Faith Messages to build your faith

Friday, August 31, 2012

Listening to God in the Little Things



Sharon Jaynes tells us, "God will never reveal more truth about himself until you have obeyed what you already know."
                                                                                        
 "One of my favorite devotion books My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers

 On October tenth, he wrote, 'All God’s revelations are sealed until they are opened to us by obedience.


 You will never get them open them through philosophy or thinking.  


But once you obey, a flash of light comes immediately. ...Obey God in the thing He shows you, and instantly the next thing is opened up…God will never reveal more truth about himself until you have obeyed what you already know.' (pg. 586)


We must never fall into the trap of thinking that God will always give us 'big' things to do.  "Jesus…took a towel and …began to wash the disciples’ feet…” (John 13:3-5). 


Through his act of servant leadership, he demonstrated the obedience we should have on a daily basis in the mundane activities of everyday life. Yes, he raised the dead, but he also washed the feet.


 One evening Steve and I were on our way to dinner. Just before we arrived, I saw three teenage girls walking into another restaurant in the same area where we were going to eat. 


 One of the girls had been in a small group I had led for two years. I felt God nudging me to go into the restaurant and pay for their dinners.


'Steve, there’s Christine,' I said. “'I believe God wants me to pay for those girls’ dinners.'


Steve, being a man who listens to God, whipped the car around and headed toward the door.


'Hi girls,' I said as I walked up to them in line.

'Hi  Mrs. Jaynes. What are you doing here?'          
'May I take your order?' the cashier interrupted.
'Go ahead girls,' I urged. 'You go first.'

Each girl ordered and then the cashier turned to me.  'And you ma’am?'

'Oh, I’m not having anything. I just came in to pay for these girls 'dinners.'

The threesome were very surprised and very appreciative. I ran back out to our car, feeling a warm sense of listening and obeying.


 The next day, Christine called. 'Mrs. Jaynes,' she said 'thank you so much for paying for our dinners last night. My friends were so touched. No one has ever done anything like that for any of us before.


See, last night, they wanted to go out to dinner, but I told them I couldn’t afford it.  So they were going to pay for mine. Then you came in and well…thanks.'

 Obeying God only cost me $19.95, but the lesson to Christine, and her two friends was invaluable. 


Jesus said, “Give and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you” (Luke 6:38). 

        
 Obeying God begins with heeding the simply nudges. Don’t be afraid! 

Many people are afraid to obey those nudges because they aren't absolutely sure it is God’s voice. I've decided that if the inner prompting lines up with Scripture and is consistent with God’s character and ways, then I’d rather err on the side of obedience that the side of caution.


  'We all have those times when there are no flashes of light and no apparent thrill to life, where we experience nothing but the daily routine with its common everyday tasks…


.Don’t always expect God to give you His thrilling moments, but learn to live in those common times of the drudgery of life by the power of God….I must realize that my obedience even in the smallest detail of life has all the omnipotent power of the grace of God behind it' (O. Chambers June 15).


 'If I obey Jesus Christ in the seemingly random circumstances of life, they become pinholes through which I see the face of God' (O. Chambers November 2).


 My prayer is that I will be able to say like the prophet Isaiah, “He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught. The Sovereign LORD has opened my ears, and I have not been rebellious; I have not drawn back” (Isaiah 50:4-5).


Let’s Pray


 Dear Lord, I’m listening. Speak to me. Nudge me. I will not be rebellious. I will not draw back.


 In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn


 Today, I encourage you to pay attention to any way that God might be nudging you to be His hands and feet.

 Then join me on my blog page, look for this devotion’s entry, and tell me what happened. I can hardly wait. Don’t feel uncomfortable telling me. Don’t feel like you’re tooting your own horn. I just want to toot my party horn in celebration of your obedience! www.girlfriendsingod.com

 One of my greatest passions is to become a woman who listens to God. If you would like to sharpen your God-listening skills, check out my book, Becoming a Woman who Listens to God.It is not a matter of whether or not God speaks. It is a matter of whether or not we will listen. "


Listening to God in the Little Things by Sharon Jaynes 
on (July 26, 2012) Sharon Jaynes

info@girlfriendsingod.com  www.girlfriendsingod.com


Tomorrow morning's post: A Picture of Him Our Daily Bread

Tomorrow evening's post: Be a Blessing by Pocket Devotions


Today’s treasure truth #1: If you are “born again”, you are a child of God. (Rom. 8:16)
Our thought for today: You'll understand God's plan as you need to!





Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Veil in the Unbeliever: Prayer Note #68






Dutch Sheets tells us, "We have a part to play in lifting the veil off the mind of the unbeliever."

"This chapter, (section in Sheet's book, Intercessory Prayer), is all about spiritual warfare for the lost.

 It is perhaps the most important in the book. 

The primary purpose of the previous chapter was to prepare us for this one. 

We have a part to play in lifting the veil off the mind of the unbeliever. 2 Cor. 10:4, which we will elaborate on later, speaks of strongholds that are a part of this veil. We participate in the destruction of these fortresses. 

Strongholds are not demons, they are places from which demons rule.

 We will look closely at several words from these two passages to gain a more thorough understanding of what is being said. 

The passage in 2 Cor. 4:3, 4 tells us there is a veil or covering over the minds of unbelievers that keeps them from clearly seeing the light of the gospel. 

It is important to know they don't see the gospel because they can't see it. They don't understand it because they can't understand it. They must have an unveilinga revelation."
  
Prayer Note #68 -taken from Dutch Sheets’ book, Intercessory Prayer (160,161)


The next Prayer Note on Sept. 4th. A Distorted Perspective: Prayer Note #69

If you're interested in reading past posts on Dutch Sheets' book, check out the listing on the previous months, and just click on the titles.

Tomorrow’s post:  Listening to God in the Little Things  Sharon Jaynes
Today’s treasure truth #40: If you are “born again”, you are blessing the Lord at all times and continually praising the Lord w/ your mouth. Ps. 34:1

Our thought for today: Nothing will hinder God's answer to our  prayers! We're to stay in faith! 
You may want to check my crafts order blank in my PAGES at the top of the page. There's a link here to view several of the cards.

http://twitter.com/jeanoathout
http://facebook.com/jean.oathout  my home page


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Taking Out the Trash





Max Lucado asks, "Who wants to live with yesterday’s rubble?  Who wants to hoard the trash of the past?  You don’t, do you?  Or do you?"

"I’m not talking about the trash in your house, but in your heart. 

 Not the junk of papers and boxes but the remnants of anger and hurt.  Do you rat-pack your pain?  Amass offenses?  Record slights?

 A tour of your heart might be telling.  A pile of rejections.  Accumulated insults.  No one can blame you.  

They’re innocence takers, promise breakers, and wound makers.  They’re everywhere and you’ve had your share.

 Jesus answered Peter’s question in Matthew 18:21 and 22 when he asked:  “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me?  Seven times?”  “No, not seven times,” Jesus said.  “Seventy times seven!”

Do you want to give every day a chance?  Jesus says to get rid of the trash.  Give the grace you’ve been given!"

Listen to UpWords with Max Lucado at www.OnePlace.com

"The works of the LORD are great, studied by all who have pleasure in them. His work is honorable and glorious and His righteousness endures forever...The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all those who do His commandments. His praise endures forever."  (Ps. 111:2, 3, 10)
    "Our union with Christ makes us saints, but our obedience to God's Word through the power of the Holy Spirit makes us saintly.Marvin Williams
Oh, to be filled with His life divine,
Oh, to be clothed with His power and might;
Oh, to reflect my dear Savior sublime,
Always to shine as the saints in light! —Anon.
Saints are people whom God's light shines through."
Our Daily Bread
Aug. 21,2012
A quote from Charles Stanley:    "I've been a Christian long enough to tell you this: There's not a single promise in God's Word that He has ever failed to keep. Scripture has encouraged me in times of adversity and given me strength when I felt weak. This is the Book I know I can turn to again and again and be reminded that my sins have been forgivenand that no matter what happens, I have a loving Father in heaven, a helper in the Holy Spirit, and a Savior in the Lord Jesus Christ." 


Tomorrow’s post:  The Veil of the Unbeliever: Prayer Note #68 by Dutch Sheets

Today’s treasure truth #39 : If you are “born again”, you are the light of the world. (Matt. 5:14)
Our thought for today: There's nothing we have done wrong that Jesus can't fix!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Peeling Off the Veils: Prayer Note #67




Dutch Sheets tells us, that we should seek to unwrap the wrapping around the minds of the lost.

   [After watching some surgeries on the internet, Dutch "received a revelation of the inside of a human bodyat least some of it." He could see beyond the wrapping of the outside, to what was inside. His message is that we would seek to unwrap the wrapping around the minds of the lost.] 
    "The Bible says there is a veil that keeps unbelievers from clearly seeing the gospel:
          “And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those
            who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world
            has blinded the minds of the unbelieving, that they
            might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of
            Christ, who is the image of God (Cor. 4:3,4).

   My lexicons told me the word 'veil' means 'to hide, cover up, wrap around.' the Greek word is kalupsis. They said the inside of a tree is veiled by bark, the inside of a human body is veiled by skin. I understood immediately!

   The New Testament word for a 'revelation' is simply kalupsis with the prefix apo addedapokalusis. Apo  means 'off or away' so literally a revelation is an unveiling, an uncovering as I watched those surgeries, I received a revelation of the inside of a human body—at least some of it."

Prayer Note #67, Peeling Off the Veils - taken from Dutch Sheets’ book, Intercessory Prayer  (159, 160)

The next Prayer Note on Aug. 30th- The Veil of the Unbeliever: Prayer Note #68

"The Holy Spirit has the ability to enlighten our minds, to wake up our spirits and to move our emotions in such a way that we will find it easier to give in to Him rather than refuse Him. Yet, God will not go over the head of His church even to save a soul. He must have Her cooperation. If She will not intercede, the Holy Spirit, by His own choice, cannot do His assigned work of showing us our sins and convincing us of our need of a Savior. 

Because God’s purpose is to prepare His Bride for eternal rulership with Him, He has chosen to save no person until His church cries out for that person’s salvation. “The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come!’” (Rev. 22:17) — not the Spirit alone, but the Spirit and the Bride. He will do nothing without Her. Therefore, He can do nothing without Her.” 

Taken from DESTINED For the THRONE BY  Paul E. Billheimer (pgs. 64, 65)
Tomorrow’s post: Taking Out the Trash  Max Lucado
Today’s treasure truth #38: If you are “born again”, you are an imitator of Jesus. (Eph. 5:1) 
Our thought for today: Jesus teaches us to live radically different lives from those who don't
 know Him.









     



Monday, August 27, 2012

A Youth Leader's Wife


Words are like apples of gold.


Sarah Lynn Phillips tells us, "Our fourteen-year-old fidgeted in her chair. 'I can’t decide whether to go tonight. 

Taylor can’t be there. I’ll be all alone.'

A few months earlier, Elisabeth’s friend invited her to go to a neighboring church’s youth group. 

Regular attendance quickly became part of her Wednesday routine.

'But I like to go. The Bible studies help me . . . and the youth leader’s wife talks to me.

'What’s her name?' I asked.

'I don’t know.' Elisabeth lowered her head, gave me a shy grin, and almost whispered, 'But she’s always nice to me.'

A kind word, a reaching hand, eyes that notice an unsure smile . . . these small intentions demonstrate the love of Jesus in a personal way. 

They communicate care and pass along hope. They say, 'You’re significant. You matter to me and to God.'

Everyday, God guides us to the paths of those who need our encouragement.

We have the opportunity to make a difference—if we’re not too busy or intimidated or preoccupied with our own worries. 

Let us look for ways to see beyond ourselves to color someone’s outlook a brighter shade, to instill confidence, to lend a hand . . . to be 'nice.'

Elisabeth studied hard for her science mid-term, finishing just in time for her dad to drop her off at the church—all alone. 

That night, a small group prayer time united young hearts as one girl shared the pain of her parents’ divorce.

Another’s dad faced a serious operation due to cancer. And the youth leader’s wife promised to pray for Elisabeth’s grandma who had surgery the next day.

When the opportunity to share’s the love of Christ presents itself to you, don’t let it pass. 

Your actions may very well change someone’s life. Take the opportunity.

Thank you, Lord, for this nameless young woman who has reached out to our daughter with ‘a word fitly spoken.’ 

Help me to make a difference in the lives of those you bring my way, just like her.

"A word fitly spoken and in due season is like apples of gold in settings of silver."
Proverbs 25:11, AMP Bible


A Youth Leader’s Wife – Sarah Lynn Phillips




Sarah Lynn Phillips, and her husband Barry, live in northeastern Pennsylvania and have been married for thirty years. 

They have three daughters. Sarah is a freelance writer and the editor of The Women’s LINK, a seasonal newsletter for the women in her church and community. 

She enjoys homemaking, reading, and quilting.
Read Sarah’s devotions.


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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Feet of a Deer



Here fishy, fishy, fishy

Jo Ann Walczak says, "God’s promises and loving kindness provided the only solution to my fear.

I was gifted with a dead bird, a variety of disemboweled mice, moles, chipmunks, and a squirrel which raced frantically around the living room. 

Callie, my calico feline, prowled our backyard with confidence and alacrity, the queen of her kingdom, the mistress of her fate.

One evening she outdid her usual hunting skills…and her self-assurance. 

I happened to be in the yard as a full-grown doe stepped over our back stonewall with Callie hard on her heels. 





This was a prize of stupendous proportions. Callie’s muscles were taut, her eyes bulged, every nerve alert to prey.

Despite my presence, the doe neither twitched nor bolted but allowed Callie to circle her and reconnoiter the situation.

The cat was nonplussed. Here was a problem which she could not master or control. Her mind and her mouth longed for the capture but could not contain it.

I have been in Callie’s place, facing a problem larger than my mind or spirit could grasp. 

I have stood in the shadow of the overwhelming. Lacking self-confidence and awash in confusion, my spirit flagged. In my own power I was helpless to fix, alter, or understand the problem.

With nerves throbbing and eyes dilated, I considered its enormity and my inability to control it, and there I collapsed into the loving arms of Jesus.

God’s promises and loving kindness provided the only solution to my fear. Praying, trusting, leaning and depending on Him, I inched through the problem. 

I learned His sufficiency to meet life’s great problems. He is trustworthy and able to save.

Callie’s 'problem' chose to stroll quietly from the yard. My problem lingered and sent me to the feet of Jesus who makes my feet like the feet of a deer and enables me to go on the heights.

"The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights." Habakkuk 3:19 NIV

The next time you face adversity or confusion, lean on Christ. Let Him meet the needs of your life."


Jo Ann Walczak was a middle and high school English teacher for thirty-one years.

 She taught spoken English in a public high school in China and has returned to China many times to minister in an orphanage. 

She is active in women’s Bible studies in her church and teaches ESL through the local literacy agency. She has two sons and five grandchildren.

Read Jo Ann’s devotions.

Feet of a Deer – Jo Ann Walczak