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Monthly Archives: December 2013

The Friendship of Jesus!

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Photo Credit: Passion of the Christ Movie (Pintrest)

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends,~John 15:13.

Sometimes we rely too heavily on people. It can be family, friends, coworkers, or people in church. The truth is unless our lives are being fueled first by God, we are in trouble. People will fail you, some will leave you, hurt you, and some disappoint you. I’ve found God will strategically put us in places where He is the only One we can trust, rely on, confide in, find comfort, hope, love, and support from. He’s not punishing us; He’s transforming us (if we let Him).

Those seasons are challenging and every one is not authored by God. He can and will use anything for our good. Losing loved ones to death is not the topic of this post. God brings comfort to all who mourn and has great compassion on His children. People are meant to comfort one another. However, people were never intended to replace God in our lives or become our primary source.

Help I need somebody!:

Our flesh cries out for the security blanket of another person during trying and challenging times. People also displace God in good times. If we run to God, we will find the following:

1. Only God has an unlimited supply of what we need: love, support, wisdom, healing, joy, comfort…He never grows tired or weary. People do.

2. God is jealous to be first in our lives, even before our families. Anyone or anything we love more than Him, spend more time with than Him, care more about or care more about their approval, etc…is our idol. At the end of our lives we will stand before Him alone. Our idols (including ourselves) will always disappoint.

3. God wants to teach us. Hard times are learning times and character building times if we dive deep into His Presence. They are seasons of preparation, purging, cleansing, growing, and for those grieving-finding comfort in God.

4. Everything happens in seasons. Trouble doesn’t last always! It won’t always be winter. And normally God places people in your life who are in the opposite season so you can learn and serve. Those who are experiencing great joy can encourage those in hard times and mourn with those who mourn. Those in hard times can learn to celebrate with those who are celebrating and find hope.

5. It’s not about us, it’s about God. It seems harsh, but it’s true. While God cares about every single detail of our lives, His primary agenda is to love us. Part of that love is molding us into the likeness of His Son (not by our self efforts-by the power of His Spirit). He’s eager for the world to be changed by His power working through us. Our lives are not our own, but were purchased with the blood of Jesus. We were born with a divine purpose.

6. We will find that God is good and better than any person we’ve ever met! He’s the source, everything and everyone else are resources. He heals, makes us whole, ministers to deep levels of pain, comforts, encourages, and transforms us from the inside out.

7. God knows how to have a good time! He’s not boring. Oh boy does He know how to fill a place with goodness. He laughs. He sings. He deposits joy!!! He knows how to party. We don’t find that out until we decide as Moses did to stop and turn to the burning bush. We often miss God because we are so busy looking for someone or something to give us what we need.

8. God wants us to be powerful, not pitiful. I’ve found that God doesn’t like pity parties. Not because He’s rude or uncaring or lacking compassion. It’s because He knows how powerful He is, and His Spirit in us is the same One who raised Jesus from the dead. Nothing is too hard for God. Unbelief is a damaging and blessing blocking sin, for without faith it’s impossible to please God. Pity parties are self focused. God wants us to be God focused. Jesus didn’t go to the cross so we could live defeated. He conquered death! He speaks sweetly to us: LIVE! He doesn’t scream at us, “Get it together already, stop whining!” He does lovingly point us to the truth of who He is. He’s patient and compassionate. He longs for us to view life through His eyes and live empowered lives.

Whether you have an abundance of people supporting you/encouraging you, or no human being at all; know God is for you. God is cheering for you! Jesus is praying for you! He’s the One to cling to. He’s all you need. You plus God is a winning team. Come to Jesus. It’s all for Him, about Him, and being held together by Him. By no other name can anyone be saved. And how He loves you so!

May we seek first God and His Kingdom. He’s worthy!
May we let Him flow through us to be a tremendous blessing to every person we meet.
We are called, chosen, loved, accepted, empowered, and set apart for His glory!

Love,

Erin

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2013 in From the Author, God's Heart

 

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The Power of Jesus

God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him,~Acts 10:38.

Merry Christmas to you and your families! I hope and pray it’s a time of reflection, gratitude, and thanksgiving. For those who are sorrowful, stressed, sick, or hurting this season-my prayers and love are with you. I hope this post brings hope and comfort to your heart.

The verse above is from the book of Acts. It talks about the ministry of Jesus. It’s easy to adore a child in a manger. It’s custom to thank a Savior who died on a cross for our sins. We can’t, however, stop and fail to miss the reason why He came. Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil. The devil comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Jesus came so we could have life and life more abundantly (John 10:10).

Let’s look at a few more verses about Jesus.

In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs
,~Hebrews 1:1-4.

The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn,and provide for those who grieve in Zion– to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor,~Isaiah 61:1-3.

And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross,~Col 2:15.

Jesus came not only to save us from eternal separation from God; He came to do what’s listed above…

Destroy the works of the devil
Heal the sick
Open blind eyes (spiritual and natural)
Preach the Gospel
Bind up the broken hearted
Free the captives (those oppressed by the evil one)
Comfort those who mourn
Bestow beauty for ashes
Give joy for mourning
Clothe people in garments of righteousness and praise
Proclaim the words of the Father
Hold all things together by His powerful word
Show the world the Father
Care for the poor
Provide abundant life for those who believe
Defeat death and provide eternal life for those who believe!

We do not serve a weak, pitiful, or powerless God! He did not remain a babe in a manger. He did not remain on a cross. He rose with all power in His hands, and He reigns eternal. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. May we give thanks for Jesus this Christmas and every day! He’s worthy.

Whatever you need, God can provide it. Praying for you and your families. God bless you!

Love in Christ,

Erin

 
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Posted by on December 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

The Presence of Jesus!

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Photo Credit: Worship University

Wherever Jesus went, there was some kind of stirring. His very presence shifted atmospheres.

Jesus went about doing good, preaching the Gospel, mingling with outcasts, inviting people to be His disciples, forgiving sins, healing the sick, raising the dead, and ministering to the broken hearted.

(Matthew 4:23 NKJV) And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.

(Matthew 14:14 NKJV) And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.

One touch from Jesus does so much:

One of my favorite stories about Jesus was the healing of the woman with the issue of blood. For years she suffered emotionally and physically. To touch her would make you ceremonially unclean. She made her way through the crowds and when she touched the hem of His garment, she was made whole.

(Luke 8:47 NKJV) Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.

It only took one touch from the hem of His garment.

Inviting Jesus in; expecting things to change:

The Presence of God can change a circumstance or person in one second. What we could not do on our own, He can accomplish without effort. God is beyond amazing. The same Jesus who healed the sick, raised the dead, forgave our sins, delivered us from evil, is alive today.

He gave those who believe in Him the ability to go boldly before the Father. He invites us into relationship, fellowship, and intimacy. He wants to be invited into our lives and for us to believe things will change.

If our circumstances don’t turn out the way we think they should, we can trust God will strengthen us or change us through our circumstances. He works for good, not evil.

Relationship with God:

If our relationship with God is limited to the information a Pastor gives us on Sunday, it may be more difficult to have a flourishing relationship with Him. He longs for a personal relationship with every person. He longs to commune with us. If we only talk to someone once a week for a few minutes, it’s much different than if we spoke with them daily. We don’t earn brownie points by pursuing God as He’s pursuing us. We will see change in our lives from walking closely with Him.

I believe the greatest gift aside from forgiveness of sins is to enjoy God! Yes, enjoy Him. He’s not boring, stale, or stuffy. He is delightful, filled with wisdom and insight, full of joy and hope, a great encourager, and life with Him is a glorious adventure! There’s nothing like His presence.

This Christmas season I pray our hearts are soft to the presence of Jesus. He is the best gift the world has ever received. May we seek His presence more than His presents. For encountering Jesus is life changing!

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Posted by on December 7, 2013 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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The Supremacy of Jesus

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Photo credit: Pinterest

There are so many images of Jesus on the cross. There are many images of Him in a manger. It is important to recognize the beauty of His birth (God came down and entered humanity) and His death on a cross for our sins. The life of Jesus is supernatural, amazing, and filled with hope!

We cannot leave Jesus in a manger (sweet little baby Jesus). Nor can we leave Him hanging on a cross for our sins. If Jesus was just a good man who walked the earth preaching and performing miracles, we would all still be lost. Why? Because this life would be powerless and we would be without His resurrection power working in us. We would be without the Life Giving source which is Christ in us. We would have no hope for our own mortal bodies to be quickened.

Let’s see what Colassians and Ephesians have to say about Jesus.

Col 1:15-23

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation—if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

Ephesians 1:19-23.

I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself.

Jesus is supreme. The Father did not leave Him on a rugged cross, but raised Him on the third day with ALL power in His hands. He is high and lifted up. He is seated at the right hand of the Father. He has all authority. He reigns victorious! He defeated all our enemies including death. Those who belong to Him will not perish, but have eternal life with Him in paradise. Jesus is not depressed; He’s alive and filled with joy. He has nothing to fear for He is not and cannot be defeated! What a mighty God we serve.

There’s no evil and no person more powerful than Jesus!

There’s no situation so hopeless it cannot be redeemed by Jesus!

There is no person so far gone they can’t be transformed by Jesus!

There’s no problem so challenging it cannot be answered by Jesus!

What are you facing in life my friends? What’s burdening down your heart and spirit? Have you taken it to Jesus? He is more than willing to step into any situation and bring you help, comfort, peace, strength, love, joy, and so much more!

This season let’s keep our eyes fixed on a Jesus. He is the gift that keeps on giving. He is our Savior, Redeemer, Healer, Strength, and Joy! You are so deeply loved (John 3:16), and if you’re following Jesus-you have a sure hope. He’s empowered you to live a victorious life. Praying you and I live empowered by the supremacy of Christ! He is King!

Love in Christ,

Erin

Jesus is wonderful, powerful, beautiful, glorious, matchless in every way!!!

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2013 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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