Archive | October 2014

“Then Samuel said, Does the LORD take pleasure in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as He does in obedience? Certainly, obedience is better than sacrifice, paying attention is better than the fat of rams.” (1 Samuel 15:22)

Hello! How are you? I know my life is crazy busy…would you agree that yours is as well? It’s almost the end of October….time is marching on and life has a way of happening when you are in the middle of making other plans. The key is how one responds to life’s changes-especially since God is the one who is either making the changes; or allowing them to occur. “and do not turn aside from any of the words which I command you today, to the right or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them. “ (Deuteronomy 28:14)

You may ask, what does she mean about that? I will tell you. First, I want you to know that God is a Sovereign Ruler. In layman’s terms, that means He is in charge and nothing sneaks passed Him without Him knowing or His say so. But, we think He has no idea about what is happening to us, or, how circumstances affect us. We get so caught up in the drama that we lose sight of WHO our God is and WHAT He can do when we are in crisis-and even when we are not in crisis. The issue is what happens next. We take our eyes off Jesus and put the focus on our own self and our situations and we “go through the motions” of our alleged faith. I say “alleged” because we are not always living true faith that can be seen by others. Oh, we may act pious or religious, but, that’s what I mean by going “through the motions”. We can react mechanically because of the knowledge we possess, but the heart may have grown cold and turned from God during this time. “Now therefore amend your ways and your deeds and obey the voice of the LORD your God; and the LORD will change His mind about the misfortune which He has pronounced against you,“ (Jeremiah 26:13)

Make no mistake…God sees and hears everything; and He sees what is actually within our own heart (disbelief, selfishness, religion, etc…) He will reveal to us what is in our heart because He is merciful and loves us and He will give us the opportunity to confess our sins to Him and repent (turn from) them so as to restore our relationship with Him. “However, they did not all heed the good news; for Isaiah says “LORD, WHO HAS BELIEVED OUR REPORT?” So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” (Romans 10:16-17)

God does not want our sacrifice of our time and money to “a cause” or, a church;, or a charity just because it seems like the right or good thing to do. It’s easy to write a check or to participate in something once, twice, or even monthly. But who are you doing it for? God? Or, self? God wants our heart attitude to be submissive to Him and His Word. He wants us to obey His will and applyit  to our own lives what the Bible says. He does’nt want us to be mindless robots without a soul or a brain, He just wants what is best for us as any loving Father (or mother) would want for their children.  We need to change our minds and focus on Him completely. We need to get our mind soley off of ourselves when all we have to offer this world is nothing but selfish ambition.  “We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.“ (2 Corinthians 10:15).

God, through His Son, Jesus, understands the struggle we endure because He endured every form of struggle and temptation straight to the Cross at Calvery.  To paraphrase one of Michael Card’s verses “it was His love that kept Him hanging on the cross.”  God gave us a way to live and those that are His to behave like Him.  What I mean by “His” are those Born Again Believers that received Jesus Christ, the Messiah into their hearts and follow after Him. These are ones He calls His children. [Live] as children of obedience [to God]; do not conform yourselves to the evil desires [that governed you] in your former ignorance [when you did not know the requirements of the Gospel] But as the One Who called you is holy, you yourselves also be holy in all your conduct and manner of living.For it is written, You shall be holy, for I am holy. “ (1 Peter 1:14-16)

Our lives should emulate God’s Holiness. We will struggle. We will fall down on our face (sometimes in shame or fear) and the enemy of our souls will continually whisper discouragement in your ears, but, we can continue on because the Spirit of Jesus lives inside of us and His mercies are new every day!. Therefore, my dear ones, as you have always obeyed [my suggestions], so now, not only [with the enthusiasm you would show] in my presence but much more because I am absent, work out (cultivate, carry out to the goal, and fully complete) your own salvation with reverence and awe and trembling (self-distrust, with serious caution, tenderness of conscience, watchfulness against temptation, timidly shrinking from whatever might offend God and discredit the name of Christ).” (Phillippians 2:12-Amplified) 

As you walk Every Day With Grace, know that struggles are guarenteed in this life, but indiffernce and religion are spiritual killers because we lose focus of God.  A small cost of obedience to God is worth so much more than all the wealth in this world. He owns everything and everything is His-so what does He really need? I think this song by Keith Green sums it up perfectly.  The song is convicting and liberating.  I hope you really think about the words and then take a good look at your life and the commitment you say have with God.

In His Love,

Melody

TO OBEY IS BETTER THAN SACRIFICE-by Keith Green

To obey is better than sacrifice

I don’t need your money, I want your life
And I hear you say that I’m coming back soon
But you act like I’ll never return

Well you speak of grace and my love so sweet
How you thrive on milk but reject my meat
And I can’t help weeping at how it will be
If you keep on ignoring my words
Well you pray to prosper and succeed
But your flesh is something I just can’t feed

To obey is better than sacrifice
I want more than Sundays and Wednesday nights
‘Cause if you can’t come to me everyday
Then don’t bother coming at all

To obey is better than sacrifice
I want hearts of fire, not your prayers of ice
And I’m coming quickly to give back to you
According to what you have done
According to what you have done
According to what you have done

 

‘Now see that I, even I, am He, And there is no God besides Me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; Nor is there any who can deliver from My hand.” (Deuteronomy 32:39)

thHello. How are you? Are you enjoying the changing of the seasons. Are you getting ready for time change at the end of the month?  That’s when we lose one hour and “fall back” an hour. Anyway, I love the autumn and the change of seasons. I think it gives one an opportunity to slow down and reflect what is going on in one’s life and to see what changes occurred and what changes are needed to be implemented (if possible).

One  of the things I ponder is: why are we so resistant to heed warnings from God (and man)?  Why do we resist change? Why do we think we know better? Why must we struggle within ourselves so unnecessarily? Why are we unable to let go of our own control and trust God-even though a change could only benefit us?  Am I the only one who struggles with these questions? I don’t think so. Whether we like it or not, God is in control of our lives-as it states in the above scripture. There is only one God and other. (Right there should settle every question when people ask if God is real and if there are any other gods.) It clearly states that God is the One that kills and makes alive. He is the One who allows our wounds (physical and emotional); and He is the One who makes alive and no one can take His own from His hand. That, my friend is the Sovereignty of God. All things are ordained by Him and are through Him because He is God. Even the Eboli virus that entered the United States. He allowed that to happen. So what do we do? How do we respond when we are weak and/or scared? Do you think God even hears us?

How we should respond to God during these times?  We need to cry out to God…”O LORD my God, I cried out to You, And You healed me.” (Psalm 30:2) “Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh, And strength to your bones.”  (Proverbs 3:7-8) “Have mercy on me, O LORD, for I am weak; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are troubled.” (Psalms 6:2) “My son, give attention to my words; Incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your eyes; Keep them in the midst of your heart; For they are life to those who find them, And health to all their flesh. (Proverbs 4:20-22)  “Heal me, O LORD, and I shall be healed; Save me, and I shall be saved, For You are my praise.”(Jeremiah 17:14 NKJV) (Jeremiah 30:17 NKJV) “For I will restore health to you And heal you of your wounds,’ says the LORD, ‘Because they called you an outcast saying: “This is Zion; No one seeks her.”‘ (Jeremiah 30:17)

We need to listen to God: “He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions.  (Psalms 107:20)  “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14) “And he said, “If you diligently heed the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the LORD who heals you.” (Exodus 15:26) “He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:3)

We need obey God and take responsibility for our actions“Come, and let us return to the LORD; For He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up.” (Hosea 6:1) “Return, you backsliding children, And I will heal your backslidings.” “Indeed we do come to You, For You are the LORD our God” (Jeremiah 3:22) Who else can we turn to?  “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. (James 5:14-16) We need to understand that we need to faith in God in our relationship with God. The strength of our faith is our profession of who we are to God and who He is to us. “Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately. And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.” (Luke 8: 47-48) “Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.” And his servant was healed that same hour.” (Matthew 8:13)

How do we know what God says is true?  How does He respond to us? “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.” (Matthew 14:14) “I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely, For My anger has turned away from him.” (Hosea 14:4) ‘Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth.” (Jeremiah 33:6) “Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.” (Matthew 9:35)

How do we know Jesus understands what we go through? “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)  “And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.”  “(Healing of the lame man at the Gate Beautiful)  “Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, “by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.” And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.” (Act 4:29-31)

There is so much more I can add to this, but, I think you get the picture. We have a Sovereign God who loves us and is in control of all things?  So why should we fret so much? As you walk Every Day With Grace, take comfort in knowing that God through Jesus has us in the palm of His hand and there is nothing that can take us from it. Know you are loved and can always have peace in Jesus whatever circumstance you come across. He is our peace. He is our Healer. He is our God and He is the Lover of our souls.

In His Love,

Melody