Step Out, Step Up and Step In

“Don’t wait for the eternal.”

Weeks before this God had been stirring in my spirit to “lose my right way of thinking” to have supernatural, radical faith that goes beyond the normal. Not to care about what others think about me, to display the works of God through me. To pray for people in public (biggest fear) to witness to people (another fear).

The prayer on the Sermon on the Mount Jesus speaks these words. “In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”

Let’s look at this verse   “Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” What a powerful statement!

Everyone is entitled to this, not everyone is called to preach or teach, but everyone is called to spread the Gospel. We need to stop making excuses and step out into the waters.

Matthew 14:22-33

When the disciples were in the boat a great storm began to brew. We all know what happens next. The disciples begin to see Jesus walk on the water and were terrified. Who wouldn’t be terrified? They started to cry out in fear. Immediately Jesus spoke saying “Take heart; It is I. Do not be afraid.” And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus.  Jesus  affirming who He was, the disciples were still skeptical. Seriously? This man whom you’ve seen raise the dead, heal lepers and still your not sure if this is Jesus? Don’t we have this same outlook? We have seen God move and yet we fail to believe that He will bring us through whatever storm we are in, or whatever He has asked us to do. Were not stepping out, were staying in.

This text shows me that:

He will give you opportunities to step out into radical faith.

Where He guides He provides.

He is calling us to go deeper.

Expect the unexpected.

Whatever “fear” you have, let go of it and trust. Think not on worldly terms but an eternal perspective. Peter at first was thinking on his own terms, his right way of thinking. But when Jesus showed up, he chose not to lean on his understanding and step out.

 

Faith/Fear

faith or fear

 

Elijah flees from Jezebel 1 Kings 19:1-18

19 Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. 2 Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So may the gods do to me and more also, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by this time tomorrow.” 3 Then he was afraid, and he arose and ran for his life and came to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there.
4 But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he asked that he might die, saying, “It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my fathers.” 5 And he lay down and slept under a broom tree. And behold, an angel touched him and said to him, “Arise and eat.” 6 And he looked, and behold, there was at his head a cake baked on hot stones and a jar of water. And he ate and drank and lay down again. 7 And the angel of the Lord came again a second time and touched him and said, “Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you.” 8 And he arose and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mount of God.
The Lord Speaks to Elijah
9 There he came to a cave and lodged in it. And behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and he said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 10 He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” 11 And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake.12 And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.[a] 13 And when Elijah heard it,he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 14 He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” 15 And the Lord said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. 16 And Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint to be king over Israel, and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint to be prophet in your place. 17 And the one who escapes from the sword of Hazael shall Jehu put to death, and the one who escapes from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha put to death. 18 Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.”

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After Elijah killed hundreds of the Baal prophets after the account on Mount Carmel where Elijah shows the prophets of Baal that the only living god is Jehovah. With Ahab seeing the incident, he then told of the massacre to Jezebel. She then sends a messenger to Elijah, confronting and making death threats.

Jezebel claimed that she would kill Elijah. But why didn’t she send troops instead of only a messenger? Just like the enemy’s accusation. They are all false and without power. What makes us think that it is more powerful than us? Without knowing the Word, one could fall, but there is a remedy and that is the power of Jesus!

All of this happened at Elijah’s spiritual peak, whenever there is about to be victory, watch out because that’s when the enemy is going to hit you the hardest, why? Because it is of God, anything that God gives you the enemy wants to take it away, he wants your life to be miserable.

Where will faith lead you? It led Elijah into a cave. But before we start pointing fingers at Elijah. Let’s examine ourselves. When we don’t get what we want, do we pout or jump up and down? No one likes playing the waiting game, I know I don’t. What about the job offer that never came up or you are still there at that place of employment but yet the position never came open. What is it in your life that has made you been in the cave. Is it fear?

ENEMY’S THREATS ARE EMPTY

Once we start to learn his strategy of how he works against the believer, we have a better understanding how to come against him. Only with the Word, the Bible is our only line of defense; to quote and to know scripture. When Jesus was tempted, did He just walk away? Or just tell the Devil “leave me alone”? No, He used the Word. We are called to contend with the faith but yet without knowing the Word how do we stand firm in the Word of God? We won’t be able too. God has defeated the enemy, it is our duty to be firm in the resurrecting power of Jesus Christ and not fall.

This is why we must have a continued deposit of the Word of God and not lean on our own understanding. We may think we know it all but when the enemy comes are we going to ignore the temptation or the circumstance or call on God for the wisdom that we can only achieve from and that is the Word of God.

2. THE EFFECTS OF FEAR

Fear always leads one away from the Will of God
Faith always lead one toward the Will of God
Fear will hold you back
Faith will push you forward
Fear isolates
Faith motivates
Fear steals your joy
Fear condemns you
Elijah was lodged in a cave; fear isolates the believer thinking that it is impossible to get out of. It makes you think about the current situation that is at hand. Why did I do this? Or Why do I have to go through this.

When we let fear control our life instead of faith. The outcome isn’t going to be great. Trust in God.
1 John 4:18

8”There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.”

 

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Aching for Mercy

Have you ever ached for Mercy? Cried out to God for a miracle or just simply asking Him to meet a need in your life? 

This Bartemais was blind from birth. He has never seen a sunrise or a sunset, the face of his mother and father or sibling’s. He had never walked by himself, always needed someone to walk beside him. This blind man that everyone mocked at as they walked by him as Bartemais sat at the town’s square everyday, pleading, begging for relief. He was waiting, expecting a miracle until one day Mercy walked by.

Luke 18:35-43

[35] As he drew near to Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. [36] And hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what this meant. [37] They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” [38] And he cried out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

Are you persistent in your walk with God enough to where if you don’t see Jesus working in your life you will give up? Or are we going to seek His face so that we may hear him just like Bartemais had to do because that was his only option?

Persistance Pays Off

[39] And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”

We tend to listen to the crowd more than Jesus. But this man was desperate more than ever. He wasn’t embarassed and didn’t listen to the crowd by crying out for Him he was wanting His attention because Bartemais had heard of this man they call Jesus. This was his only chance for a miracle. Nothing or no one got in his way.

[40] And Jesus stopped and commanded him to be brought to him. And when he came near, he asked him, [41] “What do you want me to do for you?” He said, “Lord, let me recover my sight.” [42] And Jesus said to him, “Recover your sight; your faith has made you well.” [43] And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God. (Luke 18:35-43 ESV)

Jesus stood still. All the comotion of the crowd, the shouting the noise on the journey to Jerusalem for His brutal death, He still took the time to stop and answer a persistent plea for mercy. After years of desperation and incredible faith, Bartemais was made whole and followed Jesus. 

This story would have never been known if Bartemais would not have cried out for a miracle. He would not have been able to see the sunrise or a sunset, the face of his mother and father. He would be walked to this particular spot where he would sit and beg with no one knowing that he was aching for Mercy.

 Jesus knew what Bartemais needed. Jesus asked the question with full knowledge. But God still wants us to tell Him our needs as a constant expression of our trust on Him.

Are you aching for Mercy?

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compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm.

What is mercy? There are several Hebrew words that are associated with God’s mercy:

Kapporeth

      – means “ransom,” “propitiatory,” or “the mercy seat.”

Racham

      – means “to love,” “to have compassion,” or “to show mercy.”

Chesed

      – means “goodness,” “kindness,” “mercifulness,” or “loving-kindness.”

These Greek words are associated with mercy in the New Testament:

Eleemon

      – means “to show mercy,” “to pity,” “to have compassion,” or “to be merciful.”

Oiktirmos

      – carries the concept of “compassion” or “pity.”

When God Steps In

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God loves the “impossible” situations that we may think are “impossible” but to God they are possible. It’s His specialty.
There are those who try to do the impossible with their own strength but it gets them no where. Only God can heal that person of cancer; deliver the one from years and years of drug abuse, give sight to the blinded eyes or unstop the deaf ears. The list goes on. Whenever you surrender you are letting go of the situation and letting Him step in.

 

They said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?” And he said, “She is in the tent.” The LORD said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife shall have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him. Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years. The way of women had ceased to be with Sarah. So Sarah laughed to herself, saying, “After I am worn out, and my lord is old, shall I have pleasure?” The LORD said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child, now that I am old?’ Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, about this time next year, and Sarah shall have a son.” (Genesis 18:9-14 ESV)

 

What God had told Abraham and Sarah was an impossible turned into a possible! How many times have we leaned on our own understanding and thought there is no way this can be done. Until God steps in.

 

Abraham Intercedes for Sodom so the men turned from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the LORD. Then Abraham drew near and said, “Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? (Genesis 18:22-23 ESV)

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.  (2 Peter 3:9)

God wishes that no one should perish but to be with Him for eternity. We all know someone who is lost. Are we standing before the Lord just as Abraham stood pleading that God could spare his loved ones?

 

 

Stepping off Into the Unknown Part 1

Picture your life as a boat, and at times it gets a little shaky, un-easy. You don’t know where to go, it’s dark at times. You hear nothing, all is quiet except the wind and waves that are crashing up against you. You have been struggling for some time now and all you want to see is dry land.

We are all on a journey known as life. Some use road maps to tell them where to go, other words their instinct, feelings might tell them that they need to lean on their own understanding. But we choose for the ones who have been enlightened by the Word of God and having Him as our lighthouse to look to Him for guidance, and strength. We walk by faith and not by sight, rather than walking by sight and not by faith. But is it this easy?

Let’s take a look at Matthew 14:22

Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat by this time was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”

And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him,“O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying,“Truly you are the Son of God.” (ESV)

 

The first question I have is that why did Jesus, “immediately” “made” the disciples get into the boat in such a hurry.

1. The excitement of the disciples and the of the crowd could have spurred into the initiation of the Messiah, but yet it was not that time yet

2. He wanted to pray – after a miracle of feeding the multitude who wouldn’t want to come before the father and thank him?

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Jesus told them that He would meet them on the other side…

The disciples were thinking, “where are you going,” “why are you leaving us here all alone”. Same thought comes to mind that whenever a trial or situation arises, the boat starts shaking, the wind tossing our life around we start asking God where are you?

– I can imagine the thoughts of what happened to them last time while they were in the lake (Luke 8) But Jesus was with them asleep, so why did it matter this time?

Luke 8:22 ” Let us cross over to the other side of the lake, He wasn’t saying “Let us perish”

Jesus keeps His word, all of His words are promises but we have to activate those promises by walking in faith even when the worst of the worst becomes visible.

Your life is in His hands, you are not the captain, He is the captain. He will show you the way through this journey called life.

What happens when you become captain?

– Self fails
– Lost direction
– follow feelings
– exhausted

It is like the disciples had forgot about the words before they left shore ” I will go before you and meet you on the other side” 

It’s during these times that our faith becomes strengthened if we let him…

James 1

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

It would have been more beneficial for the disciples to cry out to Jesus instead of rowing against the waves.

How many times have you tried to fix the problem rather than asking Jesus for help?

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Rest

In Luke 8 beginning with verse 22, we hear of a story that is preached many times over and over, but are we missing the meaning of these verses? I know for myself and others that we can go back to the Bible and read the very same chapter and we will go over it next week or a little longer and there will be something that God magnifies to you different from before. What I had got out of this chapter and verse is that the disciples were awake when Jesus was sleeping. So?  When Jesus is resting we should rest, when He is healing we should be laying hands on the sick, when He is telling the good news we should be out telling the good news to those who sit out in darkness. I am impressed by the fact that He could sleep. His mind and heart were peaceful enough, trusting in the love and care of His Father in heaven, that He could sleep in the storm. Yes there was a storm but He new the care of His Father in Heaven until the disciples awoke Him.

That question was asked one day last week when I was laying in bed and had all these worries that I was thinking about like “What if” or “Is this possible”, those thoughts were quickly extinguished by the spirit saying over and over “rest”…”rest”

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We all have payed more attention to the waves instead of Jesus at times, but how can you not? You have this huge mountain that is not moving, it’s there you think for good. Or is it?

“And they awoke him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!”

The disciples were filling “un-easy” and they immediately went to Jesus, ask yourself this how many times have you went straight to Jesus in your trials?

“And He awoke and rebuked the wind and the raging waves, and they ceased, and there was a calm. He said to them, “Where is your faith?”

Are we resting in Him? Giving Him our everything? Where is your faith?

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Giving Until it Hurts

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She made a vow: Hannah promises her son to the work of the LORD, vowing that he will be a Nazirite from birth (I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall come upon his head). According to Numbers 6, the vow of a Nazirite included the following:
 
 
I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life: The child born would be a Levite, and being of that tribe, would be already dedicated unto the LORD, because God regarded the tribe of Levi as His own special possession. But the time of a Levite’s special dedication to the LORD only lasted from the age of 30 to 50 (Numbers 4:2-3). Here, Hannah was taking something that already belonged to the LORD in some sense, and gave it again to the LORD in a greater way – for the whole life, and in a the dedication of a Nazirite, which was a greater consecration than a Levite.
 
Even so, we may be dedicated unto the LORD – but is there a greater dedication God wants from us? It would have been easy for Hannah to say, “I don’t need to dedicate my child to the LORD, because he is already dedicated.” But there was a deeper dedication the LORD was trying to draw out of Hannah. Is there a deeper dedication the LORD is trying to draw out of you?

Unfamiliar Territory

what faith is
Healing your heart, reclaiming your true identity of wholeness can feel like unfamiliar territory.  Love, even though it’s our true nature, can feel completely unfamiliar.
It takes tremendous willingness to venture into unfamiliar territory.  We often don’t bother to venture into the “unknown” unless we’re so afraid of remaining where we are that we cannot bear the thought of it.  Pain becomes the motivation.
Pain and fear can also be used like a trampoline to catapult us OUT of the suffering and onto he road of healing.  It serves a holy purpose.
Any place in your life, your body, your heart and your mind where you are experiencing pain is an indicator that you are holding very tightly to a belief that is not true.
What I love about God is that we don’t even have to know what that false belief is in order to have a complete and total healing.  All we must do is be willing to surrender it, make a holy offering of it and ask for the healing.
Once we surrender and open to receive the healing than it’s time to be mindful of our thinking.  We become observers, alert for the thoughts that feel uncomfortable and false so that we can surrender those too.  If we’re interested in our healing then we learn to commit to purification of our thinking, not a little, but completely.
Complete surrender is uncharted water for most of us.  It can feel very risky.  ”We might be called upon to give up something we need” – that’s what the ego tries to convince us of.  The fact is that everything we need is ours forever and cannot be taken away from us.  It requires tremendous willingness in order to believe that.  It takes trust and faith.  Without them, there will always be fear.
Trust and faith provide greater security than anything of this world.  To know that you must be willing to activate it through living it.  The Truth is that we risk EVERYTHING if we don’t place our Trust and Faith in Love.

– See more at: http://jenniferhadley.com/2013/07/when-trust-faith-are-unfamiliar-territory/#sthash.vI1HGaHU.dpuf

 

One morning as I was walking into the front door of my workplace, I had gotten their earlier than anyone else. As I began to reach for the handle of the door I looked down and stepped back in a hurry. To my amazement I had almost stepped on a bird. I stared in unbelief, “what is wrong with this bird?”, is it blind? I had went in an unpacked a few things and came back out to go to my car, and again I almost stepped on the bird that had not moved from the first time that I had almost stepped on it. unbelievable, I thought it was hurt so I knelt down and took a good look at it. It’s beady eyes that didn’t even look afraid were blinking, its head was turning, not hurt. I then scooted it with my foot to see if it would fly away or become frightened. Nothing, I then rolled a shopping cart near to it, still no movement. I then came back inside and soon one of my co-workers came in right after me. I said Rob! Come out here and look at this crazy bird, I’ve almost stepped on it, I scooted the bird with my foot and still, it didn’t even move! And did I tell you that I rolled a shopping cart near to it and still no flinch? Come out here and take a look. What are you talking about, there is no bird out there. I said ” of course there is” I looked and the bird was gone. I thought to myself, okay God, your speaking to me through this bird, What is it? ” You need to be like this bird, and not move whenever you see danger come towards you. have an unshakeable faith! That cannot be weathered by storms or circumstances or trials.”

“Why do you think that I can’t do what I have told you what I can do.”

Weeping May Endure

what faith is

1 There was a man named Elkanah from Ramathaim Zophim in the mountains of Ephraim. He was the son of Jeroham, grandson of Elihu, great-grandson of Tohu, whose father was Zuph from the tribe of Ephraim.  Elkanah had two wives, one named Hannah, the other Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but Hannah had none.   Every year this man would go from his own city to worship and sacrifice to the Lord of Armies at Shiloh. Eli’s two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, served there as priests of the Lord. Whenever Elkanah offered a sacrifice, he would give portions of it to his wife Peninnah and all her sons and daughters.   He would also give one portion to Hannah because he loved her, even though the Lord had kept her from having children.  Because the Lord had made her unable to have children, her rival ⌊Peninnah⌋ tormented her endlessly in order to make her miserable. This happened year after year. Whenever Hannah went to the Lord’s house, Peninnah would make her miserable, and Hannah would cry and not eat.  Her husband Elkanah would ask her, “Hannah, why are you crying? Why haven’t you eaten? Why are you so downhearted? Don’t I mean more to you than ten sons?”  -1 Samuel 1-8

Hannah was pursuing God despite the circumstance that she was in. God had closed her womb, but yet as her husband asked her why are you crying? why haven’t you ate? why are you so sad? Hannah kept pursuing and did not complain or ask why. It is true that God will place us in seasons to where everything seems to be falling apart but yet He is still God and we must seek Him and hold onto to Him. “Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning.” – Psalm 30:5.

God was using her disability for his glory, what meant so much to her is what she didn’t have. No one could help her in this situation, no surgery could be performed to outwit God. She was seeking for a miracle.

 “God would use the closed womb of Hannah, and the pain from being childless, to accomplish something great in her life and in the whole plan of salvation. Even though things were hard, God was still in charge.”

What happens in these seasons of desperation, & heartache? It’s like this; God is leading us past the familiar territory of faith and into the uncharted territory of faith. Like Abraham who obeyed God to go on top of the mountain and sacrifice his son. It was a new level of faith that Abraham was uncharting with his walk with God.  And in this uncharted territory of faith is when we see the word impossible become possible.

What is it in your life that you are crying out for? Is it a relationship, financial, personal struggle that you are weeping before God? Keep seeking, keep knocking and the door will be opened!

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What faith is: A Resource of Power

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  A Resource of Power

Noah’s power to live triumphantly among his unbelieving contemporaries was a triumph of grace and faith. No man could be expected to find in himself the resources to live as he lived. He had the power to take decisive action as his society drifted toward self – destruction. He exhibited the power to make incisive declarations to those who did not heed what he was saying. He kept on saying it nevertheless. He had the power to show an alternative attitude to that which prevailed among the people of his day. He walked a lonely road. Many years ago I saw a magnificent tapestry in a home for recovering alcoholics in Germany. It was a picture of a stream with a shoal of fish heading one way and a solitary fish swimming in the opposite direction. Underneath were the words: “Any dead fish can float downstream – it takes a live one to swim against it.” Noah through his faith had resources of strength to be a live one!

The Only Resource

It amazes me how Noah did not get distracted during his time of building the ark, 120 days of doing repetitive work would be insane, being mocked at everyday by the people would be enough for anyone to become unglued but Noah kept on, not letting anything or anyone get in his way, how, why? It was the will of God for Noah and His resource was God not within his own abilities. We may think sometimes that our lives of broadcasting Christ is repetitive, but that’s the way its supposed to be. When we get distracted by the cares of this world and ______________ (insert your distraction’s) can lead us into a place of solitary confinement within ourselves that blocks out the will of God. When we depend on our resource we become stagnated and brittle, breaking apart at every little distraction that comes our way unless we rely on His resource the Holy Spirit to keep us full of His power, His strength, in order to do the impossibilities.

 
 
In the beauty of His majesty,
 Who reminds me of His grace,
Has rescued me beyond my own capabilities.
My strength failed & so did my pride.
My ambitions, my views on life were crushed
My dignity & selfish ways were exposed for me to proclaim Him
As the only resource of my life. – Gary F.
 
 
“He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.” – Jeremiah 17:8 ESV
 
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What Faith is: A Release of Blessing

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“He blotted out every living thing that was on the face of the ground, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens. They were blotted out from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those who were with him in the ark. And the waters prevailed on the earth 150 days.” – Genesis 7:24,25

As we had read earlier the topic of this series called “What Faith is: The Relationship of Trust” we find that Noah was trusting in God in a circumstance that had never been done before in history and will never be done in history again. The words of “build an ark” was spoken to Noah by God in an hour of desperation for God’s people to come to repentance before the flood waters came. Even though many ignored Noah’s preaching, Noah still pressed on never quitting, never complaining of what was happening.

The blessing Noah’s faith released in his own life also spilled over into his family’s experiences. “Only Noah and those who were with him in the ark remained alive”. Noah had just released a blessing into his life by obeying God! What circumstance are you in right now that could release a blessing in your life?

What Faith is: A Readiness to Obey

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Noah’s faith: Part 3 of 7

1 Samuel 12:24 Only fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you.

Only fear the Lord . . . for consider what great things He has done for you: All of our service, all of our obedience, all of our love for God should be put in this context. We do it because of the great things He has done for us. We don’t serve God so as to persuade Him to do great things for us. He has done the great things, and asks us to receive them by faith. Then we serve Him because of the great things he has done for us.

– We can only keep perspective in our Christian lives if we keep focused on what great things He has done for us. And if we lose perspective, everything is distorted. Police in Seal Beach, California, got an urgent call from a resident looking through his new telescope: a pink Corvette was being ravaged in the surf, and the caller was afraid that someone might be trapped inside. Officers rushed to the scene, but couldn’t find the car. The man confirmed he could still see it, so officers came to his house to take a look. Through his telescope, they saw it too: a “Barbie-sized” toy car on the beach, highly magnified by the powerful lens. “Had he panned his telescope up a little from the ocean . . . he would’ve realized what he was looking at,” said police Sgt. Rick Ransdell. The cops recovered the toy, which was less than a foot long, he said. Many people tend to magnify their problems and lose sight of what great things He has done for you.

A Relationship to Obey

James reminds us that “faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead” (James 2:17). By faith Noah set to work building a mammoth ark. He gathered “seven each of every clean animal, a male and his female; two each of animals that are unclean, a male and his female; also seven each of birds of the air, male and female, to keep the species alive on the face of the earth” (Genesis 7:2,3). If the flood was universal then the task of gathering animals from all parts of the globe is mind-boggling, not to mention feeding and cleaning up after them! One ancient writer solved this problem by asserting that they all hibernate so they only needed feeding once! If the flood was local then the task was not as great but was still immense. Neither was Noah overwhelmed with the responsibility thrust upon him. He took that in his stride of faith too. And he was clearly not at all deterred by the apparent incongruity of what he was doing. In other words, his faith worked!

Two by two they went into the ark to Noah: God never has a problem getting the animals to do what He
wants. Only man is more stupid than the animals. The ox knows its owner and the donkey its
master’s crib; but Israel does not know, My people do not consider.
(Isaiah
1:3)

Most times the readiness to obey is cancelled out by not having faith, that’s what it is. We get scared, we move by feelings instead of the Spirit more than we should. To have the release of a blessing we must learn to walk in obedience. Remember, consider the great things that He has done for you.

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What Faith is: A Relationship of Trust

what faith is

Noah’s Faith: Part 2 of 7

11 Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence. 12 And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. 13 And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth. 14 Make yourself an ark of gopher wood. – Genesis 6:11-14

“all Noah knew was that God will judge the earth, and he was supposed to build a big barge. Since it had not rained yet on the earth, it is reasonable to suppose Noah didn’t know what God was meant yet”.

“But I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall come into the ark, you, your sons, your wife, and your sons’ wives with you. 19 And of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every sort into the ark to keep them alive with you. They shall be male and female.”

The judgment of God was announced and man failed to hear and to respond. Modern man either does not believe God exists or he believes that if He is such a nice guy that He would not be unkind enough to judge anybody or anything. This wishful thinking needs to be corrected by proper enunciation of who God really is and what He has already said and done in human history.

Even through God’s wrath we find his mercy, there was 120 days of the ark building that man could have responded to Noah’s preaching. There was room in the upper deck for those who God had anticipated their repentance but found none. God warns before he judges, He delays the promised wrath; His patience should never be abused; it should be cherished.

 Then the Lord said to Noah, “Go into the ark, you and all your household, for I have seen that you are righteous before me in this generation.”

When Noah took his big step of faith into the ark, “The Lord shut him in” suggesting that God was gently but firmly assuring Noah that he had done the right thing and that he was indeed secure. But Noah’s faith had already been in evidence for a considerable period while the ark was being constructed. And his faith had preserve during the year-long flood because strangely there is no record of God speaking to Noah during that period. He had to go on trusting through thick and thin, whether he could see and understand or not.

Faith: A Relationship of Trust 

TRUST – A five letter word that marriages, relationships, friendships are made by and can be ruined by. It’s the character of that person that either can be trusted or not be trusted. We have all been there in every circumstance of trusting an individual, a friend, a parent or anyone that we know for sure to carry out what you have asked them to do. With being a minister, people trust me in too many area’s of my life to count! From friends and people I barely know telling me about personal situations that I would not even be willing to tell my best friend. It’s a reputation that I have; God has given me that special gift in my life to use it, not abuse it. I take that need, request, of that person and intercede in their situation. Trusting God that He will come through in His timing.

Noah trusted God. From the time that God called Noah to build the ark, Noah had asked no question’s to why He would have him do such a thing, or complain of how long it would take or that he needed more help to carry out this task.  Remember God saying “Make yourself”? This means this was Noah’s project. He was not to simply contract it out to
someone else.

Image

Have you found that relationship of trust?

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What Faith is: A Response to Revelation

what faith is

Noah’s faith: Part 1 of 7

 The Lord was grieved with mankind. ” The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.  And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart.  So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.”  But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.”

The human race from the very beginning after the instance of what Adam and Eve had partaken of in the garden, sin entered the human race, non erasable, non removable, never to be the perfect example of what God had intended to be. This shows the catastrophic results of how sin effects God, that He would “blot out man whom I have created.”

“God’s sorrow at man, and the grief in His heart, are striking. This does not
mean that creation was out of control, nor does it mean that God hoped for
something better but was unable to achieve it. God knew all along that this was
how things would turn out, but our text tells us loud and clear that as God sees
His plan for the ages unfold, it affects Him. God is not unfeeling in the face
of human sin and rebellion.” – enduringwordmedia.com

_______________________________________________________________

“But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord”

“While God commanded all the earth to be cleansed of this pollution, He found one
man with whom to begin again: Noah, who found grace in
the eyes of the Lord
.

Noah didn’t earn grace; he found it. No one earns grace, but we
can all find it.” – enduringwordmedia.com

Faith: A Response to Revelation

We know that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom.10:17), but there are few more striking examples of what that means than Noah, Out of the blue he was told about a cataclysmic flood and he believed God. He was informed that the end of all flesh was at hand, and he believed that, too. Told to build an ark the length of one and a half football fields and to fill it with animals because all the animals would be destroyed, he believed it! And when he was invited by the Lord to “Come into the ark, you and all your household, because I have seen that you are righteous before Me in this generation” (Gen 7:1) he took what must have been a very difficult step out of all that was a familiar and understandable into a situation which was incomprehensible except to the eye of faith.

def. Revelation – a surprising and previously unknown fact; the making known of a secret or the unknown.

God in all of His glorious wonder has the unknown that we look ahead in our lives and try to figure out already figured out, He has the blueprints, all we have to do is follow and obey what seems to be difficult tasks that He has set out before us, but His word will never return void neither will He leave you forsake you, He will surely see you through.

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What Faith is

A sneak peek of a new series entitled “What Faith is”

 

what faith is

Faith is the inner knowing that no matter what happens in life, we are loved and can grow into a fuller human being. Faith is the inner knowing, the trust that we have in Christ to know that He is the comforter, Shepard, and most of all our redeemer. In this series we will be taking a deeper look into the scriptures of the live’s who had faced uncertainty, hardships that stretched their faith into an unwavering faith. Join me in the coming month’s as we look at the live’s of Noah, Abraham, Jacob and many more.