Pursuing Genuine Godliness

 

The above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

What springs to your mind when you think of the word “godliness”?

Do you think of religious people who have a “holier than thou” attitude?

Do you think of weird biblical characters, such as John the Baptist, who lived out in the wilderness and dined on locusts and wild honey?

Or do you think of modern-day saints, such as the late Mother Teresa?

Have you ever considered yourself as “godly” and if not, why not?

Having checked my dictionary, I note that the word “godly” is defined as follows:

religious,

pious

(Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)

 

To me, those two words have negative connotations.

The late Bob Gass, writer of the UCB Word For Today* devotional, said this:

Godliness is an inside job. And the longer you think about it, the more convinced you become that a truly godly person is one whose heart is sensitive to God, who takes God and his Word seriously, and who desires more of Him.

 

And so dear friends, godliness is not an outside job!

Contrary to how others may have defined it, godliness is not determined by whether or not you wear hats, make-up, jewellery, or dresses that cover you from throat to toes. It is not embracing a poverty mind-set and maintaining a frugal or permanently penurious existence.

Godliness is a matter of the heart, a matter of your will.

Now God’s Word tells us that his eyes move throughout the earth, seeking those whose hearts are perfect towards him.

For the eyes of the Lord search back and forth across the whole earth, looking for people whose hearts are perfect toward him, so that he can show his great power in helping them.

2 Corinthians 16:9 – The Living Bible

 

Now that word “perfect” does not mean faultless, never making any mistakes in our relationship with him or with others. It points to a fundamental mindset, desire and drive, to love God with all our hearts, live aligned to his Word and purpose and make him the “be all and end all” of our lives.

On the basis of these two definitions, how do you measure up?

And, if you were to consider a biblical character that lived up to these ideals, who springs to your mind?

I don’t know about you, but the person who immediately impresses me as someone who loved God unreservedly and served him wholeheartedly, is David.

The following extracts from the Bible, grants us insight into David’s relationship with God:

As a deer pants for the water brooks,

So pants my soul for You, O God.

(Psalm 41:1)

 

Do not cast me away from Your presence,

And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.

(Psalm 51:11)

 

Because your lovingkindness is better than life,

My lips shall praise You.

(Psalm 63:3)

 

Search me, O God, and know my heart;

Try me and know my anxieties;

And see if there is any wicked way in me,

And lead me in the way everlasting.

(Psalm 139:23-24)

 

The Psalms is littered with many more expressions similar to the above extracts and just reading these reveal David’s utter commitment and devotion towards God. They form a picture of his godliness and portrays what a godly heart and mindset entails.

We see that it incorporates, a love and hunger for God, a passionate and perpetual desire to please and honour Him, entwined with a holy reverence for Him.

If you would like to explore the subject of godliness further, I recommend this excellent article. Please click here.

I conclude today’s post with an extract from the above recommended article, written by the author, Jerry Bridges:

This is the heartbeat of the godly person. As he contemplates God in the awesomeness of his infinite majesty, power, and holiness, and then as he dwells upon the riches of God’s mercy and grace poured out at Calvary, his heart is captivated by this One who could love him so. He is satisfied with God alone, but he is never satisfied with his present experience of God. He always yearns for more.

 

If you enjoyed the article, or would like to read the book from which this extract has been drawn, you can purchase Bridge’s book, The Practice of Godliness, from Amazon – here.

 Now let us pray.

 

Prayer Focus:

Let’s ask God to stir up within our hearts and within the hearts of our brothers and sisters in Christ, a fervent, genuine and increasing desire for godliness.

PS: Now don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield of prayer!

 

PRAYER:

Father God,

Again and again, throughout your Word, I see your heart’s desire is to enjoy an ongoing fellowship with your people.

I see it as you walked in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve. I see it in your relationship with Enoch, where you both enjoyed such a rich and rewarding fellowship with each other, you decided to bring him home with you to heaven!

I see it in your forming a nation for yourself from the enslaved children of Israel and I see it in your abounding love and amazing generosity of heart, in purchasing my redemption and setting aside a group of people similarly redeemed, which make up the Body of Christ.

Father God, I don’t want to be like those whom Paul decried as having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof.

I want to experience every facet of godliness and I desire genuine godliness to be the hallmark of my relationship with you. I pray that my brothers and sisters in Christ will have a similar burning desire.

Holy Spirit, I’m aware that this is not going to happen through my own might or willpower. And so I’m inviting you to come alongside me and help me.

I’m asking that you create an ongoing and increasing hunger and thirst for the knowledge and presence of God, both in myself and in my brothers and sisters in Christ.

Father God, I’m asking that you stir up within me and within your set-apart saints, a heart that reverences you, honours you and ever seeks to please you. May we, as members of the Body of Christ, pursue you and the things pertaining to your kingdom, far more than our own selfish desires and personal aspirations.

Lord God, deliver us from the Evil One. Thwart Satan’s blatant or subtle attempts to discourage, distract, or derail us from a godly mindset and lifestyle.

Enable us to adopt David’s strategy and cry out to you in openness and honesty, seeking your help and daily motivation, regarding our commitment and devotion to you.

In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

© Carol Hind

 

FOR REFLECTION & SCRUTINY :

Has today’s post changed your concept of “godliness”?

What action will you take this week to become one whose heart is “perfect towards God”?

 

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 Sunday’s Supplications

Sunday’s Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Why not become a part of the WoW! community by participating in these prayers?

Let’s pray for ourselves and for each other. Let’s obey God’s command to watch and pray for all the saints (Ephesians 6:18)

Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to join this praying community.

 

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Women of Warfare followers and visitors I wish you a blessed and victorious week!

 

*Free postal copies of UCB Word For Today are available from: FREEPOST RLTX-ABUL-GRAR, United Christian Broadcasters, Westport Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4JF (UK and Republic of Ireland only).

For the online version visit: http://www.ucb.co.uk/word-for-today.html

 

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Holy Week – A Time to Ponder

A time to reflect. A time to examine our hearts afresh. A time to make sober assessments of our lives and see whether we are truly aligning our thoughts and lives to the spiritual requirements of our Father God. A time to contemplate the Passion of our Christ. A time to surrender. A time to pray. A time to praise. A time to express heartfelt gratitude. A time to celebrate!

If the above words resonate with you and you’d like to spend a little more time in an atmosphere of prayer, praise and worship, then here is a link to one of my previous posts, which I trust will help you to do just that.

Happy Easter dear friends!

Love,

Carol (aka Ladycee) ♥ ♥ ♥

CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

Captives, Chains & the Power of Christ

But thus says the Lord:

“Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away,

And the prey of the terrible be delivered…” (Isaiah 49:25)

 

In order to fully appreciate the message of this post, please listen to the following video of gospel artist, Tasha Cobbs.

Singing a Song of God’s Deliverance:

Wow! Whether through preaching, praise or prayer, what an honour to be able to have such influence, to be a vessel through whom God’s glorious power can be released!

 God Cares About the Captives:

There is power in the name of Jesus!

And in the mighty, matchless name of Jesus, every chain can be broken!

Do you believe that?

Maybe as we look around us and consider the problems of this world, we find it hard to believe. Perhaps even our own personal experience stands at odds with the above statement.

So if that’s the case, what is one to do?

Beloved, let me encourage you to take a leaf from the book of a humble and honest man in the Bible, who cried out: Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!

Did you listen to the above video? I hope you didn’t skip it because I know it will bless you, and this post is in part my response to it.

Greater is God’s power within us than the Enemy’s attack against us!

I have spent a good 2 hours or so this morning, listening to Tasha Cobbs sing her powerfully anointed song: There is power in the name of Jesus!

Following an overwhelming and persistent attack of the Enemy upon my mind and physical being, I began to watch this video. Listening to this song and responding to the power and anointing of Jesus as Tasha ministered, changed the very atmosphere around and within me. Furthermore, it has stirred a new desire to be used mightily by God, to see people set free from the lies and deception of the Enemy.

A heart of compassion:

Dear readers, I’ve been listening to this song quite a lot this week. And yes, whilst I’ve been touched by the testimonies of God’s power, I’ve been even more deeply moved by the cries of individuals beseeching God to change them… to change their lives… to deliver them from addictions and all manner of brokenness or the destruction of their circumstances.

And these testimonies, these pleas for God’s intervention, have birthed afresh in my heart, wonder and amazement and adoration for a Holy God who could love as He loves, who could be so merciful and generous of heart that he would stoop down to rescue those who call upon him, whether in faith, or in desperation. What a mighty God we serve! What an awesome God we serve!

Privileged to serve:

And what an honour, privilege and responsibility we’ve been given as Christ’s disciples, as members of his Body to bring that message of hope and reconciliation to others. To come alongside our Heavenly Father as his co-labourers and use our gifts for his glory, and to serve those he brings across our pathway. What an honour to be entrusted to pray and intercede for his will to be done on earth as it is in heaven… to command that the chains of Satan’s captives be broken!

Dear friends, I am positive that there are no addictions, afflictions, overwhelming cares, bondages, or besetting problems in heaven. Absolutely none!

So if that is the case, why are we not seeing more of God’s will being accomplished here on earth? Has God’s power diminished? Has the power resident in the name of Jesus somehow decreased?

Ridiculous even to ask, isn’t it? Of course it hasn’t!

So if the problem is not with God’s power, if it’s not with the name of Jesus, then what’s the problem? Who’s the problem?

That’s the question you and I have to ask ourselves honestly. This is the time to examine ourselves—not our colleagues, not our neighbours, not our leaders, not our pastors or politicians!

Why am I not experiencing the phenomenal power of God in my life, in the lives of my loved ones, in my work place, local fellowship, city and nation?

Heeding Christ’s Call to Prayer

Creflo Dollar once said that every failure in our lives is the result of a prayer failure.

Bearing this in mind, may I remind you of what Jesus said whilst he walked on this earth? He said that “…men always ought to pray and not lose heart.” (Luke 18:1)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, let us not forget Creflo Dollar’s words. And let’s begin to be diligent in obeying Jesus’ uncompromising direction. Let us pray always and not lose heart.

Have a blessed and victorious weekend!

Love from,

Carol (aka Lady Cee)

 

Credit: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

A Tale of Mr Little, Nothing & No-one!

 

We all learn lessons in life. Some stick, some don’t. I have always learned more from rejection and failure than from acceptance and success.

Henry Rollins

 

Too many Christians have a commitment of convenience. They’ll stay faithful as long as it’s safe and doesn’t involve risk, rejection, or criticism. Instead of standing alone in the face of challenge or temptation, they check to see which way their friends are going.

Charles Stanley

 

Our self-perception determines our behavior. If we think we’re small, limited, inadequate creatures, then we tend to behave that way, and the energy we radiate reflects those thoughts no matter what we do. If we think we’re magnificent creatures with an infinite abundance of love and power to give, then we tend to behave that way. Once again, the energy around us reflects our state of awareness.

 

Have you ever been made to feel like so high?

Perhaps it was your boss at work, or a colleague.

Whoever it was, they managed to convey their low opinion of you – that you are of little, or no significance – in their estimation that is! And I can bet the Enemy lost no time in confirming those thoughts.

In the Bible, we read of a character named Zacchaeus, who was not only little of physical stature but also little in the eyes of others. As a tax collector, he would have been rejected, scorned, even reviled. And so you can bet your life (don’t do it though!) that even the religious people of his day marginalised him and dismissed him as of little, or no consequence.

How about you?

Have there been people in your life who have shoved you to the margins of dignity or respectability?

And have circumstances or the way you are treated, reinforced within your mind any negative feelings you may have about yourself and your future?

 

STOP!

Don’t listen to the voice and lies of the Enemy. He used the same tactics on Jesus and will do the same to his followers. After all, Jesus himself said:

A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. (Matthew 10:24 NKJ)

 

In terms of how others were ill-treating him, listen to what Paul said of himself and his fellow-workers:

…being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now. (1 Corinthians 4:13 NKJ)

 

 As I wrote this, I suddenly had an epiphany.

You see I’d get upset with God because since He is in control, why is he allowing my ill-treatment and persecution? Why does He allow it to continue? And how does being constantly maligned and misrepresented bring glory to you Lord?

But what I, and what you need to realise, is that we occupy different roles and those roles carry different responsibilities and attract different challenges and trials.

  • As an ambassador I am supposed to reflect the principles of his kingdom and promulgate its benefits.
  • As his child, I am supposed to love and trust him, develop my relationship with him.
  • As his disciple, I am supposed to pick up my cross daily and follow him.
  • As a member of the Body of Christ, I am to live according to rules which differ from those of the secular world and adopt a mind-set that usually thinks contrary to popular opinion.
  • As a servant of God I am required to serve him faithfully to the best of my ability.
Swimming against the tide of popular perceptions

It is precisely because we are swimming against the tide of popular perceptions and what is deemed as normal behaviour that we Christians can become a target.

Like Zacchaeus, we need to get out of the way of the crowd… raise ourselves above the environment of the status quo. However, realise that in doing so, the spotlight of other people’s malice or contempt will almost certainly focus upon you.

Now dear reader, if you have been, or are currently being mistreated, climb out of the box in which others have pigeon-holed you. Don’t passively accept or participate in those scenarios of victimisation or rejection, which other people have orchestrated for you.

In order for him to see Jesus, Zacchaeus’ strategy was to elevate himself above the general crowd, above his circumstances and the perception of others (i.e. his littleness of stature and character).

Dear friend, choosing to stay on the same level as the crowd means you will limit your perception of self… means you can only see this crowd… means you’ll become carried away by it or absorbed into its mentality… means you’ll only see yourself in relation to it.

Now, if you can relate to anything I’ve said in this post, allow me to counsel you today. Learn a lesson from Zacchaeus who chose to climb higher—and go do likewise!

Choose to be a victor!

Wishing you a peaceful and victorious week.

Love from

 

Carol (aka Lady Cee) ♥♥

 

CREDIT: all the above CC0 images come courtesy of Pixabay.com

Have you been blessed by this post? Why not share it with others? And would you be so kind as to let me know your response in a comment box below? I’d love to hear from you.

 

Flex those Spiritual Muscles!

 

Want to succeed this year? Want this year to be better than those gone before? Want to walk as a victorious over-comer? Want to reign in your circumstances, instead of your circumstances ruling you? Then develop your spiritual strength!

Aim to be strong and let that strength, that sense of stability, that emotional and internal resilience be in God’s power and might. Let that strength emanate from your ongoing relationship with him. Let your strength be based upon His Word.

Remember dear one, you are more than a conqueror!

Love from

Carol (aka ladycee)  ♥♥

 

This excerpt is taken from my post: Do you have the ‘S’ factor? To read the rest of it, please click here.

 

 

 

Not Now God!

 

I recently learned about a children’s story titled: Not Now Benard, from a work colleague.

When I heard the plot, I was shocked. Could this really be a popular children’s story? And how on earth could it be considered suitable reading material for young children? Just hearing about it disturbed me. I was intrigued and had to check it out for myself.

After doing so, I became even more convinced that this was more a story (a warning in fact), to adults, particularly parents. I also thought that this bizarre tale held a salutary lesson for us as Christians.

Now, if you are not familiar with this tale, you can watch a 2min version of it here.

As Christians, is it possible that when we habitually make excuses about our prayerlessness, when we say we are too busy to pray, we are by default allowing a spiritual monster to devour our loved ones and devour aspects of our own lives?

When we say: “Not now God!” (either literally or by default), when we choose other priorities, we may be unwittingly opening our lives to the presence of that spiritual monster, Satan.

Just a thought.

 

Prayer Gem 15

 

  

To pray is to change. It’s the central avenue God uses to transform us. If we’re not willing to change we will soon abandon prayer.

(Richard Foster)

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Question:

Have you sent Jesus your knee-mail today?