Surprised Party

18 Oct

Be honest. Have you ever prayed and was amazed when Jesus showed up? I’ll share an experience that left me as the surprised party, though I invited the Master.

The plane was filled to capacity. Despite the dark skies and pouring rain, we boarded – only to sit on the tarmac for hours.

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A male in his late twenties to early thirties sat in front of me. Across from him sat a young lady who thought he was prince charming. Her smile glistened through her eyes, making up for her mask covered lips.

She asked question after question about his failed marriage. He answered without hesitation, sharing details that one might normally keep from a stranger.

I could see her bare legs and arms. I was certain shorts were there though they weren’t visible. I heard every word of their conversation. Listening reminded me to pray, not only for them, but for everyone on board.

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After praying, I noticed a difference in her tone. She became serious. She began to speak about God! Yes, I was surprised! Jesus accepted the invitation (prayer) to come! I relaxed again and looked over at the passenger next to me and noticed that he was reading a devotional.

When we pray Your kingdom come, your will be done, expect Jesus to show up!

Let’s not get caught up in being judgmental and self righteous and miss an opportunity to see Jesus move. Pray that His kingdom come and His will be done on a plane, on a train, in the supermarket, and expect things to change, no matter what it looks like. Extend the invitation. Don’t be surprised when Jesus comes!

Exchanging Ghosts

12 Mar

Have you ever been haunted by your past? I have. The ghost wasn’t spooky, but it was downright ugly!

The ghost of condemnation is one of the worst companions a human can have. You never leave you, and the trouble is, the accusations are at least in part, true.

I was ashamed of my past. I knew of Jesus from an early age but chose a different path. As an adult, I allowed me and Satan to remind me of a series of bad decisions that left me broken and used.

Finally, I allowed another ghost to come in and clean me up! The issue then was that the ghost was Holy. My belief system battled with The Holy Ghost even more so than with the ghost of condemnation. (Romans 8:1,7)

The Holy Ghost refused to quit and began to demolish every stronghold with holiness, righteousness, humility, truth, and purity. I slowly became a recipient of grace, trading my story for God’s glory! (Romans 8:15 for you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear but you have received the spirit of adoption, whereby we cry ABBA father.)

I’m super encouraged by the stories of others who have done the same. Just read Matthew 1. The lineage of Jesus Christ, The Son of David, an adulterer and murderer, Son of Abraham a liar, and includes Tamar who tricked her father-in-law and had twins by him, Rahab, the harlot, and me! The Holy Ghost extends an open invitation to you.

So what about you? Have you submitted to The Holy Ghost and allowed Him to exchange your story for God’s glory? It’s not too late if you have breath. It is as simple as repenting, accepting Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection and allowing The Holy Ghost to overtake the ghost of condemnation. The HOLY Ghost will become your constant companion, renewing your mind, causing you to be free of condemnation and even make you Holy.

No longer will you worry about your past. You’ll war for your future. Allow The Holy Ghost to re-write your story for God’s glory!

Live Love

12 Apr

We toss the word LOVE like a ball to be juggled

Totally forgetting the pain and the struggle “Not my will but Thine”

The price that was paid for LOVE

How could Jesus bear your sin and mine

The sin of the world in one moment of time

Is it any wonder that his sweat was like blood for LOVE

His perfect being took on humanity

Our lust pride and selfishness to every degree

And we

Could hardly bear each other for a moment in time

Let’s reflect this day on the reality of LOVE

LOVE- Patient kind humble pure

Selfless sacrificial

The kind of LOVE that Jesus died to demonstrate

For you, me, for the world

He died to set us free to live victoriously

As we celebrate Resurrection Day let’s LIVE LOVE

We toss the word LOVE like a ball to be juggled

Totally forgetting the pain and the struggle “Not my will but Thine”

The price that was paid for LOVE

Our God is Greater

18 Mar

While driving yesterday with my four year old grandson, I asked what song he’d like to listen to assuming he would choose a kid’s song about ABC’s etc. Instead, he surprised me by asking to hear the song “Our God is Greater” (by Chris Tomlin).

I searched YouTube on my phone, connected the cable to my radio and the song played, but only for a moment. I pulled over to check out my phone and found YouTube circling, but going nowhere.

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In disappointment, I decided that we still needed music and turned on the car radio. My ears laughed when I heard “Our God is Greater” playing. I was in shock. Although I was driving I looked at my phone just to make sure of what happened. Indeed the phone was silent and disconnected from the car.

Did that just happen?

Wow! Our God is Greater! Now I don’t know the particulars of what you might be facing today, but I do know this – God is Greater than coronavirus, all disease, poverty, abuse, depression, addiction..- you name it! HE IS GREATER! Call out to Him today and keep your ears open and you will be just as amazed as I am by HOW GREAT GOD IS!

The Power of One

10 Mar

It’s easy to look at the impact other Christians are making in the world and wonder whether our small acts of service and love are really making a difference. A recent encounter reminded me not to be overly concerned about the masses, when I have the power of touching one life at a time.

After work, I stopped by one of my favorite restaurants to pick up a meal. I wasn’t feeling as well as I’d like that day and casually greeted the cashier as I paid. Usually, I try to express genuine interest in the people I encounter, but I just wasn’t up to it.

The cashier’s face lit up when she recognized me. Her warm greeting reminded me of the need to check out of my feelings and focus upon the given opportunity to be a blessing.  

The Bible records several stories of Jesus’ one on one encounters. Though He spoke to the masses, He literally took time out to hear and speak with people, making each encounter important. 

Jesus illustrates the power of one in Matthew 18: 12-14  12 “What do you think? If any man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go and search for the one that is straying? 13 If it turns out that he finds it, truly I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine which have not gone astray. 14 So it is not the will [a]of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones perish.

Can you hear Jesus saying to His followers today – What about the person I sent your way who needed an ear, but all you could think about was you? What about the one I sent your way for an answer that you didn’t bother to give because you thought they wouldn’t listen. Be alert for the possibilities of miracles that I desire to do through you one person at a time.

As ambassadors for Christ, daily we are presented with opportunities to make a difference in the lives of the people we encounter. Don’t take those moments for granted. Instead, sharpen your spiritual antennas through prayer, the Bible, and through praise/worship and watch out. Be ready to make a difference, one person at a time.

Become As Little Children!

27 Jan

I embarked upon a new adventure! This fall I spent time with both of my 3-year-old grandsons without their parents. There are a few things that stand out from that day.

On our way to pick up Jaxen, Ethan and I sped down the sidewalk. I ran cautiously, but Ethan ran freely, absent of fear. Ethan’s shoe flew off, causing him to fall. After his shoe was on again, we continued, not a tear in sight.

*Run without fear! If your shoe slips off, put it on and keep going. Don’t stop running!

Isaiah 40:31 – But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint.

On that chilly sunny day, Ethan looked up and said, “Look grandma, there’s the moon”. I hadn’t noticed.

*Even on sunny days, signs of night appear. Be aware of darkness but keep focused on the Son.

Psalm 16:8 – I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

Both of my grandsons’ love music. They sing their own songs as well as songs they’ve heard. They happily go about their business singing and playing

.*Sing your song! Not only will it brighten your day, you may just bless someone else.

Psalm 96:1 Sing to the Lord a new song. Sing to the Lord all the earth.

As I hurried to get the boys inside on that cold day, Jaxen asked, “Grandma, can we stop and smell the flowers?” How could I resist such a simple but delightful request? We stopped, and Jaxen smelled the flowers.

*Tomorrow is not promised, stop, and enjoy the Lord’s blessings today, remembering that all of our help comes from Him!

James 4:13-14 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.

And of course, although it was a sunny day, believe it or not – we saw a rainbow just as we were ending our time together.

*Always remember God’s promises. Don’t wait for the rain, rainbows appear on sunny days. Sometimes you just have to look for them.

I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Genesis 9:13

Matthew 18:2-4 New International Version (NIV)

He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

Thanks As You Go…

20 Nov

Did you ever receive a word from the Lord and wondered where it went as time passed? I have.

I made efforts to do my part, to no avail. Nothing much happened. The promise did not manifest.

The Bible states that faith without works is dead. But what happens when you have faith, do your part, and still don’t see the results?

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I’ve come to the conclusion that gratitude is a necessary element that supports the promise, along with faith and works.

Without a thankful heart, it’s possible to lose the promise altogether.

Gratitude feeds faith!

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Ingratitude chips away at faith, minimizing the powerful miracles the Lord has already performed, blocking one’s ability to see the supernatural possibility of greater things to come. Remember, faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things NOT SEEN.

Luke 17 renders a story of Jesus requesting that 10 lepers exercise faith and works. They called out to Jesus for mercy. In response, Jesus answered “Go show yourselves to the priests”. As they went, they were cleansed.

Jesus could have healed the men on the spot, but didn’t. He can provide your promise on the spot but hasn’t. Perhaps that’s because it’s all about Him receiving all the glory in the way He chooses.

One leper, filled with gratitude after his deliverance returned, giving thanks and glory to God.

What if you rose above the one leper and began to be thankful, before you see the promise?

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Gratitude “as you go”, will surely give God glory and honor now as well as later!

Remember the children of Israel took a 40 year journey that was literally only an eleven day trip. Their doubting, complaining spirits cancelled the promise, causing many of them to die in the wilderness.

Stay on the right path, doing your part in faith and gratitude. Don’t die in the wilderness as you wait for the promise. Give God glory and thanks now and forever as you go!

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Need Help With That?

28 Sep

Coming Out!

14 Sep

Coming Out!

14 Sep

Have you been hiding out, covered by self-debasing thoughts about what you can’t do? Have you been basking in failures of the past, allowing yesterday to hold you back from your today?

I’ve got good news for you. It’s time to let go of past failures, let go of what this person said, and what that person did. It’s time for you to come out of hiding, get up and get going. Not only are you a gift, you have gifts to share.

The world is waiting for you to arise and shine. You’ve looked around and are aware of the mess the world is in. But have you considered that you are an answer to some of what you see?

It’s time for a self-assessment. What have you been hiding that the world is in need of. What are you passionate about? How can you contribute to the betterment of the Body of Christ and society at large, using your gifts?

Maybe you don’t know what your gifts are. Pray, asking the Lord to reveal what He has given you to share with others. Also, ask trusted family members and friends to help you as you self-assess.

God created you with purpose. His mercies are new today. (Lam.3:22-23). God is not binding you with chains from yesterday. His word tells us that He sent His Son Jesus to the cross for our sins, where He led captivity captive and gave gifts to us. (Ephe.4:8)

Get into the word of God and seek Him as your priority. Read about the gifts given to believers in 1 Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4. As you discover your gifts, take courage and use them for the glory of God and for the good of mankind. It’s time! Come out and get going!

“Arise, shine; for your light has come,
And the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
“For behold, darkness will cover the earth
And deep darkness the peoples;
But the Lord will rise upon you
And His glory will appear upon you.
“Nations will come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising.

Isaiah 60: 1-3