Saturday, September 29, 2012

Don't Be Selfish

On our way home the other night we passed by a man with a homeless sign. We didn't have any money to give so we gave him a tract.

The following night we passed back by the same man. Instead of just going home we stopped. My husband spoke with the man and shared the Gospel with him.

This past week we've been attending a missions conference at our church. And this is exactly what it's about! Taking the time to talk to people and tell them about our Savior. It would of been easier to just go home. But instead the girls and I sat in the car waiting. Not knowing how long it would take, but knowing that no matter the out come God could use it for His glory.

YHVH could of called us home the moment we got saved, but He didn't. There are still so many more that need to hear about how good He is and what He came to earth to do for us! We're so accustomed to having everything for ourselves. We don't even realize how incredibly selfish it is to hear the Gospel over and over again, while many have never heard it even once.

I challenge you to pray and ask God who He'd have to share His word with. Then aim to share the Gospel more times in a week than you hear it.

...Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. -Mark 16:15

*In case you were wondering the man didn't get saved, but we've continued to check up on him and tell him of God's love.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Creating Traditions

The time leading up to Yom Teruah {or Rosh Hashanah} is a time of reflection. We want to make sure that our children are sensing the importance of this time and that we are constantly pointing them back to our Heavenly Father. So this year we've decided to take on the Jewish tradition of Tashlich {or casting off}.

This is done by casting small pieces of bread, representing our sins,  into a body of water. We also incorporated a teaching about sin and repentance. My husband read verses about sin and how we all sin, then verses about not covering up our sins. 

Our girls are so young there's no telling if it will have made any impact, but as they grow up we'd like to continue to do this and really take some time to pray with them about different sins they may be struggling with. 

Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.  He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old. -Micah 7:18-20

Thursday, September 13, 2012

A Word Fitly Spoken

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Have you ever needed to talk, but not realize it? That happened to me the other day, and the Lord orchestrated it so perfectly. As the conversation progressed it some how made it to a place where things were just bubbling beneath the surface. 

My words spilled out like a stream, and I was unable to take any of them back, but this newly found friend just listened. I didn't say anything that shouldn't of been said, but I was pouring out my feelings and sort of discovering how I felt at the same time. 

Then it happened. In the mist of my apologizing for dumping my emotions out on this unsuspecting person, she spoke the words my heart needed to hear. It was as she had ministered directly to my soul without even realizing the impact of her words. 

It was an ordained meeting, and I know because of how it all came together. Everything fitting together perfectly in a way that only an all knowing and loving Abba could of made happen. 

It was a something I needed and didn't even know. Makes me want to be very careful about not listening to YHVH's promptings. Who knows when it will be my turn to minister to someones soul, and provide an apple of gold in a picture of silver....

 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. Proverbs 25:11

Monday, September 10, 2012

No Sorrow With It

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This morning in my quiet time I was reading Proverbs 10, and verse 22 struck me: "The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it." 

How often do we as wives and mothers sell ourselves short? How often do we end the day feeling as though we've accomplished nothing, even though our children and husband are fed and happy? There is a lie being spread that too many of us {myself included} have bought into. 

It's time that we STOP! Being a wife and/or mother is a blessing, and the Lord addeth NO sorrow with it. No sorrow doesn't mean some sorrow, it means NO SORROW! None. The dirty dishes, the moments for training, the laundry, the cooking, the sweeping, they all make you rich. You are richly blessed by the Lord!

Don't believe the lie for even one more day! And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. -John 8:32. Be free, choose joy, I know I am. 

At the start of this morning I felt so run down. I was tired, and was looking at everything I had to do as a burden, or something keeping me from getting my much needed sleep. But then after a cup of green tea and stealing away to spend time with my Lord I was able to see the truth. He has richly blessed me, and there is no sorrow with it. 

Today look around and see how the Lord has richly blessed you, and when it gets hard {because it will!} remind yourself that, He addeth no sorrow with it


Thursday, September 6, 2012

A Call To Righteousness {part 2}

As we saw in part 1, Elul is the month that we prepare ourselves. While of course we can get closer to God at anytime there is always room for improvement and we can all stand to get closer to our Abba. So why not do it now?

In the first 7 chapters of Nehemiah the people began rebuilding a wall to protect themselves from the heathens around them. Let's now examine the next 6 chapters to see how they got right with God after the wall was complete. 

First, the people learned God's commands. Nehemiah 8:1-8 talks about how Ezra read the book of the law {Leviticus} and how the levites {in v. 7} "caused the people to understand the law". We can apply that to our own lives by taking the time time to read God's law. People are often quick to say that they are not under the law because of salvation is Yeshua {Jesus} and while yes we are free from the punishment of not keeping the law, that doesn't mean the law is not still pleasing to YHVH. 

See the law has never been what gave salvation. Salvation has ALWAYS BEEN by grace through faith. Those saints that made it to Heaven from before Jesus came, got there because of their trust, and faith, in God {see Hebrews 11}. It was not through the perfect keeping of the law. They couldn't even keep the law perfectly, that's why they had to do sacrifices. So the law was never for salvation but always to create a holy people. God has always said "Be ye holy, for I am holy" {1 Peter 1:16} that has always been His desire. To have a people that are holy, or set apart, for Himself. So that still applies to us, He still wants us to be holy! Would you commit to read through the Scriptures and ask the LORD to show you what He desires from you? I'm not suggesting that you make a list of rules and begin trying to keep them all in your own flesh. YOU CAN'T! But what you can do is seek out His will on this matter for your life. 

Secondly, the people began keeping His feats. You can't come before our Holy God, looking for His presence, and not be moved to do something. You just can't. He is holy and we are not, therefore we will want to change after having a real encounter with Him. So after they understood the law, they began keeping His set apart Holy Days {8:9-18}. They started with what they could. 

Thirdly, the people confessed their sins {9:1-4}. This step is one that will need to be repeated over and over again. Once you know God's laws you should be convicted of your sin. See the law should not puff us up and make us think "oh yea I got this". It should bring you to your knees, with a humble heart! All those laws that you haven't kept, all the sins that you have committed, Jesus took that on. He took on the sins of the ENTIRE WORLD to be separated for the very first time EVER from YHVH. He did that FOR YOU! If that doesn't move you to repentance, then I don't know what to tell you. 

Fourthly, the people committed to be set-apart followers of YHVH {10:28-39}. Making such a  commitment doesn't mean you'll be perfect. It just means you are asking for the Ruach HaKodesh {Holy Spirit} to guide you and help you to honor God in all things. 

Fifthly, the people cleansed themselves from the world {13:1-9}. Now it came to pass, when they had heard the law, that they separated from Israel all the mixed multitude. {v.3} As followers of God we are called to be separate from the world. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.-2 Corinthians 6:17 

That means that we are not to look and act like the world, but rather act like children of El Elyon {the Most High God}. We shouldn't be so wrapped up in the things of this world that we neglect the things of God!

Lastly, the people committed not to inner-marry {13:23-30}. If you've ever heard the term "unequally yolked" you know exactly what I'm talking about; children of God marrying unbelievers. If you've ever been a believer, while your spouse was an unbeliever, then you know the pain of being unequally yolked. Our Abba in His infinite wisdom commanded us not to intermarry so that we can avoid the many hardship that come with it.  Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? - 2 Corinthians6:14

These six steps are an excellent starting place to seeking the Lord on the issue of personal righteousness. Especially now that we are getting very close to the fall chagim {holidays}. Don't wait, seek the Lord and see what He has in store for you. 
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. -Matthew 5:6

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Call To Righteousness {part 1}

Lately in my quiet time with the Lord I've been seeing how we are called to have personal righteousness. I know that if you're saved you know about imputed righteousness. Because that's what happens when we accept Jesus as our Savior. His righteousness get's imputed on to us. But that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about our own personal pursuit of righteousness. 

The Lord has really been pressing this topic into my heart. It seems everyday He makes a verse about righteousness shine as I'm spending time with Him in His Word. For me this is increasingly significant as this is the hebrew month of Elul. This month is an important one as it is the month where much time is spent gearing up for the High Holidays of Yom Teruah (commonly called Rosh Hashanna) and Yom Kippur. {See lev 23:24-32 for more details}

The month of Elul is a time where we are reminded of what is important and we begin making teshuvah (turning back to God; repentance). Which leads us towards seeking to live a life that is pleasing to our Heavenly Father. We can see a picture of this in the book of Nehemiah. Let me give a very quick overview of the first few chapters in the book of Nehemiah:

Hanani came to Nehemiah with some other men of Judah, and Nehemiah asked them about the Jews that had escaped captivity. Their report was not good. So Nehemiah wept and prayed to God for the children of Israel, confessing his sins and their sins. Then, skipping ahead some, Nehemiah received a blessing from the king to go unto Judah and rebuild the wall of the city. Everyone pitched in and rebuilt the wall of the city. Then in chapter 6 verse 15 it says: So the wall was finished in the twenty and fifth day of the month Elul, in fifty and two days.

As you see the wall was completed near the end of Elul. So while they didn't start during Elul they did spend most of the month preparing. After the wall was finished God put it on Nehemiah's heart to get everyone gathered by their families. Once everyone was gathered Ezra the priest came and read the book of the law to everyone on the first day of the seventh month {Neh 8:2}, which is Yom Teruah! That was the beginning of Judah turning back to the ways of the Lord after their captivity. 

What an awesome picture of how we can turn back to YHVH after our captivity in sin! The rest of Nehemiah covers just how the people turned their hearts back to God and how they got their hearts right with the Father. There is so much to be learned about personal righteousness in this short book of only 13 chapters! I'm late with writing about Elul since it's almost over but it's not too late for teshuva. 
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. -2 Chronicles 7:14

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Being Momma

Lately  I've  felt like I wasn't giving my children enough. I know that sounds crazy since I'm a stay at home mom, but it's true. I found myself trying to just get through the day so I could have some peace and quiet. It seemed like the days were just rolling into each other and all I had was my quiet time after dinner when the kids were in bed. Maybe it was the training night shift my hubby was working, or maybe it was my attitude. But either way I had to take it to the Lord.

I started praying for the Lord to give me a love for my children like He has for them. One that doesn't grow tired of the noise or the needs. I cried out for Him to help me love them the way they needed to be loved.

Then it happened. During our dinner prayer I felt for the first time the little hand I was holding. I've held that same little hand at so many dinners. But that night it felt different. It was like I was holding her hand but she was holding my heart. All I could say was thank you God.

I thought I was doing a good job! But one night on my knees changed me. Suddenly every hug was important, every kiss worth more than gold. I finally saw my children as more than souls to be trained. They're also people to be enjoyed. I used to beat myself up when my children misbehaved, now I'm able to give us both grace.

That simple prayer changed my entire perspective, and opened my eyes to what I was missing. I'm finally in a place where I can s-l-o-w-d-o-w-n. I've spent this week  truly enjoying my children. And it was great!

Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. Psalm 37:4-5

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