Persistence

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Forgive me for being MIA for awhile. Mom ended up back in the ER with another MRSA infection and needed immediate surgery. She is now back in a rehab facility on an IV antibiotic for 6 weeks.

Today I wanted to blog about prayer. My pastor talked about the topic this past Sunday, and although it seemed somewhat juvenile to me, I was able to take away a lot from the sermon.

Last night a friend messaged me about the very topic, asking whether it was okay to repeatedly ask God for something or if that showed lack of faith. My response was the above verse. I also reminded her of the parable of the persistent widow. However, deep down I knew where her question came from. I have been taught to ask for something once, and then step out in faith and thank God for it as though it were already done.

But this is hard. Especially when you have taken that approach for so long and not seen the manifestation of the healing, the financial provision, the restored marriage, the promotion, etc.

Satan likes to come in and cause doubt and unbelief. You may hear him whisper, “Your faith is too small.” Or, he may convince you that you haven’t done enough to earn what you are hoping for. He also may say, “It’s not your job to be trying to change this situation. Shouldn’t your spouse be the one praying?” Those are all lies. Yes, we are called to have faith and believe without doubting (Matthew 21:21), but I don’t believe it nullifies our faith to continue to ask God for that which we desire. If anything, it shows faith to keep pressing in and presenting our requests to Him rather than to simply stop asking.

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Photo can be found here.

Also, we must make sure that we are content in our current circumstance, trusting in God through whatever it may be. If we can’t trust Him in the tough times, why should He deliver us of them? Perhaps like Paul, He wants to display His power in our weakness, because otherwise He wouldn’t get to do so.

Some of the most valuable lessons I have learned in life have come through the desert seasons.

I will finish with this: What you desire may look different from what Papa desires. “The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.(Proverbs 16:9, NASB). He ultimately knows what is best for us. Compared to Him, we have such a narrow scope of life. Let’s continue to knock on the door of heaven persistently for that which we are believing for, but let’s also be patient and trust that Daddy truly does know best.

What are you believing God for?

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Be Bright!

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Flamingos at Busch Gardens Tampa

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.” — Matthew 5:14

Today I want to encourage you to shine brightly in this dark world. Be the flamingo in the otherwise bland environment. Let others see the joy in your eyes and the love in your heart so that they would ask you about it, and you might be able to share the hope you have found in Christ. Many blessings to you today and ALWAYS!

Taming the Tongue

 

I snapped this photo while making deliveries for my business. It looked so peaceful there!

“With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.” —‭‭James‬ ‭3:9-12‬ ‭

This morning the reading assignment in my Life Journal reading plan was the book of James, only 5 short chapters, but full of so much wisdom! Wow! Each time I read this book it seems I get more revelation and more and more color highlights my Bible. The tongue is such a powerful thing… I used to use it to destroy others, including my husband… I couldn’t believe that I had just praised God, listening to and singing worship music, and then resorted to my old fleshly ways of letting anger (and the devil) take hold of me. I’m in my Bible each day, I’ve been through deliverance, so what gives?

It’s a renewing of the mind, a recognizing of old patterns rising up that need to be suppressed (uprooted rather) and countered with Truth.

You can get rid of the demon but without closing the door that was opened to them in the first place, you can’t expect different results. It comes down to recognizing trigger points for the anger, the addiction, the depression, the anxiety, the (fill in blank) and taking them captive, because each time we give in, we give the devil a foothold, and soon it will become a stronghold (Eph. 4:27).

As believers, we CAN find freedom from that which has bound us from childhood. It takes some work on our part though—meeting God halfway. It takes 21 days to form a new habit. That can be difficult after a lifetime of acting/reacting out of the flesh, but it’s possible. It has been over a year since I’ve had an angry outburst that left me feeling like a failure and hypocrite (this is what Satan wants).

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Our first visit to the beach this year on Resurrection Sunday. FREEDOM!

Do I still get angry? Sure. Do I raise my voice at times? Yes. But I am now able to recognize it and repent of it before it goes any further to insults or throwing things… Repentance is key if you want to change. Don’t let pride get the best of you and go to bed angry holding on to bitterness. If you do, that stronghold will surely be formed, and it will be easier to keep repeating the same behavior.

I hope to some day not even get to the point of raising my voice, but rather be taken from glory to glory, becoming more and more like the Father. Humility is of utmost importance. It’s not easy, but it makes all the difference.

 
If you can relate to anything I have written, know that there is hope. Christ wants you free from the bondage of your flesh. No medication can help issues that are rooted in your childhood, your past. It may help by unplugging the “check engine” light, but you will likely find yourself fighting the same demons and wondering why you can’t have the freedom that God’s word speaks of.

We were meant for more. We don’t have to be our addiction, our disability, our depression, our disease, our anxiety. We don’t have to own it as our identity, our label. Jesus wants to take that from us and give us HIS identity. Oh beloved, we were made for so much MORE! Believe it. Receive it. Repent of ungodly thoughts, actions, and words spoken. Most importantly, forgive yourself. We are our own worst critic.

Here are some books I recommend for further reading:

The Holy Bible (Duh! 😜)

Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer

12 Power Thoughts by Joyce Meyer

Think like Heaven by Bob Hazlett

Root Issues by Mayra Leon

Disclaimer: I have been set free from depression, anxiety, fear, and a host of other strongholds through deliverance, prayer, and seeking hard after the Lord. This is not to imply that demonic influence is at the root of every issue, but I know from experience that it is for many. I assist with deliverance ministry and have seen people set free from things that doctors said they would struggle with for a lifetime and take meds for. I am one of them. For more information on this ministry, check out Above & Beyond Counseling Ministries.