“Not for sale”

“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32

It has been truly awesome to watch the steady uprising of women who are tired of being chased around the proverbial desks. Those who have grown weary of the sexual harassment and unwelcome comments that have plagued women since the dawn of our time outside the garden.

I love how all have drawn courage from the others and rising one by one, proclaiming that they are simply not taking it any more. It has produced  a beautiful domino effect, as we watch powerful male after powerful male fall one on top the other. And that is TRUE feminism.

But we still have battles to fight, and roads to pave, because although we are TO BE considered “equal” on the surface while LIVING daily lives in a sub-culture of the under current of  being “fair game” in the workplace and honestly, many other places, we know we still have  along way to go.

We had only skimmed the surface and NOW we are dragging  the net and hauling all the predators out of our waters.

As a little girl I grew up during the feminist movement and I do realize that was a privilege because societal chains were being broken as many celebrities began using their star power to influence those just like me, the younger generation with their messages of equality sans ownership.

And as an American, I KNOW how blessed we are.

I know that in many countries our sisters live under the rule of men and even younger male relatives that they must “ask permission” of before making any decisions. The have NO rights, NO rights for freedom, NO rights for themselves, and no legal recourse whatsoever, and feel that they have NO way out, and often they don’t.

So we are blessed, we have the right to make our voices be heard. We have the rights to truly pursue those things that our constitution PROMISED us.

We have the right to seek legal remedy (though that has often been a bad one-sided joke, favoring the male) but fortunately that also is changing.. for the better. And we are blessed among nations in having those rights, that have been won through hard-fought battles.

Now time has come and the most basic of battles is being fought. But you know, as far as we have come, we are never going to get to where we need to go until we realize WHO we are.

I really think what happened along the way is that as we fought for those rights and became a prominent force outside of the home and as more women chose not to marry and the enemy spoon fed us the line of sexual freedom, it left us as vulnerable prey to the wolves of the world because the were NO clear-cut rules.

Only now they can use the “misunderstanding” plea. The is no way to EVER misunderstand someone’s unwanted, unwelcome attention. There is NO way to misunderstand lewd comments and gestures.

But for years, decades, eons, women had felt forced to tolerate this behavior as “part of life”, part of being in a “man’s world”. God never intended this as part of life, nor did He ever intend this to be a man’s world.

We ARE all created equal, at birth we ARE equal, and in God, as scripture states, “….There IS NEITHER male nor female; for ye are ALL one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28

We have allowed OURSELVES to be silenced, no one did that to us, we feel for that trick and now, finally awakening has come but we also need to awake to the truth. The truth of Jesus Christ.

The truth that all the beautiful reasoning’s of the heart and soul of the woman IS there because we were created by a beautiful Holy God who chose to place those things inside of in identifying us, as just that, womankind.

Different, because we are CREATED to be different and to ever buy into the lie that we are to just “grin and bear it” and accept behavior that hurt us, degrade us, and humiliate us as just “part of life” has been a greater tragedy that any prejudice shown us.

And while accepting this pack of lies that in order to play on an equal field we have to allow ourselves to be covered and in filth and mud from the other players, we have also bought into the biggest of those lies against us, that God is a woman-hater who is responsible for arranging the players on that field.

We have been guilty of selling ourselves for “nought”, which means nothing. We have accepted this offer for our “rights” that still keep us bound in chains of substandard humanism.

When Christ died to make us FREE, He came that we might not only have life but have it more abundantly and our freedom WAS purchased by Him in His blood.

Not given to us by any man or demanded through the court ordered through passage of laws. But given through Him and His death on the cross. He said, that we WILL know THAT truth and THAT truth WILL make us free.

NOW is the time, the time, as all this comes to light, as this “discussion” (I fail to see what there is to discuss, when “keep your hands off and your nasty thoughts to yourself ” should be evident and go without saying in ANY workplace) but as the discussion is finally taking place, it is prime time to also win women back to Christ through the TRUE Gospel.

Which is love, mercy, kindness, and best of all ABSOLUTE equality, protection and justice for us, and for all who have been oppressed. Embrace it! Whatever you ministry is, or if you have just felt led and not actually started a ministry yet. Pray about it and do it!

Take every opportunity given during this time of awaking, as women awake to the realization that we do not have to suffer this and we can change the world for our daughters and our daughters daughters, if time stands.

Through the example of only one person standing against any injustice, others are encouraged and inspired, and strengthened to also make that stand.

Wherever He has placed you today, use that place to stand and show others the truth and wisdom, and power in the word of God and encourage them to STOP selling themselves for nothing and to NEVER sell out their identity in God.

Εξυπνιζω NBJ 2017

 

Finding Paris

“The wilderness and the solitary (desert, lonely, desolate) place shall be glad for them, and the solitary place shall be glad for them and the desert SHALL rejoice and BLOSSOM AS THE ROSE.” Isaiah 35:1

Finding Paris, strange I know but trust me this is not going to be a world travel post but hopefully a travel to the inner space of ourselves and all those emotions and hopes, and dreams that old man time tends to run roughshod over and with the passage of time we forget that we even had those dreams.

The notion of “romantic” Paris is probably as old as dirt but the mention of the name usually brings to mind, roses, beauty, the Eiffel tower, whose reach toward the sky can be quite a reflection of reaching higher and the sheer romance of all it all will stir the feminine heart in a way unlike any other place on earth.

When as little girls do we first have those feelings that we are DIFFERENT, is in when we sneak into the perfumes, jewelry, and all the “womanly” treasures often found on the dressers of our mothers?

And for me there was nothing quite like the beautiful stationery that my big sister used when writing mushy love letters to her boyfriend who was in the army.

I’d watch her put the gold seal on the envelope and could not wait until I was big enough to have fancy gold seals and write mushy love letters!

And there was nothing quite like sitting playing with my doll watching her and Mom try new lipsticks and hairdo’s together because I SO was going to wear make up and do my hair just like them one day.

And I know you have your memories of when all things feminine, and beautiful stirred in you.

No matter what kind of a childhood you have had, even if it was not influenced by your own mother, there was still a lady, a grandmother, someone that you looked up as a what being female was all about.

There is always still some thread in time that influenced you and stirred thoughts in your heart and your soul that led to the journey of “finding Paris”, that beautiful place of womanhood that we are all eventually led to.

With me I really had to hold on, after my sister married and my mom started worked the majority of my time was spent with my brothers and that could be a whole other post series!

Hard to stay focused on future femininity with daily wrestling, name calling, and “gas” contests going on constantly between them, but thank goodness for afternoon television visits with Ginger Grant 😉 

So WHAT were your hopes, dreams, and destination as you planned as a child? Bear them in mind.

Usually, we do find “Paris”, when we are around fifteen or sixteen, we blossom, discover our own style, we grow inside and become more self-aware, and often more assertive in being allowed who we want to be.

There is a freedom in knowing who we are as women but life changes so fast, especially when we are young.

As as the clock starts to tick the newness wearing off, things never quite measuring up to what our expectations had been, and real life sets in.

Soon the moon over the tower loses luster and doesn’t shine quite so brightly and the captivating scents of jasmine and lilac fade, and petals start to fall from those beautiful roses.

Life does that, bad relationships do that, like countless women who married young, married FOREVER, expecting the road ahead to be filled with happiness, family and Prince Charming only to find that Prince Charming was in reality, the Prince of Persia, (a Biblical reference to Lucifer) that lied, cheated, and battered them and always managed to convince them that they were to blame.

And choosing to leave, others have been faced with being single mothers, taking on the role of both parents, doing the back breaking work of often working two jobs to provide and the double duty task of feeding, clothing, laundry, housework, not one moment for themselves or to worry about what they may need or even want because their children come first.

Others, for a multitude of reasonings, become entangled in bad lifestyle choices and professions that leave you in place alright, but it certainly isn’t paris.

And those who have had good lives but have suffered loss of family, friends, and worse of their children, have actually lost parts of themselves and have a hard time trying to move forward because their hearts long for the happy days of the past, the days when the still had those who have gone on.

The dreams of long ago have but vanished and just making it through the day, week, or month becomes the focus.

No joy, no hope, and no more believing for a “magical” age or time when things will change because as we become jaded, we lose hope, we lose faith, and we lose the ability to see past circumstances to see that “paris” is still really there, it still exists, we just have to find our way back to it and we have to find a way to rekindle the desire to even want to go there.

Last time we talked about aging and the fact that TIME is NOTHING to God, AGE is nothing to God.

He has ALL power in heaven and earth, and time bends to his will.

The scripture above so perfectly reflects what goes on in so many of us, the wilderness, the places we find ourselves in but can’t find our way out.

The lonely deserts, lonely, barren times in life when it seems that nothing you have planted will ever grow and all your best efforts are met with scorching thirst.

But it is in journeying to this place that you will find refreshment, you will find joy, and your hard, dry places will blossom with a beauty you have never known, God created us to have all those wonderful feelings and He wants you to feel loved, beautiful, and precious, and priceless in Him and only He can renew, restore, and rejuvenate all the areas inside and out in each of us that need refreshed.

That really is what it all about, you are still you, you are still the same person you were when He created you, NOTHING can ever change your core being. If you find yourself in a desert you need to stop and take stock, don’t look at the desert, don’t beat yourself up or question how you ended up there.

Ecclesiastes 7:10: “Say NOT thou, What IS THE CAUSE that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not enquire wisely concerning this.”

Which means that we are not to question that the past was better than our present and in doing so we are not asking the right question.

REMEMBER where you were going, what you wanted to accomplish, REVIVE your hopes, REMEMBER your dreams and ask God to show you what He wants you to see in that place.

It’s like the alabaster breaking, which will we soon get to, we have to want change, we have to be to the point that it is all or nothing and in that place your rose will again bloom and it will bloom abundantly and you will be made completely new.

Jesus NEVER touched or touches a life without that life being made COMPLETELY new, new thoughts, new joy, new peace, and a renewed hope that THIS IS ONLY THE BEGINNING and your life is a book not yet written. 

Of course, He knows the plans, but for us it is ALL BLANK PAGES AND A CLEAN SLATE and with that you can dream again, you can hope again, and you can feel beautiful, feminine, and BE exactly WHO HE CREATED YOU TO BE!

Don’t be so sure life is “over” when it has even yet begun!

So go, go find Paris! If you thought the first time was good, the second time is going to blow your mind! 

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

Have A Blessed Week! Εξυπιζω NBJ 2017

 

 

When in Rome… 2018

“Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through (in) the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord. 

According as his DIVINE POWER hath GIVEN unto us ALL things that pertain unto life and godliness, THROUGH the knowledge of him that HATH CALLED US TO GLORY AND VIRTUE.

Whereby ARE GIVEN unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the DIVINE NATURE, having escaped the corruption THAT IS IN THE WORLD through lust.” 2 Peter 1:2-4 

Lovin’ the old saying…”When in Rome… you know… “do as the Romans.” But I want to give you a slightly different take on it as we go into a new year.

We all know that when the clock strikes midnight, December 31st, no magic star-dust will be falling from the sky, we also know that Cinderella’s dress really doesn’t mystically transform back into soot covered, tattered rags.

But most do hold it as time is called on the stop watch of old and a new countdown is set for the future.

Which is why I always just go with it. I believe in HOPE and my HOPE is in the Lord but I will take a little extra encouragement wherever I can find it!

So here we go.. “When in Rome REMEMBER that while everyone was doing as everyone else.. Rome FELL!

Let’s check out our scriptures. Our starter verse greets us with the blessing of praying that grace and peace be multiplied to us! But we are quickly REMINDED that the multiplication of THAT grace and THAT peace comes IN the knowledge of God.

What is the knowledge of God? I personally believe that it would be keeping Him first and foremost in our hearts and our minds and most of all our EVERYDAY lives. Now that is NOT always easy!

But we know that he also PROMISED that he would “keep in PERFECT peace” those who keep their minds on Him. Making time every day to read at least one scripture or devotional. If you do not have morning time to read for yourself, sign up for daily verse emails (my husband reads his aloud for our family) and even social medias have many pages that offer this.

Another great way to stay spiritually fed while multi-tasking is to consider CD’s or electronic devices that you can listen to while driving, cleaning, or while doing almost anything.

It is also great to listen to good, Bible based preaching BUT it is so important to get the actual WRITTEN WORD of God in your Spirit. When we get the Word of God on the “tables of our heart” God uses that to reveal to us what He is saying to us PERSONALLY, not just as it had been revealed to one of His ministers.

I am in no way kicking that, that is His intention by having those who are called to preach the Gospel. But sometimes He will reveal a certain take on a scripture just for you for a certain season or particular battle.

Think about His statement from John 14:26: “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”

We  have to have His word in us so that it can be brought back to our remembrance because we have can no memory of that which we have not learned. this is one of those when in Rome areas, we can not rest our knowledge of Christ solely upon what is being taught to us.

We know that currently the world is full of false teaching concerning God and especially concerning holiness and acceptable behaviors.  This gets us into our verse dealing with the fact that we have BEEN CALLED OUT of this world.

We are no longer partakers of the world and the sins and snares thereof. A life that we could not free ourselves from BUT a life in which we are called into.

A life that has been GIVEN by absolute DIVINE power that allows to overcome those snares and traps to live inside that realm of virtue and the blessed state of His glory shining on our lives, in the midst of even the darkness of this world.

And these are those promises, that we are called out and called into Him and that through him and His promises that we will escape the lusts of this world that corrupts us.

Think about the word lust.. not the just the sexual sense. The sexual sense is actually the LEAST of the lusts we have to battle. it simply means DESIRE and think of all the desires our flesh has to battle… daily.

The desire of life, the desire of work, the desire to excel in whatever we have chosen. The desire for monetary gains, the desire for popularity, the desire to be liked, loved, needed, or even the desire to be pretty, articulate, even the desire to be “desirable” NOT in the lustful sense but in the attractive sense.

Even the desire to be competitive, the desire to get even, the desire to be “one up” on a foe.  ANYTHING, any emotion, any thought, ANYTHING has the potential to BECOME lustful if not carefully checked against the word of God. 

That was the trouble with the  ancient Romans. They actually took their ideas for their society from the Greeks. They just made everything BIGGER and BETTER than what the Greeks had. The Greeks worshipped twelve “gods’ so the Romans added two and worshipped fourteen. They built their society based on the thoughts and ideas stolen from the Greeks and as we all know became the world power of the day.

But we also know when it fell.. “great was the fall” and will never again rise to its former stature. We, as a society, take our cues from the media and entertainment, and most horrifically the voice that cries the loudest.

Often thoughts and ideas of a very small group of people become force-fed into mainstream population by the media and soon EVERYONE is EXPECTED to conform to that thought or image, when it is not actually even the popular thought.

It is time to relinquish the societal control that we allow to dictate our lives, thoughts, and desires BACK to God so that we can TRULY be conformed to His will, HIS purpose and most of all HIS divine nature.

So “destroy” that influence over your life in the coming new year. basically, if it does not honor God, do not give it honor by allowing whatever that force is to influence your life. If you are doing or seeing anything that you could not see or do with Jesus beside you.. then simply do not allow that to have any place in your thoughts, life, or family.

Check out what He told the Hebrews, Deuteronomy 7:2-6: “And when the Lord thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them, thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them:

Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. For they WILL turn away thy son FROM FOLLOWING ME, that they may serve other gods, so will the anger of the Lord be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly.

But thus (here’s how) ye shall deal with them; ye shall destroy their altars, and break down their images, and cut down their groves, and burn their graven images with fire.

For thou ART (you are) AN HOLY (set apart) PEOPLE UNTO GOD; THE LORD THY GOD HATH CHOSEN THEE TO BE A SPECIAL PEOPLE (treasure) UNTO HIMSELF, above all the people that are upon the face of the earth.”

As you see THIS is the word of God. HE IS telling us through it that just as the Hebrews were to NOT to have any dealings whatsoever ever with those who were their enemies that we are to NOT have any dealings whatsoever with those things today that ARE our SPIRITUAL enemies.

And notice that He did INCLUDE our children and what we allow to influence them and HE told us in no uncertain terms that exposure to these enemies would lead to REBELLION against Him. That we are to DESTROY those things out of our lives BECAUSE He has called us as His. And fortunately for us, it is much easier NOW to remove those spiritual enemies by making our choices based on His teachings.

So don’t let this world influence your life, you influence the world by living your life for Him!

Finally a couple of quick notes… WHY did Cinderella’s shoes NOT change when everything else did in that fairy-tale? Anyone else ever wonder about that 🙂 ?

Also if you are reading internationally, please know that this title and reference to the old saying and ancient Rome in NO WAY reflects my feelings toward Rome… or Romans, this has been completely symbolic. Rome is a beautiful place that I would love to visit one day!

And I also wanted to thank you all again from the bottom of my heart for reading this past year and it is my sincerest prayer that you be blessed with new revelations, new joy, and the happiness and peace that can only be found in a true personal relationship with our Lord and Creator Jesus Christ of Nazareth! Amen!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017

Relinquishing Regret

Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; according to thy mercy remember me for thy goodness’ sake O Lord. Good and upright IS the Lord: therefore he will teach sinners in the way. The meek (humble) will he guide in judgment(justice): and the meek he will teach his way.

ALL the paths of the Lord are MERCY and TRUTH unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies. For thy name’s sake, O, Lord, pardon mine iniquity, for it is great.” Psalm 25: 7-11

Nothing can eat away our life, our health, and our soul quite like guilt. The most self destructive of all human emotions and the biggest of all burdens that are to be brought and LEFT AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS. 

It is often the binding tie that satan uses to hold his prisoners captive, convincing them in themselves that they DO NOT deserve to be free from the chains of actions taken yesterday whose consequences are forever now written.

He uses it on Christians, who even though they have come to the cross, they have failed to lay down that burden and continue to beat and badger themselves over and over again, not accepting the truth of forgiveness and allowing that guilt and regret to taint and rob the joy and peace that Jesus provided at the cross.

When we are constantly emotionally punishing ourselves over and over, the enemy has little to fear because we are doing his job for him. Why does he need to accuse the brethren when the brethren accuse themselves?

Regret WIIL make you sick, it WILL make you miserable, and it can very well lead you to hell, IF you allow guilt and regret to prevent you from accepting God’s salvation.

We can think we are not worth but Jesus thought we were VERY MUCH WORTH IT and He gave His life for ALL our sins. ALL of our mistakes, shortcomings, and failures and to hold the guilt rather than accepting forgiveness is making our guilt our god.

Regret is just guilt’s enabler, a life spent pondering things we could have and should have done is again a life, precious, given of God, completed wasted in endless analytical thoughts of how things could have been different.

Guilt and regret have no place in your life, they are past tense only and to bring them with you in the present is only sabotaging your future and the well-being and futures of all you interact with and have influence with.

As we know I am BIG on preaching influence because WE all have influence, even if you live alone, you have the POWER to impact others, someway, somehow, or maybe due to your availability, there is a ministry of service and outreach with “your name written all over it”, just waiting in the background, until you are ready to shed guilt and regret, send them packing, and spread your spiritual wings and let God lead you where HE ALREADY PREDESTINED FOR YOU TO GO!

But if your holding guilt and regret, He is NOT going to just reach down and jerk them out of your hands, YOU HAVE TO BE WILLING TO LET THEM GO! Then He can give you all the good things of His mercy and His Truth that HE WANTS TO GIVE YOU.

The verses above, for me is the absolute guide to repentance, quoted them many, many times myself and when I was first saved it was reading these verses over and over through floods and rivers of tears.

We have ALL messed up, we have ALL sinned, we have ALL been best friends with guilt and regret, but Jesus is faithful and HE wants us to let them go and TRUST in Him and forget all those things and press on, IN HIM.

And the ONLY way to true freedom IS found in Him and His blood and the washing by that blood, we can’t drink them away, can’t snort them away, and your sure not going to wish them away, all the methods people use in attempt to dull their inner pain always ends the same, once your down and the crash comes your only more messed up and deeper and deeper in that sinking pit and NOTHING is going away, more regret is just being added.

Continuing in Psalm 25:12-22: ” What man (human) is he that feareth the Lord? him shall he teach in the way that he shall choose. HIS SOUL SHALL DWELL AT EASE (in goodness) and his seed (descendants) shall inherit the earth.

The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him; and he will shew (cause them to know) his covenant. Mine (my) eyes are ever toward the Lord; FOR HE SHALL PLUCK MY FEET OUT OF THE NET. Turn thee unto me, (please come to me) have mercy upon me; for I am desolate (lonely) and afflicted.

THE TROUBLES OF MY HEART ARE ENLARGED (burdened with worry, guilt, regret) ;O BRING THOU ME OUT OF MY DISTRESSES. LOOK UPON MINE AFFLICATION AND MY PAIN; AND FORGIVE MY SINS. Consider mine enemies (negative emotions and even ourselves ARE enemies); for they hate me with a cruel hatred.

O keep my soul, and DELIVER ME: let me not be ashamed; for I put my TRUST IN THEE. Let integrity and uprightness preserve me; for I WAIT ON THEE (wait IN FAITH on thee). Redeem Israel, O, God, out of ALL his troubles.”

Jesus is more than willing to heal us in these places, if we only ask. So many are trapped in prisons of heartache, regret, and remorse but PLEASE, PLEASE, as a minister of HIS GRACE, I am pleading with you, DON’T STAY THERE.

We ALL have those spans of time we dearly wish would could go back and change.. but we can’t. What we CAN change is how those times can be used to propel you into your destiny and in to the kingdom where you can maybe one day use those lessons learned to help another NOT make the same choices.

As my very wise sister always says, it really is like burying something dead and going back and digging up rotten old bones.Take them to the cross and leave them there and never think about them again.

God gives us beauty for ashes, to produce ashes something has had to burn. Don’t wait another moment, You can talk to God anywhere,  you don’t have to be in a church house, HE WILL MEET YOU WHEREVER YOU ARE.

STOP being your own enemy and unwittingly sabotaging your own life, lay guilt and regret, and all that hurts you today, on HIS altar and let it all be burned away. Let a NEW day unfold because you will never EVER know freedom until you are FREE in Him. Blessing and Peace to you in Jesus’ name.

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017

 

 

“How do I love thee?”

“Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord; And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words,which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart.” Deuteronomy 6:4-6

Old school groove, “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways” that one has been around for ages! But it is  wonderful question, once Jesus gives us those new hearts and leads us in His paths, we are met with that question, once the true realization of His presence and love is known to you, as He said, He will give you a heart to KNOW him, then we are faced with the humanly overwhelming question of how do you relay your love back to the God of the universe, who created heaven and earth , and who can hold time, space, and eternity in the palm of His hand and if He wanted, He could speak one word and completely destroy every single thing that now exists?

Obviously, as mere mortals, it would seem that we have nothing, nothing to offer as a token of our love in return, our love to Him for creating us, caring for us, and most of all dying on a cross for us so that we could be saved, and never giving up on us.

So how do we love Him and what exactly is it that He wants? Well, we are created in His image and He wants the same thing we want from Him, He wants our love and our heart, and He does not want a little portion of our hearts, you know a spot that remains empty while the main space is taken by other people, other things that we cling too while He gets whatever love is left. He will not go for that, not now, not ever.

No He wants ALL our heart or none of our heart, that is why he said to seek Him with our WHOLE heart. he wants a real relationship and not to be a God in the distance in our lives, He wants fellowship with us and this has become so messed up in the world thinking. He is love BUT He also tells us if we love Him, we WILL keep His commandments and when you think about it, there is nothing on that list that is unreasonable and every single command He has ever handed down is FOR OUR GOOD.

So we have to get into that thinking that He IS love and He IS our friend but we are also required by that love to do as He asks. Our world has major rebellion problems on this one, it is taught as well He loves us, we can do what makes us happy, No, that is NOT loving Him, that is trying to compare His goodness toward us with some sort of fairy godfather who grants your every whim. And that is in no way loving Him or respecting Him, that is loving our flesh and being so arrogant as to think our DESIRES are of a higher value than His Holiness, and that kinda thinking will get a person a quick trip to the grave.

“But the hour cometh, and now IS, when true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship him. GOD IS A SPIRIT: and they that worship him must worship him in SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH.” John 4:23,24

So we know with Jesus arrival on earth, all things were changed and no longer were prayers and sacrifice made by a priest needed and all who truly believe could be allowed entry into the Holy of Holies through his presence with the gift of the Holy Ghost.

This is where we must worship in TRUTH, truth to who He is, truth of His commands, truth of His word, and keeping our lives and actions subjected into and under that TRUTH. We worship Him in Spirit, in His presence  in the “places” of salvation:

“But thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise” Isaiah 60:18(a)

Believers are surrounded by those walls of salvation in your worship time and praise is the gate by which we enter and there you worship in fellowship, love, and adoration and there you know Him and receive joy, peace, and assurance and rest from your troubles. 

So here is a scriptural checklist:

Deuteronomy 10:12 : “And now Israel, what doth the Lord thy God require of thee? But (only) to fear the Lord thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the Lord thy God WITH ALL THY HEART and ALL THY SOUL.” 

Deuteronomy 11:13-14:  “And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, and the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather  in thy corn, thy wine, and thine oil.”

That is His promises to us of all good things, and the word of God, the bread of life, his blessings, His anointing. So now we answer the question.. “My Dear Lord HOW do I love thee?  We enter into your presence with thanksgiving and praise, and in the safety of your pavilion surrounded by those walls of your salvation we will allow ourselves to be taught, loved, and led!

This is the how you count the ways! Seek Him, Love Him, Honor Him, and get to know Him, and let His blessings and His mercy transform you!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

“Vexing Vineyard Variances”

“Now will I sing to my well beloved a song touching (concerning) his vineyard, My beloved has a vineyard in a very fruitful hill: And he fenced it, and gathered the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes and it brought forth wild grapes. 

And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray (ask) you, betwixt (between) me and my vineyard. WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN MORE DONE TO MY VINEYARD? THAT I HAVE NOT DONE IN IT? wherefore, when I looked that is should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes? ISAIAH 5:1-4

As God describes the planting of his vineyard, he chose a spot with rich, fertile soil, He cleared out all the weeds, briers, and all that could hinder and choke the new plantings.

He then removed all the rocks and debris that could hold back the tender shoots and He then planted the absolute best of vine, He himself being the tower in the midst of it. Watching and protecting the young vines, as they could grow without disturbance as beasts would try to trample and destroy them.

The winepress ready and waiting the harvest of grapes that was to come and produce magnificent. new wine, the Father’s own personal signature selection. But instead of producing the grapes needed for this particular vintage, wild, bitter, strong, unpleasant, nasty grapes grew instead. He tells us to judge this matter for ourselves…  Is the problem with the planting or is it a problem with the vineyard itself?

HE THEN ASKS THE QUESTION…that should terrify us all, What more could MORE COULD HAVE BEEN DONE THAT HE HAS NOT ALREADY DONE?

Kinda what is going on with the “falling away” we are now under, like the breaks and wounds body of Christ that are allowed to continue without remedy and without even caring to heal them, and churches of the modern-day that are seemingly unaware that when one member hurts, we ALL hurt, and continue to allow the Gospel to be falsely advertised and outright sold and not only do they not speak out against these things, they often help promote the very ones who perpetrate these “crimes” committed against the cause, verse 7:…. and he looked for judgement (justice), but beheld oppression; for righteousness but beheld a cry.”

To not speak out on behalf of the truth, makes us all guilty of these things, and too easily we forget that we,  ALL the members,ALL the churches, ARE ALL ONE BODY and “in that day His name shall be one” and we’d better start getting in that ONE mindset here or we just not make it to even be there.

What more could He do for us? And as we know, and I will not get repetitive, even though I really want to.. but we all know the major problems of today. There is often not enough love, caring, and general goodwill  between members of the vine, which cause essential growth nutrients to be siphoned away from the small grapes and over ripening the mature ones and too much money-grubbing, self promoting, ulterior motive impeding the vine’s overall general growth.

He will absolutely not lose His harvest because of a bunch of bad grapes! I really believe  major change is coming soon and the vineyard will be pruned, all the vines, as He says, that do not produce fruits will be cut away and all the bad grapes, all those who have held the positions and the ministry that have further alienated people AWAY from the Gospel through their false representations of the heart of Christ, will allowed to fall to the ground, just as when a grape withers and rots away on the vine, finally falling useless to the ground.

Whatever places they held will be given to the “new grapes” that are growing up into the vine as we speak, and that new wine will be wine for all, not just a select few and they will have a heart for God and for His people, they will see to the widows, and the fatherless, and they will care for those who are outcast, sick, and spiritually wounded.

They will be the leaders and ministers for the church and know that they ARE for the church, and not fall for the power tripping trap that the CHURCH IS FOR THEM. They will go forth in faith knowing that God will supply all their needs in unfolding ministries and that He is quite capable of furnishing the house and they will be those who “instead of thy fathers shall be thy children”… these will be the true fruits of God’s vineyard.

Time to check what’s growing and do some pruning and purging, better to tend what we can than to be cut down, cast out, and burned up, never, ever to grow again.

When we know it is ABOUT HIM and not us!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  NBJ 2016

“Feet First”

Beauty, what a word. What a list of infinite definitions. EVERYONE has a different definition of what is beautiful and yet we often find ourselves feeling the pressure of a senseless society to attempt to obtain those unclear and ever evolving levels of the standard of beauty.

This had been rattling around in my head for quite a while, but once I began to pray the way He led me was quite unexpected. With the holiday happenings, most of us feel that we NEED to look our best and of course with the busiest time of the year, that is sometimes even harder and once nature and time comes into play… well the temptation of all the vast beauty “solutions” become harder to resist.

We all have “THOSE” people to deal with, you know the ones that you really don’t know if they are a “test” on patience and tongue bridling or if they are just sent from the devil to make you feel inferior and that your head belongs in a  bag.

The root of it has NOTHING to do with how we really look, it has to do with our perceived ACCEPTANCE and self-worth and all the Botox in the world cannot produce the true glow of what God has ordained to shine in us.

And I know so many ladies who suffer the onslaught of remarks and jabs at their self-worth. Our family actually knows one lady who manages to insult everyone that she runs into. She is a constant barrage of “You are looking old, you need to get something done” and forever running down others who are not even present, with so and so “Sure has let themselves go” and she seems to have a chart of exactly what each person should weigh, and in her mind she is the score keeper on status quo of how we all should appear.

My family and I ran into her awhile back and I seriously prayed the entire time, I was like Lord, please don’t let her start because if she hurts one of mine with her words,  I really don’t know that I could not have “returned” her the favor with some advice of my own concerning her own appearance. But Jesus is awesome like that, she did not say a word, I’m sure she said plenty the moment we were gone but I know those biting words “come out of the abundance of her own heart” and that is truly sad.

I detest hearing anyone comment on people’s weight and have lost the control over my tongue on more than one occasion. I hate it, probably because I struggled and struggled being skinny and flat chested (still flat chested) during my teen years as my friends “blossomed” and all I heard was “that a good puff of wind could blow me away” you often hear the hurtful remarks in the other direction but believe me, people are mean because they are just mean and they will find a way to hurt you no matter your size because your size is really not their issue.

The issue is to hurt you to feel better about themselves. Funny story with that, my husband briefly worked with a guy that we hadn’t seen in probably twenty years and my husband said one of the first things he had asked was about my weight, a few weeks later, Lo, and behold, “test?/temptation?”  we ran into him and I truly could have had a sadistic field day going off on his fallen attributes, but I didn’t, sure is nice to know my body shape meant so much to him.

God has brought me  along way from that little girl who so desperately needed acceptance, because the acceptance I needed to gain COULD never be achieved, not through make-up, not through dating a virtual army, not through any one man because who I need to “prove” my worth to no longer existed and would have never accepted it, if I were dipped in gold I would still have been utterly worthless.

But see THIS is where all this comes from in all of us and society has run wild with it. I do not own a scale, and I will never allow one brought into my home, I don’t need the drama, I’m going to weigh what I am going weigh.  I do wrestle with fear that Marty Stuart is gonna call and want his hair back, (no offense to him, it looks good on him, not so much on me) while other days the clowns would declare me their leader because the “fro knows” and the fro knows humidity well, and it will burst through any styling product with an absolute vengeance and all the lines, droops and scarves made of neck flesh bear witness to the fact that the old “Brown” mare ain’t as young as she used to be.

But when my thirty-six year old niece who is very beautiful informed me that she wanted to get the new “double chin” therapy, I was just disturbed. This is a major epidemic and there are plenty of celebrities that have taken plastic surgeries to the extreme in searching for the fabled fountain of youth that they now look more like cartoon characters and there is nothing remotely attractive about any of it.

So here is what He enlightened me to, because we know He does not approve of vanity, intentional or unintentional and THERE IS NOTHING WRONG IN WANTING TO LOOK YOUR BEST, He wants us to feel beautiful, but BEAUTIFUL IN HIM, that does not start looking in the mirror at our own face, nor does it start by looking in the eyes of another for approval.

It does not start with hair, faces, bodies, clothes or any other decorative ornamentation known to man. It happens feet first and works its way up.  REVELATION 4:11 : ” Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for THOU HAST CREATED ALL THINGS, AND FOR THY PLEASURE THEY ARE AND WERE CREATED.”

That includes US. We all have some type of creativity because God puts that in all of us, whether it is culinary masterpieces, floral arranging, crafts, sewing, woodworking, pottery, on and on, but we ENJOY what we create and we create it they way WE want it. So also, HE CREATED US, THEY WAY HE WANTED US.

Beauty is not found in the three-inch heels encasing the soles of our feet, it is found in our souls touching HIS feet and “uncovering” that mystery, it is an intimacy and a place of humble worship, not worshiping the fashion gods, but worshipping the true and living God. True beauty is found not in becoming obsessed with our “beauty” but becoming obsessed with HIS BEAUTY.

And that my dear friends is from the inside out and will rock you to your core and produce a glow that everyone will know. Now why do I think you have to pursue this?

Humility, a fully aware willingness to surrender, willingness to submit, all those “s” words that strike horror and outrage into our proud little minds in our new self-righteous, always right society, to a being that is supernatural, all-powerful, and holds life, death and heaven and hell in His hand and allow His complete control over your soul, your body, your will and allow Him to take you into that inner sanctum of His Holy Presence where you will worship in the absolute BEAUTY OF HIS HOLINESS and there you will find your self-worth and you will find a beauty that can never be bought, dyed, or injected into you.

How do I know that we “resist” this intimacy with the Lord? Our go to book on issues of the church concerning her King;

Song of Solomon:1:7: ” Tell me, O thou whom my soul loveth, where thou feedest, where thou makest thy flocks to rest at noon: for WHY SHOULD I be as one that turneth aside by the flocks of thy companions?”

Wasn’t a question of love, the love was there, it was a question to the submission in humility, she wanted all the answers up front, she questioned WHY SHOULD she have to appear to be of a more questioned character, WHY should she have to “lower” herself in her pursuit of him? It would be good enough for “others” to do that, but oh, no not her. See the religious snobbery there? Remember we were created, we did not create Him.

You can see the foreshadowing for this need of surrender, and not just surrender to salvation, in Ruth, we’ll pick it up as Naomi advised her in more or less a marriage proposal to Boaz, as he was by right a kinsmen.

RUTH 3: 3-11: “Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment (best clothes) upon thee, and get thee down to the floor: and make not thyself known unto the man, UNTIL he shall have done eating and drinking.

And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do.

Want to stop there for just a second, notice she listened to wisdom, she was clean and presented herself at her best (take that spiritually), she was to not interrupt him, as with Solomon’s “stir not up my love until he pleases” WE WAIT ON THE LORD, not jump up and down and demand an audience with him, she was then to uncover his feet, that place of intimacy and THEN LAY HER SELF DOWN, leaving all that she was, SO SHE COULD HEAR HIM.

Picking back up at verse five: ” And she said unto her, ALL that thou sayest unto me, I WILL DO. And she went down unto the floor, and did according to all that her mother in law bade her. And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of corn: and she came softly, and uncovered his feet, and laid her down.

And it came to pass at midnight, that the man was afraid (startled), and turned himself; and behold, a woman lay at his feet. And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth, thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt (garment corner) OVER thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsmen.”

Think about the Lord “lifting up His countenance” on us, that is His  APPEARANCE, His protection, His covering all the way around us.

Verse 10,11: ” And he said, Blessed be thou of the Lord, my daughter: for thou hast shewed more kindness in thy latter end than in thy beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst NOT young men, whether poor or rich.

And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requires ( ask); for the city of people know that thou art a virtuous woman.”

Notice she was BLESSED of the Lord for not pursing the other “things” but pursing the RIGHT path. This union would ultimately produce King David and we will now pay a visit to another lady who laid herself at the feet of the ultimate production of that bloodline:

Mark 5:25-34: “And a certain woman which had an issue of blood twelve years, and had SUFFERED many things of many physicians, and had spent ALL she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse.

When she heard of Jesus, came in the press (crowd) BEHIND, and TOUCHED HIS GARMENT. For she said, IF I MAY TOUCH BUT (even) HIS CLOTHS, I SHALL BE MADE WHOLE.

And straightway,(immediately) the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague. And Jesus immediately knowing in himself that virtue (POWER) had gone out of him, turned him to the press and said, Who touched my clothes?

And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. But the woman fearing and trembling, KNOWING what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. And he said unto her, Daughter,thy faith has made the whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.”

Now as most know, to have any bleeding made the woman unclean and under mosaic law, no one could go near her, but the beauty of Jesus is that transcends all laws and human conditions and she knew just making it to His feet would indeed heal her completely.

Mary proclaimed that her soul did magnify the Lord, when she was overshadowed by the Holy Ghost the magnification of His Presence through her and in her soul brought forth that conception, as His power went forth to heal the terrified lady at His feet, as Mary Magdalene found forgiveness, love, and unimaginable peace at His feet, we also will only find what we need in His presence.

Don’t buy into the world view of finding it any other way, don’t buy into the lies that you are of a lesser value based on idiotic notions of this world. You will never know who you are or what beautiful really is until you lay yourself, all of yourself, all the insecurities, hurts, wounds down and “uncover” the truth of time well spent at the feet of the only one worthy of praise, the only one who possesses true beauty and the only one who can make you feel beautiful when His love beams through you.

1 SAMUEL 2:1-4: “And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged (smiles) over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation, There is NONE holy as the Lord: for there is NONE beside thee: NEITHER is there any other rock like our God. Talk no more exceeding proudly; let NOT arrogancy come out of your mouth; for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. The bows of the mighty men are broken; and They that stumbled are girded with strength.

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

 

This is absolutely my favorite Praise and worship song. And so perfectly descriptive of Him.