Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Raw Risk

Excerpt from Mark Batterson’s book
In A Pit With A Lion On A Snowy Day
“Now think of spiritual maturity as a continuum. On one side is God-consciousness and on the other side is self-consciousness. To become like Christ is to become less self-conscious and more God-conscious. The end result is the crucifixion of ungodly inhibitions that keep us from chasing lions. [A lion is: a big problem, a failure, or your greatest fear) I like the way priest and author Ron Rolheiser say it: ‘Isn’t it the task of the Holy Spirit to introduce some madness and intoxication into the world? Why this propensity for balance and safety? Don’t we all long for one moment of raw risk, one moment of divine madness?’ As I look back on my life, it is the moments of ‘raw risk’ when I came alive.”

Monday, September 12, 2011

All the world will know… by Haley Jalinski

All the world will know that I, the LORD, am your Savior and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Israel. Isaiah 49:26

God in the Old Testament fought to keep His name and power among the nations. He kept reminding people of Himself and what he could do. He honored those who honored Him. He gave mercy and forgiveness openly. And proclaimed what He was feeling outwardly through His prophets. Then there was 400 years of silence before Jesus, the Messiah, came. Then Jesus cam and fought to keep the glory of God close to man’s hearts so that they could choose Him after He made it possible for God and man to be together in relationship again. From Jesus to us has there been silence? Or a great declaring, an outrageous proclaiming of who He is? He works through us now, not on His own, because we aren’t separated anymore! He has brought us into the story. A story that involves conflict, a fight, between two kingdoms. Good and evil.

I would just like to ask how many more years of silence will there be?
       Or will your passion stand for it?
             Stand for keeping the glory of God hidden?

Some think God’s glory is locked away in the Ark of the Covenant somewhere, lost. But No! It is in the hearts of men. We reveal what’s in our hearts. God doesn’t force anything out of us.

The question is when will we allow what’s been saving us to save others?

Who can snatch the plunder of war from the hands of a warrior?  Isaiah 49:24

What is our plunder?
     What are our fruits?
            Do you know them or can you see them at all?

Our culture is all about comfort and pleasure but our lives are suppose to look meaningless to the world. Like Paul it looked like he had nothing at the end of his life. But his riches were in spirit and his eternal hope. Are you ready for persecution? Because it will come when we boldly declare, “Here am I, send me!”
         “Be it done unto me, LORD!”

What are we going to let the world know?

Written by: Haley Jalinski

September 5, 2009

Friday, September 9, 2011

Trust Leads to Hope

Trust means I am confident that another person will care for me and my situation as well or better than I would do it myself. It allows me to let my guard down and frees me to lean upon the other person….It’s sharing my burden. Remember the old “Nestea Plunge” ads? The thirsty man or woman would confidently fall back knowing it would be a soft and refreshing landing. Sadly, very few people can say that if you fell back your friend would be able to catch you no ands, ifs or buts about it.  Sadder still is the fact that many Christians can’t say that about their relationship with God. Ask God to bring you this kind of friend…and more importantly, commit to BE a trustworthy friend!
·         Proverbs 3:5-6: Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct (make straight or smooth) your paths
·         Psalm 37:3: Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.

Do you trust Him? You can. Trust is essential for enjoying our living hope. In fact hope and trust come from the same root word in the Greek. They are intertwined, inseparable, inextricably bound forever. One is absolutely dependent upon the other. Hope is born where trust has taken root. The promises of God don’t carry much weight if we can’t trust Him.

God wants you to trust Him. He has gone to great lengths to prove His love. If you’re tempted to doubt that He has your best interest at heart look to the cross. He longs to give you above and beyond what you can imagine
·         John 10:10: I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
·         Ephesians 3:20: Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.
"Let your unfailing love surround us, LORD, for our hope is in you alone." Psalm 33:22
Building Friendships at a Women's Conference 
Sudan Women's Ministry

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Refined in His fire

Intimate Adoration ~ Refined in His fire

I have no doubt you are facing hardship, these are perilous days. The circumstances of my hardship may look different from yours but our hearts feel the same deep emotions when under the weight of a trial. We are being sifted like wheat; Satan is out for our very souls…..but praise God he will never prevail! You and I need to be grounded….fixed, steadfast, confident, and immoveable…in the things of the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58). Laying aside all that so easily besets us, so that we can fully and firmly grasp hold of Him (Hebrews 12:1-4).

To experience this type of intimacy we have to trust the Lord. We can’t surrender, we can’t relinquish all our preconceived ideas unless we know beyond any shadow of doubt God has our best interests at heart. 
  • I have to KNOW that God loves my spouse more than I do;
  • I have to KNOW that God heals all our diseases;
  • I have to KNOW that He is wiser in my trials then I or anyone else (including my enemies Psalm 19);
  • I have to KNOW that He is Sovereign;

Because just like you, these kinds of questions plagued my heart,
  • Where is God?
  • Why doesn’t He just heal and stop that suffering?
  • How can He allow my reputation to be destroyed with those lies?
  • How can God allow us to suffer like this when we have given our whole lives for the kingdom?

Without intimate knowledge of God - without being able to see, hear, touch, smell, and taste Him  I would get stuck in those thoughts and my faith would be dead. I would stop leaning on my Beloved and start striving – which inevitably leads to failure. Oh Beloved, cast your cares unto Jesus, run into His protective embrace….let the storms rage, He is greater than all threats and HE IS ON YOUR SIDE!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Oswald Chambers

The initiative against despair
Rise let us be going. Matthew 26:46.
"The disciples went to sleep when they should have kept awake, and when they realized what they had done it produced despair. The sense of the irreparable is apt to make us despair, and we say—‘It is all up now, it is no use trying anymore.’ If we imagine that this kind of despair is exceptional, we are mistaken, it is a very ordinary human experience. Whenever we realize that we have not done that which we had a magnificent opportunity of doing, then we are apt to sink in despair, and Jesus Christ comes and says—‘Sleep on now, that opportunity is lost forever, you cannot alter it, but arise and go to the next thing.’ Let the past sleep, but let it sleep on the bosom of Christ, and go out into the irresistible future with Him.
There are experiences like this in each of our lives. We are in despair, the despair that comes from actualities, and we cannot lift ourselves out of it. The disciples in this instance had done a downright unforgivable thing; they had gone to sleep instead of watching with Jesus, but He came with a spiritual initiative against their despair and said—‘Arise and do the next thing.’ If we are inspired of God, what is the next thing? To trust Him absolutely and to pray on the ground of His Redemption.
Never let the sense of failure corrupt your new action." 
~ Oswald Chambers

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Mere opportunities...

1 Corinthians 1:25-31: Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.  For you see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God has chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;  and base things of the world, and things which are despised, has God chosen, yes, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:  That no flesh should glory in his presence.   But of Him are you in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:  that, according as it is written, He that glories, let him glory in the Lord.

The very weakness the enemy torments us about can be the chosen conduit of God’s omnipotence, all we need do is relinquish ourselves to Him as Lord and Master.
Fear not therefore fellow soldier, our weaknesses, frailties, infirmities, reproaches and failures are merely opportunities to magnify His grace.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Allured by His love

Intimate Adoration ~ Allured by His love

Hosea 2:14-15: Therefore, behold, I will allure her, I will bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfort to her. I will give her her vineyards from there, And the Valley of Achor as a door of hope; she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, as in the day when she came up from the land of Egypt.

Can you hear His whispers? Linger here and you will hear what the Spirit has to say to you. This is our time to ask for more – more of Him, more of His wisdom, more of His power, and more of His vision. Intimately knowing God’s heart is vital to navigating these dark days we are living in. It’s far too easy to get swept into the frenzy and lose our priorities in its tyrannical demands and chaotic trials. We must run after Him, especially when He calls.

Song of Solomon 7:13The mandrakes give off a fragrance, and at our gates are pleasant fruits, all manner, new and old, which I have laid up for you, My beloved.
  • Mandrakes: the love-flowers or lovely ones (so the word signifies), or the love-fruits; it was something that was in all respects very grateful
  • Your life should have stored up and ready to be meted out pleasant fruits. This is your reasonable service to Him whom your soul loves. (Romans 12:1-2)

Monday, July 25, 2011

Oswald Chambers

The initiative against depression
Arise and eat. 1 Kings 19:5.
"The angel did not give Elijah a vision, or explain the Scriptures to him, or do anything remarkable; he told Elijah to do the most ordinary thing, viz., to get up and eat. If we were never depressed we should not be alive; it is the nature of a crystal never to be depressed. A human being is capable of depression, otherwise there would be no capacity for exaltation. There are things that are calculated to depress, things that are of the nature of death; and in taking an estimate of yourself, always take into account the capacity for depression.
When the Spirit of God comes He does not give us visions; He tells us to do the most ordinary things conceivable. Depression is apt to turn us away from the ordinary commonplace things of God’s creation, but whenever God comes, the inspiration is to do the most natural simple things—the things we would never have imagined God was in, and as we do them we find He is there. The inspiration which comes to us in this way is an initiative against depression; we have to do the next thing and to do it in the inspiration of God. If we do a thing in order to overcome depression, we deepen the depression; but if the Spirit of God makes us feel intuitively that we must do the thing, and we do it, the depression is gone. Immediately we arise and obey, we enter on a higher plane of life." ~ Oswald Chambers

Friday, July 22, 2011

Abandon to Him....

Who is your Master? You can only have one, 'Choose ye this day Whom you will serve!' Jesus is worthy of all of you; so gladly, intentionally and urgently abandon your right to yourself…just there God will have unhindered way and bring forth streams in what you thought was a desert.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Let Him nourish you....

Intimate Adoration ~ He is the Vine, you are a branch, drink in His nourishment

Reflect on the fact that your soul a vineyard – planted, watered, weeded, and harvested by the Lord.  Take a few minutes to meditate on these things:
The Owner of the Vineyard knows everything about His precious vines:
  • What will enrich the soil? Fertilizer, sunlight, water….
  • What will enrich our soul? Worship music, communion, fellowship….
  • What pests threaten and weaken its productivity? Insects, mold, birds…
  • What distracts or hinders you from being focused on Him and what He would have us do? TV, Facebook, gossip at the office….
  • Where plants that need sun or shade will flourish? Knowing where to be based on the environment….are you blooming where He planted you? He chose that spot for a purpose, ask Him what the purpose is….
  • What gifts and weaknesses in you need to be shown for His glory? Ask Him….
  • When there is need for a Sabbath? The Lord had the land rest every seven years, He asked man to rest one day in seven, where have you built rest into your schedule….
  • When does your soul need to rest and wait on God? Daily quiet time, weekly prayer meetings, meditation….

He entrusted us to keep (guard) it with all diligence (Proverbs 4:23). How is your vineyard? You must let Him show you how to best care for it….

The Lord desires for fruitfulness, He does not want any of us to be barren or even sparse.
He will protect and cherish, with loving, particular, meticulous care, so none of those good motions and dispositions that make you young and tender get nipped, trampled, blasted, or rubbed off.
  • He won’t shrink back at the disrepair
  • No contamination can harm Him
  • Nothing repulses Him
  • He is a Healer…a Helper…a restorer of Hope!
It’s there in the vineyard, our own souls, that He gives us His love (Hosea 2:14)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Quote by Augustine

How sweet all at once it was for me to be rid of those fruitless joys which I had once feared to lose!You drove them from me, You who are the True, the Sovereign Joy. You drove them from me and took their place, You who are ALL Pleasure, though not to flesh and blood, You who outshine all light, yet are hidden deeper than any secret in our hearts, You who surpass all honour, though not in the eyes of men who see all honour in themselves.  O Lord my God, my Light, my Wealth, and my Salvation. - Augustine.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Take inventory...

Read 1 Corinthians 3:9-15...

Take inventory of your life.....
All that is visible to the eye, all that ushered lofty accolades and extravagant praises to your name, and any act of service not borne from a heart of agape will not withstand the test of fire.

We will lament and regret EVERY “little” compromise and inward pride and lovelessness. Repent now, die to yourself, be healed and transformed by His touch so that from this day onward you will be hidden in Christ.

1 Timothy 1:5: The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.

1 Corinthians 4:1-7...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Names of God

James Montgomery Boice points out,

“The Names of God are windows through which His character is seen:”
El Elyon = Most High, Possessor of Heaven and earth
El Shaddai = Almighty God
Adonai = Lord
Jehovah Shammah = God who is there
Jehovah Jireh = The Lord will provide
Jehovah Nissi = The Lord our Banner
Jehovah Rapha = God our Healer
Jehovah Roi = God that sees ALL
Ego Ami = I AM

What will you add to this list? How has He revealed Himself to you this week, this month, since you became His child?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Never has Jesus loved thee more...

A Garden of Fountains ~ Francis J Roberts

Behold, My hand is upon thee to bless thee and to accomplish all my good purpose. For this hour I have prepared they heart; and in My kindness I will not let thee fail.
Only relinquish all things into My hands; for I can work freely only as ye release Me by complete committal – both of thyself and others. Even as was written of old, “Commit they way unto the LORD; trust also in Him; and He shall bring it to pass,” (Psalm 37:5). I will   be thy sustaining strength; and My peace shall garrison thy mind. Only TRUST ME – that all I do is done in love.
For adversities must of necessity come. They are part of the pattern of life’s pilgrimage for every individual; and who can escape them? But I say unto thee, that for those who walk in Me, and for those who are encircled by the intercessory prayers of My children, I shall make of the suffering, yea, I shall make of trials a steppingstone to future blessing (2 Corinthians 4:17-18, Living Letters).
My arms are around thee, and never have I loved thee more! I will make thee like a GARDEN OF FOUNTAINS whose streams are fed by the mountain springs.
And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a well watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fails not. ~ Isaiah 58:11

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Giving all to win the lost.....

1 Corinthians 9:19-22: For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win the more; and to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might win those who are under the law; to the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

What are you willing to give today? Remember that you can never outgive God; but make it your aim to try and watch His love through your abandonment draw ALL men to the cross!
ugh I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that  migt win more of them.To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law.

To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law.
To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some."

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Lion & Lamb by R. Kent Hughes

John 2:13-17
The hand that was stretched out on the cross and had that nail cruelly driven through it is the same hand that grasped the whip – the Lion and the Lamb. Let us be known for our hatred of sin and idolatry. We must not apply the whip to others, for we are not Christ, but let us apply it to our own lives. Let us be people so zealous, so overflowing , so burning, so full of Him that nothing else can intrude…[Then] we will have reverence for God in our lives. People will see our ethos – that it is real. It will affect our worship wherever we are, and our own church will become a house of prayer for the nations. The grace of God will go forth. May God deliver is from idolatry – a lower concept of Him than we see in our AWESOME, TRANSCENDENT, OMNIPOTENT, OMNISCIENT Lamb and Lion. 
                   ~R. Kent Hughes (emphasis mine)

Friday, July 8, 2011

Quote by Amy Carmichael

“Before the winds that blow do cease, teach me to dwell within Thy calm.  Before the pain has passed in peace, give me, my God, to sing a psalm.  Let me not lose the chance to prove the fullness of enabling love.  O Love of God, do this for me:  maintain a constant victory.” 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Set Thine Heart to Follow by FJ Roberts

Set Thine Heart to Follow the Lord
            by FJ Roberts (excerpt from Come Away My Beloved)

Show Me thy hand. Lo, I have fashioned it to bring glory to My name. For My Name is above every Name, and unto Me belongeth praise and glory, and in Me shall every living thing rejoice. For I will cause a light to shine out of darkness, and in that place where thou hast walked in defeat, there I will cause victory to break forth.
Rise, rise, and put on strength, o Zion; for  thou aret a people called by My Name, and in My Name shalt thou be strong and do exploits. And I will bless thee out of the abundance of heaven.
My strength shall be thy delivering power. For I the Lord am in the midst, to be to thee a mighty power, but there shall be none weak among you. But he that hath more abundant grace shall lend a lifting hand to him that hath less; and he that hath great rejoicing in his heart shall cheer them that languish.
For I know my works, Thine heart hath been an open book which My Spirit hath read. Yea, and I know thine every desire, and I know thine every need, and I go before thee, and I shall bring it to pass.
In the morning, lift thine heart in song. In the evening, let thy requests be made known. And My peace shall keep thee, and my grace shall be thy support.
Turn not into the diverging path, neither fear to follow Me. For as the Shepherd when he putteth forth his sheep goes before, so shalt thou know of a surety that I go before thee. And it shall be to thee a place of broad pastures, yea, of enlarged vision; of increased fruitfulness, and unabounded blessings – and nothing shall prevent Me.
Look not to thine own thoughts, but walk in the Spirit: so shalt thou accomplish the work which the Spirit desireth to do. Eternity alone shall reveal the fruit of this hidden ministry. For we labor not in the material realm, and we work not with the elements of this world; but our labor is in the realm of the Spirit, and the accomplishments are not judged by the human eye, but shall be revealed in the light of eternity.
There, be diligent. Follow Me so closely that there shall be no distance between. Listen carefully to My voice, that thou go not thine own way. For My path shineth more and more brightly unto that day. Set thine heart to follow to the end, or at the end there is laid up an exceeding weight of glory for them that endure."

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Intimate Admission

On December 31, 1989 I made my intimate admission into the kingdom of God. Thousands of times since then I have bowed my heart in surrender, renewing that commitment. I recognize that intimacy is Christ’s supreme desire and He is so worthy of whole hearted abandonment. I don’t want any rival to steal my affection from Him. Nothing stimulates, satisfies, and sustains me except for Jesus….

What is your story? Jesus offers you this same intimate admission right now…. it doesn’t matter if you accepted Jesus as your Savior a minute ago or a millennia ago, if your relationship is not vibrant, dynamic, and extreme…then you are missing out on the very best part of Christianity….and today is your day to yield and freely receive everything the Lord has for you!

Jesus is here longingly and tenderly waiting for you to welcome Him into your inner most being. He has riches to share with you that words cannot describe, love to pour forth that is beyond all comparison, and a lifetime of grand and glorious adventures planned for you….and He is asking you to come to Him as His Bride…More than His Friend or even His daughter…you are the joy and rejoicing of His heart, His beloved, called, chosen before the foundations of the world, His one and only! 

Jesus fought, bled, and died for you. You were worth leaving the glory of heaven, suffering a humiliating death, and spending all eternity scarred by wounds you inflicted upon Him. Death could not stop His love - not at the cross and not right now….. He is a total gentleman. He will not force Himself into your heart; but be still and listen as He softly beckons you to come, to seek Him, with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. Lay your life on the altar and watch His glory swallow up your failure and shame…. What are you waiting for? Will you come? Will you look with me into His eyes? There at the cross, broken, you will find yourself….that is His way…..
Romans 12:1-2: And so, dear sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice--the kind he will accept. When you think of what he has done for you, is this too much to ask? Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect his will really is.