Posted in Five Minute Friday

An Olympic Godhead

FIVE MINUTE FRIDAY!

 

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

(Although I’ve missed the link-up for this prompt I’ve decided to post anyway).

 

Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: TEAM

 

Team.

A word that conjures a picture of unity and togetherness. Everyone on the same side pulling together! That’s the ideal.

I’ve been part of a team – such as a netball team, such as an editorial team. These teams more or less lived up to that ideal. We all worked together for a common goal—whether that was to beat the opposing side, or to produce a great magazine issue.

I’ve also been part of a team that did not live up to this ideal. Where members back-stabbed and undermined and sought glory for themselves in order to shine, in order to get on and move up. Unpleasant!

What (I wonder), would it be like to work in a team such as the one the Holy Trinity are part of (Father, Son and Holy Ghost)? Each member celebrating the other, co-operating with each other, consulting and agreeing with one another on momentous decisions: “Let us make man in our own image”.

What would it be like to be equal in power, in ability and authority, and yet submit graciously to the other team members? What must it feel like to allow the separate members to shine… to do what they are tasked with—without getting in the way, without questioning, without plotting to grab the glory? Oh the unimaginable bliss of complete and utter unity!

Holy Godhead, how I envy you! How marvellous it must be to work in such an atmosphere of total unity and respect.

Father God, sweet Jesus, divine Holy Spirit – you are the true Olympians!

 

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Question:  Do you have any memorable team experiences you would like to share (good or bad)? 

 

     

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Did You Pray Today?

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Image from Pixabay.com

  

Whilst on this earth, Jesus said: “…men always ought to pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1 NKJ)

And so I would ask you to examine yourself today and answer the following questions honestly:

  • Do you have a consistent prayer life?
  • Do you feel your prayers are effective?
  • Do you believe a diligent prayer life is important to your relationship with God?
  • How happy are you with your prayer life?

In Matthew 6:5-7 Jesus uses the words: “…when you pray…” 3 times. He does not say “if you pray”.

Jesus therefore expected his followers to pray and, as we have read above, he requires that we always pray.

PrayerQuote(commentskart.com)

Prayer is not a last resort. Nor is it merely a spiritual means of God getting me out of a fix, or granting my desires.

Prayer is often associated with intercession, petition, supplication and spiritual warfare. However, it is not just these things. It is also communion or fellowship with our Father God. It is spending quality time in his presence, simply for the pleasure of being with him and wanting to know him better.

Prayer is a privilege. Are you availing yourself of this glorious opportunity to draw closer to God?

Now, if having answered the questions above, you feel that your prayer life is lacking, make amends without delay. Take a leaf from the disciples’ book, who asked Jesus to teach them to pray (Luke 11:1) and whilst you’re at it, ask the Holy Spirit to help you pray consistently.

Prayer-BibleQuote(quotesgram.com)

 

Make no mistake, as women of warfare who aim to walk victoriously in life, an active and diligent prayer life is indispensable.

WoW! followers and visitors have a blessed week!

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Help My Unbelief!

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Hello dear ones,

I came across this video today during my cyber travels and felt I just had to share it with you all. Please don’t let the title put you off! This is not just a message for unsaved people.

Okay (I hear you ask), just where does the issue of evil come in? Well, before I explain, let me first introduce the following text:

So watch your step, friends. Make sure there’s no evil unbelief lying around that will trip you up and throw you off course, diverting you from the living God.

Hebrews 3:12 (The Message)

 

As you can see from the above quote, God tells us in no uncertain terms that unbelief is evil.

Now please understand that I am not accusing anyone of being evil.  However, because the Bible clearly tells us unbelief is evil, we have to accept that any belief system or predominant thought pattern contrary to God’s Word, is therefore evil.

Now, I’d be very surprised if there are any amongst us who will deny that they’ve had their struggles with unbelief. In fact, let me be the first to put my hand up and admit that I’ve struggled with this in the past and it has become even more an issue for me since witnessing the declining health of my dear mother.

Again and again, I’ve had to cry out to my Father God with the same desperate prayer uttered in Mark 9:24: “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”.

Dear precious reader, if you are struggling with believing God’s promises because of a delay to your prayers, or if you feel confused and discouraged about perplexing world events or any other negative circumstance, don’t shrug your shoulders and remain passive in whatever situation seems to be at odds with God’s Word and don’t entertain the lies of the Enemy.

Carry your burdens and troublesome issues to God in prayer. Ask Him to work within your heart and bring you to the place where you can trust Him with all of your heart and not lean upon your own understanding (Proverbs 3:5).

And dear reader, if you are someone who has not yet made a commitment to Christ, I pray your heart will be open to the Spirit of God, as he woos you with his Word and soothes you with this beautiful music.

If this post, or the video speaks to you please let me know in the comment box below – even if it is to reiterate that prayer from Mark 9:24. Thank you.

WoW! followers and visitors have an exceedingly blessed weekend.

 

 

Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: LIFT

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

 lift(fmf)-768x768

Five Minute Friday Prompt: LIFT

 

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—

From whence comes my help?

My help comes from the Lord

Who made heaven and earth.

(Psalm 121: 1-2 NKJ)

 

The above declaration implies that the writer has made a decision to change his focus.

How many times have you felt despondent… felt bereft of hope because life stood up and slapped you in the face instead of gracing you with the smile and gifts of fortune and favour? And how many times have you dwelt on your circumstances and decided that life is hard and unfair?

I recently felt this way.

I’d taken a blogging break and had planned to use the time to work on a long-standing project. My mother’s health suddenly deteriorated to the extent that she was eventually hospitalised and, following discharge, needed full-time care. I decided to take a break from work in order to provide that care.

Daily hospital visits, stress, weariness and the further demands upon my time meant my project was once again consigned to the back burner. The little scrap of time left to me late in the evenings meant I only wanted to eat and relax before going to bed (here read watch TV, or check and despair over my dismal blog stats!).

Added to this, I felt completely overwhelmed by the extra responsibility and was also concerned that I might not be patient enough, mentally or physically strong enough to follow through with this commitment.

My eyes were on my circumstances, on the enormity of my problems and not upon the greatness of my God. It’s easy to do right? To preach it and write or blog about it, but when it comes to the crunch, forget God’s commands and promises and fail to walk in his peace and strength. And before you know it, all the prayers and meditation and bold confessions, all the effort you’ve put in to familiarise yourself with God’s Word and endeavour to submit to his perfect will, have retreated from your consciousness and disappeared from your vocabulary.

“Hath God said…” whispers Satan within your mind and before you can say: “Get behind me!” you have fallen victim to overwhelming doubts, fear and even unbelief.

Dear reader, if these words speak to you where you are at right now, please join with me by lifting your heart and the eyes of your understanding and refocus them upon Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith. Please join with me by discarding your constrictive cloak of heaviness and don your glorious garment of praise and thanksgiving.

Let’s wholeheartedly lift our eyes to our Father God in Heaven (who graciously loves, protects and provides for us) and let’s declare our trust, faith and confidence in Him without reservation.

WoW! followers and visitors may you experience the peace of God that transcends human understanding throughout the coming weeks and may you rest in his comfort and abide in his presence.

 

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Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

Celebrating the Father-heart of God

PRAISE PRAYER & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

father+baby(Pixabay)-22194_960_720

 

Praise

Every good and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning (James 1:17 NKJ)

Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle. (James 1:17 TM)

 

Prayer

Father God,

I don’t want to merely read about, or sing of your goodness. I want to be wholly convinced of it. I ask you to settle this truth deep down in my heart. Help me to stand firm in that assurance, even when things do not go according to my plans or meet with my expectations.

Father God, draw me closer to you with your gentle cords of love. Continue to work within my heart so I may fulfil your perfect will according to your satisfaction and your delight.

In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

 

Worship

Chris Tomlin and Pat Barrett – You are a good good father

(Please don’t skip this – take a moment to sit before God and allow him to minister to your heart)

 

WoW! followers and visitors, may I encourage you to draw closer to your Heavenly Father this week and rest in His unchanging goodness, peace and security? Have a blessed and victorious week.

Posted in Poetry

DID YOU…?

Have you sent Jesus your knee-mail today? (Image by: Gerd Altmann - Pixabay.com)
Have you sent Jesus your knee-mail today? (Image by: Gerd Altmann – Pixabay.com)

 

Did you…?

Have you spent time in the throne room today?

Have you spent quality time with Him, or did you rush away?

Did you linger at His feet?

Linger in His presence, so pure, so sweet?

 

Did you let Jesus soothe your soul’s pain?

Did you let him refresh you, once again?

Did you accept His Word’s healing balm

Whispered with love and authority

And with a voice so cool, so calm?

 

Did you give Jesus sufficient time?

To tell you about his love—

Unfathomable, unconditional,

Tried and true,

Ready at your bidding to be lavished upon you?

 

Or did you rush absentmindedly away?

Not give Jesus ample time today?

Ample time – for him to remind you

That he sees far beyond your limited view,

That his unfailing mercies

Are prepared and packaged just for you?

 

Did you pause in his holy presence?

So he could explain,

That you need not agonise,

Despair, or nurse that pain?

 

Dear wounded, weary, hurt or searching one

Relinquish your load,

Rejoice, and trust God anew

For the road to victory,

The key to your breakthrough,

Lies not in confusion, questions or tears

Lies not in rebellion, anger or fears.

 

Let me tell you dear daughter,

The solution you seek

Is available this hour, this day, this week!

Yes, the answer is found

In His presence profound,

In tarrying in His throne room,

Trusting His Word,

Waiting for his voice of wisdom,

Waiting patiently – not perturbed!

 

And should that answer come winging

From heaven’s miraculous sphere,

Remember to thank him,

Remember to praise,

Remember to worship the Ancient of Days.

 

© Carol Hind – July 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Hey WOW Community – You are a blessing!

 

Image by Gerd Altman - Pixabay.com
Image by Gerd Altman – Pixabay.com

 

Without a sense of caring, there can be no sense of community.

Anthony Burgess

 

Dear all,

My sincere thanks to those of you  who visited, commented, followed and sent messages of support during my absence.

Given that I’ve not been on the blogging scene for long and given my recent 3-month absence, your kind words have touched me.

I am back!

Unfortunately, circumstances beyond my control mean I will not be able to maintain my previous blogging schedule. Future posts will therefore be uploaded as and when time allows. I realise this goes against the grain of Blogging experts’ advice but I’d appreciate you bearing with me in this regard.

I truly count it a privilege to share my heart and my insights with you precious people and, I trust God will continue to use my writing to minister to and encourage my readers. I also hope you will continue to dialogue and engage with me and other visitors, or members of the WoW! community.

May God grant you fulfilment in your lives, an abiding inner peace and the ability to walk daily as a victorious overcomer.

Kind regards,

 

Carol (aka Lady Cee)

 

The spiritual path is not a solo endeavor. In fact, the very notion of a self who is trying to free her/himself is a delusion. We are in it together and the company of spiritual friends helps us realize our interconnectedness.

Tara Brach

 

Posted in Blog posts

Blogging Break

Image from Sophie Janotta (Pixabay.com)
Image from Sophie Janotta (Pixabay.com)

 

Dear fellow bloggers, followers and visitors,

When I first started blogging I had no idea just how time-consuming this would be. I had not reckoned on the time it takes to interact with others, or the amount of time required to maintain a site. Even though I don’t post as regularly as some others, I’ve found my posting schedule difficult to maintain.

For various reasons, I’ve decided to take a 2-3 month break from blogging, so this will be my last post for a while.

Image from Pixabay.com
Image from Pixabay.com

I’d like to thank all those who have visited and supported me with your comments, likes and encouragement and trust you will still be around when I return.  And I’d like to thank all those bloggers who have, despite their personal trials and busy lives, made time to share their inspirational posts, creative endeavours and beautiful images which have truly, truly blessed me these past few months.

Keep up the excellent work and I look forward to re-connecting with you in the near future.

Best wishes,

 

Carol (aka Lady Cee)

 

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

Praise Anthems

PRAISE PRAYER  & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

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Image by Oliver & Hen Pritchard-Barrett (Unsplash.com)

 

Praise

What a beautiful thing, God, to give thanks.

To sing an anthem to you, the High God!

To announce your love each daybreak,

Sing your faithful presence all through the night,

Accompanied by dulcimer and harp,

The full-bodied music of strings.

(Psalm 92:1-3 – The Message)

 

Prayer

Abba Father,

What an honour you have bestowed upon us, in bringing us into royal relationship with you… in deigning to bend your ear to listen to our prayers… in scattering our paths with your bountiful blessings.

Thank you Father God for your manifest presence in our lives. Thank you Heavenly Father for your daily mercies and unconditional love. Help us to glorify you with sincere hearts and joyful lips. May we magnify you in our minds, celebrate you with our songs and exalt you with our praises. I ask this in the matchless name of your Son, Jesus. Amen.

 

Worship

 

Women of Warfare! followers and visitors, have a blessed and victorious week!

Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five-Minute-Friday: UNITE

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

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UNITYrings(PeteLinforth)-684944_960_720

Image by Pete Linforth (Pixabay.com)

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: UNITE

Unite. United. Unity.

I think of those words and I think about how God wants us to be in the Body of Christ. I think about how in some ways we are far from this ideal. Yeah, there may be pockets of lovey-dovey-ness in certain exclusive circles of different fellowships but, whilst they share a certain unity based on their values of acceptance, there are others who are excluded. Then when you look outside of the local fellowship to the Body of Christ, nationwide and worldwide, how united are we really?

For a picture of true unity, a demonstration of what it is like to be truly united, a portrait of what God means when he says he wants us as His children to dwell in and model UNITY, I think of the Holy Trinity, the Godhead—Father, Son and Holy Ghost. And I think of how wonderfully in tune they are with one another. One member comes up with a suggestion and they all agree… “Let us make man in our own image…”

[End of five minutes]

And so it gets done. The three persons of the Godhead unite their will, pool their resources and muster their abilities for a common aim. There is agreement. Result? The creation of man! The bringing into being of a spirit-person who can commune with God… who can relate to and fellowship with Him… who can use his or her unique position within the creative order to maintain the family, the community and the world they’ve been placed in… who can use their gifts, skills and abilities to co-labour with, and serve their Creator.

Now look at the word “UNITE”. The letter “I” sits in the middle, not leading the way, not lagging behind. Many of us will be familiar with the motivational maxim: “there is no “I” in team!” The message of this saying implies: forget yourself—for the good of the team, for the fulfilment of your team’s objectives. In other words, I do not exist, or I have been obliterated!

However, the word UNITE acknowledges there is an “I”. The word does not deny my existence. It accepts me. It embraces me. It incorporates me. It combines me into a new being. But note the word, the prefix, which comes before this “I”. It is “UN”.

To “un” is to denote the opposite, to reverse a process or state. So whilst UNITE does not ignore the existence of “I”, it does call upon I, me, myself, to “un-I”, “un-me”, “un-myself”. It requires me to recognise that I do not, yeah cannot, stand alone or act without having an impact on others around me. It requires me to take full responsibility for my actions which will either UNITE others, or cause DISUNITY. It requires me to clothe myself with Christ and by this action… this un-“I”-ing of me, denote the opposite of me—the spiritual, the supernatural, rather than the carnal. Again, by this action, this un-“I”-ing of me, I reverse the state of self-absorption, allowing the process of becoming Christ-centred and Christ-like.

And the result?

Well, the new “I” (the Christ-centred, Christ-clothed I), is a better being. I come in line with the three members of the Godhead. My thoughts, desires and objectives come into agreement with theirs. We (the Godhead and I), share a common purpose and belief. I am now infused with the love, authority and power of a loving God, a triumphant Saviour and a dynamic Spirit. I now want to share that love, exercise that authority and make opportunities for the Holy Spirit to demonstrate God’s power though me, in the way that He dictates.

And when there is a conjoining of lots of “I”s (i.e. me, you, every member of the Body of Christ—all with the same sanctified mind-set, all moving together as one organic being), we arrive at agreement, we achieve UNITY. And the beauty of this Holy Spirit-engendered mind-set, this Godhead-engineered unity, is that there are no footholds, which the Enemy can use to inveigle his way into our lives… into our communities… into our world… in order to undermine our efforts to unite as spirit-filled believers,  in order to discredit and or disrupt the unity of the Body of Christ, in order to sabotage our lives and our world with deadly discord and disunity.

Dear reader, I have said all of the above to challenge me, myself, and I. I have said all of the above to challenge you!

For the sake of God’s perfect Will, for the sake of coming into agreement with the Holy Godhead, for the sake of us as members of the precious Body of Christ presenting a UNITED front, are you willing to un-“I” yourself?

Women of Warfare! followers and visitors, I pray God will unite our hearts with his perfect, pre-ordained Will for our lives and, that as a result, we will pursue and portray true unity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: EASY

NoProblem(GerdAltmann)-98376_960_720Image by Gerd Altmann (Pixabay.com)

 

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

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Five Minute Friday Prompt: EASY

When my father was alive one of his frequent sayings as he shook his head was: “Life – it no’ easy!

As a child I did not know what he meant. How could I? I was being fed, clothed and had a roof over my head. All I had to do was wake up, eat what was provided, play. And the hardest thing I had to deal with was boring household chores, when I’d much rather be reading!

Then I grew up.

Then I became a Christian.

Now when I first made a true commitment to Christ at the age of 24 years, I thought my life was going to be one beautiful mosaic of light and happiness—come to Jesus and everything will be ok—so I thought!

But living this Christian life is not easy. Dying to self is not easy. Swallowing pride and trying to walk in the footsteps of Christ, is not easy.

[End of 5mins]

Sure my life would resemble the rosy glow of “happy ever after”, as depicted in story books, if there were no challenges to face, no insecurities to overcome, no fears to battle, no inconveniences to put up with, no ‘difficult’ people to cross swords with, no ugliness within my own soul to address. But the fact is, difficulties, disappointments, frustration and hardship are an unavoidable fact of life!

And why on earth did I think it would be any different? Why did I think that pursuing dreams, making decisions, relating to family and friends, fighting both seen and unseen foes would be easy? My own father, speaking from years of bitter experience, declared that it was not so.

But young ears and juvenile hearts do not understand that they have heard the voice of “I’ve seen-it, endured it, and that’s just the way life is” wisdom. Young ears and juvenile hearts do not recognise or pay heed to that voice of wisdom, the voice of accrued knowledge, the voice of proven experience. Young ears and juvenile hearts pay heed to the fascinating voice of story-weavers, the wisdom of glossy magazines with their glossier adverts selling unrealistic dreams and pie-in-the-sky solutions.

And why did I believe that dedicating my life to the one who loved and died for me, would somehow shield me from the harsh realities of a life lived in a fallen world… a world that lies in darkness… a world steeped in sin?

Why on earth, given the incontrovertible evidence of stories about biblical characters, would I be so foolish, so ignorant to believe a Christian life would be a stress-free, problem-free life?

Did Joseph, falsely accused of rape and thrown into prison have it easy? Did David (even though anointed as King of Israel), in perpetual fear for his life whilst being pursued and hunted by his jealous rival King Saul, have it easy? More to the point, did Jesus my Lord and Saviour—the only sinless man who ever lived, yet was betrayed and crucified—have it easy?

I have grown up since the days my deceased father uttered his familiar proverb.

I have slowly grown and matured as a believer, since I made my commitment to Christ.

I have come to the realisation that life indeed, is not easy.

But…

I also realise that without difficulties and disappointments, without tests and trials, without ups and downs, I would not know my Father God, I would merely know about him.

Without obstacles and opposition, I would have no first-hand knowledge of his ability to help and deliver me. Without reasons to pray and seek his face, I would not encounter the One who hears and answers prayers, the One who sees and cares, who loves and provides, who comforts, encourages and strengthens.

And so, now I can speak from the place of a new and higher wisdom. Now I can joyfully quip: who needs easy? What I need  is Jesus!

Yes. Now I can truthfully say, if I were given a choice between a problem-free, stress free existence without God and a sanctified but perplexed-ridden Life with him (note the capital L), I’d choose the latter without any hesitation.

  

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Posted in Blog posts

A Warrior’s Cry

specialbottle(SvetlanaKlaise)-1131237_960_720Image by Svetlana Klaise (Pixabay.com)

 

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Warrior:

  • a skilled fighting man, especially one belonging to earlier times
  • any distinguished soldier or veteran
  • someone notable for strength of spirit or indomitability

Chambers 21st Century Dictionary

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I wonder what image came to mind when you read the title of this post.

Was it the bloodcurdling scream of a fearless combatant charging into battle, brandishing a sword or club?

Well, that is not the warrior’s cry I am speaking of here. I am not referring to the war cry of a superhero. No! I am speaking about the whimper of a wounded one. I am describing the desolate tears of an injured soldier on the battlefield of life.

Dear wounded warrior, be assured. God sees your tears and recognises your fears.

Did you know that he preserves your tears in a bottle? Fancy that! We preserve vegetables or fruit but God preserves our tears. How loving and precious is that?

Don’t believe me? Listen!

You have seen me tossing and turning through the night. You have collected all my tears and preserved them in your bottle! You have recorded every one [tear] in your book. (Psalms 56:8 Living Bible)

In fact, the Bible gives clear evidence of the lengths to which our Father God has gone, in order to show us how much he cares. Isaiah 49:16 tells us that we are inscribed upon the palms of his hands.

Have you ever felt as if your life has been ruined? Do you ever feel despondent about your future? If so, what is your response?

In 1 Chronicles 4:9-10 we read about a woman whose distressing experience of childbirth prompted her to name her son Jabez. The literal interpretation of this name is: He will cause pain.

Can you imagine being saddled with a name like that? Particularly as in bible times, your name was a reflection of your person, a prophetic foretelling of your future. Every time someone called you, spoke to you or about you, they were affirming and confirming the meaning of your given name. They were re-affirming your destiny: “He will cause pain!

Fortunately, Jabez decided he was not going to accept the cards that life had dealt him. He was not going to allow his life, his future to be determined by his mother’s response to a painful experience. He decided that his mother would not have the last word. This unlikely warrior decided to take charge of his fate and change the course of his destiny.

So Jabez enlisted the help of the only person who possessed the power and resources to alter the course of his life. He turned to God in prayer. He appealed to his Father in Heaven and made a specific request regarding how he wanted his life to be—and God granted him his desire.

Jabez could have chosen to wallow in self-pity and remain a victim of his circumstances. He could have lived a life of misery and defeat and felt justified about blaming his misfortune upon his mother.

Instead, he chose to turn his predicament into a prayer project. He chose to refocus his eyes and thoughts and fix them upon God. He chose to cry out in faith and believe God for a future filled with blessing, increase, favour and protection. He decided to superimpose his words and his desired future over his mother’s negative declaration.

And note, Jabez was not only concerned about his future, his own well-being. He cared about the well-being of those around him and asked God to preserve him from evil and keep him from causing pain to others.

Wounded warrior, God loves you. He has seen your trials. He has noted your tears. He is willing to act on your behalf. Will you rise up in faith? Will you refocus your thoughts? Will you refuse to accept the words the Enemy whispers into your heart? Will you take those hurtful words that were flung at you by family, friend or foe and instead of absorbing, or mulling over them, allow them to provoke you into calling upon your Father God and believe Him for the wonderful destiny he’s ordained for your life?

Dear warrior, I know you have the strength to rise up and win. I know God has empowered you with his Word and with his weapons of warfare.

So will you take a leaf from out of Jabez’s book? Will you direct your petition to God—not just for yourself but also on behalf of others?

I know you can—I pray you will!

Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: Whole

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.


FIVE MINUTE FRIDAY

Whole(ThomasKelley-Unsplash)-1458938354258-3e66eb36eb7b

Image from Thomas Kelley – Unsplash

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: WHOLE

To be made whole. That is my heart’s desire. To be whole, to be complete – emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. And what will that take? Faith!

Whilst reading several accounts in the Word of God about people who sought Jesus for healing, the overriding factor common to all of these people was their faith. It was faith (belief in Christ that he could do what he desired them to do), that enabled them to reach out and touch the hem of his garment, or plead for him to have mercy upon them and heal their blind eyes, cleanse their leprous bodies, even raise their dead. Faith. The substance of things hoped for… the evidence of things not seen.

Do you want to be whole? Then reach out to the Father and ask. Reach out to the Father in trust and faith. Reach out and believe that he is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that you ask, all that you can possibly imagine. Ask confident that he loves you, and has your welfare as a primary concern upon his heart. Ask!

 

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Posted in Purpose-driven achiever

Update! (New Purpose-Driven Achiever Posts)

Hello Fellow Bloggers,

I am having to advertise my PDA posts through my Women of Warfare! (WoW!) blog site since, for some obscure reason my PDA posts do not appear in the Reader. Consequently, I have no means of driving traffic towards this other blog, or making potentially interested bloggers aware of its existence.

Thank you for your forbearance.

 The following are three posts, which I hope will be of interest to you.  To read more, simply click on the links and they will bring you to the relevant post on my Purpose-driven achiever blog site.DownArrow(tremara1)-254093_960_720

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BE GRATEFUL!

Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude (Denis Waitley).

https://apurposedrivenachiever.wordpress.com/2016/04/08/be-grateful/

 

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SECRETS OF SUCCESS…

As purpose-driven believers and dream-achievers we can all benefit from the advice of those who have already reached that pinnacle of success in their own lives.

https://apurposedrivenachiever.wordpress.com/2016/03/28/secrets-of-success/

 

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YOU DIDN’T COME THIS FAR…

It’s vital to have a supportive community around you. It’s important to have people who will speak a positive word into your life. And it can be invaluable, when that key word is spoken at the right time. I read a post this week from a very switched-on young lady, whose words of wisdom belie her years. I just had to reblog this post and I trust it will be a timely word of encouragement and inspiration to many of you.

https://apurposedrivenachiever.wordpress.com/2016/04/10/you-didnt-come-t…ly-come-this-far/

 

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PS: If you wish to like these posts, or leave any comments, I’d be grateful if you would kindly put these on my Purpose-driven achiever site. Thank you.

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

A Grateful Heart

PRAISE PRAYER & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

 

ThankGodcolorful-1191076_960_720

 

Praise

You are my God, and I will praise You;

You are my God, I will exalt You.

Bless the Lord, O my soul;

And all that is within me, bless His Holy name!

Bless the Lord, O my soul,

And forget not all His benefits

(Psalm 118:28; Psalm 103:1-2)

 

Prayer

Father God,

Forgive us when we murmur and complain. Open our eyes to see the wonderful blessings you have showered upon our lives. Open our hearts and enable us to appreciate your goodness and mercy toward us. May we acknowledge in humility that we have done nothing to deserve your unfailing love and kindness. Open our mouths that we may speak with tongues of gratitude and glorify you in the manner you deserve.

Amen.

 

Worship

 

Have you deposited into your “Thank God account” today?

Women of Warfare! (Wow!) followers and visitors, I wish you God’s joy, peace and favour throughout the coming week.

 

 

Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday – DECIDE

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

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Image from Pixabay.com

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: DECIDE

I’ve often likened my Christian walk to a James Bond assignment.

Yes, I get to decide to follow Jesus. I get to decide whether or not to obey God’s laws, his directions, his requirements. I do not get to decide my path.

I get to choose my destiny but I do not decide how I will reach it. Like John (Christ’s disciple) said: I must decrease and allow Jesus, the “anointed one” to increase in my life, to take the initiative.

My journey sometimes has clear directions but more often than not it has several roads where I have to decide which one to take. In order to make sure I am on the right path, God’s path, I have to humble myself and ask him. I have to allow his lamp to guide my feet and his light to direct my path.

I hate making decisions and this often leads to me either taking an inordinate amount of time in doing so, or putting off making it at all. That’s why it can be a relief having an all-seeing, all knowing, all powerful God take care of the decision-making for me.

 

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Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: ALIVE!

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate Motaung announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

 

handsALIVE(Alexas_Fotos)-751066_960_720Image by Alexas_Fotos (Pixabay.com)

Five Minute Friday Prompt – ALIVE

What a wonderful privilege I have been given. I am alive!

There was a time that I had God’s breath in me but I was merely existing, going from day to day in a spiritual fog, not knowing who I am, or where I was going in life. But since I invited my Saviour (the Lover of my soul), into my unregenerate heart, into my sordid life, I became alive!

Easter (being the time when I celebrate what my wonderful Saviour has done for me), has caused me to reflect upon the fact that if Jesus had not been raised from the dead, there would have been no hope, no destiny, no glorious future for me. I would have remained locked in a prison of misery.

Hallelujah to the Lord God Almighty! Because of his love for me, because of Christ’s obedience to him, I am alive!

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Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday – SURPRISE

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate Motaung announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

rose(Surprise-KerstinRiemer)-833342_960_720

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt – Surprise

It’s strange. I know that life is not a bed of roses. And yet when misfortune comes knocking at my door it takes me completely by surprise. Not the surprise that is delightful (like a party or gift) but an unwelcome event. Like when my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. It took me completely by surprise. Here was this woman, whom I’d always known to be strong and capable and fit even into old age. Then suddenly wham! Out of the blue. Just like that my expectation that she would always be like that—always be in command of her faculties, always be the strong one at the helm of our family—changed. It was not a pleasant surprise.

Have you ever been hit like this? Ridiculous me asking, because of course you have! As I mentioned at the beginning, life is not one big party. It holds its ups and downs.

 

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Posted in Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday – SHARE

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate Motaung announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

clouds(Share-G Altmann)-806637_960_720

Image by Gerd Altmann (Pixabay.com)

Five Minute Friday Prompt – Share

I find it amazing that in this world where everyone tries to grab power for themselves that the one who holds supreme power would share it with me. Yes, my Father God, who owns the earth, owns the cattle on a thousand hills, owns every human being upon the earth and everything in heaven come to think of it—has deigned to share his power with me because of his Son Jesus Christ.

You see I am His heir and a joint heir with Christ. That means I have equal share of Jesus’s inheritance. And Jesus himself when he was on this earth declared that all power belonged to him and in light of that he now commissions me to take that power and use it to bring others to him, to deliver captives from the kingdom of darkness, to use my faith to bring healing and deliverance to others. A power that some unscrupulous people would snatch my right arm off for and yet… I do not take full advantage of what I’ve been given.

 

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Posted in Blog posts, Poetry

Is It Nothing To You…?

Cross(JozsefKincse)-175824_960_720Image from József Kincse – Pixabay.com

 

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)

 

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Is it nothing to you?

That he took your place,

That he died for you,

For the whole human race?

 

Is it nothing to you?

That he came down from high

And resolved to suffer

Yes, resolved to die?

 

Is it nothing to you?

That his hands were nailed

‘Cos you’d fallen short

‘Cos God’s law you’d failed?

 

Is it nothing to you?

That he drank Wrath’s cup

That he drained every drop

Sin required you to sup?

 

Is it nothing to you?

The cross of Calvary

The pain and price he paid

To set you wholly free?

 

Is it nothing to you?

That they pierced his feet,

And punctured his side,

That he suffered all this

To make you his Bride?

 

But if it all means nothing

Which could well be the case—

I have one final question before you go

Do you know anyone else who loves you so?

© Carol Hind – March 2016

 

Dear reader, do you know Jesus loves you? Do you accept that he loved you more than his own life? That is why he died for you and for me. If you do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ but would like to, all you need to do is ask. You can do so in your own words, or you can say the following prayer:

Father God,

I want to have a relationship with you. Thank you for loving me and sending your son Jesus to die for me. Jesus, I invite  you into my heart.  I invite you into my life as my Saviour and my Lord. Thank you for saving me. Amen.

If you have prayed the above, welcome to the family of God! May I encourage you to visit my other blog and read my post: (Paradise Lost or Paradise Regained?). This will help you understand more about the step you have taken and provide links to help you with your recent decision to accept Jesus into your life. I wish you God’s strength, peace and favour during the coming days.

And to those who have already made Jesus their Lord, are you enjoying the abundant life for which Jesus died, so we may have? As we continue to walk with him, may we remember daily the price he paid… may we remember we are not our own, that we have been bought with a price (His precious blood) and may we be motivated daily to walk as victorious overcomers!

Women of Warfare (WoW!) followers and visitors – have a wonderful Easter break.

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Posted in Purpose-driven achiever

New PDA Post! – May I Wash Your Feet?

Hello Fellow Bloggers,

I write for another blog site but for some obscure reason my posts from there do not appear in the Reader. Consequently, I have no means of driving traffic towards this other blog, or making potentially interested bloggers aware of its existence.

I am therefore resorting to advertising my new posts through my Women of Warfare! (WoW!) blog and appreciate your forbearance.

 


 

 

JesusWashingFeet (BennoOosterom)-1051030_960_720

Image from Benno Oosterom – Pixabay.com

In recent weeks we’ve been looking at life metaphors. One of mine is that life is a journey. I believe most of you would agree with me that we are all on a journey of some kind—a journey towards our dreams and aspirations, towards God’s purpose for our lives and ultimately towards our eternal destiny.

In biblical times it was the custom for hosts to wash the dust and grime from the feet of their guests. It was an act of hospitality but also seen as an act of servitude. To wash someone else’s feet requires humility, as demonstrated by Jesus when he laid aside his garments to wash the feet of his disciples.

To read this post in its entirety please visit: https://apurposedrivenachiever.wordpress.com/2016/03/25/may-i-wash-your-feet/

If you are minded to leave a comment, like, or rating of this post, please do so on my PDA blog site. Many thanks!

 

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

Awesome, August and All-powerful!

  PRAISE PRAYER & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

 

marble(KatrinSchulz)-393357_960_720Image: Katrin Schulz – Pixabay.com

 

Praise

GOD! Let the cosmos praise your wonderful ways,

The choir of holy angels sing anthems to your faithful ways!

Search high and low, scan skies and land,

You’ll find nothing and no one quite like GOD.

The holy angels are in awe before him;

He looms immense and august over everyone around him.

GOD of the Angel Armies, who is like you,

Powerful and faithful from every angle?

(Psalm 89:5-8: The Message)

 

 

Prayer

Father God,

Since creation shouts in triumphant testimony to your phenomenal power,

How can our lips refrain from praising you?

You are awesome Holy God.

Having fashioned us from dust into complex works of art,

How can we refuse to sacrifice our lives to you?

You are worthy Holy God.

Crowned with precious gifts for your service, dare we use them for self-glory?

You are gracious Holy God.

Hear the cry of our hearts and

Let the work of our hands glorify—not alienate you.

May our endeavours reinforce your divine order—not undermine it.

Combine our private faith and public pursuits into a pleasing and lingering fragrance,

Which rises like incense to your throne. Amen.

© Carol Hind 2005

 

Worship

(please don’t skip this video – you will be blessed! – I recommend that you open this to full screen)

 

 

 

Wishing all Women of Warfare! (Wow!) followers and visitors a Happy Easter!

 

 

Posted in Purpose-driven achiever

New Post! (Purpose Driven Achiever)

Hello Fellow Bloggers,

I write for another blog site but for some obscure reason my posts from there do not appear in the Reader. Consequently, I have no means of driving traffic towards this other blog, or making potentially interested bloggers aware of its existence.

I am therefore resorting to advertising my new posts through my Women of Warfare! (WoW!) blog and appreciate your forbearance.

 

tri-delta(Character-JohnHain)-651443_960_720

Charisma or Character?

In his best-selling publication, The Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren said that when we understand life is a test, we will realise that there is no situation we face and no incident that occurs, which is insignificant.

So, what is the purpose of tests?

Deuteronomy 8:2 provides a clue:

And you shall remember that the Lord your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not.

And Rick Warren further elaborates on the purpose of tests. He says:

Character is both developed and revealed by tests

And so, in this post, we’re going to take a look at character.

To read this post in its entirety please visit: https://apurposedrivenachiever.wordpress.com/2016/03/18/charisma-or-character/

 



 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Walls! Walls! Walls!

CityWalls(tpsdave-David Mark)-164825_960_720Photo image from David Mark – Pixabay.com

 

Whilst listening to a teaching by Joyce Meyer, she made an observation that went something like this:

“In order to wall others out, you are walling yourself in. Let God be your wall of protection.”

Her statement set me thinking, which then motivated me to find out what others had to say on the subject of walls. Here’s what I discovered.

For reflection

1)

We build too many walls and not enough bridges.

(Isaac Newton)

2)

Before you were born,

And were still too tiny for

The human eye to see,

You won the race for life

From among 250 million competitors.

And yet,

How fast you have forgotten

Your strength,

When your very existence

Is proof of your greatness.

You were born a winner,

A warrior,

One who defied the odds

By surviving the most gruesome

Battle of them all.

And now that you are a giant,

Why do you even doubt victory

Against smaller numbers,

And wider margins?

The only walls that exist,

Are those you have placed in your mind.

And whatever obstacles you conceive,

Exist only because you have forgotten

What you have already Achieved.”

Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem

3)

“We all build internal sea walls to keep at bay the sadnesses of life and the often overwhelming forces within our minds. In whatever way we do this—through love, work, family, faith, friends, denial, alcohol, drugs, or medication—we build these walls, stone by stone, over a lifetime. One of the most difficult problems is to construct these barriers of such a height and strength that one has a true harbor, a sanctuary away from crippling turmoil and pain, but yet low enough, and permeable enough, to let in fresh seawater that will fend off the inevitable inclination toward brackishness.”

Kay Redfield Jamison, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness

4)

With no consideration, no pity, no shame,

they have built walls around me, thick and high.

And now I sit here feeling hopeless.

I can’t think of anything else: this fate gnaws my mind –

because I had so much to do outside.

When they were building the walls, how could I not have noticed!

But I never heard the builders, not a sound.

Imperceptibly they have closed me off from the outside world.

(Constantine P. Cavafy)

5)

For by you I can run against a troop,

By my God, I can leap over a wall.

(Psalm 18:29)

6)

“But love is much like a dam: if you allow a tiny crack to form through which only a trickle of water can pass, that trickle will quickly bring down the whole structure, and soon no one will be able to control the force of the current. For when those walls come down, then love takes over…”

Paulo Coelho, By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept

 

7)

Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.

(Maya Angelou)

 

For self-examination

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, let me ask you this:

  • Are you building walls, or have you already built walls around yourself, which are not only shutting others out but also cutting you off from potential opportunities?
  • If (like Cavafy), you believe that others have built imprisoning walls around you, are you willing to call out to God and ask him to give you the desire, energy and wisdom to leap over those walls that are keeping you captive?
  • According to Romans 5:5, God’s agape love has been poured out in our hearts. Given Angelou’s statement, do you accept God’s love can penetrate or dismantle any barriers erected as a response to past offences? Are you willing to humble yourself and ask God to make this happen and allow Him to do so?
  • Consider Kassem’s depiction of us as warriors. Does it enable you to see yourself as a victor, or an overcomer, despite any undesirable circumstances you may currently face?

 

Prayer:

Father God, deliver us from unhealthy thoughts and attitudes and emotions that drive us to erect walls around ourselves. Enable us to extend the hand of love and motivate us to build relational bridges. Amen.

 

Further Reading:

Want to explore this topic further? The following short post (There is no safety behind emotional walls) may be of interest.

 

Did any of the above quotes speak to you? Please share your thoughts and responses in the comment box below.

 

Posted in Blog posts

A Celebration of Motherhood and Tribute to my Mother

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 Image credit: Omar Medina Films at Pixabay.com

 

Today is Mothers Day, or Mothering Sunday in the UK. I’d like to take this time to celebrate Mothers and Motherhood. I’d like to take this opportunity to pay special tribute to my mum, who is the dearest of all mothers (forgive me for my bias).

 

A mother – when you’re a child she walks before you to set an example. When you’re a teenager she walks behind you to be there should you need her. When you’re an adult she walks beside you so that as two friends you can enjoy life together.

(Author unknown)

 

The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness. (Honoré de Balzac)

 

Earlier this week I read a newspaper article about pop singer Adele, who began her world tour in the UK at the end of last month.

The article reported on Adele’s surprise visit to a 12 year old girl in Belfast, Ireland, who suffers from cerebral palsy and epilepsy. This heart-warming act of kindness, captured in a photo of Adele smiling tenderly at her young fan lying in bed, whilst the girl (Rebecca) gazes up at the singer with adoring eyes, makes a cute human interest story indeed. The Brit Award winner’s impromptu visit so thrilled Rebecca’s mother that she remarked “…It’s made me feel like I’m the best mummy in the world”.

Well, I can fully understand why she would believe this but sorry – I beg to differ. The crown for ‘Best Mother in the World’ has already been awarded and this went to my mother! And, I have it on good authority that once awarded, this title is irrevocable.

My mum is the best mother any daughter, indeed any child could wish to have. I don’t know how much longer I will have to enjoy her company on this earth but whilst she is still around, I want to celebrate and serve her to the best of my ability. I love my mum to bits. She is 86 years old and was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease a few years ago.

When I was much younger, there were times that I did not celebrate my mum. I was rude and disrespectful both to her face and behind her back. How I regret this. How I wish I could claw back those unpalatable thoughts and words I’d dished up for my mother’s consumption. I was wrong and I was very much out of order!

One never knows what lies ahead of us. I never dreamt my mother would be any less than the active, capable and strong woman that she used to be. My mother was (still is) a god-fearing, prayerful woman of God, who loved and was most loyal to her pastor and fellow church members. She loved her children and regularly prayed for us. Ill? Prayer was her response. Discouraged, or depressed? Prayer was her response. At the end of our tether? Prayer was her response. Any adverse situation we encountered, or problem we confided, mum faithfully brought to the throne room of God.

As teenagers this was rarely appreciated. There would be eye-rolling from deep within the inner recesses of our unregenerate hearts. As young adults, we felt sheer embarrassment as we left the house for work and witnessed startled, or curious passers-by glancing up at my mum’s bedroom window because her voice, lifting up passionate pleas to God in prayer, could be heard.

But when I re-surrendered my life to Christ, how I appreciated this rich legacy of prayer. How I appreciated my mother’s induction into a spiritual climate and lifestyle of fervent intercession and prayer.

Mum is very family oriented. She celebrated our birthdays with lavish dinner parties, cooked up a mega-fest of culinary dishes at Christmas – year, after year, after year and was a supreme example of generous-hearted hospitality.

My mother may no longer be the woman she once was but as far as I am concerned she is one in a gazillion! Let me reiterate – my mum is the best (nay the bestest!) mother in the world!

 

A Mother’s Love

A Mother’s Love is like an island

In life’s ocean vast and wide,

A peaceful, quiet shelter

From the restless, rising tide …

A Mother’s Love is like a fortress

And we seek protection there

When the waves of tribulation

Seem to drown us in despair …

A Mother’s Love’s a sanctuary

Where our souls can find sweet rest

From the struggle and the tension

Of Life’s fast and futile quest …

A Mother’s Love is like a tower

Rising far above the crowd,

And her smile is like the sunshine

Breaking through a threatening cloud …

A Mother’s Love is like a beacon

Burning Bright with Faith and Prayer,

And through the changing scenes of life

We can find a Haven There …

For A Mother’s Love is fashioned

After God’s enduring love,

It is endless and unfailing

Like the love of Him above …

For God knew in His great wisdom

That He couldn’t be Everywhere,

So He put His Little Children

In a Loving Mother’s care.

(Author unknown)

 

Happy Mother’s Day mum!

May the Lord bless you and keep you. May he make his face shine upon you. May he be gracious to you and give you peace. Amen.

(Adapted from Numbers 6:24-26).

 

Posted in Purpose-driven achiever

Is Your Life-Metaphor Flawed?

Motivation(Alexas_Fotos)-954599_960_720

MOTIVATIONAL MONDAY

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Metaphor:

  • An expression in which the person, action or thing referred to is described as if it really were what it merely resembles (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)

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In his book, The Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren states that the way we see our lives will shape our lives. He says, whether consciously or unconsciously, our life-metaphor (the internal image we have of life) will influence how we conduct our lives…

Interested in reading more? Please visit my PDA blog.

Not yet read part one? Follow this link.

 

PS: If you wish to like this PDA post, or leave a comment, I’d be grateful if you would kindly put these on my purpose-driven achiever site. Thank you.

 

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

Heartfelt Praise

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PRAYER PRAISE & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

 

Praise

PRAISE the Lord!

Praise the Lord, O my soul!

While I live I will praise the Lord;

I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.

(Psalm 146:1-2 NKJ)

 

Whoever offers praise glorifies Me;

And to him who orders his conduct aright

I will show the salvation of God.

(Psalm 50:23 NKJ)

 

Prayer

Father God,

Right now I come into your awesome presence to honour you – not just with my lips but with my heart and soul, with my entire being. I come to offer you the praise and the worship that you deserve because you are so worthy. I love you Father God. I want to love you more. I want to know you more. I want to understand your ways better because I want to glorify you, both in and through my life.

Lord Jesus, thank you for your example of honouring our Father whilst you walked on this earth. As your disciple I want to do likewise, so I thank you for your ongoing prayers and intercession on my behalf. I realise this will not happen by my own efforts or willpower but by your Holy Spirit.

Holy Spirit, I call upon you as my Helper. Thank you for your anointing within me that teaches me. Teach me how to honour Father God, not only with my lips but also with my lifestyle.

I thank you Father God for hearing my prayer and granting my request. Amen.

 

(References: Matthew 15:8; Revelation 4:11; Romans 8:34; Hebrews 7:24; Zechariah 4:6; John 14:16, 26; 1 John 5:14)

 

 Worship

 

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, I pray that the Lord will draw you into a deeper experience of Him.  I pray your hearts will overflow with inexpressible joy as you spend time in his presence and take time to express your love for him. Share those secret desires of your heart in prayer, knowing he listens and knowing he loves you and desires to fellowship with you.

Have a victorious week!

PS: If you are reading this and you do not have a relationship with God but would like to, may I invite you to accept Jesus as your Saviour? To do so, you simply have to repeat the following prayer and God will do the rest (please don’t hesitate – your eternal destiny depends on whether or not you take this next step!).

 

A Prayer for Salvation and a Relationship with God

Father God,

I want to have a relationship with you. I come to you today in the name of your Son, Jesus. Thank you for making it possible for me to be reconciled with you. I realise I am in need of rescuing from the penalty of sin. I believe Jesus died for me and I accept He is the only way through which I can escape eternal punishment. I therefore repent of my sins and ask your forgiveness.  Jesus, I invite you into my life as my Saviour and my Lord. Amen.

 

If you prayed the above prayer in sincerity, congratulations and welcome to the Family of God!

The following links will help you take your next steps in your new life and provide the guidance you need. I’d also suggest that you talk to a Christian friend and/or find a church to attend and receive support. You may also find the following post at my other blog site enlightening (Paradise Lost or Paradise Regained?), as this explains why the step you have just taken is vital for safeguarding your eternal destiny.

If you accepted my invitation to commit your life into God’s care and prayed the above prayer, please let me know you have done so in the comment box below (don’t be shy!) 🙂

WoW! followers and visitors – no need to feel left out! If you’ve been encouraged, inspired or uplifted by this post, please don’t hesitate to share your comments below. I look forward to hearing from you.

 


 

NB: Praise Prayer and Worship Wednesdays  occur on the 1st and 4th Wednesdays of each month

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

We Exalt and Worship You O Lord

  PRAISE PRAYER & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

 

sunset(Werner22brigitte)-142698_960_720

 

Praise

Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and the earth is Yours; Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and Yours it is to be exalted as Head over all.

Both riches and honour come from You, and You reign over all. In Your hands are power and might; in your hands it is to make great and to give strength to all.

Now therefore, our God, we thank you and praise Your glorious name and those attributes which that name denotes.

1 Chronicles 29:11-13 (Amplified Bible)

 

Prayer

Awesome God, I come into your Holy Presence with heartfelt praise and thanksgiving. Thank you for making me worthy through the precious blood of your Son, Jesus. Father God, I choose to magnify you today. I choose to magnify you above those circumstances which have distracted and broken my focus. I choose to hand those situations over to you, to trust you and not lean on my own understanding. I choose to recall that your mercies are new every morning and to remember you as a covenant-keeping God. I choose to exalt you above my fears, inadequacies and insecurities. I choose to worship you in the beauty of holiness. Be exalted O Lord God most High. Thank you for welcoming me into your throne room and thank you for hearing my prayer. Amen.

 

Worship

 

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, may the Lord bless you and keep you safe, may His grace and favour surround you and may His peace that surpasses all understanding be yours throughout this week.

 

Posted in Blog posts

Paradise Lost or Paradise Regained?

Image from: M. Maggs - Pixabay.com
Image from: M. Maggs – Pixabay.com

 

This post is an invitation to paradise – a place where there are no troubles, trials or tears. The invitation is open to everyone and yet it is often ignored. If you’ve already accepted – congratulations! If you have not – what will you do? Be wise. Choose life. Choose paradise!

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Want to read more? Please follow the link to my Purpose-driven achiever site (Paradise Lost/Regained)

 Are you minded to comment, like, or rate this post? I will be very grateful if you could also kindly copy and paste your response at the Purpose-driven achiever blog site. Thank you.

Posted in Purpose-driven achiever

What is your Life Metaphor?

MOTIVATIONAL MONDAY

 

Motivation(Alexas_Fotos)-954599_960_720

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Metaphor:

An expression in which the person, action or thing referred to is described as if it really were what it merely resembles (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)

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…What metaphor do you use to describe your life?

To read more please visit my PDA blog

 

PS: If you wish to like this post, or leave a comment, I’d be grateful if you would kindly put these on my purpose-driven achiever site. Thank you.

 

Posted in Blog posts

Are You Reading The “Good Book”?

ReadingBible (Unsplash)-945422_960_720

 

An unread book

The other day I came across a book I’d bought. It was the Bloomsbury Good Reading Guide – What To Read And What To Read Next. I’d bought it way back in 2003 because I had a desire to become more widely read. Now over a decade later, I’ve neither read it, consulted it, or used it in any way, shape or form.

Do you have books on your shelf that are unread, or only partially read? What about the greatest Book of all books – your Bible, the Word of God? How often do you read it?

 

A much-loved and much-read book

Once upon a time, when I first made a serious commitment to the Lord, I had a brown leather-bound King James’ Bible which was so well-used, its pages became dog-eared and fragile. To make matters worse, the binding began to disintegrate and quite a few pages subsequently become loose. I resorted to using sellotape to repair torn pages, causing some leaves to cleave obstinately together from the sticky residue of the sellotape applied.

I loved that Bible and whilst I may not have known the actual reference for a particular scripture verse when quoted, I knew whereabouts in my bible I could find it (i.e. whether Old or New Testament, which book and the general location on page). This old bible was annotated, arrowed, circled, cross-referenced, highlighted, underlined and every blank space (front and back) filled with notes— choruses, definitions, prayer reminders, any valuable nugget I could record. That old bible meant just as much to me as an old favourite toy or teddy bear can mean to a young child and it was a tug for me to finally let it go and move on to a new one.

 

A neglected book?

Now recently I’ve read various posts challenging and provoking Christians to read their Bibles regularly. As prayer warriors, the spoken Word of God is an essential part of our armour—it is the sword of the Spirit. However, we cannot declare, proclaim, or pray God’s Word with confidence, if we do not know what it says.

If we are going to be effective as prayer warriors, if we are going to reign victoriously over our circumstances, if we are wanting to appropriate this abundant life that Jesus Christ paid such a dear price for us to have and enjoy, then we need to be familiar with, and understand God’s Word. The onus is therefore upon us to read, meditate upon and study the Bible.

 

Benefits untapped

Going back to the Bloomsbury guide referred to at the beginning of this post, I’m sure there are dozens of books this guide could point me to, which would enrich my reading repertoire and thus assist my aims and ambitions as a writer. Whilst it remains on my bookshelf unread however, I cannot avail myself of its commentaries, editorial suggestions and literary expertise.

Likewise, as Christian believers, as prayer warriors, our ability to become intimately acquainted with God, our ability to know His will, plan and purpose for our lives, our ability to withstand the lies and wiles of the Enemy, to pray and intercede effectively, is dependent upon how much of God’s Word we know, understand, put into practice and stand upon in faith.

And so fellow believers, if you are guilty of habitually neglecting God’s Word, please be aware that you are walking around with a blunt sword. Please be aware that a vital element of your armour has become useless. Please be aware that without the complete armour (as described in Ephesians 6:11-17), you will not have the spiritual strength to resist Satan’s schemes and strategies unleashed against your life and against the lives of your loved ones.

 

The last word

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, if Jesus has the words of eternal life (John 6:68), if God’s Word is to be effective as a lamp to your feet and a light to your path (Psalm 119:105), then I would encourage you to take stock of your personal engagement with God’s Word and if deep down in your heart, you know it to be lacking, then make amends. Don’t delay, don’t ignore, don’t make excuses. It could be a matter of life and death—the health and vigour of your spiritual life and the putting to death of carnality!

 

 

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

An Awesome God!

PRAYER PRAISE & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

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Prayer

Awesome God, You are worthy to be praised. I bring to you today my sacrifice of joy and thanksgiving. Grant me O Lord an ever-increasing sense of your mighty power… an ever-increasing revelation of your glory and might. In Jesus’s name I pray. Amen.

 

Praise

Who among the gods is like you, O Lord?

Who is like you—majestic in holiness,

Awesome in glory,

Working wonders?

(Exodus 15:11 NIV)

 

Worship

 

 

Women of Warfare, may the peace of God be with you – have a blessed week!

 

Posted in Blog posts

Victim or Victor – You can choose!

Image from: Pixabay.com
Image from: Pixabay.com

 

And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth (Revelation 5:10)

 

Characteristics of a Victim/Victor

A victor is a conqueror, an overcomer—someone who enforces the victory Christ wrought over the Enemy, within their life… someone who uses their authority in Christ, their power of attorney, to bring victory to the lives of others.

Whereas, a victim is someone who is deceived, or continually defeated by their circumstances. A victim is someone who remains passive in the face of the Enemy’s attacks, whether that attack is directed at their own life, or the life of their loved ones.

Please don’t misunderstand me. A victorious life does not mean a problem-free life. However, as victors, we are to reign over our circumstances, rather than allowing those circumstances to overwhelm us. How do we do this? Romans 5:17 indicates we can reign in life through Jesus Christ. However, as humans, we are weak and finding that continuous strength to stand victoriously in situations that may have devastated us, sought to undermine us, is sometimes just not there, or can be the furthest thing from our mind. In times like these, we should emulate David, who finding himself feeling disheartened and overwhelmed, called out to His God in prayer.

Hear my cry, O God;

Attend to my prayer.

From the end of the earth I will cry to You,

When my heart is overwhelmed;

Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.

(Psalm 61:1-2)

 

Self-sabotage or Kingdom Rule?

Have you abdicated your throne?

Yes, we are to submit our lives to God and allow him pre-eminence in our lives but the onus is upon us to rule, subdue and take dominion… the onus is upon us to enforce God’s Word and the principles of His Kingdom on this earth, in our circumstances, in our communities, even in our church. Jesus has already won the victory for us – that is why the Bible calls us “more than conquerors”!

It takes discipline and perseverance to be a victor (Hebrews 6:12)

I believe it takes the same amount of energy to wallow in despair and pessimism and remain a victim. So, why expend that negative energy? Is it not better to use our strength to fight for victory, fight for a change in our circumstances, fight to maintain a sound, well-balanced mind, fight for what God has freely given to us, fight for his will, plan and purpose to be effected in our lives? Do you agree? Then (as Paul encourages us to do), let us fight the good fight of faith, let us lay hold of the eternal life, the abundant life for which Jesus’ blood has so dearly paid (1 Timothy 6:12; John 10:10).

How does a victor persevere? Through hope, through faith.

Hope anchors the victor’s soul in peace, the peace that surpasses understanding (Hebrews 6:19, Philippians 4:7). Hope stabilizes the victor’s emotions. Hope protects the victor’s mind. Victors may feel cast down by adversity, by the afflictions of their life. They may sometimes succumb to the lies and taunts of our adversary the devil—but like David, victors choose to speak the Word of God to their souls (see Psalm 42:5-6, Psalm 43:5, Psalm 27:13) and, in doing so, victors choose to awake, choose to arise, choose to clad themselves with strength, put on their armour and stand against the wiles of the devil.  The victorious lifestyle does not just happen – it is a choice.

Now victims sabotage their own well-being. How? Through unbridled fear and unbelief, which in turn leads to pessimism.

And how does pessimism stamp its hallmark upon a victim? Through compliance! Through permission! Through heart and soul agreement about the ‘reality’ of their circumstances (whether that agreement, compliance or permission is done out of ignorance or not)!

Each time a victim chooses not to stand on the truth of God’s Word but focuses upon the undesirable circumstance, their heart despairs. Despair is loss of hope. And as we saw above, hope anchors our soul (i.e. our mind, will and emotions). Therefore, where there is no hope, emotions become erratic, the thoughts of our mind negative and our will undisciplined and contrary.

 

Fear or Faith?

A victor is motivated by faith. However, a victim is immobilised by doubt and fear.

Victors heed the Apostle Paul’s direction that we: “…continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and [be] not moved away from the hope of the gospel…” Colossians 1:23.

On the other hand, victims give credence to and empower their circumstances by failing to look at Jesus who is the author (originator) and finisher (completion) of their faith; choosing instead to concentrate on that which is temporal and therefore, subject to change (Hebrews 12:2-3; 2 Corinthians 4:17-18).

Am I saying that we should pretend our problems, trials and tribulations do not exist? No dear reader – I am most definitely not saying this! I am not advocating that we live in denial. I am saying acknowledge your difficulties yes, but deny them the ability to permanently distract, distress and disempower you.

Whose report will you believe?

You are a born-again believer. In whom, or in what do you believe?

Do you believe in an omnipotent and gracious God… a loving and compassionate Christ… a resourceful and helpful Holy Spirit? (That takes care of the “in whom do you believe?”).

OR

Do you believe in your fear-induced thoughts… the seeming impossibilities of your circumstances…the perpetual goading of the Enemy? (And that takes care of the “in what do you believe?”).

Women of Warfare! – Choose to exercise hope. Choose to live by faith. Choose to be a victor!

 

Posted in Purpose-driven achiever

Give God Your All

Image from: Pixabay..com
Image from: Pixabay..com

 

Has your life been a failure so far? God can change that! Have you enjoyed a measure of success? God can take you to a higher level of achievement! Want to maximise your potential? Make yourself available to God! He is able to do infinitely beyond your highest desires and dreams.

To read more please visit: https://apurposedrivenachiever.wordpress.com/2016/01/22/give-god-your-all/

 

PS: if you are so inclined, please leave your comments and/or likes in relation to this post  at my Purpose-driven achiever site. Thank you.

Posted in Blog posts

The Revelation Of Christ – 3 Keys To Experiencing His Presence And Power

CC0 Public Domain - Image from pixabay.com
CC0 Public Domain – Image from pixabay.com

 

For unto us a Child is born; unto us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder. These will be his royal titles: “Wonderful,” “Counsellor,” “The Mighty God,” “The Everlasting Father,” “The Prince of Peace.” His ever-expanding, peaceful government will never end. He will rule with perfect fairness and justice from the throne of his father David. He will bring true justice and peace to all the nations of the world. This is going to happen because the Lord of heaven’s armies has dedicated himself to do it! (Isaiah 9:6-7 – The Living Bible)

 

When God Speaks Are You Listening?

God’s prophetic word had been given. He was to send his Holy Son to the earth. And so the Messiah was expected by the Children of Israel. All were supposedly longing for and looking for his appearance.

But how were they looking?

Why did they miss his coming?

Why did they not recognise him when he finally came?

What distinguished those who “expected” Christ the Son of God and coming Messiah, from those who “experienced” him?

I’d like to suggest that those who heard about Jesus and were privileged to receive divine revelation regarding him and saw him manifested in the flesh, possessed three particular qualities. I’d like to suggest that if we in our day-to-day lives wish to be those who not only hear about Jesus but also “see him” (i.e. have a personal revelation of him) and experience his tangible presence, we also need to possess these attributes. I’d like to suggest that having an expectation of Christ’s miraculous intervention in our lives and having a desire to experience his rule, his counsel and his peace, is simply not enough. We must actively pursue and foster the following in our lives:

  1. Faith (Hebrews 11:6)
  2. Favour with God (Psalm 5:12)
  3. Fear of the Lord (Deuteronomy 10:12)

For years and years, Simeon waited patiently in faith for the manifestation of the Messiah (Luke 2:25-26). Mary, the mother of Jesus, found favour with God and was chosen to bring our Saviour into the world (Luke 1:26-28). The shepherds, as they went about their duties were favoured by the appearance of the angel of the Lord who told them about Jesus’ birth and these shepherds demonstrated faith by immediately acting upon what they’d been told (Luke 2:8-20). Anna showed utter devotion and reverence for God in that she opted to dwell daily in his presence, fasting and praying non-stop. Anna’s actions demonstrated her fear of the Lord (Luke 2:36-38).

When God Acts Are You Ready?

Bearing in mind the events surrounding Christ’s birth, let’s consider how we can apply these lessons to our own lives. Let us consider what can blind us to, or disqualify us from experiencing the presence of the Holy One?

  • Personal ambition, competitiveness and insecurity (Matthew 2:16)
  • Human perceptions, preconceived ideas and prejudices (Mark 6:1-3; John 7:40-43; Acts 1:6)
  • Lack of spiritual discernment (John 7:31, 45-52)
  • Religious dogma (Matthew 23:23-28)

You will note from the above examples that the religious leaders knew the prophecies and scriptures. However, their knowledge did not foster a genuine love-relationship with God. These religious leaders prioritised their limited sense-knowledge over the supernatural, over revelation knowledge, causing them to reject Jesus and even orchestrate his death.

You will also observe from the examples above that:

  • Herod felt so threatened by the news of this Child King, he sought to kill him.
  • The religious rulers were so caught up with observing their rules and rituals and presenting themselves as the spiritual authority, they resented Christ’s presence and power
  • The Jews were so blinkered by their personal knowledge of Jesus and their perception of him as “only one of us”, they were highly offended by and dismissed his Messianic claims.

These examples reveal how an inflexible, self-obsessed, or religious mindset can blind you to, or make you hostile towards the presence of Jesus, cutting you off from the very blessings for which you await (Mark 6:3-6).

When God Delays Are You Still Expectant?

Now, if you are looking and expecting God to manifest himself in and through your life this year, may I encourage you to:

  • Look at your circumstances with the eyes of faith
  • Expect the unexpected
  • Keep asking, praying, serving and worshipping whilst you wait upon him
  • Place yourself in, and maintain a position of “being in the know” (the secret of the Lord is with those who fear him – Psalm 25:14).

In Proverbs 1:7, the Amplified Bible describes the Fear of the Lord as reverent and worshipful, as the beginning, the principal and choice part of knowledge.

Do you reverence the Lord?

Herod did not – he was prepared to kill him!

The religious leaders did not – they revered their traditions and teachings above the one around whom those teachings/traditions were based, above the one for whom they waited. Serving God made them feel superior (Luke 18:9-12), so when the one whom they served finally arrived, they weren’t prepared to step aside for him – unlike John the Baptist who declared: I must decrease and He must increase (John 3:30).

Women of Warfare, let’s make sure we don’t fall into the same trap. Let’s make sure we are not so busy serving God and ministering to others that we don’t even recognise or welcome Jesus should he make a sudden visitation in our lives or communities. Let’s ensure we aren’t so concerned about the letter of the Law that we fail to allow God’s Word to dwell within us in a rich measure… that we miss the leading of His Holy Spirit.

Women of Warfare, let’s not be guilty of teaching, sharing, or praying God’s Word, yet shut the door of faith through which The Word himself longs to walk through, in order to manifest himself in supernatural ways and make a dynamic difference to our lives. Let’s develop and exercise our faith and court the favour of God in our lives. Let’s seek his face with diligence and walk humbly before Him in the Fear of the Lord.

 

Posted in Blog posts

Bye Bye 2015!

Image: CC0 Public Domain - Pixabay.com
Image: CC0 Public Domain – Pixabay.com

 

 

Life flows like a river. No matter what gets in the way, it flows on. It’s something meant to be enjoyed and cherished. But it’s always changing. And we can’t stick too long in the past, because then we lose sight of the beautiful future (source unknown).

  

Hello Women of Warfare! Welcome to a brand new year!

To embrace the new we need to let go of the old, so let’s bid goodbye to last year, even if necessary to the last decade. Let’s say goodbye to the past.

In Isaiah 43:18 we are told: Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old and in Philippians 3:13 the Apostle Paul declares that he is: …forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead.

Now when I say “forget”, I am not suggesting that the past will be miraculously erased from your memory. I am not suggesting that we have to live in denial. I am saying let’s make a conscious decision not to dwell in the past, particularly if that past is having a negative impact upon our current outlook and upon our future—particularly if remembering those things that are behind hinders us from seeing opportunities ahead, or hampers our growth and development as a child of God.

What does “forgetting” involve?

  • Not allowing your past to give you an inferiority complex (Paul – 1 Timothy 1:12-13)
  • Not agonising over past sins and moral failures (David – 2 Samuel 11:2-5, 14-17, 26-27; Psalm 51:1-17)
  • Not brooding over the rejection and/or betrayal of others (Joseph – Genesis 41:50-51; Genesis 45:4-5, )
  • Not condemning self when you fail to honour your professed allegiance to Christ (Peter – Matthew 26:33-35; Matthew 26:69-75; John 21:15-17)
  • Not holding onto your perceived pedigree (Paul – Philippians 3:4-6)
  • Not pining for the “good old days” (Children of Israel – Numbers 11:4-6)
  • Not resenting God’s sovereign acts, which may seem harsh from your human perspective (Aaron – Leviticus 10:1-7)
  • Not wallowing in self pity over a fait accompli, which has an adverse impact upon your life (Jephthah’s daughter – Judges 11:30-40).

Let me make it clear that there is absolutely no harm in looking back with a positive mindset, in order to review and reflect. However, we should not look back in such a manner that doing so results in us chastising ourselves, throwing a pity party, or retaining grudges.

As women of warfare, as prayer warriors, we are asked to lift up holy hands without wrath and without doubting (1 Timothy 2:8). So as well as letting go of negative memories, we need to let go of negative thoughts and behaviours, since these will affect our relationship with God, our effectiveness in serving others and our ability to live the abundant life for which Christ paid a high price, in order that we might enjoy.

Once we make that decision to forget and let go of the past, we can enjoy each new day as it comes. We can look forward to this new year and to our future with confidence.

Let me encourage you to remember and reflect upon the following words from our Heavenly Father: For I know the thoughts that I think toward you… thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).

Regards,

 

Carol

 

NB: Scripture references are taken from: Spirit Filled Life Bible NKJ version

Posted in Blog posts

Carol’s Christmas Greetings

Image: CC0 Public Domain - Pixabay.com
Image: CC0 Public Domain – Pixabay.com

 

Dear followers, friends and visitors

Thank you all so much for your kind support over the past few months. You will never know how much every visit, post read and comment or like received has touched my heart.

I send warmest greetings to you all and wish you happiness, joy, and peace over the coming holiday.

My prayers and thoughts are with you and the following is a gesture of my appreciation (please click on the link below):

http://andiesisle.com/thekingsproposal.html

If you enjoy this gift (as I am sure you will) why not treat yourself to a double portion of blessing?  Feel free to pop over to my other blog (Purpose-driven achiever) where I’ve posted another seasonal greeting and link.

May God richly bless you and may He grant you peace throughout the festive season as you celebrate with family and friends.

With love,

 

Carol

Posted in Meditation Bites

O Come Let Us Adore Him!

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Image: CC0 Public Domain – Pixabay.com

 

O Come…

Come. This requires us to leave our present situation, or move from our current location. It requires effort and a firm resolve on our part. It requires us to move from the position we are currently occupying – wherever that may be, whatever we may be doing. As well as it being a move from a physical place, it could also apply to a shift in our psychological state, or spiritual stance.

O Come…

The shepherds had to temporarily leave their duties in order to come. The wise men had to leave their country, their interest and preoccupation with astrology, their theories and text-book assumptions.

O Come…

Come. It requires us to respond to and accept an invitation. The invitation is to come, see and adore the Lord Jesus Christ. It requires humility – an admission that we don’t have it all… don’t know it all. It requires us to have ears to hear what God, or His servant, or the Holy Spirit is telling us. It requires us to let go of any desire to control our lives and be willing to take that journey, travel that path, which our Father God has predestined for us to walk in. It involves leaving our comfort zone.

O Come…

Come. What does it take for me or for you to respond to this invitation? What will it cost? It involves coming away from one location and arriving at another (usually an unknown), destination. It sometimes involves coming away from fear and arriving at a realisation of God’s unconditional love, or moving away from doubt and arriving at a place of faith. It could involve stepping away from a place of ignorance… from a place of passively waiting for the fulfilment of God’s promise(s), to a place of revelation… a resolve to passionately pursue the manifestation of God’s power.

What situation, paradigm, or religious stance do you need to come away from in order to “see” Jesus as Wonderful, Counsellor, Almighty God, Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace? (Isaiah 9:6)

What hindering mindset do you need to move away from in order to receive the rich resources of heaven, which Jesus’ birth has made available to you?  Will you come away from doubts and distractions and adore this holy child Jesus? Will you accept the invitation and come today, tomorrow, whenever, for whatever you may need? Will you approach him in humility, receive his precious offering of love, forgiveness and unqualified acceptance, adore him as your grace-giver, healer, intercessor and Saviour?

Dear reader, don’t hesitate, don’t listen to the voice of your arch enemy, don’t question, don’t doubt – just come!

Posted in Blog posts

A Spiritual Warrior’s Declaration

CC0 Public Domain – image from Pixabay.com

 

I am a victorious overcomer.

I’m taking back control. Yes. I’m taking back control of my life, of my state of mind… of my thought patterns… of my future… of me. I am taking back control. I have the power to do so because I’ve been given spiritual authority by the blessed and only Potentate—the King of kings and Lord of lords (1 Timothy 6:15 NKJ). He has granted me power of attorney to act on his behalf. He has entrusted me with the weapons of spiritual warfare – the name of Jesus, the blood of the Lamb, the Word of God.

Jehovah-Tsebaoth* is on my side. He has legions of angels at his command. He is the Lord of hosts. The resources of heaven and earth, yeah the entire universe is at his disposal and operates at his command.

God (my God), the omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent God, is supreme and superior. Satan is therefore no match for Him. How could he be? Satan was created by God. Therefore, in comparison with God, Mr Diablo is an inferior being. He, a mere member of creation, cannot be greater than the Creator! This emboldens me.

No weapon forged against me, thrown at me, designed to disempower me, provoke me, alienate me (whatever!), can be irredeemably successful in its intention. I have an impregnable shield around me. It is the shield of faith. I have a highly potent substance which covers me from the crown of my head to the soles of my feet. It is the precious, efficacious blood of Jesus. Satan and his cohorts have no immunity against the blood of Jesus (Hallelujah!). And because I dwell in the secret place of the most high (through regular fellowship with Father God), I am hidden under the shadow of His protective wings.

Yay! I am not a victim. I am a victor. I am an overcomer. I am an anointed woman of God, a spiritual warrior. I choose to reign over my circumstances – they will not reign over me. They will not crush me into a place of impotence, or permanent defeat. I will not allow them to push me into a place of perpetual despair, discouragement or distress. I will not allow my circumstances to cower, or imprison me within Fear’s hostile habitation. I am a victor!

Heaven and earth may pass away but God’s Word will never, ever pass away. His covenant with me will not (indeed cannot) be broken!

The Lord my God is Yahweh. He is Jehovah. He is the great I AM. He is not like mere man. He does not lie. He is not flummoxed by what the future brings because he stands at the edge of time. He inhabits the very eras throughout all eternity. He knows the end from the beginning. He knows the destiny he has planned and earmarked for me. Therefore Father God (my God) cannot make me promises, which circumstances he did not expect or foresee (I speak in jest!), render him incapable of fulfilling.

Unlike politicians, my Father God does not make promises he cannot keep. He does not have ulterior motives that benefit only him. He is not disingenuous. He is holy. He is gracious. He is generous-hearted. Yeah, he is just, merciful, full of love and altogether lovely. He is my God!

How wonderful that he should care about me, about my progress, about my future. How wonderful that he should watch over me, treat and keep me as the apple of his eye. How wonderful that He even cares about the sparrows, feeds them and is aware of each one’s fate – that’s how loving, how caring, committed and mindful my Heavenly Father is of his creation.

Well, I am the crowning glory of his creation. I am his poetic masterpiece. He therefore sees me as so much more valuable than the sparrows. So much so, He even knows the number of hairs on my head. How mind-blowing is that!

My God is for me. He loves me. He has made generous provision for me. His individual thoughts concerning me (should I be able to count them), are more numerous than the grains of sand. He desires intimate fellowship with me and delights when I come into his holy presence – me! His banner over me is LOVE. He loves me and loves me unconditionally.

There have been poems, plays, songs and stories about love – “true” love, unrequited love, puppy love – but the greatest love story, is revealed in the greatest book – the book of all books. It is the love of all loves. It is sacrificial, unconditional, everlasting. It is the agape love of God for mankind (or humankind – if you have a problem with masculine language). It is the agape love of God for you and for me. He is love. He is LOVE!

And so, His love for me makes me more than a conqueror. His love for me makes me an overcomer. Therefore, I can boldly declare that I am not a victim – I am a victor!

*Jehovah-Tsebaoth = The Lord of hosts

 

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What declarations of faith do you use to encourage yourself?

 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Man Down!

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Do not rejoice over me, my enemy; When I fall, I will arise… (Micah 7:8)

 

If you’re familiar with the various types of cop dramas on TV, the above phrase will not be unfamiliar to you. For those of you who do not recognise, or know what this phrase means, it is used by the police fraternity to inform other members that one of their own has been shot, maybe even fatally wounded.

I want to borrow that phrase and apply it to the wounded saints and warriors within God’s Kingdom. I want to flag up those people within the Body of Christ (including myself), who are currently hurting, particularly those serving at the frontline as prayer warriors, or ministry leaders. Man down!

There are men and women, who in the line of duty have been targeted by the Enemy. His aim is to distract, discourage and dishonour. Man down!

I have walked with the Lord for a few decades now. My particular path, foreordained by God, has been an arduous, rough and largely lonely one, since friends are few, family members are preoccupied and the fellowship of believers oft times cliquey. Apart from the companionship of my husband, it’s been a solitary pilgrimage. In picking up my cross to follow Christ, I’ve traversed a hostile terrain, one charted by sustained unpopularity and systematic assassination of my character. Man down!

My path has led me into Enemy territory – towards mountains of adversity, across the Great Sea of Sorrow and through the Valley of Achor*. Man down!

I have cried over the perpetual and malicious cycle of mockery, scorn and derision. I’ve sighed at the shrine of sabotaged dreams, mourned at the monument of missed opportunities and crawled in the dust of punctured self-esteem. Man down!

No doubt, as I continue along this pathway, I will still at times struggle with seasons of self-pity, still have to wrestle with promises-of-God fatigue and still have to cope with days of despair.

But…

I know without a shadow of doubt that no matter how many times I must circle the desert because of disobedience, no matter how many times I must walk through the wilderness because of wilful rebellion, no matter how often I must engage with the Enemy of my soul who prowls and roars, waiting to pounce on his prey – because the Lord my God is with me, I will arise (Micah 7:8).

I know that when I choose to discard the spirit of heaviness and wrap myself within the garments of praise, God’s strength will empower me to rejoice in him (Philippians 4:4), to continue to rejoice in hope and to be patient during trials and tribulation (Romans 12:12). Warrior arise!

I know that when I tear my eyes away from my circumstances and keep them focused upon the God of my salvation and upon his promises, He will keep me in perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3). Warrior arise!

I know that whenever I call upon him, my awesome God will rend the heavens, ride upon the wings of a swift wind and rescue me from the schemes, snares and strategies of Satan (2 Samuel 22:7-20). Warrior arise!

I know that my God will cause all things (the good, the bad, and the ugly!) to work together for my benefit (Romans 8:28). Warrior arise!

I know that because Jesus loves me, and laid down his precious, sinless life for me, I am more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37). Warrior arise!

I know that no weapon forged against me will prosper, that the weapons of my warfare are not carnal but mighty in God and are capable of pulling down strongholds (Isaiah 54:17; 2 Corinthians 10:4). Warrior arise!

And because I know that greater is he that is within me than he that is in the world (1 John 4:4), because I know Jesus has given me authority over all the power of the Enemy (Luke 10:19), I have determined in my heart (whether I walk through green pastures, or through the valley of the shadow of death), I will put on my spiritual armour. I will take my place on the battlefield of prayer and I will resist the wiles of the evil one. I will stand in the strength and might of my God and assert the victory of Christ’s resurrection life and power (Ephesians 6:10-11).

I will, as God’s flawed but feisty warrior get up from the dust heap of defeat and discouragement—and I will arise!

 

*Valley of trouble (see Joshua 7:24-26)

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Be Thankful! (Re-visited)

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Do you remember the hymn “We plough the fields and scatter the good seed on the ground”? It’s been a long time since I sang this.  I recall that this song was a firm favourite at Harvest Festival services. The days have come and gone so fast, I didn’t even realise this annual church event (which provides a prime opportunity for thanksgiving) had already passed.

Towards the end of this month, US citizens will celebrate Thanksgiving Day. And another occasion, which provides us with good reason to be thankful, is Remembrance Day, or Veterans’ Day (depending on whether you live in the UK or the USA).  After all, if it were not for these war heroes, war veterans and serving officers of the armed forces, perhaps we who currently enjoy the privilege of “free speech” and live in a democratic society, would be suffering like other unfortunate nationals who live in countries oppressed by communist rule, or unscrupulous dictators.

I find I cannot help but continue to reflect on the subject of gratitude and appreciation to God. As we saw in my previous post (Be Thankful!), the writer in Psalm 107 bemoans the fact we humans tend to forget, or choose not to be thankful to God. And so may I ask you – on average how thankful to God are you most of the time – 80%? 75%? Less than 50%? Now another question – how often do you express your gratitude?

If I spent time, effort and money on a gift for someone and they simply took it, said their thanks within their hearts but did not verbally express this to me, how would I know they appreciated it?

Now I know God is omniscient and knows us even better than we know ourselves. I realise he can read our thoughts anyway (Psalm 139:1-4). But this does not excuse a habitual failure to express gratitude and appreciation to him. As we also saw in my last post, God expects us to remember his goodness towards us and express appreciation for his provision and protection.

So again, I ask (my apologies if I seem to be labouring the point), how thankful are you and how often do you verbally express that gratitude to God?

I don’t mean the careless, formulaic, superficial, said-out-of-duty or politeness type of thanks. And I am not referring to the auto-pilot response made to a praise and worship prompt in a church setting.

I’m talking about genuine, deep-hearted gratitude. The type that stems from a sense of wonder and questions what you have done to deserve such blessings and favour. The type that makes you marvel at God’s goodness towards you and feel doubly grateful that he is – despite your failings and unfaithfulness (Psalm 8:3-4). The type that brings tears to your eyes, as you remember God’s goodness at a time you least deserved it. The type of thanks that causes your voice to break as you recall what he has done for you, particularly those miraculous answers to prayers, which you had no idea how they could possibly be answered when you sent them winging towards his heavenly throne. I’m referring to the heartfelt expression that forms a lump in your throat, as you attempt to voice your appreciation to Father God for His mercies and unconditional love.

Do you need convincing about the benefits and impact of maintaining a thankful attitude – not only to yourself but also to the lives of others?

Let’s turn to Genesis 6:5-8; Genesis 8:15-22; Genesis 9:8-17.

When Noah leaves the ark after the flood, the first thing he did was to offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving. It so pleased God that he made a covenant to never again destroy every living thing, even though he was aware that men’s hearts will continually incline towards evil. The rainbow was God’s physical reminder of the covenant promise he made to Noah in response to this man’s expression of gratitude.

Now when you consider God wiped out Sodom and Gomorrah, when you consider that the antediluvian world was utterly destroyed and when you consider the darkness and depravity of our own world today – if it had not been for Noah’s act of appreciation, how many more times would the wrath of God have been incurred? How many more times would both man and beast have been annihilated from the face of the earth? A sobering thought.

Does  it not make you thankful?

Posted in Blog posts

Be Thankful!

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Protocol:

  • The customs and regulations dealing with diplomatic formality, precedence, and etiquette (Dictionary.com)
  • The forms of ceremony and etiquette observed by diplomats and heads of state

Or

  • A code of correct conduct (The Free Dictionary)

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When Queen Esther walked into the king’s presence without being summoned, she breached the protocol of Persia’s royal court. Doing so, could very well incur the penalty of death. Aware of this, she declared with boldness and determination “…if I perish, I perish!” (Esther 4:16 NKJ).

Fast forward to today’s world, with particular focus on the United Kingdom and Commonwealth, and we discover that an archaic code of conduct still operates within the Royal circle. So when it comes to greeting members of the British Monarchy, the media have been quick to report breaches of protocol by individuals who touch the Queen, or other members of the royal household, in what is deemed to be over-familiar ways. At best, it is seen as a faux pas, at worst, a lack of respect. So bystanders were amazed when the Queen herself dispensed with royal etiquette and placed an arm around the US First Lady, Michelle Obama, at a Buckingham Palace reception.

Did you know there is a protocol for entering into God’s Holy presence?

When instituting the laws of sacrifice, thanksgiving and worship, God gave the Children of Israel a set of rules for approaching him. If breached, the penalty was instant death (see Leviticus 10:1-3 NKJ). Later, when Jesus was crucified at Calvary, his death brought an end to the fear and trepidation associated with God’s presence. Dispensing with protocol (only an appointed priest could enter into his presence), God tore the temple veil from top to bottom, granting unprecedented access into the Holy of Holies, into His royal throne room (Mark 15:37-38 NKJ).

Psalm 100:4 highlights the protocol for entering into our Heavenly Father’s presence. Over 2,000 years later, I believe this instruction is just as valid today.  We are commanded to:

“Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,

And into His courts with praise.

Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.”

We are being asked to come into God’s Holy presence with grateful thanks for what He has done. We are being asked to acknowledge and appreciate Him for who he is.

In Psalm 107, the psalmist complains no less than four times about the common tendency of mortals to take God’s goodness for granted (see verses 8, 15, 21 and 31). Unfortunately, it would seem that just as it was in the days of antiquity, so ingratitude to God features as a failing of our modern times.

Now, if people fail to thank me for a gift I’ve given, or a good deed done, it offends me. I’m pretty sure that you are no different. Well, if we, as fallible humans, appreciate common courtesies and recognition of our benevolent acts, then how much more our Heavenly Father, who is unstinting in his unconditional love, care and provision? In fact, we know from the laws set out in Leviticus that acknowledging his goodness and expressing gratitude to him was something He expected from the Children of Israel (see Leviticus 7:11-15).

The thanksgiving (or peace) offering was a free will sacrifice (Leviticus 19:5). In other words, although God expected his chosen people to be thankful to him, it would be their choice whether or not they actually expressed this. After all, nobody wants to be on the receiving end of token appreciation, or enforced thanks.

Which brings me to the point of self-examination. If we are honest, whether in our private or public devotions, there are times when we do not always feel thankful, or overflowing with gladness and gratitude. We may be feeling bewildered by circumstances, devastated by broken dreams, frozen with fear. And so we become preoccupied with protecting, or licking our internal wounds.

It is at such times that the offering of joyful thanks and praise to our Father God becomes a sacrifice – something that costs us mentally and emotionally – yet something that God highly prizes. At times like these, we need to resist our pain and swallow our disappointments, in order to “bless the Lord at all times” and allow genuine praise to flow continually from our mouths (Psalm 34:1 NKJ).

Do you regularly offer thanks to the Lord? Do you frequently express sincere appreciation and gratitude to him?

Hebrew 13:15 (NKJ) exhorts: “…let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name.” During Biblical times, sacrifices had to be the very best you could offer. Anything less was considered an insult to God (see Malachi 1:6-8, 13-14). In today’s context, as worshippers, even though there may be periods where we are depressed, disappointed or disillusioned, this cannot and does not justify us offering lacklustre praise to the Lord.

So ask yourself – have I been, or am I guilty of auto pilot praise?

In this dispensation of grace, what a privilege we believers have been given that we can come without prior appointment, without the need of a third party, into God’s holy presence and in the knowledge that we are both acceptable and welcome.

What a blessing that we can step into our awesome God’s throne room without fear, without guilt and without an inferiority complex, knowing we are worthy because of the precious blood of his Son Jesus.

What a prestigious honour we’ve been granted, to be able to have an audience with the Holy One, with the Most High God, appeal to him for our needs, intercede on behalf of others and share our desires, dreams or problems, knowing that instead of incurring his wrath, He will place his loving arms around us.

On that note, let me close with the following:

I will extol you, my God, O King;

And I will bless your name forever and ever (Psalm 145:1)

Oh, magnify the Lord with me,

And let us exalt His name together (Psalm 34:3).

Posted in Blog posts

All Hallows Eve – Celebrate!

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Halloween. It’s that time of the year again where witches and warlocks roam the earth – and I’m not referring to the ghoulish fancy-dressed men, women, boys and girls who indulge in Halloween parties and neighbourhood trick-or-treat visits.

I’m referring to the spiritual underworld, comprising evil spirit beings and their flesh-and-blood counterparts, who gather in covens and secret societies to worship Satan, practice their noxious arts and target Christian leaders.

Edmund Burke once said:

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (and women) to do nothing.

So what can we do?

We can repossess this 2-day event, which Pope Gregory III had appropriated for the Church calendar. No need to stand helpless and watch the Enemy commandeer this historically hallowed occasion for his purpose.

As women of warfare we can resist Satan’s insidious ploys to spoil, sully and snuff out the lives of God’s creative masterpiece – us! Men, women and children put on this earth to reign, rule and usher in His Kingdom of righteousness. We can thwart our Enemy’s attempts to extend the reach of his foul kingdom.

How?

We can PARTY:

Hold a Hallelujah party. You can make it low key, or a full blown fiesta – the choice is yours. Make it a time of celebration, fun and thanksgiving. It can be adults only, include children, or it can be a private affair – just you and the Lord.

Can’t have a party on your own you say? Yes, you can! It’s a wonderful opportunity to get together with God, link up with Jesus and become better acquainted with the Holy Spirit. And anyway, who says you can’t party on your own? How many times have you held a pity party? Did you invite anyone else along? No? I rest my case!

We can PRAY:

Ask God to divinely protect you, your loved ones, colleagues, friends and neighbours. Stand in the gap for members of your local fellowship, prominent Christian leaders and their families.

Entreat your Heavenly Father to protect your nation, to avert or diffuse any hidden dangers within its borders. Plead the protection of the precious blood of Jesus over your district’s transport network, seas and skies, school grounds and university campuses.

Petition Abba Father to grant journeying mercies to your friends and loved ones. Request peace, divine protection and an assurance of his presence for overseas missionaries.

Solicit Almighty God to deliver you from the schemes, snares and strategies of Satan.

Thank Jehovah for his daily mercies, for preserving our lives to date, for granting us authority over all the power of the Enemy and for his promise that the gates of hell cannot and will not prevail against the church that is established upon revelation truth.

We can PROCLAIM:

At Hallelujah parties or church gatherings, speak out with boldness. Shout your praise declarations. Pay tribute to the goodness of our great God. Encourage and make room for your children to do the same. After all, Psalm 8:2 (NKJ) says:

Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants

You have ordained *strength (i.e. praise)

Because of Your enemies,

That you may silence the enemy and the avenger.

*According to the Greek Bible from which Jesus quoted, a better translation of the word “strength” is praise.

Dear reader, please understand, I am not denying the underlying darkness of this cultural tradition. I am simply saying enough is enough! Why should we continue to allow our voice to be silenced, the Christian heritage of our nations to be eroded? I’m saying let’s take a stand. Let’s frustrate the forces of darkness with our praise, our prayers and our proclamations.

Instead of shunning this day as a time of consummate evil, let’s seize this moment, this opportunity, as another occasion to celebrate our Lord, who triumphed over the devil and over his realm of death and destruction.

To the children/parents that come knocking at your door this year, why not add a spiritual element to any treats you offer? For UK residents, you can take advantage of a free resource, The Bag of hope, available from United Christian Broadcasters (UCB). There is no limit to the number you can order. However, post and packing charges will apply.

For those not residing in the UK, perhaps you can obtain some simple tracts, or other Christian resources for children and make little goody-bags. Whichever option you choose, pray over these bespoke bags, asking God to prepare the hearts of recipients, so they are open to His gospel message.

Finally, share this post and spread the word to your Christian friends, family, followers and social media connections. Help make the weekend of 30 October – 1 November 2015, the biggest celebration of our King of kings, and Lord of lords. He is surely worthy – don’t you think?

WARNING: please ensure that you seek God’s divine protection in accordance with Psalm 91 and apply the blood of Jesus to your life and the lives of your loved ones, before attempting to battle with the Enemy and his evil forces of darkness.

Posted in Blog posts

I’m still standing!

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Are you standing in the dignity and strength of God, or wallowing in the slough of despondency?  I’d like to think that in the face of the Enemy, in the face of any problems you may be encountering that you are defiantly declaring to yourself and to anyone who cares to listen: “You know what?  I’m still standing!” And I’d like to think that even if you are not yet in that place, you have every intention of getting there – soon.

A few months ago on my way to work, I passed a tree where a white van had crashed into it. As a result of the crash, the bark of this tree was stripped away in several places. It had become scarred by the accident.  Now whilst the white van was a complete write-off, the tree into which it crashed still stands erect in its position. Granted, it is not as it was before, for now it bears the scars of a collision.

The Bible often refers to us as trees (see Psalm 1:3 and Jeremiah 17:7-8). Using that metaphor and combining it with the above-mentioned accident, if we were to bring these into the context of our every-day lives as believers, we could say that life sometimes crashes into us, yet we survive – and like this tree, we can remain standing. Similarly, when life crashes into us we bear those scars of collision. But whether the scars we bear are scars of bitterness, or scars of bitter experience depends upon us and upon our attitudes.

Whenever I pass this tree, I note the scars it received did not undermine its ability to function as a tree. I noted that it still held its branch arms outstretched to the heavens. It did not hold its arms down by its side in defeat or self-pity. And although anyone passing could clearly see its scars, no one would consider it as no longer a tree, or a lesser one, or inadequate in any way.

I believe we can learn a lesson from this. Yes, we may bear the scars of rejection, or tragedy, or a personal world that has caved in but in God’s eyes we are no less a person, no less his precious child. Can you accept this? Can you embrace this truth for yourself? Can you ignore the devil’s taunts, which whisper in your innermost being telling you that you are a helpless victim… that nobody loves you… that no one cares whether you live or die, whether you flourish or wither? Can you get up from, and lever yourself out of, that mental pit of misery?

And, as occasion demands, will you don your spiritual armour, or wrap yourself within the garment of praise and allow God to heal and revive your wounded spirit? Will you trust Him to cause all the awful, unjust and undeserved things that have devastated you, to work together for your good? Will you stop trying to work out how this will happen and when? Will you stop discouraging yourself because you can’t see how this can possibly work out in your, or your loved-ones’ favour? Can you stop peering with short-sighted pessimism into your future with those sorrow-tinted spectacles and instead, look at your situation with the clear bright eyes of faith?

Could you give God a chance to work his magic, to summon his majestic might on your behalf by stepping out of the way?

You can!

Of course you can. You can do all things through Christ who strengthens, empowers and invigorates you.

Remember, the one who strengthens you has gone through worse than you can ever experience or imagine. He has endured rejection and scars so horrendous that they make yours and mine look like mere blemishes by comparison (not that I’m belittling what anyone has suffered, or is currently going through). In Isaiah 53:5 we are told that:

 …He was wounded for our transgressions,

He was bruised for our iniquities;

The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,

And by His stripes we are healed.

He did all this for me, all this for you. Why? Because he loved and loves me.   Because he loved and loves you. Because he wanted to show us by his experience that we can make it… that there is nothing any person, or any demonic being can do, which can curtail, or permanently thwart the will, plan and purpose of God for our lives, if we refuse to give in to our flesh and we stand our ground.

So, going back to my earlier questions – can you let go and let God? You can, because God’s Word says you can. The pertinent question therefore is: will you? Will you let go of your terms and submit to His?

Proverbs 3:5 says:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

And lean not on your own understanding.

In order to trust God, we need to have unwavering faith, or confidence in Him. He just loves it when we do. And when we do, we put ourselves into the right position to become green, flourishing and firmly-rooted trees. When we do, we put ourselves into the right position to lead fruitful lives. When we do, we can hold our heads erect and sing the high praises of God.

Dear reader, let us make up our minds to stand in God’s grace and mercy, stand in his protective power, stand in his unparalleled favour, to stand (and keep on standing) in his perfect will for our lives.  Yes – let us rejoice in the fact that despite what the Enemy has thrown at us and meant for our demise, we are indeed, still standing!

Posted in Blog posts

The Power of Perspective

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I used to see squirrels as cute creatures. Like other people, I enjoyed watching these tame animals scamper around park grounds, leap from bough to branch of a tree, or enjoy the adoration and hospitality of children. On occasion, I’d even feed them nuts or scraps from my picnic fare.

As far as I was concerned, squirrels were fully paid up members of an acceptable community of creatures (unlike flying ants, snakes or spiders). That was until I read that they came from the rodent family. All of a sudden, my perspective changed. I now saw these creatures as giant rats with bushy tails. In my heart and mind they were re-classified as vermin. And, when I became a gardening enthusiast, well that was it! I disliked them even more and promptly added them to my personal category of “mega-annoying animals”.

Just like that, my positive perspective of squirrels changed to a negative one. Knowledge contributed to that change.

Did you know that knowledge of God can alter your perception of any adverse situation you may be facing? Not head knowledge (mere mental assent) but heart knowledge, revelation knowledge.

God desires that we “know” Him (i.e. become intimately acquainted with him). John 17:3 reveals that eternal life is knowing the only true God and his Son, Jesus Christ, whilst Daniel 11:32b declares that those who know their God will be strong and carry out great exploits for Him. I like to think of some of those exploits as something prayer warriors accomplish – either conducting bold combative resistance against the Enemy of our souls, or presenting passionate petitions to our Father in the court room of Heaven.

Whatever difficulty we may be facing in our lives, or whatever circumstance we may be enduring, we need the strength of God to be able to overcome and emerge a victor.

If you are in a good place right now (experiencing no distressing worries), then wonderful! Great! Why not use your spiritual strength to encourage, pray for and support others? Is there a colleague, a neighbour, a friend or family member who is ill? In debt? Experiencing an insurmountable problem? Can you come alongside them and help? Will you show them the compassion and love of Jesus by supporting them with your prayers and intercession?

If you are already doing this – excellent! Continue the great work.

I faced a situation a little while back, where someone sought to unjustly penalise and discredit me. It undermined my peace. I called upon my best friend and her husband to stand with me in prayer. They also enlisted the help of their prayer group.

Fear and negativity had skewed my perspective regarding my circumstances. However, these godly friends were able to share scriptures with me, which changed that perspective. They could not have done this without their own knowledge of God, gained through their personal relationship with him. They could not have done this without a knowledge of his Word. And I could not have accepted the rhema* word God gave to me through them, I could not have been comforted and strengthened, if I had not previously acquired personal knowledge of his attributes, loving nature and character.

“The only thing you sometimes have control over is perspective. You don’t have control over your situation. But you have a choice about how you view it.” Chris Pine

Just suppose you were drowning and someone dived in to help you, someone whom you knew could not swim and had a fear of water, would you be confident that person could save you? Now substitute that individual with someone whom you know to be a champion swimmer and your perspective of the predicament you are in changes. Your confidence in his/her ability to help you, perhaps even save your life, increases.

Similarly, in times of trouble, your experiential knowledge of God, gained through intimate acquaintance with him will make all the difference as to whether you sink below your problems, wade/swim fearlessly through them, or should the occasion demand, allow Father God to rescue you. Furthermore, what you triumphantly overcome today, equips and enables you to help others tomorrow.

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God promises: When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you… (Isaiah 43:2a)

Dear reader, let me ask you something: how well do you know God? What steps are you taking to increase your knowledge of him?

 

* Rhema = a specific promise from the Word of God, brought to mind by the Holy Spirit

Posted in Blog posts

Love Letter from your Father

An Open letter from our Heavenly Father to his wounded daughters in the Body of Christ

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My dear precious child in Christ,

Do you know how much I love you?

Maybe you do on a superficial level but you do not appreciate just how much I love you, the extent, the depth, the height. How could you? It is really beyond human comprehension. As my Word declares, my thoughts and ways are higher than your thoughts, your ways (Isaiah 55:8-9). But believe me beloved daughter – I truly, truly love you. Unconditionally. Absolutely. No strings attached. Nothing you say, do, or think will change how I feel about you.

How do I feel about you? I see you as precious. More precious than gold… than pearls… than diamonds… than all the things that this world deems as valuable. I have proved it – in that even when you were not aware of me, thought nothing of me, cared nothing about me, I sent my Son to die for you, so that we can be reconciled (Romans 5:8-10), so that I can make you my beneficiary, a joint heir with my Son Jesus (Romans 8:16-17). I want you to know there is nothing you can do, say, feel… nothing the Enemy can do, which can separate you from the deep genuine love I have for you (Romans 8:35-39). Nothing! Believe it and accept it and walk in the truth of it. Ask my Holy Spirit to reveal this fact to you in a way you can understand, absorb, accept and appropriate. I love you.  I. Love. You.

Dearest daughter, I see you. Your struggles, your hurts, your confusion, your loneliness. I see your indecision. Your disappointments and disillusionment with life, with me even, with those things you had imagined would bring you security and fulfilment. I see you. I know you. I hurt with you. Let me walk with you. Let me help you. Let me enfold you within my loving protection, within the safety of my arms and within the security of my Kingdom.

Don’t doubt my love for you. Unquestioning love eradicates fear (1 John 4:18). Fear robs you of all that I have planned for you since before you were even conceived. Yes, I planned for you to be here. I’ve planned your future (Jeremiah 29:11). So take my hand, trust me, walk with me and I will guide you, grant you the wisdom and the confidence and the tenacity to reach the end of your journey. But my daughter, I would not have you just focus on the end prize alone, on achieving that goal, on reaching your destiny. I would have you enjoy every step along the way.

And I would have you fight (because you will have to fight). Yeah, I would have you fight with confidence, with courage, with determination. For I have already given you the victory (1 Corinthians 15:57). Do you believe it? Do you believe my Word? Will you trust me? Will you agree that I know best and have given you my best and that your welfare is a primary concern on my heart – even when there are days and seasons where it seems the very opposite? Will you come on this lifetime adventure with me and, like Abraham (your forefather of faith), trust me to keep my promises (Romans 4:16, 20-21) and lead you through the unknown? Will you?

My dear precious one, faith is your title deed (Hebrews 11:1 *Amp). A title deed cannot be denied. It cannot be refuted. It cannot be ignored. Check that title deed often. Review it. Be confident that you already own the promises written in my Word (2 Corinthians 1:20). Circumstances, or the Enemy, or unbelief will deny this… challenge this. But you have a choice. A choice to agree with me, or agree with whatever, or whomever would challenge my Word. Have I not set before you, life and death (Deuteronomy 30:19), blessing and cursing? Choose Life. Choose Blessing. Choose Me!

Never doubt it. I love you. I. Love. You.

*Amp = Amplified Bible

Posted in Blog posts

Potential Prayer Warriors

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Queen Boadicea

What do you think about when you consider a warrior? Do you see someone like Boadicea? Deborah the prophetess, or David in the Bible? How about yourself? No? Well why not?

The Bible says the Kingdom of God suffers violence and the violent take it by force (Matthew 11:12). Of course it’s not saying you are to go out and mug anyone! It does however imply there will be a perpetual fight on our hands. Ephesians 6:11-18 is even more enlightening. It states categorically that we are in a fight and that our fight is not with humans but with evil spirit beings – super-powers!  Aargh! Potentially scary stuff!

Yet there’s no need to be afraid. We’ve been given spiritual armour and this armour not only protects us, but also enables us to go on the offensive against the Enemy (aka Satan). Once you are on a battlefield there is no going back. Once you are confronted with the enemy, there is no retreating. You have to stay, fight and conquer, or you could end up getting wounded, or even die.

Whether you like it or not, believe it or not, as Christian women we are in a battle.  By virtue of the fact that we are Born-again believers, Disciples of Christ, Followers of God, that makes us the Enemy’s target. And so we have no choice but to fight (either that or risk being trampled on). The great news for us is, it is not a fair fight! We have already been given the victory. Jesus did that for us. We merely have to enforce that victory because believe me the Enemy will not give up, or lay down and die. He’s been around a long time. He’s aware that some of us don’t really know who we are in Christ, or realise the authority and power we have been given, or that some of us don’t have the tenacity to stay the course. And so, even though he knows we have the advantage, he calls our bluff. He tests us. He attempts to wear us down. And we can be our own worst enemies.

We fail to turn up to training camp, or we forget/fail to employ what we learned in training camp. We are afraid our weapons will not work, or that our authority will be flouted (Jesus I know and Paul I know but who are you?). And when the Enemy resists us (because really, what enemy is not going to give it all he can in order to win – even if he is outnumbered, or knows he has already lost?), I repeat, when the Enemy resists us, we fail to stand our ground and inadvertently or voluntarily give it up. And of course Satan is going to take it. If the boot was on the other foot wouldn’t you?

But giving up that ground is costly. That ground represents you, your loved ones, your church members, those people within the sphere of your influence. People who may not survive, or flourish, or escape eternal damnation without your prayers. That ground represents your God-given dreams and aspirations. And so, I would encourage and exhort you dear precious women of God to become women of warfare. Like the apostle Paul, I would urge you to lay hold of eternal life, to fight the good fight of faith and keep on fighting. Get violent (i.e. get fervid and forceful). Take what belongs to you (your blessings, your destiny, your joy and peace of mind, your victorious overcoming lifestyle) and hold onto it with all your might. Grab that spoil. Dance your victory. Sing your songs of triumph. Shout your testimonies regarding the goodness and greatness of God – like Miriam, like David, like Deborah.

Don’t be afraid because the Lord your God is with you. You are more than a conqueror – this means you have already won! I repeat. Get violent. Vent your godly fury against the Enemy and his cohorts. You have the members of the Godhead on your side. You have legions of angels surrounding you. You have a great cloud of witnesses (our predecessors of faith) cheering from the sidelines. So, go girl! Go get (and hold on to) the abundant life you deserve.