The joy of the Lord is my strength! Sorrow abounds all around us as we or our loved ones deal with stress, disappointments, illness, and loss, yet still we can find joy in the presence of the Lord! When darkness tries to overtake me I look to the hills from whence comes my help. My help comes from the Lord! Your help comes from the Lord too! I might have to cry sometimes, but I hold fast to God’s promise that one day He will wipe away every tear! I may not always understand “why”, but I’m thankful for the peace of God that surpasses all understanding. The one who can keep me and you through it all, the great I am, is always with us even when we might feel alone and forsaken. God said He will never leave us nor forsake us, and we must believe this as we walk in faith through the storms of life. I may feel sadness try to overtake me unawares, but in the presence of my Lord it must flee! The joy of the Lord is my strength! I will trust and abide in Him!!
The fact that in all that time only the symptoms have been treated NOT the source of the problem. Sounds crazy right, but that’s what often happens even in our spiritual walk with Christ.
Sharing one of my Facebook post from September 26, 2015…
Medical debt has been one of the issues we have dealt with throughout our marriage. I was talking with our assistant pastor and wife about this on yesterday during a class at church, and started thinking about all the doctors I’ve seen over the years, referrals to specialist, test after test, labs and more labs, etc. , and the fact that in all that time only the symptoms have been treated NOT the source of the problem. Sounds crazy right, but that’s what often happens even in our spiritual walk with Christ. We treat the symptoms such as addictions, immodest dress, certain behaviors or attitudes, but fail to address the true source of the problem. A person’s spiritual problems results in sin and ultimately death if not forsaken, but do you know it’s cause? It is a HEART condition. Matthew 15:19 For out of the heart proceed evil… Stop treating the symptoms, and focus on the source. David cried out, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”, and we should do likewise. Problems with the heart can be life threatning, but the bible gives one way to treat it. Psalm 119:11 Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee. Study the word, hide it in your heart, and obey it so that you might live life more abundantly. Allow Dr. Jesus to come in and do surgery on you, and he will remove your stony heart and give you a heart of flesh. The best part of all is that it is free, NO CHARGE, because he already paid the price at the cross!! The Lord gave me the words to a song I titled “Hem of His Garment” years ago, and I encourage you on today to reach out to God like the woman with the issue of blood and be made whole. He’s a doctor that will never give the wrong prognosis for your problem!
5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?
6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
8 Philip saith unto him, Lord, show us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father?
10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.
11 Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.
Sharing an old Facebook post…
Whenever there is a renovation going on the building looks a wreck. Things are ripped out and torn down. Signs are posted saying “Please excuse the mess” to placate those easily frustrated or uncomfortable with the changes. Some people speculate what the new building will look like while others might wonder if it will be more functional/useful to the community. The process is usually long, drawn out, tiresome, and demanding on those involved, yet the finished product (if completed by capable hands) far exceeds most expectations. The torn up mess is quickly forgotten as the vision is finally realized. As a believer, you might sometimes go through this same process, and while onlookers might look, gossip, and criticize you for your apparent state of disarray do not worry, doubt, or fear. Just go through the process resting in the capable and caring hands of our Lord and Savior, Jesus. He will beautify the meek. He will do a great work in you and through you if you allow Him to do so. Trust Him. Don’t begrudge the process!!
Listen to this episode of my podcast, Stepping Stones 123, Adopted!
And the people said, “speak unto us smooth things”. Have you noticed the change of times. I remember growing up the old people would tell you to drink the nastiest of concoctions for medicine to heal the body, and in reluctant obedience we would comply. Today everyone wants flavored water, flavored drinks, flavored medicine, and run from the remedies of the old days even if they worked. This makes me think about the changes in our culture over all.
Is the goal for personal pleasure and comfort taking us further and further from the old landmarks and more importantly God? Is the desire to please flesh suppressing the move of the Holy Spirit in our homes, communities, and churches? Has the pursuit of worldly measures to heal the hurting heart, mind, body, and soul taken away the true joy, peace, and deliverance that only Christ can give?
I think we can all sadly agree and answer, “yes” to each of the above. It’s way past time for us to go back to the old landmarks, and train up our children with the understanding of the need for boundaries to protect us and not bind us for the safety of our souls. It’s time for us to swallow the bitter pill of being separate and holy in a world that seemingly has found a better way and an easier way. It’s time to listen to the instructions and wisdom of our elders, those who have gone before us, to show us the way we should go. It’s time to lay aside every weight and every sin, and walk in the truth of the Word of God found in our bibles that many have set aside for an “easier way” sadly forgetting that the road to heaven is a narrow way. It’s time to pursue after God, and to find our way into a church preaching and teaching truth. It’s time to submit ourselves to the word that’s sharper than a two edged sword, and allow it to cut away everything in us that’s not like Christ. It’s going to hurt. It’s going to sting. It’s going to taste bitter at times, but in the end it will be worth it all!!
9 That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the Lord:
10 Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: