Pray The Psalms With Me, Psalm 3

This Psalm is addressing hopelessness. Hopelessness is a state of mind. We have to choose to have hope. Psalm 3 helps remind us what we should be doing to have hope and remain in hope when we are in trouble or are feeling fearful. We must remember our salvation. God saved us! If we meditate on how God saved us we are hopeful that He will save us from whatever trouble we are in now. How awesome it is that we have a God who saves us! Fear is the opposite of love. When we are in fear we are out of love. We aren’t remembering God’s love for us. Remember God loves you, so have faith and trust in Him. God hears our prayers and He answers in His way and in His timing. He will not leave us or forsake us. We can rest in peace knowing God is with us and protects us. People can’t scare us because we know who we belong to. We declare victory over our enemies and Satan. He has no power over us unless we give it to him. Being hopeless is a way he can get in. Close the door on hopelessness and open the door to Jesus, the one who never leaves us, He is our hope! Choose to focus on Jesus!

Prayer

Thank you for the promise that You will never leave us alone! Thank you for hearing our prayers and answering us when we call on Your name. You are a great loving Father to us, Your children. One day we will be with You in heaven and we will know You fully. I can’t wait for that day! Until then thank you for Your Holy Spirit leading us and guiding us and for the hope we have in Jesus! Amen.

Pray The Psalms With Me, Psalm 2

Psalm 2 has 12 verses. It’s all about what I should do as a follower. I made confession statements that say I WILL do these things. This isn’t going to be in exact order of the verses 1-12 but it’s an interpretation of them as a whole. I feel that they spoke to me from God and this is my response back to Him.

I belong to Jesus first of all. Anyone who is a believer belongs to Him because God gave Jesus the earth and everything in it. I know I’m His. And knowing that I’m His there are certain things that I should want to do for Him because I love Him. What I’m writing is for anyone not just me but I will write it as for myself. You know that this applies to you as well. First I will serve Jesus with all my heart and make Him King of my heart. That means He comes first. There is no thing, person or activity that gives me more pleasure than being in His presence. He fills me up with His Holy Spirit and then I can do life so much better. As I make Jesus first in my heart I will remember Him in all my circumstances so that I can make wise decisions and wise choices. He keeps me on track. I will be pleasing to God. We should want to be God pleasers and not people pleasers. When we are following what the Holy Spirit has directed us to do we are pleasing God. I have an example of what it means to follow the Holy Spirit. I was walking in the parking lot of Target one day. I passed a young mom who just buckled in her baby but still had her buggy to put away. As I passed her I heard the Holy Spirit say, go back and ask to take her buggy so she can just get in the car with her baby. Remember what it was like when you were there? So, I turned around and asked if she would like me to take her buggy and she said yes, thank you! I felt good inside for helping her and I knew I was doing what God wanted me to do. This leads into the next thing we should be doing and that is surrendering our lives to God on a daily basis.I will surrender my life to God so He can be glorified. As witnesses for Jesus we should also be declaring Jesus is the Son of God and stand up for Him! When I find myself in situations where Jesus is brought up I will speak up for Him and not be silent! But we do so in a way that keeps the peace. I will  be a peacemaker. As I continually focus on Jesus, this practice actually keeps evil away.  When our minds are absorbed with what the Bible says about us and about our lives, evil has no way of gaining a foothold in our minds. That’s where evil starts messing with us, in our minds. If evil can get in our thinking then you give him permission to set up camp there and he will destroy your life, eventually, if he is allowed to stay there. You are the only one who has control over what your meditating on. I will choose Jesus! As believers we should have reverential fear and awe of God. When we have this heart attitude we will rejoice and be high in spirits! We will be high on life, on Jesus! This enables us to want to seek and trust Him more!

Prayer

Thank you Father for this insight! Thank you that in Your Word are the answers to the questions we seek! I praise You, honor You and glorify Your name on this earth so others who don’t know You will want to know You. You are good and I’m thankful I live under Your wing. Amen.

 

Run This One Race Marvelously

I have been going through some internal struggles lately, how about you? I think when we set out on this path and walk with Jesus we are going to have bumps in the road. These bumps are there to learn from I’m gathering. I overwhelmed myself with reading too much, wanting to know more about Jesus. I wasn’t remembering anything I was reading so I stopped altogether and took a break.

I realized the past 4 weeks from taking myself away from the things of God that made me feel connected to Him, that these things are really what I need. I expressed to my mom how when I got saved I felt driven to read the Bible, sing songs, watch movies about Jesus and anything else that would present itself to make me feel closer to God. And of course writing this blog. I never could understand why other people who say they are saved don’t feel like I do. Why they don’t pursue God the way I have. Then again no one really knows what other people do in private, right? Only God knows. Only God knows the heart.  I thought  I could stop what I do and be like everyone else. I convinced myself that it really didn’t matter. But without it I feel like I’m wasting my days. I know that doing something without the Holy Spirit doesn’t amount to much in the heavenly realm. When it’s all said and done what we did for Jesus is what counts.

I had a dream where I wanted to be known as a woman of faith. I woke up crying about it. I figured out this is a real desire of my heart, to be known as a woman of faith, or woman of God. I pursued this topic after I had the dream to see if I am a woman of God and come to find out, I already am, but other people don’t really know I am. Maybe my immediate family but that’s it. Then I realized from watching a movie called 1 Mile To You that I’m not in competition with anyone. This is my one race. This is my test, no one else’s. If I can focus on Jesus, run my race with my heart and convince my body, mind and soul of who I am I will do something marvelous. My love for Jesus has to be enough. He is enough.

In this movie, the coach said most people die with their music still in them. I believe I have an orchestra inside of me and I will let it out. I will let it out for Jesus and no one else. I do this because it’s me and it’s what I do. Just like Kevin said in the movie about running. Well, I feel this way about everything I do to be closer to God. My mom told me it isn’t for God’s benefit, it’s for my own. To keep me in line, to keep me on track, to keep me in my one race I have to run. I want to run it strong and end strong. I want my life to reflect God’s marvelous glory some how.

Kevin, in the movie, ran to be able to see his girlfriend who just died. He felt connected to her while he was running because they did this together. I realized that the things I do that have to do with God are what connects me to Him. I can see Jesus, I feel the presence of God. This should be the only reason that I do them.

1Corinthians 9:24, 24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

2 Timothy 4:7, I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

Story Of My Life

I saw a picture on face book that said this above it, “Story of My Life” and the picture was a graph with 2 sides. One was a perfect line that said “my plans” and on the other side a scribbly line that said” what actually happened.”

When we make “our plans” for life without including God in the picture, it can be a scribbled up mess. When we want to write our own story and not live His story, our lives can lead to destruction and chaos.

I just read in Johnathan Cahn’s daily devotional that we need hedges in our lives. The word for this in Hebrew is charootz. He explains how making lines of hedges in you life is a decision, determination. We have to be determined to follow Jesus. We need to make decisions that reflect our belief in Him.

When we make a definite decision to follow Jesus and we are determined that nothing will stand in our way then He makes our paths straight. Proverbs 3:6, in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

Personally I want the story of my life to be the story He wrote for me because I know it’s good. Jeremiah 29:11,  For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

 

The Believer Has Hope

 

The reading today is talking about the day after Jesus was crucified and how empty and afraid it left the disciples, not to mention their grief. He says we go through the same emptiness and grief at some point in life whether we know Jesus or not. I don’t like to say following Jesus is a way of pain, sorrow and grief because even those who don’t follow experience these things because that’s just how it is in a fallen world. The difference in following Jesus is there is hope at the end of the suffering. If you aren’t a follower, you don’t have hope. There is nowhere to turn. Eventually we find out we aren’t in control of this world. We will be put in a position to see we need Jesus. If you still deny Him, you really have no hope. But the good news to followers is we have hope that there are new mercies every morning and He will make beauty out of our ashes.

Isaiah 61:3, To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified.”

Lamentations 3:22-23, The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;[a]
    his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.

You Think Your The Judge? Wisdom Knows Different

Scripture for today is Matthew 7:1-5 and it’s telling us to not judge others. We are all the same in God’s eyes. Don’t be a hypocrite!

Ann says: Today I will fast from a critical spirit. Today I will confess my own sin before I crucify anyone else for theirs.

Judging others is so easy to fall into. I have found the best and easiest way to stay away from this is to keep my mouth shut. I was reading yesterday about how to tell if someone is wicked. It said they are arrogant and aggressive. It mentioned speech and that the wicked swear and boast and speak evil of others. So, I will work on keeping my mouth closed unless it is something useful to share with others. I recently saw Sid Roth, It’s Supernatural and there was a pastor on there talking about offence, gossip and slander. He talked about how these are from the devil. His book is called Unmasking The Accuser by Kynan Bridges. Everytime you say something negative about someone you just stabbed them. Our words are powerful, use them wisely.

When I saw The Shack, there was a part where the main character has to be in the judge’s seat. He is put there because he always judges people by appearance, body language, possessions,etc… He is made to look at the people he has judged. God let him see why they were like they were. Then he has to choose which of his children will go to heaven and which one to hell. He is shown they both deserve hell but he has to choose. He wants them both in heaven so he says, take me instead. This is what Jesus did for us. He loved us so much that He took our place.

We can’t judge anyone because we don’t know everything about them and thier life. We don’t even know what is good. God is the only one who knows what is good, knows everything and took our place. That’s why Jesus is the only rightful judge.

Are You Following Jesus Or Church?

When we are faced with questions as a christian and we don’t know how to answer them we need the Holy Spirit for insight, revelation, wisdom and understanding. I have been looking into the sin of judging and gossip lately and the Holy Spirit has shown me something I want to share. You know how churches are known for condemning people who are gay? And it is a hard thing, until the other day I understand how to respond to that. We are not the judge. We have been instructed by Jesus to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and to love others. He didn’t say to judge or condemn anyone. It isn’t our place to figure out anyone’s life. It’s between them and God. Only God knows everything about that person and knows their heart. God is the only one who knows sin and how it came to be. He only knows why each person has the problems they have. We can never begin to know everything. We are only called to love people. We aren’t suppose to sit around and try to figure it all out. We are only suppose to speak well of others, love them and lead them to Jesus. The Holy Spirit does the rest. We can’t save anyone. We just lead and the Holy Spirit does the work. I have learned that trying to be God was what Satan did and when we try to be God we are doing the same thing. It’s wrong and God doesn’t like it.

I am learning that there is a difference in following Jesus and following church. The church is people, not a place or building. Jesus’ Spirit is inside of us. We carry the light. Satan works where he has an opening, even in churches. This is why people are turned off to going to church. Since they see and feel corruption, they turn away and get even further fom God. These man made denomnations are not what Jesus wanted for church. He wants us to fellowship and worship together and spread the good news. Who cares how big or how many satellite churches you have. When Jesus threw the moneychangers out of the synagogue it was because they were tainting something holy with something common. He didn’t like money being a part of the spiritual.

I will confess something here. I was saved in my kitchen in August 2010 with the Gospel Of John on the computer. Jesus came to me and revealed Himself to me all by myself. I have allowed the Holy Spirit to teach me and guide me. He has manifested Himself to me because I ask Him to. He is experienced by me because I want to. This experiencing God is what makes a relationship with Him, not going to church. I am a true worshiper but I don’t fit in with church people and now I don’t fit in with the world. I guess this is how Jesus was. You see, there is the world that belongs to Satan and the so called church. Jesus even said of the church in His day that they were white washed tombs. Meaning they looked good on the outside but empty on the inside. I’m not saying all churches are this way, I’m just saying be careful about where you go.

Go About Doing Good

In my reading of the Mosaic Bible it is a prayer to do good. I recently watched The Shack movie and at the end they said every time we do a kindness the universe changes. I liked the thought of this. That even though I feel small if I show love and kindness it effects the universe. Our collective conscienceness is what the good things are effecting. We are all connected, so like a stone thrown in the water, the kindness has a ripple effect on the whole world. This thought and idea makes me happy and I want to contribute to the wholness of the universe.

Lent to Repent

Scripture reading for today is Luke 6:27-36. It’s talking about doing good to others the way you would want others to do good to you. Love your enemies. Give without wanting a return. Have compassion as God has compassion on us.

Ann says: Today I will thank God for every interruption of my list- as I’ll see it as a manifestation of my Lord.

We should be having an eternal perspective in our daily walk. Everytime we praise God, thank God, spend time with Him and serve other people we are creating what will not burn when we are standing in front of God. Every good act we do inspired by the Holy Spirit counts for something in God’s Kingdom. John Bevere says in Driven By Eternity that when we stand before God we won’t be judged on what we did but rather according to what we were called to do.

 

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Living The Saved Life Is Worth It

In my reading today in the Mosaic Bible she is talking about really being saved or just having an intellectual belief. There is a difference between just saying the prayer and really being made alive in spirit through God’s grace. I know the difference because I have experienced it. I am learning through this Lent devotion that Christianity is about experiencing God and not just having knowledge of Him. I said the salvation prayer probably 3 times in my life that I remember but my life didn’t change in any drastic way. My Self was still the same. I still couldn’t understand the Bible. But when I had my salvation experience in August 2010 it changed everything. I had already known before this day that the old me was dead. I saw myself in my minds eye walking around my house with the old attitudes and I had a knowing “she is dead.” I experienced this myself and no one can take it from me. My salvation, my true salvation was at my kitchen table watching The Gospel of John some days after knowing the old me was dead. This was when I felt the presence of Jesus and He made known to me that He is ALIVE and REAL. He revealed to me that He knows me and poured His love into me. I felt that unconditional love and couldn’t help but say ” I love you” back. This is something hard to explain to the natural mind but its like another reality opens up to you and you see the Truth in your mind. This is the difference between saying a prayer and experiencing Jesus. 2 Corinthians 5:17,Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! John 14:21, Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”

Lent to Repent

The scripture 1 Corinthians 9:19-27 is talking about running this race of faith. Paul is saying how he conforms to the people he is trying to convert while still being true to Christ. He wants to win his eternal prize. He was doing what he was called to do, not for earthly gain but for eternal gain.

Ann says: Repent of wanting to be called christian but not wanting to pay the price.

This is the part of salvation that is hard for people to get to the point of doing. It’s easy to receive salvation but hard to live it out day by day. When I first started I had satan say to me: ” Do you really think you can keep this up?” He tried to put doubt in me. It was a bumpy ride going to and fro in the beginning but I am maturing now in my faith and becoming more stable. The reason for this, is the dream I had about Jesus. Here is the link to my dream. After waking up He told me not to run away again. I have been faithful to stay and see where God leads me. I am so thankful that I listened and obeyed. God has shown me so much these past 4 months and I am a better person because of obeying His call. Luke 1:46-49,  And Mary said,“My soul magnifies the Lord,47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. I feel the same as Mary. The Holy Spirit doesn’t give up on us. He is with us through it all and everything is happening the way it’s suppose to.

 

 

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The Lent That Sticks

Ever since I got saved in August 2010, I have done something to acknowledge the Lent season. I was raised Catholic but that doesn’t have anything to do with it. When I got saved for real, you know when this happens, I had a strong desire to follow Jesus and His teachings. Practicing Lent is not a teaching, it’s something that certain denominational churches have come up with. It’s about observing the 40 days before Easter, representing the 40 days Jesus spent in the desert.

I feel that most people are turned off to observing Lent because they think it’s for the church. I have to say that I am turned off to denominational churches, they are the Pharisees of our day. I am learning more and more about Jesus and how the church of His day hated Him. I know most people don’t know this but it was the church who crucified Jesus. Now I know it was the plan of God but Jesus confronted them on many occasions about how they followed rules but they didn’t know God.

This is what is happening today. People are in church doing church things and they think they have to observe Lent. I choose to observe Lent because of my obedient heart towards God. If you are just going through the motions with an empty heart you are wasting your time and energy. God knows. He sees your heart. That is all He sees for that matter. The things you do or don’t do, doesn’t matter to Him, it’s the state of your heart that counts.

My husband teases me about my Lent devotion. He will say there is Lent all over the table or something funny like that. Today he made another comment like that and something was said to me in my spirit. Whatever it is your doing for Lent season keep doing it. Lent sticks to stuff right? Well, how about letting this Lent stick to your heart and soul? The only Lent that sticks is one done out of love. We love because He first loved us. Out of love we want to please God. Don’t do anything out of obligation, God doesn’t see it or feel it. He wants our love, fellowship, relationship.

I have been reading lately about soaking in His presence and intimacy with God. I found out that I do these things without realizing it just by following the Holy Spirit. I learned from Kim Walker Smith that stopping and talking to God, asking Him questions, this is intimacy with Him. Waiting for His answer, soaking in His presence. The problem we have is we are so rushed all the time and we forget. I have written about this before that forgetting God is the real sin. We have to fight to keep an awareness of His presence. This is what I am aiming for now, to stop and ask the Holy Spirit for direction, what choice to choose, what to say. I want Him in my every moment. This is the Lent that sticks. The Holy Spirit is stuck to you, inside of you, if your a believer, welcome Him, talk to Him, commune with Him. This is what He is waiting for. I read the other day that God is waiting for you to wait on Him! I loved that!

Jesus just wants us. Our belief, faith, love, trust. Following church rules doesn’t bring you closer to Him. Loving Him does.