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Releasing What You Carry (Manifesting Sonship Series Part VI)

  
Blessed and worthy of praise be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms in Christ, just as [in His love] He chose us in Christ [actually selected us for Himself as His own] before the foundation of the world, so that we would be holy [that is, consecrated, set apart for Him, purpose-driven] and blameless in His sight,~Ephesians 1:3-4 (Amplified).  

“Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in Me. I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing. If a person does not dwell in Me, he is thrown out like a [broken-off] branch, and withers; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire, and they are burned.”~Jesus. ‭‭John‬ ‭15:4-6‬ ‭(Amplified).‬‬

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control,~Galatians 5:22-23 (NIV).

How do we manifest what God is like to the world? How do we walk in the Spirit, being led by the Spirit, and continually bear good fruit? How do we release what He’s deposited?

It Starts with Saving Faith

We are saved by faith in Jesus, by grace, as a gift of God through repentance (confessing our sins and changing our mind about sin). If you have not accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior, check out How to Know Jesus

It Continues on with Relationship…

Fruit bearing is a manifestation of connection and relationship. How do we cultivate relationship with God? We can only release what we carry. 

For each person it may look a bit different. I am not suggesting you follow a formula or feel bound. There’s so much holy freedom in Christ. These are simply some things I do. 

  • Worship God. Worship is more than singing songs. Worship is a posture of the heart that says, “God You are greater than all things. You are worthy. All that I am is in awe of all You! I give you thanks, praise, adoration, my entire life! It’s all Yours!!
  • Make time with God a priority. I have worship parties with God. It’s just us and sometimes there’s singing, dancing, laughing (lots of laughing), praising, or face down on the floor time. 
  • Study the word with God. God and I have study dates. Normally these are Sunday afternoons in the war room (prayer room). I study with His input. I learn the Bible with God. It’s our time. 
  • Talk to God daily. He loves to be with us. 
  • Listen to God and jot down what you believe He’s saying. I carry a prayer journal with me everywhere with documented prayers, words, impressions, etcetera…I have some that are over 10 years old. Wait 15 years old. I can go back and reference our time together and answered prayers, prophetic words fulfilled, and encouraging words He has spoken. 
  • Ask God for deeper revelations of His love, His Presence, and His care. He loves to answer this prayer.
  • Ask God what His agenda is for the day. Who does He want to bless? If we pay attention He will highlight someone or multiple people each day.
  • Obey God. Some have taught that obedience is legalism. It is not. Jesus perfectly obeyed the Father and I dare anyone to call Him legalistic. Obedience is better than sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22) and a manifestation of our love for God (John 14:15). We are a slave to whoever we obey (Romans 16:6). We are not saved by obedience. We are saved by faith. However to claim Christ and practice lawlessness is not something God celebrates or approves of. See Matthew 7:21-23. God hates what damages us. Sin is damaging.

What if you say, “My tree does not have abundant good fruit! Or I don’t have anything good to offer the world. I am barely making it.”

 
If I go out to an orange tree and it has no good fruit. I don’t curse the tree. I look at the root system. Only a tree planted in good soil, watered, receiving light from the sun will produce good fruit. Only a tree free of disease will produce good fruit. 

If I am not producing the good fruit of God’s likeness, it’s because I’ve disconnected from the Vine (God), forsaken intimacy (watering (Holy Spirit) and His Presence (Light)), forsaken fellowship (community), and chosen to live by my flesh instead of being led by His Spirit. If I’m still not producing good fruit, there are wounds/hurts (disease) in my soul that need healed. The spirit is saved, new at conversion. The soul is being sanctified (changed, cleansed, purified over time with God). 

God can and does heal the wounded soul. I will post more about that later. Our pride and rebellion can also block the flow of the Holy Spirit. It’s easy to confess those things to God and get the flow moving freely again. 

Releasing What You Carry…

Possession proceeds releasing. We can only give what we have first obtained from God. We receive by faith. 

  • We can only release by doing something. 
  • Faith requires activation. 

A couple years ago I was talking to God about wanting to see more sick people healed. He responded, “Go pray for more sick people.” I’ve seen God heal more sick people in the past 12 months than I have in  my entire walk with God. Mainly because when someone is ill, I jump to pray. 

Want more, release more! Find people to encourage, pray for, share the Gospel with, teach, mentor, disciple…pay it forward. 

God is a wise investor. If we use what’s given to bless others, He adds more. So, we stay connected and share what’s given. We love God for who He is, not to gain things from Him. If we spend time with Him, we will overflow with more than enough to share. 

Final Notes: 

There’s no fear in love. If I’m not producing good fruit in an area, I go to the Source (God). I abide in Him. I submit myself to Him and allow God to work in my soul that which is pleasing to Him. I deepen our connection. Good fruit is not produced by striving. It comes only through intimacy with God, abiding. 

Papa God, You are incredible and holy. I ask for all of us to be saturated with Your steadfast love, power, wisdom, and thoughts. Heal any wounds in our soul. Uproot unbelief, fear, pride, rebellion, insecurity. Plant us in good soil. Help us to stay under the waterfall of Your unfailing love. Keep our eyes on You! In Jesus mighty name. Amen. 

You are deeply loved and prayed for often. 

Love in Christ, 

Erin Lamb 

Orange tree photo courtesy of Pinterest. 

 
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Posted by on December 12, 2015 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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Adopted into a Royal Family (Manifesting Sonship Series Part II)

 
Photo credit: Pinterest 

Adopted children are chosen for love, desired, and given the same access to the Father as natural children. 

Beautiful friends, I’m so thankful you’re joining me on this exploration of sonship. Knowing who God is and who we are in Him is so crucial to living an abundant life and manifesting what He’s like to the world. 

I cannot love myself, love others, or fully love God if I do not first know His love for me. I also cannot imitate someone I do not know. It’s impossible to bear the fruit of His likeness without abiding (remaining in Him). See John 15:5. 

You and I were once unreconciled to God. Scripture tells us all but Jesus have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). God however had a redemptive plan all along, to save the world through His Son. Through relationship with Jesus we have the opportunity like Him to call God Abba Father. 
Let’s dig into some scripture that talks about our adoption. 

Ephesians 1: 3-14 (Amplified)

Blessed and worthy of praise be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms in Christ, just as [in His love] He chose us in Christ [actually selected us for Himself as His own] before the foundation of the world, so that we would be holy [that is, consecrated, set apart for Him, purpose-driven] and blameless in His sight. In love He predestined and lovingly planned for us to be adopted to Himself as [His own] children through Jesus Christ, in accordance with the kind intention and good pleasure of His will— to the praise of His glorious grace and favor, which He so freely bestowed on us in the Beloved [His Son, Jesus Christ]. In Him we have redemption [that is, our deliverance and salvation] through His blood, [which paid the penalty for our sin and resulted in] the forgiveness and complete pardon of our sin, in accordance with the riches of His grace which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and understanding [with practical insight] He made known to us the mystery of His will according to His good pleasure, which He purposed in Christ, with regard to the fulfillment of the times [that is, the end of history, the climax of the ages]—to bring all things together in Christ, [both] things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him also we have received an inheritance [a destiny—we were claimed by God as His own], having been predestined (chosen, appointed beforehand) according to the purpose of Him who works everything in agreement with the counsel and design of His will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ [who first put our confidence in Him as our Lord and Savior] would exist to the praise of His glory. In Him, you also, when you heard the word of truth, the good news of your salvation, and [as a result] believed in Him, were stamped with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit [the One promised by Christ] as owned and protected [by God]. The Spirit is the guarantee [the first installment, the pledge, a foretaste] of our inheritance until the redemption of God’s own [purchased] possession [His believers], to the praise of His glory.

I gave you lots of verses for a reason; we have a weighty inheritance. I encourage reading these verses again and again asking the Holy Spirit to root them deep into your heart and mind, soul and spirit. 

What can we take away from these verses. 

  • You and I are no mistake! We were on God’s mind before the foundation of the earth. Our earthly parents may have been confused but God wasn’t. 
  • God wanted and wants a personal and intimate relationship with us. We were chosen. Adopted children are wanted and chosen (hand selected). 
  • We have a spiritual inheritance in Christ. We are not orphans without an inheritance or future. This means we are not paupers, beggars, nor are we poor. Our Heavenly Father owns everything. He’s not poor.  
  • We have been given His name and His seal. In Christ, we are His. I was adopted. I took my Father’s name. Everything the natural children received because of my father’s name, I received. We are coheirs with Christ. Not beggars outside the gate. 
  • We become a Royal Priesthood! …you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a consecrated nation, a [special] people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies [the wonderful deeds and virtues and perfections] of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light,~1 Peter 2:9. 
  • We can boldly approach the throne of grace, our Heavenly Father (Hebrews 4:16). We have been given access in the Son (Jesus). 
  • We don’t have to beg God to do things. We are His children; He longs to do what’s right more than we do. Jesus told us to ask, believe, not beg (Matthew 7:7-11). He withholds nothing good (Psalm 84:11). Our idea of good doesn’t always match His, His timing, or His understanding yet He’s always working for good. 
  • We are unconditionally loved. God chose us in love before we ever said yes to Him. Therefore His love isn’t based on our performance. He loves us because He loves us. 
  • He chose us individually, therefore His love is not a cookie cutter love. 
  • We are not without family, purpose, or a divine destiny. When your Daddy is God you can dream big and bigger! He’s unlimited. Each person has a divine destiny and purpose. Your life matters. 
  • God likes you! He likes me! No one chooses something they don’t like or value. The value of something is determined by how much someone will pay for it. The Father gave His Son. Jesus gave His life. 

I will end by saying God longs to be with us. He’s not a cruel dictator or tyrant. He longs to be with us to love us. He actually enjoys our company. I struggled with this concept until my niece came along. I love her with my life and she makes messes, has mini tantrums, destroys flowers, and can’t communicate fully yet. I love being with her and doing what she likes to do. 

One day I asked God, “Why do You like being with me? I haven’t said anything remotely intelligent all day and even if I tried, I can’t match You.

He responded, “I love you. I love you more than you love Naomi. You simply enjoy being with her. I enjoy being with you. You’re my daughter and if you do nothing I’m right here loving you.

May you and I believe, accept, and bask in our identity as God’s child. If you’re not in Christ, have not repented and asked Him to be Lord over your life, He’s longing for you. Check out How to Know Jesus.

Papa God thank You for choosing us. I ask every lie about identity would be uprooted and replaced with Your truth. May we know the height, depth, width, & vast expanse of Your amazing love. Show us what it means to be Royal, and model Kingdom Royalty like Jesus-a humble servant. In Jesus mighty name, amen. 

Love,

Erin Lamb

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2015 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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The Spiritual House (Intro)

  
Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain,~Psalm 127:1. 

I love Psalm 127:1. God is central in all things; when He’s not placed at the center it leads to all kinds of terrible things.

If you look around the world, you’ll notice that the majority of problems with humanity are rooted in mankind (humans) being central (exalting their desires above God) and God is often an afterthought. 

Adam and Eve were the first humans to choose doing their will above God’s and it brought sin, shame, death, sickness, disease, separation from God, broken identities, and fractured hearts into humanity. You can read about it here. Genesis 3 (The Fall). One act of choosing to live independent of God’s will led to the corruption of humanity. Thank goodness for Jesus who came to redeem humanity! He came to restore. 

Our world is seeking independence from God and His ways…

There are current campaigns that say, “Everything is permissible. I’m okay, you’re okay.”  There’s also a lack of reverence for God and His ways. 

How do followers of Jesus respond? 

How do we respond rightly to the condition of the world today? How do we deal with the pressing questions of “Is this okay? Did God make me this way? Do I have to stay this way?” What is santification? Why does God provide guidelines for living? Why does He say yes to some things and no to others? Why does choosing our own way lead to eventual destruction? How do we love people without compromising the truth and holiness of God? 

It starts with our own understanding of God and who we are in Him. 

Knowing God and our identity is where it starts. God loves us! Adam and Eve were already like God (created in His image). They didn’t need to eat the fruit. If they had believed 1. God is good and withholds nothing good from us. 2. God’s given us everything we need. 3. We can trust God. 4. God loves us and wants the best for us…then maybe they would’ve made a different choice. 

We are the house God built.  

God handcrafted Adam and Eve. We were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). We are a spiritual house. Yes, you and I are spirits inhabiting bodies. 1 Corinthians 6:18-20 tells us that those in Christ are blood bought children of God. God breathed life into man. Our lives are no longer our own. We are called temples of the Holy Spirit. 

Before we accept Jesus the Bible tells us we are dead in trespasses and sins (Colossians 2:13, Ephesians 2:1-2). Without relationship with God, there’s no Holy Spirit and the human spirit has not been forgiven, cleansed, renewed, awakened, or made new. After Christ, we are transformed and being transformed into the image of the Son. God intended for us to reflect Him. 

So what happens when our house is filled with what’s not of God or society says, “You were born this way you must stay this way?” My response, “There is power in the name of Jesus to break every chain.” 

Our spiritual house is meant to be filled with love, light, joy, hope, faith, truth, purity, goodness, kindness, and the character of Jesus. I wish this process was instant. Some of it is and some of it takes time. We are transformed and being transformed. 

I know many people, myself included, who have had their spiritual house cleansed and rebuilt by God. 

Names changed to protect people… 

There’s John who was addicted to pornography. This brought great pain to his wife and family. Though he did these things in secret, it affected his ability to truly represent Jesus. His heart was divided. God broke the addiction and lust off his life. God restored his marriage. Though He was a born again believer, he had opened a door in his life for demonic oppression, lust, addiction, and self gratification. 

There’s Mary who spent a good portion of her life living as a man. She dated women, lived with women, and had no desire to be who God created her to be. Mary had a radical encounter with Jesus. Mary now lives as a woman and is a radical worshipper. She said coming to know Jesus she regretted her time living as a man. It brought confusion, loneliness, and pain in her life. 

There’s Mark who had told his parents he sold his soul to satan and was threatening to kill others. He was a rageaholic, and his family feared him. Mark had a radical encounter with Holy Spirit and he’s now an evangelist. He’s kind, and last I know representing Jesus well. 

There’s Todd who was a drug addict and dated men. He too had a radical encounter with God and was delivered of drug addiction and no longer dates men. 

There are more stories that I will share throughout this series, including some of my own.

I will say God comes into a house to inhabit it, not leave it the same. At conversion the old man is crucified with Christ. The new man has come. The Holy Spirit then works within to reveal the love, righteousness, holiness, and goodness of God. We come to God as we are. He loves us purely as we are. He loves us so much He works within so we are transformed into original design, pre-fall. 

I hope you stay tuned for this series! I hope it gives you hope that God loves you and there are no hopeless cases

When God is invited into every area of our lives and we yield to His leading there are so many good things that take place…May we receive His great love, believe Him, believe who we are in Him, pray to Him (He responds to “God help”-I pray this prayer), and yield to His leading. 

You are deeply loved and prayed for. 

Love in Christ, 
Erin 

 
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Posted by on July 19, 2015 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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Believe, Know, Listen, & Follow-Intimacy with God (Part II)

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Photo credit: Son of God movie

John 10:25-30.

Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you. My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.”

I recommend reading all of John 10. In this passage Jesus refers to Himself as the good Shepherd. Shepherds were overseers of flocks. Sheep are not the brightest animals. They will fall into ditches, see another sheep in a ditch and fall in…they can wonder off and be destroyed because they are not wise. Shepherds protected their sheep. They were invested in keeping them safe. They’d lay at the gate to prevent them from escaping. They spent time with the sheep. They rescued wayward sheep.

Jesus is the good Shepherd. We are like the sheep. He’s responsible to care for us, reveal who He is to us, and we are to know and follow Him. We are not an obligation to God. We are His dearly loved children.

In the verses above Jesus is responding to the questions of the Pharisees about who He is. Is He the Christ? I love His responses. He stated, “You do not believe, therefore you are not my sheep. My sheep know and follow me.

Intimacy with God starts with faith. It starts with belief.

Do you believe God is who He says He is and will do what He says He will do?
It is not enough to simply believe there is a God or Jesus is the Son of God. Even the demons believe and tremble. (James 2:19), yet they are not saved. There’s no salvation for them. There is for humanity.

If you’re reading this and you’ve never confessed your sins before God, repented (made a decision to turn from sinning and turn to God), asked God to cleanse you of your sins, placed your faith in Jesus Christ as the appropriation for your sins, and asked Him to be your Lord and Savior, I invite you do so. There’s no salvation apart from Him. There’s no entrance to heaven without going through the Son. We can’t do enough good works to earn holiness or righteousness. Jesus did it for us. We by faith, receive what He’s done and accept His righteousness as our own.

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me,” John 14:6.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith,~Romans 3:23-25a.

If you invited God into your life, I would love to hear from you and provide more information to you.

The second step in intimacy with God is being with Him.

Sheep spent their time with the shepherd. They learned his voice, his smell, his mannerisms. It’s impossible to have intimacy (knowing) with someone and you never spend any time. If Sunday morning is the only time you spend with God, well your level of intimacy is not going to be high.

I am not stating you attend worship services all week, lock yourself in a room to pray and read the Bible all day. I am saying we can commune with God every day, as much as we’d like. One of my morning activities is to start the day with worship and thanksgiving. “Good morning God! I love you. Thank you for who you are and all you’ve done. I invite you to be a part of my day. What do you want to do? Who do you want to bless?” And there are days where I’m just listening. What is God doing? What is He saying? It’s not a ritual, it’s relationship.

Intimacy with God involves listening and knowing His voice.

The Bible says God speaks. There are some who teach He doesn’t and that does not align with scripture. God speaks to His children. If you had children and wrote an instruction manual for them, would you then say, “I refuse to speak to you. Go read the book I gave you.” That would seem insane. Yet some teach God only speaks to us through the Bible. God spoke to people in the Bible through dreams, visions, directly, through prophets, even through a donkey. Before you get too excited, let’s lay down some ground rules.

1. When God speaks He will not tell you to sin or violate His already written word.

I had someone tell me once the Holy Spirit told her not to read the Bible ever and only to listen to the voice she was hearing. That’s wrong and violates scripture.

I heard someone say God told them to leave their spouse for someone else. That’s wrong. It violates many scriptures.

Our culture says do whatever feels good for you and if it’s “love” or feels good, God must approve of it. That’s wrong. If there’s no place in scripture where God is condoning a behavior, you can’t condone it either and claim it’s God. There are some verses that seem to contradict each other which is why God gave His Holy Spirit to teach us.

We can’t toss out the Bible and rely on feelings, human wisdom, angelic visitations, or voices we believe are God.

2. All prophecy (speaking God’s word) is to be tested. Meaning the following:

Does it align with God’s word? Example, there are many false prophecies about when the world will end. Well, the Bible states the following:

“No one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows,”~Matthew 24:36.

Does the prophecy fit the character of God?

I’ve had destructive words spoken over me. There was no life in them. God does give warnings. He also provides redemption. Those who repent can find hope and life in Him. Jesus came to save, not destroy. If people are destroyed, it will be because they refused the gift He offered and refused repentance.

Finally intimacy with God involves following Him.

We are called to obey God. It’s not a popular teaching, yet Jesus taught it often. Christianity is not simply praying a prayer, it’s following a person. That person is Jesus. We cannot claim to love God and live a life where we refuse to do what He says. He gives us grace and His Spirit to enable us to do His will. If we cease to obey, we will eventually cease to hear from Him. If He continues to speak, we are held accountable for what we know. So if you feel super disconnected from God, one thing to ask is , “Has He told me to do something I have not done?”

I will continue this series because I truly believe we perish for lack of knowledge of who God is. We are called to know Him, to be loved by Him, to love Him, and enjoy Him. God is not boring, cold, stern, a kill joy, or mean spirited. He is good, holy, exciting, adventurous, overflowing with love and joy. He’s beyond amazing. He’s generous, faithful, merciful, and forgiving. The evil one doesn’t want the world to know who God is and how good He is. Once you know Him, it’s almost impossible to resist Him.

Will you join me on this relentless pursuit of God’s heart? I hope so.

You’re continually in my thoughts, prayers, and you are deeply loved (John 3:16).

Love,

Erin

 
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Posted by on November 15, 2014 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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Paid in Full (Jesus Saves)

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You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation,~Romans 5:6-11.

I read a quote that has been imbedded in my memory. It says, “Sin has a high price tag. Either we will pay for our sins or we accept Jesus and receive His appropriation for our sins.” The Bible is very clear that all have sinned (except Jesus) and have fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). We are powerless to save ourselves, hence the need for a Savior.

What is sin? It’s not just murder, adultery, refusing to love, selfishness, jealousy, bigotry, racism, abuse, lying, dishonoring people, or hatred. Sin is anything not birthed from faith (Romans 14:23).

As humans we are not born loving God nor are we filled with faith. We are born selfish, carnal, and thanks to Adam/Eve with a sin nature in tact. Our passions are not Godly. God knew we’d mess up and made the appropriation for our mess ups. Jesus went to the cross for sinful, wicked, and messed up people; you and me!

People want to envision God slashing people and delighting in throwing them into hell with a grin on His face. God hates sin. God is opposed to sin. He’s holy, there’s no sin in Him. Sin cannot dwell in Him. He’s also a God of justice. Love without justice is not love at all. Those who refuse His solution for sin will end up eternally separated from Him. This truth should lead us to pray people are reconciled to God and free of sin, not to look down our noses or condemn others. If He had not pursued us, we’d all be lost.

So, we can be discouraged by our depravity or we can be encouraged by the love of God. The love that stepped into sinful humanity and laid down His life in a brutal death so we could be free.

Yes, sin is deserving of death. Sin is toxic. Sin is why Jesus went to the cross-to pay for our sins. But the story doesn’t end with our sin. In comes Jesus! He says, “Come follow Me. If you confess your sins, I am faithful to forgive your sins. I make all things new! I paid the highest price for you. I make all things new.”

Dear friends, let’s never forget what God did for us. Let’s not try to convince the world of their sin without introducing them to a Savior. May we recognize our own depravity and seek God for the purification of our heart and motives. Jesus paid the penalty for all sin. He paid it in full! We are saved because of what He did. It is finished.

God bless you! May you share the Gospel with love in your hearts. Our God is mighty to save.

Love in Christ,

Erin

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Posted by on March 5, 2014 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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The Misrepresentation of God

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Photo Credit: Pinterest

You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us,~Romans 5:6-8.

There are so many lies floating around about God. There are numerous people claiming to represent Him that are doing more harm than good. Nothing saddens me more than the misrepresentation of God. He is glorious. He is good. While we were at our worst state, Jesus died for us.

God is love. There are so many Bible verses that affirm this truth, yet love is often misrepresented.

Love does not go along with what’s wrong. Some believe that because God is love, we should never correct others or point to truth. If you study the ministry of Jesus, He rebuked people…especially the self righteous.

For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives,~Hebrews 12:6.

God’s discipline is aimed at leading us to repentance (turning away from doing what’s wrong). Humans sometimes discipline to exercise control, to humiliate, or seek revenge. God longs to restore.

God loves all people! Heaven will be an ethnically diverse place.

After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands,~Revelation 7:9.

It’s sad that racism, sexism, bigotry, prejudice, and feelings of superiority have made their way into some Christian circles. God does not look at people the way we do. He looks at the heart.

There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus,~Galatians 3:28.

In God’s Kingdom, there are no inferior people groups nor is there an inferior gender. Division is a work of the evil one. The Holy Spirit works to bring about peace and unity. He does not change the truth to promote unity; He does place value and honor on people since they are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27).

It amazes me that Jews and Africans have been the most persecuted and hated groups in history, yet the Bible is set on the Continent of Africa and in the Middle East. God does not hate dark skinned people or people from those regions. They were and are an integral part of His story. Jesus was born into a Jewish lineage. Many of the Kings, Queens, and influential people we read about in the Bible were African and others what we’d call today Middle Eastern.

God also does not devalue women. If you study the interactions Jesus had with women, He loved, honored, respected, and treated them well.

Sin (especially pride) brought about the mistreatment of people. It’s not God’s heart.

God wants to save people, not send them to hell.

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance,~2 Peter 3:9.

God sent His Son to save the world. So whosoever believes in Him could have everlasting life. Our role is to share the Gospel (which means Good News), not condemn people to hell. We leave the final judgement in God’s hands.

God didn’t tell us to force people into conversion or be the sin police for the world. He did tell us to hold other Christians accountable.

Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself,~Galatians 6:1.

This does not mean we are not to fight against social injustice. It does mean we not called to be the Holy Spirit for the world. God calls us to be salt and light. Light is a blessing (our role). Light shines (our role). Light guides (our role). Light illuminates truth (our role). God convicts the world of sin (Holy Spirit’s role). God empowers people to say no to sin (God’s role). When we take on His role, we end up doing more harm than good. We point people to God. We allow Him to work through us. We do not assume His role in their lives.

God hates sin not just because He’s holy, but because sin destroys who He loves.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord,~Romans 6:23.

God doesn’t seek to humiliate or shame people.

Jesus dealt with all types of sinners. He did not seek to humiliate them. The Religious people of his day were looking for people to stone, humiliate, or condemn.

When they brought Jesus the woman caught in adultery here was His response.

When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”~John 8:7.

After her accusers were gone, Jesus told her to go and leave her life of sin. Love protects. Jesus protected her and told her to stop sinning. That’s real love.

God is not after your money; He’s after your heart!

There are people exploiting the gifts of God and the people of God for profit. God asks us to give to be a blessing to the poor and those around us. The gifts were never intended to exploit people. God cares deeply about the poor. He asks us to give to love on those who have not. When our heart is aligned with His, we care deeply for the poor and we want to give. He does not try to force us to give.

He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection,~Luke 14:12-14.

Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed,~Proverbs 19:17.

To sum it up…God loves people. He’s Sovereign. He’s holy. He’s good. He longs to help us in our weakness. He’s forgiving. The greatest detriment to our souls is failing to receive His Son. No one can come to the Father without the Son. Jesus is the key to eternal life. Even for those who reject Him, God still has love for them.

May we know Him for who He really is and represent Him well! God=Love!!! For more info on what He’s like, check out http://morena242.wordpress.com.

Love in Christ,

Erin

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2014 in From the Author, God's Heart

 

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Jesus!

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Photo credit: Pinterest

The past few posts have been about what can cause us to run from Jesus. Today I wanted to write about Jesus!

Some love Him, some hate Him. Some believe in Him, some do not. Some love His name, some are offended by His name. He’s been represented and misrepresented since He came into the world. He is the beautiful, radiant, glorious, Son of God. Let’s read what the Old Testament had to say about Jesus in Isaiah 53…

Isaiah 53

Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?

He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

He was rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.

By oppression and judgment he was taken away. Yet who of his generation protested? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was punished.

He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.

After he has suffered, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities.

Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors.

For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Why did Jesus come? Why did Love leave paradise to enter into humanity?

He came to save you and me. He offered His life as a perfect sacrifice so every person who chooses to believe in Him and follow Him would have everlasting life. He came to bear our burdens. He came to pay for our sins. He came so we would not be alone or defeated in this sinful world. He came to give hope! He came to set captives free, heal the broken hearted, restore sight to the blind, cleanse humanity, and provide an inheritance we could call our own. He came to give us back the authority Adam surrendered to the devil.

Jesus the Victor!

Though He’s often painted or depicted on a cross, Jesus didn’t remain on the cross! He got up with all power in His hands. He was raised up above all powers, seated at the right hand of the Father, and raises us up to sit in heavenly places with Him.

Sweet friends, no matter what life throws at you, Jesus is still victorious. You have an Advocate, a Friend, a Savior, a sure Hope, a Victorious Warrior, a Healer, and Deliverer. He’s not dead! Jesus is very much alive. He loves you. Whatever your need today, cry out to Jesus!

Praying for you and your loved ones. You are deeply loved (John 3:16)!

Erin

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Posted by on November 23, 2013 in Devotions, From the Author, God's Heart

 

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