November 29, 2004 – A LIFETIME GUARANTEE!

I have been thinking all morning of the awesome God we serve and how privileged we are to be His children and share His inheritance through His Son. COLOSSIANS 1:27  To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.  There isn’t a parent alive that could deliver the promises that our Heavenly Father has given to us.  Our own fathers could pay to have our wounds bound up, but our God can make every trial and evil situation work together for our good. He is our “Great Physician” and He can and will raise us up from the dead. Satan’s work is in vain because Our God will turn every evil Satan perpetrates against us into blessings for our good – if we fulfill the provisions given in God’s Word and lay claim to His promises.  ROMANS 8:28  And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.  Our part of the insurance policy is that we “love HIM with all our heart, soul, mind and spirit and love our neighbor as ourselves.”  The other part is that we must be willing to accept His call to live according to His purpose for us.  This is a lifetime guarantee!

PSALM 139:2  You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.  3  You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.  4  Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.  Isn’t it wonderful that God, who created the universe, is interested in our lives and pours such love and care upon us?  He has a plan drawn-up for each of us.   2TIMOTHY 1:9  who has saved us and called us to a holy life – not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time.  He is just waiting for us to join His family, by being born of His spirit through Jesus Christ, to implement his plan. His plan is far greater than any we could orchestrate. God’s plan for our lives has an eternal impact on our generation and perhaps the world if we are faithful to Him.  We can choose to be a “light in the darkness” through the Spirit of Christ who illuminates our pathway. Dispelling darkness is far more rewarding than the building of our own kingdom and ego.    JOHN 15:13   Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. We have participated in the greatest love ever given or that can be extended when we accept Jesus as our Savior.  ACT 17:28  ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ 

God has given us the living word and He dwells within us.  He is a King and yet He chooses to dwell within our lowly temples to bring us wisdom and understanding of the mysteries of His great love toward us. Whether our lives are simple or complicated, the questions difficult or easily figured out, the word of God has all the “answers” we need to live our lives to honor and please God. We should always seek God for answers because He knows all things and can do all things.  God’s word itself is God.  Think how powerful that is!!!  ~The Deity of Jesus Christ  JOHN 1:1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  2  He was with God in the beginning.  We can go directly to God and receive what we need.  He is willing and ready to give us His wisdom to replace our foolishness and unwise thinking.  Our resources in God are limitless and yet we fail sometimes to avail ourselves of His knowledge.  JAMES 1:5  If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. If we applied the wisdom of God and the power of His spirit in every area of our lives, think what changes would occur in us, our families and our testimony before all men.  2PETER 1:3  His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Many of us seek a friend for advice or go to the library or the internet for information, but the greatest source of answers for the mysteries of life are in our grasp. If we fail in wisdom or fail to receive help from Him, it is probably because we have not asked Him.

I learned a valuable lesson this week.  May I share it with you?  I caught a virus that attacked my sinuses and larynx and for nearly a week it was almost impossible for me to talk. Everyone was blessed but me!  Weakness and sickness took over……and I let it rule and reign. Others were constantly praying for me and yet I did not lay hold of those prayers by faith.  Finally, I became tired of lying around. I saw my work piling up and became angry and disgusted with myself.  I was in the acceptance of “evil situation mode” and God had to work on my mindset before he could raise me up.  After five days or so, I awakened from my stupor and began to pray. I asked God to give me back my strength and heal me.  In fact, I was determined to look fully to God from now on and be alert to the conditions in my life that needed to be taken directly to The Lord.  Satan had a foothold and I let him have it.  The shame was all mine!  The next morning my strength returned and I learned that accepting my condition without taking it to God was a luxury only satan would enjoy. I hampered my own recovery and blocked those that were praying for me in faith because, for a time, I was content to wallow in sickness! This experience led me to some other truths that need our attention.

During my self-indulgence, I was looking at the news one night and had a vision.  The vision was of a man walking down a dirt road.  I watched as the man continued to walk, then suddenly turned around, and walked back the way he had come. I said to myself, “what was that all about?”  A voice inside me said, “He made a U-turn.” A couple of days passed while I tried the spirits to see if the vision was of God. I also asked God to give me the spiritual application of the vision. 

On the third day, I welcomed a guest into my home.  As the person talked to me, I knew he was the man I had seen in my vision making the “U-turn.” I shared with him my vision and its lesson: he went from walking in fellowship with the Lord to making a “U-turn” and walking in fellowship with satan. God then revealed that the lesson could apply to all of us because we often let satan occupy our minds. As children of the living God, satan will try to use our minds to further his goals and break our fellowship with God.  Among other things, Satan brings thoughts of frustration, self-pity, condemnation of others, or hate to remove us from thoughts of love and mercy.  We waste precious time on such thoughts; time, that could be producing abundant fruit. Satan had successfully taken my visitor’s mind and turned it into a storehouse of unforgiveness, condemnation, and judgment of others.  All worthwhile pursuits were gone. It reminded me of my own short sightedness….I had not realized or taken seriously satan’s attack on me.  My visitor began to accuse several different people of wounding him deeply and that he deserved apologies. On and on the “spiritually blind man” went with his self-pity, which kept him from recognizing his own spirit of unforgiveness, condemnation, judging, and lack of love.  Finally, I heard a voice in my mind saying loudly, “CANCEL THE DEBT!!” FORGIVE THOSE WHO HAVE WRONGED YOU AND BY CANCELING THE DEBT, WHICH YOU BELIEVE YOU ARE OWED, YOU WILL RELEASE YOURSELF FROM SATAN’S GRIP. I was shocked but I recognized God’s truth being given: we sin against others and ourselves when we allow Satan to fill our minds and imaginations with unforgiveness and other unrighteous thoughts.  I relayed what I heard to the person and he was startled. He asked me to repeat the statement.  I knew God had given us a wonderful truth.  THE POWER IS IN OUR HANDS!!!!  If we forgive others, then we cancel satan’s power over us.

The “accuser” or satan also pays us a visit in our minds and imaginations by “accusing us.”  But he cannot accuse us if we “HANG UP ON HIM!”  It is always good to “hang up” on satan.  He has nothing to say that will be good for us.  He is a liar, thief, destroyer, deceiver, robber, etc., Therefore, I refuse to capitalize the first letter of his name.  My computer is screaming at me to capitalize the “s” in his name.  Satan comes as an angel of light and tells us we have a right to sin because we have been sinned against.  Not so! Do not indulge in satan’s sympathetic rhetoric because he wants us to “turn back” from following, loving, and serving the risen Christ.  ~God Is Love  1JOHN 4:7  Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.  8  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.

ROMANS 8:18  I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.  I can truly say that every tear and trial is worthwhile because God works everything together for my spiritual good.  In suffering, we cease from sin. JAMES 1:12  Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.  The only way to truly learn the lessons and truths God has for us is to face every trial knowing GOD WORKS EVERYTHING TOGETHER FOR OUR GOOD.  Oh the lessons we have missed that could have been medicine for our souls if we had not turned aside and refused to drink in the name of our dear Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!  Faith produces God’s Works. Do you want miracles? Then stand in faith, claim God’s promise as your own and believe God is true to His word. 

Just remember: what we ask must always be tempered with the “will of God” and that God acts only in His perfect timing.

With God’s love and blessings,