Faith, Fun, Fashion, & Family

Faith, Fun, Fashion, & Family

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thankful He"ART"

Often I struggle with negative thoughts within myself that I must wrestle with on a daily basis. Being Thankful in every circumstance is an exercise of faith. Sometimes our "muscles" in faith get weak and tired, inviting negativism and pity to take over. Once we believe these lies and negative words inside our minds, they are sprung from out mouth. Once released, Satan (John 8:44) grabs a hold of them and gets creative, taking us down creative roads of doubt and dread with no hope in sight.
Today is a day that we should be exercising our faith the most. I pray that it be a spiritual fitness boost to prepare each one of you for the hope that is coming. The birth of The Savior from our own Selfish Negativism has come to clean our sinful slates. When Satan has made a foot on our thoughts or actions, it strangles our hope and joy like weeds. Ask Jesus to weed your thoughts and clean out your garden in your heart, so that hope can grown tall reaching for the Truth and the Light. May your garden produce much fruit for others to eat and taste to see how sweet the Truth is (Psalm 34:8).

God shared a Word of Truth to me in one of my states of pitiful faithlessness. He showed me Ephesians 4:13. I read the entire chapter and let it take root in my heart until I really digested the meaning of it in my life at this point I am in.
God was showing me that it's not about ME. He has greater plans for the Kingdom. If I want to be a part of it, then I need to get over myself and focus on greater things. He will pull us through whatever we are going through if we just keep being obedient to His will (being thankful, sharing the Truth, and loving others). I needed to get out of my bottle, break the glass surrounding my comfort, reach out, be a light to others, stop being so immature and use what He has done for me in the past to grow out of the glass. When we take on Christ and all that He stands for, it is no longer about US. It is not longer about trying to make this life on Earth "fair". It's not about "what we deserve"! We deserve NOTHING! We are sinful. Christ was not... but He lived the most Unfair life in history. He hung like  a prisoner and plead guilty for what we did, do and will do. Without Him, we are nothing.

Unity and Maturity in the Body of Christ
Ephesians 4
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says:
“When he ascended on high,
    he took many captives
    and gave gifts to his people.”...
 11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Ship in a bottle-
A person in their own bottle of faith, deciding what to take from the Word and what to leave.
An immature Christian. In their own world, not contributing to the Kingdom of Christ, but more subtracting in their lack of faith, not sharing the faith, not stepping out of their comfort for Him.
James 1:6
"But let him ask in faith, never wavering; for he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind."
Ephesian 4:14
" Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. "

Christ is the source of light from which out light comes from. Nothing can be hidden from His light.
Christ's Light, His word, guidance, searching shepherd
Psalm 119:105
"Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path."

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden."
Hebrew 4:13
"Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account."
Kingdom of God, the believers here on earth working together to build the kingdom.
A city lit on a hill for the lost to see. This kingdom includes those working on earth and those working as witnesses in the clouds in the unseen spiritual realm around us.
Biblical Backing

Luke 17:20-21 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation:
21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

John 14:2
My Father's house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?
Hebrews 12

12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Christ's Comfortable Cottage

 I dream of a little cottage in the woods, hidden behind the safety of tall trees. Safely surrounded by the Creator's work. I cannot wait for the day that this hope becomes reality. I cannot wait for the day I can sit on the shady porch, listen to the birds, sip my coffee and create for my Creator. This day may or may not come, but hope is still present. It is not the physical things of this world that should comfort us... a home is not our comfort just as a pastor is not the "church". It is "He alone that is my refuge, my place of safety, my God in whom I trust." We cannot count on this world to fulfill our hopes and dreams. But my heart is ok with knowing this. I know that when I reach my final destination, comfort with surround me continually in the beauty of His Light.

Psalm 91

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a]
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.”
Surely he will save you
    from the fowler’s snare
    and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his feathers,
    and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
You will not fear the terror of night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
    nor the plague that destroys at midday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
    ten thousand at your right hand,
    but it will not come near you.
You will only observe with your eyes
    and see the punishment of the wicked.
If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,”
    and you make the Most High your dwelling,
10 no harm will overtake you,
    no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
    you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
14 “Because he[b] loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him;
    I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
15 He will call on me, and I will answer him;
    I will be with him in trouble,
    I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him
    and show him my salvation.

Rest In Him
Breathe deep, give thanks, give him your burdens, trust him, ask for peace, be still, rest in the comfort of His presence. 

Psalms 23:1
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 3He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. 4Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

2 Corinthians 1:3-5
God of All Comfort
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.[a]