Thursday, July 30, 2009
I am about to pack this here computer up in a box and move it on Saturday so I came to take a peek at it before I packed it. Thank you so much ladies, I love all of you.
I think this is what I am going to do. I have been praying about the blog. It was God instructed so you gals are right, I need to do what I feel led to do. So, I am going to take the entire month of August off from blogging but not from checking all of yours, ha ha. I will always hang out with you way cool people.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Amber look out!!!
Aren't they sweet? A great group of girls......
Monday, July 20, 2009
God gave me a desire but I had no clear vision of how to do it. Thankfully I didn't receive the desire and then go out and do something about it. In reading Lysa Ter Keurst's book "What Happens When Women Say Yes To God" and also in having her speak to me in an online conference about fulfilling God's will for your life I learned that when God gives you a clear direction he will open doors for you. She said often when God speaks something into your life he will have other godly people around you say things about that desire that are a confirmation of what he has placed into you. Doors will open and then you can step into His will. The period between the desire being given/vision shown and the time of the occurrence is supposed to be our time of preparation. Not the time of complaining to God why it is taking so long for what he spoke to happen. Preparation time.
So I've waited and been preparing. Waiting for a door to open. Waiting for confirmation. I got it on Saturday morning and then again on Saturday afternoon. I am so excited.
God placed a desire in my heart to lead a Bible Study group. That was in and about November/December. God has been teaching me and leading me in so much since November that I have blogged so many times about how He is making my head spin!! As soon as I am taking in something and learning to apply what I have learned boom, he's leading me onto more. It's like He was just pouring the word and teachings into me. It was my prep time.
Well, the previous Sunday the church bulletin stated that the men's breakfast would be this past Saturday (held once a month). It also stated at the breakfast they would be discussing the second retreat the men would be going away on. They went on one two months ago and have planned another one in Blue Ridge August 7-9. So I say to Mike, you know, we need a women's ministry here. I'd like to plan something for the women or maybe start a Bible study. I wasn't really thinking about it, I just said it.
Mike goes to the men's breakfast and brings up to all the leaders what I have said to him. They said they thought it was a great idea and they gave permission for me to plan a retreat/conference for the women. The Bible Study was brought up and they all loved the idea. Mike comes home and tells me this and I am overjoyed!! Finally a place to serve. Then we go look at the house I showed y'all Sunday.
Right after we looked at the house Mike had to go over to the pastor's home and help fix the brakes of a friend whose truck broke down at pastor's home. So the three of them are out there with Mike while he is fixing the car and they had a little meeting and I was given permission to go ahead with the Bible Study! Pastor said I can have bible study at the church if I want to every other Thursday evening. The men meet every other Thursday to pray and then go out and minister to people on the most wanted list (a list for members to list unsaved family/friends). So when Mike comes back and tells me it is official, I am overjoyed!!
An opened door.
I couldn't believe pastor didn't want to talk to me first. Mike said, he knows you and he knows you will do the right thing. Just stay true to the word. He says pastor says the women need someone to plan these things and if I have the desire I need to do it.
Sunday I talked to the Pastor at Church and he was excited about it. I asked him if he wanted to talk about it at all and he said no. He said to let me know what I had planned when I was done so he would know what was going on. He said, just do it with a big smile. Bible study, conference/retreat and all. Anything I want to plan for the women I can do as long as I just let him know. WOW!!!!!!!
Could this be any more exciting?
I am excited and scared. Which is probably quite normal from what I read and hear. But I am so thrilled!! I can't wait to get started. I can't wait to dig deeper and see what His will is in all of this. This is not about me, it's about what He can do through me. It's about him, His plans and I am just so awestruck that I can be such an instrumental part of His plan for the women of our Church and local area. Joy, joy, joy.
Each night I begin with gentle nudges with my feet which she may or may not respond to. Stupid cat. Plan B is my taking a huge body pillow and tap her with it lightly, she doesn't like it. Mike always says, "Just kick the cat!". But, being an animal lover I just can't kick the cat. Stupid cat. So each night Chloe and I engage in a battle for the bed. Last night Chloe was particularly naughty. I awoke to the cat sleeping on my feet. I pulled my feet out from under the cat and gently nudged her through the covers. She would not move. I pulled out my big pillow and plopped it on her. Nothing. I yelled at the cat, nothing. I pushed her this time with my feet and she never moved a muscle. Dang. I decided to sleep diagonally instead, if I engaged with the cat any longer I knew I would not be able to go back to sleep. A bit later I woke up again with the cat on top of my feet. So I got really aggravated and said to myself, "that's it!!". I decided to once again give her a light nudge before I pushed her hard off the bed. So I pull my foot out from the covers and push lightly.
I knew immediately something wasn't right. There was no fur. I sat straight up in the bed horrified......
there he was. Sleeping across the bed at my feet. No covers, just Braxton in his diaper at the foot of my bed. ACK!!!!
Oh my goodness, I almost shoved my sweet two year old off the bed. That would have been guilt with a capital G!!
Some cute Braxton speak:
Me trying to each Braxton another way to lift his butt up so I can change him.
Me: "Braxton, keep your feet down on the bed and lift your butt up in the air."
I show him what to do and then he puts his legs down while I get the diaper. When I am ready I say "Okay Braxton, butt up."
Braxton: "I can't like it 'nother butt up."
And he lifts his legs way up into the air by his head.
Me: Laughing my tail off.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Sometimes we are slayed. Period. Such beauty has been found in this process my family and I have had to walk through. I have experienced things and learned much in this last year. I am so grateful!! How can I not be grateful to God for making us more like Him? I can be confused sometimes but still grateful. I read something in Wendy Blights book Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner that really struck me. We all know about what God's word says about refining. We know He refines us to break off the impurities. Wendy wrote in her book something about the refining process that I did not know about. She wrote that when the person was refining the gold that they knew they could stop the refining process when they could look into the gold and see a reflection of themselves. Oh my, God is looking to see us and see a reflection of Himself looking back. That was a good word.
I have been giving myself a hard time for being a hard nut to crack. Truly I have been. I found encouragement that Wendy was a tough nut to crack as it was 17 years for her to truly get into "that place" of peace and trust. I've only been in the trust battle for 2 years. I've learned it's okay to go at our own pace with God. We are all unique and so shall be our walks with Him. It's okay to be a tough nut to crack as long as I crack, right? This weekend especially God has shed off some more of my layers. Cleaned out some dusty corners of my heart. It felt so good.
I was reading Wendy's book "Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner" Saturday at my 17 year old's karate testing. She is a red belt by the way now!! (Her dad pays for karate so she was able to go and test) When Lexi was not on the floor I was reading and man, that book was so powerful I sometimes had to put the book down in my lap and just breathe deep breaths. It literally took my breath away. Sometimes I cried quietly in a corner. Thankfully everyone was focused on their kids and I sat in the back row in the corner for privacy. Sometimes I cried for Wendy and sometimes I cried and the pure revelation of God's truth in what she wrote. Sometimes I felt like she was speaking right to me. It felt like she knew me and had written a note just for me. She made me feel that it was okay to be me. I have lived in self condemnation that I can't be like some of my Christian friends and Christian blog friends who have that supreme peace and happiness. The Christian blogs who never speak of anything negative happening to them, I yearn for that again. I had something horrible happen to me and my faith and trust were not what I thought they were. I lost control of my mind and let it waiver. I did not stand firm. It is a shame that I let myself live with. I think God broke that off me these past few days. I feel really good.
As a sinner I have to know I will fail sometimes. God has shown me that when I do I have two choices. I can live in shame and not forgive myself or let him truly forgive me which keeps me from truly living in his rest. I can beat myself up and let myself think that I can never get it right OR I can say to the Lord that I have messed up and I repent. I can forgive myself and ask Him for forgiveness. Then I forget it and move on. If I yell at my kids I don't have to live in condemnation the entire day. I can say to them and God that I am sorry, mean it and we move on with a clear conscience. The same goes for when I stumble with my "trust walk". If I mess up, repent in prayer and to any persons if need be and then once I do I can stand in love and without blame in Christ Jesus as his word says I can. The day is not ruined. I can forget it and move on.
I did a study in my Bible's Concordance about trust. It was very good for me to do. I love to do Concordance studies and so does Wendy as she wrote about doing it many times. One simple scripture has been on my lips many times a day, "I will trust in You Lord, with all my heart". I will be firmly rooted, established in my faith. I prayed to the Lord about how I wanted to trust him so fully with my life and asked him to help me overcome my disbelief concerning his power and plans over my life. He took me straight to Psalms 9, I asked Him to take me to the word that He had for me and that is where my fingers got caught up in the pages as I strummed my Bible. Psalms 9 is about God hearing our cries for help and trusting in Him. Verse 10 says Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you. It speaks of praising him. The study part of the Bible explains that inward attitude becomes outward expression. Oh my, I was so glad he took me there. And I felt so special that God was listening to me and took care to take me to such a special Psalm. Another part of the study section of my Bible explaining this Psalm says "But God is to be praised, for he sees and remembers all the good we do, and it is up to him to decide the timing and the appropriateness of our rewards. If we do not trust him to vindicate us, then we will be susceptible to hatred and self-pity. If we do trust him, we can experience God's peace and be free from the worry of how others perceive us and treat us.". Amen to that. Part of my Concordance study led me to scriptures that show that a lack of trust in God can lead to grumbling (Israelites in the wilderness). Oh my can you say conviction? Well, I am honest about it at least. That's a good part of the battle. The other 2 parts are learning how to overcome it and then actually being able to put it into life application. I am in the last part of this battle, yes and Amen to that.
Another thing.... the scripture in the Bible that talks about God's word going out and not returning void keeps coming up over and over and over. I knew this was something God had to speak to me. I have also felt the need to begin memorizing scripture and speak them out loud. My Sunday school teacher brought up that scripture also and she said also out of the mouth the heart speaks. She said God wants to use you but if you aren't memorizing scripture so you can send God's word back to him you are cheating yourself. Also, she said that if you aren't memorizing scripture then you have nothing of God's word in you for him to pull up out of you so He can use you to witness to others. She said we need to put God's word into our hearts and he will pull it out of us and we shall speak it and it will not return void. Ah, yes. Long sigh when she said that, I get it now Lord. Thank you, I truly am a tough nut to crack, but at least my shell is cracking, lol.
"I will trust in you Lord, with all my heart." Amen.
Friday, July 10, 2009
As you know I have been reading a book about honoring God with our money and our faith. It also happens to teach about how God blesses you back but it's not a get rich quick book or a get rich book at all. I think perhaps yesterday was a test on what we have been learning. I honestly don't know if I passed or failed. If it were to be graded perhaps it was a C or C-.
Yesterday was beyond tough and I just kept going back to a post from Wendy Blight's blog a couple of days ago where she was talking about faith and she said Beth Moore had said that God just wants us to believe and know He is able. I just kept saying that yesterday "God, I believe you are able.". Were any of my prayers answered yesterday? No. To be honest. But I kept saying it anyway. I do believe He is able. Yesterday on the way home and I sat in the truck with Mike (barefoot because my only pair of flip flops broke after we left being lost on foot in Atlanta and it's stupid hills which put too much strain on my hand me down shoes) and I said, "Mike, I can see God around us, I can see how He has moved in our family and all of our lives. But I don't see him moving in this one area at all and we are desperate for help. Do you think God is going to help us with this?". Mike paused for a moment and he said "I don't know.". Me neither I said. And with that I just went numb.
Yesterday was another crushing blow with finances. We didn't get paid last week and we were expecting a huge check this week. Um, they said they can't pay us. That's two weeks with nothing and we were promised weekly draws. It was the only reason Mike agreed to do the two jobs. We had to tell our 2 guys we can't pay them their payroll checks too. My was that fun. How would you like to walk into work and have your boss say he can't pay you for another week. Sigh. I am beyond myself. We had to borrow my teenager's $100 she just got paid for gas money for Mike. It's all we have until next Friday. $100 and if he uses more than that in gas we are porked. He drives about an hour and a half to and from work at the moment. I don't know if we are going to make it. I have enough gas to get to the grocery store and back and then my van and I will be sitting at home for a week. No gas. Today is my son's 12th birthday and we had to tell him we could not buy him a present. He took it well. The truck broke down on us 3 times yesterday and one of the times we were blocking everyone and their mother in Marietta. Then we had court. Our ultimate humiliation as this is how low we've come.
2 years ago we lived well within our means, had tons of equity in our home, savings and hubby made a great living. Hah!! Yesterday we were in bankruptcy court and the trustee is making us come back next month and won't finish off our case. Why? She doesn't feel we can afford to stay in our home and we have to prove we can or she is making us forfeit it. I didn't know they could do that. Okay, my mom is a disabled heart/stroke patient living downstairs and we all help take care of her. The only reason we are even still in this house is because of my parents. It will be a financial killer for them to move out on their own with mom's medical bills. My dad has put so much money into the house and paid to finish the basement into an apartment for them. I feel so guilty, how can I do that to them? She is right, I can't afford to live here. But how can I do that to my parents? We owe them. It's pretty bad when the judgey lady tells you that you need to go. We asked my dad about them being able to leave yesterday and he said they'd leave if they had to but didn't want to. I'm their only kid and they have given me the world and I am about to have to toss them out into the street. Sigh. It was even more fun when a business associate of my hubby's was in court too. Are you freaking kidding me? He was there trying to get a trustee to make a person filing pay him, he wasn't filing. Total humiliation as the man stayed in the room during our hearing. I thought out of respect for their friendship and working relationship he should have left the room during our hearing and left Mike his dignity. We owe him $700 in the business and I will make sure he gets paid last. The very last for that. Jerk.
So if yesterday was a test I don't know if I passed. God really confuses me a lot of times. Mike gave a man in our church $260 dollars last week because he was crying and he was about to be evicted. He was lacking the $260 and needed it by the following morning. We don't have a lick to spare but he gave it to him because also we were supposed to get paid today. Um, not happening. Plus, there was this thing God had me do that I haven't blogged about but it involved a $50 gift card given to me that God kept speaking to me for a week that I had to give to the home that I blogged about with the pallet of wood out front asking people for help to get a job. Needless to say I wanted to make sure it was God because I could really use a $50 gift card you know? But they have it now as of Monday. So we gave money we didn't have last week because well, that's what we were led to do. I was like God, why did you have us do that knowing that by Thursday after paying parking and a court cost I would have zero dollars to my name, no birthday present for kid and have to borrow money from teenager for gas? Why? I don't get it? I'm still glad we did it. Those people are bad off like we are and I'm glad we obeyed. I just thought maybe God would honor that and find a way for a check to appear or something. Dang. Then my shoes broke.
I don't want anything from anyone though. I hate to receive, I'm more comfortable being a giver. It's very difficult for me to accept anything but I have been learning to do that lately. Still don't like it. It just amazes me how we can go from being such responsible people living in our means with no credit card debt or anything to this. What the heck? This is a look into the effects of the economy. Perfectly good and responsible families who paid their way who are now struggling just to keep the lights on and eat. Bankrupt and on food stamps. I was so happy when the food stamp card came last week. I yelled out to Mike, "Hey Mike, look!! We're finally pathetic enough to get food stamps, hurray!! We can eat now at least!!" That was a great day. I went shopping and we had a full supply. YES!!! I don't feel guilty about it anymore.
I have no idea why I humiliate myself like this and blog about it except it's cheap therapy. If I don't get it out I will fall apart. I had fun at a blog the other day where a lady who is just so supremely wonderful was blogging about a struggle that is really kinda stupid in the big scheme of things. It was so trivial that I had to laugh about it and to her it was the world. I said with a smile, thank you Lord that you have blessed this woman so much that this small thing is her big struggle. I was so happy for her. Someday I will be that woman again who blogs about something small and dumb and it is my biggest worry. Amen.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
The author cracks me up when after the part I wrote about yesterday about us being told we can receive the blessings of Abraham through Jesus. He says that he believed the Word because the Bible said so and when he first got ahold of this truth he was not only scraping the bottom of the barrel, he was under the barrel!! But he believed and he kept preaching it and eventually he got out from under the barrel where he could at least start on the bottom for awhile and he has been on top ever since. Praise God!
I really liked this next part.
"Don't think that it is just going to happen overnight, because it isn't. I ran up and down the hills and hollows of east Texas preaching prosperity when I didn't have a dime in my pocket. I had a car that was worn out with four bald tires and no spare. I looked like everything in the world except prosperous. But I just kept preaching prosperity because I knew it was so. I mean, if the Bible said it, it's so whether I've got it or not!" Okay, that's great, how many of us say well that was then or that doesn't work anymore or we read the word but because of whatever reasons we dismiss certain passages in the Bible. Speaking in tongues is one that comes to mind right away. Now, I have never spoken in tongues but I have seen it many times. Many denominations don't believe in it and would think you are a freak if you were to be in their churches and do such a thing. Why is that? We want to prance around Peter's and Paul's teachings like it was the very word of God (and it is isn't it? right? Yes, it is.) but we in a huge percentage completely dismiss speaking in tongues. Why do we feel we can just dismiss parts in the Bible we don't think are permissible anymore? I'm just one of those people who think you need to believe what the Bible says or you don't. This preacher had the right idea. The Bible said it and he believed it. Period.
This next part is too true.....
"But you see, God doesn't always settle up every Saturday night. For example, on the negative side, a lot of people think they're getting by with wrongdoing, because God doesn't always settle up every Saturday night.
And God doesn't always settle up the first of every month either. And He doesn't even always settle up the first of every year: But sooner or later, payday is coming. And boy, you'd sure like to be around when payday comes if you've sown the right seed!
Now if you're sowing the wrong seed, you don't want to be around when payday comes. When you can see that you have sown the wrong seed, you'd better repent of it quickly and get it all under the blood. Then God will forgive you and forget it, and you can pick up and go on.
As I said, some people argue, "That prosperity business is all Old Testament though." But we've ample Scripture that proves that the blessing of Abraham-including prosperity- is ours, too, under the New Testament.
In the Old Testament, according to Deuteronomy, poverty was to come upon God's people if they disobeyed Him. It was the curse that was to come upon them because they'd failed to do all of God's commandments and His statues."
The thing that spoke to me in that part of the book is that it's true, God doesn't always settle up at the end of the week. How many times in Scripture do we see God pronounce judgement of Israel and then He waits 70 years to do it. Or he waits 200 years to do it. Judgement of the end of the world has already been pronounced and how long has He waited for that? We are told that the wicked eventually come to their demise. When do they come to their demise? Eventually, that's when. Whether it is in this world or the next, it is all in God's time. The same should apply for the blessings too. God waited how long before He made a way for David to be King even though He already had David anointed. David had to wait quite awhile for his blessing. But he knew it was coming because of God's promise. We have a promise too. It's right there in the Word. The thing I am realizing is that you can't just sit and wait for your blessing. By that I mean that there are things we have to do to operate in God's perfect will for us and His blessings. David didn't just sit around and mope about how long it was taking God to bless him. He stayed true to God and worshiped God and obeyed his commands.
One of the major things I have had to change in my life is to keep God's word on my mind all day and night. It sounds easy to do but it's not. I'm a busy lady. But I'm learning to keep my mind on God throughout the day. The Bible says to meditate on God's word, his commandments all day and night. So I try to do everything I do to God. Cleanliness is next to godliness, if I am cleaning I am thankful for a home to clean and that I can have a clean, rest full place for my husband to come home to. That is honoring God and my husband. I can thank Him for His wonderful goodness while I clean anything. See, He is on my mind. I can talk to him, I can quote scripture over my life while I do laundry. I am learning to mediate on Him and His word throughout the day and night. The other thing I have been changing is to keep His praise on my lips. The praise always goes before the battle, we learn that in church all the time. Well, I have at least. Before Israel went to battle they had the horns and trumpets and people praising ahead of the soldiers. The praise came first. We don't know what is going to happen to us 15 minutes from now, it's a pretty good idea to keep the praises ahead of you to help you through what may be coming. The Bible also says to do this. Words have power, even James says the tongue (what you are speaking) is like the rudder of a ship. What does the rudder do? It steers the ship. This is another one of the parts of the Bible that you can just nod you head to and move on and not apply it or you can believe it and do something about it. Jesus said out of the heart (your mind) the mouth speaks and what you speak can make you unclean. Jesus didn't say what you think makes you unclean, although he did say your thoughts are the same as your actions. But he didn't say your thoughts make you unclean. We are also told that every careless word will be judged. Why? Words are important and have power. Power to heal or injure we acknowledge but the Bible teaches more. James says the words you speak steer your life. Why is that? The Bible says also that your words can be a blessing to you or a trap. Why can they trap me if they mean nothing? By a trap it was not in the context of getting you into trouble, it was meant as in how they affected your whole life. So words have power and we are told to keep the praises of God on our lips. So I have been doing that too. It's working by the way, I have noticed a change in me and my family since I have been doing this.
My kids have chore lists to do each day, one of the items on their daily list is to read the scriptures I have on the sidebar that say who we are in Christ. I have noticed a change in them too, no kidding. I truly have. Could it be that speaking the Word of God out loud changes circumstances? If words truly have power then why shouldn't they?
I'm almost done.....
2 Corinthians 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor; that ye through his poverty might be rich.
From the book: "Jesus Christ was rich. Yet for our sakes, He became poor....... "well" some people said, "that just means spiritually rich."
But, no. The only way Christ became poor was from the material standpoint. He didn't become poor spiritually, because the spiritually poor couldn't raise the dead! If they could, everybody would be doing that.
The spiritually poor could not turn water into wine. No, Jesus certainly wasn't poor spiritually.
Also, the spiritually poor couldn't have fed five thousand people with a little boy's lunch. But Jesus did. The spiritually poor could not have wrought the healings and the miracles that Jesus did.
Jesus became poor materially for us. He was our Substitute. And the Scripture says God will meet our needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Phil 4:19) Paul said that writing to the Church at Philippi, but it applies to believers everywhere.
Phil 4:19 But my God shall supply ALL YOUR NEED according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
You see, this is talking about supplying all your need, including your financial and material needs as well as other needs. In fact, in this particular chapter in Philippians, Paul is talking about financial and material things, because in the previous verses, it says that these people had given of their material substance.
People misinterpret that word "rich." Someone said, "You mean God is going to make all of us millionaires?"
I didn't say that. The word "rich" according to the dictionary means a full supply. In other words, it means abundant provision. Well, isn't that what Phil 4:19 says, "But my God shall supply ALL your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus"?
It didn't say God shall supply half your need, No, it says all of them. It promises a full supply.
Jesus Himself in Matthew 6:33, "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." These things shall be added , not subtracted. Now what are "these things"? They are material things- something to eat, something to wear, and so on. In other words, "these things is talking about the material things of life. " End of book quoting.
This book is so awesome. No, it's not a get rich book. It's not a farce to try to make you think you will be dollar rich. It's such a great teaching tool to show how a life wrapped up in God will bless you in finances as well. But the book is truly a guide to show all of the things God wants us to be doing and how they will benefit us on this earth as well. It's not just about money, it is way more.
The next part of Chapter 1 talks about the law of giving and how to honor God with your faith, your giving and right motives.
I know this was long, most probably didn't finish it but I just believe when I put something out there God will direct whomever it will bless right on over to it and it will speak to them and they will read it. Certainly I do not blog to be popular or I would have a blog about decorating (something I love) and such and such. I just do what God speaks to me. Lots of people don't believe God works in finances but that is not what the Bible says. It takes money to support missionaries, It takes money to support the ministry. God wants his people blessed, he doesn't want us all rich, nope. We don't need to be. We need our needs supplied. All of our needs are different so his blessings are different. Simple enough. God is a big God and if He wanted us poor and suffering why did He create the garden of Eden? I've read that was a pretty magnificent place to be.
Hope this blessed you!!
Biblical Keys to Financial Prosperity , author Kenneth E. Hagin
Thank you Teresa for this book!!
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
"One of the most difficult tasks in ministering to folks is getting them to understand the truth that God wants them to prosper and do well in life. In fact, God wants them to prosper more than they want to! Many good Christian people have never entered into the dimension of prosperity that God intended for them, and one reason they haven't is a lack of understanding in this area.
If you want to walk in the perfect will of God and experience His richest and best for your life, you've got to do the perfect will of God. That requires honoring and obeying God and His Word.
Many Christians are not prospering today because they are not willing and obedient to the call of God on their lives or to some specific direction God has given them. Others simply need to get their thinking straightened out so they can think, talk, and act in line with God's Word concerning prosperity.
Still others give financially with wrong motives- just to get something in return. Or they give motivated by guilt or fear instead of by faith and love. And some Christians dishonor God and His Word, not only by failing to tithe and give offerings, but in the way they conduct their business affairs.
Success in God doesn't come overnight. And if you're not prospering in life right now, your prosperity in God won't appear overnight either. But if you'll continually honor and obey God and His Word, it will come."
Chapter 1: Poverty: A Blessing or a Curse. Chapter 1 is a great read. It lays the foundation of the entire redemption process from Adam and Eve and the death of Jesus on the cross. The it discusses the Curse of the Law. The curse of the law which is the penalty for breaking God's Law, includes spiritual death, sickness and disease, and poverty. Galations 3:13 says Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law. Period. You can choose to believe it or not. I personally think it's kind of useless to only believe parts of the Bible. Either you believe it or you don't. We didn't create the universe and mankind, what the heck do we know? No, if God says it then I just need to choose to believe it and not dissect it with what I think is the more likely truth.
Galations 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
The Bible says Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law.
But what is the curse of the law?
15 But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shalt come upon thee, and overtake thee.
(sorry but this is so worth the read!!)
Deuteronomy 28:16-19, 38-40
16 Cursed shalt thou be in the city, and cursed shalt thou be in the field.
17 Cursed shall be thy basket and thy store.
18 Cursed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy land, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep.
19 Cursed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and cursed shalt thou be when thou goest out...
38 Thou shalt carry much seed out into the field, and shalt gather but little in; for the locust shall consume it.
39 Thou shalt plant vineyards, and dress them, but shalt neither drink of the wine, nor gather the grapes; for the worms shall eat them.
40 Thou shalt have olive trees throughout all thy coasts, but thou shalt not annoint thyself with the oil; for thine olive shall cast his fruit.
Deuteronomy 28:1-14 lists all of the blessings for keeping God's law. It's really long but please read them. The curses listed certainly sound like poverty to me and the writer of the book too. At first I didn't quite understand what that curse meant. Did God curse me because I was not obedient and willing to do all his commands? Was it because I was not meditating on His Word night and day like the Word says to? Was it because His praise was not on my lips like his Word says it should be? Or was it because my words had been a trap to me because I was speaking negative things about our life? Well, it was all of those things but the author goes on at the end of the book to explain that there are just spiritual laws that are in effect for all of us. He likens it to gravity. We have the law of gravity right? No matter who you are you are under the law of gravity. It doesn't matter if you don't want to believe in it or not, gravity works for you. It is a law. There are spiritual laws too, so it's not necessarily that God looked down at us and said, "That family needs to be cursed.". It's just a spiritual law that is in effect for all of us. The only way to not operate in that law is to do what God says that we must do to be blessed and not cursed right? Simple enough, I was excited to learn those things.
I am taking this from the book because I know what some people will think. "Oh, that was just for back then, not now. Let's see what the author says. (This is worth the time!)
"A lot of people argue, "Well the Lord said that to Israel. The blessings for obeying God's laws and commandments don't apply to us."
But while we're on the subject of the Law, turn to Romans and Galatians.
Remember God said, "O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and withe their children for ever!" (Deut. 5:29)
Yes, that was written to Israel under the Old Covenant. But notice what the New Covenant says about fulfilling or obeying God's laws and commandments.
Romans 13:8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another:for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
Galations 5:14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Mark that down and don't let it get away from you. Israel had to keep God's commandments in order to prosper, and under the New Covenant we have a commandment to keep, too, in order to prosper. It's the commandment or law of love.
Notice Paul was writing that to Gentile Christians, not to Hebrew Christians, so we know he's not talking just to the Israelites. So if we're walking in love, we've fulfilled the Law.
Romans 13: 9,10 explains to keep the commandments and that love is the fulfilling of the law. Now go back to Galations 3:13 and 14 again and you'll see why we're not under the curse of the Law. 13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: 14 That the Blessing of Abraham might come on the gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.... 29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Well, what is Abraham's promise? Abraham's promise was threefold in nature. It was first a spiritual blessing. Second it was a physical blessing. And third, it was a financial and material blessing.
I'll stop here. Tomorrow I'll pick up. Long enough post and enough to chew on don't you think? I have really enjoyed this book!! I just want to say that in no way does the author or do I think that God intends for life to be perfect and have no trials. No matter who we are we need to be refined, disiplined and conformed into His image. But what he is saying is that there are spiritual laws and that to live a life in poverty, sickness, and sin is NOT God's plan for us and while most of us get the whole sin and eternal death thing, we need to belive God also for the poverty and sickness part too. Remember Jesus could do little miracles in his own hometown not because he wasn't full of the power to heal and do miracles but because of their lack of faith. We need to have faith in those things too and obey the word, not just be a hearer of it. I just felt I needed a disclaimer there.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
The title is somewhat deceiving. Here's why. The book is about financial principals for certain but oh it is so much more. This book is about living a life truly wrapped up in God. It is AMAZING! It makes sense though doesn't it? To be blessed financially (which is Biblical) is not something God just doles out to everyone. If paying our tithes was enough to be blessed in our finances wouldn't a large amount of Christians be thriving in finances? Wouldn't all Christians tithe once they saw the ones who did being blessed in the area of finances if tithing was enough?
I was expecting a book telling me how much to tithe. I was expecting lessons on offerings. I was expecting to learn God's principles on tithing and giving to the Church and what God's word says about provision for us.
Wow. I got so much more from this book. I have to say though that my book has a much prettier cover than the one shown. This was the one I found on the Internet, but what is inside is pure beauty. I don't recommend books lightly. Mostly because there are a farkzillion books on every subject and a great deal of them are just fine and dandy. But man, I have to recommend this book. Oh my, you will be so blessed if you read it. Now that I have read it I have to read it again. It's one of those books. This time I will be highlighting and taking notes.
The most simple and easiest thing I can say I have learned from the book and the CD series is something I knew to do but truly never did. I've been doing it lately and humph, I have to say it's pretty nice. What is the thing? You know it too, so please, if you'd like your life to be happier and more blessed then please consider actually doing what I have learned that we actually have to DO instead of just know.
1. Meditate on the word of God night and day. Keep it in your heart and mind. Think upon it.
Apparently this is pleasing to God, ha ha.
Psalms 1:2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord (God's Word); and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Remember what God told Joshua?
Joshua 1:8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therin day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therin: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.
The book translates it into modern day English as saying "This Word of God shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therin day and night, that thou mayest observe to do (do the Word; don't just be a hearer of the Word) according to all that is written therin: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous...."
I'll stop there. What is that actually saying? It's saying to be keeping God's Word in your thoughts day and night as in all the time. Be aware of God in you at all times and be a doer of the Word. Be thinking about God's Word and His commands day and night. Now, this sounds easy but we women are busy. If you are a woman like myself with little ones then you are lucky to get a moment to think clearly on something spiritual. If you are like me, an old bird approaching 40 with 4 kids the last of which is in his terrible 2's then your brain is clouded in a fog of chaos. I mean, I call the dog by my kids names. Sheesh. O.K. so we are busy people, well God didn't call us to be busy people. Oops, conviction. My being busy isn't an excuse from escaping God's commands? I've learned that being busy just means all the more that I need to meditate on God's word all day long.
I have been reading aloud (the out loud thing is important, more on that later) the scriptures that say who I am in Christ that I have posted on the top of the sidebar. Please print these for ya if you like. That has been a great part of my meditating on God's word. It has been a pleasure to know more of my place in God's heavenly realm. Then I just keep thinking about God and Bible scriptures I have read, stories, I talk to God, etc. It is becoming a habit, a great habit. It is a pretty crucial part of living a blessed life.
There are more things but I just wanted to post this one thing first. It's a biggie. It's also one of the hardest because it requires giving of our time to God. And our time is so precious as we race about and frankly most of us just don't meditate on God and His Word all day and night. So it's a change, but a great change and a rewarding one.
Oh, how I love this book!!