Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hosannah!

Palm Sunday. We celebrate the triumphal entry on Palm Sunday. The day that the disciples went and found the colt, right where He said it would be, and He rode it into town. The people threw their coats and clothing down for Him to ride across their clothing. They waved the palm branches...the children shouting, "Hosanna, Hosanna in the Highest!" He should have been riding a fine horse but instead a young donkey...the Savior of the World with the people whom He loved. The ordinary people not the elite and rich just the regular people and the kids...

I am so thankful that Jesus loves us, the ordinary people...His kids. I am excited for this Sunday to come and see the kids in our church celebrate Jesus with their Palm Branches. To worship the King...I have been picking the music and when I hear it and imagine the children in my mind waving the Palm Branches for Jesus it makes me cry. I can only imagine how He felt and He knew what was coming! Then I get excited to think how He must feel seeing His kids worship Him! Yeah...thank You Jesus for coming and dying for me...for them, for all of us....for the ordinary and the elite. Thank You for loving us...thank you for riding in on the donkey.

Monday, March 30, 2009

It is sooo Worth It!

58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. I Cor 15:58


Planted deep....immovable...always consistently abounding in the work of the Lord. How do we do this? By staying in the Word and putting one foot in front of the other. Not quitting! Keeping focused on God!

Whenever I get discouraged I think that is when I struggle with the "knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord." One time I had questioned the Lord about moving to Burley because it just didn't seem to grow like I thought it should. I remember very clearly as I was leading worship. I looked out in the congregation and there was "Aunt Mary" worshipping the Lord with her hands raised. Mary is an elderly woman who didn't know Jesus her whole life. She accepted Jesus late in life through our ministry. I heard the Lord ask me very clearly..."Would you have come just for her to know me, just for one?" I replied, "Yes Lord, just for Mary...just for one."

God is so good that He would send us to Idaho just for Mary to know Jesus....now I know that we have reached many more than Mary but it certainly put it in perspective for me! He knows how I work! He ministered to my heart. It so blesses me so to see Mary worship Jesus! Her salvation alone makes me to know that my labor is not in vain!

We need to take time to reflect on the victories that the Lord has given us. It encourages us and reminds that our labor is not in vain.....it is worth it all even if we only get to lead one to Jesus. Thank You Lord for giving me the honor to lead people in Your Salvation.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Out of the Box

4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: I Cor 12:4-7

I am so glad that I serve such a big God that He ministers in many ways in different people! He gives us different gifts! One God but many avenues of ministries.

We, as humans tend to put God in a box. Actually it isn't God who is in the box. He isn't limited either! We need to poke our heads out of our box, (that we try to put God in), and look for God moving and ministering! We need to pray and seek God to see if He would have us minister in a way that will reach people out of our comfort zone.

Remember there are diversities of gifts but the same Spirit! Different ministries but the same Lord! So how do you know? Does it line up with scripture? Because God will not go against His Word. Is the ministry producing fruit? Does it profit the body of Christ?

Lord Jesus, please help me not to limit You and Your ministry. Expand my view of You and help me to be open to where You would lead me! Thanks God! I love You!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

An Escape Plan

12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape I Cor. 10:12-13

I had a friend many years ago who told me something that I would never forget...it truly was a piece of wisdom that I have kept close to my heart. I had asked her how someone could cheat on their spouse especially when both of them were Christians. She told me as soon as you think it can never happen to you or that you would never do that (no matter the situation or sin) then be very careful because that is just where the devil wants you! It's a trap!That is when or where he will trip you up! Vs 13 says no temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man! It is the ordinary everyday stuff that can trip you up especially when you get comfortable and unguarded!

The good news is that the bible says that He will always make a way of escape when we are tempted! God is faithful! Cry out to Him when you are tempted! He will provide a way out! Whew! An escape plan...be aware, and when you feel like nothing can trip you up that is when you are vulnerable. When you find yourself surrounded by temptation stop and pray. Cry out for help and the Deliverer will provide the escape plan for you! The bible says to flee or to run when temptation comes! Don't hang out around it!

Thank you Jesus that You know our weaknesses and that you have planned a way for escape for us. Help me be aware of the enemies traps and help me walk circumspectly! I love You Lord!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Good News!

29 The Lord is far from the wicked,
but he hears the prayers of the righteous.
30 A cheerful look brings joy to the heart;
good news makes for good health. Proverbs 15:29-30 NLT

I am so excited that God hears our prayers! He is so faithful to answer our prayers. We are what I like to call "prequalified" not by anything that we have done but just simply because He died for us and we accepted His gift of Salvation. It grieves my heart when I hear people say, "God doesn't answer my prayers." He always answers them...it isn't always yes, but He will always give us an answer. God loves to spend time with His kids. The question is "Do we like to spend time with Him?" Do we listen for His answers? Do we work to keep the lines of communication open? Are we keeping our hearts clean?

In verse 30 it talks about a cheerful look brings joy to the heart. I think a cheerful outlook and good report (or news) brings joy to the heart! So sometimes I have to go and look for the good report because I might just not be "seeing" the good stuff. The Word of God is full of great reports!

The other day I was in the car and the old song "Whose Report Will You Believe" came to my mind. I started singing it and it says whose report will you believe...we will believe the report of the Lord! For His report says I am free His report says I am healed...you get the gist of the song...anyhow it stirred my heart up! I got so excited! You know the devil is a liar and he would love for us to buy the lie but if we go to our "good report" it reports the truth! The good news!

When we share good reports it stirs others too! Whenever I pray for someone lots of times I will share about good reports that God has done before and it stirs my faith and their faith! So share good reports! Do it for yourself and for others!

Whose report will you believe? We will believe the report of the Lord!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

He Loves Me As High As The Heavens!

10 He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. 11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; 12 as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; Psalm 103:10-13

I am so thankful that God doesn't treat us like we deserve to be treated! I am really glad that he doesn't repay us according to our sins! Not only does He not do both of those things but it says as far as the east is from the west he has separated us from our sins! YES!

He loves us so very much. He has compassion for us! God has compassion for us. He just doesn't put up with us or allows us to simply exist...He LOVES us! He LOVES ME!

I think if we could just grasp that He loves us soooo much we would live our lives much differently. He loves us as high as the heavens are above the earth...that is really high! Woo Hoo I am loved by the Almighty Living God!

This week I want to challenge you to say "God loves ME" every time you pass a mirror. Look into that mirror into your own eyes and say it....God loves ME! Then act like it! Act like God loves you....I think it will make a difference in your life. Then do one more thing....after doing this for ten days write me and let me know how it changed your thinking! Okay?

Have a really blessed week!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Don't Quit

18 Then the LORD said to Joshua, “Stretch out the spear that is in your hand toward Ai, for I will give it into your hand.” And Joshua stretched out the spear that was in his hand toward the city.
26 For Joshua did not draw back his hand, with which he stretched out the spear, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai. Joshua 8:18;26

Joshua had experienced failure in war against Ai before this victory. He went before the Lord and asked why they lost the battle and God told him that there was sin in the cammp. Joshua then didn't ignore the sin and went on he went and searched it out and then got rid of the sin and then went back before the Lord again and this is when God says to stretch out his spear and that He would give it to Joshua's hand.

It wasn't over once God gave the promise. Joshua still had to go take the city or land of Ai. Do you think that it was easy for Joshua? I don't. It was still work, but I love verse 26 For Joshua did not draw back his hand, with which he stretched out the spear, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai.

Joshua did not turn back. He didn't quit. Joshua took God at His Word and he did his part too. When things didn't go right he went before God and found out what was wrong, he searched out the sin and dealt with it and then he didn't quit or give up until the promise was fulfilled!

Are things not going right? Have you gone before God to see what is wrong? Have you searched to see if there is sin in your "camp"? If you find sin are you going to deal with it and get rid of it? Are you going to give up or are you going to "not draw back your hand" until God's promise is fulfilled?

I want to see everything God has promised to me to be fulfilled! I am not quitting! And do you want to know the best part? God will go with me!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Just One Stone of Many

21 Then he spoke to the children of Israel, saying: “When your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, ‘What are these stones?’ 22 then you shall let your children know, saying, ‘Israel crossed over this Jordan on dry land’; 23 for the LORD your God dried up the waters of the Jordan before you until you had crossed over, as the LORD your God did to the Red Sea, which He dried up before us until we had crossed over, 24 that all the peoples of the earth may know the hand of the LORD, that it is mighty, that you may fear the LORD your God forever.” Joshua 4:21-24

We need to set up stones so that when our children ask in time, "What are this stones?" We can tell them what God did in our lives!

So what has God done in your life? In my life I have seen God miraculously provide for us in ways I could have never figured out on my own! I have seen God heal cancer! I have seen God's hand move in many circumstances. But tonight I want to share a story to you about a man name James

In the eighties we lived in Bend, Oregon. My husband worked at the mill. Now during this time Bend was a predominately white community. There was a young man named James who came to work at the mill who happened to be black in color. My husband hit it off with James right from the start. They would tease each other and play practical jokes on one another. My husband would share with James about the Lord and then always say, "When are you going to come to church with me, man?" James never came. Well, one night on the way home from work James was jumped and beaten pretty bad by a few men. My husband was concerned for his friend. James started selling drugs because it was better money than the mill and before long he quit the mill job. We lost contact with James after he left the mill. We soon moved to the valley which was about four hours away from Central Oregon.

We thought and prayed for James often. A few years later and after we had a son that we named James, we were around the house talking about our friend James. I asked my husband, "What do you think happened to James?" He said that he hoped that he didn't get sucked into the drug lifestyle. End of the discussion and we went to bed. The next day my James and I were getting ready to go to the mall. Now my husband hates the mall and the crowds and we were leaving so that my hubby could study and write his sermon. As we were getting ready to leave my husband told us to wait that he wanted to go shopping with us! WHAT???? Yes I heard what he said. We waited and he came.

We made it to the mall and my son and I were at Kaybee Toys, my husband went to a book store. After a little bit I heard my husband yell my name. I looked out to the hall and my husband was standing smiling from ear to ear with his arm around James, our friend! He had been at the bookstore with his back facing the mall. He said that he felt a large presence standing in his space and he heard a voice whisper in his ear, "What are you doing in my store boy?" He spun around to see James smiling! He got him! LOL The very next thing out of James' mouth was, "When are you going to come to church with me man?" God is so good. James moved away and later found Jesus. He is serving the Lord. And God was so gracious to us that he let us find out that James accepted Jesus before we got to heaven! That blessed us so very much and still encourages us when we think, reminese and talk about it.

It was such a God appointment. Jason hates the mall. God arranged for James and Jason to be at the mall at the same time and for James to see Jason with us both being so far from our old surroundings and years later. A true miracle.

That is just one story of so many miracles of God in my life. One stone of many. One stone to pass down to our kids and grandkids. Take time and think of a stone that represents something that God has done in your life. I would love to hear about your stones if you would like to share them with me! We can praise God together.

Thank You Lord that you have done so many things in my life. Thank You for letting us see James once more and most of all for his salvation. Thank You for arranging that meeting this side of heaven! You Rock!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Be Bold and Strong! God is With Us!

6 Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. 7 Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. 8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:6-9 NKJ

Be strong and courageous!Do not turn from it to the right hand or the left...so how does a person do that? Well, the word tells us how in the very next verse, this book of Law shall not depart from your mouth! Meditate in it day and night. How much stronger we would be if we truly did meditate on and in it day and night? I know that when the enemy starts to try to plant seeds of doubt or fear that if I quote the Word of God it doesn't effect me like it does when I go with it or entertain it or have not spent time in the Word! God's Word is true! It is still applicable to us today!

So let's make a commitment to be strong and courageous! To not be afraid or dismayed because our Lord is with us! Wherever we go! The biggie is meditating in and on the Word and not letting it depart from our mouths!

Thank You Lord for giving me courage and boldness! Thank You for making me prosperous and blessing my life! You are such an awesome God. Thank You for Your Word too!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Worship and Rejoice!

“Then you shall set it before the LORD your God, and worship before the LORD your God. 11 So you shall rejoice in every good thing which the LORD your God has given to you and your house, you and the Levite and the stranger who is among you.
Deut. 26:10-11 NKJ


This is talking about bringing the tithe before the Lord after they possessed and dwelled in the promise land which God gave them...just because God gave them the land didn't mean that the work was over. They had to possess it and then live in it and work the fields. When the harvest came they gave God the first fruits, that is where this verse comes in.

Then you shall set it before the Lord your God and worship before the Lord your God. I love verse 11 so you shall rejoice in EVERY GOOD THING which the Lord your God has given to you and your house! Man, how often do we get caught up in the work of things that we start to complain instead of rejoicing in every good thing? It wasn't easy to possess the land. Then after they possessed it they had to dwell there, plow the land, plant, weed, and water the crops and then you have to harvest.

We always get excited when we think of the harvest but in all reality, the harvest season is hard work! Long hours...I think that we tend to romanticize it. It is true that it is exciting to see the reward of your hardwork but it doesn't mean that the hard work is over. In the midst of every stage of this process we need to remember to worship, be thankful and rejoice! Rejoice for every good thing! God has given us so much to be thankful for and we need not to get caught up in the pace of our lives that we forget to be thankful for every good thing that the Lord has given us. We need to rejoice in the Lord! We need to rejoice when the Lord blesses others too.

Worship and rejoice today! Look around and take time to reflect on what the Lord has given us...big and small and rejoice! Don't forget to tithe too. He gets the first fruits not the left overs. This is of our time too. Make sure you give God your attention so that when He speaks to you, you will hear His voice.

Thank You Lord for being so faithful to us even when we are not always faithful to You. Thank You for blessing us. Thank You for giving us the land, help us live well in it and not quit...help us in the harvest. Thank You God for the harvest.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Celebrate revised edition

Hey I was so tired when I posted last night so I thought that now while I am awake I will fill in some of the great details.

I said that my husband got to lead someone to Jesus but it was a great example of team work. Someone planted the seed and many of the guys watered the seed. Then yesterday at a meeting the guys had been sharing and my husband got to harvest the seed. What a great example of sowing, watering and reaping.

PTL! God is good. This makes the second salvation in a week's time. God is moving. So please remember some of you are planting, some are watering and some get to harvest but everyone plays an important role in the whole process. Don't get discouraged when sharing the faith...because even when it doesn't seem to make a difference because someone is watching! Live your life for Jesus and share when you can and pray all the time!

Keep the faith!

Shanin

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Celebrate!

Today I have a reason to celebrate...my husband had the wonderful opportunity today to lead someone to Jesus. Man, that means that the angels were celebrating big in heaven tonight! Yes...another life saved.

I have another praise too. I received a raise yesterday. I am thankful for a good job that God provided for me.

Have a blessed night and don't forget to reset your clocks tonight. it is time to spring forward!

Shanin

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Blind Bart

46 Now they came to Jericho. As He went out of Jericho with His disciples and a great multitude, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the road begging. 47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 Then many warned him to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
49 So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called. Then they called the blind man, saying to him, “Be of good cheer. Rise, He is calling you.” 50 And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus. 51 So Jesus answered and said to him, “What do you want Me to do for you?” The blind man said to Him, “Rabboni, that I may receive my sight.” 52 Then Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus on the road. Mark 10:46-52 NKJ


I love the story of Blind Bart. First of all he cried out to Jesus. They warned him to be quiet but he yelled even louder. He was desperate, what did he have to lose? Jesus stood still and had him called! Jesus heard him...he heard his desperate cries.

I love this next part...Bart threw aside his garment and rose and came to Jesus. He threw off his garment...he stepped out of his comfort zone...he knew what he wanted/needed and he asked, "Rabboni, that I may receive my sight."

Do you realise that you need Him so much that you will cry out? Even when they try to hush your cries will you cry out even more? Will you not let anything stand in your way of Him? Will you throw off your coverings or garments, expose who you really are with all of your problems to Him? Will you ask for His help?

He will hear your cries. He won't reject you. He will heal your hurts, injuries or disabilites. He loves you...and me.

The best part I saved for last...not only did Jesus hear and heal him but Bart (who was no longer blind Bart but a new improved Bart...a new creation) followed Jesus on the road! Who knows maybe Bart got a new nickname...Roadie Bart? Or Bart, the guy that used to be a blind beggar? Or Bart the follower of Jesus?

Monday, March 2, 2009

Jesus I Believe, Help My Unbelief...

23 Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” 24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” Mark 9:23-24 NKJ

Man, I am so there this week. Lord Jesus, I believe but I really need help with my unbelief...the flesh part of me. God has given us promises and there are days that I get weary in believing if they will ever happen during this lifetime. Then I *know* that God's word is true and He says all things are possible to him who believes. I believe that God can change the hearts of Kings...I believe that man cannot stand in the way of what God has planned or promised. Yes! God can do anything! He has a plan...it is so big and so detailed that I cannot even fathom how it will come about but I do know that God delivers on His promises....not in my time in His time, which is perfect!

I get excited when I look back and see where the hand of God has moved in my life. Just like Mary did when she recalled all of the things that God did for the children of Israel when exiting Egypt...she was building her faith...an angel had appeared to her to tell her of Jesus birth...how impossible was that? But it happened just as God said! So I am going to do just that tonight....

I have seen God heal cancer. I have seen God provide miraculously. I was there when God spared our lives in a wreck. I have seen God move things with His hand that only God could arrange! I have seen divine appointments! I have witnessed God's favor in action. I have seen God defend us when things looked pretty bleak. I have seen hardened hearts softened. God provided our church building and then sent people to remodel it! LOL I remember my husband saying one day we will remove this old false front and put a stucco finish on it and it will look so nice and I was thinking how will we ever have the money to do that? Guess what? It is finished...and it is beautiful. God is faithful to carry out His promises!

Thank You Lord for answering prayers and hearts desires. Thank You for delivering on the promises that You give. I can hardly wait to see how You will have it all come together... and it will be amazing because You do the impossible! I am glad that I serve the God that no matter what circumstances surround me Your Word stands true. To God be the glory.