Gratitude makes the heart happy

Have you ever spent time with a person or family that are going through a difficult time?    I have at certain times, and always try to help in some way with either an encouraging word, a prayer, some cash or even food items.

A few weeks ago a friend and myself went to visit a family going through a very challenging time in their lives.   We did not know them, and  were asked to visit  as they needed some prayer and hope.    It did not take long to figure out what their main problem was.

We were with this family for over five hours with prayer and guidance, and not one time did we hear anything positive come out of their mouths.   When we asked them to give thanks to the Lord for something, anything, nothing could come out.  We received blank looks.

It´s important to find the good in all circumstances and give thanks.

The last part of Luke 6:45 says   For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.

Their hearts were filled with frustration, disappointment, heartache.  I am not minimizing their current situation, but giving thanks  is vitally important.

If the worse comes out of our mouths constantly, the enemy takes advantage of that and then we don´t see the light at the end of the tunnel.

We had to explain to watch their words and begin declaring victory. With their words, they need to begin to turn the tide. With their words they need to give thanks, to praise the Lord, and listen to worship music.

This brings me to the season we are in where we celebrate life.  The life that Jesus gave for us, his death on the cross to take our shame, our sins, our guilt and give us eternity in heaven with Him.

Living in a developing nation has his drawbacks in many areas, but there is always something to be thankful for, and I look for it.  If I look for the bad, I will find it.  If I keep looking, I will find more bad things to complain about.  But I choose to look for the good.

Look for something to be thankful for, even in the small things and begin to praise and thank the Lord.  What we have is salvation, and that alone deserves our praise.

One thing I am thankful for, the view from my home.

The view from my house

 

How to be bold and courageous

Have you ever been in a place where everything around you was in complete disarray, and all you wanted to do was escape to some tropical beach?

I have many times.   During those difficult moments, besides wanting to run away the words would escape me to explain or confront said situation.  All I could do during my prayer times was God, please remove so and so.  God, please get me out of this situation.  God, I need a miracle.

Being shy and insecure during those time did not help much either.

How to be bold and courageous

 

I really did not want to face what was in front me.  Obtaining a tan was my best option.

I  found out this is the wrong approach. God was teaching me life lessons on growth, maturity and even speech.  Be ready in season and out of season came to mind.  We will face situations that we are uncomfortable in, and running away will not help, nor will we mature and learn from it.

I have learned to ask for boldness,  (not hesitating)  courage, (being able to face difficulty) and eloquence of speech when needing to confront or deal with something I am highly uncomfortable with.

In Acts Chapter 4, Peter and John were facing prison and beatings because in the previous chapter they prayed for a lame man since birth, and he was instantly healed.   Everyone knew this man and he was over 40 years of age. This tells me he was a permanent fixture at the entrance of the Gate Beautiful.

Now that he was healed, Peter and John found themselves in a dilemma.

Peter and John prayed for boldness, and the council had no choice but to let them go.

I found out the words I do not say can become a prison to those that need to hear the truth.

As Peter and John prayed for boldness, I now do the same, whether there is a difficult situation or not.  It´s best to be prepared for when it does come upon me, I will find myself to be ready.

Instead of asking God to take everything away, I pray for strength,  courage, wisdom, boldness, stamina, and grace to continue.

After a prayer like this, I find myself energized and I know God is with me.

Can you imagine if:

  • Jesus did not face the cross
  • Moses did not go up Mount Sinai
  • Noah did not build the ark
  • Saul/Paul did not accept the call to follow the Lord

There are many more examples, but you get the picture.

During difficult moments in life, it´s who you become in the process that counts.

Don´t give up, keep asking God to gird you and He will not fail in His promise to keep you and give you wisdom.

 

 

The calm of the ocean

In my prayer time this morning, the Lord showed me an ocean.  As I looked, I thought it was a lake, as the waters were not moving like the ocean does.  But it was not a lake, it indeed was the ocean.

I saw boats scattered throughout the ocean, some of these small boats had one person inside, others two, sometimes three.  They all had a single fishing pole.

Lord, what does this mean, what are you showing me?

I will calm the waters to bring in my lost sheep.  The harvest will be performed on a personal level, one on one, or two on one, in intimate settings.

It is time for my harvest to be reeled in. They will be saved from the depths of the sea, the sea of sin where it is dark, cold and lonely.  They will come out of the depths into the light, and I will expose them to the “Son” and they will receive healing.

It is a season of restoration and harvest of souls.

I have loved ones that I am praying for, and this word encouraged me. May it do the same for you.

 

 

Why obedience is important to you and God.

In sharing the Christmas message at church, our pastor focused on Joseph, the husband of Mary and his obedience to the Lord.

I don’t recall hearing many sermons about Joseph during the Christmas season.  It is usually about Christ and His sacrifice, and mostly about Mary and her response to the Angel –  Behold, the maidservant of the Lord.  Let it be to me according to your word.  Luke 1:38

Obedience

In hearing about Joseph, our pastor pointed out key truths.  He was a son of Abraham,  a just man, wanting to please God, obedient and operated in faith.

Imagine for a moment.  Joseph is engaged to Mary, and the scripture says before they came together or were married, Mary was found to be pregnant. Joseph did not want to disgrace her, and he made plans to break off the engagement silently.

How do you think Joseph felt at hearing this news?  His betrothed was pregnant, and not by him.

As Joseph was thinking about how to end his relationship, it was during this time an Angel came to him in a dream and informed him Mary was pregnant of the Holy Spirit.

Would you believe a story like that?  Joseph did, and his obedience to the Lord is recorded.  Not only here, but also when he was warned of yet in another dream to escape Egypt to save Jesus´  life.

I have been meditating on this sermon all week, and I ask myself, where have I been disobedient to the Lord in my daily life?  It´s so easy to read this story many times over, but never stop to think about Joseph´s obedience in all of this, and how vital it was.

This type of obedience took courage and faith.

If we read of all the accounts in the Bible where the Lord calls someone to operate in obedience, many times it goes against logic.

  • Moses parting the red sea
  • Moses striking a rock and have water gushing out of it
  • Noah building an Ark
  • Gideon choosing only 300 men  to defeat the Midianites
  • Sauls conversion on the road to Damascus

Of course, there are many more examples of obedience in the Bible.  If we strive to be obedient in the smallest of things in life, imagine how the Lord will trust us with the bigger things that come our way.

The bigger things may result in blessings, greater gifting and anointing upon our lives and satisfaction that you are in God´s will.

Operating in obedience to the Lord demonstrates our love for Him.

John 14:15  “If you love Me, keep My commandments.

My prayer for 2018, When I hear the voice of the Lord leading me in a direction that may seem unlogical, may I be obedient.

How to see in the spirit exercise

In my last post regarding Seeing in the Spirit,  I shared my journey into something new and the beginning steps to achieve this goal.

Today I would like to share with you an exercise these books suggest you do to increase your capacity to “see” in the spiritual realm.  If you have not yet purchased these books, I encourage you to do so.

see in the spirit

 

One of these exercises to seeing in the spirit is the following: I am to sit or lie down in a darkened room that has some light present, but not much. This exercise works well for me in the mornings, as the sunlight is starting to shine through the blinds in our bedroom.  Where I live sunrise is 5:30 a.m, every morning, every day, all year round.

In this exercise, I am to “look” at the empty space between me and the ceiling, or a far wall for ten minutes, and try to detect any images that appear and make note of them. I am not to dismiss “my eyes playing tricks on me” but pay attention to what I am seeing.  When I do this, I look intently, asking God to open my spiritual eyes so that I can “see.”

As I began doing this exercise, I saw a swirling white object move in the room and it seemed to go from side to side. I also saw something quite strange, and the only way I can explain it, its shape was a volume bar, white in color and it was going from side to side as well.

The next part of this exercise is to ask the Lord what I saw and make a note of it in my journal.

In journaling,  the Lord said the following:  ” What I saw was an Angel called Lapidus, and Lapidus brings joy and peace. The music bar-shaped was another Angel, and this Angel was giving God glory, praise and honor, and exalting his name.  He was dancing, praising God.”

I looked up the meaning of Lapidus, and it means made of stone, pleasant or charming.

We have had our praise music on more than normal since I began doing these exercises, and it has made a difference in our household atmosphere. I sense more peace and joy.

I am encouraged as I began “seeing in the spirit.”  I still have much to learn and grow.  I am seeing dimly for now, but I have faith as I continue these training exercises it will become clearer as I press forward.

I continue to repeat these exercises.  Sometimes I see something new, other times I see the same Angel swirling around.  It is quite fun, to say the least!

I will be sharing another exercise and its results in my next post.