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Monthly Archives: October 2010

Persecution sets you up for blessing

Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Matthew 5:10

In Exodus God refers to himself as a warrior and often times he leads us into battle to teach us to fight the good fight of faith with His word as our weapon and shield.  I found myself being persecuted by someone that I cared very much for.  At one time this person believed 100% in me and my ministry.  Now I found myself constantly being on the receiving end of hostility, criticisim and accused of lying.  I was having a conversation with this person and they admitted that they had anger for me for years and when I asked why….they replied ‘because you are not everything that you can be’.  I felt God whisper to me that the anger is not about me, but really the anger is within themselves that they are not living up to everything they could be.  During another conversation, this person called me a hypocrite and God lovingly led me to his word where Jesus actually calls the accuser the real hypocrite.  God kept validating to me that the person’s issue was really with themself and not me.  One day I was on a very popular business networking site and I saw this person had actually lied about their work history……wow is this the same person that told me they never lie???  Even though their issue was being directed at me, I was personalizing it and it made me feel really bad about myself.  If we read in the Gospels, we see that Satan comes to take the word in Mark 4 ‘and they had no firm root in themselves, when affliction or persecution comes because of the word, they fall away’.  That is exactly what was happening to me, there was an issue with my root, which is my life or confidence in God and who He says that I am and the persecution served to have me turn away from God and look at myself.  In some translations the word offended is used and in the greek that is skandolizo which is where we get the word snare from.  Satan’s goal is to trap or to snare you, it immediately affects your emotions to provoke you into action.  That is why it is so very important not receive what others say about you.  Our reaction is to take matters in our own hand and defend ourselves and point out the hypocritical faults in others.  If you choose to take matters upon yourself, you tie the hands of God and basically operate in pride and say that His word is not true and you cannot expect to receive peace and justice.  Two wrongs don’t make a right.  I received instruction from the Lord to bless my enemy and forgive a debt that was owed to me and the person did not even thank me!  That was the hardest thing I could have done!  The Lord says in Isaiah that His ways are higher than our ways.  My act of obedience will return a reward to me when I need it most.  If you find yourself where you have or are being persecuted, bless your enemy and don’t say another negative thing about that person because God says that you are blessed.  Being persecuted or accused when you are innocent is difficult, but being rooted deeply in God’s word will give you confidence and peace and THAT is the very thing that others around you need desperately and will seek after.

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Posted by on October 25, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

Lazarus… come forth !

The story of Lazarus (John 11) is one of the most compelling stories in the bible.  Interestingly, it is only recorded in 1 of the gospels.  Lazarus was a friend to Jesus and when he heard of his illness he purposefully stayed where he was instead of running to his side.  Jesus allowed Lazarus to die, be buried and actually begin decomposing.  What looks like Jesus tarrying after his death and perhaps seemingly does not care, he then begins his journey 3 days after Lazarus had died.  At Jesus’ arrival, his family was visibly upset and Jesus spoke “did i not say that if you would only believe, you would see the Glory of God”.  Jesus could have healed Lazarus while he was sick, but there was a greater purpose in his death.  When Jesus spoke people were healed, storms were calmed and when Jesus had the stone rolled away from Lazarus’ tomb….he said Lazarus, come forth!  After Lazarus was resurrected, Jesus spoke of its purpose “that these witnesses would know that He (God) has sent Me”.  

When we find ourselves in a situation that seems dead or impossible, we instinctively cry out to God asking him where is he, why is he allowing this to happen or does he even care?   There may be greater purpose by allowing your circumstances to progress to hopeless.  He just may allow something to die or even begin to stink and decay.  In God’s perfect timing, He will call your Lazarus forth resurrecting your dead circumstances to life, and God allowing you to the be the conduit of a miralce for many witnesses to see Jesus revealed in your life giving to those who have no hope, the hope of Glory!

 
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Posted by on October 22, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

No Comparison

For I consider the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.   James 8:18

One night at my girlfriend’s house we were laughing because she had returned a movie to Blockbuster without the movie in the case.  Little did I know that was marked as a divine appointment for me.  The movie was Evan Almighty and it was a movie that I had avoided, I decided to watch it with my girlfriend before returning it.  I really appreciate the writer of this movie because even through a comedy, his portrayal of God was so accurate.  Evan became congressman and wanted to change the world.  God heard and answered his prayer.  Evan’s world changing experience began through ridicule and embarrassment, his questions to God were answered with this “everything I do is out of love for you”.  Evan had gone through so much trial and scrutiny and he even asked God if he could love him a little less.  Close to the end as Evan has lost most everything and is about to lose his family and being disgraced publically,  God had something to reveal through Evan.  The dot connector for me was going through a trial for the past year and a half.  I have been confused, broken and angry and everything I was believing for was lost.  Lord where are you and why are you allowing this?  I hear God’s answer to me, “everything I do is out of love for you”.  When I heard those words whispered in my spirit, I realized that the trial that I had been going through has revealed things to me about myself, life and God.  I am actually a different person because of it.  God’s glory in me today is greater than what is now behind me.  Today the blame, bitterness and victim mentality is now gone…..I am actually grateful for my experience!   It seemed that I had lost something valuable, but actually what is ahead of me is greater than anything that is behind me.  Trusting God is hard because we look at our circumstances and its hard to see that God uses them to reveal His Glory and on the other side His word is true that the Glory will be greater than the present suffering.  No matter what your suffering is today, trust and wait on God’s glory to be revealed to you and on the other side you will be grateful for what was revealed.

 
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Posted by on October 6, 2010 in Uncategorized