Jesus.

The devil fled!  The devil is dumb, but he is smart enough to fear the Name of Jesus.  And when the devil looks at us, what does he see?  He sees Jesus in us!

Dear Heavenly Father, we pray today that we will see that we are set apart to bring glory to You.  We are set apart to achieve and do great and mighty exploits in Your Name.  Amen!

2021-11-08T07:43:22-07:00February 21st, 2022|

Simply Believe

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

Sometimes I ask God, “God, who am I that you would use me in the capacity that you do?” I’ve gotten to be with kings and presidents from all around the world.  I’ve gone to countries no one else can go to.  I’ve ministered healing and salvation to more people that you can count.  You say, “Well, who are you that God would use you that way?” I agree!  Who am I?  The truth—I’m a believer!  It really is as simple as that.

You say, “But I’m different.” That’s right, you are different.  I’m different from you and you are different from me.  He makes us all so individual.  None of our fingerprints are the same.  None of our personalities are exactly the same, or our gifts or other traits.  But God know our individuality—He is the One who made us so unique!  I like that.  Sometimes I can think, “Oh, I wish I was as good as this person I know” or “I wish I had the looks of that person.” But God made me to be unique.  If you ever doubt that, you ought to read Psalm 139.  I memorized that Psalm because it says He “fearfully and wonderfully” made us.  In fact, each day of our lives are written in one of His books.  How wonderful is that?! He’s so personally involved and He carries you on His heart and that’s beautiful to us.  And what do we have to do in return?  Simply believe!

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus, to die on the cross so that I would have eternal life with You.  Thank You for loving me because You created me, not because of the things I do.  I receive Your love today.

2021-11-08T06:49:31-07:00February 14th, 2022|

Recharge Your Battery

“But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit” Jude 20 (NKJV)

I love this scripture.  It has become so powerful in my life because I have found that praying in the Holy Spirit—praying in tongues—literally recharges my spirit.

Has your car battery ever “gone dead”?  It usually happens when you least expect it-perhaps when you’re late for an appointment.  Cars will usually recharge themselves.  But when we don’t take care of the car, sometimes the car doesn’t take care of the battery.  The same thing can happen in our faith.  When we don’t recharge it with prayer, it can “go dead” too!

When I feel as though my faith doesn’t have the strength to carry me through a situation, I “recharge” it with a time of praying in tongues.  I find that it recharges not only my faith, but also my mind, emotions, and physical body.  It causes my circumstances to change, and better yet, my attitude changes.

There are many times when we can pray in tongues; when we take a shower, while we’re driving, and even on airplanes.  Recharge your “battery” daily.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today we pray that we will be men and women full of the Spirit—overflowing with the Spirit!

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-11-07T15:03:34-07:00February 7th, 2022|

God Never Gives Up

“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-26

All too often we have a tendency to think, “I blew it.  Again.  God is probably so tired of me and my mistakes that He’s going to throw me out.” No!  Read what God did with the Israelites in the book of Numbers.

The Israelites started complaining a mere three days into their wilderness journey.  And here they had just left Egypt healthy and wealthy, free and whole!

What did the Israelites complain about?  Well, first they complained that there was no food.  So, God sent manna from Heaven.  Then they got tired of the manna and asked for meat.  So, what did God do?  He sent them meat!  And do you remember how they repaid God?  They made a golden calf…and worshiped it!

But do you know what?  God still stuck with them.  He gave them His special presence at night, the pillar of fire, and His special presence by day, the pillar of cloud.  The pillars not only showed them His presence, but it also led and protected them.

God sticks with us.  His Holy Spirit presence sticks with us.  God saw the failures of His children, the Israelites, but He didn’t give up on them.  And God sees your failures, but He doesn’t give up on you.

Maybe you feel you are a failure in your walk with Christ; you’ve blown it and you feel like you’re going to keep blowing it.  Maybe you’re in an addiction.  I don’t know.  But I do know that Jesus came to set the captives free, and it doesn’t happen by your self-efforts.  It happens by the cross—the redemption of the cross.

Jesus, I declare that You are full of mercy and grace in my time of need.  Thank You for never giving up on me!

2021-11-02T07:50:20-06:00January 31st, 2022|

What God Has Blessed

Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.  Isaiah 65:24

We read in Numbers 22-24 that Balak, king of Moab, was afraid of the Israelites, whose reputation had spread throughout the land as a powerful nation blessed by God.

So Balak summoned Balaam, “Now come and put a curse on these people, because they are too powerful for me.  Perhaps then I will be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land.  For I know that whoever you bless is blessed, and whoever you curse is cursed” (Numbers 22:6).

Balaam discovered, however, that he could not curse God’s people.  Every time he tried to prophesy evil, he prophesied good.

Finally, he said to the king of Moab, “I don’t know what to do.  I can only speak what God puts in my mouth; I can’t curse what God has blessed.” Isn’t that wonderful!  And just think, Jesus took the curse for us so that we’d be blessed!  You can’t curse what’s been taken to the Cross!

God is so good to His people.  The Israelites probably didn’t even know that this battle was occurring.  They were probably just going about their business without any clue that the king of Moab was trying to put a curse on them.

Isaiah 65:24 says that before we even know what to pray for, God already has an answer for us.  How many times has God protected us, sent us angelic protection and like the Israelites, we were not even aware of it?

Dear Heavenly Father, You say in Your Word that angels move at Your command.  We take hold of Your Word, and we ask that angels will help carry it out.  We take hold of the promise that You protect us, watch over us, and neither sleep nor slumber.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

2021-11-01T10:12:34-06:00January 24th, 2022|

Avoid the Quicksand

“I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.” (Psalm 34:4 NKJV)

God’s will is to deliver us from fear.  When I was pregnant with Sarah, my son caught the measles.  The doctor and everyone was frightened.  They thought that I would catch them and that, through this disease, my unborn baby would be deformed.

I sought the Lord about it.  I knew that God had given me this baby supernaturally.  He had caused me to be pregnant even though the doctors had said that it could never happen.  I knew that if God could give me a baby, He could also keep my baby healthy.  I did not get the measles.  Sarah was not harmed, and she leads a very normal, healthy life.  It was only as I sought God that I was set free from fear.

Fear can be just like a pit of quicksand.  The more you struggle in it, the deeper you sink.  But once we realize that fear can be avoided and bypassed, then God is free to work His supernatural wonders in our lives.  When you find yourself caught in the “quicksand” of fear, stretch out your hand to God and let Him pull you free!

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us today to see You and recognize that fear comes from the devil.  We will resist fear, in Jesus’s name, and be set free.

Amen.

2021-11-01T09:25:09-06:00January 17th, 2022|

The Mysteries of God Revealed

And He said to them, “To you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to those who are outside, all things come in parables…” (Mark 4:11 NKJV)

I have found that God does not want His Word to be a mystery to us; He wants it to be a revealed truth.

When I find passages that I don’t understand in the Bible, I write a question mark beside them and ask the Father to reveal the answer to me.  If I’m patient, eventually God will give me a beautiful revelation.

Once I didn’t understand why God had not allowed Moses to enter the Promised Land.  I knew Moses had been disobedient when he hit the rock twice (see Numbers 20:11).  But if I had been Moses and was forced to listen to a bunch of complainers for forty years, I would have been tempted to hit the people instead of the rock!  So, I put a question mark by that verse and asked the Lord to give me a revelation.

The Lord said to me, ‘Moses DID get to enter the Promised Land!  Moses went in on the Mount of Transfiguration with Elijah and Jesus.’  I turned in my Bible to Mark 9 and there is was:

There he [Jesus] was transfigured before them…and there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus.  (vv. 2, 4)

And the Lord said to me, “With whom would you rather enter the Promised Land—murmuring Jews or Jesus?”  And I thought, “You win, You win!”

Isn’t that awesome?!  We know the mysteries of God through revelation knowledge!

Dear Heavenly Father, open my eyes to behold wonders from Your Word today.  Give me hearing ears and seeing eyes to receive the revelations that You have for me.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

2021-10-25T07:09:51-06:00January 10th, 2022|

God’s Mercy Never Runs Out

winter scene: road and forest with hoar-frost on trees

“Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; but he who trusts in the Lord, mercy shall surround him” (Psalm 32:10 NKJV)

Have you ever been to the grocery store to buy some sale item—only to find that the store had “run out” of it?  You had two choices:  go somewhere else or go home empty-handed.

When it comes to God’s mercy, He’ll never send you somewhere else and you’ll never go home empty handed—because His mercy will never “run out”!  The Word promises that His mercy will endure forever.

There have been times when I know that I failed God and missed the leading of His Spirit.  I have been openly rebellious to His Word, and yet I have claimed His mercy and found that it always surrounded me.  I was fenced in with His mercy, which never runs out.

Sometimes we say that our PATIENCE runs out.  But I want to assure you that God’s MERCY never runs out.  I’m not giving you an excuse for sin because God does not have “greasy grace.”  But when we repent and turn from our sin, He has mercy.  Remember, God’s mercy is all around you and never runs out.  Call upon God’s mercy today; it is always available to you.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today for Your mercy—the mercy that never runs out.  Your mercy endures forever.  Thank you that it is available to us during our times of need.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-10-24T15:03:18-06:00January 3rd, 2022|

Look! The Lamb of God

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” -(John 1:29 NIV)

God has called me to travel all over the world to share His Word.  Many of the countries He calls me to aren’t exactly in love with Christians, and they’re not exactly in love with women, so I have to have faith in the blood of the Lamb to protect me!

The Lamb is a symbol of sacrifice throughout the entire Bible.  Revelation 13:8 even refers to Jesus as “the lamb who was slain from the creation of the world.

In Genesis, in the story of Cain and Abel, Abel brings a lamb from the flock and his sacrifice was acceptable to God.  So, we see that the Lamb is a sacrifice for us as individuals.

In Exodus, each Israelite family sacrificed a lamb and smeared its blood on their doorposts so that the death angel would pass over their houses and not take their first born.  Here we see that the Lamb is for our family.

In Leviticus, the Lamb is sacrificed for the nation.  So, He’s a Lamb for me, for you.  He’s a Lamb for my family, for your family.  And He’s the Lamb for our nation—for the United States, for America.

John the Baptist, however, had the greatest revelation of all.  He said, ‘Look at Jesus!  He is the Lamb, but He’s the Lamb for the whole world!’

Lord, I declare that Christ is the Passover Lamb for me, my family, my nation and the world!

2021-09-27T12:12:49-06:00December 27th, 2021|

Choose to Live in Your New Nature

“That you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts” Ephesians 4:22 (NKJV)

When we are born again, we are each given a new nature that is born of an incorruptible seed.  I understand that if you take cells from the seed of an apple or an orange, prepare them in the proper way, and place them under a special microscope, you will see the same genetic structure as the mature plant and its fruit.

When we are born again, an incorruptible seed is placed in our hearts.  I believe that within the seed is the basic structure of what we can be:  Jesus Christ!

Jesus’ nature does not sin.  When we sin, we are relying on the old, evil nature.  The Bible tells us that we are to crucify that nature and reckon our old selves dead unto sin.  We’re not to let sin rule or reign over us.  Our new nature is greater than the old, but we must decide which nature will reign in our lives.  He that is in us is greater that he that is in the world.  Choose to live in your new mature nature; the love of Jesus, the fruit of the Spirit, and the power of God’s Word.

Dear Heavenly Father,

In the name of Jesus, we cast off our old natures to put on the new nature of Jesus Christ.  We reckon ourselves dead to sin, and we walk in newness of life.

Amen.

2021-09-27T09:47:42-06:00December 20th, 2021|

Giant Mentality

Only do not rebel against the Lord.  And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will devour them.  Their protection is gone, but the Lord is with us.  Do not be afraid of them.” Numbers 14:9

Moses sent a dozen men to explore Canaan, but only Joshua and Caleb came back with a positive report that Israel could take the land flowing with milk and honey.  Where others saw giants, Caleb and Joshua saw the good land.  They even brought back some of its bounty for the others to see.

However, the towering obstacles obscured the good things from the view of most of Israel and caused the majority of the people to believe the negative report:

They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it.  All the people we saw there are of great size.  We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim).  We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them” (Numbers 13:32-33 emphasis added).

Have you ever wondered why some Christians are more successful in life than others?  It all depends on one’s outlook.  Some people have “grasshopper” vision.  They are so busy looking at what they aren’t that they don’t see what they can be in God.  Those with “giant” mentality, however, see themselves as God sees them, and they become what they want to be.

Even though you are a Christian, success only comes when you see yourself in the proper perspective and act accordingly.  We can believe all the negative reports around us, or we can put our faith in Jesus!

Dear Heavenly Father, help us to have giant mentality, with our eyes fixed on You.  Remind us of Your Truth from today’s Scripture verse: “the Lord is with us; Do not be afraid.”

2021-09-27T08:34:23-06:00December 13th, 2021|

The Lord Our God is One

“Hear, O Israel:  The Lord our God, the Lord is one!” Deuteronomy 6:4 (NKJV)

People often say to me, “I don’t like the Old Testament.  During that period, God was a harsh God of judgment and punishment; a God of discipline and not of compassion.  I like to read about Jesus in the New Testament more.”

I want to remind you that whatever Jesus is, the Father is also.  Jesus Himself declared that He and the Father are one (see John 10:30).  So, the Son didn’t change the Father’s mind about love, compassion, or healing.  Christ was the very expression of the Father’s love clothed in human flesh.

Moses, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote these profound words, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one” (Deuteronomy 6:4 NKJV).

Does that word “one” mean only one person?  The Hebrew word achad or echad used here for one means “united,” “a collection of thoughts,” “to be like or together.”

“Unity” must involve more than one.  For example, two people are united in one marriage.  The United States of America isn’t a single state, but a collection of states working together as one.  But I particularly like the definition: “collection of thoughts.”  What an interesting and precise revelation of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.  They think alike!  Consequently, Their purposes are united, Their words are united, and all Their actions agree.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for this revelation that You are One God, united with Jesus and the Holy Spirit as One loving and compassionate God, not just in the New Testament but from the very beginning.

2021-09-27T07:35:11-06:00December 6th, 2021|

Speak God’s Promises

“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony…” (Revelation 12:11a NKJV)

The book of Revelation makes tremendous promises to those who are overcomers.  Revelation 12:11a tells us very simply how to gain the promises: through the blood of Jesus.  When we speak God’s promises to our circumstances, to ourselves, or about the devil, we literally overcome whatever problems we are experiencing.

The paralyzed man at the pool of Bethesda was a real “overcomer.”  After waiting 38 years for his healing, the man one day met Jesus, who told him to “rise.”  Jesus challenged what seemed impossible.  The man rose up, took his bed, and walked.

Many times, I have had to speak the Word to overcome fear.  I had to tell my mind, “You’re not going to be in fear.  You are going to trust the Lord.”

David spoke to his soul.  When the devil attacked David’s mind, he told it to get in line with God’s Word.  Speak God’s Word to your mind too.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today we thank You for the blood of Jesus.  We choose to take the Word because it will grow and prevail in any circumstance or situation we face.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-09-26T12:38:38-06:00November 29th, 2021|

God is the Source of Blessing

As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had been. – (1 Kings 11:4).

I was walking the other day because I try to exercise regularly, and I was asking God for what I always think are big things: “I need this…I need that…I want you to get me in this country…I want you to do this…” And the Holy Spirit just said to me so sweetly, “Stop trying and let Me work.”

Have you ever tried to help God?  I think when we try to help God, we get into carnal thinking instead of listening for what God wants, and then we can do some stupid things.

After God gave Solomon wisdom, riches, honor and length the days, something happened.  I don’t know where he got turned around, but Solomon suddenly decided he needed help God.  He didn’t trust God to give him peace with all the nations, so in his carnal man he began to marry the daughters of the countries around him in order to try to keep peace with the nations.  But they were idolatresses.  And instead of converting to Solomon’s God, the began to turn Solomon’s heart away, and he began to worship their idols.  How sad!

Now folks, when we do well, let’s not get into pride saying, “I got this by my own brilliance and my wonderful physique,” but rather we need to acknowledge that God is the source of our blessings.  Remembering this is key to keeping us from trying to “help” God; instead, we trust that in His power, all things will come to pass, in His way and His timing.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for all the blessings in my life!  I know that You don’t need my help, but that You will use me to do Your will when I quit trying to go my own way!

2021-08-29T12:14:11-06:00November 22nd, 2021|

Meditate on the Good Things

“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer” – (Psalm 19:14)

As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.  Whatever we think about is going to come out of our mouths.  Out of the abundance of our hearts will our mouth speak.

It is very important that our minds meditate upon the good things of God, upon His Word.  MEDITATE means “to go over and over.”  I find that when my mind wants to dwell on ugly, negative things, the best remedy is to memorize certain scriptures or chapters of the Bible.  Then I begin to speak those scripture aloud, and my mind lines up with the Word.  God’s Word becomes the abundance of my heart from which my mouth speaks.

Another special blessing that comes from meditation on the Word is that the scripture will become stored in you—like data in a computer.  Then when you need the Word in a hurry, you just push a spiritual button and out it comes—ready to be ministered to any situation or circumstances!

Dear Heavenly Father,

Let us take hold of Your Word today.  Let us memorize it, think it, speak it, act it, eat it, dream it, and live it.  We know that when we are grounded in Your Word, then every word that comes from our mouths will be acceptable to You.  Our words come from Your strength.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-08-24T07:32:14-06:00November 15th, 2021|

Forgiveness Never Wears Out

“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.”  Mark 11:25 (NKJV)

When we pray the Lord’s prayer, it says that we will be forgiven our trespasses IF we forgive other.  One morning the Lord spoke to me about a certain situation and asked me to forgive someone.  I said, “Lord, I have forgiven that person at least 500 times.  My forgiveness is just about worn out.”

God answered, “No, your forgiveness never wears out because MY forgiveness never wears out.  When I forgave you, it was by My grace.  You received My grace.  Now the grace that forgave you also lives in you, and you can forgive with the same grace.”

His words were such a blessing.  I immediately began to forgive this person—not with my own forgiveness—but with the forgiveness that comes from God’s mercy.  In faith I forgave.  And in faith I was forgiven.  Now when I pray early in the morning, I just say, “Lord, I forgive anyone who has ever hurt me—even before they do it!”

Dear Heavenly Father,

Show us the victory of being a forgiving people.  Show us the victory and Your power of forgiveness in our lives.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-08-23T09:06:38-06:00November 8th, 2021|

The Favor of the Lord

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers. (3 John 1:2 NKJV)

Following the 10 plagues of Egypt, after almost 400 years of slavery, the Israelites were finally released to go to their Promised Land.  But they didn’t leave empty-handed!  Not only had God protected them and delivered them from slavery, He also put them into prosperity.

The Israelites did as Moses instructed and asked the Egyptians for articles of silver and gold and for clothing.  The Lord had made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people, and they gave them what they asked for; so, they plundered the Egyptians (Exodus 12:35-36).

God gave them favor with the Egyptians so that the Egyptians gave them everything they asked for.  The Bible also says none were sick, or weak, or feeble.  Spirit, soul, and body, they left healthy.  They left wealthy.  They left free.  They left whole!

I love this about Jesus.  He died for our sins and rose from the dead, but He also wants us whole.  He even said to the man at the pool of Bethesda before healing him: “Do you want to be made whole?” (see John 5:6 KJV)

Don’t just get the facts of this, get the faith of this!  Christ set you free from the slavery of sin, poverty, and disease.  The more you speak that over your life, the more you’ll see that He wants to do the same for you that He did for the Israelites.  He wants to free you, heal you, prosper you.  He wants to see you whole.

Lord, I declare that You not only came to set me free but You want to see me prosper in every area of my life!

2021-08-23T07:57:57-06:00November 1st, 2021|

The Glory of the Lord

Moses said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord.  I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant.  I am slow in speech and tongue.”– (Exodus 4:10 NIV)

It’s interesting to me that when God called Moses out of the burning bush, Moses said, “I can’t speak well!”  But in Deuteronomy we see Moses preaching, preaching, preaching.  For 34 verses, over the course of an entire month, all he does is preach!

What made the difference?  When Moses said, “I can’t speak,” God didn’t agree.  Instead God responded, “Who made your mouth?”

God will enable you to do the things He calls you to do.  When you say, “I can’t do it,” He doesn’t say, “That’s right.  You don’t have the talent for it.”  He says, “Who made you?”  God made you and God enables you to do anything He calls you to do.  If you don’t believe me, just read Hebrews 11 and you will see that He can do anything!

Next to Jesus, Moses was considered the most humble man that ever lived.  How could he stay so humble?  I think it’s because he saw the glory of the Lord.  If you remember, Moses said to God, “Show me your glory” (see Exodus 33:18).  And God said, “If you’ll stand in the cleft of the rock, I’ll put my hand over you and you’ll see my back side as I pass by.”  That was all Moses needed.  Moses saw enough of Him that he wanted greater glory.  He became hungry for the glory of the Lord.

If you saw Jesus like Moses saw Jesus, what would it make you?  It would make you humble!  When I see His goodness and how much He loves me, it humbles me, too.

Dear heavenly Father, You show us Your glory every time You enable us to do the thing You have called us to do.  We are humbled by the fact that there are no “I can’ts” in Your Book!

2021-08-03T08:20:37-06:00October 25th, 2021|

Be A Blessing Counter

But he who glories, let him glory in the LORD.  For not he who commends himself is approved, but whom the Lord commends.” (II Corinthians 10:17, 18 NKJV)

It is good to glory in the Lord because it keeps you from getting into an area of pride.  Pride is always the way down, and glorying in the Lord is always the way up.

One thing that often happen to pastors, on their “way up” in the ministry, is that they begin to exalt themselves.  The mistake that each of us makes—at least once—is to look at “our” successes and to believe that these things have happened because of our own abilities.  Sometimes we forget that God DID these things and we are only the vehicles for His work.  When we begin to walk in pride, we then stumble and fall.

I have found that the Lord really DOES want to exalt us—but He doesn’t want us to exalt ourselves.  Sometimes we count all of the wonderful things that WE have done, but they are actually all the wonderful things HE has done.  Be a blessing-counter!

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today we count our blessings.  We thank You for each of them.  Every advantage, every benefit that we have, truly comes from You, and we praise You for it.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-08-03T07:32:54-06:00October 18th, 2021|

Good-bye Cares

“Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”  I Peter 5:7 (NKJV)

Have you ever looked at photographs of our President BEFORE their term of office began and then AFTER it had ended?  Some of the men had, during that time, visibly aged YEARS beyond their actual stay in office.  Each man had carried the cares of an entire nation of his back.  The extreme MENTAL worry had caused a very PHYSICAL deterioration.

When you worry, you are carrying your cares.  Worry is very dangerous.  Your body, mind, and emotions were not designed to carry worry.  In some cases, worry causes mental breakdown and physical collapse.

Today let’s cast our cares on the Lord.  I want you literally to do this:  lift your hands up as though you were holding all of the cares and worries that have plagued you.  Say, “Lord, I cast all of my cares upon You.”  Literally take your hands and CAST those cares upon the Lord.

Now wave at those cares and say, “Good-bye, cares.  You are not mine.  You belong to my heavenly Father.”  He will take care of YOUR cares and turn them into a blessing.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today we are not going to worry.  We thank You for making provision for every area of our lives.  We believe that You will take care of the things that concern us.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-07-26T08:19:20-06:00October 4th, 2021|

Malachi 4:2

But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings.  You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall. -(Malachi 4:2 NASB)

2021-07-12T17:53:15-06:00September 28th, 2021|

We are His Beloved

The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes; and to Him shall be the obedience of the people. – (Genesis 49:10 NKJV)

In the scripture above, Jacob is prophesying over his sons, the 12 tribes of Israel.  He prophesies that Judah is going to produce a Shiloh.

What does Shiloh mean?  I see Shiloh as rest.  Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).  Wow!  This is Jesus in the very book of Genesis telling us what He will be in us and through us.

Sometimes we try to work it out and provide for ourselves and we don’t rest in the Lord, rest in His Word, knowing that He has seen ahead of the problem you are in today.  But He has made a provision for you so that you can come to Him and rest!

How do we enter God’s rest?  We walk in His Word; we walk by faith.

When I get up in the morning I say, “Good morning, Father.  Good morning, Jesus.  Good morning, Holy Spirit.  This is your beloved, Marilyn, here to enter Your rest.”  You might think, “That is so arrogant!”  Really?  In the New Testament He calls us “beloved” over forty times.  So, am I wrong when He said it, that man times, that I am His beloved?

Folks, having Jesus in your heart and seeing Him in every book of the Bible and every day of your life is really a love affair!  We are His beloved and we can rest in Him!

Dear heavenly Father, we are Your beloved sons and daughters.  Thank You for providing a Shiloh, a place of rest, for us from the very beginning!

2021-07-12T17:46:59-06:00September 27th, 2021|

Get Your Faith Lift Today

“You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness more than Your companions.” Psalm 45:7 (NKJV)

We want to be a joyful people.  We want to enter into the joy of the Lord because the joy of the Lord is our strength.  If the devil can steal your joy, he will steal your strength.

Have you noticed that evil people—wicked men and women—are not very joyful?  It shows on their faces and in their attitudes.  They are full of despair and hopelessness.  Why?  Because they do not love righteousness, and they don’t hate wickedness.  The way to live in joy is to love righteousness and hate wickedness.  Sin puts people in a place of despair and despondency.

Look, instead, at the faces of people who are free from sin.  Have you ever noticed the face of a person who has just accepted Jesus Christ as Savior?  There is such joy and happiness that radiates from someone who has experienced the new birth.  Sometimes it looks like 20 years have just been instantaneously wiped away—like a divine face lift.  But even better—it’s a divine FAITH LIFT!

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You that the joy of the Lord is our strength.  We enter this day with the strength of the Lord, and we will worship You and praise You throughout the day.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-07-12T08:36:33-06:00September 20th, 2021|

Cast Your Burdens onto Jesus

Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.  -(Psalm 55:22 NKJV)

Jesus came to carry our burdens.  But so many times we try to carry them alone and, in doing so, we absolutely break ourselves mentally, emotionally, and physically.

When one of my close relatives died, I saw his wife carrying the grief and sorrow.  I could see that it was physically robbing her health.  She was a born-again believer, so I called her one day and asked her if Jesus had carried her sins.  She said, “Yes, He has.  You know that He has, because I’m a born-again believer.”

I said, “But you are still carrying your griefs and sorrows.  Jesus not only carried your sins and sicknesses, He also carried your griefs and sorrows.”

When my relative heard and received this message from God’s Word, it was as though a great burden had been lifted from her shoulders.  The light from the Word had penetrated the darkness of her grief.  That very day she cast her grief and sorrow on the Lord and was set free.

Jesus, I declare that this day I will cast my burdens on You.  Help me see that You know how to provide for that which is committed into Your hands.  Amen.

2021-07-05T09:57:35-06:00September 13th, 2021|

Read, Hear & Keep the Word

“Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it” (Revelation 1:3a NKJV)

There are three verbs that I want you to observe in this scripture.  God will bless those who READ His Word, those who HEAR His Word, and those who KEEP His Word.  We love God’s Word and want it to work in us.  But in order for the Word to really work in our lives, it must consume us!

When you read God’s Word, ask Him to give you hearing ears.  Ask Him to help you remember what you have read so that you might receive the manifestations of His Word in your life.

Ephesians 5:18 warns us not to be drunk with wine, but “filled with the Spirit.”  In the same way, so that it can consume our souls, overpower us with its truth, and “keep” us forever in the Word.  Remember, blessings come to those who read, hear, and keep the Word.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We ask You, in Jesus’s name, to help us read Your Word today.  Open our spiritual eyes so that we can be blessed as we read Your scriptures.  Let us receive Your revelations.  Help us to keep the Word in our hearts that we might see its manifestations in our daily living.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-06-28T09:40:45-06:00September 6th, 2021|

Made in His Image

Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”  -(Genesis 1:26 NKJV)

When God designed the first man and woman, they were absolutely perfect.  The master plan was set in motion by the Father, Who said, “Let us make mankind in our image.”  Then Jesus executed the plan by scooping up a lump of clay and shaping a man; out of man He fashioned a woman.

Stick with me for a minute here.  When speaking of Jesus, Colossians 1:16 tells us that “…all things were created by him, and for him” (KJV).  In John 1:3, we read that by God’s Word were all things made, “…without him nothing was made that has been made.”  Verse 14 of John 1 positively identifies the Word as Jesus Christ: “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.”  But it is not until the Holy Spirit breathed the life of God into Adam’s spirit did Adam become a living being.

So, you see, you have been made in the likeness and image of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  You and I are just “chips off the old block!”

Father, I declare that You created me in Your image—the image of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—and I will honor You with the body, mind, and soul You created.

2021-06-07T13:33:59-06:00August 30th, 2021|

On Top of the Circumstances

“To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame…”

Revelation 3:21a (NKJV)

Have you ever used the little phrase “under the circumstances”?  Once when we were having a tremendous crisis, I said to someone, “Under the circumstances, I think I’m doing quite well.”

The Lord spoke back to me, “What are you doing UNDER the circumstances?  You’re supposed to be ON TOP OF the circumstances.”  Revelation 3:21a certainly reaffirms that promise!  If we want to sit with Jesus in heavenly places, we’re going to have to sit in the overcoming position.

Do you have some circumstances that are bowing you under?  Do you feel crushed under the weight of situations that seem beyond your control?  Take hold of God’s promise for “overcomers.”  Confess God’s Word that you will sit on the throne with Jesus, far above the cares of all worldly problems.  We can’t be under the circumstances; we must be on top of them.  Jesus is in us, so He gives us the power to overcome and sit in heavenly places too.

Dear Heavenly Father,

I thank You today that I am not under my circumstances.  I am above them.  In fact, I am sitting high above my circumstances and command them to line up with Your Word. 

In the Name of Jesus,

Amen.

2021-06-07T11:48:04-06:00August 23rd, 2021|

Let All Nations Praise Him

God be merciful to us and bless us, and cause His face to shine upon us, Selah

That Your way may be known on earth, Your salvation among all nations.

Let the people praise You, O God; Let all the people praise You.

For You shall judge the people righteously, and govern the nations on earth.  Selah

(Psalm 67:1-4 NKJV)

The spreading of the Gospel to all nations will result in great praise.  One glorious day we will live in a righteous world under the reign of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Let’s live this life in an overabundance of praise to God for His supernatural intervention even before we see the miracles manifested.

2021-06-07T09:27:53-06:00August 16th, 2021|

Create in Me

“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10 NKJV)

Create means to “make something out of nothing.”  When we are born again, God makes us a new creation.  He gives us a new seed; we are born again of incorruptible seed, the seed of His new life.

Notice that the Word says “new” life—not second-hand or renovated or revamped—BUT ENTIRELY NEW!  God never said to Himself, “Well, here I’ve got Me a sinner.  I think I’ll just throw on a new cover, sort of like renovating a mattress!”  We’re not like a “renovated mattress,” but we have, instead, a brand-new life inside!

Because we have that new creation within, we can have a renewed spirit.  Our mind, conscience, will and intellect can be renewed daily with God’s Word.  We can live in our new nature, rather than our old.

Make this daily decision: “Will I live in the old man, or will I live in the new man?”  Today let’s crucify the old man and decide to live in the newness of Christ’s life.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You that, as born-again Christians, we have new man inside us.  We do not have to live in the old man.  We make the choice to live in the newness of life.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-06-01T09:29:30-06:00August 9th, 2021|

Seeing Jesus

To them God has chosen to make know among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.  -(Colossians 1:27 NKJV)

I was 16 years old when I was born again.  Up until that time, I knew about Jesus, but I didn’t know I could have Jesus.  That year, I went to a Methodist youth camp where they told us we could be born-again, we could have Jesus on the inside of us:  Christ in you, the hope of glory!

I prayed, repented of my sins, invited Him to come into my heart and to be the Lord of my life.  And let me tell you, from the age of 16 until now, He’s never left me, never forsaken me, and I love Him.  He’s real!  He’s real in my life every day.

So, I began to read the Word, and I found that Jesus is in every book of the Bible.  That put such a passion in me to get everyone hooked on the whole book.  To see Him in Genesis.  To see Him in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.  Because often we say, “Jesus isn’t in the Old Testament.”  Or, “Who is Jesus in the Old Testament?”  But did you know that a lot of the New Testament is quoted from the Old?  How can you understand the New Testament if you don’t ready the Old?  He is in every book!

I just want to share Jesus; I want to share Who He is in you and how the whole Bible is about Who Jesus is.  But He’s not just the Word for us to read about and know about, He’s the Word to be made flesh in us and through us.  Because when you receive Him into your heart, it’s totally transformational.

Father, open my heart to hear from You and what You would say to me.  Make Jesus flesh in and through me.  Help me see Jesus every day.  Amen!

2021-06-01T08:08:24-06:00August 2nd, 2021|

Fear Is Your Enemy

“Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You.  I will not fear what can flesh do to me?” – (Psalm 56:3, 4b NKJV)

Fear is a terrible thing, for it is the opposite of faith.  Fear caused Adam and Eve to sin.  I believe that fear is not only a sin, but it is THE SOURCE of all sin.

The devil loves to confuse people and ensnare them in all sorts of traps.  When satan discovers what our greatest fears are, he immediately uses those fears to trap our minds and prevent us from overcoming frightening situations.

When we fall into satan’s trap, we are tricked into playing his game.  And whenever we play games with the devil, we are committing a sin that can lead to even more sin.  Therefore, we must repent of it and ask to be delivered from it.

Today let faith be your friend and fear be your enemy.  After all, the only part of you that the devil should see is the sole of your shoe.

Tread down fear in Jesus’s Name.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today we put our trust in You.  We will not be afraid of men.  We will have supernatural confidence that You will put us over.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-04-12T09:25:14-06:00July 26th, 2021|

Our Wonderful Inheritance

Lord, you alone are my inheritance, my cup of blessing.  You guard all that is mine.  The land you have given me is a pleasant land.  What a wonderful inheritance! – (Psalm 16:5-6 NLT)

The LORD will establish you as a holy people to Himself, just as He has sworn to you, if you keep the commandments of the LORD you God and walk in His ways.  Then all peoples of the earth shall see that you are called by the name of the LORD, and they shall be afraid of you. –(Deuteronomy 28:9 NKJV)

God desires that your “land” be a delight, a representation of your inheritance in Him, and the pleasant territory described by David.

Your “land” includes the time and space allotted to you by God.  When we are faithful to God’s commands and manage our territory well, we become a beacon to others, a testimony of God’s goodness and favor.  Moses said the nations would stand in awe of God’s people because of their unique relationship with the Almighty.

God has given each of us a territory to occupy.  The upkeep of our “delightful land” falls to us; it is not accidental, but a matter of assuming our rightful authority.  In God’s eyes, what goes on in your territory is your responsibility.

2021-04-12T08:18:31-06:00July 19th, 2021|

Stand Fast on The Word

“Having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints” Revelations 5:8b (NKJV)

Our prayers are very important to God.  But if we really want our prayers to count, we must pray the Word.  Why?  Because the Word cannot return void.

Prayers of self-pity will never bring supernatural results.  It’s only when we pray God’s Word that we begin to fill up the golden vials (bowls) of heaven.  God keeps those prayers because He keeps His Word.  Answers will come.  Pity-parties are not the answer.  God’s Word will bring the supernatural.

When we send out prayers to God, we must also check out hearts to see if there is spiritual “static” that will prevent our prayers from traveling up to heaven.  Our messages to God can get lost or waylaid if we have some unconfessed sin.  If your prayers are going unanswered, check your heart to see if you are harboring sin.  If so, repent, and watch your prayer wing its way to heaven.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today help us to see that self-pity never does anything.  It is unbelief, and it is simply an occasion for the flesh to exalt itself.  We trust in Your promises.  We put our flesh down and stand fast on Your Word.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-04-12T07:20:50-06:00July 12th, 2021|

His Love Endures Forever

The Hebrews call Psalm 136 the “Great Psalm of Praise.”  This psalm was probably a responsive singing.

The worship leader sang the first half of each verse, and the congregation always sang response: His love endures forever.

One thing we know will last for all time — God’s love.  How great is our God!

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good.

His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the God of gods.

His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:

His love endures forever.

(Psalm 136:1-3 NIV)

 

How do you see God’s love at work in your life?

Let’s praise Him always!

2021-04-06T09:23:24-06:00July 5th, 2021|

Prepare Your Heart

“And he did evil, because he did not prepare his heart to seek the Lord.” (II Chronicles 12:14 NKJV)

It takes daily preparation to achieve an established heart.  We must pray daily and renew our minds in God’s Word so we will be spiritually in tune with our Father’s will, Jesus’ will, and the Holy Spirit’s leading.

Many times, we become involved in sin because we have not spiritually prepared ourselves to meet the day.  It is good to seek God early.  Sometimes people find it very difficult to “seek God early.”  Morning is often a time when our minds are fuzzy.  It seems easier to do anything except spending some concentrated time with the Lord.  But when we try to “meet the Lord,” He will, in turn, help us “meet the day.”

When God helps us to go out to “meet the day,” we’re prepared for good, not evil.  We, thereby, have brought the supernatural into our day long before we have encountered anything else.  Learn to see the Lord early.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Truly it is good to seek You early in the day; thank You that we have a way to prepare our hearts.  In preparing our hearts, we are kept free from evil.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-03-30T12:45:00-06:00June 28th, 2021|

God’s Praise is the Sweetest Sound of All

In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: “Do not fear; Zion, let not your hands be weak.  The LORD your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”

(Zephaniah 3:16-17 NKJV)

One day, all of the faithful will be gathered in one place, and the Mighty One will be in our midst.  We will shout the victory!  We will rejoice and be glad with all our hearts.

And God will sing back to us.  He too will rejoice — over us!

What an awesome sound that will be — a duet between the Creator and His creation.

2021-03-30T10:07:01-06:00June 21st, 2021|

Choose a Clear Direction!

“You enlarge my path under me; so my feet did not slip.” – (II Samuel 22:37 NKJV)

When we walk as the Lord leads us, we will not stumble because He leads in a very clear direction.  Although we may feel that we lack the natural ability to walk where He leads, He will endow us with the spiritual ability to do it.

One time I was a guest speaker at a large convention.  One of the other guests was an outstanding preacher whom I had admired for years.  When he said that he could hardly wait to hear me, fear stuck!

I thought, “Dear Lord, if he stays to hear me, I’ll faint on the spot.  Let him receive an emergency call; get him out of here!”

I was overwhelmed by insecurity.  The Lord encouraged me.  He reminded me that my presentation alone wouldn’t impress anyone, but that the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit would inspire the people.

In my fear I had seen a lack of ability in myself, rather than God’s sufficiency.  I repented quickly, dismissed the fear, and asked for God’s anointing on my message.  God’s anointing was especially sweet that morning, and I gave Him all praise for it.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us today to be led by Your Spirit and not by our flesh.  Help us to know that wherever You guide us, You will also enable us.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-03-30T07:56:02-06:00June 14th, 2021|

Praising God Brings Favor

They followed a daily discipline of worship in the Temple followed by meals at home, every meal a celebration, exuberant and joyful, as they praised God.  People in general liked what they saw.  Every day their number grew as God added those who were saved.  –(Acts 2:46-47 The Message)

This passage from Acts describes the daily lives of the first believers.  It is a life marked by simple acts — worshiping, taking meals together, and praising God.

Amazingly, these simple acts put the early Christians in a favorable light, and every day their number grew.

Living a simple life of prayer and praise may be the most powerful thing we can do to reach the world with the good news.

2021-03-29T12:23:00-06:00June 7th, 2021|

Turn it Over to God

Therefore submit to God.  Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”  (James 4:7 NKJV)

How many times have you quoted the verse, “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you”?  But we cannot resist the devil if we don’t submit to God first.  When we find ourselves in difficult situations, we must look first at ourselves in difficult situations, we must look first at ourselves and ask, “Have I submitted to God in this area of my life, this situation, or this circumstance?”  Once we have truly submitted to God, we then have the power to resist the devil.  Resist the devil and watch him run!

Sometimes when we are caught in the middle of a difficult situation, our worldly instincts tell us that we must rely on worldly instincts tell us that we must rely on worldly understanding and worldly solutions.  We try to analyze the problem, instead of immediately turning it over to God.

Always check your circumstances.  Do it in this order:  submit to God, resist the devil, and watch him flee.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today that we are not ignorant of the devil’s devices.  We see him for who he is and what he is doing.  We submit ourselves to You for this day in every circumstance.  And we resist the devil with God’s power that is within us.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-03-29T11:34:31-06:00May 31st, 2021|

We Are Never Alone

Jesus’ disciples slowly began to realize that dealing with fear was going to be an important part of their lives as His followers.  The more time they spent with Him, the more evident it became that He would not always be with them and that it might not be either popular or safe to identify with Him.  Persecution, an unappealing thought, was a frightening possibility.  Jesus tried to help them prepare for what lay ahead and remember that they would not be alone.

No matter how alone we may feel or how frightening a situation we find ourselves in, we can take courage in the fact that Jesus is always with us; we are never alone.

For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5 NKJV).

I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.  (John 14:18 NKJV)

I am with you always, even to the end of the age.  (Matthew 28:20 NKJV)

2021-02-22T09:36:53-07:00May 24th, 2021|

Victory in Every Situation

“Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed” –(James 5:16a NKJV)

There is a small and unusual “hook” in this scripture.  Not only are we to confess our faults “one to another,” but we are to pray “one for another”—that WE might be healed.  God is saying that, by praying for someone else, YOU can be healed!

Here again we see the law of sowing and reaping.  Do you need healing?  Then pray for someone else who needs healing, and watch God heal you.  As you sow healing, you reap healing.

The idea that we should confess our faults to one another is not aimed at squeezing confessions out of people, but rather God wants our faith to be released.  If we have unconfessed sin, our faith is hindered.  God does not want our faith hindered in any area of our lives.

Here is God’s beautiful formula:  if you need healing, confess your faults one to another.  Then pray for someone who needs healing, and expect to be healed yourself.  It will work for whatever need you have.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today for the power and wisdom of Your Word that works in our bodies and minds.

In Jesus’s Name,

2021-02-22T08:28:29-07:00May 17th, 2021|

Use Setbacks as Seeds

When a setback changes the landscape of your life, trust God to bring new life into the situation.

Put everything — yourself, your family, and the crisis — in God’s hands.

Don’t run from the challenge; adjust to and learn from it.

Look for signs of life springing up in the hard soil and realize that, if you will maximize every opportunity to learn and grow, the trial will become the seed of new growth.

In the end, a bad situation can produce a magnificent harvest.

What harvest are you believing for?

2021-02-22T07:39:49-07:00May 10th, 2021|

Jesus Reigns in Us at ALL Times

For in Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28a NKJV)

Several years ago, God opened a door for me to preach in Nigeria.  I knew that men and women would travel many miles from other countries to that convention.  So, I cried out to God for the greatest anointing that I had ever experienced.

Sometimes we may think that God anoints us only in teaching and preaching.  But God’s anointing is available in every situation we encounter.

On the conclusion of our first service, a young woman passed by me.  I knew immediately that she needed ministry.  I confronted her, and she briefly revealed her difficult home situation.  We agreed in prayer for a miracle in her life.

Days later she presented me with a beautifully beaded bracelet.  It was as though the Lord said to me, “Your ministry to this woman will bear fruit in Africa.  When you look at this bracelet, it will remind you of My work in her life.”

Sometimes our greatest ministry takes place on the sidelines.  Remember, Jesus reigns in us at ALL times.  We live, move, and have our being in Him.

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You that we live, move, and have our being in Jesus.  He is guiding and directing every aspect of our lives.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

2021-02-15T07:40:38-07:00May 3rd, 2021|

A Pattern of Blessing

Remember, it is never too late to initiate a pattern of blessing.  It begins with a decision, and it happens in a moment of time.  We are empowered by God’s grace to initiate blessing.

Hear this, because it can transform your life:  we are not doomed to live chaotic, fear-filled lives.  We are not victims; we are victors, people of great value bought with the precious blood of the Lamb.

Jesus said, “I am leaving you with a gift — peace of mind and heart.  And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give.  So, don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27 NLT).

We must speak these words over our lives because the truth of God always nullifies the threats, taunts, and traumatizing words of the devil.  Decide and affirm often:

  • In our home, we choose a gentle tone of voice and godly words to bring encouragement to others and promote a sense of safety and security.
  • Our children speak lovingly, never taunting one another.
  • We praise and encourage our children, balancing constructive criticism with affirmation.
  • Our discipline is based in love and understanding; we do not attempt to change our children’s behavior by issuing threats.
2021-02-08T09:47:27-07:00April 26th, 2021|

Victory in Every Situation

As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.”  (I Peter 4:10 NKJV)

Manifold means “many folds.”  If we fold a piece of fabric and then unfold it, section by section, we would see, in each section, a different part of the pattern—until the whole piece of fabric was unfolded and the complete pattern revealed.

Peter spoke of “manifold temptations” in I Peter 1:6, while I Peter 4:10 speaks of “manifold grace.”  Grace will take care of temptation.  There are different portions of grace of various sizes of temptation.  If you hold up your hand, you will see that you little finger is smaller than your middle finger.  Likewise, there are different sizes of temptations.  Your little finger could represent small temptations, and your middle finger could be tall temptations.

Now look at your other hand, and see it as God’s manifold grace.  He has a little amount of grace to go with a little temptation, and so on.  God has provided just the right amount of grace to match the size of any temptation that we face.  I’m so glad that God has made a way for us to come through every temptation victoriously.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us today to look for the grace to match our temptation.  Thank You that You have given us a way to have victory in every situation.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-02-08T09:13:51-07:00April 19th, 2021|

Living in Abundance

Jesus tells us how-to live-in abundance — we are to take everything He has given us and maximize its potential by putting it to work for good — He promises, “To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance” (Matthew 25:29 NLT).

Paul explains abundance more specifically in terms of sowing and reaping, giving and receiving:

Remember this:  Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. (2 Corinthians 9:6-8 NIV)

Can you see how the power of blessing operates?  Cheerful giving produces harvest, meets needs, generates grace, and increases our ability to perform good works.  Imagine how your quality of life and the quality of your family’s lives are transformed when God makes all grace abound to you!

2021-02-08T08:15:58-07:00April 12th, 2021|

Spend Time on Your Inward & Spiritual Beauty

“Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised” (Proverbs 31:30)

This world puts a great deal of emphasis on our exterior appearance and very little emphasis on the “hidden man of the heart.”

This outward emphasis on looks can be particularly crippling to women.  Not only is a woman judged and valued today for her beauty and attractive appearance, but also there has been an equally strong emphasis on youth—far beyond what is normal.  Thus, many women go on extensive, and possibly damaging diets, or even seek the service of plastic surgeons.

Think how much more valuable it would be to spend the amount of time on one’s inward and spiritual beauty!

Some of the women who are beautifully used in God’s kingdom are not OUTWARDLY glamorous.  But these women are outstanding in their INWARD beauty.

It’s great to LOOK attractive.  But it’s even greater to BE good.  God’s goodness—His soul prosperity—is extended to those who seek His kingdom and righteousness first.  Which is first in your life?  The way you look or the way God looks IN you?

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today for the great work that You are performing in our hearts and lives.  We are daily being conformed to the image of Your Son.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-02-08T07:30:04-07:00April 5th, 2021|

God Loves Generous Hearts

Give, and it will be given to you:  good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom.  For with the same measure that you use it, it will be measured back to you.  (Luke 6:38 NKJV)

We sometimes limit this verse in the church to refer only to the giving and receiving of money or material goods.  In truth, Jesus was referring to all acts that flow from a generous heart:

  • If you give of your time to the church or to those who need your help, your giving will return to you, perhaps in the form of increased productivity in your own endeavors.
  • If you are a loving person, always friendly and quick to encourage other, you will receive more love than you gave out.
  • If you are diligent and always do your best for your employer, you will receive favor and promotion in return.
  • If you pour guidance, wisdom, and love into your children, you will receive the joy of watching them develop and grow strong, do good works, and raise healthy families of their own.

If you truly want to be in the full flow of God’s giving and receiving, give generously.  God loves a generous heart.

2021-01-04T08:29:13-07:00March 29th, 2021|

The Most Powerful Cleansing Agent

“Blows that hurt cleanse away evil” (Proverbs 20:30a NKJV)

Some people worry about the black and blue marks of a bruise, but these marks are actually symptomatic of the healing process.  The blue is the rich oxygen of the arterial blood that brings in new supplies and healing materials of the body’s “first aid” kit.  Then red venal blood carries out the damaged cells, refuse, and waste products.

Have you ever realized that Jesus’ blood also has a twofold healing purpose?  It cleanses us of sin and waste, and it also brings the freshness of His love into our lives.

Christ’s blood is one of the most powerful cleansing agents known to mankind!  His blood does more that whitewash our hearts—it purifies them from the inside out.  Christ’s precious blood purifies our hearts so completely that we become temples of God.

When Jesus was confronted with the wrong-doings of the Pharisees, he warned them, “You are clean on the outside, but your hearts are like the insides of tombs—filled with death.”  What do you want to be?  A tomb of death or a temple of God?

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today for the life of Jesus that flows through us.  We thank You for the dealings of Your Spirit to remove the garbage from our lives; and we thank You for Jesus’ love that brings us freshness.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-01-03T12:24:19-07:00March 22nd, 2021|

Developing a Prayer Life

And God heard the voice of the lad.  Then the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said to her, “What ails you, Hagar?  Fear not, for God has heard the voice of the lad where he is.  Arise, lift up the lad and hold him with your hand, for I will make him a great nation.”  (Genesis 21:17-18 NKJV)

Poor Hagar, the water was about to run out, and she knew death would not be far away.  She couldn’t bear to see her only child die, so she left him under a bush and sat off in the distance, not wanting to witness the inevitable.

But Ishmael had grown up in Abraham’s household.  Ishmael prayed.  God heard, and an angel was assigned to minister to the family.

One of the most important things Christians need to teach their children is how to pray.  Of course, you want to continue to pray for them, but let them develop a prayer life of their own.

I never miss an opportunity to pray with others, especially unbelievers.  When the time comes that they feel the need to call out to God, I want them to feel comfortable turning to Him in prayer.

Do you need the ministry of angels in your current situation?

2021-01-03T11:43:22-07:00March 15th, 2021|

Lead Me to the Rock

“When my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I”  – (Psalm 61:2b NKJV)

When my husband, Wally, was a child, his sister Shirley was burned severely in an accident.  She died a few days later.  Shirley had been the “baby” of the family, and she was very much adored.  My husband’s father became very bitter, and he spoke harshly against the Lord.

But one day Wally’s mother said to her husband “Albert, we cannot afford to be bitter against the Lord.  We need Him too much right now.”

I believe with all my heart that it was the devil who destroyed Shirley’s life.  But she’s in heaven today, and we cannot let the devil destroy us, too, with bitterness down here.  Bitterness is a poison that can seep into all parts of your body and soul.  It can taint the way you view life and the way that you live your life.  Bitterness can multiply and feed upon itself until it overwhelms everything else.

Don’t let bitterness overwhelm you.  Go to the Rock that is higher than you, and let Him remove any bitterness in your situation.

Father,

We thank You that when we feel overwhelmed by circumstances, Your Holy Spirit will lead us to the Rock, Jesus Christ.

In His Name we pray,

Amen.

2020-12-27T12:20:07-07:00March 8th, 2021|

God Is Planning a Family Reunion

The son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you.  I am no longer worthy to be called your son.”  But the father said to his servants, “Quick!  Bring the best robe and put it on him.  Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.  Bring the fattened calf and kill it.  Let’s have a feast and celebrate” – (Luke 15:21-23 NIV)

The story of the lost son is one of the most beloved in the Scriptures.  God is in the business of bringing families together.  Every day parents are fighting over custody of their children.  In many instances’ children must be forcibly taken from abusive situations or from parents who are addicted to drugs or alcohol.  Other families are torn apart by strife, bitterness, and jealously.

Is your family whole, or are you longing for the day when every member will be present at the family reunion?  Is there a son or daughter who seems to have dropped out of sight, as far as your family is concerned?  Why not make a covenant with the Lord to pray each day for the next year for that family member to be reconciled?  God is able to send His holy angels or human messengers along that person’s path with just the right words to turn his or her heart toward home.  The Lord used an angel to bring Peter and Cornelius together, and He can do the same to bring your family together.

And don’t forget, every reunion means a celebration!

2020-12-27T11:44:57-07:00March 1st, 2021|

The Word Produces Good Seed

“He makes peace in your borders, and fills you with the finest wheat” – (Psalm 147:14 NKJV)

God will give us an abundance of revelation knowledge—the good seed out of His Word.  As an adult, I received some of my best advice on studying the Bible from…a TEENAGER!

When our church was small, I was the leader of our teens.  One young man had a tremendous hunger to study God’s Word.  He showed me a small indexed notebook where he wrote the scriptures according to topics.  Whenever people had questions about healing, he would immediately refer to that category.  Many times, he would also jot down special revelations that the Holy Spirit gave him.

At that time, I also taught a small home Bible study.  Sometimes I did not have specific answers to questions.  But with a small indexed notebook such as my student’s, I began keeping scriptures and applying them to specific situations where needed.

I now have many such notebooks on alphabetized topics, Bible characters, and even whole books of the Bible—all supplemented with revelation knowledge.  It is a valuable reference resource that I use to teach the Bible.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us to be consistent and stable in our study of Your Word.  Then You will be consistent and stable in giving us revelation knowledge.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2020-12-07T07:21:31-07:00February 22nd, 2021|

Never Stop Believing

Moses was forty years old when he stood up for who he was a Hebrew man; his actions resulted in his exile.

Moses was eighty years old before he came face-to-face with God at the burning bush, where he decided to follow wherever God might lead him and do whatever God might ask of him.

By faith Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt and toward their land of promise.

Moses’ parents, Amram and Jochebed, very likely did not live to see Moses become the man of faith who led Israel out of its bondage in Egypt.

But that’s real faith—they did not see and then believe.

They believed for what they had not yet seen, and they never stopped believing.

What are you believing for?

2020-12-01T09:29:57-07:00February 15th, 2021|

Build Up or Tear Down

“If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless.” (James 1:26 NKJV)

One day the Lord spoke strongly to me about my tongue.  He told me that I had begun to listen to bits and pieces of gossip about people and then repeated it.  I had developed a critical attitude.  Instead of praying for these people, I was talking about them.

God directed me to scripture in Ezekiel that says the Lord was looking for a man/woman to stand in the gap of the hedge.  God chastised me for becoming a “gap finder,” rather than a “gap stander.”  Then He reminded me about some people with whom I had been very angry.  These people had gossiped and said untrue things about the ministry.  God said, “You reap what you sow.  You have gossiped about others; now others are talking about you.”

I repented deeply and asked the Lord to help me daily with my tongue.  The sins of the tongue are among the most serious that we commit.  The tongue can build up or tear down.  It is so important to ask God for help in bridling our own tongues.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us guard our mouths today.  Check us if we begin to talk or criticize.  Remind us that when we sow gossip or criticism, we also will reap it.  We cannot afford such an expensive harvest.

In Jesus’s Name,

2020-12-01T08:07:41-07:00February 8th, 2021|

Be Prepared to Face the Lions

Then Daniel said to the king, “O king, live forever!  My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you.” (Daniel 6:21-22 NKJV)

Angels are sent to believers to take care of the lions in our lives.  Sometimes we want God to protect us in a time of crisis, but until we repent of sin, we shouldn’t expect supernatural protection.  We can’t live a life of sin and the complain about the lack of supernatural deliverance in our lives.  Daniel was confident of God’s protection because Daniel was in a right relationship with his heavenly Father.

Let me give you a list of things to do NOW to prepare for any future overnight stay in the lion’s den:

  1. Read your Bible before you arrive in the lions’ den.
  2. Have a disciplined prayer time before the lions line up at your door.
  3. Keep your focus on the Word of God during a crisis.
  4. Keep an excellent spirit at all times.
  5. Have faith that the Word will work for you.
  6. Look to God for deliverance.
  7. Give God the glory for your deliverance.
2020-11-30T08:02:22-07:00February 1st, 2021|

How to Receive Your Benefits!

“So, then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” Romans 10:17 (NKJV)

Faith does come by hearing God’ Word.  But many people hear God’s Word and don’t believe it, so they don’t get its benefits.

Do you remember Rahab (Joshua 6)?  She, along with all of Jericho’s inhabitants, had heard about the God of Hebrews.  The people of Jericho all heard the same report; but Rahab alone heard AND BELIEVED.  Not only did she believe in her heart, but she confessed it with her mouth and acted out her faith by hiding the Israelites spies.

Because of Rahab’s willingness to believe what she had heard, she was rewarded beyond her wildest imagination.  When the rest of Jericho was destroyed, the walls of Rahab’s dwelling remained standing—as a testimony to her belief in God’s Word.

We can hear God’s Word continually, but until we believe what we hear and then act on it, it is not profitable to us.

When you hear the Word, don’t just casually receive it in your mind.  Meditate on it.  Accept it and receive it as a special message from God to you.  Then use it to benefit your life.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us to mix our faith with Your Word, to take Your Word and use it in our lives, and to know that it is Your personal message to us.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2020-11-10T07:32:56-07:00January 25th, 2021|

Four “I Wills” for the Dark Night

And I said, “This is my anguish; but I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High.” I will remember the works of the Lord; surely, I will remember Your wonders of old.  I will also meditate on all Your work, and talk of Your deeds.  (Psalm 77:10-12 NKJV)

Like the psalmist, you may be in the middle of a “night” of grief and sorrows, and you may be thinking, “Has His mercy ceased forever (Psalm 77:8)?”  When that happens to you or someone you know, turn to Psalm 77 and contemplate the four “I wills” of verses 10-12:

  • I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High.
  • I will remember the works of the LORD.
  • I will remember Your wonders of old.
  • I will also meditate on all Your work, and talk of Your deeds.

These four steps will lead you to God.  Great comfort and hope can come from meditating on God’s great provision for our lives.

2020-11-09T11:50:44-07:00January 18th, 2021|

You Can’t Look Backward and Forward at the Same Time

“Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead” – (Philippians 3:13 NKJV)

Once we forget the past, we can then reach forth to the things that are ahead.  If we continue to remember the past, it will press against our “present” and keep us from the future that God has for us.  We can’t look backward and forward at the same time.

The Lord tells us that He puts our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.  I’m glad He didn’t say north from south because then we would meet our sins again!  If you start walking south, eventually you’ll reach the south pole, and then you’ll be going north.  North and south can meet each other, but east and west can never meet!  There is no east or west pole.

When God forgives us of our sins, He forgets them.  He never meets them again, and He doesn’t intend for us to meet them either.  Therefore, we leave the past sins behind and look for the future glory.

Don’t let yourself be burdened down with the memory and guilt of past sins.  Christ shed His blood on the cross so that we might no longer be bowed under the weight of all our sins.  Hand them to Him!

Dear Heavenly Father,

We thank You today that we can forget the past.  It cannot exercise power over our present or future.  We reach forth for the things that You have for us today.

2020-11-03T11:44:00-07:00January 11th, 2021|

Worship in Spirit and Truth

“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.  God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” –(John 4:23-24 NKJV)

God has such tremendous blessings for each one of us who love Him, but we need to stay in the right position to receive them.  We need to stay under the downpour of His unlimited blessing.

Being in position to receive from God is directly tied to worshiping Him.

The Bible says we are each called to worship God in spirit and in truth.  In other words, we worship God in our hearts (spirit) and in our actions (truth).

We are called to love God with our hearts, minds, souls, and strength.  We do this by giving thanks and praise to God.

We are also called to love our neighbors as ourselves, which we can do in practical real-world ways.

What are some ways you can love your neighbor?

2020-10-27T08:06:42-06:00January 4th, 2021|

To Live in Prayer is to Live in Power

“Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and He shall hear my voice.” -(Psalm 55:17 NKJV)

It is not unusual for a man, who is committed to prayer, to pray morning, noon, and night.  Daniel made a commitment to pray morning, noon, and night.  In fact, Daniel enemies could only find one fault with him: his extensive prayer life.  That’s really something when the only fault that your enemy can find is your prayer life!  I wonder how many of our enemies could find that “fault” with us?  But such dedication to prayer also brings forth men like Daniel—and David, who wrote Psalm 55:17.  They were mighty and powerful in God.

Sometimes Christians will complain, “I just don’t have time for a lot of prayer.”  Only the devil doesn’t “have time” for prayer.  A dedicated believer will MAKE TIME FOR PRAYER.  Jesus always made time for prayer with His heavenly Father—even in the midst of horrendous crises, such as His impending crucifixion and death.

To live in prayer is to live in power.  Set aside special times—morning, noon, and night—for your prayer life, and watch your circumstances change!

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today let us emphasize prayer in our own personal lives.  We must not look to other people to pray for us.  We are committed to a consistent, personal prayer life.  We look to You to guide us.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2020-10-21T09:52:49-06:00December 28th, 2020|

The Arrival of a Child Brings Heavenly Praise

“For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.  And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” (Luke 2:11-14 NKJV)

I’m persuaded that the birth of every child sets off a chorus of praise in heaven.  It is a happy moment, filled with promise for a new life led in glory to God.

God does not ask you to entrust your children to Him without giving you the all-encompassing hope that He will fulfill your children’s lives in ways that will bring Him the greatest glory and give you and your children the greatest joy.

Take some time to reflect on that truth.  To entrust your child fully to the Lord is to claim, by your faith, that:

  • God loves your child with an everlasting love.
  • God’s purposes for creating your child are going to be fulfilled.
  • Your child’s life is going to count for eternity.
2020-10-21T08:50:52-06:00December 21st, 2020|

Partake & Share of the Fruit

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.  Against such there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22, 23 NKJV)

The fruit of the Spirit is to be very evident in our lives.  When we are born again, we receive the fruits of LOVE, JOY, and PEACE.  These are for our personal enjoyment.  We experience love, joy, and peace.

In addition to these three fruits, there are three more that relate to others:  We need LONGSUFFERING in dealing with other people.  We also need GENTLENESS and GOODNESS.  Thus, not only do we enjoy personal fruit for ourselves, but we can extend His fruit to others.

Lastly, three final fruits deal with our relationship with our heavenly Father.  We give FAITH back to Him, along with MEEKNESS and TEMPERANCE.

Here is a beautiful picture of FRUIT THAT WE OURSELVES CAN ENJOY, FRUIT THAT WE GIVE TO OTHERS, and FRUIT THAT WE MANIFEST TO THE FATHER.  How complete God has made us in Jesus!  If you have Jesus, you have the seed of all nine of these fruits.  Partake of them all.

Dear Heavenly Father,

No law can win against love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance—the supernatural traits of Jesus Christ.  Thank You, Father, that these abide in us in our new birth.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2021-01-20T09:32:53-07:00December 14th, 2020|

The Power of a Joyful Attitude

May those who fear you rejoice when they see me, for I have put my hope in your word.

(Psalm 119:74 NIV)

When a man of God receives grace for himself, he becomes a blessing to others.  Hopeful people bring gladness wherever they go.

What do you bring to your friends and family?  Do you remind them of all the bad things that have happened or might happen?  Do you give them a catalog of your aches and pains?  If your conversations are full of complaints, worries, and problems, then you are not testifying for God; you are testifying for the devil.

Your attitude alone can be a testimony to the gifts of God.  You have been forgiven!  You are assured of eternal life!  Considering the magnitude of these gifts, what do you have to complain about?

Reflect your joy and gratitude in every situation — you will be a blessing to your friends and family and, most of all, to God.

2020-10-21T07:59:33-06:00December 7th, 2020|

Repentance Brings Refreshing

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord”- (Acts 3:19 NKJV)

Repentance brings refreshing.  I was 19 years old when my mother received the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  I was very “turned off” with both her experience and her Spirit-filled friends.  For four years she prayed for me and witnessed to me about the Holy Spirit baptism.  Finally, I met my husband-to-be, who was Spirit-filled.  God had begun to work on my heart.

I spent one entire night in repentance for rejecting such a wonderful gift of God, and I promised that I would participate in the next all-night prayer meeting that our church held.  Within four days I had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  After my repentance came one of the greatest refreshings I had experienced.

The major things that we need in our lives often come only after we have truly repented.  Then God can send a refreshing peace to us that truly “passes all understanding.”

Dear Heavenly Father,

Today let us repent of those areas where we have blocked Your flow of refreshing to our lives.  Help us not to examine others, but to examine ourselves.

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2020-10-21T07:36:57-06:00November 30th, 2020|

The Power of Thanksgiving

“Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise.” (Psalm 100:4 NKJV)

God has often dealt with me about the act of thanksgiving.  There is power in the giving of thanks.  In the Old Testament there was a special offering just for thanksgiving.  The New Testament says that when we pray, we are to do so with thanksgiving.  We are to thank God for our food.  Then our blessings will be sanctified and set apart for us.

Thanksgiving is like yeast:  Thanksgiving causes your requests to rise with faith into the presence of God, just as yeast causes bread to rise.  The Word teaches that if you are not thankful for the things that God does, He will take away what He has given you.

Of the ten lepers, nine never gave thanks to Jesus.  Only one returned to thank Him.  I believe that because that one leper gave thanks, he received SPIRITUAL wholeness, as well as PHYSICAL wholeness.  Thanksgiving also will help you to be whole—physical, emotionally, and spiritually.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Help us to live in an attitude of thanksgiving.  When we give You our praise and thanks, we know that You will bless us in body, soul and Spirit.  Thank You for all the good things that You do. 

In Jesus’s Name,

Amen.

2020-09-28T10:11:34-06:00November 23rd, 2020|

A Psalm of Praise

Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands!

Serve the Lord with gladness; come before His presence with singing.

Know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture.

Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise.  Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. (Psalm 100:1-4 NKJV)

Within two stanzas of this psalm, we are admonished to praise and worship the Lord, and we are given good reasons for doing so!  We are told to make a joyful shout and to be thankful.  Why?  Because, It is He who has made us.

God is your heavenly Father, and He delights in providing for your every need.

Exercise “childlike” faith in God’s goodness; you’ll be amazed at how easy it is to praise and thank Him!

2020-09-28T10:00:57-06:00November 16th, 2020|

How Your Praise in Troubled Times Helps Others

But a midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.  (Acts 16:25 NKJV)

You’ve heard the expression “misery loves company.”  When Paul and Silas found themselves unfairly imprisoned in a Philippian jail, they didn’t spend their jail time coming up with a defense or complaining about being falsely accused.  Their instinct was to pray and sing hymns to God.

The other prisoners were listening to them.

In this verse, the Greek word for “listening” includes the idea of listening “with pleasure.”

Everyone jailed with Paul and Silas benefited from their response to a terrible circumstance.

When we find ourselves in miserable situations, let’s use the time to glorify God and edify those around us.

Take a look at Acts 16:26 (the very next verse), and see what happens when we do.

2020-09-28T09:52:09-06:00November 9th, 2020|
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