Category Archives: God

The Wrong Mountain

file-2I don’t think we could ever overdo the conversation of obedience. Obedience is love. It’s such a big deal that God compares disobedience to witchcraft (1 Samuel 15:23). So, since we’re talking about obedience, let’s talk about Abraham.

Most people know the story of Abraham and Isaac. And the test he went through to prove his love and obedience to God. This test ended with Abraham not having to sacrifice his own son, as was the original command from God.

What I believe, is that Abraham’s obedience saved Isaac’s life. Let’s think about it.

Abraham didn’t know which mountain he was supposed to go to. “Take your son, your only son—yes, Isaac, whom you love so much—and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you” (Genesis 22:2). God told him to take his son, go to Moriah and then he would show him the mountain. And of course, as the story goes, once Abraham was there a ram was stuck in the bushes which in turn became Abraham’s sacrifice instead of Isaac. But, what if?

What if Abraham wasn’t obedient? What if Abraham didn’t go to Moriah? Even simpler, what if he didn’t go to the mountain God showed him? He would have only partially obeyed God’s command and partial obedience is still disobedience.

You see, I understand the foreshadowing details of this story. I understand the parallels. I understand the test. But what I’ve recently learned is that it was complete obedience to God that kept Isaac alive. Not the ram, not perfect timing, and certainly not coincidence. Obedience.

In essence, what I believe is that God will always provide a ram in the bush, it’s just that we keep on going to the wrong mountain.

 

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Put a Little Love in Your Heart

Proverbs 17:9 (NLT) Love prospers when a fault is forgiven,

    but dwelling on it separates close friends.

I don’t like arguing with my husband or anyone. I don’t like disagreeing with people. I don’t like being hurt and having to forgive. Who wants any of that, right?

Today, I read Proverbs 17:9 and I thought about my roll in a person’s forgiveness story. Now, I’m not saying people should hurt you just so you forgive them over and over and over. I am saying that every time you forgive a fault against you, you do your part in preserving love.

Every time I forgive my husband or vice versa, our marriage grows a little more love. When forgiveness takes place, love prospers. It’s dwelling on mistakes that strains the relationships.

Is it easy to forgive? Not always. It is right to forgive? Always. If we’re placed on this earth to love and forgiveness makes love prosper when we do, forgiveness is that much more important.

I believe, we’re most like Christ when we serve and when we forgive. Christ didn’t have to do either, but He chose to. He chose to set the example. Surely I can do both because I need to. Really, I believe God is saying, just put a little love in your heart.

If Jesus can forgive crucifixion. Surely, we can survive and find a resolution – India. Arie

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxMLZjqZ8wE

 

 

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28

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I’ve found it easier to accept your age if you start saying it even before you’re there. I found myself saying I was 28, five months ago. So, now that I am, I am already used to the idea. However, getting older has never been hard for me. I’m like wine, the older the better. Ha ha.

Anyway, I am embracing the year of 28. The year of 28 as a married woman. The year of 28 as a career woman. The year of 28 as a writer. Most importantly, the year of 28 as a Christian.

It is time to step up in my walk with God, and it’s especially necessary. At 28, I shouldn’t have the same relationship with God that I had at 18. My prayer life should be deeper. My Bible studying should be more engaged. In other words, God should have more of me with every year, with every day.

So this year, my desire is to focus more on God and less on me. My career, marriage, writing, whatever it is, will automatically be better with my focus on God’s will in those areas. I’ll be better with my focus on God.

I declare 28 to be great as I focus on God’s fate for my life. Here we go.

 

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Won and Done

Attachmen

There is a constant message of hope throughout the Bible. Typically, if you’re looking for a message of encouragement, the book of Joshua is where you go. There is a constant emphasis, in fact, a command given to Joshua by God to be strong and courageous.

Joshua had some big shoes to fill. Moses was gone and now he was the leader of millions of people, chosen to lead them into the promised land. And if you read about these people, they don’t seem to have been the most cooperative group of people. So, yes, he probably needed some encouragement, and who better than God Almighty to encourage him?

For now, let’s focus on the promised land. It was a land God had picked for His people. God doesn’t break His promises AND He only desires what’s best for His children. So the Israelites were about to receive the promised land. The best place for them, chosen by God. A promise they had been holding on to for years and years was about to be fulfilled.

It was theirs. And of course, there are some more major details in this story, please read it! There are more commands to Joshua to be strong and courageous as well. But for now, I think the most recent take away I have from this wonderful story is the concept of “Won and Done.” And it’s not just the battles in this story, but battles of God’s people throughout history in the old testament.

I think it was this idea that He wanted His people to understand about His promises, and still wants us to understand. It’s the fact that His promise is a promise. Whether it will take a battle for it to come true or not, if God promised it, consider it won and done. Frankly, because it is.

Joshua 6:2, 20

But the Lord said to Joshua, “I have given you Jericho, its king, and all its strong warriors.

When the people heard the sound of the rams’ horns, they shouted as loud as they could. Suddenly, the walls of Jericho collapsed, and the Israelites charged straight into the town and captured it.

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You Make Me Wanna Shout

ImageJoshua 6:5, 20

When you hear the priests give one long blast on the rams’ horns, have all the people shout as loud as they can. Then the walls of the town will collapse, and the people can charge straight into the town.”

When the people heard the sound of the rams’ horns, they shouted as loud as they could. Suddenly, the walls of Jericho collapsed, and the Israelites charged straight into the town and captured it.

Shout – a loud cry expressing a strong emotion or calling attention.

Have you brought any attention to God lately? Let’s first acknowledge that it’s completely miraculous for a city’s walls to collapse from the shouts of the Israelites, certainly that should be pointed out.

But, let’s focus on the shout a bit more. It was more than noise. It was more than a battle cry. It was more than a disturbance or distraction of some sort. It was an acknowledgement. It was about God. It was about acknowledging what God was doing.

The Bible says they shouted as loud as they could. Friend, when God is doing something, you want to give all that you can. It may not necessarily be shouting, but it may be writing. It may be singing. It may be serving. It may be giving. The point is that when you want to make a big deal about God, whatever you can do the most of to the glory and honor of His name is what you want to do.

When you really focus on bringing attention to God, He’ll make you wanna shout. Ask the Israelites.

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Third Time’s the Charm

Why do we get upset with God for questioning us when He knows us better than we know ourselves? When He knows our past, present, and future, how do we find room to get testy with Him?

John 21:17

A third time he asked him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”

Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.”

I find it interesting that Peter was hurt that Jesus asked him the question three times. Coming from a guy that denied Jesus three times, you would think he would understand the need for the repetitive questioning. But, we do this too. We get impatient with God and quickly forget the eternal patience He has had with us. We get bothered when we have to receive the same lesson, but neglect to mention that we’ve refused to learn from it. Yet, when God asks us do we love Him, we have the nerve to get offended. As if the offenses we’ve committed against Him wouldn’t be reason to ask.

God sees our hearts. So it’s not like He doesn’t know if we truly love Him. I just think that God likes to reveal our hearts to us. So sometimes He has to ask. Sometimes you have to retest. Sometimes you have to repeat. As my friend says, you have to revisit and revise. And it’s what you find on the retest that reveals what you are. It’s in those moments that you get the answers to the questions God asked you.

Every now and then, the third time really is the charm. You just don’t know it yet.

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Stay Woke

Mark 14:37

Then he returned and found the disciples asleep. He said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour?

I wonder how many times Jesus had his heart broken. I’m not talking about romantic love heart breaks. I’m talking about true devastation, utter discouragement, and disappointment.

I imagine the moment the disciples were sleep could have been one. He’s preparing for death, a violent one at that, and they’re sleeping…

Hours before they were so pumped up! Ready to die for Jesus! But now, they can’t even stay awake.

Sadly, that’s the point. We’re quick to say we’re ready to do what God hasn’t even asked of us. But we won’t do what He has asked. We’re ready to die. We’re ready to fight! Yet we won’t even stay awake to pray.

Truthfully, God doesn’t need me to vow to die for Him if I haven’t even committed to living for Him. What are you busy doing and promising to do, when all God asks of you is to stay awake? He doesn’t need any empty promises. He needs people to stay awake!

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