Monday, March 19, 2018

Do You Love God?

Do You Love God?

Love the LORD your God, walk in all His ways, keep His commandments, hold fast to Him, and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul.” Joshua 22:5

As a pastor’s wife I have often heard people say, “I’ve always been a Christian” or, “I’ve always loved God.”  Many people who say those things are living in ignorance.  As usual, I take myself down memory lane.  Here’s how it was with me.
As a child I always attended church.  I learned so much in Sunday School about God and Jesus that I could tell anyone all the stories of the Bible.  I knew about God and also about Jesus. Then as I got into my teens none of that mattered.  My conscience bothered me at times, but having fun was what really mattered.
Then when I was married and had children, I finally got back into the habit of going to church and taking my children was important to me.  I was faithful to singing in the choir and being a part of the women’s group and even teaching Sunday School.  But, if someone had asked me, “Do you LOVE God,” I would have answered, “Of course.” If they had asked me, “What does it mean to love God?” I wouldn’t have known the answer, would you?
Joshua 22:5 gives us the true answer.  We should live our life according to the Bible; we should stand according to His every word.  Then we should serve God with all of our heart and soul; in other words we should always obey God in everything we do, not because we ‘should’, but because we want to; because our heart longs to make him happy. Do we do that or feel that way?
What Joshua said in the Old Testament, isn’t just for that time; it’s even a stronger command in the New Testament.  In Mark 12:30-31 Jesus said, And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.”  Then he goes on to say, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”  Now, isn’t this a little too much? I guess it isn’t because Jesus finished with this, There is no other commandment greater than these.”
We are commanded to love God with every part of our being and love others around us, because this is what God wants for us and for our betterment.  Remember the Bible tells us that obedience is better than sacrifice (I Samuel 15:22).  It took me forty years before I could understand what it really meant to ‘love God’. I still knew who God was and who Jesus was, but I had not given my heart to him. 
When I asked Jesus into my heart one day, my life took a big turn-around.  I’m not the person I was and I have never looked back.  My life really became new; all I could think about was the Lord.  All the things I learned about as a child came back to me along with understanding.  I have tried my best to follow God’s commandment.  Love the LORD your God, walk in all His ways, keep His commandments, hold fast to Him, and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul.” Joshua 22:5
This makes it sound like you have to be perfect to love God.  That’s not true – all though God wishes we could be, but only Jesus was or ever will be perfect. So he made a way for us to be part of his family and that way is Grace.  “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God”, (Ephesians 2:8). When you realized you acted out of what God wanted for you, just tell him you are sorry and to forgive you, that’s it; he has forgiven you through his grace and that is the end of it.
God loves you so much that He made a place in his family through his grace and wants you to be with him forever. In turn, we need to love God with all our being and long to spend eternity with Him.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Who I Really Am

Who I Really Am

“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” 1 Peter 2:9

You may not always feel like royalty, or look like it, but you are. We may go through trials and tribulations but, “Yet in all these things we are more than Conquerors through Him who loved us.” Romans 8:37.  This is what God sees when He looks at us. You may see yourself as a wounded, pathetic, defeated person, but God sees you as a warrior dressed in armor with sword in hand.
If you are a son or daughter of the King, he has equipped you to be in the battle for your soul and the power to win.  Ephesians 6:11 tells us to “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”  God has given you the power to be an overcomer. Don’t be afraid to stand up to what you are fighting against.
It would take too long to write all the passages in the Bible about all the gifts God has given you to be an overcomer; to be a conqueror.  It’s a lie of the devil to tell you you’re already defeated and have no strength. The truth is that “You can do all things in Christ Jesus.”  The Bible also says in Psalm 118:39, “For You have armed me with strength for the battle.”
In Psalm 46:1 we find all we need in the Almighty, “God is our refuge and strength.”  It seems that not only is God a refuge in times of trouble, but as the Apostle Paul said, “When I am weak, He is strong.”   I don’t see that we have a lot of strength in ourselves, but with God who gives us strength, we can do anything.
Last week I was talking about the Spirit of fear we sometimes carry and that makes us weak.  The rest of that scripture is so important because it says that God gives us Power and Love and a Sound mind.  We must grab hold of the truth about power and strength.  If we trust in God, the Father, he gives us the power and strength to come against all evil and to conquer the enemy.
We are not helpless.  We don’t have to believe the lies of the enemy.  The Devil uses many different ways, including people, to make us feel helpless and defeated.  Don’t fall for it.  If you are a child of God, you have the power and strength of the Living God on your side. In your spirit, raise high this banner with these word on it.  “The Lord is my strength and song and has become my salvation” (Psalm 118:14).
Over the years, as a Christian, I have realized more and more the presence of the Lord is constantly with me.  I discovered this one day while reading Isaiah 52:12, “For the LORD will go before you, and the God of Israel will be your rear guard.”  You cannot be watched over any more than that. I used to have a lot of fears, but they have disappeared as the years have passed because I have learned to trust more and more in the Lord.  Some have accused me of being too legalistic, but if the Word of God is true, how dare I question it?
Here is how I look at the Bible; every word is true because God can’t lie, neither does he retract his word because we live in a different time than when it was written. The Old Testament was the old Covenant which was preparing people for a later time, such as now.  We live in the New Covenant time, but the entire book is a manual for how to live and why we should live this way. It is filled with helps and also warnings of things yet to come.  If you are not prepared to face the future, you only have yourself to blame. Read the Bible!
When God warns us of the future, it is only because of His love.  He doesn’t want any of us to perish, but when we choose to not serve him or live as he wants us to, we are on our own.  There is no protection; no power of strength and no covering of safety. 

It is never too late to call on the name of the Lord.  Because of His mercy and grace, he is waiting for you to call out to him.  Whoever is playing mind games with you and discouraging you to not believe in God is and enemy of God.  You can always depend on God for the strength and power to stand against the enemy.
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, so you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, so you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.” Ephesians 6:10-18

Friday, March 9, 2018

Facing Your Fears

Facing Your Fears

I sought the LORD, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.”  Psalm 34:4

            We have all dealt with different fears in our lives. Some people are afraid of snakes or insect; mice or dogs; fear of heights or fear of water; fear of flying or even riding in a car.  I guess I could go on and on and still not bring the list to an end.  How did we take on these fears? They could be passed on through your family or they may be something you read about or a movie you saw.  There are people who claim to have no fear of anything; they may be either very brave or not have any sense at all.
            It may come as a shock to you to realize fear is a spirit that does not come from God.  2 Timothy 1:7 tells us that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound (sane) mind.”  Fear cannot have a hold on it unless we allow it. With the power of God within us, we can get rid of those fears.
            Of all the different fears we must face, there is one fear that uncountable people ignore and it should cause us to tremble and that is the fear of the Lord.  This is not the kind of fear that makes you terrified of what can happen to you. It is a type of fear on knowing who God is and the power that is connected to God Almighty.  There are many who have no respect for God or his words in the Bible.  They don’t even believe that God is the same yesterday and today. 
            It is so important that in the last book of the Old Testament, Malachi 3:16, God gave us this warning.  “Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, And the LORD listened and heard them; So a book of remembrance was written before Him For those who fear the LORD And who meditate on His name.”  If you understand the Word of God, you will understand what the Fear of the Lord is.  God has all power over everyone and everything.
            God has told us in Hebrews 13:5,I will never leave you nor forsake you.”  We can count on that because He said it.  If you understand the power of God we can say without fear of man, The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (13:6) 
            If you believe the Word of God and act on it, you will also understand the Fear of the Lord.  You know that what God says will happen, will really happen.  If you don’t believe in God, don’t worry, the die is cast and you will end up in Hell. Your name will not be written in the Book of Remembrance at the end of days.
            The wonderful thing is that the Savior is still knocking at the door of your heart waiting for you to let Him in.  The love and forgiveness of God is beyond our understanding.  He will be waiting for you until you take your last breath.  After that there is nothing even God can do. 
You must know that there are only two things that can control you in life; one is God and the other is Satan.  For you are a slave to whatever controls you.” (2 Peter 2:19)  You may think you are free to do what you want during your lifetime, but in actuality you only have two choices.  You may not know you have already made that choice.  Just know that you can change the outcome by turning to God.   
            In times past, I cried to God and he delivered me from all my fears, just like in Psalm 24:4.  God turned my life around and since then my name has been written in the Book of Remembrance.  I thank God that he heard my cry and set me free, and I pray the same for each of you.  “Lord, bring the cries of your people to your ears and set each one free.”  Amen!

Sunday, February 25, 2018

How to Get Mercy

How to Get Mercy
“The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease.
Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.
Lamentations 3:22-23 (NLT)

 Did you ever stop and think how little you deserved God’s love?  When I have a particularly bad day that began when I said something mean about someone because of what they did, I thought for a second, “Why did I say that?” Then I listened to gossip about someone who had sinned and was in trouble. Did I pray, “Lord, be merciful to that person,” or did I say, “They deserved what they got?” It seems we are so ready to condemn others when we, ourselves, rely on God’s mercies?  
                                                                                                                                                               As Christians, we don’t often see the sunshine for the clouds.  There was a time I had been going through a period of self-condemnation and I came across a scripture that has taken hold in my heart.  God’s mercies are new every morning!  I may have had a bad day today, but when I wake up in the morning, God’s mercies begin afresh.  I know I can count on that.  This scripture continues on by telling us that God’s faithfulness never ends and His mercies never stop.                                                                                                                                                                                                            King David in the Old Testament, so loved by God, was not the perfect person.  He was the one that killed Goliath, the Giant, and did many great things for Israel.  When he became King he had the greatest power in the land, he got himself in big trouble with God.  The King developed a great lust for a woman, the wife of Uriah, the Hittite.   Eventually, the King had Uriah killed in battle so he could take Uriah’s wife, Bathsheba for his own. Terrible times came to King David who finally repented.  In Psalm 51:1 he prayed to God, Have mercy upon me, O God, according to your lovingkindness; according to the multitude of your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.” 

 Remember this, God’s loving kindness and tender mercies are there for you.  Going on to the New Testament, in 2 Corinthians 1:3, we are reminded that God is “the Father of mercies and God of all comfort.”   God never changes and if you have sinned in the past, know that God is the same today as he was in times past.  He is always ready to forgive you even day by day and every morning.  Each day when you open your eyes, you can know for sure, if you are truly sorry for whatever was done in the past, you are forgiven because God’s mercies are new every morning.                                                                                                                                                                                                           Listen to this, “Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.”  Colossians 3:12-13 (NLT) if you know someone you’ve be angry with and have never forgiven them or showed any mercy for, you are in trouble with God. He tells us in Matthew 6:15, But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.”                                                                                                                                                                                     Remember how much God loves you. “The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease.”   He has shown you mercy when you don’t deserve it.  Can’t you show others the same mercy? 

Sunday, February 18, 2018

When Godly People Do Ungodly things

When Godly People Do Ungodly Things

“Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.”   Colossians 2:8

Deceit is one of the most hateful ways of treating others; deceit is another word for cheat.  There are other words that go along with it; things like underhandedness. It does happen in the Christian world oftener than you think.  Colossians 2:8 explains that it happens among those who follow worldly traditions and people who think they can deceive others.  However, it is never right for Christians to deceive each other.

Let me give you an example of deceit that many Christians don’t have a problem with and that is Income Tax.  First of all, if you are living a Godly life and want to follow after Jesus, you won’t cheat.  Cheating is the same as stealing no matter how you look at it.  Let me quote Jesus Christ. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.” Romans 13:7. In other words, if you owe IRS taxes, don’t try to cheat the IRS, pay what is due.  If you are not honest in filling out your tax claims, it will come back to bite you.

A man I knew personally, many years ago, was self-employed and would only claim a small amount in taxes. This worked great for him for many years, but when he died, his wife could only draw a very small amount; not enough to live on. She was old and had to depend on things she made and sold, so she was very poor the rest of her life.  This is not an unusual practice and people will actually brag about how they cheat the government.  Cheating or deceit will never come to gain. 

It has always upset me when I see Christians cheating and think it’s alright.  Have you ever been in a store with someone when the clerk gave them too much change back and they didn’t say anything, but put it in their pocket and went on their way.  It doesn’t happen as often today as it was years ago when their cash registers were not electronic.  Let me tell you a little story from years ago. 

My husband and I along with our two little daughters had to move to Texas, because of one of the girl’s health. My husband got a job in the oil fields, but it didn’t pay much and we were very poor. Christmas was coming and I knew I had to be very careful on spending.  Out of our meager income I had saved $20 dollars to buy my children something for Christmas. I went shopping at a nearby town that had a dime store. My children went to Sunday School and were going to be in a play at church, so I wanted to get them something new to wear. I bought each of them a little white t-shirt, and I found nice piece of bright material on sale, so I could make them each a skirt.  I didn’t have a sewing machine, but I sewed them by hand.

I found some small toys and books to wrap for them and I knew they would be happy with that.  When I checked out at the counter, I gave the clerk my $20 dollar bill and she totaled everything up and gave me back some change. I stuffed it in my pocket and went out to the car.  I had to stop to get loaf of bread so I pulled my money and there was a $10 dollar bill extra.  I looked at the $10 and thought for a minute what I could do with it, but my mother had taught me about honesty and I couldn’t keep it.  I went back in the store and up to the counter.  I explained what happened and the clerk began to cry.  She said if I hadn’t given it back, she would have had to pay it when it came up as ten dollars short and that was all she had to her name. She thanked me over and over again and I felt really happy when I left.

I’ve never forgotten that incident so long ago and was so grateful to my mother for teaching me not to cheat, deceive or steal, no matter what my own circumstance were. You see, my heavenly Father sees everything I do and to do under-handed things puts shame on God.  God will never bless anyone who isn’t honest.

I have often read the story in Acts 5:1.  But there was a certain man named Ananias who, with his wife, Sapphira, sold some property. He brought part of the money to the apostles, claiming it was the full amount. With his wife’s consent, he kept the rest.”  He didn’t have to lie or deceive the others, but he chose to do that rather than be honest.  Here was a godly man and woman who decided to do an ungodly thing. They didn’t believe anyone would know, but the Holy Spirit of God knew and did not let this deceit go unpunished. Both the man and his wife dropped dead in front of the disciples. 

We live in a different time, but the Holy Spirit is still very much alive and watches everything that happens to Christians.  He is also our Comforter and helps us through many things, but not the bad choices we make.    Job 31:5-6, “If I have walked with falsehood, or if my foot has hastened to deceit, let me be weighed on honest scales, that God may know my integrity.”  (Integrity is the qualifications of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness and not taken to lying.)

“Holy Spirit, keep my feet from taking a wrong turn and my mouth from lying and deceit.  Let me be honest in all my dealings and in the things I say. Amen.”

Sunday, February 11, 2018


“It’s all about love.”

“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”                Romans 8:38-39 (NLT)

These last four weeks have been a challenge and a joy to try to put my words in a simple understanding way.  To those who have not yet asked Jesus into your life and heart, listening to long-time Christians may be very difficult to understand and even confusing.  However, you don’t have to fully understand everything the Bible says.  All you need to know is that Jesus, the Son of God loves you just like you are.

Just like blog #1, the Grace of God is that He wants you to come to Him just like you are.
Like blog #2, at the end of our days, whenever that may be, He wants you to spend eternity with Him so you can live in peace and joy forever.  However, the choice must be made before you die so you won’t end up in constant pain, sorrow and fire.

Like blog #3, you must accept that there is only One God, not several. God our Father is the only one that has always been and always will be.  Hard as that may be, we must know that so we can become the children of God. People make gods, of animals, clay and other human beings, but remember, it is God Almighty that made the earth and everything on it.

This is blog #4 and this is all these others compiled into this one and it gives the complete answer.

Jesus died for you knowing you might never love Him back!  

That is what you might call, ‘The Ultimate Gift’. Once I understood that, my heart was flooded with love for the one who loved me more than life itself.  I knew I didn’t deserve it after the times I turned my back on Him when I wanted to sin in worldly ways. It wasn’t a very pretty picture.  Now I have served God for over forty years and wish it had been longer. 

However, I will not waste my time going over the past.  I am a new person whose life was saved by Jesus death on the cross.  He paid the price for the sins of my past and also for yours if you accept it.  If you don’t make a choice to follow Jesus today, you might not have another chance.  It’s true we can live forever with a life lived with God, but if not you might as well plan on dying and spending eternity in Hell with all the demons and Satan.

Remember this: God loves you just like you are right now.  Jesus paid for your sins, but only if you accept Him as your Savior. If you want to ask me any questions, or make comments, my email is  I would love to pray for you.

Monday, February 5, 2018

There is Only One God

There is Only One God

Look to Me, and be saved, All you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other.” 
Isaiah 45:22

You have no doubt heard this saying many times, (born again). Jesus spoke this truth, in John 3:1-7 There was a man named Nicodemus, a Jewish religious leader who was a Pharisee. After dark one evening, he came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi,” he said, “we all know that God has sent you to teach us. Your miraculous signs are evidence that God is with you. “Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” “What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?”  Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again.” 

This sounds like some kind of old time religion, but is actually meant for all time. There are two elements that Jesus spoke about in the above scripture; “born of water” and “born of the Spirit”.  When the Bible speaks of being born of ‘water’ it means that when we were birthed, we have all been born of water. Born of ‘water’ is speaking of the natural birth that happened when we all came into this world.  That’s pretty simple to understand. Jesus said this so we could see the difference in what it means to be “born again”.
To understand the “Spirit” we must go back to who God is. God is our creator who created the world and the universe around us.  The Bible tells us that there are three parts to God; God the Father, God the Son (Jesus) and the Holy Spirit.  Our human minds cannot really understand how this can be. They work separately, but all three are One. Some day we will understand, but the Bible tells us that this is true, so in faith believing, as Christians, we must accept this.
Using natural terms, I will try to explain it as simply as possible.  “A man can be a father, a son and a husband”, but is still a man.  Another way to describe it is an egg is made up of three parts; the shell, the yolk and the white, three separate things, but together it’s an egg. However, don’t trouble yourself because we know God is the creator and so much more and Jesus the Christ is our Savior and the Holy Spirit is our Comforter and leads us in all ways. 
Now going on to other gods.  Different religions have their own gods, but they are man-made statues with no beginnings.  You can worship these statues and cry out to them over and over again, but you will never get an answer, because they can’t respond.  You can lay all kinds of food in front of them but they will never take it.  It’s a little like the tale of Santa Claus where kids leave him cookies and milk.  It’s gone in the morning because Mom or Dad got up in the night and ate it.  Santa began as a story in other countries and eventually the story caught on in America.  He is a fable or a fairy tale and we know it’s not true.
There have always been other gods that people made statues of and called them ‘gods’.  We know when other gods were created and then disappeared like the Greek gods.  God the Father is known from the creation of the world.  We know where His Son, Jesus died and was placed in a tomb. If you do not believe that God is the only God and is eternal, you are not a Christian….
So, you have been born by a natural birth and now you must be born of the Spirit.  How do you do that? You must accept Jesus as your Savior. “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.” Romans 8:14 If you call on the name of the Lord (Father, Son or Spirit) he will give you Salvation for eternity.  When you do that you become a child of God which means, you are born again.  Your life will gradually change to what God wants you to be, if you follow him.
I could probably say much more, but I don’t want to complicate what I have already written.  I pray that you may understand and accept that God’s work in you is because He loves you.

And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”  1 Corinthians 13:13 

This is the third part of this series and next week will be the 4th and last part entitled "WHY?"
Its really important to have read the first 3 parts of the study in order to understand part 4 coming next week.