DEATH THREATS

//SCRIPTURE//

JOHN 12:9-12
When the large crowd of the Jews learned that Jesus was there, they came, not only on account of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 So the chief priests made plans to put Lazarus to death as well, 11 because on account of him many of the Jews were going away and believing in Jesus.

//OBSERVATION//

When your life experiences transformation by the grace of God, people will notice and begin watching you. Death to Life is powerful and so inviting to all! WHY? Because its common in all of humanity. We all have things in our life that are dead and going nowhere. We desire for change to take place and many of us have tried but human effort and discipline is very limited. True lasting change comes from one source and that is the HAND of GOD. This is what Lazarus experienced and this is what many of you reading have experienced as well.

Some may Wonder why the trouble after this transformation? Why the constant struggle to maintain and build on this initial transformational  experience? I wonder if Lazarus ever desired to remain dead rather than come back to the living. After all, death brought a sense of freedom that we know not of unless you have been there for three days. No more competition, judgements, schedule stresses, financial stresses, etc… Coming back to life and returning to live in this mortal body has its challenges and God only knows why supernatural transformations come like this to us. Why do they come? One purpose: so that others may believe in the power of God and not human effort.

Is’nt this the gospel anyways? WHat God has done for man and not what man has done for God. The very best man has to offer God in his flesh is like filthy rags. The things that last are the things that originate from His Spirit.

Bottom Line: Your life counts! Your transformation counts! Your resurrection counts for one purpose: TO glorify Him in your Brady and in your spirit which are His. Therefore, do not consider it a surprise that opposition comes like the waves a of the sea. The enemy desires to place you back in the grave cause your story matters and is the very thing God will use to bring many to a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father.

Embrace the Race set before you and Remain close…a breath away from your Father so that you may hear His whisper when He speaks.

//APPLICATION//

Marcus, fret not of constant opposition. Even though the curse comes without a cause. It does not mean that your actions are the cause. The cause can be that the enemy wants to destroy and ruin your story that’s wrapped up in the person of Christ. Christ in you is the hope of glory therefore rise up and embrace the race today.

//PRAYER//

Father, forgiveness only comes from you and freedom as well. May theses two this day resonate in my mind all the day. Help me to look for the opportunities  that come so that Your life may be seen and noticed. I trust Your hand, Your heart, Your ways.   Amen

DAILY DEVOTION – WHY?

People ask me what I use for my personal devotional time. My default is one of two tools that really allow my heart to find true rest in scripture. These devotional tools have been proven over time and it allows the WORD OF GOD TO READ YOU RATHER THAN YOU JUST READING THE WORD OF GOD. One is the SOLO Devotional written by Eugene Peterson and the other and current one I find myself in is the S.O.A.P. Method which is simply reading through the Living Journal Bible and applying SOAP.
S – Scripture
O – Observation
A – Application
P – Prayer

No Rush. Take your time and again allow the Spirit to breath His life into your spirit. When God breathed into man, He became alive and this same patterns continues to this day.

// S – Gen 2:25 – ”25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.”
Luke 1:20
20 But behold, you will be mute and not able to speak until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words which will be fulfilled in their own time.”
Luke 1:37-38
37 For with God nothing will be impossible.”
38 Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

// O – The beauty of a new birth. Whether it was a new creation in Adam and Eve or Johns and Jesus birth preordained by God. We are in the very hands of an Almighty, All-Knowing God who lives and rules forever. His plans shall come to pass according to His timing and purpose. Who are we to question Him. Let us keep our conscious clear and our hearts free from question when it comes to Gods plan for us. He knows best and His fulfillment of it is beyond our understanding. Yes, He is good and He of for us but I can almost guarantee you that the plan goes beyond us and impacts others according to His for-knowledge. Don’t resist but embrace the challenging moments you find yourself in as you pursue the will of God. The process, the pain, the promise will all become one when its over and done. And what happens next is nothing but beauty. It begins again but this time deeper and even more consequential because He now has trained a warrior for greater service. Be not weary in well doing.

// A – As I look at this new beginning initiated by God Himself, why resist His purpose and plan. Allow your conscience to be free of question and doubt. Rather embrace the race He has called you to. 

//P – Father, you alone what stands before us and all that is ahead is able to submit to your perfect will in the whole picture. I submit myself to your will…Your Kingdom, Your Purpose; your timing be done. Amen.

#Thinkbeyondtoday.

VISION PROCEEDS PREPERATION

Read a quote today: “Don’t be impatient. Don’t move before God leads. Accept his training and his timing. Meanwhile, your vision, though it may burn inside you, will enable you to endure the wait, because you know it’s worth it to get it right.”

It’s one thing to get a vision for your future but another to understand that the timing of it is just as vital. For instance, an Olympic athlete has a vision of a gold medal long before he stands on the podium. When the vision begins years before is when the training begins. The preparation of the man is to be embraced joyfully as he awaits the timing of its manifestation.

One reason I believe He gives us the vision early on is that He knows what’s ahead. The opportunities to become discouraged, the various details that seem to weigh you down, even the individuals He has given you to partner with can be challenging. BUT regardless of the heartaches, its part of the process to accomplish His purpose and when the Vision is clear in your spirit…NO ONE can take it away. At times, you want to surrender it but you wake up the next morning knowing it would be foolish to let go of something that should be but is not quite ready yet. Therefore the vision keeps you steadfast, locked in to the future picture of what one day will come to pass and oh what a victorious site in your heart it is and shall become soon.

Philippians 2:13-17
13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. 14 Do all things without complaining and disputing, 15 that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.17 Yes, and if I am being poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all.

The VISION always proceeds PREPARATION. Just cause you SEE IT doesn’t mean your ready, therefore BE PATIENT and prepare for training. 

QUESTION: how God is preparing you now to fulfill your vision effectively later on.

THE POTTER LIVES

I was reading Oswald Chambers this am and just know its a word in season for myself and others. It’s one thing to receive a vision for a preferred future but a totally different thing to see the plan our Master has for our lives personally when we endeavor to pursue it. We know its bigger and ultimately His dream for His Kingdom but in most cases He needs a point man. In order for the vision to come to fruition, the man must ready. He continues to build His Church one disciple at a time. He Alone Equips and trains him to be ready! Read below:

The parched ground shall become a pool… —Isaiah 35:7

We always have a vision of something before it actually becomes real to us. When we realize that the vision is real, but is not yet real in us, Satan comes to us with his temptations, and we are inclined to say that there is no point in even trying to continue. Instead of the vision becoming real to us, we have entered into a valley of humiliation.

Life is not as idle ore,

But iron dug from central gloom,

And battered by the shocks of doom

To shape and use.

God gives us a vision, and then He takes us down to the valley to batter us into the shape of that vision. It is in the valley that so many of us give up and faint. Every God-given vision will become real if we will only have patience. Just think of the enormous amount of free time God has! He is never in a hurry. Yet we are always in such a frantic hurry. While still in the light of the glory of the vision, we go right out to do things, but the vision is not yet real in us. God has to take us into the valley and put us through fires and floods to batter us into shape, until we get to the point where He can trust us with the reality of the vision. Ever since God gave us the vision, He has been at work. He is getting us into the shape of the goal He has for us, and yet over and over again we try to escape from the Sculptor’s hand in an effort to batter ourselves into the shape of our own goal.

The vision that God gives is not some unattainable castle in the sky, but a vision of what God wants you to be down here. Allow the Potter to put you on His wheel and whirl you around as He desires. Then as surely as God is God, and you are you, you will turn out as an exact likeness of the vision. But don’t lose heart in the process. If you have ever had a vision from God, you may try as you will to be satisfied on a lower level, but God will never allow it.

DEFEAT DEFLATE DETERMINED

Waking up from a nap and my emotions run wild and turn south. Interesting how this happens since I woke up this morning and my emotions were of gratitude, joy, strength and love. So what of this rollercoaster ride I often find myself in? Simple: its all emotion and from what  I have learned, emotions are subject to change like the waves of the sea.

The solution: Encourage yourself in the Lord, in the faith, in who you really are. If you allow your emotions to dictate you or the emotions of others for that matter, then you have just given yourself a one way ticket to defeat.

I was driving my tractor the other day and noticed that even though i did not change any setting, the mower was cutting lower and lower and more on one side than the other. I had to actiually stop and figure out what was going on, thinking maybe a pin or something major took place to my mower deck. TO find out a few minutes later, it was a simple leak in my tire from a mesquite thorn. It pricked a brand new tire and so began a SLOW air leak. DEFLATION got the best of me that day. The same is true with many of us…DEFLATION does not come suddenly but rather slowly. We leak away and embrace subtle thoughts of fear, lies that prick at our emotional adequacy and eventually we feel drained and come to a hault spiritually. The subtle lies of “your a failure, you’re not enough, you’re not wanted” will drive you further and further away from your original and eternal destiny.

I must turn to scripture and allow His Words to penetrate the thoughts of another attempt for daily defeat. Be DETERMINED to rise above the fray of negativity and Embrace the words of strength He has for His children, The mind is like a WILD HORSE, but the mind must be tamed, disciplined, and renewed.

“Isaiah 12:2 “surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord himself, is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation.”

Habakkuk 3:19 “The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer. He enables me to tread upon heights.”

His Strength Is In The Clouds

Psalms 68:32-35
32 Sing to God, you kingdoms of the earth;
Oh, sing praises to the Lord,
Selah
33 To Him who rides on the heaven of heavens, which were of old!
Indeed, He sends out His voice, a mighty voice.
34 Ascribe strength to God;
His excellence is over Israel,
And His strength is in the clouds.
35 O God, You are more awesome than Your holy places.
The God of Israel is He who gives strength and power to His people.
Blessed be God!

Regardless of where I am, every morning and evening I sit, look, imagine, and contemplate on Gods beauty. “Daily” He loads us with benefits as the psalmist says. In the middle of the night last night, as we laid to rest near the waters, I heard the thunder and lighting strike upon the waters and the strongest force being displayed right before me. I have never heard thunder as such. The vibrations rushing though my own frail body. I awoke to a calm and a peace in the sunrise. The sea of glass before me and the soothing sounds of the shore as it gently whispers against the sands at bay. But when i looked up at the clouds…although calm and peaceful, I was reminded of the One who rides on the heavens of heavens. He has a mighty voice and He sends His Word out this morning to all who have ears to hear. His strength is in the clouds and I cannot deny His existence. The first Bible is His creation. He spoke and it was and is and continues…The Rock underneath the shore is a reminder of God Almighty, forever grounded and immovable. The sand is humanity who is held firmly in His hands. The waves of the sea that brush up against the sand of the sea are life’s situations. You thoughts, emotions, life. They all come and go my friend. Pay not much attention to it all. What really secures an individual is that He has you. He is the Rock on which you stand. All else will come and go, but He remains grounded and sure. Who has your attention? Who has your being?

Wherever you may rise. Whatever country, nations, city, or street. Always remember there is One who sits on the throne of heaven. His excitement this day is for you and Him to spend time together. Let Him whisper His song in you. You are not alone my friends. He is all around if only you have eyes to see and ears to hear.

May the peace that passes understanding guard your heart and mind today. In Jesus.