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Casting Stones Through A Different Lens

22 Apr

pebbles, rocks, shapes

You’ve heard the story of the adulterous woman before. But for just a moment, take a second look. You’ll see stone casting through a different lens.

It was early morning. People gathered in the temple to hear Jesus teach. The lesson began. In came scribes and Pharisees with a woman taken in the act of adultery. The men had a plan and probably thought to themselves, we’ll stone two people in one setting. We can trap Jesus with His own words, stoning His character, and simultaneously publicly stone this adulterous woman because of her sin.

Let’s focus on hitting Jesus first. “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do You say? (John 8:4-5 NIV). They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing Him(6).”

Instead of throwing the stone back at the scribes and the Pharisees, Jesus caught the stone and was probably thrilled. This was great timing! What might have been seen as an interruption during a teaching session had actually provided an awesome opportunity to demonstrate a lesson to the students using these men, this woman, and stones.

Jesus began to write on the ground, ignoring the men’s question. What do you have to say about this Jesus? The accusers wanted an answer and repeated the question until Jesus spoke. Jesus invited the accusers to now stone the woman. “Let anyone of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her”. Again, Jesus stooped down to write.

““And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.”‭‭(John‬ ‭8:9-11‬ ‭KJV‬‬)

Here’s the new angle! Think of the stones that have been coming your way lately. What are the hard things being thrown at you? Follow the Leader. Jesus was not moved by the accusers. He used the stones to demonstrate love, kindness and forgiveness. How can you use the stones that have been coming your way? Instead of retaliating or becoming fearful, seize the stones. Demonstrate great love, great faith, great forgiveness, and that you serve a Great Lord who fights for you!
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. ”‭(2 Corinthians‬ ‭10:4‬ ‭KJV‬‬)

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Opposition Plus Prayer Equals Change

7 Aug
Few of us actually like the challenge of being opposed. 
Nevertheless, there are some benefits of dealing with 
opposition that we may tend to overlook. One of the benefits 
is that we get to know a bit more about ourselves and our
faith. Opposition also provides us with an opportunity to
know more about the Lord and how He works. Lastly, we
might be changed for the better!

Recently, I was in a situation in which I had to interact 
constantly with someone who seemed to be looking for ways
to oppose me and to find errors in what I said or did. Initially, 
I was discouraged and dreaded being in that persons 
presence.

I was prompted to pray more for myself, and I prayed for
the individual. I needed to forgive the person, and
stop focusing upon their negative behaviors towards me. 
As I prayed, the strife that had managed to settle within me 
began to dissipate and my perspective changed. My peace 
was restored. God enabled me to begin to treat the person 
as though they were kind and caring as I prayed for them 
and for myself.

Not long ago, someone else became angry with this person 
who had time and again opposed me. My first natural thought 
was not good. However, when I opened my mouth to speak, 
positive words of peace came forth. The Lord actually used 
me to help bring peace between the two individuals.

This entire scenario reminds me of the scripture that 
instructs us to “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything
by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your
requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, 
which surpasses all understanding, will guard your
hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:6-7‬ ‭NKJV‬‬. 

My anxious thoughts had led me to a place of unrest. But 
when I began to really press in through prayer, the peace 
of God was once again, mine. This peace did
surpass my own understanding as I was used to assist 
the person, who for a time, was my opponent. When 
through the power of prayer, I no longer saw this person
as an enemy, their behavior improved, and so did mine. 

Are you experiencing any strife in your life. Begin to pray 
differently. Release Your anxiety through prayer. Pray for
blessings upon the life of your opponent and see if the Lord
won't change the situation, and change you during the 
process! (Matthew 5:43-48)

To Our Father!

21 Jun
Our Father who art in heaven
Hallowed be Your great name
The
name that You are not ashamed 
To associate with us
With me 
Though I have
not been all that I should be
Daily you give us victory
Over sin over
shame
Eradicating guilt by Your great name
You gave us Your Son
Our souls to
save
Jesus, the name above all
A new way made 
For us
If we'd only believe
and receive
New destiny, new destiny
More life now
And then eternally
You are
the best Father 
Everlasting is Your name 
Always loving, not ashamed
To call
us Your own
And on this day 
All praise to You 
Happy Father's
Day

Commitment Failure – Commitment Sucess

18 May

Recently, I was extraordinarily disappointed because someone that
I work with made a commitment to me but failed to keep it.
Actually, I was beyond disappointment. I was angry.

A great opportunity arose for me to assist this person.
I did help them, however, in my anger, I began to have vengeful
thoughts. I had to repeatedly remind myself that
vengeance is the Lords, not mine ( Romans 12:19).

When speaking with a friend regarding this person’ s
wrong doing, I was surprised when she began to focus
more upon my response than what had happened. I then
accepted the reality that although the Lord of
justice is concerned when we are mistreated, He is
just as concerned, or maybe even more so, with our hearts.

You see, although I was disappointed and angry due to
someone else’s failure to keep a commitment to me,
the Lord is more concerned that I keep my commitment to
Him. And just what is that commitment? My commitment to
Him includes trusting Him, come what may and
remaining focused upon Him and not my circumstances.
It also includes the ability to be angry, but not allow
that anger to cause me to sin (Ephesians 4:26). And, it
includes forgiving those who trespass against me.

The best example that I could possibly find of a similar
situation is found in 1 Peter 2:23. That scripture states
that “when Jesus was reviled, did not revile in
return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but
COMMITTED HIMSELF to Him that judges righteously”. Yes
people will fail in their commitments to us. But like
Jesus, we achieve COMMITMENT success when, no matter
comes our way, we commit ourselves to the Lord God.